Hepburn, Audrey, 1929-1993

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Audrey Hepburn (born Audrey Kathleen Ruston; 4 May 1929 – 20 January 1993) was an actress and humanitarian. Recognised as both a film and fashion icon, she was ranked by the American Film Institute as the third-greatest female screen legend from the Classical Hollywood cinema and was inducted into the International Best Dressed List Hall of Fame.

Born in Ixelles, Brussels to an aristocratic family, Hepburn spent parts of her childhood in Belgium, England, and the Netherlands. She studied ballet with Sonia Gaskell in Amsterdam beginning in 1945, and with Marie Rambert in London from 1948. She began performing as a chorus girl in West End musical theatre productions and then had minor appearances in several films. She rose to stardom in the romantic comedy Roman Holiday (1953) alongside Gregory Peck, for which she was the first actress to win an Oscar, a Golden Globe Award, and a BAFTA Award for a single performance. That year, she also won a Tony Award for Best Lead Actress in a Play for her performance in Ondine.

Hepburn went on to star in a number of successful films such as Sabrina (1954), in which Humphrey Bogart and William Holden compete for her affection; Funny Face (1957), a musical where she sang her own parts; the drama The Nun's Story (1959); the romantic comedy Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961); the thriller-romance Charade (1963), opposite Cary Grant; and the musical My Fair Lady (1964). In 1967 she starred in the thriller Wait Until Dark, receiving Academy Award, Golden Globe, and BAFTA nominations. After that, she only occasionally appeared in films, one being Robin and Marian (1976) with Sean Connery. Her last recorded performances were in the 1990 documentary television series Gardens of the World with Audrey Hepburn for which she won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement – Informational Programming.

Hepburn won three BAFTA Awards for Best British Actress in a Leading Role. In recognition of her film career, she received BAFTA's Lifetime Achievement Award, the Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMille Award, the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award, and the Special Tony Award. She remains one of only sixteen people who have won Academy, Emmy, Grammy, and Tony Awards. Later in life, Hepburn devoted much of her time to UNICEF, to which she had contributed since 1954. Between 1988 and 1992, she worked in some of the poorest communities of Africa, South America, and Asia. In December 1992, she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in recognition of her work as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. A month later, she died of appendiceal cancer at her home in Switzerland at the age of 63.

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn June, Raymond S. Raymond S. June papers, 1915-1958. Cornell University Library
referencedIn President Ronald Reagan Talking with Audrey Hepburn and Robert Wolders at a Private Dinner for The Prince of Wales in The White House Residence Ronald Reagan Library
referencedIn Archives pamphlet file : Hepburn, Audrey, 1929- : miscellaneous uncataloged material. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
referencedIn Clarke Taylor performing arts interviews [sound recording] The New York Public Library. Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound.
referencedIn Philippe Halsman theatrical photographs, 1947-1969 The New York Public Library. Billy Rose Theatre Division.
referencedIn Souvenir programs of motion pictures, 1915-1978. Harvard Theater Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard College Library, Harvard University
referencedIn Photographs of motion pictures and television programs, 1915-1999. Harvard Theater Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard College Library, Harvard University
creatorOf Wilder, Billy, 1906-2002. Love in the afternoon, 1956 / Billy Wilder, I.A.L. Diamond. Ohio State University Libraries
creatorOf Gershe, Leonard. Funny face, 1956 Mar. 21 / producer, Roger Edens ; director, Stanley Donen ; writer, Leonard Gershe. Ohio State University Libraries
referencedIn Odets mss., 1921-1963 Lilly Library (Indiana University, Bloomington)
creatorOf Hepburn, Audrey, 1929-1993. Autograph letter signed : Boston, to Edward Wagenknecht, [1953 Mar. 3]. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Jo Mielziner papers, 1903-1976 The New York Public Library. Billy Rose Theatre Division.
referencedIn Downer, Alan Seymour, 1912-. Alan S. Downer collection, 1939-1970. Princeton University Library
referencedIn McBride, Joseph. Papers, 1960-1983. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
referencedIn Papers, 1931-1999 (inclusive), 1960-1980 (bulk) Harvard Theater Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard College Library, Harvard University
referencedIn John Eldon Thayer collection of motion picture memorabilia, 1916-1979. Harvard Theater Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard College Library, Harvard University
referencedIn Traube, Shepard, 1907-1983. Papers, 1943-1977. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Anderson, Robert Woodruff person
associatedWith Downer, Alan Seymour, 1912- person
associatedWith Gershe, Leonard. person
associatedWith Halsman, Philippe person
associatedWith June, Raymond S. person
associatedWith McBride, Joseph. person
associatedWith Mielziner, Jo, 1901-1976 person
associatedWith Odets, Clifford, 1906-1963 person
associatedWith Pierpont Morgan Library. Wagenknecht Collection. corporateBody
associatedWith Taylor, Clarke person
associatedWith Thayer, John Eldon, 1899-1980 person
associatedWith Traube, Shepard, 1907-1983. person
associatedWith Wagenknecht, Edward, 1900-2004, person
associatedWith Wilder, Billy, 1906-2002. person
Place Name Admin Code Country


Birth 1929-05-04

Death 1993-01-20




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