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Amy Austin Remembers Seeing the Late Mickey Rooney on Broadway [VIDEO]

Mickey Rooney & Ava Gardner
Hulton Archive, Getty Images

I was sad to hear the news of Hollywood and Broadway star Mickey Rooney passing away. This talented man starred in more than 300 films and TV programs, and was on the Broadway stage, too! Rooney was 93.

  Mickey started his long career at the young age of 17 months when he was onstage in his parents Vaudeville act. He was only 7 when he appeared in his first of many films. Mickey grew up in Hollywood’s “Golden Age!” It was a time where films were safe to see with the entire family. It was wholesome and I miss that in films today.

He was married eight times, three times in the 1940s alone. His first marriage, to Ava Gardner, began in 1942 and ended in 1943. In 1944, he married an Alabama beauty queen, Betty Jane Phillips, and that one ended in 1948. His third marriage, to Martha Vickers, lasted less than three years.

I had the good fortune of seeing Mickey Rooney perform on Broadway in “Sugar Babies” along side Ann Miller in 1981. I went with my high school drama department and I will never forget it. “Sugar Babies” was actually a Vaudeville revue show and was quite racy for the time. He and Ann Miller danced, sang and entertained like nothing I’d ever seen.

I will always remember Mickey Rooney fondly as I watch his films with Judy Garland. The films are priceless. Everyone should watch them with their kids! And watch ‘National Velvet’ where he starred with Elizabeth Taylor.

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