Cyd Charisse

Dancer, Actor
No less of an icon than Fred Astaire once said about Cyd Charisse, "When you've danced with Cyd, you stay danced with. " And in a sense, that was the legacy of the actress and dancer, whose sinuous style and ... Read more »
Born: 03/08/1922 in Amarillo, Texas, USA

Filmography

Actor (51)

Empire State Building Murders 2008 (Movie)

Vicky Adams (Actor)

Skitch Henderson at 80 1997 - 1998 (TV Show)

Actor

Intimate Portrait: Marilyn Monroe 1995 - 1996 (TV Show)

Actor

Burke's Law 1994 - 1995 (Tv Show)

Actor

Frasier 1995 (Tv Show)

Actor

Inside the Dream Factory 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Actor

Murder, She Wrote 1985 - 1986, 1994 - 1995 (Tv Show)

Actor

Musicals Great Musicals 1995 (Movie)

(Actor)

Cyd Charisse 1993 - 1994 (TV Show)

Actor

That's Entertainment! III 1994 (Movie)

Song performer (Actor)

MGM: When the Lion Roars 1991 - 1992 (TV Show)

Actor

America's Dance Honors 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Actor

You're the Top: The Cole Porter Story 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Actor

The 61st Annual Academy Awards Presentation 1988 - 1989 (TV Show)

Actor

Visioni Privati 1989 (Movie)

(Actor)

Lerner & Loewe: Broadway's Last Romantics 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Actor

Happy Birthday, Hollywood! 1986 - 1987 (TV Show)

Actor

Gene Kelly... An American in Pasadena 1977 - 1978 (TV Show)

Actor

Warlords of Atlantis 1978 (Movie)

Atsil (Actor)

Fol-De-Rol 1971 - 1972 (TV Show)

Actor

Maroc 7 1966 (Movie)

Louise Henderson (Actor)

The Silencers 1965 (Movie)

Sarita (Actor)

The Perry Como Special 1963 - 1964 (TV Show)

Actor

Un, deux, trois, quatre! 1962 (Movie)

Widow (Actor)

Two Weeks in Another Town 1961 (Movie)

Carlotta (Actor)

Party Girl 1958 (Movie)

Dancer (Actor)

Twilight For the Gods 1958 (Movie)

Charlotte King (Actor)

Silk Stockings 1957 (Movie)

Ninotchka (Actor)

Invitation to the Dance 1956 (Movie)

(Actor)

Meet Me in Las Vegas 1956 (Movie)

Maria Corvier (Actor)

It's Always Fair Weather 1955 (Movie)

Jackie Leighton (Actor)

Brigadoon 1954 (Movie)

Fiona Campbell (Actor)

Deep in My Heart 1954 (Movie)

Guest Star (Actor)

Easy to Love 1953 (Movie)

Herself (Actor)

The Band Wagon 1953 (Movie)

Gabrielle Gerard (Actor)

Singin' in the Rain 1952 (Movie)

Dancer (Actor)

The Kissing Bandit 1948 (Movie)

(Actor)

Words and Music 1948 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Harvey Girls 1945 (Movie)

(Actor)

Mission to Moscow 1942 (Movie)

(Actor)

Something to Shout About 1942 (Movie)

(Actor)

Portrait of an Escort (TV Show)

Actor

Swimsuit (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

No less of an icon than Fred Astaire once said about Cyd Charisse, "When you've danced with Cyd, you stay danced with. " And in a sense, that was the legacy of the actress and dancer, whose sinuous style and breathtaking beauty captivated moviegoers during the 1940s and '50s in classic musicals like "Singin' in the Rain" (1952), "The Band Wagon" (1953) and "Silk Stockings" (1957). Charisse's on-screen visibility grew less frequent with the decline of the Hollywood musical in the late 1950s, though she could be glimpsed in decorative or exotic roles in films and on television for the next four decades before her death in 2008.

Relationships

Lela Finklea

Mother

Nico Charisse

Husband
Began studying dance with him from age of 13

Nicky Charisse

Son
Born 1940 father Nico Charisse

Ernest Finklea

Father

Tony Martin Actor

Husband
Married May 15, 1948 until Charisse's death June 17, 2008

Tony Martin

Son
Born 1950 father Tony Martin

EDUCATION

Began studying ballet at age eight in Amarillo, TX

First studied with dancer Nico Charisse in Los Angeles at age 13

Milestones

1994

Co-hosted the documentary, "That's Entertainment III," a salute to MGM musicals from the late 1920s through the 50s

1991

Made Broadway debut as a replacement for Liliane Montevecchi in the musical, "Grand Hotel"

1976

Published dual autobiography with Tony Martin, The Two of Us

1967

Starred in two TV concert performance specials, "The Cyd Charisse Special" and "Center Stage: Cyd Charisse"

1963

Made her nightclub debut with husband Tony Martin

1959

Hosted the TV variety special, "Meet Cyd Charisse"

1957

Played last starring role, opposite Fred Astaire, in the musical "Silk Stockings"

1953

First female lead, opposite Fred Astaire, in the musical "The Band Wagon"

1952

Achieved star status as Gene Kelly's dance partner in the climactic 'Broadway Melody' number of "Singin' in the Rain"

1951

Played first romantic lead opposite Ricardo Montalban in "Mark of the Renegade"

1951

Lost lead role opposite Gene Kelly in "An American in Paris" because of pregnancy

1949

First dramatic film role in "East Side, West Side"

1948

Offered second lead role in "Easter Parade"; broke leg and role went to Ann Miller

1946

Film acting debut in "The Harvey Girls"

1944

Danced (unbilled) in a ballet around Fred Astaire in "Ziegfeld Follies"

1943

Signed to MGM contract

1942

Offered dancing roles in Gregory Ratoff's "Something to Shout About" and "Mission to Moscow"

1935

Toured the U.S. with Ballet Russe's corp de ballet

Continued for several years thereafter in non-musicals which sometimes included a dance number or two

Moved to Hollywood in her early teens

Toured Europe with the Ballet Russe in the late 1930s

Bonus Trivia

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Credited as Lily Norwood in first film, though in credits of second film, "Mission to Moscow" (1943), both Cyd Charisse and Lili Norwood appear.

.

The name Cyd evolved because her brother couldn't pronounce "Sis"

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On Nov. 9, 2006, in a private White House ceremony, President George W. Bush presented Cyd Charisse with the National Medal of the Arts and Humanities, the highest official U.S. honor available in the arts.

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