Shirley Jones to be in Omaha for ‘Carousel’ screening -
Published Wednesday, May 1, 2013 at 1:00 am / Updated at 4:38 pm
Shirley Jones to be in Omaha for ‘Carousel’ screening
What: Classic-movie screening by Omaha film historian Bruce Crawford

Where: Joslyn Art Museum, 2200 Dodge St.

When: 7 p.m. May 24

Special guest: Actress Shirley Jones

Tickets: $20, on sale today at Omaha Hy-Vee supermarkets

Benefit for: Omaha Parks Foundation

Information: 402-926-8299

There’s no doubt that Shirley Jones loves “Carousel.”

The Oscar-winning actress is coming to Omaha for a May 24 screening of the 1956 movie version of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical.

The 7 p.m. screening, at Joslyn Art Museum, marks the 32nd classic-movie event organized by Omaha film historian Bruce Crawford. Jones will speak before the screening, then greet fans and sign autographs afterward.

Tickets, $20, go on sale today at Omaha Hy-Vee supermarkets. Part of the proceeds will benefit the Omaha Parks Foundation.

Also on hand for the occasion: Mandy MacRae Daley of Lincoln, whose father, Gordon MacRae, co-starred opposite Jones in both “Carousel” and the 1955 film version of “Oklahoma,” another Rodgers and Hammerstein musical.

MacRae, who called Lincoln home for the last 15 years of his life, died of cancer there in January 1986. He was godfather to Jones’ first son, Shaun Cassidy.

Jones won a supporting-actress Oscar for “Elmer Gantry” in 1961. She starred in the movie version of another Broadway musical, “The Music Man,” as well as a number of nonmusical films such as “The Courtship of Eddie’s Father.”

She is best known to younger fans as the mother on “The Partridge Family,” a sitcom that ran four years in the early 1970s. At age 79, she continues to work, recently appearing on the TV sitcoms “Cougartown” and “Raising Hope.”

Crawford said Jones strongly hinted that “Carousel” was the movie she preferred for the Omaha event.

“She said ‘Carousel’ is her favorite score, the best thing Richard Rodgers ever composed, and Rodgers said the same thing,” Crawford said.

The musical is best known for the songs “You’ll Never Walk Alone” and “If I Loved You.” Jones said the latter is her favorite song from her 60-year career.

Set in 1880s Maine, “Carousel” is the story of Julie Jordan (Jones), a mill worker, and Billy Bigelow (MacRae), a carnival barker, who fall in love and marry. They face hard times after both lose their jobs. Billy turns to crime and dies, then comes back from the afterlife for one day to make amends.

Of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s five great musicals (“Oklahoma,” “South Pacific,” “The King and I” and “The Sound of Music” were their others), “Carousel” had the shortest run on Broadway, despite being the most highly regarded by many critics.

It’s also the only one of the five that didn’t win an Oscar, or even a nomination.

Frank Sinatra was originally cast as Billy Bigelow for the movie, but he walked off the set when he discovered each scene was to be filmed twice — once in regular 35mm CinemaScope and a second time in the new 55mm format. After MacRae arrived, a method was discovered that ended the need to double-film.

Some sources say Judy Garland was considered for the role of Julie.

Reports have circulated for several years that Hugh Jackman wants to remake the movie, possibly with Anne Hathaway.

For the Omaha event, Crawford said, Mandy MacRae Daley will bring memorabilia from her father’s movie career. The Jitter Brats, a local dance troupe, will perform “June Is Bustin’ Out All Over,” a big chorus number from the movie, in the Joslyn’s fountain court before the screening.

Crawford also said artist Nicolosi has designed a commemorative postage stamp and envelope honoring Rodgers, Hammerstein, Jones and MacRae. An unveiling will happen while Jones is in town, though the timing is not yet finalized.

Crawford said DVDs of Jones’ movies will be on sale at the event for autographing.

Contact the writer: 402-444-1269,

Contact the writer: Bob Fischbach    |   402-444-1269

Bob reviews movies and local theater productions and writes stories about those topics, as well.

Read more stories by Bob

One father's tale of overcoming infertility
Annie, My 12-year-old grandson insists on sleeping with Grammie
Archives: So many wonderful old Omaha photos
Omaha woman, 30, battling breast cancer for third time
For World Book Night, some Omahans prepare to hand out free reads
Earth Day: A change in habits can help the planet
‘Wonder Bread Years’: Tickets on sale now for salute to baby boomer generation
Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium going greener
Annie Mailbox: My daughter will quit smoking if I lose weight
Win a Mommy Makeover!
Why two hotshots ditched six-figure salaries for a life of less
Jeff Corwin hopes to build connection with nature at Nebraska Science Festival
Annie, when that girl's hitting the bottle, look out
Blair High senior shows his love of pi by memorizing 1,381 digits
Jon Stewart might be real king of late night
'Tis soon Talk Like Shakespeare Day; hence be mirthful!
Can't find your pet? Social media is there to help
Easter Sunday temperatures climb into 80s in Omaha area
From fashion to baskets, a guide to the latest Easter trends
Families from area shelters treated to meal at Old Chicago
Mizzou alumni aim to attract veterinary students to Henry Doorly Zoo
This Friday, celebrate Arbor Day where it all began
Annie, my boyfriend of 3 years won't invite me to his mobile home
Kooser: 'American Life in Poetry' (April 20)
Swoosie’s voice a joy in memoir of stage, family
< >
Deadline Deal thumbnail
Tokyo Sushi
$5 for $10 or $10 for $20 toward All-You-Can-Eat Sushi Purchase
Buy Now
Jump to a blog:
< >
We Love Weddings blog
W.E. Love Weddings is about everything Omaha and everything weddings by the editors of Wedding Essentials Magazine.
Weddings and engagements
Share your exciting news with your community by placing an announcement today.
Inspired Home Omaha magazine
Sign up today to get the latest edition of Omaha's best magazine for local living, home entertainment, fashion and travel!
Want to get World-Herald stories sent directly to your home or work computer? Sign up for's News Alerts and you will receive e-mails with the day's top stories.
Can't find what you need? Click here for site map »