African American actress Claudia McNeil came to the New York stage in the early 1950s after 25 solid years' experience as a singer. McNeil first worked in this capacity for the Katharine Dunham dance company, then toured as a single all over the world. She made her dramatic debut in the 1953 staging of The Crucible. Her first film--and one of her favorites--was 1959's The Last Angry Man. Though her biggest Broadway and London success was 1970's The Amen Corner, McNeil is most fondly remembered as Lena Younger in the Broadway and movie versions of Lorraine Hansbury's A Raisin in the Sun. After a long period of inactivity, Claudia McNeil died of diabetes at the age of 76.