Viola Dana

Viola Dana (June 26, 1897 – July 3, 1987) was an American film actress who was successful during the era of silent movies. Born Virginia Flugrath, Dana was a child star, appearing on the stage at the age of three. She read Shakespeare and particularly identified with the teenage Juliet. She enjoyed a long run at the Hudson Theater in New York City. A particular favorite of audiences was her performance in David Belasco's Poor Little Rich Girl, when she was 16. She went into vaudeville with Dustin Farnum in The Little Rebel and played a bit part in The Model by Augustus Thomas. Dana entered films in 1910. Her first motion picture was made at a former Manhattan (New York) riding academy on West 61st Street. The stalls had been transformed to dressing rooms. Dana became a star with the Edison Company, working at their studio in the Bronx. She fell in love with Edison director John Hancock Collins (1889–1918) and they married in 1915. Dana's success in Collins's Edison features such as Children of Eve (1915) and The Cossack Whip (1916) encouraged producer B. A.


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