Madeline Kahn

Madeline Kahn

American actress
Date of Birth: 29.09.1942
Country: USA

Madeline Kahn Biography

Madeline Kahn, born as Madeline Gail Wolfson, was an American actress. She was born in 1942 in Boston, Massachusetts. Her parents, Paula Kahn and Bernard Wolfson, were Jewish but kept their religious identity a secret to avoid legal troubles. When Madeline was 2 years old, her parents divorced, but they remarried a few years later. In 1948, she was sent to an elite school in Pennsylvania, where she lived and studied until 1952. During this time, her mother pursued her acting career, which she had always dreamed of.

Madeline Kahn

After finishing school, Madeline received a scholarship to study theater arts and music at Hofstra University. In 1964, she earned her bachelor's degree. Her first theatrical role was in the musical "Kiss Me, Kate," and she was soon invited to join the Actors' Equity Association, an organization advocating for equal rights for all theater actors. In 1967, Madeline made her Broadway debut with the play "How Now, Dow Jones." Over the next few years, she participated in numerous productions, including "Promises, Promises" and "New Faces of 1968."

Madeline Kahn

In 1968, Madeline landed the leading role in the operetta "Candide," performed in honor of the composer Leonard Bernstein's 50th anniversary. Shortly after, she appeared in the play "Promenade," which, unfortunately, did not make it to Broadway. In the 1970s, Madeline graced the main stages of New York City twice. First, she starred in the musical "Two by Two," directed and composed by Richard Rodgers. Later, in 1978, she played in the play "On the Twentieth Century."

Madeline Kahn

Madeline made her television debut in 1968 with the short film "De Duva: The Dove." Her first significant role came in 1972, when she appeared in Peter Bogdanovich's comedy "What's Up, Doc?" alongside stars such as Barbra Streisand and Ryan O'Neal. A year later, she received an offer to appear in the comedy "Paper Moon" and gladly accepted it. For her role in this film, she later won an Oscar.

Madeline Kahn

Following the success of her early films, Madeline continued to play roles in various movies, with the majority being comedies. In the 1970s, she appeared in multiple films, but her fame was primarily attributed to her roles in "Blazing Saddles," "Young Frankenstein," and "High Anxiety." Throughout the 1980s, Madeline remained popular, but her popularity declined in the 1990s. In 1990, she starred in the production "Born Yesterday," and three years later, she performed in "The Sisters Rosensweig," for which she received a Tony Award.

In the mid-1990s, Madeline also provided her voice for one of the characters in the animated film "The Magic 7." Her last on-screen appearance was in the 1999 film "Judy Berlin." In the same year, Madeline was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. A few months later, she married her longtime companion, John Hansbury, in October. However, just two months after their wedding, on December 3, Madeline Kahn passed away in her own home at the age of 57.

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