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Thursday, November 19, 1998 Published at 17:48 GMT


Andrews 'may never sing again'

Julie Andrews: starred in Mary Poppins and the Sound of Music

The sound of music may never be heard again from Julie Andrews, according to her husband Blake Edwards.

The BBC's Madeleine Holt: Julie Andrews will carry on acting but may never sing again
"I don't think she'll sing again - it's an absolute tragedy," the director told Parade magazine.

The British actress had surgery more than a year ago to remove throat nodules and her voice has not been the same since, he said.

"She was told she'd be OK in six weeks, the voice would actually be better," Edwards said.

"It's over a year, and if you heard it, you'd weep."

Andrews starred in the movie versions of Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music and was also in the original Broadway versions of Camelot and My Fair Lady - although she lost the lead role of Eliza Doolittle in the movie version to Audrey Hepburn.

She won a Tony Award nomination for the stage version of Victor/Victoria, one of seven films she made with Edwards.

But she missed more than 30 performances of the musical because of gall bladder and throat problems.

Her part was temporarily taken by Liza Minnelli in January 1997 and Andrews quit for good the following June to have surgery.

Her spokesman Gene Schwam said the actress might have said no to the operation had she known it could destroy her voice.

Recently the stage and film legend provided the pre-recorded voice for Polynesia, a remote-controlled parrot in the London stage production of Doctor Dolittle.

In July, Andrews sat next to Prince Harry who went to see the show with his father Prince Charles.

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