87 (passed away Feb. 8th, 2002)
Dec. 2nd, 1914
Little Falls, New York, USA
Tracey Roberts' Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
With the goal of writing and acting, she studied at the University of Michigan and Cornell University, and then moved to New York to study and perform with the greats of the Actors Studio - Lee Strasberg, Clifford Odets, Stella Adler, Elia Kazan. At the same time, she also married Jerry Adelman, worked as a model for illustrators and began searching for a stage name. She settled on Tracy--sometimes credited as Tracey--Roberts in homage to two actors she admired, Spencer Tracy and Robert Montgomery. The blue-eyed, raven-haired Roberts landed a role in Odets' "Paradise Lost" and performed in several well-known plays, including "The Women," "Hedda Gabler," "The Seagull" and the Broadway and Los Angeles premieres of "Orpheus Descending." In Los Angeles, she also performed in such plays as "Winter Kill" with Robert Alda. Motion pictures followed, and she appeared in several from Westerns to comedies during the 1950s, including an uncredited role as the "redhead" in Dean Martin (I)'s 1956 Hollywood or Bust (1956) and her personal favorite, the 1952 _Actors and Sin (1952)_ with Eddie Albert. But brains, beauty and talent were never enough to make her a star. She quickly established herself as a respected acting coach and director and producer of plays featuring her students. In 1986, after a quarter-century or so in the profession, she told The Los Angeles Times she had indeed gone into teaching "kicking and screaming" but had since "fallen in love" with the job. Roberts taught camera classes, audition and production workshops, speech, movement, musical comedy and script analysis classes, but all with the same focus, she said. Known for her independence and intelligence, Roberts was perhaps best described by her friend Anais Nin who dedicated one of her books: "For T--Who is all the women I ever wrote about and not according to men's patterns." Beautiful, red headed, intelligent and witty, Tracy Roberts (Born Blanche Elanore Goldstone in Little Falls, New York), studied at the University of Michigan and Cornell University, then moved to New York. Immediately, Tracy landed a highly sought after role on Broadway in Clifford Odets' "Paradise Lost" (with Stella Adler playing her mother), directed by Elia Kazan. She electrified audiences and went on in many other well-known plays including "The Women," "Hedda Gabler," "The Seagull" and the L.A. premiere of "Orpheus Descending." In Los Angeles, she also performed in such plays as "Winter Kill" with Robert Alda.
Tracy studied and worked professionally with the greats of the Actors Studio - Lee Strasberg, Harold Clurman, Clifford Odets, Stella Adler and Elia Kazan. Tracy became one of the few select, hand picked students of the great acting coach, Michael Chekov. Motion pictures followed, and Tracy starred in many dramas, comedies and westerns, including the highly acclaimed 1952 classic, "Actors and Sin" with Eddie Albert. Tracy guest-starred in scores of Television shows in the 1950s, 60s and 70s.
Tracy was responsible for setting up the west coast home of the famed Actors Studio. But, because of her differences with acting guru, Lee Strasberg, Tracy never officially joined the group and went on to open her own school. Tracy quickly established herself as on of the world's top acting coaches, while she directed and produced plays. She was able to combine all of the popular acting techniques, including the "method" into a practical approach to the art. Because of her background, Tracy was considered by the industry as the "real thing."
She produced the critically acclaimed play, "The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit" by Ray Bradbury, and the award winning production of "Shadowlands." Tracy also earned awards and acclaim for her direction of productions, including "The Art of Dining," and "An Evening With Clifford Odets" for an American Playwrights series. She also, sponsored and produced many acting scholarship events such as "The Henry Fonda Awards." Years earlier, Tracy had produced the first play that her sister Emmy Award winner, Ann Marcus, wrote, "A Woman's Place," at the Desilu Playhouse (1960), which led to Marcus's long and prestigious career as a television writer and producer. Tracy later directed television episodes of Marcus's TV series, "Life And Times Of Eddie Roberts" (1980).
Tracy's tradition of helping and/or nourishing others affected scores of actors/actresses, budding young directors (like Academy Award winner, Jonathan Demme), artistic directors of top theater production and repertory companies and the top acting teachers in L.A. and NY, who all started at Tracy's school.
Always looking thirty years younger and known for her independence, intelligence and vitality, Tracy's noted potent romance with the handsome, gifted and much younger writer-actor-director, Nat Christian (who also consulted her on her theaters), was vibrant and lively, but never seemed to raise eyebrows, for age or time just didn't seem to matter. She was perhaps best described by her friend Anais Nin who dedicated one of her books: "For Tracy - Who is all the women I ever wrote about and not according to men's patterns."
As an actress, director and teacher, Tracy's life in the movies, stage and radio, and the people involved, whom she profoundly affected, spanned through most of the twentieth century. She is remembered by many for saying: "The current theatrical climate tends to produce a "fast food" approach to acting. We must remember that we are artists in the original and true sense of the word, and that there is no short cut to achievement. The actor has a responsibility not only to fully realize the character which the writer has created, but also to inspire a wide range of human emotions, and to illuminate the social and political issues of the specific dramatic work. This takes time, dedication, and hard work."
Tracy Roberts passed away in February of 2002. Christian was with her in her final years. She has a sister, Ann Marcus and a brother, writer, Raymond Goldstone.
- Older sister of writers 'Ann Marcus (I)' (qv) and 'Raymond Goldstone'.
- Roberts is survived by her sister and brother.
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