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PLACE, MARY KAY (1947- )

Born in Tulsa on September 23, 1947, actor, singer, songwriter, and script writer Mary Kay Place grew up in Oklahoma. After graduating from Nathan Hale High School in 1965, she attended the University of Tulsa, majored in radio-television production, and received a bachelor's degree in 1969. Moving to Hollywood, she worked as a production assistant for The Tim Conway Comedy Hour, on which she first appeared on camera. Her first script-writing credit came with an episode of Norman Lear's All in the Family, on which she made also a brief appearance. In 1976 Lear cast her in the nighttime soap opera Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman, as Loretta Haggers, an aspiring country music star. She won an Emmy in 1977 for her performance. During the show's two-year run she wrote and performed seventy-five songs and released an album of them that received a Grammy Award nomination. Place also wrote scripts for episodes of The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Phyllis, Maude, and M*A*S*H. An Emmy nomination came for a M*;A*S*H episode titled "Hot Lips and Empty Arms." Among her film acting credits are roles in Bound for Glory (1976), Private Benjamin (1980), The Big Chill (1983), and Being John Malkovich (1999). She continued to act and write into the twenty-first century.

SEE ALSO: RECREATION AND ENTERTAINMENT.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: Melanie Busch, "Actress Shares Inspiration," Tulsa (Oklahoma) World, 11 May 1994. International Television and Video Almanac (Groton, Mass.: Quigley Publishing Company, 2004). "Mary Kay Place," Vertical File, Research Division, Oklahoma Historical Society, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Dianna Everett

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