Mary Virginia Martin, 1 December 1913, Weatherford, Texas, USA, d. 3 November 1990, Rancho Mirage, California, USA. A legendary star of the Broadway musical theatre during the 40s and 50s, and one of its most charming, vivacious and best-loved performers. Her father was a lawyer, and her mother a violin teacher. She took dancing and singing lessons from an early age, married at 16, and eventually ran a dancing school herself before moving to Hollywood where she auditioned constantly at the film studios, and worked in nightclubs and on radio. After being spotted by the producer Laurence Schwab, her first big break came on Broadway in 1938 when she won a secondary role, as Dolly Winslow, in the Cole Porter musical Leave It To Me! Almost every night she stopped the show with her sensational rendering of My Heart Belongs To Daddy while performing a mock striptease perched on top of a large cabin trunk at a Siberian railway station....
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