Colleen Dewhurst


Colleen Dewhurst had been renown for her turns in the plays of Eugene O?Neill and Edward Albee and was considered the leading Broadway interpertor of Eugene O'Neill.

Colleen Dewhurst was born on June 3, 1926 in Montreal, Quebec. The Dewhurst family travelled often during Colleen's childhood, spending most of her formative years in the United States. Ms. Dewhurst moved to New York City, where she studied acting at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and privately under Joseph Anthony and Harold Clurman. She made her Broadway debut in a minor role in O'Neill's "Desire Under the Elms" (1952) and first gained notice as Kate in the 1956 New York Shakespeare Festival's production of "The Taming of the Shrew." In 1958 she appeared with George C. Scott in "Children of Darkness," and she acted with him in the title roles of "Antony and Cleopatra" the following year. She and Scott subsequently married and divorced twice.

Colleen Dewhurst's most notable roles in O'Neill plays were Abbie Putnam in "Desire Under the Elms" (1963), Sara Melody in "More Stately Mansions" (1967), Christine Mannon in "Mourning Becomes Electra" (1972), Josie Hogan in "A Moon for the Misbegotten" (1973), and Mary Tyrone in "Long Day's Journey Into Night" (1988). Among her other stage roles were those in "The Ballad of the Sad Cafe" (1963) and "You Can't Take It With You" (1983). In 1981, she won a Tony Award for her performance in the revival of O'Neill's "A Moon for the Misbegotten."

Despite her high praise as a stage actress, Dewhurst found little success as a film actress. She did however play Diane Keaton?s ultra-Waspy mother in "Annie Hall," (1977), and appeared numerous times on the "Murphy Brown" television series as Candice Bergen?s mother.

From 1985 through 1991, Colleen Dewhurst was president of Actors' Equity. Ms. Dewhurst died of cancer in 1991. She was 67 and is survived by her sons Alex and Campbell, who is also an actor. In her long career, Ms. Dewhurst won two Obies, two Tonys and four Emmys.

Appearances in the BDE Catalog:

Cast in Alice in Wonderland

Cast in Burning Bright

Cast in A Moon for the Misbegotten

200 OK


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