- Bitch, you must get too hungry for dinner at 8.
- Liza Minnelli...she can do it all in one song.
- Daniel Radcliffe
- Garland - great singer, great actress, great dancer. Never be anyone like that again.
- No doubt Chita Rivera is the most impressive living triple threat.
- Garland was NOT a great dancer.
- Juliet Prowse
- Joey Heatherton, if you substitute making "fuck me" facial expressions for acting ability.
- Ruthie Henshall.
- Hugh Jackman
- Donna McKechnie
- Judy Garland
Rita Moreno (Although she's an asshole!!!!)
- Gene Kelly
- "Threat"? Whom did they threaten?
- As Tom Shales (I believe) once said about Melanie Chartoff: "She's a real triple threat: Can't sing, can't dance, can't act."
- [quote]Garland was NOT a great dancer.
R7 She wasn't Cyd Charisse, but she was still very good.
She had great style as a dancer. See Summer Stock.
My favorite scene of Garland dancing is from the film Girl Crazy.
Do watch this clip (posted below). Garland starts dancing at about 2:50 into the clip.
Her skills are impressive.
It's a wonderful scene: she's beautiful and elegant, the guys are cute, the song is heaven. And Garland is impeccable.
- Mama was! Now it's drunk sissy.
- In a documentary on Garland, Gene Kelly gives her a backhanded compliment with words to the effect that "she was a very good dancer with the choreography that she could do".
- correction: I meant to write "A Star is Born" not "Summer Stock" in post R18
- [quote] "Threat"? Whom did they threaten?
Actors who could only do one or two of the three.
- And Judy does that 4 minute dance in only 4 camera shots!
- I saw Daniel Radcliffe in HOW TO SUCCEED. He works VERY hard at dancing, and it shows. He's struggling like crazy. And he can't sing. So...no.
- The vivacious Ann-Margret!
- Of interest: In that Judy clip, her dancing partner is Charles Walters.
He was not only handsome and dashing...but also gay.
- Judy was wonderful with those skip steps, those traveling steps. She was no Ginger Rogers, or even Rita Hayworth, but her singing and acting more than make up for it.
- Have you forgotten...
Ann Miller - I'll Be Hard To Handle - from 'Lovely To Look At' - 1952
- Large Professor from Main Source. On the mic, behind the board, and on the decs.
- Probably Paris Hilton. She's had Herpes, gonorrhea, and chlamydia
- I love Ann Miller but she could not really act.
- Where is Julie Andrews?
- [quote] Where is Julie Andrews?
I dare your bitch ass to disagree
- Janet can move. Who finds her voice or acting impressive, Coco at r36?
- For R37, Janet can not only move, but she can act...
- Karen Ziemba!
- ...and her vocal range, while not powerhouse diva, is very versatile (ranging from soft and sweet to rock song-gritty)
- Both Michael Cerveris and Janet Jackson were on Fame
But not at the same time.
- Madonna or Janet Jackson can only do video or concert style song and dance. Audiences would be shocked in horror if they tried to do a real Broadway show. Hugh Jackman is a good example of how rare it is to be able to do all three. Was Liza the last female star who could?
- Marilyn Miller
My statue is still on West 46th street
- Does Toni Collette dance?
- Anytime Janet is asked about her time on "Fame" she says it wasn't a happy experience for her.
Basically she didn't want to be there.
- Bebe Neuwirth
- No r44, She also doesn't act or sing or look presentable.
- Plus, she was dealing with a drug-abusing husband.
- Janet Jackson on TV Show 'Fame': 'I Didn't Enjoy It At All'
- Gwen Verdon
- [quote]Garland was NOT a great dancer.
[R7] She wasn't Cyd Charisse, but she was still very good.
"Very good" is a long long way from "great."
"Very good" is a dime-a-dozen.
- Pia Zadora
- Thank you, OP. But it's so early in my young career to be naming me 'all-time' anything. Maybe once I reach 35 or 40.
- CZJ is only 29 and is too young to know about the evils of this world.
- The Karshner triplets!!!
- Looking presentable is not part of being a triple threat--sorry.
- Duh, timberlake
- Judy Garland was NOT a great dancer??
She more than held her own with Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly, not to mention Ray Bolger and Buddy Ebsen.
Where is the proof that Ginger Rogers was a better dancer than Judy? Ginger may have danced more with Fred but not any better.
