I did a double take when I saw an article indicating the passings of the Classic Hollywood musical starlet Gloria DeHaven. She was 91. I could have sworn I just was thinking about her recently and I was. Just last week I came across her in a publicity still with two other young stars who I’ve since forgotten. The three of them were sitting at a table at some gala and they were unfamiliar but in that image DeHaven left an impression on me.
So being the good historian that I am, I quickly scrolled to her filmography and Summer Stock (1950) was the film that stuck out to me. I’ve seen bits and pieces of the Kelly/Garland musical but DeHaven is in that film too. Without giving it much thought, I pushed the musical up higher in my mental queue so I would eventually get a chance to see this actress who was still with us. After all, the stars are getting fewer and fewer as reflected by Wikipedia’s handy page. It’s sad really.
And this brings me to the realization once more that although it may be sad when we lose another star, in this case, I felt like I had just met Gloria DeHaven, it is rather extraordinary that with stars past and present we have film rolls that will keep their personas alive for years to come. Time is a curious thing. Because as it marches on people are forgotten and history is lost. But that makes the transcendence of film pretty remarkable.
I look forward to hopefully getting to know you better Ms. DeHaven. My watchlist now includes Thousands Cheer, Summer Stock and yet another viewing of Modern Times (apparently she plays the Gamine’s sister). I already have a deeper appreciation for her.
R.I.P. Gloria DeHaven.