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    Videos: Dorothy Dandridge

    Lena Horne and Dorothy Dandridge had parallel careers as African-American pop singers, dancers and Hollywood actors. While Horne in the mid-1950s abandoned Hollywood for nightclubs (largely a result of red-baiting, here), Dandridge was nominated for an Oscar for her 1954 role in Carmen Jones. But two failed marriages took their toll on Dandrige. Her first produced a child born with brain damage, which added enormous pressure on Dandridge after her divorce. Her second husband swindled her out of $150,000 ($1.3 million in today's dollars). By 1965, Dandridge was bankrupt and suffering from mental illness. She died that year in September at age 42. It's unclear if her death was a result of a drug overdose or an embolism. 


    Here's a 3 1/2-minute documentary...

    And here are six video clips that show off her ease, charms and talents:

    Here's Dandridge with Paul White singing Zoot Suite in 1942...

    Here's Dandridge singing Cow Cow Boogie in 1942...

    Here's Dandridge with Louis Armstrong in 1944...

    Here's Dandridge on the Colgate Comedy Hour in 1951...

    Here's Dandridge in Carmen Jones, with Max Roach on drums, in 1954...

    And here's Dandridge in the TV series Cain's Hundred, from the episode "Blues for a Junkman" in 1962 with James Coburn and Peter Mark Richman seated in the audience against the wall and appearing at the end of the clip...

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