Kitty Carlisle

Kitty Carlisle
Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times


Kitty Carlisle
Film: North side of the 6600 block of Hollywood Boulevard
Actress | Musician | Singer
Born Catherine Conn on Sept. 3, 1910 in New Orleans, LA
Died April 17, 2007 of pneumonia in Manhattan, NY

Kitty Carlisle Hart was an actress and singer who earned a niche in movie history by singing in the Marx Brothers' "A Night at the Opera" but who achieved her greatest fame as a longtime panelist on television's "To Tell the Truth."

Hart was the widow of Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Moss Hart and the former longtime chairwoman of the New York State Council on the Arts.

Kitty Carlisle, as she was known professionally, was a regular panelist on "To Tell The Truth" from 1956 to 1977 on both CBS and a syndicated version of the popular quiz show.

Among the show's early contestants: aviator Douglas "Wrong Way" Corrigan, a concert pianist who was also a judo expert, a female professional bullfighter, Winston Churchill's butler, President Eisenhower's barber, a Venetian gondolier and the president of the Liars Club.

Carlisle made two films with Paramount's rising young star Bing Crosby: "She Loves Me Not," a musical comedy in which she and Crosby introduced a song — "Love in Bloom" — that became a hit and later Jack Benny's theme song; and "Here Is My Heart."

The walls of her elegant Upper East Side apartment featured original artwork by friends Irving Berlin, Harpo Marx, Noel Coward and George Gershwin, who proposed marriage to her in the 1930s. ("I loved his talent, but I didn't really love him," she wrote in her 1988 book, "Kitty: An Autobiography.")

Over the decades, Carlisle continued to perform occasionally on stage, most notably in "Die Fledermaus" at New York City's Metropolitan Opera during the 1966-67 season; and she cropped up in an occasional movie, including Woody Allen's "Radio Days."

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