Dee Hoty grew up in Lakewood and discovered musical theater in high school. After studying at Otterbein College, she began her professional career at the Cleveland Play House in 1975 as a member of the repertory company and moved to New York two years later, when she was 25. Since then, she’s been hard at work, scoring raves as a leading lady both onstage and on TV. After 25 years in the biz, she’s racked up a long and impressive résumé, topped by three Best Actress Tony nominations (for The Will Rogers Follies in 1991, for The Best Little Whorehouse Goes Public in 1994 and in 1999 for Footloose). Her TV credits include several episodes of Law & Order. She returns to Cleveland tonight as the headliner of the De-Lightful, De-Lovely, Dee Hoty! benefit. The party — which includes cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, dinner, a silent auction, a performance by Hoty and music by Afterthought & the NuSoul Band — starts at 6:30 p.m. at the Cleveland Playhouse (8500 Euclid Ave., 216.795.7000). Tickets: $250-$1,000. — Michael Gill
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