Thursday, October 07, 2010

Alphabe Thursday - "C" is for Carmen ( Miranda, That Is ) - October 7, 2010

Alphabe Thursday - "C" is for Carmen ( Miranda, That Is ) - October 7, 2010

Back in Columbus, Georgia, when my mother was in the late stages of her pregnancy
with me, Carmen Miranda was one of her favorite actresses. singers and dancers. 
I remember listening to records of her and even went with my mother to see several
of her films.  As a little girl, I would play dress up and tie a basket of fruit on my head
and try to dance to her samba tunes, quite unsuccessfully, as apples and bananas
would go rolling all over the floor.

Carmen Miranda, was born in Portugal in 1909 and moved to Brazil with her mother
and sister in 1910, joining her father who had imigrated earlier.  Baptized Maria, her
father called her "Carmen", after his favorite opera.  She loved singing and dancing
from her early years but her father did not want her in show business.  Franklin D.
Roosevelt present her at a White House banquet and she went on to star in thirteen
Hollywood films. 
According to Wikipedia, "By 1946 she was Hollywood's highest-paid entertainer and top female tax payer in the United States,[3] earning more than $200,000 that year, according to IRS records."
Her marriage, in 1947, to American film producer, David Sebastian, lasted only a few
months but his alcoholism precipated her heavy drinking. Sje ultimately became an
amphetamine and barbiturate abuser.
She died, far too young, at the age of 46, having suffered a heart attack during an
evening performance. 

Carmen Miranda is buried in Rio de Janeiro.  She has a star on the Hollywood Walk of
Fame and there is a Carmen Miranda Square in Hollywood, near Grauman's Chinese
Theatre.  She was, apparently, beloved by a great number of people.

I am participating in Jenny Matlock's Alphabe Thursday join in the fun.


  1. Anonymous12:43 AM

    Excellent my friend and thanks for sharing. How wonderful this was to find out about her. I learned something today :) WOOT!!!

  2. I knew she was HUGE...I remember her...but I never knew she made so much money! And that was back when money was actually worth something!

    There's a drawing on my Wed post you might enjoy.

  3. Thank you for sharing about a name I knew of but knew nothing about

  4. I am sorry things didn't go well for her. It sounds like things got rough at the end.

  5. So that is who you were named after!
    Very nice!
    Maggie X

    Nuts in May

  6. That's sad. I never knew she died of a heart attack at such a young age. She was so full of life.


  7. I remember Carmen Miranda, she was so popular! I never quite got the fruit on the head thing, but she certainly was beautiful and exotic!

    Cute c post!

  8. Wow! Very interesting stuff. It's amazing that she was the highest paid entertainer. That does seem like a huge amount of money fr that time! I just barely remember hearing of her!
    Enjoy your day!

  9. It's nice to know you are named after such a famous singer! One of my husband's uncles named his daughter "Sevlle," as his favorite opera was "The Barbier de Seville"

  10. Anonymous4:14 PM

    Thank you for introducing me to a person I did not know before. Please have a good Friday.

  11. I've watched a couple of her movies with my parents over the years. How neat that you were named after her. I think in those days a lot of studio actors had substance abuse problems.

  12. Interesting piece of history. I had forgotten who she was.

  13. I have a niece in school in Columbus, GA!

  14. Hi Carmen, I just caught up on your last few posts-- Congrats to your giveaway winner. I know, having read your book, that she's in for a treat.

    Your name sake had an interesting, but all to short, life. Thanks for sharing.

    Cheers, jj

  15. I can remember trying to dance with a basket of fruit tied to my head with a scarf. I especially remember the bananas, because Mom told me to take good care of them.
    Very interesting namesake you have there, Carmen. I was named after my godmother. I loved her, and she was certainly more exciting than my mother when I was young, but no banana baskets on her head!!

    Kay, Alberta

  16. I used to listen to this song in a Chinese version: Carmen.

    BTW, Have you received your mailing address?

  17. I didn't know of this artist, So sad she died so young. Thanks for sharing all this.

  18. I love how you got your name. I was named after Glynis Johns. My father was her silver service steward on board ship.

  19. Carmen Miranda is one of those names which everyone seems to have heard, but I knew nothing about whatsoever. Thanbks for making me a little more informed today.

  20. Carmen. I've always been intriqued with her but knew little about her. I've always admired your name but somehow I never made that connection.

    Thanks for an interesting stop for this weeks Alphabe-Thursday!

    I love the visual of the basket of fruit tied to your head!

    Thanks for the smile.


  21. That is a lot of money in those days! The woman is talented in many ways!