Norma Varden

Show Count: 40
Series Count: 1
Role: Old Time Radio Star
Old Time Radio
Born: 20 January 1898, London, UK
Died: 19 January 1989, Santa Barbara, California, U.S.

Norma Varden (20 January 1898 – 19 January 1989) was an English actress with a long film career in Hollywood.

Born in London, the daughter of a retired sea captain, Varden was a child prodigy. She trained as a concert pianist in Paris and performed in England before deciding to take up acting. She studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and made her first appearance as Mrs Darling in Peter Pan. She acted in repertory theater and made her West End debut in The Wandering Jew in 1920. From Shakespeare to farce, she established herself as a regular member of the Aldwych Theatre company where she appeared in plays from 1929 to 1933. She began to appear in British films, usually in haughty upper class roles.

Visiting California with her ailing mother in the 1940s, she decided to settle permanently there and began her American film career. She appeared inCasablanca (1942), The Major and the Minor (1942), The White Cliffs of Dover (1944), National Velvet (1944), The Green Years (1946), Forever Amber (1947), Strangers on a Train (1951), Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953), and Witness for the Prosecution (1957). She played the housekeeper Frau Schmidt in The Sound of Music (1965). Two years later, she had a minor part as Lady Petherington in Doctor Dolittle (1967).

She had a recurring role in the 1960s NBC sitcom Hazel as Harriet Johnson. She appeared on CBS's I Love Lucy as "Mrs. Benson", the neighbor with whom the Ricardos switch apartments after the birth of Little Ricky in 1953. She was cast as Mrs. Murdock in the 1961 episode "The Swedish Girl" on ABC's The Real McCoys. She appeared on CBS's Perry Mason as Winifred Wileen in the 1964 episode, "The Case of the Illicit Illusion." She also appeared on the 7th season episode of The Beverly Hillbillies "Problem Bear" as the snobby socialite, Mrs. Vanransenhoff, who went home with Granny to get gossip on Mrs. Drysdale.

She died of natural causes in Santa Barbara, California, on the day before her 91st birthday.


Source: Wikipedia

Railroad Hour, TheRailroad Hour, The
Show Count: 212
Broadcast History:
Sponsor: Association of American Railroads
Cast: Gordon MacRae, Stanley Farrar, Nadine Conner , Tom McKee, Mary Jane Croft, Ken Christy, Norma Varden, Herb Butterfield, Theodore von Eltz, Dorothy Kirsten, Jane Powell
Director: Norman Luboff
The Railroad Hour was a radio series of musical dramas and comedies broadcast from the late 1940s to the mid-1950s. Even though the shows do feature scripts, it was all about the songs - so if you love a good old sing-along, The Railroad Hour will tick all of the boxes.
Broadcast: 20th January 1952
Added: Jan 16 2011
Broadcast: 18th May 1952
Added: May 30 2010
Broadcast: 1st July 1951
Added: Jul 01 2007
Broadcast: 23rd July 1949
Added: Jul 23 2007
Broadcast: 3rd April 1949
Added: Apr 17 2007
Broadcast: 24th August 1958
Added: Jul 01 2011
Broadcast: 12th March 1950
Added: Mar 12 2009