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Hooray for What


Neil
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...evidently the "favors" of Vivian Vance, that's WHAT.

According to Kay Thompson biographer, VEEV slept her way from understudy into Kay Thompson's part as the show progressed in out of town previews---with the composer Yip Harburg and star: ED WYNN!! one year older than "that old man" William Frawley.

Oh, that shrinking violet!

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I found this book a couple weeks ago and read the "Hooray for What!" section. I really don't think Kay was fired because of Viv. The production was a mess during the out of town tryouts. The first performance ran SIX HOURS long! A ton of people were either fired or left the show. Choreographer Agnes deMille was one of those fired. Another who left the show was Roy Roberts! I don't think Viv was given the part on a temporary basis until they could get a star to replace Kay, but before opening night they gave Viv the role permanently. I don't know if Viv's relationship with Harburg or Wynn had anything to do with it. Vivian was initially attached to Russel Crouse, who wrote the book to the show, as well as Viv's two earlier Merman vehicles.

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