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Welcome to the official website of Judith Light

FEATURES

Judith Light promises ‘Transparent’s’ Shelly is finding her true voice

 
 

Most recently, Light’s been playing Shelly Pfefferman on Jill Soloway’s series “Transparent,” a role that has nabbed her a supporting actress Emmy nomination for a second year in a row. Shelly finally began to blossom after several seasons of lurking in the shadow of her transitioning ex-husband Maura’s journey of self-discovery.

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Judith Light reflects on her long, varied career

http://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/on-stage/2017/07/21/judith-light-interview-career-broadway-tv-early-life.html

Emmy spotlight: Judith Light triumphs as Shelly Pfefferman in ‘Transparent’ Season 3

By Tony Ruiz

judith light transparent

The third season of Amazon’s groundbreaking series “Transparent” was released back in September of 2016. And while Jill Soloway’s dramedy continued to showcase one of television’s finest ensembles — led by two-time Emmy-winner Jeffrey Tambor — this season belonged to Judith Light, whose performance as Shelly Pfefferman deserves serious awards consideration and could bring the actress her first Primetime Emmy.

The stage and screen veteran has already amassed an impressive list of awards and nominations. She earned two Daytime Emmys for Best Actress for her role as housewife-turned-prostitute Karen Wolek on ABC’s “One Life to Live.” An accomplished stage actress, Light’s work has earned her three consecutive Tony nominations for Featured Play Actress, winning in 2012 for “Other Desert Cities” and in 2013 for “The Assembled Parties.” She has yet to win at the Primetime Emmys despite nominations for Comedy Guest Actress for “Ugly Betty” (2007) and Comedy Supporting Actress for “Transparent” (2016) Read more

Shelly Pfefferman Is the “Fragile, Tender” Guide Judith Light Needed

The Transparent star on her character’s Season 3 journey—and why it’s just the beginning.
 

As Emmy nominations approach, Vanity Fair’s HWD team is diving deep into how some of this season’s greatest scenes and characters came together. 

The Character: Shelly Pfefferman, Transparent

The lights dim and a projector rises as the final scene of Transparent Season 3 opens on Judith Light. In Shelly Pfefferman’s signature silver bob, she wears a long black dress and a shimmering black-and-gold jacket as she steps into the spotlight of a cruise-ship stage to perform her one-woman show, the aptly titled To Shell and Back. “When I was a young girl, something happened to me that made me stop being who I really was; I stopped growing . . . Who am I? I didn’t know, and I didn’t want to know. I was in a cocoon,” she says. She takes a measured breath, looks to the audience—including her family—and launches into Alanis Morissette’s 1995 hit “Hand in My

 

The song, famous for its litany of conflicting emotions, acts in this moment as Shelly’s personal theme. Three seasons into her journey as the ex-spouse of Jeffrey Tambor’s Maura—a transgender woman who came out in the series’s first season—and mother of three adult children on their own equally convoluted journeys, Shelly is finally getting a moment of her own. Read more

Judith Light (‘Transparent’) reveals desire for LGBT advocacy signed her to the show without even seeing a script [EXCLUSIVE VIDEO]

Judith Light (‘Transparent’) reveals desire for LGBT advocacy signed her to the show without even seeing a script [EXCLUSIVE VIDEO]

Judith Light On Shelly’s Season 3 Breakthrough in ‘Transparent’

June 8, 2017
By: Joey Moser
Judith Light
Judith Light talks about Shelly’s emotional breakthrough on Transparent Season 3 and her working relationship with old friend Jeffrey Tambor.

Judith Light is a force to be reckoned with. When I revisited the third season of the critically acclaimed Amazon smash Transparent, I had forgotten what a breakthrough Shelly Pfefferman has in the very last episode. Shelly has always been a big ball of energy throughout the course of the show, but this year we start to learn about an incident that traumatized her as a young girl. Light won several Daytime Emmy® Awards for her work on One Life to Live, but she deserves to take home her first Primetime Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series in Transparent.

You don’t watch Transparent. You feel Transparent.
Throughout the course of the third season, Shelly goes through several life changes. She must take a realistic look at her relationship with live-in boyfriend Buzzy, and she excitedly begins building herself as a social media brand. As she takes her one-woman show to a more serious level, we learn in flashbacks that she was assaulted by a teacher in elementary school. It’s a very unexpected turn that calls back to a certain moment in Season 1 that Light can easily recall, and it was very freeing to explore that history of the character.

Judith Light gives a performance that pulls back the layers so carefully and earnestly that it might make you look at your own mother in a different way.

Was it freeing to have Shelly break out in this last season?

It was in a lot of ways and on a lot of levels. It’s funny because people tend to not remember that in the first season there is a discussion about music and Shelly turns to the kids and says, ‘I don’t care for music.’ Just like that. If you go back to Season 1, you’ll find it somewhere in there. I always thought how interesting. How fascinating. What is that about? Two seasons later, we come to find out what has been going on. In a lot of ways it was very freeing.

You have to understand when you work with the people that I have the blessing and the good fortune to work with it’s thrilling. It’s an incredible writer’s room. These are an incredibly funny, smart, deep substance of people. It’s not only freeing to have done that, sing ‘Hand in My Pocket,’ but what’s also freeing is to work in the way that we work. There’s a kind of freedom in the experience that is unlike any other experience that I’ve ever had before in television or even in a play for that matter.

There is an experience of working in a system where everyone is valued for their talent, and I mean everybody. I’m not just talking about the actors and the writers. That makes you very free to create, and that’s very unusual. Read more

Judith Light Honored with O’Neill Center’s 2017 Monte Cristo Award

by BWW News Desk May. 22, 2017  

It was a night full of Broadway and TV reunions for beloved stage and screen star Judith Light at the 2017 Monte Cristo Award ceremony last night, presented by the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center and held for the first time at 583 Park Avenue. Light’s LOMBARDI co-star Dan Lauria and “Ugly Betty” co-star Michael Urie joined in on the celebrations, and Director Thomas Kail presented Light with her honor. Scroll down for photos from the evening!

