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Last Updated: Thursday, 19 April 2007, 11:04 GMT 12:04 UK
Actress Kitty Carlisle Hart dies
Kitty Carlisle Hart
Kitty Carlisle Hart began her career in the theatre in the 1930s
Film and theatre actress Kitty Carlisle Hart, who starred in the 1935 movie A Night at the Opera, has died aged 96.

She passed away "peacefully" in her Manhattan apartment on Tuesday after battling pneumonia since December, her son Christopher Hart said.

"She had such a wonderful life and a great long run. It was a blessing," he told the Associated Press.

She was also well-known as a celebrity panellist on US TV game show To Tell the Truth in the 1950s and '60s.

On her website Hart's long-time musical director David Lewis said she was "the most inspirational performer" he had ever worked with.

Kitty Carlisle Hart (second from right) and the other panellists from To Tell the Truth
Kitty Carlisle Hart (second right) appeared on TV's To Tell the truth
In 1991, she received the National Medal of Arts from US President George Bush.

Her film roles included She Loves Me Not with Bing Crosby in 1934 and A Night at the Opera with the Marx Brothers the following year.

But she found wider fame on television. "They don't even remember me from A Night at the Opera," she once said.

"They have no idea that I played the lead and did all the singing. But they do remember television, particularly To Tell the Truth."

Hart's late husband was Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Moss Hart, who wrote You Can't Take It With You and The Man Who Came to Dinner with George S Kaufman.

He won a Tony Award for directing My Fair Lady on Broadway.


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