So This Is Love (1953): Gordon Douglas’ Biopic of Singer Grace Moore, Starring Kathryn Grayson

Gordon Douglas directed So This Is Love (aka as The Grace Moore Story), a chronicle of the life of singer Grace Moore, starring Kathryn Grayson as Moore.

The story chronicles Moore’s rise to stardom from 1918 to February 7, 1928 when she made her debut at the Metropolitan Opera.

Grace Moore (Kathryn Grayson), dreaming of being an opera singer, starts out singing at a nightclub, where she meets her boyfriend Buddy (Merv Griffin). Buddy pressures her to marry him and move out of the city, but she cannot give up on her career.

There are obstacles along the way, such as poor singing instruction that inflames her vocal cords.  A new voice coach instructs her to rest and not speak for three months. Meanwhile, Buddy marries another woman.

Upon Grace’s return to New York, she continues her lessons. She is hired as an understudy in a musical and takes over when the leading lady (Marie Windsor) falls ill. Grace’s performance is impressive and she is made a Broadway star.  Her boyfriend, Bryan Curtis (Douglas Dick), dates her for two years before insisting they marry, to which Grace agrees.

When Grace auditions for the Metropolitan Opera, she is told that she lacks experience and that her youth, charm and voice are better suited to musical comedies. Unfazed, she wagers Otto Kahn (Roy Gordon), the Manager of Metropolitan Opera, that she will perform there within two years. She quits her musical contract and goes to Europe to get better vocal training. Bryan says he can’t compete with her dream and ends their engagement. Two years later Grace returns and her performance at the Metropolitan is a big success.

The soundtrack consists of various songs from multiple composers, such as Remember by Irving Berlin and Pack Up Your Troubles… by Felix Powell and George Henry Powell, released prior to and not written for the film.

Kathryn Grayson as Grace Moore
Merv Griffin as Buddy Nash
Joan Weldon as Ruth Obre
Walter Abel as Colonel James Moore
Rosemary DeCamp as Aunt Laura Stokley
Douglas Dick as Bryan Curtis
Marie Windsor as Marilyn Montgomery