September 2010, Volume 14, Number 4

Alumni News

Capturing a Tony, again

Katie Finneran
Katie Finneran

Film, TV and stage, Katie Finneran as done it all, and done it exceedingly well. So it came as no surprise to anyone – especially at New World School of the Arts (NWSA) at MDC, her initial training arena – when she recently took home her second Tony Award.

Finneran was named Best Featured Actress in a Musical for her role in the first revival of Promises, Promises, with music and lyrics by Burt Bacharach and Hal David. The musical, adapted from a book by Neil Simon, is based on Billy Wilder’s 1960 film The Apartment. Although Finneran appears in only two scenes of the musical, she makes good use of that scant stage time, winning over the audience and stealing the show.

After graduating from NWSA, the Chicago native who was raised in Miami headed to Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. But Broadway beckoned, and barely a year later, at age 19, she moved to New York City.

Two decades later, Finneran has a slew of film, theater and TV roles on her résumé, including the lead in George Romero’s remake of Night of the Living Dead, along with TV roles in Sex and the City, Frasier and Oz.

With such a wide-ranging career, her most highly lauded work has happened on stage, where she has played everything from Sally Bowles in the Tony-award winning revival of Cabaret to a supporting role opposite Kevin Spacey in Eugene O'Neill's classic The Iceman Cometh.

But it was her performance as Brooke Ashton in Noises Off that would win her both the Tony and Drama Desk Award for Best Featured Actress in 2002.

Now, much to everyone's delight here at MDC, she's captured a second Tony.

“Whenever an actor triumphs, it is a victory for all of us who love theater,” said Jeffrey Hodgson, NWSA’s interim provost. “But when it is one of our own graduates, who spent their formative years at our institution, our joy and pride are justifiably boundless.”

— HP

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