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Happy Birthday To New Rochelle's Frances Sternhagen

Frances Sternhagen turns 84 Jan. 13.
Frances Sternhagen turns 84 Jan. 13. Photo Credit: Wikipedia

NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y.-- Happy Birthday to New Rochelle's Frances Sternhagen.

Frances Hussey Sternhagen, who lives in New Rochelle, turns 85 Jan. 13.

Sternhagen, an actress, was born in Washington, D.C., the daughter of John M. Sternhagen, a U.S. Tax Court judge, and Gertrude (Hussey), on Jan. 13, 1930.

She was educated at the Madeira and Potomac schools in McLean, Va.

At Vassar College she was elected head of the Drama Club "after silencing a giggling college crowd at a campus dining hall with her interpretation of a scene from Richard II, playing none other than Richard himself".

She also studied at the Perry Mansfield School of the Theatre, and New York City's Neighborhood Playhouse.

Sternhagen was married to the late Thomas Carlin from 1956 until his death in 1991 and has six children.

Sternhagen made her Broadway debut in 1955 as Miss T. Muse in The Skin of Our Teeth. The same year she had her Off-Broadway debut in "Thieves' Carnival" and her TV debut in "The Great Bank Robbery" on "Omnibus" (CBS). By the following year she had won an off-Broadway Obie Award for "Distinguished Performance (Actress)" in The Admirable Bashville (1955–56).

She has won two Tony awards, for "Best Supporting Actress (Dramatic)": in 1974 for the original Broadway production of Neil Simon's The Good Doctor and in 1995 for the revival of The Heiress, based on the Henry James novella.

Her best-known Off-Broadway role was her feisty portrayal of the title character in 1988's Pulitzer prize-winning drama Driving Miss Daisy which was originated by Dana Ivey at Playwrights Horizons in New York

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