Photo of Ginger Rogers Ginger Rogers

Best known as Fred Astaire's dance partner, Virginia McMath -- aka Ginger Rogers -- entered the world July 16, 1911, in Independence, Mo. Rogers hit the vaudeville circuit as a teen and in 1929 landed in a Broadway production that parlayed into her film debut in Young Man of Manhattan (1930).

Rogers' initial break came with a turn in the 1933 musical 42nd Street, and when she was cast opposite Astaire in Flying Down to Rio (1933), a magical terpsichorean screen team was born. The pair made 10 pictures together that embody the genteel charm of Hollywood's golden age. Rogers also tackled dramatic parts, winning a Best Actress Oscar for her stirring performance in Kitty Foyle (1940).

A 1949 re-pairing with Astaire in The Barkleys of Broadway revitalized Rogers' movie career, but she returned to stage work after 1957, making her last film, Harlow, in 1965. She died of heart failure April 25, 1995.

Ginger Rogers in Swing Time

Swing Time

1936 NR

In this classic musical, Fred Astaire plays Lucky, a gambler who misses his wedding to a young socialite and must come up with $25,000 for another chance with her. But after meeting lovely dance instructor Penny (Ginger Rogers), he forgets about his old flame. Often cited as the best of the 10 Astaire and Rogers movies, &NFi;Time Magazine&NFi_; named it one of its All-Time 100 Movies. Songs include "The Way You Look Tonight."

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