December 25, 2008

Singer, actress Eartha Kitt dies at 81


Kitt died in New York, where she was being treated for colon cancer. Her daughter, Kitt Shapiro, was by her side.She was performing almost until the end, taping a PBS special six weeks ago in Chicago, Illinois. The show is set to air in February.

Eartha Kitt made it in Hollywood after a challenging childhood that included picking cotton in her native South Carolina. Eartha Mae Kitt was ostracized at an early age because of her mixed-race heritage. At 8 years old, she was given away by her mother and sent from the South Carolina cotton fields to live with an aunt in Harlem. In New York the shy teen auditioned for the famed Katherine Dunham Dance Troupe. Her recording of the saucy Christmas song "Santa Baby" was certified gold last week. Kitt was well known for her distinctive voice and made a name for herself in her portrayal of Catwoman in the television series "Batman." That role produced Kitt's recognizable sultry cat growl.
More on her career in this radio interview from NPR>>




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