Dory Previn, Oscar-Nominated Songwriter, Dies at 86

After her marriage to composer Andre Previn dissolved, she drew on her struggles with mental illness in a series of pop albums

Oscar-nominated singer and songwriter Dory Previn died at her home in Massachusetts on Tuesday. She was 86.

No cause of death has yet been reported.

Though perhaps best known as the former wife of collaborator Andre Previn, she was an accomplished musician in her own right.

Working alongside her husband, she picked up Oscar noms for “Faraway Part of Town” from the 1961 film “Pepe” and “Second Chance” from 1961’s “Two for The Seesaw.”

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Their most famous work together was the theme song from 1967’s “Valley of the Dolls.”

After separating from her husband following his affair with the actress Mia Farrow, Previn went on to mine her struggles with mental illness and her failed marriage into a series of successful pop albums.

Among her most notable records were “Mythical Kings and Iguanas” (1971), “Reflections in a Mud Puddle/Taps Tremors and Time Steps” (1971), and “Mary C. Brown and the Hollywood Sign” (1972).

She also continued to write music for films, including the theme song to the 1973 classic “Last Tango in Paris,” as well as a pair of autobiographies, "Midnight Baby: an Autobiography" (1976) and "Bogtrotter: An Autobiography with Lyrics" (1980).

In 1984 she married actor and artist Joby Baker, who survives her.