The term "triple threat" denotes a very special type of performer. It's what is used to describe the ultimate "all rounder" - the performer that can act, sing and dance. Triple threats are highly desirable if not, preferable in today's theatre scene, however, even in cinema and film, it is always advantageous to be proficient at all avenues. Listed below are some of the greatest triple threats that have ever lived. They have won multiple awards - not just accolades for their work in film, but also for their capacity to both sing and dance.
Born Frances Ethel Gumm on the 10th June 1922, Judy Garland will forever be considered one of the greatest and most tragic of all Hollywood starlets. A silver screen star, her claim to fame was her appearance as the young Dorothy in "The Wizard of Oz"(1939). What followed was a supreme pairing with the one and only Micky Rooney - the duo dancing and singing in many films together. Whilst Judy entertained audiences with a vast array of musicals, there was no denying her talent - she was a great actress, an incredible singer with such a recognizable and mature voice and she could dance - and dance quite well. Nominated twice for a Golden Globe and winning a Golden Globe for her performance in "A Star is Born"(1954), recipient of the Cecil B. DeMille Award, three-time Emmy nominated, she was also nominated for a BAFTA in 1956 and twice nominated for an Oscar. Judy Garland's record, "Judy Garland at Carnegie Hall" earned her five Grammy Awards and she remained at the top of the Billboards in 1961 for two months. In 1952, she even won an honorary Tony Award for her contribution to Vaudeville style theatre. Judy Garland's contribution to music, theatre and film was immense and her influence can still be felt today. Her melodical rendition of "Over the Rainbow" will forever be her signature piece, though she will always be remembered for being truly great.
Julie Andrews is the ultimate triple threat. With a freakish but beautiful four-octave voice, her claim to fame was the musical "Mary Poppins"(1964) to which she won an Oscar for her performance. That film displayed Julie's capacity to hold an audience not just from her incredibly beautiful voice but her capacity to act and dance. Prior to the success of "Mary Poppins"(1964) Julie made her debut on Broadway, making her mark in the 1956 musical "My Fair Lady" playing Eliza Doolittle. This musical made her a star of the stage even before she made it to the big screen. Her next big hit in film came with the all-too-recognizable "The Sound of Music"(1965). Songs from the 1965 hit are still sung today and the influence of this musical on pop culture can still be felt - cartoons often parody the Von Trapp Family. Julie Andrews career on Broadway and film serve as text book lessons for those aspirant performers that one day hope to follow in her footsteps. She still appears in films and television to this day.
Fred Astaire is remembered more for his dancing, however the light-footed Austrian could sing and act. He entered show business at the age of five performing with his sister Adele Astaire. His first film was "Dancing Lady"(1933) and that was quickly followed by "Flying down to Rio"(1933) to which he starred with Ginger Rogers. Then the legend of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers was born. The couple were screen-equals. Both matched each other in dance and became a signature pair. They appeared in nine films together. During the years of 1945-1947, Mr. Astaire opened his own dance school, The Fred Astaire Dance Studios. He returned to the screen in the 1950s appearing in films such as "Funny Face"(1957) opposite Audrey Hepburn. Multi-Golden Globe Award winner and recipient of the Cecil B. DeMille award he was also the founder of Ava Records. It is no surprise that the dancing-man had his legs insured for a million dollars...
She is the daughter of the great Judy Garland, so it is no surprise that blessed with those performer genes, Liza Minnelli can hold her own on the stage and in film. Liza is a dual-Oscar winner and Tony Award winner. Her first Oscar was for her performance in "The Sterile Cuckoo" (1968) and her second Oscar was for her seductive and memorable performance as Sally Bowles in the hit musical "Cabaret"(1972). In 1990 she was awarded a Grammy Legend Award. Recently more known in the tabloids for her many marriages and health issues, Liza Minnelli is a legend in her own right. Whilst she suffered comparisons between herself and her mother during her early career, it is safe to say that this woman did more than prove that she was capable of succeeding without the Garland name...