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Also Known As: Carol Creighton Burnett Died:
Born: April 26, 1933 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: San Antonio, Texas, USA Profession: comedian, actor, singer, playwright, usher, hat check person

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

An iconic figure in the history of American television comedy and an inspiration to both female and male comics for almost 50 years, Carol Burnett rose from a difficult childhood to become one of the most beloved performers on television, both as a featured performer on series like "The Garry Moore Show" (CBS, 1950-1967) and as the star of her own acclaimed sketch comedy series, "The Carol Burnett Show" (CBS, 1967-1978). Burnett was also an accomplished musical performer, netting a Tony Award for her star-making Broadway debut in "Once Upon a Mattress" (1959). Though her subsequent series efforts never equaled the heights achieved by "The Carol Burnett Show," she was frequently hailed for her guest appearances on numerous sitcoms, and also established herself as a formidable dramatic actress with the 1979 TV movie, "Friendly Fire." Burnett also enjoyed a sporadic movie career, with roles in films like Robert Altman's "A Wedding" (1978) and John Huston's "Annie" (1982), while always making headlines with her returns to the stage - most particularly in "Moon Over Buffalo" (1995) and "Putting It Together" (1999). In the next millennium, Burnett earned acclaim for guest stints on "Law & Order: Special...

An iconic figure in the history of American television comedy and an inspiration to both female and male comics for almost 50 years, Carol Burnett rose from a difficult childhood to become one of the most beloved performers on television, both as a featured performer on series like "The Garry Moore Show" (CBS, 1950-1967) and as the star of her own acclaimed sketch comedy series, "The Carol Burnett Show" (CBS, 1967-1978). Burnett was also an accomplished musical performer, netting a Tony Award for her star-making Broadway debut in "Once Upon a Mattress" (1959). Though her subsequent series efforts never equaled the heights achieved by "The Carol Burnett Show," she was frequently hailed for her guest appearances on numerous sitcoms, and also established herself as a formidable dramatic actress with the 1979 TV movie, "Friendly Fire." Burnett also enjoyed a sporadic movie career, with roles in films like Robert Altman's "A Wedding" (1978) and John Huston's "Annie" (1982), while always making headlines with her returns to the stage - most particularly in "Moon Over Buffalo" (1995) and "Putting It Together" (1999). In the next millennium, Burnett earned acclaim for guest stints on "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (NBC, 1999- ) and "Glee" (Fox, 2009- ), proving that the comedic legend was still a powerful force on the small screen in whatever genre presented her.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

3.
 Post Grad (2009)
5.
 Broadway: The Golden Age (2004) Herself
6.
 Trumpet of the Swan, The (2001) Voice Of Mrs Hammerbotham
7.
 Get Bruce (1999) Herself
8.
 Marriage Fool, The (1998) Florence
9.
10.
 Seasons of the Heart (1994) Vivian Levinson
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1940:
Moved to Hollywood with her grandmother, where she was raised in a boarding house
:
Stage debut in a production of "Annie, Get Your Gun" at UCLA
:
Was given $1,000 by a benefactor (who saw her perform at a society party) to go to New York and launch her professional career on the condition of anonymity and the promise to repay the money by helping others if she ever became a success
1954:
Moved to NYC at age 21 and performed in industrial shows
1955:
Organized "The Rehearsal Club Revue of 1955" which led to her TV debut
1955:
TV debut on th Saturday morning children's program "The Paul Winchell and Jerry Mahoney Show" (NBC) as dummy Jerry's girlfriend
1956:
First appeared on Garry Moore's daytime variety program
1956:
Played Celia, Buddy Hackett's girlfriend on the short-lived TV sitcom "Stanley" (NBC)
1957:
Made New York nightclub debut at the Blue Angel
1957:
Song she introduced in New York cabarets, "I Made a Fool of Myself Over John Foster Dulles" landed her guest spots on the Jack Paar and Ed Sullivan shows
1958:
Was a regular panelist on TV quiz program "Stump the Stars" (CBS, ABC)
1959:
Broadway debut as Princess Winifred in "Once Upon a Mattress"
1959:
Joined the primetime variety series "The Garry Moore Show" (CBS) as a regular
1959:
Offered a ten-year, $1 million contract for her exclusive services by CBS
1962:
Appeared as a klutzy usher helped by a bungling apprentice angel in "Cavender Is Coming" on the "Twilight Zone" (CBS)
1963:
Co-starred with Julie Andrews on CBS special "Julie and Carol at Carnegie Hall"
1963:
Film debut, "Who's Been Sleeping in My Bed?"
1964:
Returned to Broadway to star in the musical "Fade Out, Fade In"
1964:
Hosted CBS variety series "The Entertainers" on a rotating basis with Bob Newhart and Catarina Valente
1967:
Played recurring role of a tough career marine on the popular CBS sitcom "Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C."
1967:
Headlined and produced the CBS comedy-variety program "The Carol Burnett Show" (later syndicated as "Carol Burnett and Friends")
1970:
Appeared on stage at the Huntington Hartford Theater in "Plaza Suite"; returned seven years later for "Same Time, Next Year" (1977)
1975:
Played four roles (three sisters and their mother) in the first TV adaptation of the four-part stage comedy-drama "Twigs"
:
Founded independent production company Kalola Productions with Marcia Brandwynne
1983:
Landed recurring role on "All My Children" (ABC) as Verla Grubbs, a character created for her by series creator Agnes Nixon
1983:
Played Eunice Higgins opposite Thelma Harper's Thelma 'Mama' Harper on the sitcom "Mama's Family" (NBC, Syndicated)
1987:
Published her memoir <i>One More Time</i>
1990:
Headlined short-lived comedy anthology "Carol & Company" (NBC)
1991:
Returned to TV with new CBS variety hour "The Carol Burnett Show"; also debuted as executive producer
1995:
Returned to Broadway after 30 years in comedy with "Moon Over Buffalo"; earned a Tony nomination; show was subject of a behind-the-scenes documentary "Moon Over Broadway"
1996:
Appeared as the mother of Jamie Buchman (Helen Hunt) on the NBC sitcom "Mad About You"
1999:
Returned to Broadway musicals as the star of "Putting It Together," a revue of Stephen Sondheim songs
2002:
With daughter Carrie co-wrote the Broadway play "Hollywood Arms," adapted from Burnett's bestselling memoir
2005:
Played the villainous Queen Aggravainin in the ABC production of "Once Upon a Mattress"
2006:
Guest-starred on ABC's "Desperate Housewives" as Bree Van de Kamp's (Marcia Cross) stepmother
2008:
Voiced Sour Kangaroo in the animated feature "Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears a Who!"
2009:
Earned an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series for her role in "Law and Order: SVU" as faded ballet star Bridget 'Birdie' Sulloway
2009:
Played Alexis Bledel's eccentric mother in the film "Post Grad"
2010:
Guest starred as Sue Sylvester's (Jane Lynch) mother on Fox musical comedy series "Glee"
2010:
Earned a Grammy nomination for Best Spoken Word for the album, <i>This Time Together: Laughter And Reflection</i>
2012:
Voiced the character Hara in the U.S. release of the Studio Ghibli animated fantasy film "The Secret World of Arrietty"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Hollywood High School: Los Angeles , California -
University of California, Los Angeles: Los Angeles , California - 1953 - 1955
University of California, Los Angeles: Los Angeles , California - 1953 - 1955

