She lit up movie screens in ANYTHING GOES with Bing Crosby and Donald O'Connor, THE JOKER IS WILD with Frank Sinatra, LES GIRLS, THERE'S NO BUSINESS LIKE SHOW BUSINESS with Ethel Merman and Marilyn Monroe, Rodgers & Hammerstein's SOUTH PACIFIC, HAPPY ANNIVERSARY with David Niven and SURPRISE PACKAGE with Noel Coward. And Mitzi Gaynor wearing Bob Mackie originals in her CBS specials -- now THAT'S entertainment. Yes, I've been a fan a long, long time. I even saw her onstage once in her one-woman show. Not only was it great fun, it was a lesson in show biz artistry.
Mitzi Gaynor made a sold-out, packed audience feel as if we were all in her living room watching her perform at a party. Her ability to connect with that quality of intimacy and warmth was amazing to experience. When I lived in New York City in the Chelsea section of town, early in October following the September 11th attacks, I rented SOUTH PACIFIC from my nearby video store. Hearing her sing "A Cockeyed Optimist" helped my spirits to refresh and resurrect. She made me feel as though it was alright to smile again.