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Ellen Greene
Photo of Ellen Greene from film Glory! Glory! (1989)
Greene in Glory! Glory! (1989)
Born (1951-02-22) February 22, 1951 (age 70)
OccupationSinger, actress
Years active1973–present
Tibor Hardik
(m. 1990; div. 1997)

Christian Klikovits
(m. 2003; div. 2007)

Ellen Greene (born February 22, 1951) is an American singer and actress. Greene has had a long and varied career as a singer, particularly in cabaret, as an actress and singer in numerous stage productions,[1] particularly musical theatre, as well as having performed in many films—notably Little Shop of Horrors, and television series. From 2007 to 2009, she starred as Vivian Charles on the ABC series Pushing Daisies.

Personal life

Greene was born in Brooklyn, New York. Her mother was a guidance counselor, and her father was a dentist.[2] Greene is Jewish.[3] She attended W. Tresper Clarke High School in Westbury, New York. She spent summers at Cejwin Camps in Port Jervis, New York, where she performed in musical theatre productions, including the role of Tzeitel in a 1966 production of Fiddler on the Roof. She had a relationship with puppeteer Martin P. Robinson.[4][5] Her first marriage was to Tibor Hardik. She married Christian Klikovits on September 25, 2003; they have since divorced.[6]


Greene's career began as a nightclub singer in clubs such as The Brothers and Sisters, Continental Baths, Grand Finale, and Reno Sweeney's. She received rave reviews from critics such as Rex Reed, George Bell, and John S. Wilson. Around this time, she befriended the late Peter Allen. Her first starring role on Broadway was as the lead in the unsuccessful Broadway show Rachael Lily Rosenbloom (And Don't You Ever Forget It), which had 7 previews in 1973 but closed before officially opening.[7] She then played the starring role of Chrissy in Joseph Papp's production of In the Boom Boom Room at the Off-Broadway Public Theatre in November to December 1974.[8] Her reviews brought her to the attention of Paul Mazursky, who was at that time casting Next Stop, Greenwich Village (1976).[9] She was cast in the role of Sarah, her first starring role in a film.[10]

Continuing her work with Papp's New York Shakespeare Festival, Greene next played the role of Jenny in The Three Penny Opera (1976) at the Vivian Beaumont Theater in Lincoln Center, for which she was nominated for a 1977 Tony Award, Featured Actress In A Musical.[11]

In addition to a number of other productions with the New York Shakespeare Festival and numerous other companies, Greene formed a close working relationship with the WPA Theatre, where she met Howard Ashman and Alan Menken. Their close, long-lasting friendship led to, among other productions, the role for which she is perhaps most-widely known, that of the hapless Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors (1982),[12] a role she reprised in the film version opposite Rick Moranis.

Greene has worked extensively in theater, such as the part of Suzanne/The Little Rose in The Little Prince and the Aviator (1981).[13][14]

She has worked in films such as I'm Dancing as Fast as I Can (1982),[15] Léon, Talk Radio (1987),[16] and Pump Up the Volume (1990).[17]

She has appeared on television in, among other programs, Miami Vice, The Adventures of Pete and Pete, Cybill, Law & Order, Suddenly Susan, The X-Files, and Heroes. In 1983 she was the voice of Creeping Ivy in the animated TV special The Magic of Herself the Elf.

Greene released an album in 2004 entitled In His Eyes, on which she was accompanied by her husband and musical director, Christian Klikovits. Other work includes the role of Vivian Charles on the television series Pushing Daisies (2007)[18] and the voice of Dolly Gopher in the animated Out of Jimmy's Head. Greene was the voice of the Priscilla Presley type of character Goldie in the Don Bluth film Rock-a-Doodle (1991).[19]

In July and August 2009, Greene starred as Miss Adelaide in a concert version of the musical Guys and Dolls, which had a 3-day engagement at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, California. Her co-stars included Scott Bakula as Nathan Detroit, Brian Stokes Mitchell as Sky Masterson, and Jessica Biel as Sarah Brown.[20] In 2011, she appeared in five episodes on the soap opera The Young and the Restless as Primrose DeVille.[21]

Greene performed in the musical Betwixt! at the Trafalgar Studios in London's West End from July 26 to August 20, 2011.[22]

