Jane Powell, Star of ‘Seven Brides for Seven Brothers,’ Passes Away At 92

jane powell

Powell in "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers"

Actress Jane Powell, best known for "A Date With Judy," "Royal Wedding" and "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers," died Thursday. She was 92.

She was born Suzanne Lorraine Burce on April 1, 1929, in Portland, OR, to Paul and Eileen Burce. In 1943, she won a spot on a radio talent show in Los Angeles. Powell emerged from a troubled childhood to find a spot in MGM's stable of child stars, doing a string of plucky love-struck teen roles in B-musicals of the late 1940s and early 1950s, according to her TCM bio.

The Burces moved to L.A., where she attended the studio's Little Red Schoolhouse, renowned for teaching its famed stable of child stars like Temple, Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland, but she won little work and initially felt isolated and depressed.

She eventually secured the lead in the 1954 film adaptation of "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers."

Her film repertoire included: "Song of the Open Road" (1944), "Delightfully Dangerous" (1945), "Holiday in Mexico," "Three Daring Daughters" (1948), "A Date with Judy" (1948), co-starring Elizabeth Taylor, "Luxury Liner" (1948), "Nancy Goes to Rio" (1950) and "Two Weeks With Love" (1950).

She also starred in, "Royal Wedding" (1951), "Rich, Young and Pretty" (1951), "Small Town Girl" (1953) and "Three Sailors and a Girl" (1953), "Athena" (1954), "Hit the Deck" (1955).

In TV, she appread in "The Goodyear Theatre" (NBC, 1957-1960), "Alcoa Theatre" (NBC, 1957-1960) and "What's My Line" (CBS, 1950-1967).

She worked the touring and regional circuit of Broadway plays, including "South Pacific," "The Sound of Music," "Oklahoma!" "My Fair Lady," and "Carousel."

Later in her career she was seen in "Fantasy Island" (ABC, 1978-1984), "The Love Boat" (ABC, 1977-1986), and "Murder, She Wrote" (CBS, 1984-1996), eventually taking on a recurring role as the grandmother on the popular family sitcom "Growing Pains" (ABC, 1985-1992).

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