Carol Channing — the Broadway star who is perhaps best known for her long-running role in the musical “Hello, Dolly!” — died early Tuesday morning. She was 97.
Channing’s publicist said she passed away at 12:31 AM in Rancho Mirage, California. In the last year, Channing had suffered from two strokes.
She played the iconic role of Dolly Levi in “Hello, Dolly!” over 5,000 times. The role was also played by Pearl Bailey, Phyllis Diller, Betty Grable, Ethel Merman, Martha Raye, Ginger Rogers, and Barbra Streisand, who starred in a 1969 film version. Bette Midler won a Tony Award for the role in 2017.
Channing was married four times — to writer Theodore Naidish, football player Alex Carson, manager and publicist Charles Lowe, and childhood sweetheart Harry Kullijian — and she had one son, cartoonist Channing Carson.