Tony and Emmy Award-winning actress Nanette Fabray dies at 97

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The exuberant, indefatigable actress-singer Nanette Fabray, a Tony and Emmy victor, a star of Vincente Minnelli's golden-age musical "The Band Wagon" and a longtime presence on television, most notably on "The Hollywood Squares", died Thursday at her Palos Verdes, Calif., home, according to the New York Times.

Fabray was a musical comedy star on Broadway in the 1940s, making her debut in "Let's Face It!", starring Danny Kaye and Eve Arden, and subsequently appearing in "By Jupiter", "My Dear Public", "Jackpot" and "Bloomer Girl".

The actress, born Ruby Nanette Bernadette Theresa Fabares in San Diego, was performing in vaudeville by the age of 4, according to The New York Times. She earned a Tony award for her role in the 1949 musical "Love Life", as well as a nod for her part in "Mr. President".

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But perhaps even more than her '50s comic counterpart Imogene Coca, Fabray remained a familiar TV presence well into the next several decades. In the musical, she performed the song "Triplets", along with Astaire and Jack Buchanan, according to the Times. He told the Los Angeles Times that she passed from natural causes. She also had four operations from 1955 to 1977 before her hearing was restored.

In addition to The Mary Tyler Moore Show (Moore repeatedly credited Fabray for her comic, hiccuping crying style, and shared just such a scene in an episode), she appeared on One Day at a Time, The Carol Burnett Show and numerous other variety shows of the era.

She also picked up two Emmys in the 1950s for her role in Caesar's Hour and fronted her own 1961 sitcom, The Nanette Fabray Show.

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She also played the mother of Shelley Fabares, her real-life niece, in the 1990s sitcom "Coach".

Fabray's second husband, screenwriter Ranald MacDougall, died in 1973.

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