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Debbie Reynolds Collection

She stumbled into show business after winning the Ms Burbank contest and had one of the longest careers in Hollywood.

9 old time radio show recordings
(total playtime 4 hours, 11 min)
available in the following formats:

1 MP3 CD
or
6 Audio CDs


Choose your CD format
or order disks individually: Add to Cart
Play a sample episode from August 23, 1952:

"Stars Over Hollywood: First Man She Met"



... or click here to save the Mp3 file to your computer

About this Old Time Radio Show

Text on OTRCAT.com ©2001-2017 OTRCAT INC All Rights Reserved. Reproduction is prohibited.

Debbie Reynolds & Gene Kelly

A common theme you will run across when you are looking at starlets from the Golden Age of Hollywood is how much they wanted to be in the movies and how hard they worked to get there. Of course, there are exceptions. Debbie Reynolds is a case in point.

A native of El Paso, Texas, born Mary Frances Reynolds in 1932, was the second daughter of a carpenter working for the Southern Pacific Railroad. In 1939, her father’s work took the family to Burbank, California. Ms. Reynolds was a bit of a tomboy who grew up in a religious home was active in the girl scouts and wanted to be a gym teacher. Even though Burbank is home to a number of studios which had outgrown Hollywood, getting into the movies never entered her head, but on a lark she joined the Miss Burbank contest as a teenager. To her surprise, she won the contest (She revealed in a 2013 interview “I’m very proud to say I was Miss Burbank and had a hole in my swimming suit and my rear end was hanging out and I didn’t have shoes, high-heeled shoes… I’m very grateful for stumbling into show business.”)

Since she had been crowned Miss Burbank, Warner Brothers offered her a contract and a new first name (in a 1953 interview she said she hoped to be labeled Peggy, Patches, Lindy, Saucy or Candy, but the studio wanted Debbie). During her first two months at the studio, Debbie was busy with acting, dancing and singing lessons, but when the Depression hit the studio let all the instructors go and life on the lot became boring. She was only in a single picture at Warner Brothers, The Daughter of Rosie O’Grady (1950). After a year she was released from her contract and was ready to go back to school to pursue a teaching degree.

Her agent, Al Melnick, was not so ready to give up on Debbie’s career. He heard that MGM needed a girl to do an imitation of the “boop-oop-a-doop” girl, flapper Helen Kane for the musical The Little Words (1950). Reynolds lip-synched the song, but the three minute bit made a big impression, and MGM called her back for a series of formulaic musicals, including Two Weeks in Love (1950) which included Debbie’s hit song “Aba Daba Honeymoon”. The record was a Top Three hit, and earned enough money to install a swimming pool at the Reynolds’ Burbank home.

Debbie PoolIn 1952, Debbie got her big break when she was selected to costar with Gene Kelly and Donald O’Connor. The studio had planned to place Judy Garland, Jane Powell, Leslie Caron or June Allyson in the part, Gene Kelly and director Stanley Donen insisted that fresh-faced Debbie Reynolds was just the type needed for the role. Debbie was not a dancer, and perfectionist Kelly kept her on the set doing retakes until literally her feet bled from dancing.

In 1951, Debbie was entertaining the soldiers at Walter Reed Army Hospital where she met crooner Eddie Fisher, who was also on a USO tour. Early in 1954, Eddie paid a visit to Debbie on the MGM lot and they began dating. Debbie became Mrs. Eddie Fisher in 1955, and the couple co starred in Bundle of Joy (1956) which was filmed while the Fisher’s were expecting their own bundle of joy, Carrie Fisher, who would grow up to be Princess Leia in the original Star Wars trilogy. Todd Fisher was born in 1958. Little Todd was named for Eddie’s best friend, producer Mike Todd, who was Elizabeth Taylor’s third husband. Fisher had been the best man when Todd and Taylor were married, and Debbie a bridesmaid.

A month after little Todd was born, Mike Todd was killed in a plane crash. As a friend, Eddie did his best to comfort Elizabeth Taylor, and wound up falling in love with the violet-eyed temptress. Debbie was the last to find out about the affair. Eddie was supposedly out on tour, and Debbie decided to call Liz in her hotel room. To her shock, Fisher answered the phone. Eddie told Debbie that “I’m sorry… Elizabeth and I are in love and I want a divorce.” Reynolds warned him that Taylor would tire of him and throw him out, and she did. After winning the 1960 Oscar for Best Actress in Butterfield 8 (which co starred Fisher, whom the Harvard Lampoon awarded Worst Supporting Actor), Liz would meet husband five, Richard Burton, on the set of Cleopatra (1963).

