Friday, 28 October 2011
Sheridan Morley, one of her biographers, shrewdly put her presence down to her compassion and, to my mind, in saying this, he half draws back the curtain on 'It'. I also think (and it has to come from sound recordings), that she had extraordinary senses of timing, irony and wry humour. The recordings show how she could bring her audience onto her side; see her point of view and like her. That George and Ira Gershwin wrote Someone To Watch Over Me for her also says something; not to mention all the Coward songs and plays, written for her to perform. Here she is singing it a year before she died.
Maybe I am just a sentimentalist - but I don't think that anyone could ever sing it better than she:
My favourite story about her is that, after she was bankrupted over her wildly extravagant spending habits, she bought a house in England but then went to live in America. Her agent asked her whether this was sensible. Her response was to ask him to look into the cost of installing a swimming pool.
Posted by NJS at 06:32