Jonelle Allen

“New York gossip columnist and TV variety show host Walter Winchell invited the pin-size hoofer to join Sammy Davis Jr. in a take-off of the Shirley Temple/Bill “Bojangles” Robinson tap dance routines in “The Little Colonel.”

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 NBC FOLLIES (1973)

HAIR – Orginal Broadway Cast

Allen returned to Broadway for a 1955 revival of Finian’s Rainbow. She was in the cast of the original off Broadway production of Hair  at Joseph Papp’s Public Theatre and also appeared in George M!

Helen Hayes

Jonelle was four years old, when she was cast in the revival Wisteria Trees (1956) starring Helen Hayes, Ossie Davis, Cliff Robertson at the City Center Theatre in New York. In the course of the play’s run, Ms. Hayes took Ms. Allen’s Aunt Bea aside and advised her, “Keep this child in the theatre, she has a natural gift.” It wasn’t until some twenty years later at Sardi’s that Jonelle again saw Helen Hayes in person. Ms. Allen was in the spotlight at the famed theatrical hangout awaiting the first reviews following her opening night of the musical Two Gentlemen of Verona, in which she starred and Ms. Hayes had attended the performance. Rushing up to a great actress and assuming that she would not recognize her, Ms. Allen recounted the circumstances and what Ms. Hayes had said to her Aunt Bea years earlier. Ms. Hayes smiling simply said, “See…I was right.”