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Mother Wore Tights

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Mother Wore Tights (1947) starring Betty Grable, Dan Dailey, Mona Freeman, Connie Marshall
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Mother Wore Tights (1947) starring Betty Grable, Dan Dailey, Mona Freeman, Connie Marshall

Dan Dailey and Betty Grable star as a young man and woman, whom team up as performers during the age of vaudeville and soon fall in love. Mother Wore Tights story of their rise to fame, and the subsequent professional and personal setbacks, is told in flashback and set against a rousing musical score.


Frank the headliner meets Myrtle the chorus girl in "Mother Wore Tights"

Mother Wore Tights is a very sweet tale of a vaudeville couple’s life story. It’s told in back flash, by one of their daughters, Mikie. It begins with the young lady stumbling into a job as a chorus girl. It goes on from there, as she meets the show’s “top banana”, fights with him, falls in love, and get married. Then, come the children …

It’s a fun, enjoyable musical with lots of great performances. Mother Wore Tights is the story of a couple that become a family, and the conflicts and stresses that come with raising a family. It’s very enjoyable, and I recommend it highly.

Rating: 4 out of 5.


The family in "Mother Wore Tights" - Betty Grable, Dan Dailey
  • Betty Grable (Sweet Rosie O’Grady) … Myrtle McKinley. The sweet young girl who stumbles into vaudeville. She soon falls for Frank. Initially they don’t quite get along. But after a whirlwind courtship, they get married. Then come the children. And all throughout their lives together, they’re entertainers. Because they both love to entertain.
  • Dan Dailey (Panama Hattie) … Frank Burt. The entertainer, who falls for Myrtle. Although he initially alienates her with his “big show” attitude, she gradually softens to him. They become a duet after a time.
  • Mona Freeman (Jumping Jacks) … Iris, their older daughter. In her teen years, at an exclusive boarding school, she’s embarrassed by her parents’ occupation. Until …
  • Connie Marshall (Mr. Blandings Builds his Dream House) … Mikie, the younger daughter.
  • Robert Arthur (Twelve O’Clock High) … Bob Clarkman. Iris’ first boyfriend at the boarding school
  • Sara Allgood (Between Two Worlds) … Grandmother McKinley. The girls stay with her for months at a time, while Myrtle & Frank are off performing. Until one Christmas …

Secondary characters

Mother Wore Tights (1947) starring Betty Grable, Dan Dailey, Mona Freeman, Connie Marshall
  • William Frawley (I Love Lucy) … Mr. Schneider. The fellow running the theater where Myrtle is first hired. And where Frank is already the headliner.
  • Vanessa Brown … Bessie
  • Ruth Nelson … Miss Ridgeway
  • Anabel Shaw (Shock) … Alice Flemmerhammer
  • Stephen Dunne (Hand of Death) … Roy Bivins
  • George Cleveland (Angel on my Shoulder) … Grandfather McKinley
  • Veda Ann Borg (Mildred Pierce) … Rosemary Olcott
  • Sig Ruman (A Night in Casablanca) … Papa. When the family vacations at a resort, he’s one of the other people there. Who doesn’t like show people. Until …
  • Lee Patrick (Visit to a Small Planet) … Lil
  • Señor Wences … Señor Wences. The famous ventriloquist has an extended scene, entertaining the daughters when they unexpectedly arrive on Christmas. So does A. Robbins the Banana Man..


  • M-O-T-H-E-R (A Word That Means the World to Me).
  • Daddy, You’ve Been a Mother to Me.
  • Burlington Bertie from Bow. You Do.
  • This Is My Favorite City.
  • We’re a Couple of Broadway Brothers.
  • Kokomo, Indiana.
  • Silent Night, Holy Night.
  • The Mountain. Written and Performed by Señor Wences
  • Tra-La-La-La.
  • Lily of the Valley.
  • Swinging Down the Lane.
  • Stumbling.
  • There’s Nothing Like a Song.
  • (Rolling Down Bowling Green) On a Little Two-Seat Tandem.
  • Fare-Thee-Well, Dear Alma Mater.
  • At a Georgia Camp Meeting.
  • Put Your Arms Around Me, Honey (I Never Knew Any Girl Like You).

Editorial review of Mother Wore Tights courtesy of

In this chronicle of a vaudeville family, Myrtle McKinley (class of 1900) goes to San Francisco to attend business school, but ends up in a chorus line. Soon, star Frank Burt notices her talent, hires her for a “two-act”, then marries her. Incidents of the marriage and the growing pains of eldest daughter Miriam are followed, interspersed with nostalgic musical numbers.

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