Rita Hayworth and Cyd Charisse may have been better dancers but neither could sing and always had to be dubbed.
Check out Judy as Broadway star singing and dancing as Marilyn Miller in the gorgeous Vincente Minnelli-directed production number Who (Stole My Heart Away)? from MGM's Words and Music.
- Debbie Reynolds
- OMG r18, all the gay men in that scene!
Garland was a great actor - look at her scene on the train, eating a sandwich, in THE HARVEY GIRLS.
She was real in a way few actors at the time were real.
Watch her do "Get Happy" in SUMMER STOCK if you want to talk about a stylish dancer. And when she was thin, she had LEGS.
Wow, she was tiny. 4'9"
Gene Kelly said she was the most talented person he had ever met.
And she was also hilarious - great sense of humor, great BAWDY sense of humor. You can tell she'd be a riot to hang out with.
I think she's maybe the most perfect screenstar, she just exists for film, it's where she happens. Of course, I never saw her life.
It cost her a lot, though.
I wonder if she thought it was worth it.
In any case, everybody always says Cary Grant is the ideal movie star, but I'd give that prize to Garland. After her, Marilyn. Brando'd be up there, but Brando of course can't do much. And I'd put Hattie McDaniel on that list. It's no her fault that Hollywood racism got in the way of her doing everything she could really do.
- Never saw her LIVE, I mean, not "never saw her LIFE." Oops. Funny error, in any case.
Can't sing, can't act, can't dance. She's certainly amassed an impressive fortune despite being mediocre in every way.
- Thinking more contemporary, is there anyone evenly matched on all three?
Ewen Macgregor - Acting yes, singing not bad, don't recall him dancing
Beyonce - the acting is weak
Björk - the one acting role she did was brilliant, dancing is good for a musician
Hugh Jackman - kind of mediocre at all three
Jamie Foxx - how's his dancing?
Travolta - he's been great at each at some point in his career, but never at the same time.
Catherine Zeta Jones - jokes aside, she did do all three well in one film and got an Oscar for it.
JLo - mediocre at all three
Joseph Gordon-Levitt - has promise in all three - but no breakthrough
Patrick Wilson - pretty damn good at all three
Eddie Murphy - when he can fucking focus
Daniel Radcliffe - at least he's trying to be
- [quote]Hugh Jackman - kind of mediocre at all three
Are you DEAF and BLIND?
- wow I can't believe someone actually did that r40
- Janet jackson
- I know Joan probably doesn't qualify, but I think she was a good dancer. In this clip her arms look a bit amateur but her footwork is quite good. I think the fact that they didn't stick her in a long flowing gown meant that they thought her footwork was pretty good and needed to be seen.
- The Christian Triune God, baby.
Father, Son and Holy Ghost!
- Christopher Walken
- Maybe I missed it, but it's hard to believe that no one has mentioned Fred Astaire: dancer, singer, light comedian. And before anyone says he wasn't a good singer, I'll agree that he wasn't a good singer. He was a great singer -- up there with Crosby, Sinatra, Fitzgerald, and Holiday. Listen to his Oscar Peterson album. Porter, Berlin, Gershwin, Arlen, and Kern wanted him to introduce their songs. They all listed him as their favorite singer. As an actor he had chemistry with all his leading ladies, though his movies with Ginger Rogers -- especially Top Hat, Swing Time, and Shall We Dance -- stand apart. They're among the most enjoyable romantic comedies ever.
- Zac Efron
- Do Dressage, Steeple Chase and Show Jumping count?
- R71, Astaire is exactly who I was thinking of also.
- [quote]And before anyone says he wasn't a good singer, I'll agree that he wasn't a good singer.
And you're absolutely right that Fred Astaire wasn't a good singer. But you already knew that, so that's why you wrote the above sentence and followed with reasons to claim he was "great."
Fred Astaire could sell a song. Jimmy Durante could do the same. Eddie Cantor could sell a song. Jimmy Cagney could do the same. Sophie Tucker could sell a song. Fanny Brice could do the same. NONE of them were great singers.
- r65, Jackman IS mediocre. And he sings flat.
- Hugh Jackman is fucking gorgeous and he's a decent (not great) actor. But he has a thin little voice and he was flat at times in Les Miserables.
He's a much better dancer than he is a singer.
- I second whoever said Christopher Walken. He's probably the best dancer among major actors in Hollywood, even beyond Travolta. Just watch his number in "Pennies from Heaven."
