Swoosie Kurtz is an Emmy Award-winning actress, known for portraying Alex on the popular television drama series Sisters in 1991.
Date of birth
She was born on September 6, 1944, in Omaha, Nebraska, US.
She was born to Air Force Colonel Frank Allen Kurtz, Jr. and author Margaret "Margo" (née Rogers). She was their only child. Her father was an American ‘Olympic’ diver and served the ‘United States Army Air Forces’ as an aviator. He was a highly decorated Second World War American bomber pilot who derived his only daughter’s name "Swoosie" from the two B-17s he piloted with the 19th and the 463rd Bomb Groups, namely, ‘The Swoose‘ and ’Swoose II.’ Swoosie had to move frequently due to her father’s military service.
She studied at the ‘University of Southern California,’ where she majored in drama, and thereafter, studied at the ‘London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.’
From 1964 to 1970, Kurtz is said to have been romantically involved with Joshua White of the Joshua Light Show.
Not yet established.
She made her debut on TV in 1962, featuring in an episode of the popular ‘ABC’ sitcom ‘The Donna Reed Show,’ titled ‘The Golden Trap.’ The episode was aired in the fourth season of the series, in February that year.
At age eighteen, she took part in the American television panel game show ‘To Tell the Truth,’ where she succeeded to spot her father among two imposters.
She played Ann in the play ‘The Firebugs,’ at the ‘Martinique Theatre,’ on July 1, 1968, and July 7, 1968.
The 1975 revival of ‘Ah, Wilderness!’ marked her ‘Broadway’ debut. The play, a famous comedy by American playwright Eugene O'Neill, featured her as Muriel McComber. It was staged at the ‘Circle in the Square Theatre’ from September 18, 1975, to November 23, 1975.
She garnered widespread attention playing Rita Altabel in the first play of noted American playwright Wendy Wasserstein, titled ‘Uncommon Women and Others.’ Following a feature in a 1977 workshop at the ‘Eugene O'Neill Theater Center,’ Swoosie went on to feature in its ‘Off-Broadway’ production. The play was staged at the ‘Marymount Manhattan Theatre,’ New York, from November 17, 1977, to December 4, 1977.
While gradually gaining acclaim as a theatre actor, Swoosie made her film debut in the late 1970s. Her initial big-screen pursuits include featuring in flicks such as ‘Slap Shot’ (1977) and ‘Oliver's Story’ (1978).
She furthered her fame with the musical ‘A History of the American Film,’ which had its stage production at the ‘ANTA Playhouse,’ from March 30, 1978, to April 16, 1978. Her remarkable performance in the play, as Bette, earned her a ‘Drama Desk Award.’
Starting from the late 1970s, she featured in several TV movies, such as ‘Walking Through the Fire’ (1979), ‘Baja Oklahoma’ (1988), ‘The Image’ (1990), ‘And the Band Played On’ (1993), and ‘A Promise to Carolyn’ (1996). Of these, ‘Baja Oklahoma’ earned her a ‘Golden Globe’ nomination, and ‘The Image’ and ‘And the Band Played On’ won her a ‘Primetime Emmy Award’ nomination each.
Swoosie went on to prove her acting prowess once again, with her outstanding performance as Gwen Landis in the Lanford Wilson play ‘Fifth of July.’ The Broadway production of the play that was staged at the ‘New Apollo Theatre,’ from November 5, 1980, to January 24, 1982, saw her winning ‘Broadway's’ "triple crown," namely, the ‘Tony Award’, the ‘Drama Desk Award’ and the ‘Outer Critics Circle Award.’
The American TV sitcom ‘Love, Sidney,’ that saw her playing the starring role of Laurie Morgan, fetched the diva her first ‘Emmy Award’ nomination. The series aired on ‘NBC’ for two seasons, encompassing 44 episodes, from October 28, 1981, to June 6, 1983.
As she advanced her career with notable theatrical productions and television series, Swoosie appeared in several major Hollywood flicks. These included the 1983 Agatha Christie drama ‘Caribbean Mystery,' the 1988 historical drama ‘Dangerous Liaisons,’ the 1996 comedy ‘Citizen Ruth,’ the 1997 Jim Carrey-starrer blockbuster fantasy-comedy ‘Liar Liar,’ and the 1999 romantic teen-drama ‘Cruel Intentions.’
Her second ‘Tony Award’ came with the 1986 revival of the play ‘The House of Blue Leaves,’ where she essayed the role of Bananas. The revival had an ‘Off-Broadway’ premiere on March 19, 1986, at the ‘Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater’ at ‘Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.’ On April 29, 1986, it was transferred to ‘Broadway’ at the ‘Vivian Beaumont Theater.’ After staging there for five months, on October 14, 1986, the play was transferred to the ‘Plymouth Theatre,’ where it was staged till March 15, 1987.
She received three more ‘Tony Award’ nominations in her career. These include the ‘Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Play’ category for ‘Tartuffe’ (1988), and the category of ‘Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play’ for ‘Frozen’ (2004) and ‘Heartbreak House’ (2007).
Her guest role of Laurie in the 1990 episode of the American comedy-anthology series ‘Carol & Company,’ titled ‘Reunion,’ won her the only ‘Emmy Award’ of her career in the category ‘Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series.’
She furthered her fame with the popular TV series ‘Sisters,’ an ‘NBC’ drama that ran for six seasons, encompassing 127 episodes, from May 11, 1991, to May 4, 1996. The series emerged as a huge demographic hit due to its strong female viewership and saw her playing Alex Reed Halsey. It fetched her two ‘Emmy Award’ nominations.
Her next substantial TV role was that of Joyce Flynn in the popular American sitcom ‘Mike & Molly.’ It aired on ‘CBS’ for six seasons, encompassing 127 episodes, from September 20, 2010, to May 16, 2016.
Other notable TV series features of Swoosie include portraying Effie Conklin in 13 episodes of the sitcom ‘Love & Money’ (1999–2000), playing Madeleine Sullivan in eight episodes of the comedy series ‘Huff’ (2004–2006), and playing Marilyn in seven episodes of the sitcom ‘Rita Rocks’ (2009). Of these, her performance as Madeleine Sullivan earned her an ‘Emmy’ nomination.
She is set to reprise the role of Sheila in Call Me Kat (2021) television series.
|Born||6th September, 1944|
|Home City||Omaha, Nebraska, United States|