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Gene Kelly's widow recalls magic of the film 'An American in Paris' as the stage version comes to SoCal

Gene Kelly's widow recalls magic of the film 'An American in Paris' as the stage version comes to SoCal

When Vincente Minnelli’s MGM musical “An American in Paris” premiered Nov. 9, 1951, at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, the star-studded audience basked in the Technicolor delight celebrating love, George and Ira Gershwin’s beloved standards, the romance of dance and winning performances by Gene Kelly and a gamine French newcomer named Leslie Caron.

As far back as 1944’s “Cover Girl,” Kelly had been expanding the language of dance on film as a choreographer. But Kelly took dance on film to another level with an exquisite, sexy, 17-minute-plus ballet sequence set to George Gershwin’s 1928 symphonic poem.

“An American in Paris” went on to win six Oscars including best film —...

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