This gracious lady started out her career as Miss Pittsburgh 1952 and went on to win a scholarship to the Pennsylvania Playhouse. After borrowing money from her father she set out for New York, promising to return when the money was gone. She never had to keep that promise. Her first audition brought her before the composers Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein; the show was South Pacific and a new star was in the making. Shirley is most remembered nowadays for her role as the singing mother in the 60's TV sitcom "The Partridge Family". Her movies "Oklahoma" and "Music Man" brought her international fame. Even though she is THE nightingale of song, one of Shirley's most notable performances was not as a singer, but as a dramatic actress. At the insistence of Burt Lancaster she won the part of Lulu Bains in the classic movie "Elmer Gantry". This powerful performance resulted in an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in 1960. People say she lives a charmed life, but talent had everything to do with it.
We were fortunate enough to spend some time with her and her husband Marty Ingels while she and Phillip were the guest entertainers aboard the Royal Viking Sun. Marty & Shirley have wonderful opposite traits and complement each other beautifully.
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