She appeared in two episodes of the new ABC Family show Bunheads (2012), alongside Sutton Foster and Kelly Bishop.[23] She portrayed Doctor Gale Macones in The Walking Dead Webisodes: The Oath.[24]

In 2015, she reprised her signature role as Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors in the staged concert at the New York City Center as part of their Encores! Off-Center Series.[25]

Greene performed in the 2016 Democratic National Convention's "Fight Song" video.[26]


Greene (left) with fellow Pushing Daisies star Swoosie Kurtz
Greene (left) with fellow Pushing Daisies star Swoosie Kurtz


Year Title Role Notes
1976 Next Stop, Greenwich Village Sarah Roth
1982 I'm Dancing as Fast as I Can Karen Mulligan
1986 Little Shop of Horrors Audrey
1988 Me and Him Annette Uttanzi
Talk Radio Ellen
1990 Pump Up the Volume Jan Emerson
1991 Rock-a-Doodle Goldie (voice)
Stepping Out Maxine
1992 Fathers & Sons Judy
1994 Naked Gun 33⅓: The Final Insult Louise
Wagons East Belle
Léon: The Professional Mathilda's Mother
1995 Killer: A Journal of Murder Elizabeth Wyatt
1996 An Occasional Hell Della
One Fine Day Elaine Lieberman
1997 States of Control Carol
1998 Jaded Louise Smith
2001 Alex in Wonder Clarice
2003 The Cooler Doris
Love Object Typing Supervisor
2010 Privileged Mrs. Rothman Video
2016 Muddy Corman Dawn Denford
2017 Love's Last Resort Ms. Leigh
2019 The Untold Story Lydia


Year Title Role Notes
1977 Seventh Avenue Paula Class TV miniseries
1978 The Rock Rainbow Jess TV film
1983 The Magic of Herself the Elf Creeping Ivy (voice) TV film
1985 Miami Vice Darlene "Made for Each Other"
1987 Morning Maggie Maggie McAllister TV film
1988 Superman 50th Anniversary Ariel Dickenson TV film documentary
1989 Glory! Glory! Ruth TV film
CBS Summer Playhouse Sally Maggio "Road Show"
Dinner at Eight Kitty Packard TV film
1994 The Adventures of Pete & Pete Abilene Jones "Time Tunnel"
1995 Cybill Sharon "How Can I Call You My Ex-Husbands If You Won't Go Away?", "Look Who's Stalking"
Law & Order Karen Gaines "Bitter Fruit"
1997 Dellaventura Elizabeth Brodkin "Above Reproach"
2000 Suddenly Susan Harriet Graham "The Break Up"
2002 The X-Files Vicki Louise Burdick "Improbable"
Crossing Jordan Mrs. Dunham "Secrets & Lies: Part 2"
2005 Mystery Woman: Sing Me a Murder Carly TV film
Fielder's Choice Jill TV film
2006 Re-Animated Dolly Gopher (voice) TV film
2007–08 Out of Jimmy's Head Dolly Gopher (voice) Main role
2007–2009 Pushing Daisies Vivian Charles Main role
Heroes Virginia Grey "The Hard Part", "I Am Sylar", "Tabula Rasa"
2009 Batman: The Brave and the Bold Mrs. Manface (voice) "Night of the Huntress!"
2011 The Young and the Restless Primrose DeVille Recurring role
2012 Pound Puppies Gertrude Washburn (voice) "Olaf in Love"
Bunheads Wiccan Friend "For Fanny", "Movie Truck"
2013 Hannibal Mrs. Komeda "Sorbet"
The Walking Dead: The Oath Gale "Bond", "Choice"
2017 Tangled: The Series Mrs. Sugarby (voice) "Painter's Block"


Sources: Internet Off-Broadway Database;[27] Playbill Vault[28]

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Nominated Work Result
1977 Tony Award Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Musical[35] The Threepenny Opera Nominated
1983 Drama Desk Award Outstanding Actress in a Musical[36] Little Shop of Horrors Nominated
Laurence Olivier Award Best Actress in a Musical[37] Nominated


