Lillias White (born July 21, 1951) is a Tony and Emmy award-winning American singer and actress. The Brooklyn, New York native made her Broadway debut in Barnum in 1981. She understudied the role of Effie in the original 1981 production of Dreamgirls and played the part in the 1987 revival. Ms. White has appeared on Broadway in Cats as Grizabella, Rock'N'Roll! The First 5000 Years, the ill-fated Carrie as the standby for Miss Gardner, Once on This Island as Asaka, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying as Miss Jones (a role rewritten for Ms.