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Summary Article: Day, Doris
From Chambers Biographical Dictionary


Doris Mary Ann von Kappelhoff


♦ US singer and film actress

Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, she was a vocalist with several big bands and a radio favourite before she made her film debut in Romance on the High Seas (1948). Her sunny personality, singing talent and girl-next-door image enlivened many standard Warner Brothers musicals of the 1950s. More satisfying material followed with Calamity Jane (1953), Young at Heart (1954) and The Pajama Game (1957). A top-selling recording artist, she was also able to show her dramatic talent in Storm Warning (1950) and Love Me or Leave Me (1955). The popularity of the comedy Pillow Talk (1959) earned her an Academy Award nomination and a further career as the perennial virgin in a series of frothy farces where she was often partnered by Rock Hudson. She retired from the screen after With Six You Get Egg Roll (1968), but appeared occasionally on television and also in The Doris Day Show (1968-73). Thereafter she devoted herself to animal welfare, setting up the Doris Day Animal League in 1987. Her autobiography, Doris Day, Her Own Story (1976), revealed much of the turmoil beneath her apparently carefree vivacity. She received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2004 and in 2008 was awarded a Grammy for lifetime achievement.

© Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd 2011

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