Debbie Reynolds, divorced with two kids, began headlining in Las Vegas along with her movie work. She married businessman Harry Karl in 1960, appeared in How the West Was Won in 1963, and was nominated for Best Actress in The Unsinkable Molly Brown (1964). About the time she was making Divorce American Style (1967) with Dick Van Dyke, Karl took her for a cruise on the liner Queen Elizabeth. What she didn’t know until embarking was that Liz Taylor was on the same boat, traveling with the Burtons. Debbie sent a note to Liz’s room saying that it was silly to continue feuding now that they were both remarried, and Liz sent Debbie a note saying they should get together at dinner (the stewards carrying the notes probably crossed paths in the passageway).

Unfortunately, Debbie’s multi-millionaire husband, Harry Karl, managed to gamble away a $50 million fortune. Debbie was facing bankruptcy when they divorced in 1973. The same year, she made her Broadway debut in the revival of Irene, and was nominated for a Tony. In 1983, she reprised her role as The Unsinkable Molly Brown on the stage. In January, 2015, Ms. Reynolds was given a Life Achievement Award by the Screen Actors Guild. Daughter Carrie Fisher made the presentation.

A Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6654 Hollywood Blvd honors Debbie Reynolds’ work in Motion Pictures. Eddie Fisher has Stars at 6241 Hollywood Blvd for Recording and 1724 Vine St for Television. Elizabeth Taylor’s Star for Motion Pictures is at 6336 Hollywood Blvd.

Text on OTRCAT.com ©2001-2017 OTRCAT INC All Rights Reserved. Reproduction is prohibited.

These classic recordings are available in the following formats:
  • MP3 CDs are delivered by mail. These archival quality MP3 CDs are playable in your computer and many MP3 player devices.



    9 recordings on 1 MP3 CD for just $5.00
    total playtime 4 hours, 11 min
    Add MP3 Collection to Cart

    Click here to see disc contents


      9 shows - total playtime 4 hours 11 minutes
      1. Best Of All 550307 30 Hit Deck.mp3
      2. Ft 490216 105 God And Red Scooter.mp3
      3. Have Gun Will Travel 590920 044 Stardust.mp3
      4. Howard Miller Show 570820 Debbie Reynolds.mp3
      5. Lux Radio Theater 491128 678 Key Largo.mp3
      6. Martin And Lewis Show 530526 106 Debbie Reynolds.mp3
      7. Mgm Studio Orchestra And Chorus Debbie Reynolds.mp3
      8. Stars Over Hollywood 520823 41 First Man She Met.mp3
      9. Stars Over Hollywood 540220 664 Grand Gesture.mp3
  • MP3 downloads are available instantly after purchase!



    9 recordings on 1 MP3 Collection Download for just $5.00
    total playtime 4 hours, 11 min
    Add MP3 Collection to Cart

    Click here to see disc contents


      9 shows - total playtime 4 hours 11 minutes
      1. Best Of All 550307 30 Hit Deck.mp3
      2. Ft 490216 105 God And Red Scooter.mp3
      3. Have Gun Will Travel 590920 044 Stardust.mp3
      4. Howard Miller Show 570820 Debbie Reynolds.mp3
      5. Lux Radio Theater 491128 678 Key Largo.mp3
      6. Martin And Lewis Show 530526 106 Debbie Reynolds.mp3
      7. Mgm Studio Orchestra And Chorus Debbie Reynolds.mp3
      8. Stars Over Hollywood 520823 41 First Man She Met.mp3
      9. Stars Over Hollywood 540220 664 Grand Gesture.mp3
  • Standard Audio CDs are delivered by mail on archival quality media with up to 60 minutes on each CD and play in all CD players



    9 recordings on 6 Audio CDs
    total playtime 4 hours, 11 min

    Disc A001

    1. Mgm Studio Orchestra And Chorus Debbie Reynolds
    2. Ft 490216 105 God And Red Scooter

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Disc A002

    1. Lux Radio Theater 491128 678 Key Largo

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Disc A003

    1. Stars Over Hollywood 520823 41 First Man She Met
    2. Martin And Lewis Show 530526 106 Debbie Reynolds

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Disc A004

    1. Stars Over Hollywood 540220 664 Grand Gesture

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Disc A005

    1. Best Of All 550307 30 Hit Deck
    2. Howard Miller Show 570820 Debbie Reynolds

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Disc A006

    1. Have Gun Will Travel 590920 044 Stardust

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00