Kate Reid

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Kate Reid

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    Anirban Sengupta
    Anirban Senguptawrote on 09 Feb 2012

    Esteemed London-born stage, radio and TV actress Kate Reid was actually born Daphne Katherine Reid in 1930 of Canadian parents. The family moved back to Ontario before she was a year old. An introverted child of delicate health, Kate sought refuge in books and role-playing and began studying drama in her mid-teens. She apprenticed in summer stock and trained with Uta Hagen and Herbert Berghof at the HB Studio in New York. Earning critical acclaim for her Lizzie in "The Rainmaker" and Masha in "The Three Sisters," her ten years with the Stratford Festival in Canada would establish her as one of Canada's most accomplished actresses. On the Shakespearean stage she would play everything from Lady Macbeth to the shrewish Katherine. A bulky, highly insecure woman, Kate tended to look and play older than she was, battling alcohol and weight problems throughout much of her life. She was to have taken "The Rainmaker" to England's West End at one point but severe anxiety attacks kept her from doing so. She made her Broadway debut playing the matinée Martha in Edward Albee's "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" in 1962 in which her legendary mentor Uta Hagen starred. Filming for Kate would be very erratic during the course of her career. She played Natalie Wood's mother in This Property Is Condemned (1966) and is probably best remembered as a scientist in the thriller The Andromeda Strain (1971). She earned two Tony nominations in the 60s for her participation in the plays "Dylan" and "Slapstick Tragedy." Further respect came in the package of Arthur Miller's "The Price" and John Guare's "Bosoms and Neglect." Plagued by ill health in later years Kate nevertheless offered a couple of outstanding contributions. She was the invalid mistress in the film Atlantic City (1980) opposite Burt Lancaster, and portrayed the devoted, long-suffering wife Linda Loman alongside Dustin Hoffman in the critically-acclaimed 1984 remake of "Death of a Salesman" on Broadway. She and Hoffman subsequently preserved their roles with a TV adaptation the following year. Kate also managed a recurring part on "Dallas" (1978) as well as regular roles on the short-lived "Gavilan" (1982) and "Morningstar/Eveningstar" (1986) TV series. She succumbed to brain cancer at age 62 in Ontario, Canada.