Anne Hathaway is a genuine triple threat--she may be an annoying asshole, but she's a fine actor, she can dance, and she's a lovely singer. I was really taken by her years ago when she sang the part of Lili in the musical "Carnival" for Encores. That's a very hard role to sing.
Diane Keaton got her start in musical theatre (she was in the original cast of Hair), and has a very pleasant singing voice.
So many people have mentioned Liza, but you know I've never seen her give a decent acting performance other than in two films: Cabaret and The Sterile Cuckoo. She was amazing in both parts, but I've never seen her do anything since where she just wasn't being herself.
- It's hard to play "yourself."
And re: Astaire, the only time I was ever disappointed in him is when he tried to be heavy in THE BEACH.
- [quote]It's hard to play "yourself."
Oh for fuck's sake: no, it's not.
- Jimmy Fallon-Sing, guitar, dance, act, impersonations, improv, comedian, writer.
No one is equally excellent at all three, but Hugh Jackman is batting zero, Chita Rivera is 0 and 2, CZJ has 2 outa 3 and Streisand - can sing.
Ann-Margret, is interesting...but her singing is not good enough.
Love her or hate her Liza is near the top of this list. She could do all well, and has dazzled in each of them, live.
Judy Garland and Sammy Davis Jr. are the genius triple threats of older times.
Sinatra not much of a dancer, but squeaks the hat-trick.
My controversial pick is Bernadette Peters, but it is not really if you know her work. A lot of people don't seem to like her, but she really could do it all. Gorgeous voice, very good actress, and fine tap and jazz dancer earlier in her career.
Ruthie Henshall yes, Karen Ziemba no.
Gregory Hines, 2 outa 3 ain't bad.
Fred Astaire makes the club because he had some of the best songs ever for for his light tenor voice and the rest he had in the bag.
Gene Kelly had a great ass, but no cigar.
Janet Jackson is the best all round of the DIVA chicks. Argue if you want, but she can sing,dance and act. She is maybe a bit too slick, but is a triple threat urban chick.
Let's find a guy. Hm.
Can Usher act? I wish. He's a babe.
I wish Rita Hayworth could sing, ditto.
Carol Burnett..um nope.
Shirley Maclaine gets pretty close.
Daniel Radcliffe - are you kidding?
Patrick Wilson, maybe someday. He is good at all three but not good enough.
I know there has got to be more.....
On film Judy Garland is the undeniable most impressive and prolific triple threat.
On stage, she will have to share the honour with Sammy Davis Jr. and her daughter.
- R65 didn't see Les Mis
You missed out Juliet Prowse.
- Adam Lambert can sing his face off....and he can dance. But act? No.
- I'm surprised no one has mentioned Donna Pescow yet.
- J-Lo - most impressive in that she has a career in showbiz at all.
Funny that she was turned down for a record contract pre-fame so she used the acting as a stepping stone to get one.
- Tami Erin.
- Judy Garland and Eartha Kitt
- Liza was good in NY,NY R79, may not have been prime Scorsese but at least she got to work with him and De Niro at his hottest. So that's cool enough.
Cabaret on its own would be enough, a classic and one of the greatest Oscar winning performances. And that's backed up by The Sterile Cuckoo so she isn't a one hit wonder.
For a chequered film career she must have one of the best.
- [quote]Janet Jackson is the best all round of the DIVA chicks. Argue if you want, but she can sing,dance and act. She is maybe a bit too slick, but is a triple threat urban chick.
- If this is "of all time," shouldn't we also be including people like Bert Williams and Libby Holman and Mrs. Laura Keene?
- Liza and Sinatra are both horrid singers...fail.
- Love the way people like Jimmy Fallon get a pass but Ann Margret "doesn't sing well enough."
Here's the deal - you can be born with an amazing voice and you can be a natural actor with no training whatsoever (Barbra and Jennifer Lawrence come to mind as examples of each) but you cannot become a great dancer with just what God gave you. You need to be in dance class every day for a good part of your youth to do the kicks, turns, extension and balance work required to be considered a good dancer. Style is born, but technique is made.
There's a difference between having some great moves (Michael Jackson/MC Hammer/John Travolta/Beyoncé/Lady Gaga/Ricky Martin) and being able to pick up ANY moves required(Britney, Madonna, Christopher Walken, Janet, Gene, Mikhail, Paula, JLo, Juliet, Mitzi, Lola, Shirley, Eleanor, Rita, Chita, et al) and training provides that difference.
