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Sitting backstage in her dressing room after what was unknowingly to be her last performance and looking much smaller than she had on stage, Miss Hayward commented about her Las Vegas escapade: "It's been an experience and I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world, but I didn't anticipate how really tough it would be," she said. "The kids in the show have been marvelous. If I start doing things that might hurt my voice they give me the high sign.
"Tomorrow, on my day off," she continued, "arrangements have been made for me to go sailing on Lake Mead. No vocalizing exercises, no dance warm-ups--just me, the water, the air and relaxation and how I need it." Perspiration soaked strands of hair curled about the nape of her neck in mute testimony to her words.
The following Tuesday at a hastily called press conference, Miss Hayward, whose voice was little more than a whisper, announced that she was withdrawing from the starring role under doctor's orders.
"Physically I feel marvelous, but I can't sing and it wouldn't be fair to the show to take a week off and then go back and have to leave again," said the visibly shaken actress.
Celeste Holm, who played the part for six months in Chicago, was signed as a replacement.
Miss Holm has a lot of experience in the gruelling part. She'll need it..she's replacing a lot of star.
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