An alum of the O’Neill, Judith first performed at the O’Neill’s 1977 National Playwrights Conference. The Monte Cristo Award is presented to a prominent theater artist each year in recognition of a distinguished career exemplifying Eugene O’Neill’s “pioneering spirit, unceasing artistic commitment, and excellence.”

Past recipients of the Award include Meryl Streep, Christopher Plummer, Michael Douglas, James Earl Jones, Nathan Lane, Harold Prince, Kevin Spacey, Neil Simon, Jason Robards, Jr., Edward Albee, August Wilson, Zoe Caldwell, George C. Wolfe, Brian Dennehy, Karl Malden, Arthur & Barbara Gelb, and Wendy Wasserstein.

Additional guests included Shakina Nayfack, Lena Hall, Tom Kitt, Margo Seibert, Tom Viertel, Susan Blackwell and more.

Photo Credit: Jenny Anderson/Getty Images for the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center

Photo Flash: Judith Light Honored with O'Neill Center's 2017 Monte Cristo Award
Honoree Judith Light

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Judith Light, Billy Porter return to Pittsburgh to accept Carnegie Mellon alumni awards

 

Judith Light and Billy Porter pose for a photo at the Carnegie Mellon University Alumni Awards on May 19, 2017 at the Purnell Center for the Arts at Carnegie Mellon University in Oakland. Light was awarded with the Alumni Lifetime Achievement Award and Porter was awarded an Alumni Achievement Award.

 
 
 
Judith Light (Class of 1970) and Billy Porter (‘91) were back on campus Friday as honorees for the 67th annual Carnegie Mellon University Alumni Awards, given for career achievements and service to the university.

Ms. Light, 68, the Emmy-winning actress known for TV roles from the daytime soap “One Life to Live,” to primetime’s “Who’s the Boss?” and “Ugly Betty,” and more recently, the Amazon series “Transparent,” has a long theater career as well. She took best actress in a play Tonys in 2012 and ‘13 for “The Assembled Parties” and “Other Desert Cities.”

This weekend she also will receive the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center’s Monte Cristo Award, given to an artist whose work has had a major impact on American theater. “Hamilton” director Thomas Kail presented Ms. Light with the award.

At CMU, Ms. Light and Raymond W. Smith (‘59), a pioneer in wireless technology and retired chairman of Verizon, were recognized with Alumni Lifetime Achievement Awards.

Mr. Porter, 47, the Pittsburgh native and Tony- and Grammy Award-winning star of “Kinky Boots,” was a recipient of an Alumni Achievement Award. He was surprised during the awards ceremony with a tribute by Pittsburgh CAPA students -— he attended Pittsburgh Allderdice and CAPA before heading to CMU. 

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A Shining Light

March 31, 2017

By Nicholas Ducassi (CFA 2010)

Judith Light’s distinguished acting career and her active support for the LGBTQ community will take center stage at Carnegie Mellon University this May, when she will be presented with the Alumni Association’s most illustrious honor, the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Light’s career has spanned five decades and garnered multiple awards, including Tonys and Daytime Emmys. A 1970 graduate of the School of Drama in CMU’s College of Fine Arts, she stars in Amazon’s groundbreaking and Emmy-award winning television comedy “Transparent,” a role for which she has been nominated for a Primetime Emmy and a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress.

“I’ve been doing this a long time, and I owe a lot of that to my training at Carnegie Mellon — to be flexible, powerful and resilient — and to use our instrument in all different ways for all different avenues of the business,” Light said.

“WHAT I HAD HOPED AND LONGED FOR CAME TO FRUITION FROM MY CARNEGIE MELLON TRAINING — FOR THE SCHOOL TO HONOR ME WITH THIS KIND OF RECOGNITION IS TRULY BEYOND MY WILDEST DREAMS.”

Judith Light

Judith Light to Receive O’Neill Theater Center’s Monte Cristo Award

By Gordon Cox
Legit Editor@GCoxVariety
MARCH 16, 2017 | 07:00AM PT

The Eugene O’Neill Theater Center has named actress Judith Light the recipient of its annual Monte Cristo Award, handed out each year to a theater creative whose work has had a major impact on American theater.

“Hamilton” director Thomas Kail will present Light with the award at a May gala. Although Light is most widely known for TV roles in “Transparent” and “Who’s the Boss?,” she’s also won two Tony Awards, one for “Other Desert Cities” in 2012 and one for “The Assembled Parties” in 2013. In 1977 she spent a summer at the O’Neill Center’s National Playwrights Conference, performing in new works that included Wendy Wasserstein’s “Uncommon Women and Others.”

The actress, whose TV credits also include “One Life to Live” and “Ugly Betty,” joins a list of Monte Cristo recipients alongside prior winners Meryl Streep, Michael Douglas, Nathan Lane and George C. Wolfe, among others. Kail previously worked with Light in the 2010 Broadway play “Lombardi”; at the O’Neill Center’s Music Theater Conference he collaborated on “In the Heights” with Lin-Manuel Miranda before that show moved to Broadway.

The O’Neill Theater Center, located in Waterford, Conn., oversees a range of new-work initiatives that include the conferences for playwrights and for music theater, as well as the National Puppetry Conference and the Cabaret and Performance Conference. The O’Neill also runs undergraduate training programs through its National Theater Institute.

The 2017 Monte Cristo Award gala is set for May 21 at New York event venue 583 Park Avenue.

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