Cabaret Through Time Fridays at McElrath Cabaret–Irene Bordoni–Join Us!


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Fridays are the day when we at the McElrath Cabaret Blog present blog posts in our Cabaret Through Time series. We present historical cabaret singers, entertainers, venues, writers, and musicians, and often include cabaret videos. We hope that you find them informative!


Irene Bordoni–French Singer, Broadway and Film Actress, Cabaret Star



Source:  By George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


Irene Bordoni, who was born in Corsica, France and eventually moved to the United States, lived from 1889 until 1953, and was a well-known entertainer.  Can you imagine working during that time frame–going from pre-vaudeville to vaudeville, to silent films to talkies, to radio and finally to television, all the while living through two world wars?  All that change in entertainment genres in one lifetime is pretty amazing, and Irene Bourdoni worked well in several of them.  She was in the Cole Porter Broadway musical entitled Paris, introduced George Gershwin’s song “Do It Again” in 1922, and was known for her work in musical comedies.  She was also a cabaret star.  According to James Gavin in Intimate Nights, she was a most popular cabaret nightclub sensation in the 1920s and 30s in New York and performed at The Blue Angel.  During the 1940s Bobby Short also performed at The Blue Angel at the same time as Irene Bordoni (60-61).


Here are some links to more information about Irene Bourdoni:

Source:  By George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Ms. Bordoni was a wonderful singer.  Here are a couple of her songs from YouTube:


The funny lyrics of Cole Porter shine in “Let’s Misbehave,” from his musical Paris:


And Ms. Bordoni singing the 1928 hit “Don’t Look At Me That Way” with Irving Aaronson and His Commanders:



What are your favorite songs and entertainment moments from Irene Bordoni?  Have you ever heard of Ms. Bordoni before?  Let us know in the comments below–we love to hear from you!


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Till next time, 


Weekly Post Lineup At McElrath Cabaret:

Tuesdays:  Cabaret Tip Tuesday

Wednesdays:  Ask A Cabaret Question

Fridays:  Cabaret Through Time

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About Athena at McElrath Cabaret

Athena McElrath is an entertainer with a love for theatre and singing. She enjoys delving in the area of historical cabaret, researching the singers and clubs that were in business from before 1920 to the present, in New York and beyond.
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