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Bea Arthur

Bea Arthur


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Also Known As: Beatrice Arthur,Bernice Frankel Died: April 25, 2009
Born: May 13, 1922 Cause of Death: cancer
Birth Place: New York City, New York, USA Profession: Cast ... actor comedian singer


As much a cultural institution as a famed actress of stage and screen, Beatrice Arthur was immediately recognizable for her towering physique, caustic wit and sonorous baritone voice. She first came to prominence on Broadway, originating the role of Yente the Matchmaker in "Fiddler on the Roof" opposite Zero Mostel and winning a Tony for playing Vera Charles in "Mame," but television would be where she made her greatest impact. As Maude Findlay, the acerbic title character of the groundbreaking 1970s sitcom "Maude" (CBS, 1972-78), Arthur embodied a feminist intellectual who never shrank from tackling controversial issues, including abortion. Arthur won an Emmy for her iconic portrayal, and won another - as well as the opportunity to create an equally beloved character - in the next decade as Dorothy Zbornak on the massively popular comedy series "The Golden Girls" (NBC, 1985-1992). Lovingly entrenched in the popular imagination for her wit, sarcasm, and peerless reaction shots, Arthur spent her post-"Golden" years working in television when she felt like it and doing musical theater acts. When she shockingly died of cancer in 2009, she was universally mourned as one of the all-time great comedic talents.

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