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Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Remembering Georgia Engel 1948 - 2019

I was lucky enough to see Georgia Engel in two Chicago stage productions - Nunsense (as Sister Mary Amnesia) in August 1990 and Gotta Dance in December 2015. She was musical comedy perfection in both.

The actress, who died April 12 at age 70, will always be fondly remembered for her role as Georgette Franklin Baxter on the CBS sitcom, The Mary Tyler Moore Show. She first appeared on the show as Rhoda Morgenstern's co-worker in December 1972. Georgette soon became Ted Baxter's girlfriend and later his wife, and Engel received two Emmy Award nominations for her performance.

She also received three Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series for her recurring role as Pat MacDougall on the CBS sitcom, Everybody Loves Raymond (2003-05). Other television credits include The Betty White Show (1977-78), Goodtime Girls (1980), Jennifer Slept Here (1983-84), Coach (1991-97) and Hot in Cleveland (2012-15).

Engel received a BAFTA Award nomination for her film debut in Miloš Forman's Taking Off (1971), and her other movies include Signs of Life (1989), The Sweetest Thing (2002) and Grown Ups 2 (2013). She also appeared on Broadway in Hello, Dolly! (1969-70) as Minnie Fay, My One and Only (1984-85), The Boys from Syracuse (2002) and The Drowsy Chaperone (2006-07). And she won a 2016 Obie Award for her performance in the Off-Broadway play, John.

Below I've selected some videos to celebrate Georgia Engel's life and career.

Below are four episodes of The Mary Tyler Moore Show - "The Georgette Story" (January 20, 1973), "Almost a Nun's Story" (December 15, 1973), "Ted's Wedding" (November 8, 1975) and "Murray Can't Lose" (November 27, 1976) featuring Georgette's performance of "Steam Heat" at the Teddy Awards.

She played a stowaway on the ABC pilot movie, The New Love Boat, on May 5, 1977.

She played Mitzi Maloney on the 1977-78 CBS sitcom, The Betty White Show.

She was a guest on the ABC special, The Carpenters: A Christmas Portrait, on December 19, 1978.

She played a meter maid named Ambrosia Malspa in two episodes of the ABC sitcom, Mork & Mindy, in December 1979.

In 2007, she played a good witch named Esmeralda in six episodes of the NBC daytime soap opera,.Passions.

She played Mamie Sue Johnson on the TV Land sitcom, Hot in Cleveland (2012-15).

In 2015, she played a hip-hop-loving kindergarten teacher in the musical, Gotta Dance (which was renamed Half Time for a 2018 Paper Mill Playhouse production).

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