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|Also Known As:||Twiggy Lawson,Leslie Hornby,Leslie Hornsby||Died:|
|Born:||September 19, 1949||Cause of Death:|
|Birth Place:||Middlesex, England, GB||Profession:||Cast ... actor singer model hairdresser's assistant|
The original supermodel waif who acquired her name for her stick-like figure (a radical departure from the curvaceous ideals of previous generations), 'Twiggy' (nee Leslie Hornby) burst upon the fashion scene and revolutionized it as a teenage icon of the "swinging 60s." Though the world will never forget her larger-than-life beginnings, she modeled a mere four years (and never walked a runway) before forsaking the industry to enjoy a respectable career in film, TV and the theater, although she did come out of retirement and allow herself to be photographed by the likes of John Fwanel and Annie Liebovitz during the 90s. When director Ken Russell asked her to star in his 1971 film version of "The Boy Friend", she replied, " ... I can't act, I can't sing and I can't dance." Advised by him to "get yourself off to class," she made a charming debut in his typically strange but highly enjoyable adaptation of Sandy Wilson's spoof of 1920s musicals, saying later: "I owe him an incredible debt; I probably would just have gone on modeling."
Twiggy's second feature, the thriller "W" (1974) paired her with future husband Michael Witney, and she later appeared in a small role in "The Blues Brothers" (1980) and played a would-be singer in "Madame Sousatzka" (1988, opposite second husband Leigh Lawson), among her other pictures. Though she worked in TV both at home in England and on CBS' short-lived sitcom, "Princesses" (1991), she has made her biggest impact on stage, beginning with her West End debut as "Cinderella" in 1974. In 1983 she reunited with her "Boy Friend" co-star Tommy Tune who was co-directing and starring in Broadway's "My One and Only", a reworking of the 1920s Gershwin classic "Funny Face". Acting in a 1997 London revival of Noel Coward's "Blithe Spirit" was the first step on the way to playing what may turn out to be a defining role of her career, that of Coward's platonic flame and frequent co-star Gertrude Lawrence. Of Lawrence, Agnes de Mille once said, "She can't sing, but who cares?", and Twiggy brought the same kind of star presence to her off-Broadway turn in "If Love Were All", a musical telling of the famous friendship to the accompaniment of 20 Coward songs.
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