Ann Reinking, Tony Winner and 'Chicago' Star, Dead at 71

Broadway legend Ann Reinking has died. The celebrated actress and dancer died Saturday night, at the age of 71.

Reinking’s sister-in-law shared the news in a statement published by Variety, that mourned the family’s loss while celebrating Reinking’s legacy.

“The world and our family have lost a vibrant, amazing talent and beautiful soul,” Dahrla King shared in the statement, shared on Monday. “Ann was the heart of our family and the life of the party.”

“She was visiting our brother in Washington state when she went to sleep and never woke up,” King revealed. “We will miss her more than we can say. Heaven has the best choreographer available now. I’m sure they are dancing up a storm up there! Annie, we will love and miss you always!!!”

King also posted a tribute to the Broadway star on Facebook, sharing, “Rest in peace and power, my beautiful sis, mentor, friend. We will love and miss your vibrancy forever!!!”

Reinking began her professional theater career with a 1965 production of Bye Bye Birdie at the Seattle Opera House before moving to Broadway after being cast as part of the ensemble for the 1969 staging of Cabaret. 

Her biggest role came in 1977 when she replaced Gwen Verdon in the role of Roxie Hart in Chicago. She reprised the role in 1996 for the Chicago revival, and earned a Tony Award for her choreography work on the production.

Some of Reinking’s other notable productions include Sweet Charity and Goodtime Charley, among many others. 

Reinking also appeared on screen, most notably in the 1979 biopic All That Jazz, in which she played a fictionalized version of herself, and in the 1982 adaptation of Annie.

She is survived by her husband, Peter Talbert, and her son, Chris.

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