Nanette Fabray

Actor, Singer, Vaudevillian
A performer since age three, the effervescent Nanette Fabray has managed to keep her career moving not only because of her ample talent, but also due to her ability to move easily from screen to stage with ease. She ... Read more »
Born: 10/26/1920 in San Diego, California, USA

Filmography

Actor (40)

One Day at a Time Reunion Special 2004 - 2005 (TV Show)

Actor

Eddie Albert: A Passion For Life 2000 - 2001 (TV Show)

Actor

The 50th Annual Tony Awards 1995 - 1996 (TV Show)

Actor

Teresa's Tattoo 1994 (Movie)

(Actor)

That's Entertainment! III 1994 (Movie)

Song Performer (Actor)

Coach 1966 - 1967, 1990 - 1993 (Tv Show)

Actor

The Golden Palace 1992 - 1993 (TV Show)

Actor

NBC's 60th Anniversary Celebration 1985 - 1986 (TV Show)

Actor

The Night of 100 Stars II 1984 - 1985 (TV Show)

Actor

One Day At A Time 1975 - 1984 (TV Show)

Actor

Amy 1980 (Movie)

Malvina (Actor)

High Rollers 1973 - 1980 (TV Show)

Actor

Harper Valley P.T.A. 1978 (Movie)

Alice Finely (Actor)

The Mary Tyler Moore Show 1970 - 1977 (TV Show)

Actor

Burt and the Girls 1973 - 1974 (TV Show)

Actor

I've Got a Secret 1972 - 1973 (TV Show)

Actor

The Bob Hope Show (09/13/71) 1971 - 1972 (TV Show)

Actor

But I Don't Want to Get Married! 1970 - 1971 (TV Show)

Actor

George M! 1970 - 1971 (TV Show)

Actor

Howdy 1970 - 1971 (TV Show)

Actor

The Bob Hope Show (10/05/70) 1970 - 1971 (TV Show)

Actor

The Happy Ending 1969 (Movie)

Agnes (Actor)

The Colgate Comedy Hour 1966 - 1967 (Tv Show)

Actor

Caesar's Hour 1954 - 1957 (TV Show)

Actor

The Alcoa Hour 1955 - 1957 (TV Show)

Actor

The Kaiser Aluminum Hour 1955 - 1957 (TV Show)

Actor

The Band Wagon 1953 (Movie)

Lily Marton (Actor)

The Chevrolet Tele-Theater 1948 - 1950 (TV Show)

Actor

Irving Berlin's America (TV Show)

Actor

Magic Carpet (TV Show)

Actor

The Couple Takes a Wife (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

A performer since age three, the effervescent Nanette Fabray has managed to keep her career moving not only because of her ample talent, but also due to her ability to move easily from screen to stage with ease. She went from adorable performing child to lightly boiled dames to the kind of girls guys like to talk to as friends to a sweet "everyone's aunt" kind of woman to caring, though slightly overbearing mothers. Amazingly, Fabray has also managed to continue singing as well as acting, although for at least half her life she has been hearing-impaired and wears hearing aids.

Fabray began singing in vaudeville as a toddler, billed as 'Baby Nanette'. By age six, she was performing an act with comedy star Ben Turpin. At age seven, she began her film career by appearing in numerous "Our Gang" comedy shorts. In the 1930s, Fabray was singing on radio and appearing in the declining vaudeville circuit. Warner Bros. put her back in films in her first adult role in "Elizabeth and Essex" (1939). Ironically, she shared the same real surname as her character, Margaret Fabares. After "A Child Is Born" (1940), Fabray realized a film career was not going to materialize, so she headed to Broadway, becoming one of the toasts of the theater during the 40s.

Fabray made her debut in "Meet the People" (1940) and was featured in "Let's Face It" (1941), but she became a true Broadway star in 1947 playing opposite Phil Silvers in "High Button Shoes". In 1949, she won a Tony Award for her work in the "Love Life". Finally, after she appeared in "Make a Wish" (1951-52), Hollywood beckoned again. Fabray co-starred in Vincente Minnelli's "The Band Wagon" (1953), in which she is probably best recalled for the "Triplets" production number with Fred Astaire and Jack Buchanan. But musical were starting to fade, and Fabray returned to New York. She would only make a handful of films in the decades to come, including playing Barbara Eden's hairdresser friend in "Harper Valley PTA" (1978).

Instead, Fabray turned to the small screen where she became a regular mainstay on "Caesar's Hour" (NBC, 1954-56), Sid Caesar's follow-up to "Your Show of Shows" for which she won three Emmy Awards. In 1957, Fabray, divorced from entertainment industry executive David Tebet, married famed screenwriter-director Ranald MacDougall who created the "Westinghouse Playhouse Starring Nanette Fabray and Wendell Corey" (NBC, 1961). The short-lived series followed closely the outlines of its star's life--a Broadway star married to a Hollywood writer with two children. (Her character, Nan McGovern, even used Fabray's mother's maiden surname.) After the sitcom's demise, Fabray became a frequent guest star on comedy and variety programs, as well as occasionally playing a dramatic role. She was memorable as Mary Tyler Moore's mother in a few episodes of "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" (CBS, 1972) and made frequent appearances on "The Carol Burnett Show" and "Love American Style". In 1979, she joined the cast of the CBS sitcom "One Day At a Time" as Bonnie Franklin's meddlesome mother. Still active in the 90s, Fabray made appearances on the ABC sitcom "Coach" as the mother of the character played by her real life niece, Shelley Fabares.

Relationships

Raoul Fabares

Father

Shelley Fabares Actor

Niece
Fabray played Fabares' mother on the ABC sitcom "Coach"

Lillian Fabares

Mother

Ranald MacDougall Actor

Husband
Married April 24, 1957 until his death on Dec. 12, 1973

Jamie MacDougall

Son
Father, Ranald MacDougall

David Tebet Actor

Husband
Married Oct. 26, 1947 Divorced July 21, 1951

EDUCATION

Max Reinhardt School of the Theatre

Los Angeles , California

Los Angeles City College

Los Angeles , California

The Juilliard Conservatory of Music

New York , New York
Studied with Arthur Rodzinski

Milestones

2003

Featured in the documentary "Broadway: The Golden Age, by the Legends Who Were There"

1994

Cast in the comedy "Teresa's Tattoo"

1990

Played the mother of her real-life niece Shelley Fabares' character on "Coach" (ABC)

1987

Received Lifetime Achievement Award from the Screen Actors Guild

1987

Co-starred in the comedy feature "Personal Exemptions"

1979

Played mother to Bonnie Franklin on "One Day at a Time" (CBS)

1978

Played Barbara Eden's sidekick in feature "Harper Valley PTA"

1972

Landed recurring role as Mary Tyler Moore's mother on "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" (CBS)

1966

Made TV-movie debut in "Fame Is the Name of the Game" (NBC)

1961

Starred in first sitcom, "The Westinghouse Playhouse Starring Nanette Fabray and Wendell Corey" (NBC)

1960

Received her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame

1954

Won three Emmy Awards for her work on the series "Caesar's Hour" (NBC)

1953

Starred in the feature "The Band Wagon"; best remembered for the "Triplets" number with Fred Astaire and Jack Buchanan

1949

Made TV debut on NBC's "The Chevrolet Tele-Theatre"

1940

Starred on Broadway in "Let's Face It"

1940

Made Broadway debut in "Meet The People"

1939

Had first adult role in feature films in "Elizabeth and Essex"

1927

Made film acting debut in "Our Gang" comedy shorts

1926

Worked in vaudeville with Ben Turpin

1923

Made first profesional appearance in vaudeville as 'Baby Nanette'

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