This article needs additional citations for verification. (April 2010)
November 21, 1921
Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
|Died||December 9, 1995 (aged 74)|
New York City, U.S.
|Resting place||Kensico Cemetery, Valhalla, New York City, U.S.|
(m. 1945; div. 1956)
(m. 1959; div. 1961)
Vivian Blaine (born Vivian Stapleton; November 21, 1921 – December 9, 1995) was an American actress and singer, best known for originating the role of Miss Adelaide in the musical theater production of Guys and Dolls, as well as appearing in the subsequent film version, in which she co-starred with Marlon Brando, Jean Simmons and Frank Sinatra.
Blaine was born in Newark, New Jersey to Leo Stapleton, an insurance agent, and Wilhelmina Tepley. The cherry-blonde-haired Blaine appeared on local stages as early as 1934 and she started touring after graduating from South Side High School.
Blaine was a touring singer with dance bands starting in 1937.
At one point in the 1940s, she was the top-billed act at New York's Copacabana nightclub. In his book, Dean and Me: (A Love Story), Jerry Lewis wrote about appearing at the club when Blaine was on the same bill: "We [Lewis and Dean Martin, as the double act Martin and Lewis] weren't even the top-billed act. That honor went to a Broadway singing star named Vivian Blaine, who'd conquered Manhattan, gone out to Hollywood to make movies for 20th Century Fox, then returned to the Big Apple in triumph. Vivian was a lovely and very talented actress and singer ..."
In 1942, Blaine's agent and soon-to-be husband Manny Franks signed her to a contract with Twentieth Century-Fox, and she moved to Hollywood, sharing top billing with Laurel and Hardy in Jitterbugs (1943) and starring in Greenwich Village (1944), Something for the Boys (1944), Nob Hill (1945), and State Fair (1945).
Following her Fox years, Blaine returned to the stage, making her Broadway debut as Miss Adelaide in the Frank Loesser musical Guys and Dolls in 1950. Her character Miss Adelaide has been engaged to inveterate gambler Nathan Detroit played by Sam Levene for 14 years, a condition which, according to her song "Adelaide's Lament", has given her a psychosomatic cold as well as chronic heartbreak.
After the show's 1,200-performance Broadway run, Vivian Blaine and Sam Levene reprised their roles as Miss Adelaide and Nathan Detroit in the first UK production of Guys and Dolls, which opened at London's West End Coliseum a few days before the 1953 Coronation; the two stars performed their roles 553 times, including a Royal Command Variety Performance for Queen Elizabeth on November 9, 1953. Vivian Blaine as Miss Adelaide, Sam Levene as Nathan Detroit and Robert Alda as Sky Masterson also performed twice daily in a reduced version of Guys and Dolls when the first Las Vegas production opened a six-month run at the Royal Nevada, September 7, 1955, the first time a Broadway musical was performed on the strip. Vivian Blaine recreated her role as Miss Adelaide in the film version in 1955.
As Blaine reached age 50, her television career took off, with guest appearances on shows like Fantasy Island, Murder, She Wrote and The Love Boat, and a recurring role in the cult hit Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman. On the 25th annual Tony Awards in 1971, she appeared as a guest performer and sang "Adelaide's Lament" from Guys and Dolls.
Blaine in her later years was managed by Rob Cipriano and L'Etoile Talent Agencies in New York City. Cipriano spent the early 1980s developing projects for Blaine, including Puppy Love, a TV sitcom with Jake LaMotta and Pat Cooper. She always commented that working with Cipriano reminded her of working with her first husband Manny Franks.
Blaine's first marriage, to Franks, lasted from 1945 to 1956. She then married Milton Rackmil, president of Universal Studios and Decca Records, in 1959, and recorded several albums prior to their 1961 divorce. In 1973, Blaine married Stuart Clark. In 1983 she became the first celebrity to make public-service announcements for AIDS-related causes. She made numerous appearances in support of the then fledgling AIDS-Project Los Angeles (APLA) and in 1983 recorded her cabaret act for AEI Records which donated its royalties to the new group; this included the last recordings of her songs from Guys and Dolls. Her prior albums for Mercury Records have all subsequently been reissued on CD.
Blaine died of congestive heart failure on December 9, 1995, aged 74.
