Suffering from the rainy day blues? We’ve got you covered!
As told by Cynthia and Sara Brideson in the new biography, He’s Got Rhythm, Gene Kelly was one of the brightest stars in the world of Hollywood dance musicals. From tap dancing on roller-skates, to creating rhythms with a squeaky floorboard, to collaborating with dance legend Fred Astaire, Gene was a creative genius and a master of his craft.
These iconic song and dance numbers are guaranteed to put a “smile on your face” and have you “laughing at the clouds”:
1. “I Like Myself” from It’s Always Fair Weather (1955)
In this unforgettable number, Gene provides one of his most energetic and entertaining performances, and proves that he can hoof it even when wearing roller-skates!
2. “The Babbitt And The Bromide” from Ziegfeld Follies (1946)
Two legends of American dance go head-to-head in this Gershwin brothers number from Ziegfeld Follies. In a classic sketch of friendly one-upmanship, the technical perfection of Fred Astaire meets the easy grace of Gene Kelly. This was the only time Astaire and Kelly appeared together on film in the prime of their careers.
3. “I Got Rhythm” from An American in Paris (1951)
Gene oozes charm in this clip from the Academy Award winning An American in Paris, as he taps and sings a classic jazz tune while teaching French children a few words of English.
4. “Squeaky Floor Routine” from Summer Stock (1950)
In what Kelly himself would later call his favorite solo routine, he creates a dance inspired by the environment in which it takes place. Employing a squeaky floorboard and an old newspaper as the basis for his rhythm, Gene displays his remarkable ability to explore a space through dance.
5. “Singin’ In The Rain” from Singin’ in the Rain (1952)
“From where I stand the sun is shining all over the place.”
In perhaps the most iconic number in any Hollywood musical, Gene taps and splashes his way through a California downpour and right into film history.
To read the stories behind these and many other iconic Gene Kelly films, check out the newly released He’s Got Rhythm: The Life and Career of Gene Kelly. In the first comprehensive biography written since the legendary star’s death, authors Cynthia Brideson and Sara Brideson disclose new details of Kelly’s complex life. Not only do they examine his contributions to the world of entertainment in depth, but they also consider his political activities—including his opposition to the Hollywood blacklist. Drawing on previously untapped articles and interviews with Kelly’s wives, friends, and colleagues, Brideson and Brideson illuminate new and unexpected aspects of the actor’s life and work. He’s Got Rhythm is a balanced and compelling view of one of the screen’s enduring legends.