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Barbara Barrie (born May 23, 1931) is an American actress and author of children's books.

Personal life

Barrie was born as Barbara Ann Berman in Chicago, Illinoismarker, of Jewish heritage, the daughter of Frances Rose (née Boruszak) and Louis Berman. She was raised in Texasmarker. Barrie is a widow and the mother of two children, Aaron and Jane. Her late husband, Jay Harnick (d. 2007), was the brother of the musical lyricist Sheldon Harnick (Fiddler on the Roof).

She was treated successfully for rectal cancer and wrote a memoir, Second Act: Life After Colostomy and Other Adventures, about the experience.


Barrie has had a lengthy career on stage and in film and television. She received the award for Prix d'interprétation féminine (best actress — tied with Anne Bancroft) at the 1964 Cannes Film Festival for her role in One Potato, Two Potato, a breakthrough film about an interracial marriage and institutionalized American anti-miscegenation. Her other high-profile roles have been as Susan's (Brooke Shields) grandmother on the sitcom Suddenly Susan, and as the wife of the title character (portrayed by Hal Linden) on the comedy-drama Barney Miller. In the mid-2000s, Barrie played a recurring role on the Showtime cable-TV drama series Dead Like Me. She also starred in the 1963 Twilight Zone episode "Miniature", alongside Robert Duvall.

In 1970, Barrie earned a Tony Award nomination for her role in the original Broadwaymarker production of Stephen Sondheim's musical Company, in which she played "Sarah", the weight-watching, karate-practicing married friend of the lead character, "Robert". Barrie is the author of two critically acclaimed novels for young adults: Lone Star (1989) and Adam Zigzag (1995).

A near-encounter with Barrie is the subject of Christine Lavin's song "The Moment Slipped Away."

Barbara Barrie also acted as aunt Margo of the twins (Liz and Jean Sagal) in the TV show “Double Trouble” in the 80’s (1984 to 1985); she also played the part as the blind girl Celia in the episode: “Even Stones Have Eyes” part of the Route US 66 series (Second Season).



  1. Barbara Barrie Biography (1931-)

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