Harold Clifford Keel was an American actor and singer with a rich bass-baritone singing voice. He starred in a number of MGM musicals in the 1950s and in the CBS television series Dallas from 1981–1991. He died of a heart attack in Los Angeles, California, in 1989.
About Howard Keel in brief
Harold Clifford Keel was an American actor and singer with a rich bass-baritone singing voice. He starred in a number of MGM musicals in the 1950s and in the CBS television series Dallas from 1981–1991. Keel’s first public performance took place in the summer of 1941, when he played the role of Samuel the Prophet in Handel’s oratorio Saul. In 1945, he briefly understudied for John Raitt in the Broadway hit Carousel before being assigned to Oklahoma! both written by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II. While performing in Oklahoma, Keel accomplished a feat that has never been duplicated on Broadway; he once performed the leads in both shows on the same day. He appeared at The Muny in St. Louis as Adam in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers ; Emile de Becque in South Pacific ; Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady ; and as General Waverly in White Christmas. He made his film debut as Harold Keel at the British Lion studio in Elstree, in The Small Voice, released in the United States as The Hideout.
He played an escaped convict holding a playwright and his wife hostage in their English country cottage. In 1957, he returned to Hollywood to play Simon Fisher in a Biblical epic, The Biblical epic The Big Floods. He was one of many guest stars in the film Deep in My Heart. He and Esther Williams made a third film together, Jupiter’s Darling, which lost over USD 2 million – the first MGM movie to lose over 2 million dollars. He returned to his first love, the stage, in 1957, in the play The Big flood. He died of a heart attack in Los Angeles, California, in 1989. He is survived by his wife, Grace Margaret Keel, and his son, Howard Keel. He also had an elder brother, Frederick William Keel ; they were so poor that a teacher would often provide Keel with lunch.