Billy Rose Theatre Division
Collection is open to the public. Library policy on photography and photocopying will apply. Advance notice may be required.
This collection extensively covers the personal life and professional career of Dorothy Loudon, including materialsrelating to stage, film and television productions, albums,and nightclub performances as well as personal correspondence. The personal files include correspondencewith family and friends, family papers and items from Loudon's childhood and high school years, items pertainingto her husband Norman Paris and their marriage and appointment books and address books. The professional files include materials on Loudon's cabaret/nightclub engagements, awards, tributes, benefits, workshops and albums. The production files include scripts, programs, correspondence, opening night party guest books, publicitymaterials, contracts and notes from film, television and stage productions in which Loudon appeared. These productions are also covered extensively in the scrapbooksLoudon maintained throughout her career. In addition to the production shots in the scrapbooks, there are also personal and family photos and other professional photographs, including headshots, portraits and shots of theater marquees. The sheet music and audio recordings represent Loudon's singing career as a nightclub and recording artist. This collection also includes artifacts,such as costume pieces, framed posters, souvenir gifts from shows and awards. Notable items in this collection include Loudon's correspondence with Michael Bennett, FredEbb, Katharine Hepburn, John Kander, Angela Lansbury, MikeNichols, Harold Prince and Stephen Sondheim; the production shots in her scrapbooks; the costume pieces in the artifacts series; and the rare, unreleased audio recordings of live performances in the audio visual materials series.
Dorothy Loudon (1925-2003) was a singer, comedienne and Tony Award-winning actress, who appeared in supper clubs, television shows, films, summer stock and on Broadway. Born in Boston, she moved to Manhattan in the early 1950s, working as a nightclub singer and eventually headlining at such clubs as Jimmy Ryan's, The Blue Angel and the Persian Room of the Plaza Hotel. She sang with Louis Armstrong and toured in concert with Ray Bolger and George Burns. Loudon made her first appearance on the legitimate stage in the 1962 Off-Broadway production of The World of Jules Feiffer, directed by Mike Nichols. Her first Broadway show was the 1962 musical Nowhere to Go butUp directed by Sidney Lumet and her first Tony nomination was for her performance in the 1969 musical, The Fig Leaves are Falling, directed by George Abbott. Loudon's big break came in 1977 when her campy performance as Miss Hannigan in the 1977 blockbuster Annie, garnered her Tony,Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle awards for best performance by an actress in a musical and catapulted her to stardom. This was followed by Michael Bennett's Ballroom, for which she received a Tony Award nomination. In 1980 she was chosen to succeed Angela Lansbury as Mrs. Lovett in Stephen Sondheim's Tony Award-winning musical Sweeney Todd. In 1985 she co-starred with Chita Rivera andLeslie Uggams in Jerry's Girls, a revue of Jerry Herman songs. In 1981 she co-starred with Katharine Hepburn in The West Side Waltz on Broadway and on tour and had another smash hit in Michael Frayn's farce Noises Off (1983.) Loudon released cabaret albums, such as Broadway Baby (1986), Saloon (1991) and Something to Remember Me By(2003) and made numerous concert appearances.
Controlled Access Terms
- Popular music.
- Singers -- United States.
- Musical theater -- New York (State) -- New York.
- Theater -- United States -- History -- 20th century.
- Women singers.
- Television actors and actresses.
- Sound recordings.
- Video recordings.
Additional Creator Names
- Bennett, Michael, 1943 Apr. 8-1987.
- Ebb, Fred.
- Hepburn, Katharine, 1907-2003.
- Kander, John.
- Lansbury, Angela, 1925-
- Nichols, Mike.
- Prince, Harold, 1928-
- Sondheim, Stephen.