When producer Florenz Ziegfeld put together a small group of showgirls for a lighthearted summer show in 1907, nobody could have imagined the giant Broadway hit and lavish revue it would become. Yet the Ziegfeld Follies ran until 1931 — and would jumpstart the careers of several successful future Hollywood actresses.
For those of us who missed the Follies in their heyday, there’s always Alfred Cheney Johnston’s iconic, wildly popular Ziegfeld follies photos. Though there were a startling number of performers in rotation over the years, Johnson’s stunning portraits of the Follies’ resident vixens capture the epitome of desirability — and in the 1920s, this meant something a little different than it does today:
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FlickrAdrienne Ames, Ziegfeld girl, 1929. Ames made 30 films in the 1930s, and after that hosted a successful radio program until 1947 — the year she died from cancer. Flickr
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FlickrAlice Wilkie performed in the Follies from 1924 to 1926.Flickr