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Susan Cummings

Susan Cummings

German-American actress
Susan Cummings
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro German-American actress
A.K.A. Susanne Gerda Tafel
Was Actor Television actor Film actor
From United States of America Germany
Type Film, TV, Stage & Radio
Gender female
Birth 1930, Bavaria, Germany
Death 3 December 2016, Sun Lakes, Maricopa County, Arizona, USA (aged 86 years)
Family
Spouse: Keith Larsen (-1960)
The details (from wikipedia)

Biography

Susan Cummings (born Gerda Susanne Tafel; July 10, 1930 – December 3, 2016) was a German-American actress active from the 1940s to 1960s, who started as a teenager in the earliest days of commercial television, and appeared in several television shows and feature films, and on Broadway. Her Tafel birth surname was sometimes printed as Ta Fel.

Early years

Born Gerda Susanne Tafel in Bavaria, Germany, she immigrated to the United States at age 7 on March 12, 1938, shortly before the outbreak of World War II. The daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Eugene Ta Fel, she grew up in Newark, New Jersey, where her father ran a bakery.

Career

Cummings (billed as Suzanne Tafel) was a teenager when she was a regular on the American television variety series At Home, which aired on pioneering New York City television station WCBW (now WCBS-TV) from 1944 to 1945, in the earliest years of commercial television. She first appeared in Broadway theatre in 1945, portraying Susan Peters in Carousel.

During the 1958–59 season, Cummings portrayed Georgia, proprietress of the Golden Nugget Saloon, in the syndicated Western television series Union Pacific.

She made two guest appearances on Perry Mason — one as Lois Fenton in the title role in the 1957 episode, "The Case of the Fan Dancer's Horse", and as Margaret Swaine in the 1959 episode, "The Case of the Lame Canary".

In 1960, she appeared as Stella Carney, a love interest of Marshall Dillon's, in the TV Western series Gunsmoke in "The Peace Officer". She later appeared as Patty in the iconic 1962 episode of The Twilight Zone, "To Serve Man". Her final line in that episode was the climactic "It's a cookbook!"

Personal life

In the late 1940s, Cummings was married to rodeo performer Wayne Dunafon. She married actor Keith Larsen on December 28, 1953, in Ensenada, Mexico. She was also married to actor Charles T. Pawley and accountant Robert E. Strasser.

According to Cummings, she was a registered Republican, and that growing up, she was raised Lutheran, but converted to Mormonism upon her marriage to Larsen.

With Dennis Weaver in Gunsmoke, 1960

Filmography

Film
Year Title Role Notes
1946 Merrily We Sing Suzanne Short
1951 An American in Paris Patron at Flodair Café Uncredited
1954 Security Risk Joan Cochran
1955 Headline Hunters Elsa - Receptionist Uncredited
1956 Swamp Women Marie
1956 Secret of Treasure Mountain Tawana
1957 Utah Blaine Angie Kinyon
1957 Tomahawk Trail Ellen Carter
1958 Man from God's Country Mary Jo Ellis
1959 Verboten! Helga Schiller / Brent
1966 The Street Is My Beat Cora
1974 A Time For Love Woman (final film role)
2003 Images of Indians: How Hollywood Stereotyped the Native American Herself / Ellen Carter TV movie documentary
Television
Year Title Role Notes
1944-45 At Home herself early variety show
1955-57 Soldiers of Fortune Simone LeBeau / Pilar 2 episodes
1955-60 The Millionaire Virginia 'Ginny' Hendricks / Claire 2 episodes
1956 Science Fiction Theater Ellen Barton / Peggy Kendler 2 episodes
1957 The Frank Sinatra Show Miss Douglas 1 episode
1957-59 Perry Mason Margaret Swaine / Lois Fenton 2 episodes
1958-59 Union Pacific Georgia 33 episodes
1958-60 Bat Masterson Rona Glyn / Lili Napoleon / Valorie Mitchell 3 episodes
1959 Man with a Camera Monique Thaxter Episode: "The Positive Negative"
1959 The Dennis O'Keefe Show Babette Benoit Episode: "The Marriage of Babette Benoit"
1960 The Untouchables Hazel Stanley Episode: "Little Egypt"
1960 Gunsmoke Stella Carney Episode: "The Peace Offer"
1960 Peter Gunn Paula Garrett Episode: "The Long Green Kill"
1961 Laramie Holly Matthews Episode: "Rimrock"
1961 Cheyenne Helen Ransom Episode: "Winchester Quarantine"
1961 Riverboat Tekla Kronen Episode: "End of a Dream"
1962 The Twilight Zone Patty Episode: "To Serve Man"
1964 McHale's Navy Renee Episode: "The Big Impersonation"
The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article on 25 Oct 2021. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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Reference sources
References
https://www.newspapers.com/clip/26756978/the_los_angeles_times/
https://www.newspapers.com/clip/26757515/susan_cummings/
https://web.archive.org/web/20190101032512/https://www.ibdb.com/broadway-cast-staff/suzanne-tafel-93024
https://www.ibdb.com/broadway-cast-staff/suzanne-tafel-93024
http://www.avclub.com/tvclub/the-twilight-zone-the-last-rites-of-jeff-myrtleban-97128
https://www.newspapers.com/clip/26723220/the_newsmessenger/
http://www.glamourgirlsofthesilverscreen.com/show/411/Susan+Cummings/index.html
https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0191966/
https://d-nb.info/gnd/137749082
https://isni.org/isni/0000000057315987
https://viaf.org/viaf/79198086
https://www.worldcat.org/identities/lccn-no2011181851
http://catalogo.bne.es/uhtbin/authoritybrowse.cgi?action=display&authority_id=XX5240040
https://catalogue.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/cb146749370
https://data.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/cb146749370
https://id.loc.gov/authorities/names/no2011181851
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