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Georgia Brown

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Biography

Georgia Brown (21 October 1933 – 5 July 1992) was a British singer and actress.

Born Lillian Claire Laizer Getel Klot in the East End of London to Mark and Annie Kirschenbaum Klot, Jewish immigrants to the United Kingdom, she was dispatched to Wales during the Blitz to escape the bombings in London. A lover of jazz, she selected her professional name from the 1925 tune “Sweet Georgia Brown” by Ben Bernie, Maceo Pinkard and Kenneth Casey. She also had a brother called Henry Kent (changed his surname).

Brown first came to prominence as Lucy in the 1956 London revival of The Threepenny Opera at London’s Royal Court Theatre, a role she repeated the following year when she joined the cast of the highly successful off-Broadway production. Three years later she received critical and public acclaim for her portrayal of Nancy in Lionel Bart’s musical Oliver! in the West End. She reprised the role in the 1963 Broadway production, earning a Tony Award nomination for her performance. The role of Nancy was originally written with Lionel Bart’s friend Alma Cogan in mind, but Cogan was unable to commit to the role, although she did record a soundtrack recording of Oliver! Brown lost out in the film version to friend Shani Wallis.

After a stint in Bart’s Maggie May in 1965, Brown concentrated on screen work in mostly forgettable films, with the exception of The Raging Moon (for which she was nominated for a BAFTA Award) and The Seven-Per-Cent Solution, for more than a decade.

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