Olga San Juan

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Olga San Juan
Alan Young.jpg
Olga San Juan with Alan Young
Born(1927-03-16)March 16, 1927
DiedJanuary 3, 2009(2009-01-03) (aged 81)
OccupationActress, dancer, comedian
Years active1943–1960
Edmond O'Brien
(m. 1948; div. 1976)
Children3; including Brendan O'Brien

Olga San Juan (March 16, 1927 – January 3, 2009)[1] was an American actress, dancer and comedian, mainly active in films during the 1940s.

Early years[edit]

San Juan was born in Brooklyn, New York to Puerto Rican parents.[2] When she was 3 years old, her family moved back to Puerto Rico, then moved back to the United States a few years later.[3]


San Juan was dubbed the "Puerto Rican Pepperpot" for singing and dancing roles alongside Bing Crosby, Fred Astaire and others.[4]

After talent scouts found her at the Copacabana nightclub in New York City,[2] she signed a contract with Paramount Pictures in 1943.[5] In 1951, she starred on Broadway in the Lerner & Loewe musical, Paint Your Wagon.

Personal life[edit]

San Juan was married to actor Edmond O'Brien. They met at a publicity luncheon for Fox studios, and married in 1948. San Juan retired in the 1950s to raise her children. They had three children: television producer and actors Brendan O'Brien, Maria O'Brien, and Bridget O'Brien, who is married to Barry Adelman, executive producer of the Golden Globe Awards. O'Brien and San Juan were married 28 years, until their divorce in 1976.

San Juan's health began to fail after a stroke in the 1970s, but she lived to enjoy her family for decades to come. She died on January 3, 2009, of kidney failure stemming from a long-term illness, at age 81, at Providence St. Joseph Medical Center, in Burbank, California.[4] She was buried at San Fernando Mission Cemetery in Mission Hills, Los Angeles, California.


  • Donaldson Award for her work in Paint Your Wagon.[6]
  • Screen Actors Guild Latino Legacy Award for work throughout her long career.



  1. ^ "Actress, dancer Olga San Juan dies at 81". Nydailynews.com. 2009-01-06. Retrieved 2014-04-13.
  2. ^ a b Rosado, Luis (September 6, 1943). "Meet the Stars". Texas, Big Spring. Big Spring Daily Herald. p. 3. Retrieved March 13, 2016 – via Newspapers.com. open access publication – free to read
  3. ^ Tamara WartaDance Company Director. "Olga San Juan Biography". Dance.lovetoknow.com. Retrieved 2014-04-13.
  4. ^ a b Actress, dancer Olga San Juan dies at 81, Posted 1/6/2009, USA Today
  5. ^ Hopper, Hedda (April 28, 1943). "Hedda Hopper's Hollywood". Pennsylvania, Harrisburg. Harrisburg Telegraph. p. 9. Retrieved March 13, 2016 – via Newspapers.com. open access publication – free to read
  6. ^ [1] Archived January 9, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.

External links[edit]