When I wake up in the morning and I see my son, or talk to my daughter, it’s an uncanny experience because Lorna sounds like Judy, and Joe looks like her, and it’s frightening to me. Sometimes, it’s unconceivable that she isn’t going to show up somewhere
Judy Garland was cast in BROADWAY MELODY OF 1938. Her serenade to a scrapbook of Clark Gable pictures, while singing “Dear Mr. Gable” as an introduction to “You Made Me Love You,” earned her a Decca recording contract. It became one of her trademark songs.
Born Frances Ethel Gumm on June 10, 1922 in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. She died June 22, 1969 in London, England at the age of 47.
She was an American actress, singer, vaudevillian, and dancer. With a career spanning 45 years, she attained international stardom as an actress in both musical and dramatic roles, as a recording artist, and on the concert stage.
She appeared in more than two dozen films for MGM and is remembered for portraying Dorothy Gale in The Wizard of Oz (1939).
Garland was the first woman to win the Grammy Award for Album of the Year, which she won for her 1961 live recording titled Judy at Carnegie Hall.
A comprehensive essay on the origins of “Friend of Dorothy”
When you call someone a “friend of Dorothy”, it usually implies you’re talking about a gay man but it can also refer to anybody who identifies as a part of the LGBTQ+ community. The phrase was most commonly in the early 20th century to covertly discuss a person’s sexuality while keeping the conversation as tight-knit as possible, to ensure that the person being talked about isn’t put into danger (though given the time period, the phrase was most likely used because people didn’t want straight folks being unjustly killed for being gay rather than because they genuinely care about the safety of gay people). Despite its popularity, the origin of the phrase is not officially known, though some have proposed theories which I will be detailing to you right now.
Dorothy Gale, Judy Garland and the Wizard of Oz
The origin of “Friend of Dorothy” can pretty easily be associated with either the books or the much more popular 1939 film. Let’s focus on the books for a second and just how unabashedly queer-coded they are. In the sequel book “The Road to Oz”, the character Polychrome remarks to Dorothy “You have some queer friends” to which Dorothy replies “The queerness doesn't matter, so long as they're friends” - perhaps gay men felt comforted by this line, knowing that Dorothy Gale cares about them even if the real world doesn’t. Even part of the Scarecrow’s iconic line from the first book (”Of course some people go both ways”) can be interpreted as a metaphor for bisexuality, and Princess Ozma’s story could be seen as being reflective of the experiences of trans women - ever since she was a baby, Ozma had to hide herself as a boy named Tip before discovering her true destiny as the ruler of Oz; going off from this description, it’s not hard to think of trans women who spend the first years of their lives being made to live as a boy before realising they were meant to live as a girl (yes, this applies to trans women without dysphoria truscum don’t @ me).
Moving onto the film, I’m sure everyone knows the famous number “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” sung by Judy Garland. But probably one of the most interesting facts about the song is that some have attributed it to the evolution of the rainbow pride flag. This is most likely because of Garland’s status as a gay icon. Throughout her life, Garland struggled with self-acceptance, childhood trauma, alcoholism and drug use - something that many gay men related to. Lots of them tended to sneak into Garland’s performances, calling themselves “friends of Dorothy” - creating a perfectly direct link to the euphemism. Additionally, Garland’s death and funeral took place several days prior to the Stonewall Riots, though reports have denied there was a direct correlation between the two events.
During the early 20th century, most notably the 1920s and 1930s, Dorothy Parker was a well-known social activist and had many gay male friends. She would often invite them to her parties, with some gay men using the phrase “friend of Dorothy” to gain entry - they would particularly do this at Parker’s parties at the villas belonging to the Garden of Allah, a famous hotel amongst celebrities. During WW2, many homosexual servicemen from both the U.S. and Britain would form friendships and romances with each other. Not wanting to be discovered, they would use the coded language that Parker famously used in her writings as a form of social networking, especially “friend of Dorothy”, so it would be understandable to attribute the origin of the phrase to Parker.
Welp, that’s all the info I was able to find about the possible origins of “friend of Dorothy”. I hope you enjoyed reading this and have a happy rest of Pride Month! :)
2015: Laura Antonelli, pseudonimo di Laura Antonaz, attrice italiana. (n. 1941)
2012: Lida Ferro, attrice italiana, attiva in teatro, cinema e televisione soprattutto fra gli anni quaranta e gli anni settanta. (n. 1915)
2008: Dody Goodman, attrice statunitense. (n. 1914)
2008: George Carlin, comico, attore e sceneggiatore statunitense. (n. 1937)
2006: Pinuccia Nava, è stata un’attrice italiana…