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Legendary Costume Designer — the First to Win an Emmy — Dead at 83

Oct 13, 2011  •  Post A Comment

The first costume designer to win an Emmy died Tuesday in Los Angeles, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The Iranian-born Ray Aghayan, 83, died of unknown causes, the Archive of American Television announced.

In his time as a leading designer, Aghayan created costumes for Barbra Streisand, Diana Ross, Judy Garland and others, and even designed costumes for the 1984 Summer Olympics.

Aghayan started his career in television in the 1950s, with his early work including creating costumes for “Matinee Theatre” in 1957, “An Evening With Fred Astaire” in 1958, “The Roy Rogers & Dale Evans Show” in 1962 and "The Judy Garland Show" in 1963. He won the first Emmy awarded for costume design in 1967, for NBC’s "Alice Through the Looking Glass."

Aghayan teamed with Bob Mackie, his former assistant, to build a legendary costume design partnership. They shared an Oscar nomination for Streisand’s 1975 feature "Funny Lady," one of three nominations for Aghayan.

Aghayan was a longtime costume designer for the Academy Awards broadcast, for which he received five Emmy nominations and won the Emmy in 1992. He also won an Emmy in 1987 for “Diana Ross: Red Hot Rhythm and Blues.”

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Ray Aghayan

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