  1. ^ Ellen Greene at the Internet Broadway Database
  2. ^ "Ellen Greene Biography". FilmReference. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  3. ^ "Gay Mens Chorus - Ellen Greene - Gay Holiday News". Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  4. ^ Ellen Greene biography,; accessed June 11, 2017.
  5. ^ Staff. "Puppeteer Martin Robinson Finds His Work Life Blooming in the Maw of a Man-Munching Plant" People, September 12, 1983
  6. ^ "Ever Greene". Metro Weekly. Archived from the original on April 15, 2014. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  7. ^ [1] Internet Broadway Database, retrieved November 24, 2017
  8. ^ In the Boom Boom Room, retrieved November 24, 2017
  9. ^ Gans, Andrew. "In Her Own Words: Little Shop's Ellen Greene Remembers Her Friend and Mentor, Filmmaker Paul Mazursky" Playbill, July 21, 2014
  10. ^ 8 Next Stop, Greenwich Village, retrieved November 24, 2017
  11. ^ The Three Penny Opera Playbill (vault), retrieved November 24, 2017
  12. ^ Little Shop of Horrors, retrieved November 24, 2017
  13. ^ The Little Prince and the Aviator Playbill, retrieved November 24, 2017
  14. ^ The Little Prince and the Aviator, retrieved November 24, 2017
  15. ^ "I'm Dancing as Fast as I Can", retrieved November 24, 2017
  16. ^ Talk Radio", retrieved November 24, 2017
  17. ^ "Pump Up the Volume", retrieved November 24, 2017
  18. ^ Gans, Andrew. "DIVA TALK: Chatting with 'Pushing Daisies' Star Ellen Greene Plus Clark's 'Fifteen Seconds of Grace' " Playbill, November 16, 2007
  19. ^ Rock-a-Doodle, retrieved November 24, 2017
  20. ^ a b Gans, Andrew. " 'Luck Be a Lady': 'Guys and Dolls' in Concert Plays the Hollywood Bowl July 31-Aug. 2" Playbill, July 31, 2009
  21. ^ "Ellen Greene Soaps Up for a Gig on The Young and the Restless". January 4, 2011. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  22. ^ a b Shenton, Mark. "Ellen Greene Is 'Betwixt!' in New London Musical, Opening July 28" Playbill, July 28, 2011
  23. ^ Champion, Lindsay. "Barre Hopping: Sutton Foster Copes With Devastating News on 'Bunheads' ", June 19, 2012
  24. ^ "Watch "The Walking Dead" Season 4 Webisodes Online NowAll That's Epic - Epic Cosplay, Gaming, Comic-Con, Movies, Anime and More". All That's Epic - Epic Cosplay, Gaming, Comic-Con, Movies, Anime and More. October 1, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  25. ^ Schulman, Michael. "Eternally Audrey", The New Yorker, July 6, 2015
  26. ^ McDermott, Maeve (July 27, 2016). "Hillary Clinton's celeb supporters unite for 'Fight Song' DNC video". USA Today. Retrieved August 9, 2016.
  27. ^ "Greene Off-Broadway", retrieved November 24, 2017
  28. ^ "Greene Broadway" Playbill (vault), retrieved November 24, 2017
  29. ^ Rachael Lily Rosenbloom (And Don't You Ever Forget It) Playbill (vault), retrieved November 2017
  30. ^ Gussow, Mel. "Stage: 'Teeth ‘n’ Smiles', World of Rock ‘n’ Roll" The New York Times, August 14, 1979
  31. ^ Green, Kay (ed.) "'They're Playing Our Song'" Broadway Musicals, Show by Show, Hal Leonard Corporation, 1996, ISBN 0793577500, p.252
  32. ^ McGrath, Sean. "Ellen Greene Picked for Picture Show at San Fran's ACT, May 6-June 6",, April 7, 1999.
  33. ^ Gans, Andrew. "A Broadway Diva Christmas — with Greene, Days, Brier, Pedi and Schaffel — Begins Nov. 23" Playbill, November 23, 2005
  34. ^ Betwixt!, retrieved November 24, 2017
  35. ^ "Search Past Tony Award Winners and Nominees - - The American Theatre Wing's Tony Awards® - Official Website by IBM". Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  36. ^ "Drama Desk". Archived from the original on September 27, 2007. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  37. ^ "Olivier Award, 1983", retrieved November 24, 2017

External links

This page was last edited on 8 April 2021, at 14:13
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