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Carol Burnett is a comedian and actress who had a long-running sketch and variety show, The Carol Burnett Show, in the 1960s and '70s.
Carol Burnett reads from her new book Carrie and Me, a tribute to her late daughter Carrie Hamilton. Excerpted from the audiobook Carrie and Me, read by Carol Burnett. Audio courtesy of Simon & Schuster.
Host William Shatner talks with performer Carol Burnett about her grueling schedule as the star of “The Carol Burnett Show.”
William Shatner talks to comedian Carol Burnett about a nightmarish childhood experience at the dentist’s office.
A preview of William Shatner's interview with Carol Burnett on "Shatner's Raw Nerve."
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Born on April 26, 1933, in San Antonio, Texas, Carol Burnett became popular through television guest appearances and specials before receiving her own comedy-variety program, The Carol Burnett Show, in 1967. The show ran for 11 seasons. Burnett has also appeared in a number of feature films, and on Broadway. She published her autobiography, One More Time, in 1986.
"They tried to talk me out of it. They said, you know, Carol, it's a man's game. It's Dean Martin. It's Gleason. It's Milburn. And all of these guys! There had never been a woman doing a comedy variety..."
[On working with CBS to create "The Carol Burnett Show."]
"Adolescence is just one big walking pimple."
One of the most popular comedians on television during the 1960s and '70s, Carol Creighton Burnett was born on April 26, 1933, in San Antonio, Texas, to Joseph and Ina Louise Burnett. After her parents divorced in the late 1930s, Burnett moved with her grandmother, Mabel Eudora White, to a small apartment in Hollywood, California. She attended Hollywood High School, graduating in 1951.
After studying theater arts and English at the University of California, Los Angeles, as an aspiring playwright, Burnett left school early and made her way to New York City with her boyfriend, Don Saroyan, in hopes of breaking into acting.
Carol Burnett made her first television appearance in the early 1950s with a short stint on The Winchell-Mahoney Show, a children's TV program. Soon after, she began co-starring with Buddy Hackett on the sitcom Stanley (1956-57). In 1959, Burnett became a regular on the Garry Moore Show. Over the years, she was also featured on occasional CBS specials. Already a popular performer, she got her own comedy-variety show, The Carol Burnett Show, in 1967.
The Carol Burnett Show usually opened with a question-and-answer session with the audience, and the silliness ensued—broad comedy skits and sketches, with Burnett using her expressive face to great humorous ends. The show ran for 11 seasons, leaving the air in 1978. Burnett later returned to TV with the comedy series Carol & Company in 1990 and The Carol Burnett Show in 1991. However, neither effort lasted long.
More recently, Burnett made a guest appearance on the hit TV series Desperate Housewives in 2006, and appeared in roles on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and Glee in 2009 and 2010, respectively.
In addition to her hit television show, Carol Burnett has appeared in a number of feature films, including Pete 'n' Tillie (1972), The Front Page (1974), Annie (1982), Noises Off (1992) and Post Grad (2009), and performed the voices of animated characters in films like The Trumpet of the Swan (2001) and Horton Hears a Who! (2008).
Burnett has also done a lot of stage work. She made her Broadway debut in the musical Once Upon a Mattress in 1959 and went on to appear in a few other Broadway shows, including Moon Over Buffalo (1995-1996) and Putting It Together (1999-2000). Her 1986 autobiography, One More Time: A Memoir, provided the source material for the play Hollywood Arms, which was performed on Broadway from October 2002 to January 2003. Burnett co-wrote the piece with her oldest daughter, Carrie Hamilton.
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