Billie Allen (Billie Allen)

Billie Allen

Actress. A versatile performer, she is remembered as one of the first black artists to achieve success on Broadway and to have a regular role in a television series. Born Wilhelmina Louise Allen, she was raised in Richmond’s West End, attended local schools as well as Hampton University, and in 1943 moved to New York to study dance and acting at the Lee Strasberg Institute. Miss Allen became a regular on the Great White Way both as a dancer and actress, bowing in “On the Town”, and made her 1949 silver screen debut in “Souls of Sin”. Continuing her work on Broadway where her credits included a revival of “Four Saints in Three Acts”, “My Darlin’ Aida”, a spoof of Verdi’s “Aida”, and “Critic’s Choice”, she also appeared in the television soap “The Edge of Night” and in the late 1950s had a regular role as a WAC on “The Phil Silvers Show”. Thru the 1960s, she stayed busy on and off Broadway and was seen in such small screen fare as “Route 66”, “Car 54, Where Are You?”, and “The Doctors and the Nurses”. Miss Allen last appeared on Broadway in 1969’s “A Teaspoon Every Four Hours” and gradually slowed her performing schedule, though she did make a few movies and earned special praise for her off Broadway part in “Funnyhouse of a Negro”; in the 1990s, she was seen “Law & Order” and in 1996 had her final credit on an episode of “The Prosecutors”. Widowed in 2003, she lived out her days in Manhattan and died of the effects of advanced age. (bio by: Bob Hufford)

Born

  • January, 13, 1925
  • USA

Died

  • December, 12, 2015
  • USA

Cemetery

  • Riverside Church Columbarium
  • USA

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