Michael Jackson invented dance moves that electrified millions and had some slick lines, but he couldn't do leaps, bounds and extended kicks. His sister Janet, who had dance training, came closer.
That said, my lists:
Men - Gene Kelly, Hugh Jackman, Cheyenne Jackson, Russ Tamblyn, Donald O'Connor, Danny Kaye. Squeaking by - John Travolta (needed a bit more dance training).
Women - Shirly Maclaine, Ann Margret, Rita Moreno, Lesley Anne Warren, Bebe Neuwirth, Debbie Allen, Chita Rivera, Jasmine Guy, Valerie Harper, Paula Kelly. Squeaking by - Vanessa Williams.
And then there's those great song and dance artists who relied heavily on mugging for their acting but did it well enough to get good notices - Ben Vereen, Sammy Davis, Mitzi Gaynor, Ann Miller, Britney Spears, Joey Heatherton, ...and Madonna, who traded mugging for posturing with success in her videos and in Evita (her biggest video :)
...and many more unsung Broadway actors who simply lack(ed) the "star" quality necessary to become famous.
Broadway is the home of the triple threat. If you can't dance/sing/read well for a part, you won't even make the chorus. With the exception of the occasional specialty act, there's just not enough space or budget for one-job casting, like in the old days 100-people productions.
- [quote]Lola, Shirley, Eleanor,
Who are these people and why do you wrongly suppose we're on a first-name basis with them?
- Eleanor Parker or Eleanor Roosevelt?
- [quote]Broadway is the home of the triple threat. If you can't dance/sing/read well for a part, you won't even make the chorus.
You sound like Helen Lawson talking tough in the ladies' room.
- Lola Heatherton?
Eleanor of Aquitaine?
- Ruby Keeler
- Dame May Whitty
- Oh OK sorry (wasn't assuming we were on a first name basis with these, just wanted to rush through the examples - just knowing one or two would get my point across):
Eleanor Powell, Lola Falana, Shirley MacLaine (examples of women with dance training - not necessarily triple threats)
LOL r99 - I re-read and I DO sound like a tough-talking Helen Lawson
- Dick Van Dyke
- [quote]Sinatra are both horrid singers
- Helen Lawson
- R105 all you have to do is listen.
- Marilyn McCooo zbag
- It would be interesting to hear some Sinatra recordings corrected with Autotune so that he was on pitch with the orchestra. Could digital technology be added to Mitzi Gaynor's "South Pacific" songs to give some oomph to her voice?
- James Holmes:
Glock .40 caliber
- The same person thinks Frank Sinatra is a triple threat and Karen Ziemba is not. Ha.
- R112, no I think they both are not.
- Isn't Karen only an OK singer?
- r96 that is a very personal and narrow minded view of what a great dancer is. Who is to say that one has to do every possible style or move a choreographer throws at them to be considered a great dancer? People like Michael Jackson , Beyonce and John Travolta excelled at their particular style of dance and yet you say that Michael Jackson wasn't a great dancer because he couldn't do "leaps, bounds and extended kicks"??? Who cares? Its just some antiquated, classical idea of what dancing is, its like saying someone can't be a great singer unless they can also sing opera and classical music. This is obviously something you were personally taught and led to believe but its absolutely false.
- James Marsden And Zac Efron. Watch Hairspray again. Also, John Barrowman, is really talented, but a better actor on stage where his mugging works.
- Great Dancers, at least recent female ones, are Paula Abdul (pretty impressive in her peak), and J-Lo (which is the only thing she is excellent at).
- Of the current stars, I hate to say it but --Justin Timberlake?
If Usher took up acting, he'd be a triple threat. The guy sings and dances better than JT.
- Justin Timberlake can't act, though.
Usher acts. He's not bad.
- Out of the contemporary guys I have to agree that Timberlake can sing, dance and act. Liked him in Alpha Dogs and Black Snake Moan.
- But don't you have to do each very well? Or is it like being a decathlete where one performs well in each event but can't compete with individual specialist?
- Yes, R121, that's what it's supposed to mean. Like everything else, the meaning has devolved over the years. See: Sutton Foster.
- R114, Ziemba is now a formidable musical theater singer, having honed her chops over the years.
- Let's not forget MISS Debbie Allen. She's a triple-threat PLUS a directress.
