Swoosie Kurtz

The title of playwright Wendy Wasserstein's 1977 off-Broadway hit, "Uncommon Women and Others," accurately described the roles which brought original cast member Swoosie Kurtz several awards and universal renown as a character actress par excellence. In the years since she first caught theatergoers' attention with her quirky performance as a sex-obsessed Mount Holyoke graduate in Wasserstein's semi-autobiographical ensemble drama, Kurtz demonstrated her formidable range on stage, screen and television for decades to come. She made a memorable impression in a brief appearance as a world-weary prostitute in "The World According to Garp" (1982) before hitting the stage for a number of roles, including her Tony-winning performance in "The House of Blue Leaves" (1986). After several years bouncing around various mediums, Kurtz started making a name for herself as one of four "Sisters" (NBC, 1991-96) and in notable supporting roles in major features like "Liar Liar" (1997). Following rather thankless parts in "Bubble Boy" (2001) and "Rules of Attraction" (2002), she played a grieving mother confronting her daughter's killer in Broadway's "Frozen" (2004) before landing a regular series role as an ex-synchronized swimmer on "Pushing Daisies" (ABC, 2007-09) respectively. Even as she slummed by taking recurring roles in rather mediocre sitcoms like "Suddenly Susan" (NBC, 1996-2000) and "Still Standing"(CBS, 2002-06), Kurtz maintained her reputation as a critical darling and one of the finest character actresses working in the business.