$1 Million Reward Offered for Judy Garland’s Stolen Ruby Slippers

An anonymous donor has offered a $1 million reward for credible information leading to the pair of Judy Garland’s sequined, ruby red slippers stolen from a museum in her Minnesota hometown.

The late actress wore the slippers in “The Wizard of Oz.” Three other pairs still exist, including one on display at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington.

John Kelsch, executive director of the Judy Garland Museum in Grand Rapids, Minnesota, says the donor is from Arizona and is a huge fan of Garland and the 1939 movie.

The reward offer requires the exact location of the slippers and the perpetrator’s name.

The 10-year anniversary of the theft is in August. The slippers were insured for $1 million. Kelsch says they could be worth $2 million to $3 million now.

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The spirit of Judy Garland lives on

Judy – The Songbook of Judy Garland
Theatre Royal Brighton
July 7 – July 11

Famously, Judy Garland – an immense talent who endured some of the highest highs and lowest lows of stardom – confronted many challenges in her personal life.

Throughout a 40-year career, however, she retained the unconditional love of millions of fans worldwide.

The highly-acclaimed show Judy – The Songbook of Judy Garland, starring the singer’s daughter Lorna Luft, comes to the Theatre Royal Brighton next month.

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Today marks the 46 year anniversary of Judy Garland’s tragic death in 1969. Nearly five decades on, defining Judy in just a few hundred words still seems like an impossible task. There is a Judy for everyone and throughout her career she sung to us in different ways.

1. ‘Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.’
2. ‘I was born at the age of twelve on an MGM lot.’
3. ‘I can live without money, but I cannot live without love.’
4. ‘In the silence of night I have often wished for just a few words of love from one man, rather than the applause of thousands of people.’
5. ‘I’ve always taken ‘The Wizard of Oz’ very seriously, you know. I believe in the idea of the rainbow. And I’ve spent my entire life trying to get over it.’
6. ‘I’ve never looked through a keyhole without finding someone was looking back.’

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Judy Garland would have turned 93 earlier this month on June 10th, and we are quickly approaching the 46th anniversary of her untimely passing on June 22nd. Proof that a legend never dies, two new works have emerged celebrating her 47 years on this earth, and the rich legacy she has left behind.

Many claim to have known the “real” Judy Garland, and/or claim to have tried to have save and help her. How refreshing it is to happen along someone who actually did know Miss Garland, sans such gross exaggerations. Someone who had the great privilege of being in her company on several occasions. Including her famed London recording sessions, the filming of her final movie and working under the same roof at CBS at the same time. That someone is Joan Beck Coulson, who has authored Always for Judy, Witness to the Joy and Genius of Judy Garland. Just like Glinda, the Good; Joan Beck Coulson floats in, in her (figurative) pink bubble and delivers a refreshing book celebrating Garland’s life.

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Happy birthday to Judy!
June 10, 1922 – June 22, 1969



Legendary Hollywood icon Judy Garland lends her voice alongside Broadway superstar Robert Goulet in the animated movie musical Gay Purr-ee, featuring a score by The Wizard of Oz and A Star is Born musical mastermind Harold Arlen, which is available on DVD from the Warner Archive Collection.

The official description of Gay Purr-ee is as follows: “From the folks that brought us Mr. Magoo comes “Gay Purr-ee,” a stylish and sophisticated animated musical about a group of cats in Paris, France. “The Wizard of Oz” meets “Camelot” in the classic voices of Judy Garland and Robert Goulet, who add another dimension to the clever script by animation masterChuck Jones (“Looney Tunes”) and his wife. The terrific score is by Harold Arlen (“The Wizard of Oz”).”

If you haven’t ordered Gay Purr-ee yet, purchase the DVD on Amazon here.

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Judy Garland is a Hollywood icon.
She’s made herself known with memorable roles such as Dorothy Gale in “The Wizard of Oz” and Hannah Brown in “Easter Parade.”
“Easter Parade” revolves around nightclub performer, Don Hewes played by Fred Astaire, who hires Brown as his chorus girl to cause jealousy in his old partner. He also plans on making Brown a star.

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The prototype dress made for Judy Garland during the classic 1939 film The Wizard of Oz has been put to sale for £180,000. The costume, which was one of the many that were created to determine character Dorothy’s look in the timeless film, and featured the blue and white Gingham pinny, that the producers had stuck with for the final dress design, the Daily Express reported.

Though the dress was actually worn by Garland, who was 17 at the time, on film, she can be seen wearing it on set in several images, which too would be sold alongside the outfit.

Catherine Williamson, head of entertainment at Bonhams, said that the dress, which was an early design of the final one and was sold off by the film studio in the 1970s, had helped create the lasting image of “Dorothy we know and love.” She added that there was a huge demand for Wizard of Oz memorabilia, which were considered “most collectible in the marketplace.”

Meanwhile, the original dress was sold at auction in November 2012 for $480,000 dollars, but another prototype dress sold in 2011 for $910,000.

The auction is set to take place in New York in November 2014.

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Remembering Judy Garland On Stage At Carnegie Hall

It’s been called “the greatest night in show business history.” Judy Garland performed at Carnegie Hall on this day in 1961. There were no flashing lights, no extravagant dance numbers, just Judy.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Next, we have a voice that’s likely been heard in every country on earth. It’s the voice of Judy Garland, who, on this day in 1961, delivered one of her most famous performances.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED PERFORMANCE RECORDING)

JUDY GARLAND: (Singing) A clown with his pants falling down, or the dance that’s a dream of romance, or the scene where the villain is me, that’s entertainment…

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

She’s performing here in Carnegie Hall. There were no flashing lights, no extravagant dance numbers, just Judy. Some audience members were excited, they interrupted her.

(SOUNDBITE OF YELLING)

GARLAND: I know. I’ll sing them all, and we’ll stay all night.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, “SOMEWHERE OVER THE RAINBOW”)

GARLAND: (Singing) Somewhere over the rainbow…

INSKEEP: Judy Garland was making a comeback. She battled drug and alcohol abuse. At the age of 38, she had already had a long concert and film career, including, of course, her role as Dorothy in “The Wizard of Oz.”

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, “SOMEWHERE OVER THE RAINBOW”)

GARLAND: (Singing) …over the rainbow, why then, oh, why can’t I?

MONTAGNE: The recording of that concert received four Grammys, including Album of the Year.

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At 75, ‘The Wizard of Oz’ still works its magic

Dorothy, the Cowardly Lion, the Scarecrow and the Tin Man taking to the Yellow Brick Road — with a dog named Toto tagging along — is among the iconic American images. Their journey began in the mind of fantasy novelist L. Frank Baum, but they’re best remembered for a film that remains a cultural touchstone as it approaches its 75th anniversary.

Indeed, “The Wizard of Oz” (1939) — about a young girl who arrives at the true meaning of home — exudes an enduring magic. Who hasn’t heard the classic response to a profound change in circumstances: “We’re not in Kansas anymore”? Or fantasized about a better life “somewhere over the rainbow”?

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