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Judith Light

Judith Light

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Also Known As: Judith Ellen Licht Died:
Born: February 9, 1949 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Trenton, New Jersey, USA Profession: actress

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Emmy Award-winning television actress Judith Light enjoyed a lengthy career on the small screen for portrayals of women both scandalous and supremely capable. After an early, impressive start on the stages of Broadway, Light reluctantly took on the role of wife-by-day/prostitute-by-night, Karen Wolek, on "One Life to Live" (ABC, 1968- ) in 1977. Much to her surprise and delight, the scene-stealing character would earn her two Emmys before her departure in 1983. As memorable as her daytime role may have been, the actress would be forever connected to her next character, ad-exec Angela Bower, the uptight romantic foil to Tony Danza on the long-running sitcom "Who's The Boss?" (ABC, 1984-1992). A dedicated activist for AIDS awareness and an advocate for the LGBT community, Light's behind-the-scenes efforts were recognized when the library at the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center was named in her honor in 1998. In direct contrast to her "Who's the Boss?" character, she brilliantly embodied the mentally unstable, alcoholic publishing maven Claire Meade on "Ugly Betty" (ABC, 2006-2010) throughout its run. Unafraid to take chances or play against type, Light amassed an impressively consistent list of...

Emmy Award-winning television actress Judith Light enjoyed a lengthy career on the small screen for portrayals of women both scandalous and supremely capable. After an early, impressive start on the stages of Broadway, Light reluctantly took on the role of wife-by-day/prostitute-by-night, Karen Wolek, on "One Life to Live" (ABC, 1968- ) in 1977. Much to her surprise and delight, the scene-stealing character would earn her two Emmys before her departure in 1983. As memorable as her daytime role may have been, the actress would be forever connected to her next character, ad-exec Angela Bower, the uptight romantic foil to Tony Danza on the long-running sitcom "Who's The Boss?" (ABC, 1984-1992). A dedicated activist for AIDS awareness and an advocate for the LGBT community, Light's behind-the-scenes efforts were recognized when the library at the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center was named in her honor in 1998. In direct contrast to her "Who's the Boss?" character, she brilliantly embodied the mentally unstable, alcoholic publishing maven Claire Meade on "Ugly Betty" (ABC, 2006-2010) throughout its run. Unafraid to take chances or play against type, Light amassed an impressively consistent list of credits for more than 30 years.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Digging for Fire (2015)
3.
 Last Weekend (2014)
4.
 Broken Sole, A (2007)
5.
 Save Me (2007)
6.
 Ira & Abby (2006)
7.
 Joseph: King of Dreams (2000) Voice Of Zuleika
8.
 Carriers (1998) Mamor Carmen Travis
9.
 Too Close to Home (1997) Diana Donahue
10.
 Step Toward Tomorrow, A (1996) Anna Lerner
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1970:
Made professional debut in "Richard III" at the California Shakespeare Festival
1971:
Acted in repertory companies based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Seattle, Washington
1975:
Made Broadway debut in a revival of Henrik Ibsen's "A Doll's House"
1977:
Breakthrough role, as housewife turned prostitute Karen Wolek on the ABC soap "One Life to Live"
1983:
First TV-movie, "Intimate Agony" (ABC)
1984:
Played assertive advertising executive Angela Bower opposite Tony Danza on the popular ABC sitcom "Who's the Boss?"
1989:
Portrayed Ryan White's mother Jeanne White in "The Ryan White Story," about the 13-year-old hemophiliac who contracted AIDS
1993:
Played Dianne Doolan on the short-lived ABC sitcom "Phenom"
1996:
Made producing debut with the CBS drama "A Husband, a Wife and a Lover"'; also starred
1997:
Portrayed a suffocating mother in "Too Close to Home" opposite Rick Schroder
1998:
Filmed first feature role in the indie "Toscano"
1998:
Starred on the short-lived CBS sitcom "The Simple Life"
1999:
Returned to the NYC stage assuming the role of a cancer-stricken teacher in the Pulitzer Prize-winning off-Broadway play "Wit"
2002:
Co-starred in the off-Broadway staging of "Sorrows & Rejoicings"
2002:
Landed recurring role as a judge on the NBC drama "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit"
2006:
Played Claire Meade, the alcoholic mother of magazine editors Daniel and Alexis Meade on ABC's "Ugly Betty"; earned an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series
2007:
Co-starred in "Ira and Abby," a comedy feature co-starring, written and produced by Jennifer Westfeldt
2010:
Cast as the famed football coach's wife in the Broadway production of Eric Simonson's "Lombardi"; earned a Tony nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play
2012:
Co-starred with Rachel Griffiths, Stacy Keach, and Stockard Channing in the critically acclaimed play "Other Desert Cities" on Broadway
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Education

St. Mary's Hall: Burlington , New Jersey - 1966
Carnegie-Mellon University: Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania - 1971

Notes

Not to be confused with the poet of the same name.

"Celebrity is pretty hollow if you don't use it to change the planet." --Judith Light in an interview with David Mixner at www.gay.com

Companions close complete companion listing

husband:
Robert Desiderio. Married on New Year's Day 1985.

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