Credit: Michael Yarish/FOX © 2010 Fox Broadcasting Co.    
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Who Is Carol Burnett and Why Is She on Glee?

In anticipation of this week’s episode of Glee, we got to thinking about the special guest appearance and began worrying: Will Carol Burnett’s name fall upon deaf ears? Do people still know who she is? Granted, the Glee audience spans many generations — but we’re concerned that the younger folk might not know who Carol is. And they should know, so we wanted to do a little Glee edumacation 101 to tell you exactly who she is and why you need to be super excited about her appearance in Episode 2.8, “Furt.”

Like Lea Michele (Rachel), Carol Burnett had Broadway beginnings: She appeared in the 1959 musical Once Upon a Mattress. Prior to Broadway, Carol worked the New York circuit of cabarets and night clubs with an emphasis on musical comedy. As her career blossomed on Broadway and on the small screen, Carol collaborated with the likes of Lucille Ball (if you don’t know who she is, there’s really no hope for you) and Julie Andrews.

Carol nabbed her first Emmy in 1962 in the category of “Outstanding Performance in a Variety or Musical Program” for her appearance on The Garry Moore Show, with countless nominations and other wins following.

Perhaps the biggest feather in Carol’s cap is her eponymous show, The Carol Burnett Show, which aired from 1967 to 1978. It was an extremely successful madcap variety show, which garnered a whopping 23 Emmy Awards during its run.

Sure, we could continue to talk your ear off about how amazing this woman is, but we figure we’ll just let you enjoy a few videos of her work. She’s funny and witty for sure, but most importantly? The woman can sing!

11.24.2010 / 01:01 AM EDT by Heidi Suke
Related: Glee, Gossip

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