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Carol Channing dies at age 97

by Bob Brown
Posted 1/15/19, 10:35 am

American stage and screen actress Carol Channing died Tuesday in Rancho Mirage, Calif. Publicist B. Harlan Boll said the actress died of natural causes just days before her 98th birthday. Channing stepped into the national spotlight in 1964 as Dolly in the musical Hello, Dolly!—a Tony Award–winning role she would reprise on Broadway more than 5,000 times. Her big eyes, high-heaped hair, and carved cheeks endeared her to fans, and her wide mouth served as the accomplice to her raspy voice. Channing parlayed her unusual features into memorable roles and a long, successful career that also included television and voiceover work. She appeared in only a few films but won a Golden Globe and was nominated for an Oscar for best supporting actress in 1967’s Thoroughly Modern Millie.

Channing’s father was a newspaper publisher and an activist in the early Christian Science movement. She first encountered the stage when she and her mother delivered copies of the Christian Science Monitor to San Francisco theatres. Channing was a practicing Christian Scientist throughout her life.

Married four times, she outlived two husbands and divorced two others. A son, Channing Lowe, a syndicated political cartoonist, survives her.


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Bob Brown

Bob is a graduate of the WORLD Journalism Institute’s mid-career course.

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