Julie Bovasso

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Bavasso in 1956

Julie Bovasso (August 1, 1930 – September 14, 1991) was an American actress of stage, screen and television. She was born in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, New York to an Italian-American and Armenian-American family.

Career[edit]

Bovasso appeared in many films, including Saturday Night Fever and Moonstruck, in which she played Italian-American matrons. She also appeared in a supporting role in Sidney Lumet's film The Verdict.

However, off-Broadway she wrote and appeared in avant-garde material, such as Jean Genet's The Maids, for which she won the very first Best Actress Obie (Off-Broadway) Award in 1956, which was presented to her by Shelley Winters.

In the mid-1950s, Bovasso established the experimental Tempo Playhouse on 8th Street/St. Marks Place in Manhattan and introduced works of the Theater of the Absurd, including those of the playwrights Jean Genet, Eugene Ionesco and Michel de Ghelderode, to the professional theater in the United States.[1]

Bovasso also performed with The Living Theater and had a longstanding relationship with La Mama Experimental Theatre Club.[2]

In addition to her work as a director and actor, her playwriting credits include the four-hour extravaganza Gloria and Esperanza, which Village Voice theatre critic Jerry Tallmer described as "a miracle, a mythopoetic fireworks display."[3] A sought-after acting coach, Bovasso was known as an exacting instructor and her private New York workshops regularly included prominent performers. As per the DVD commentary, Bovasso coached both Cher and Olympia Dukakis on their Brooklyn accents in the movie "Moonstruck".

In her earlier acting days, she played Rose Corelli Fraser in the short-lived soap opera, From These Roots. She was subsequently fired from that show, due to a disagreement with producers.

Personal life[edit]

Bovasso was briefly married to painter George Earl Ortman.[4]

Selected Works[edit]

Death[edit]

She died of cancer in New York City, aged 61.

Notes[edit]

External links[edit]