|1942||It Happened in Flatbush||Minor Role|
|1942||Thru Different Eyes||Sue Boardman|
|1942||Girl Trouble||Barbara||Alternate titles: Between You and Me / Man from Brazil|
|1943||He Hired the Boss||Sally Conway|
|1944||Greenwich Village||Bonnie Watson|
|1944||Something for the Boys||Blossom Hart|
|1945||Nob Hill||Sally Templeton|
|1945||State Fair||Emily Edwards|
|1945||Doll Face||Mary Elizabeth 'Doll Face' Carroll||Alternate title: Come Back to Me|
|1946||If I'm Lucky||Linda Farrell|
|1946||Three Little Girls in Blue||Liz Charters|
|1952||Skirts Ahoy!||Una Yancy|
|1953||Main Street to Broadway||Vivian Blaine||Uncredited|
|1955||Guys and Dolls||Miss Adelaide|
|1957||Public Pigeon No. 1||Rita DeLacey|
|1979||The Dark||Courtney Floyd|
|1982||Parasite||Miss Elizabeth Daley|
|1983||I'm Going to Be Famous||Laura Lowell|
|1953||The Philco Television Playhouse||Episode - "Double Jeopardy"|
|1954||Center Stage||Episode - "Heart of a Clown"|
|1954||The Colgate Comedy Hour||Winnie Potter||Episode - "Let's Face It"|
|1955||Damon Runyon Theater||Cutie Singleton||Episode - "Pick the Winner"|
|1955||Hallmark Hall of Fame||Georgina Allerton||Episode - "Dream Girl"|
|1955||What's My Line?||Mystery Guest|
|1956||The Bob Hope Show||Episode - "The Awful Truth"|
|1956||General Electric Summer Originals||Episode - "It's Sunny Again"|
|1957||Lux Video Theatre||Coral||Episode - "The Undesirable"|
|1963||Route 66||Dixie Martin||Episode - "A Bunch of Lonely Pagliaccis"|
|1976||Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman||Betty McCullough||21 episodes|
|1978||Fantasy Island||Mrs. Deverse||Episode - "The Big Dipper/The Pirate"|
|1978||Katie: Portrait of a Centerfold||Marietta Cutler||TV movie|
|1978||The Love Boat||Barbara Sharp||Episode - "The Minister and the Stripper"|
|1979||Vega$||Lenora||Episode - "Everything I Touch"|
|1979||The Cracker Factory||Helen||TV movie|
|1979||Fast Friends||Sylvia||TV movie|
|1979||Sooner or Later||Make-up Artist||TV movie|
|1979||CHiPs||Vivian Blaine||Episode - "Roller Disco: Part 2"|
|1983||Amanda's||Aunt Sonia||Episode - "Aunt Sonia"|
|1985||Murder, She Wrote||Rita Bristol||Episode - "Broadway Malady"|
- One Touch of Venus (1948)
- Bloomer Girl (1949)
- Light Up the Sky (1949)
- Guys and Dolls (1950–53)
- Panama Hattie (1955)
- A Hatful of Rain (1956–58)
- Rain (1957)
- Say, Darling (1958)
- Gypsy (1960)
- A Streetcar Named Desire (1961)
- Born Yesterday (1961)
- Gypsy (1962)
- Enter Laughing (1963)
- Mr. President (1964)
- Guys and Dolls (1964-1966)
- Never Too Late (1965)
- Cactus Flower (1966–67)
- Damn Yankees (1967)
- Any Wednesday (1968)
- Don't Drink the Water (1968–69)
- Take Me Along (1968)
- The Marriage-Go-Round (1970)
- Zorba (1970–71)
- Company (1971–73)
- Light Up the Sky (1971)
- The Glass Menagerie (1972)
- Follies (1973)
- I Do! I Do! (1973)
- Twigs (1973–74)
- Hello, Dolly! (1974)
- The Best of Everybody (1975)
- Brothers and Sisters (1975)
- Light Up the Sky (1975)
- Almost on a Runway (1976)
- How the Other Half Loves (1977)
- Last of the Red Hot Lovers (1977–79)
- The Boy Friend (1979)
- The Prisoner of Second Avenue (1979)
- Zorba (1984) (replacement for Lila Kedrova)
- Hello, Dolly! (1985)
- 1930 United States Federal Census
- U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007
- Grimes, William. "Vivian Blaine, the First Adelaide In 'Guys and Dolls,' Is Dead at 74", The New York Times, December 14, 1995. Accessed December 19, 2019. "Ms. Blaine was born in Newark. Originally her last name was Stapleton. While she was still in elementary school, her father, a theatrical agent, booked $1-a-night singing dates for her at nightclubs, company parties and police benefits. At 14 she began singing with the Halsey Miller Orchestra, and after graduating from Southside High School went on the road with little-known bands."
- Lewis, Jerry; Kaplan, James (2007). Dean and Me: (A Love Story). Crown/Archetype. ISBN 9780307423559. Retrieved November 9, 2016.
- "Vivian Blaine - About This Person - Movies & TV - NYTimes.com". Movies & TV Dept. The New York Times. Baseline & All Movie Guide. 2008. Archived from the original on February 7, 2008. Retrieved January 15, 2012.
- "Vivian Blaine - Live In Hollywood (CD, Album) at Discogs". Discogs.com. Retrieved January 15, 2012.
- "Vivian Blaine Singing Selections From Pal Joey/Annie Get Your Gun: Vivian Blaine: MP3 Downloads". Amazon.com. Retrieved January 15, 2012.
- "VIVIAN BLAINE - Sings Songs from The Ziegfeld Follies & The Great White Way (SEPIA 1106)". Sepiarecords.com. February 12, 2008. Archived from the original on March 18, 2012. Retrieved January 15, 2012.
- "Vivian Blaine, Broadway Star of 'Guys and Dolls', dies at 74". Bangor Daily News. December 15, 1995. Retrieved February 26, 2014.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Vivian Blaine.|
- Vivian Blaine at IMDb
- Vivian Blaine at the Internet Broadway Database
- Vivian Blaine at AllMovie
- Vivian Blaine at Find a Grave
- Vivian Blaine Papers at the New York Public Library
- on YouTube
- Vivian Blaine papers, 1916-1995, held by the Billy Rose Theatre Division, New York Public Library for the Performing Arts