Kathryn Grayson

Once upon a hollywood time, talent scouts searched for pretty girls who could read lines, play comedy and sing ... opera. The girlish Deanna Durbin established the recipe in the late 1930s; Kathryn Grayson, who died Feb. 17 at 88 in Los Angeles, perfected it by adding a saucy sex appeal. For more than a decade, from Thousands Cheer in 1943 to The Vagabond King in 1956, she was the leading soprano at MGM and one of its top stars.

Legend has it that as a 12-year-old in St. Louis, Mo., Grayson, born Zelma Kathryn Hedrick, was discovered singing on the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!