Saturday, May 4, 2013

Happy Birthday Audrey Hepburn

Audrey Hepburn is one of my favorite old Hollywood movie stares, so of course it’s only appropriate to do a post about her on her birthday! She is probably best knew for movies such as Breakfast at Tiffany’s and many other timeless movies. She was born an actress and humanitarian, leaving an unforgettable legacy behind. 
Audrey Hepburn {born Audrey Kathleen Ruston} on May 4, 1929, in Brussels, Belgium. After Audrey’s father, Joseph left in 1935, her mother, Ella van Heemstra, moved her and her children to Arnhem. A few years later Ella and Audrey moved to Kent, where Hepburn was educated at a small independent girl’s school in the village of Elham. In 1939 Audrey and her mother moved back to Arnhem, under the belief that the Netherlands would remain neutral during World War II and spared a German attack. While in Arnhem Audrey attended Arnhem Conservatory {1939-1945} where she was trained in ballet as well as academics. When World War II eventually impacted the Netherlands as well, Audrey suffered from malnutrition, developed acute anaemia, and respiratory problems. Hepburn became a proficient ballet dancer in 1944; she had secretly danced for groups of people to collect money for the Dutch resistance. Hepburn’s personal war-time experiences sparked her devotion to UNICEF. 
After the war ended in 1945, Audrey and her mother moved to Amsterdam, where Audrey took ballet lessons for three years with Sonia Gaskell. In 1948 Audrey made her first film appearance as an air stewardess in an educational travel film. In 1948 Audrey traveled with her mother to London to study ballet at the Ballet Rambert; she supported herself with part-time work as a model. Audrey made her first big break when she played the main character in the Broadway play Gigi, earning her a Theater World Award. 
Hepburn’s first staring role was as Princess Ann in Roman Holiday. Roman Holiday earned Audrey an Academy Award for Best Actress. She soon became one of Hollywood’s most popular box-office attractions, going on to star in successful films. Some of the movies she is best known for are: Funny Face, Love in the Afternoon, The Nun’s Story, My Fair Lady, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and many more!
Audrey Hepburn was not only an actress but a humanitarian as well. She was appointed Goodwill Ambassador of UNICEF. President George H. W. Bush presented her with the Presidential Metal of Freedom, and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science awarded her the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award. Her legacy as actress, her personality, and the work she did with UNICEF has endured long after her death. Happy Birthday to a wonderful person!

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