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Jennifer Holliday first gained national recognition when she had
the lead in the Broadway musical Your Arm's Too Short to Box with God. Jennifer
Holliday performance led to her star-making performance in Dreamgirls, an
adaptation of The Supremes' saga. The show featured her show-stealing take on
"And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going," which became a hit single in 1982. That
led her to a career in pop music, although she never recaptured her initial
Jennifer Holliday returned to the stage in 1985, appearing in Sing, Mahalia, Sing; she continued to release pop music albums while starring on Broadway. In either setting, she's a hardy, throaty, soul belter who chews on every lyric, infusing them with emotional statements. Jennifer Holiday's vocal prowess is as awe-inspiring today as it was when she first hit Broadway.
Jennifer Holliday's magnificent performance in Dreamgirls is remembered as one of the most legendary triumphs in musical theatre. The performance won her a Tony Award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical and a Grammy award for her rendition of And I'm Telling You (I'm Not Going) . Her most famous song from that musical, "And I Am Telling You," climbed to #22 on the Hot 100 in 1982. She was a featured vocalist on the #1 single I Want to Know What Love Is by Foreigner in 1985.
Jennifer Holliday also hit #1 on the Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart three times, twice with the same song. "No Frills Love" hit the top spot in 1986 and then hit #1 again ten years later when the track was remixed. She then hit #1 again in 2000 with "Think It Over." A dance version of her debut single "And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going" hit #6 on the dance chart in 2001. Holliday possesses an enormous, dark contralto of great power and range, which she deploys with devastating force. Her gospel album "On & On" lays the roots of her style bare, and her rendition of the old hymn "It is well" is perhaps, after "I am telling you," one of her greatest performances.
Jennifer Holliday has also acted in several TV-series. She has done guest appearances in Touched By An Angel and Hang Time but is probably best known for her recurring guest role in Ally McBeal where she played lead choir singer Lisa Knowles.