She's the punchline to just about every snarky remark about cheesy awards show production numbers (all of them that don't include Rob Lowe and Snow White), but let's cut her a break today and point out that, at age 60 she represents a somewhat rare bird: a woman of color over the age of 40 with almost A-list name recognition (don't believe me--ask 3 people this weekend if they know who "Debbie Allen" is... all 3 of them will kinda know... THAT'S almost A-list).
She has 3 Emmys (with an additional 15 nominations) and 2 Tony nominations (plus a Drama Desk award win), and a bunch of Image Awards (which are like World's Greatest Grandpa mugs--there are plenty to go around).
She's been performing for 40 years now, but you only think about her in Fame, the TV show, don't you? Here she is in a revival of West Side Story.
Here she is with Gregory Hines in one of those (cough) beloved production numbers from the Oscars in the early 80s with my favorite Oscars host, Johnny Carson.
And finally, because I don't have a way to wrap this up, here's a fan video made for her. It's a hot mess of clips which is, in a way, a fan-made production number FOR HER. Take that Debbie Allen.
Happy birthday dude! Rock on!