Borboni, Paola (1900–1995)

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Borboni, Paola (1900–1995)

Italian actress. Born in 1900; died on April 9, 1995, in a nursing home in Varese, Italy, two days after suffering a stroke; married Bruno Vilar (an actor), in 1972.

An Italian actress who appeared in hundreds of theatrical productions of distinguished playwrights, including those of Pirandello and Shaw, Paola Borboni was known for her ability to foment controversy throughout her extraordinary 77-year career. Rome's newspaper Il Messaggero dubbed her "Paola of the Scandals." In 1925, she bared her breasts on stage, later claiming, "I was neither sensual nor vulgar, I was just young and my bare breast didn't bother anyone." In 1972, she again made headlines when at age 72 she married the 30-year-old actor Bruno Vilar. Six years later, the two were in an automobile accident. Borboni was injured, her young husband killed. Borboni continued to perform until March 1993, shortly before entering a nursing home in the northern city of Varese where she died.