Armstrong in On Our Own (1977).
|Born||Elizabeth Key Armstrong
December 11, 1953
Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.
|Spouse(s)||John Fiedler (1985-present) 3 children
Chris Carreras (1983-1984) (divorced)
Life and career
Armstrong was born in Baltimore, Maryland, the daughter of Louise Allen (née Parlange), who taught at Bryn Mawr, and Alexander Armstrong, an English teacher at the Gilman School. She attended the Bryn Mawr School for Girls and Brown University, from which she graduated with degrees in Latin and Theater (studying acting with Jim Barnhill and John Emigh). While at Bryn Mawr and Brown, Armstrong appeared in over one hundred stage plays.
Armstrong's professional acting career began in 1975 with the Off-Off Broadway debut, Harmony House. Then, in 1977, Armstrong made her television debut as Julia Peters on the CBS sitcom, On Our Own. In 1978 Armstrong starred opposite Richard Thomas in her first TV-movie Getting Married. She co-starred again with Richard Thomas in a 1981 stage production in Seattle of Neil Simon's Barefoot in the Park, from which a video was made for HBO broadcast that year.
Armstrong continued to make several films for both the big and small screens in the 1980s, among them High Road to China opposite Tom Selleck; Jaws 3-D with Dennis Quaid; Alan Alda's The Four Seasons; the TV miniseries Lace; and Nothing in Common, starring Tom Hanks and Jackie Gleason.
The 1990s brought Armstrong to her best-known role, playing Patty Chase on the critically acclaimed series My So-Called Life. In 2000, she appeared on the sitcom Frasier, in the episode "Mary Christmas." In 2008, Armstrong played Penelope Kendall on Boston Legal.
Armstrong remains active in films, television, and the stage.
- On Our Own (1977) (TV)
- Getting Married (1978) (TV)
- 11th Victim (1979) (TV)
- Walking Through the Fire (1979) (TV)
- The Four Seasons (1981)
- Barefoot in the Park (1981)
- Jekyll and Hyde... Together Again (1982)
- High Road to China (1983)
- Jaws 3-D (1983)
- The House of God (1984)
- Lace (1984) (TV)
- All Is Forgiven (1986) (TV)
- Nothing in Common (1986)
- Married People (1990-1991)
- The Nanny (1994 & 1998) (TV)
- Dream Lover (1994)
- My So-Called Life (1994) (TV)
- The Tailhook Scandal (1995) (TV)
- Danielle Steel's Mixed Blessings (1995) (TV)
- Christmas Every Day (1996)
- Forgotten Sins (19960 (TV)
- That Darn Cat (1997)
- Pecker (1998)
- Forever Love (1998)
- Diamond Men (2000)
- Frasier (2000, 2004) (TV)
- Good Morning, Miami (2002) (TV)
- That Was Then (2002) (TV)
- One Tree Hill (2004, 2010) (TV)
- Boston Legal (2008) (TV)
- Criminal Minds (2009) (TV)
- The Bounty Hunter (2010)
- Mad Men (2012) (TV) Season 5 Episode 6
- House of Lies (2013) (TV) Season 2