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1980s / Remembering Mary Martin
Although she did a few films early in her career, Mary Martin was generally passed over for the filmed version of the musical plays in which she starred. She once explained that she didn't enjoy making films, because she did not have the "connection" with an audience that she had in live performances. The closest she ever came to preserving her stage performances were her famous television appearances as Peter Pan (she had starred in a musical version on Broadway in 1954, and this production was subsequently performed on television in 1955, 1956 and 1960). While she didn't enjoy making theatrical films, she did apparently enjoy appearing on television, as she did frequently. She died, aged 76, from colorectal cancer in California on November 3, 1990. Here's a clip of Larry Hagman giving a wonderful speech in honor of, and to, his mother, during the Kennedy Center Honors in 1989.