Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Unsung Hero

Tonight, I am watching West Side Story. Again. What is it about Hollywood musicals? I try not to get drawn in because after all, I think I have seen them all at least a dozen times. But how can I help it? They have it all, light romance, light comedy, beautiful costumes and scenery. And then there's the display of talent: the music, the singing, the dancing. I used to marvel at how lucky some of these beautiful stars were. They had not only beauty and acting talent, but wow, they all seemed to sing like an angel. "Now is that fair?", I'd wonder....

Then one day, I remember thinking how I enjoyed listening to Audrey Hepburn in "My Fair Lady" as much I marveled at Deborah Kerr in "The King and I". I googled their biographies, mainly to find out why, if they had such lovely voices, didn't they do more with a singing career.

Do you know what I found out?

They were dubbed. Yes, dubbed. And it was the same singer for Audrey, Deborah, and Natalie!

Who, you may ask was this unsung singing heroine?

An enormously talented lady named Marni Nixon. I have become a huge fan. It has gotten so I think of them as her movies, and sometimes watch them just for the chance to hear her sing. I don't think any less of Audrey, Deborah, or Natalie. I just think how lucky they were to play the roles and have a nightingale's voice seem to come from them, to the enjoyment of millions.
Oh, swoon, Tony and Maria are out on the balcony singing the duet: "Tonight, tonight, won't be just any night...."
And to think that I could be sitting downstairs with my male-types watching the Military Channel, or Top Gear or Dirtiest Jobs. What a burden it is to be a Hopeless Romantic.
Oh, and one more note: Here's a lady who got it all- beauty, brains and talent.

Rita Moreno

Has won a Grammy, Oscar, Tony, and Emmy. Some stuff, eh?

(And I bet she throws like a girl...)