- Russ Tamblyn was dubbed in WEST SIDE STORY, r96 - did he exhibit an outstanding singing voice in other things?
- Darren Criss
- Adrian Zmed
- Timberlake can dance and sing--as for acting, he can do light comic work but that's about all I've seen him manage. He's quite good at it, though.
- Jinkx Monsoon
- Gene Kelly couldn't sing
- Would a DVDA be a quadruple threat?
- He sang enough, r132. It's not like he was tone-deaf or even had pitch problems. As opposed to other well known dancers like Astaire, his voice, though not sophisticated and nourished, had enough lung/diaphragm support to qualify him as a singer, though not a vocalist. Its weakest factor was that nasal timbre that layered over it all, killing any possibility of him being perceived as a songster.
And while we're in the subject of triple-threats with nasal voices - why hasn't anyone suggested James Cagney?
- [quote]Would a DVDA be a quadruple threat?
- Gene Kelly: great ass, great face and great hole (I imagine).
- The following actresses have a lot of dance training. Can any of them sing?:
Mary Tyler Moore
Goldie Hawn (pretty close!)
DeLane Matthews (Dave's World)
Shanna Reed (Major Dad)
Natalie Portman (yes, she had a double in Black Swan, but mainly because her ballet was not up to prima ballerina absoluta level, though she has plenty of dance background).
I did/do hate when the following - in vanity projects - tried to pass themselves as dancers:
And while we're talking variety shows, don't laugh, but, how about Vickie Lawrence?
- This thread is supposed to be about the most impressive triple threats of all time, not some mediocre actress who took ballet as a little girl and you're wondering whether she can match pitch
- Duh. Bo Jackson owns this thread.
- Doris Day, of course.
- DEFINITELY VICKI LAWRENCE!!!!!
- Judy Garland. With Doris Day coming in second.
- Ozzy Osbourne!
Sharon, Kelly & Jack
- R129 is clearly joking.
- I don't recall Day ever truly dancing in her films. Didn't she do the "chorus boys throw me around" thing?
- Sorry about my DD ignorance. Just watched the clip at 140.
It's the only time I've seen her do anything that ambitious.
- Tiny Archibald.
- What R138 said
- Esther Williams, a quintuple threat: Sing, dance, act, swim and drink you under the table.
- I'm not convinced Natalie Portman can even act, let alone dance or sing.
- [quote]Didn't she do the "chorus boys throw me around" thing?
That made me LOL!
- Mary, Rhoda, and Phyllis
- Have we mentioned Chita Rivera yet?
Also, if Justin T qualifies, then so do Travolta, Jackman, and the black guy from Scrubs/Clueless.
Would love to see a show-stopping comic quartet performed by Timberlake (first T), NPH (2nd T), Jackman (Baritone), and Seth MacF (Bass) - preferably of something written by the latter.
- Judy Garland, absolutely. She and Liza Minnelli are actually quadruple threats because they have that elusive fourth dimension - IT.
- I don't know if you were kidding r153, but you're not too far out there.
We all know Mary was a decent dancer and singer, Valerie was on some Broadway musicals as a singer/dancer, and Clitoris Leachman can at least character-sing (in things like Deb Messing-style exaggerated soprano). Dancing With The Stars notwithstanding (the chick is like 80 now), Leachman had some dance in her background.
Georgia Engels also comes from a musical theater background and I remember seeing her in My One And Only in AC and she was pretty good.
And all those of you looking for the BEST TRIPLE THREATS OF ALL TIME and not allowing the discovery of someone's past training, you can all kiss my ass and fuck off. Do you really want this thread to be 10 posts long, with Chita, Rita, Debbie and everyone else who played Anita (except Karen), maybe Shirley and Cheyenne... and that's IT???!!
- My back leg could be a bit more turned out, but I definitely have clean dance lines, plenty of training, and I did ALL my singing in "Enchanted."
...plus four Oscar nominations say I'm a decent actress.
- I'm sure the Sinatra detractors are aware that he is widely considered to be the voice of the 20th century and redefined the art of singing. It's not as if we're talking about Bob Dylan here.
There's more to singing than being "on pitch" and having a wide vocal range - look at Billie Holiday.
- Streisand is a singer, actress, producer, director, composer, philanthropist, activist...
In my book the most talented entertainers ever are Garland and Streisand- both excelled in every entertainment media and basically owned any song they chose to sing.
- Scott Bakula