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Jones.Show: Jonesing For Good

May 9, 2019

Born October 1, 1925, Paul Phillips was raised in a series of foster homes in New York. At age 17, he joined the Coast Guard during World War II. Two years later, he landed on the Great White Way, his heart set on a career as an actor. In relatively short order, Phillips developed an unexpected friendship with renowned actress Gertrude Lawrence. It was Lawrence who first suggested he make the career move from actor to stage management. 

Paul’s remarkable credits include the original Broadway productions of “Fiorello!,” “Sweet Charity,” “Mame,” “Pippin,” “Chicago,” and “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas.”

Essentially, Paul Phillips spent his career protecting the integrity of some of the greatest American products of all time. In addition to Lawrence, Philips worked alongside Judy Garland, Tallulah Bankhead, Angela Lansbury, Beatrice Lillie, Ann Miller, Chita Rivera and, his dear friend, confidant and “soulmate," Gwen Verdon.

Gwen Verdon starred in the original Broadway productions of “Damn Yankees,” “Sweet Charity,” “Chicago” and more. A critically acclaimed Broadway performer in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s, Gwen was the recipient of four Tony Awards. She is also strongly identified with her second husband, director/choreographer Bob Fosse. Their relationship is the subject of FX Networks’ “Fosse/Verdon” with Sam Rockwell and Michelle Williams. Gwen Verdon died on October 18, 2000.

Gwen has two children, Jimmy Henaghan and Nicole Fosse.

This episode is dedicated to the memory of the extraordinary Ms. Verdon.

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