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Zoe Caldwell/photo by Judy AxensonZOE CALDWELL

Winner of Four TONY Awards

NYS Writers Institute, April 24, 2008

4:15 p.m. Seminar | Recital Hall, Performing Arts Center
8:00 p.m. Reading | Recital Hall, Performing Arts Center



I Will Be CleopatraZoe Caldwell, winner of four Tony awards, is considered one of the leading classical actors of our time. Born in Australia at the height of the Great Depression, she first demonstrated her talents at the age of nine when she appeared on stage as Slightly Spoiled in "Peter Pan." She appeared in national radio soap operas as a teenager and when she was 25 she began a Shakespearean acting career at Stratford-on-Avon that culminated in her stunning portrayal of Cleopatra.

Caldwell recounts her early theatrical career in her autobiography, I Will Be Cleopatra: An Actress's Journey (2001). Based on lectures she gave at the New York Public Library, the book describes such fellow performers, writers, and directors as Charles Laughton, Albert Finney, Edith Evans, Paul Robeson, Laurence Olivier, and Tennessee Williams, as well as providing insight into the actor's craft. It is more than a gossip column or tell-all book:

Master Class Poster"a cross between an autobiography and a primer for anyone entering the theatre or who enjoys attending it. . .made singular by its author's common sense, modesty, and sharp powers of observations and articulation." - Publishers Weekly

"Caldwell delivers her material in print as she does on stage, with high-impact, economy, and great timing." - San Francisco Chronicle Book Review

Zoe Caldwell, NYS Writers Institute, 10/29/02Caldwell has appeared with most of the great companies of the English-speaking world. On Broadway she won four Tony Awards for her performances in Slapstick Tragedy (1966) by Tennessee Williams, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1968) by Jay Presson Allen, Medea (1982), and Master Class (1996) by Terrence McNally. She appeared off-Broadway in Colette and in Terrence McNally's A Perfect Ganesh. She played Emma Hamilton in Terrence Rattigan's Bequest to the Nation in London; Cleopatra opposite Christopher Plummer's Antony in Stratford, Ontario; in Long Day's Journey Into Night opposite Jason Robards at the Kennedy Center and BAM; and Lillian Hellman in Lillian at the Kennedy Center and on Broadway. Her portrayals on television include Medea, Sarah Bernhardt, Mme. Arkadina in The Seagull, and Carlotta Monterey O'Neill in Eugene O'Neill, A Glory of Ghosts. Ms. Caldwell directed An Almost Perfect Person with Colleen Dewhurst and Richard II in Stratford, Ontario; the award-winning Broadway production of Othello starring James Earl Jones and Christopher Plummer; Park Your Car in Harvard Yard starring Jason Robards and Judith Ivey; and, most recently, the off-Broadway production of Vita & Virginia starring Vanessa Redgrave and Eileen Atkins.

Addtional Links:
Sarah film screening
TheatreMania Interview

For additional information, contact the Writers Institute at 518-442-5620 or online at https://www.albany.edu/writers-inst.