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Broadway's Talented 40s-50s Women Appreciation Thread -- do roles get better as women get older?

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Wanna Be A Foster
Broadway Legend
joined:1/9/05
Broadway Legend
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Look at all the stunning 40s-50s actresses we have on Broadway. Is it just me or do the roles for women seem to get much richer as they age? Examples of Actresses/Roles: Vicki Clark (Piazza), Judy Kaye (Souvenir), Patti LuPone (Norma, Mrs. Lovett), Bernadette (Gypsy), Patti Cohenour (Nacarelli), Maureen Moore (every Tony-winner's standby), Eileen Atkins (The Retreat from Moscow, among others). These are devoted actresses of the theatre and we are so lucky to have them. Let there be many upcoming roles to showcase these wonderful women's talents!
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kgee30
Stand-by
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I think so -- the roles get richer, and scarcer, just as the women themselves get more interesting, and more interesting as actresses.
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Rathnait62
Broadway Legend
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Debra Monk, Bebe Neuwirth, Karen Ziemba, Andrea Martin, Cherry Jones, Kathleen Turner, Marin Mazzie... there are a good number of them.

And I believe Eileen Atkins is a bit past the age range you have listed here.
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Isabella2
Broadway Star
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i think it depends on the actor, but i also with think with age, knowledge and experiance women get better roles and conquer them easily. as women get older people recognize them as accomplished and want to see them in more if they're good.

There such a beauty in theatre, that i love, when a woman in her 40s could pull of looking in her 20s, which couldn't work in the movies.
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The Distinctive Baritone
Broadway Legend
joined:8/28/04
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Well, if you look at it, Broadway tends to cast "older"--it often seems that everyone is playing roles ten years younger than they are. So really, most of Broadway's best leading ladies (and men) are in their forties.
Jon
Broadway Legend
joined:2/20/04
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I'm hoping FIRST WIVES' CLUB actually happens - with some of the above mentioned names. How about Karen, Bebe and Marin???
Creative Lunatic
Leading Actor
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Leading Actor
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Add Maria Friedman and Joanna Gleason to the glorious list. Also don't forget those who like Chita Rivera have long surpased those decades.
I also think that because in theater you do not have the unforgiving close ups that is characteristic of film, stage actresses can play a wider range of age. That being said, I do think theater has great appreciation for enormously talented
and gifted veteran actresses and does not just create vehicles around the ingenue.
I do have enormous respect for mature actors of both sexes who still have the stamina to do eight shows a week on Broadway in long runs. I also think what translates on stage is how much these older actors appreciate that they are still working in the craft that they love.
Leading Actor
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Leading Actor
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That's one great thing about the stage vs. TV or movies. It's definitely easier to play younger onstage than in the ego-deflating close-ups in TV & movies.
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Rathnait62
Broadway Legend
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I'd love to see that, Jon.

Unfortunately, it will more likely be Rosie O'Donnell, Melanie Griffith, and Renee Zellweger.
Have I ever shown you my Shattered Dreams box? It's in my Disappointment Closet. - Marge Simpson