Lillian Miller

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"Miss Miller" redirects here. She is not to be confused with Mrs. Miller, a 1960s singer.

Lillian Dorothy Miller (May 26, 1897 in Massachusetts – April 1, 1990 in Los Angeles, California),[1] better known as Miss Miller, was a regular audience member of various American television variety shows from the 1950s to the 1980s.

Miller was first a regular audience member of The Tonight Show throughout Steve Allen's and Jack Paar's tenures as host. Miss Miller was even brought along when the New York City-based show would go on location to places such as Havana, Cuba, Hollywood, California, and Niagara Falls. She became such a fixture on the show that she was forced to join the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, the TV actors' union.

When Paar left Tonight to start his prime-time Jack Paar Program in 1962, Miss Miller then became a regular on that program, as well as on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson and The Merv Griffin Show. On at least one Paar program, shown on November 29, 1962, Miss Miller was an on-stage guest alongside Liberace and Cassius Clay. Even with numerous network and syndicator changes, as well as a changing of base from New York to Hollywood, Miss Miller remained a fixture on Griffin's program throughout its run which ended in 1986. She was sometimes featured in the commercials for Griffin's show. She was also a regular on The Carol Burnett Show, frequently bantering with Burnett during the program's opening question-and-answer with the audience.

During the mid-80s, Miss Miller was a frequent guest at The Limelight in Atlanta, Georgia. She hosted parties, met with then-mayor Andrew Young and danced the night away with other celebrities. She had been photographed many times by entertainment photographer Guy D'Alema when she was in the Limelight.

Miss Miller had a daytime job as a government typist, but retired in 1958 due to eye trouble. She began her audience career with radio programs in 1940, in New York. In 1948 she was living in Hollywood, California. She first went on stage in 1949, helping Sammy Kaye lead his band on his radio show So You Want to Lead a Band. In 1950, she moved back East, to New York City, then to Philadelphia, and then back to New York City.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ California death index, 1940–1997.
  2. ^ "The 'Queen of the Studio Audience". Oakland Tribune. December 16, 1966. p. 14A.  (Originally in Newsday.)

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