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Dorothy Jean Dandridge was born on November 91922 in Cleveland Ohio Her parents Cyril and Ruby Dandridge had a troubled marriage which eventually lead to them going their separate ways Ruby met the new love of her life a woman later was much despised by Dottie She was very domineering and abusive toward Rubys two children especially Dottie Early in their youth Ruby and her friend trained them for performing onstage Between the ages 4-6 depending on who you ask was about the time Dorothy and Vivian began performing publicly in Baptist churches and they toured the country as the gospel singing act the Wonder Children Around the 1930s Dottie Vivian joined a third girl Etta Jones in a song and dance act known as the Dandridge Sisters Hard times and the Great Depression forced them to move to Hollywood where at age16 Dandridge SistersDorothy danced with Bill Bojangles Robinson in The Big Broadcast of 1936 The same year she sang at legendary Cotton Club in Harlem where she first met Harold Nicholas her future husband Harold was the younger member of the Nicholas Brothers They danced with Gene Kelly in The Pirate At 17she was performing in Benny Goodmans musical Swinging the DreamDorothy Dandridge had a natural beauty and an ideal figure to match Dottie suffered from severe stage fright but despite this she played the best hotels in Miami and Las Vegas although she couldnt stay in them One in 1953 drained its swimming pool to keep her out of it In 1954 Dandridge became the first black woman to appear on the cover of Life and received an Academy Award nomination for best actress for her role in Carmen Jones But because the industry still could not see her potential as an serious actress mainly because of her race roles for her faded quickly as well as her career Eventually she ended up working on cruise ships series TV and in the
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