Age 28 Gwen Verdon’s First Tony Award Can-Can, 1954

Overview image of Gwen Verdon’s first bestowed nickel patina Tony Award medallion reading: “The American Theatre Wing Presents to Gwen Verdon This Award For Her Performance in “CAN-CAN” 1953-54″

While performing pivotal dance numbers in Can-Can one of Gwen Verdon’s costumes was a striped long dress, see image below with the headline verso reading:

“Yes She Certainly Can-Can”

Pictured above a black and white press photograph taken backstage before a Can-Can  performance on “December 14, 1954” with additional verso text reading:

“Gwen has found that stardom requires a good deal of hard work. Here she goes through some energetic limbering up before a matinee performance.”

Verdon’s “limbering up” won her first of four Tony awards for her triumphant performance in famed American composer and songwriter Cole Porter’s Broadway hit musical Can-Can.

Verdon in same costume as pictured above is printed below in vintage news or press clipping with the handwritten annotation “20 Jan 57” and lower margin caption reading:

“COMEDY and sauciness of can-can dance are the essence of this pose of musical-comedy star Gwen Verdon, photographed by America’s Ormond Gigli, Gwen is shown in costume she wore in a number of the musical Can-Can.”