Cummings in 1934
Constance Cummings Halverstadt
May 15, 1910
Seattle, Washington, U.S.
|Died||November 23, 2005 95) (aged|
Oxfordshire, England, United Kingdom
|Spouse(s)||Benn Levy (1933–1973; his death); 2 children|
Constance Cummings, CBE (May 15, 1910 –November 23, 2005), born Constance Cummings Halverstadt, was an American-born British actress, known for her work on both screen and stage.
Cummings was born in Seattle, Washington, the only daughter and younger childof Kate Logan (née Cummings), a concert soprano, and Dallas Vernon Halverstadt, a lawyer. After her parents separated when she was 10 years old, she never saw her father. She attended St. Nicholas Girls' School in Seattle.
Seattle is a seaport city on the West Coast of the United States. It is the seat of King County, Washington. With an estimated 730,000 residents as of 2018, Seattle is the largest city in both the state of Washington and the Pacific Northwest region of North America. According to U.S. Census data released in 2018, the Seattle metropolitan area’s population stands at 3.87 million, and ranks as the 15th largest in the United States. In July 2013, it was the fastest-growing major city in the United States and remained in the Top 5 in May 2015 with an annual growth rate of 2.1%. In July 2016, Seattle was again the fastest-growing major U.S. city, with a 3.1% annual growth rate. Seattle is the northernmost large city in the United States.
The San Diego Stock Company gave Cummings her initial acting opportunity in a "walk-on part" playing a prostitute in a 1926 production of Seventh Heaven.
She debuted on Broadway as a chorus girl,a member of the ensemble in Treasure Girl (1928) by the age of 18.
While appearing on Broadway, she was discovered by Samuel Goldwyn, who brought her to Hollywood in 1931. Between 1931 and 1934, Cummings appeared in more than 20 films, including the Harold Lloyd films Movie Crazy and American Madness , directed by Frank Capra.
Samuel Goldwyn, also known as Samuel Goldfish, was a Polish-American film producer. He was most well known for being the founding contributor and executive of several motion picture studios in Hollywood. His awards include the 1973 Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMille Award, the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award in 1947, and the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award in 1958.
Harold Clayton Lloyd Sr. was an American actor, comedian, director, producer, screenwriter, and stunt performer who is best known for his silent comedy films.
Movie Crazy is a 1932 American Pre-Code comedy film starring Harold Lloyd in his third sound feature.
She was married to the playwright and screenwriter Benn Levy from July 3, 1933 [ citation needed ]until his death in 1973. As Levy was from Britain, Cummings moved there and continued acting, both in films and on the stage, in Britain. Few of her films were hits in the US, although Blithe Spirit , adapted from the Noël Coward play, was popular. Levy went on to write and direct films for Cummings, such as The Jealous God (1939); he also served in the UK Parliament from 1945-50 as the Labour MP for Eton and Slough. They had a son and a daughter.
Benn Wolfe Levy was a Labour Party Member of Parliament in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, and a successful playwright. He was educated at Repton School and University College, Oxford and served in uniform in both World Wars.
Blithe Spirit is a 1945 British fantasy-comedy film directed by David Lean. The screenplay by Lean, cinematographer Ronald Neame and associate producer Anthony Havelock-Allan is based on producer Noël Coward's 1941 play of the same name, the title of which is derived from the line "Hail to thee, blithe Spirit! Bird thou never wert" in the poem "To a Skylark" by Percy Bysshe Shelley.
Sir Noël Peirce Coward was an English playwright, composer, director, actor and singer, known for his wit, flamboyance, and what Time magazine called "a sense of personal style, a combination of cheek and chic, pose and poise".
She played Mary Tyrone in the Royal National Theatre's production of Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey into Night opposite Laurence Olivier, and later recreated the role for television. She also originated the role of Martha in Edward Albee's Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf in its London debut.[ citation needed ]
In 1979, Cummings won the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for her performance as Emily Stilson in the drama Wings (1978–79) (written by Arthur Kopit), a play about a former aviator (Stilson) who has suffered a stroke, from which she struggles to recover.This role also brought her Obie and Drama Desk awards and an Olivier nomination. In 1982, she was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actress in a Play for her work in The Chalk Garden.
She received an Evening Standard Best Actress Award for her performance in Long Day's Journey into Night.
On January 1, 1974, Cummings, who resided in Britain for many decades until her death, was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for her contributions to the British entertainment industry.
She was a committee member of the Royal Court Theatre and the Arts Council. She has a star in the Motion Pictures section on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6201 Hollywood Boulevard. It was dedicated on February 8, 1960.
Constance Cummings Levy died in Oxfordshire, England, on November 23, 2005, aged 95,from natural causes.
|1926||Seventh Heaven||prostitute||Stage debut in Seattle, WA|
|1928||Treasure Girl||chorus ensemble||Musical comedy||Broadway debut|
|1930||June Moon||Miss Rixey||Tin Pan Alley comedy|
|1930||This Man's Town||Carrie||Drama|
|1934||Sour Grapes||first appearance on London stage.|
|1934||Accent on Youth||Linda Brown||Comedy|
|1936||Young Madame Conti||Nella Conti||Melodrama|
|1937||Madame Bovary Revival||Emma Bovary||Restoration Comedy|
|1938||If I Were You||Nellie Blunt||Farce|
|1938||Goodbye, Mr Chips||Katherine||Drama|
|1939||The Jealous God|
|1939–1940||Romeo and Juliet||Juliet||Tragedy|
|1939–1940||Old Vic Theatre Season|
|1939||Joan of Arc||Joan||Drama|
|1939||The Good Natur'd Man||Miss Richland||Drama|
|April 22, 1940||Shakespeare Birthday Festival|
|1943||The Petrified Forest||Gabby||Drama|
|1945||One Man Show||Racine Gardner||Drama|
|1948||Don't Listen Ladies||Farce|
|1949||Before the Party||Laura||Comedy|
|1950||Return to Tyassi|
|1957||The Rape of the Belt||Antiope||played at Piccadilly Theatre (1957), and then Martin Beck Theatre, NY (1960).<ref> "Obituary of Constance Cummings". November 26, 2006. Retrieved June 1, 2017.|
|1965||Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?||Martha|
|1966||Public and Confidential|
|1967||Fallen Angels||Jane Banbury||Comedy|
|1969||The Milk Train Doesn't Stop Here Anymore||Mrs Flora Goforth||Tragedy|
|1970||The Visit||Claire Zachanassian||Tragi-comedy|
|1971||Amphitryon 38||Leda||Greek Drama|
|1971||Long Day's Journey into Night||Mary Tyrone|
|1971–1972||National Theatre, London, Repertoire Season||Classical drama|
|1972–1973||National Theatre, London, Repertoire Season|
|1973||The Cherry Orchard||Madame Ranevsky|
|1974||National Theatre, London, Repertoire Season|
|1979||Wings||Emily Stilson||Tony Award, Obie Award, Drama Desk Award|
|1979||National Theatre, London, Repertoire Season|
|1981||The Golden Age|
|1985||The Glass Menagerie|
|1986||Fanny Kemble at Home|
|1992||The Chalk Garden||Mrs St Maugham||Her last appearance on Broadway|
|1996–1999||Uncle Vanya||Maman||Her last stage appearance.|
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