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Miliza Korjus was a Polish opera singer who had two movie appearances from 1938 and 1942. She was born in 1909 in Warsaw and majored in music at the Kiev Conservatory. She toured the Soviet Union with the Dumka Chorus in 1927, and in 1929, she married a German physicist and moved to Germany, where she continued performing and recording records, and earned the nickname of "The Berlin Nightingale". Irving Thalberg of MGM heard one of her records and, sight unseen, he signed her to a ten year film contract (probably partially because she was credited with singing the highest soprano note on record!). She arrived at MGM in 1936, but Thalberg passed away, and she did not appear in a movie until The Great Waltz two years later (and she was nominated for the Best Supporting Actress Academy Award role, one of the only singers ever nominated in a supporting role). MGM then bought the screen rights to the novel "Sandor Rozsa" for her, intending to call it "Guns and Fiddles" and co-starring her with Robert Taylor in the title role, Hedy Lamarr, and Franchot Tone. But just before filming started, she was seriously injured in a car accident and one of her legs was crushed. She amazingly recovered, and had a concert tour of South America in 1941. When the U.S. entered World War II, she moved to Mexico, and in 1944, she returned to the U.S. for a Carnegie Hall performance. She continued performing in the U.S., living in Los Angeles, and she passed away in 1980.
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