Broadway’s favorite kewpie doll, Bernadette Peters has a claim to being the musical theater star of her generation. A two-time Tony winner and seven-time nominee, she is one of Stephen Sondheim’s signal interpreters, having originated roles in “Sunday in the Park with George” and “Into the Woods” and having scaled the mountain known as Rose in a revival of “Gypsy.”
Hardcore stage aficionados would consider it remiss not to mention that Peters created the character of Mabel in Michael Stewart and Jerry Herman’s “Mack & Mabel” and did a bang-up job as the gun-toting lass in a revival of Irving Berlin’s “Annie Get Your Gun.”
An acclaimed concert performer with a cult following, she has also written a children’s book, "Broadway Barks," a touching story about a dog in need of a home, which comes with a CD of a lullaby she wrote. Peters donated her royalties for the book — named after the annual event she started with her close friend Mary Tyler Moore to help shelter animals — to the charity organization.
Peters came into wider renown in the 1970s through guest spots on “All in the Family” and “Maude,” and she eventually had her own series, “All's Fair,” a short-lived sitcom in which she starred with Richard Crenna.
Of her TV work, Peters acknowledges a special place in her heart for "The Carol Burnett Show." "I wasn't a regular, but Carol would invite me on. She had come to see me in 'Dames at Sea,' and that was the beginning of her doing the takeoffs on movies."
Two of Peters' biggest cinematic splashes were with her old flame Steve Martin: "The Jerk" (1979) and "Pennies From Heaven" (1981). Big back-to-back Hollywood breaks, however, haven't been the norm, which is just fine with her legion of theater fans, who hope she’ll always remain a Broadway baby.