Elena Verdugo was born on this day in 1925

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ELENA (eh-LAY-nuh)

1. Elena Verdugo: American film and television actress

2. “Maria Elena”: a popular song written by Lorenzo Barcelata in 1932

Common clues: Actress Verdugo; “Maria ____”; Barcelata tune, “Maria ____”; Verdugo of “Marcus Welby, MD”; Jimmy Dorsey's “Maria ____”

Crossword puzzle frequency: 6 times a year

Frequency in English language: 49463 / 86800

Video: Jimmy Dorsey: “Maria Elena”

Elena Verdugo, born April 25, 1925, in Paso Robles, California of Spanish parentage, is an actress who began in films at the age of six in Cavalier of the West (1931). Her career in radio, television and movies spanned six decades.

She made numerous film appearances through the 1940s, including several Universal horror films. While filming the Abbott and Costello comedy Little Giant (1946), she met and married screenwriter Charles R. Marion, who also wrote for the comedy team's radio show. The couple had one son, Richard Marion, who later became an actor/director.

Verdugo had a flair for comedy, and she garnered much laughter and applause in the title role of the hit situation comedy Meet Millie on both radio and live television of the early 1950s. She was twice nominated for an Emmy for her performances as Consuelo Lopez in Marcus Welby, M.D.

She has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

"María Elena" is a 1932 popular song written by Lorenzo Barcelata (Spanish words and music). It was published by Peer International Corporation of Mexico. The English words by Bob Russell.

The song was dedicated to María Elena, the wife of Mexican President Emilio Portes Gil.

An instrumental version of the song was used for the background theme of the film Bordertown, starring Paul Muni and Bette Davis, in 1935. The next year the words and music were used in the Mexican film María Elena.

Lawrence Welk later introduced the tune in the United States on his radio program, then in 1941 on the Okeh Records label.

The song was a hit for the Jimmy Dorsey orchestra with Bob Eberly doing the vocals. The recording was made on March 19, 1941 by Decca Records as catalog number 3698. The flip side was "Green Eyes." The record first reached the Billboard magazine charts on May 16, 1941 and lasted 17 weeks on the chart, peaking at #1 on June 14, 1941.[3] Since "Green Eyes" was also a #1 hit, this was a major double-sided hit recording. In the same year the Wayne King Orchestra also had a #2 hit with "Maria Elena".

An instrumental version was recorded in 1958 and released in the United States in 1962 by Natalico and Antenor Lima, better known as Los Indios Tabajaras. This popular revival hit No.6 in the Billboard pop chart and No.3 on the Billboard easy listening chart in the USA in late 1963, as well as making No.5 on the UK singles chart at the same juncture.

Ry Cooder performed an instrumental version of this song on his 1972 album Boomer's Story.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Elena Verdugo" and “Maria Elena”.

ELENA (325) 120 We- >1 09 Actress Verdugo

17 Mo+ >1 00 "Maria ___"

9 We LAT 07 "Maria ___": 1940s song

6 We+ >1 08 "Uncle Vanya" role

6 Tu+ >1 07 Dementieva of tennis

00 Barcelata tune, "Maria ___"

5 Tu+ >1 05 Makarova of tennis

5 Tu+ >1 01 Ms. Verdugo

5 Tu+ >1 00 "Maria ___" ('40s hit)

5 Fr- NYT 99 Turgenev heroine

5 We+ >1 99 Verdugo of "Marcus Welby, M.D."

4 Th+ >1 08 Jean Renoir film heroine

4 Th >1 05 Spanish princess

4 Fr- >1 01 Ecuador's Santa ___ Peninsula

4 Mo >1 98 "Maria ___" (1933 song)

3 We LAT 08 "Maria ___": Jimmy Dorsey hit

3 Th NYT 07 "Uncle Vanya" woman

3 Tu+ >1 98 "Maria ___" (1941 hit)

3 We- >1 97 Daughter of Juan Carlos

3 Fr- NYT 91 Former queen of Italy

2 Th- >1 09 "Uncle Vanya" character

2 Th NYT 09 Mrs. Ceausescu of Romania

2 Th WSJ 09 Tennis pro Dementieva

2 Tu NYT 08 "Maria ___," 1941 #1 hit

08 Barcelata's "Maria ___"