Notes

"If you get thirty percent of the audience laughing, you're home free" --Carol Burnett

Received the LOS ANGELES TIMES' Woman of the Year Award.

Received the Fame Award as best comedienne for six seasons.

She was given four successive Entertainer of the Year Awards as Best Female Comedienne from the American Guild of Variety Artists.

Received Variety Club Award as top female star.

Voted Most Popular Star by the Newspaper Enterprise Association.

She was named Entertainer of the year by the Friars Club.

She was named one of the World's 20 Most Admired Women in a poll conducted by George Gallup.

Honored by the fourth annual Women in Film Crystal Awards in 1980.

She received the People's Choice Award as Favorite Female Television Star in 1981-1982.

Named one of the world's ten most admired women by "Good Housekeeping" magazine in 1983.

She was cited as Humanitarian of the Year by Variety Clubs International (1983).

Named Jack Benny Humanitarian of the year by the March of Dimes in 1982.

She was given the International Radio and Television Society's Gold Medal (1984).

Inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame in 1985.

Received an honorary doctrate of humane letters from Emerson College of Boston in 1980.

Burnett was named the Grand Marshal of the 1998 Tournament of Roses Parade.

In November 1998, she donated materials relating to "The Carol Burnett Show" to the archives at UCLA

Companions close complete companion listing

husband:
Don Saroyan. Actor. Married on December 15, 1955; divorced.
husband:
Joe Hamilton. Producer, director. Born on January 6, 1929; married on May 4, 1963; separated in 1982; divorced c. 1984; died on June 9, 1991; was executive producer on "The Garry Moore Show" and "The Carol Burnett Show".
husband:
Brian Miller. Music contractor. Born c. 1956; married in November 2001.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Joseph Thomas Burnett. Movie theater manager. Was an alcoholic who left family when Burnett was 8; died in 1954.
mother:
Ina Louise Melton. Was an alcoholic; died at age 47 in 1957.
half-sister:
Chris Frauchinger. Younger; mother, Louise Burnett.
daughter:
Carrie Louise Hamilton. Actor, singer, filmmaker, playwright. Born on December 5, 1963 in NYC; battled a highly publicized drug problem; later appeared in "Rent" and made short films; co-wrote play "Hollywood Arms" with mother; died on January 20, 2002 of cancer.
daughter:
Jody Ann Hamilton. Executive. Born on January 18, 1967.
daughter:
Erin Kate Hamilton. Singer. Born on August 14, 1968; married to Trae Carlson; had first son Zachary on January 14, 1997.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

Bibliography close complete biography

"Once Upon a Time"

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