Juliet Anne Prowse was a dancer and actress who worked on stage, on television, and in films for over four decades. She was raised in South Africa, where her family emigrated following World War II. But did you know that she was associated with some of the biggest names in the entertainment industry?
Juliet Prowse, who was engaged to Frank Sinatra, also had an affair with Elvis Presley and was The Muppet Show’s first-ever guest.
The Early Life of Juliet Prowse
Juliet Prowse made her film debut as an uncredited dancer in the 1955 technicolor romantic musical film Gentlemen Marry Brunettes, where she worked with choreographer Jack Cole. She was dancing in a Paris club when she was cast as Claudine in the Walter Lang film Can-Can by an agent. She collaborated with Frank Sinatra once more on the Frank Sinatra Show, which was released in 1959. (Source: Verve Times)
The Affair with the King of Rock
Juliet Prowse’s fame skyrocketed after Can-Can, and she even performed at President John F. Kennedy’s inaugural gala in 1961. Because Kennedy and Frank Sinatra were friends, Sinatra invited several guests, including Juliet Prowse.
When The King returned from military service in Germany in early 1960, he shot his first film, GI Blues. Although he was still officially dating actress Anita Wood at the time, It is known that he met and fell in love with Priscilla Beaulieu while abroad.
Nonetheless, Elvis would continue actively pursuing his beautiful co-stars, as he had done throughout his film career. In this case, South African dancer Juliet Prowse was already in a relationship with Frank Sinatra.
When GI Blues was being shot, everyone was waiting to see what Elvis would do next in his career after serving in the military. At the time, he was the world’s most prominent young star, and even royalty wanted to meet him.
Princesses Margrethe of Denmark, Astrid of Norway, and Margaretha of Sweden paid him a visit at Paramount Studios – but that wasn’t his most famous encounter. In June 1960, the King had his only meeting with Marilyn Monroe backstage at the Paramount lot. There are even claims that they had one passionate night together.
On GI Blues, however, The King’s main fling was his co-star Prowse. He starred as US Army Specialist 5 Tulsa McLean opposite Lili, a nightclub dancer, and their on-screen romance was mirrored behind the scenes. (Source: Verve Times)
Juliet Prowse’s Relationship with Frank Sinatra
When Sinatra was in Las Vegas, Prowse would join him. Their romance grew stronger, and he proposed to her in 1962.
When he was married to Ava Gardner, the singer was notoriously possessive. He allegedly had his Mafia contacts rough up Marlon Brando when he caught them in a dressing room together. Their tumultuous marriage ended in 1957, partly due to various infidelities. So it seems strange that he would allow Elvis Presley to sleep with his girlfriend.
Prowse’s explanation was unusually candid, especially in those far more conservative times.
Frank and I are mature people. We don’t go for this teenage bit about going steady and all that jazz. I was as much flattered as I was in love. He was a complex person, and after a few drinks, he could be very difficult.Juliet Prowse
They didn’t stay together long after the engagement and eventually broke up.(Source: Verve Times)
Image from Wikinbio