African-American singer and actress who won a Tony Award for her performance in an all-black Broadway production of Hello, Dolly! Her other Broadway credits include House of Flowers and St. Louis Woman.
She began her performing arts career as a Philadelphia-based nightclub singer and a United Service Organizations (USO) touring singer.
Her film credits include roles in Porgy & Bess, Isn't It Romantic?, and St. Louis Blues.
Her solo night club performances were followed by musical collaborations with Cab Calloway and other entertainers.