SWOOSIE KURTZ Biography - Actors and Actresses


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Name: Swoosie Kurtz                                                                     
Born: 6 September 1944 Omaha, Nebraska, U.S.                                           
Swoosie Kurtz (born September 6, 1944) is a Primetime Emmy- and Tony Award-winning     
American actress. She currently stars as Lily Charles in the ABC series Pushing         
Kurtz was born in Omaha, Nebraska, the only child of author Margo (nee Rogers)         
and Air Force Colonel Frank Kurtz, Jr., a much-decorated WWII American bomber           
pilot. She got her unique first name "Swoosie" (which rhymes with Lucy,                 
rather than woozy) from her father. It is derived from the sole surviving               
example, at the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum, of the B-17D Flying       
Fortress airplane, named "The Swoose" or simply "Swoose" - half swan, half goose       
- which her father piloted during World War II. Kurtz's first television               
appearance was on To Tell the Truth at age eighteen, introducing her father and         
two impostors. As a military brat, Kurtz moved frequently. Kurtz attended the           
University of Southern California, where she majored in drama. She then attended       
the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.                                           
Kurtz first gained attention in the late 70s in Uncommon Women and Others, the         
breakthrough play by Wendy Wasserstein. Kurtz was soon was awarded Broadway's "triple   
crown" (the Tony, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle awards) for her portrayal       
of Gwen in Lanford Wilson's The Fifth of July. She won a second Tony for her           
performance as Bananas in a 1986 revival of The House of Blue Leaves by John           
In 1978, she was part of the ensemble cast of Mary Tyler Moore's short lived           
variety series Mary, that also included David Letterman and Michael Keaton.             
Later, Kurtz had starring roles in the television series Love, Sidney and               
Sisters. She has also received an Emmy for her guest-starring performance on           
Carol Burnett's comedy series Carol & Company, playing a woman who attends her         
20th high-school reunion and discovers her former sweetheart a football player         
has been through a sex change operation. Recently, Kurtz has had a recurring           
guest role as Judy Miller's mother on the CBS sitcom Still Standing, John Locke's       
mother, Emily Annabeth Locke, on Lost, and as Beth Huffstodt's mother on Huff.         
She stars in the current ABC television series, Pushing Daisies as Lily Charles.       
Kurtz frequently received stellar reviews even in less praised projects, and she       
is widely respected as one of Hollywood's most sought-after supporting actresses,       
doing a lot of work she would rather not so as to pay the bills and be able to         
really act in the theatre.                                                             
She has never married or had children. Kurtz was mentioned in the press with           
Brent Spiner in the 80s.