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Sweet Mystery

WILLIAM V. MADISON remembers Madeline Kahn, the brilliant comedienne who created Trixie Delight, Lili von Shtupp and other iconic movie roles of the '70s, and who almost chose a career as an opera singer.

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Kahn as Musetta in Washington, 1970
Courtesy of Jeffrey Kahn
That note! Madeline Kahn's sustained "Ah!" on A-flat, the first volley in Victor Herbert's "Ah! Sweet Mystery of Life" and the climax of Mel Brooks's Young Frankenstein — has any singer ever made more...

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Current Issue: September 2014 — VOL. 79, NO. 3