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Vicki Lawrence (born Vicki Ann Axelrad; March 26, 1949) is an American actress, comedienne, and Billboard Hot 100 #1 singer, who was frequently a game show panelist in the 1970s and 1980s. She is best known for her co-starring role on The Carol Burnett Show, alongside Carol Burnett, from 1967 to 1978, and as the sharp-tongued matriarch, Thelma Harper (the main character on Mama's Family, airing from 1983 to 1990, which was spun off from The Carol Burnett Show's The Family sketches). As a singer she recorded The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia that made #1 on the US chart as well as in Canada. She is credited with co-authoring two books and has also used the name Vicki Lawrence Schultz. Lawrence was born in Inglewood, California, the daughter of Anne Alene (née Loyd) and Howard Axelrad, a certified public accountant. She is a graduate of Morningside High School in Inglewood. She was valedictorian of her class of 1967. As a comedienne and actress, Lawrence is known for her work on The Carol Burnett Show, of which she was a part from 1967 to 1978. She was the only cast member, except for Burnett herself, who stayed on the show for the entire eleven seasons.