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Rita Moreno

Rita Moreno is one of a select group of performers to have won all four of the most prestigious show business awards: an Oscar, Emmy, Tony and Grammy. She won an Academy Award and a Golden Globe Award for her portrayal of Anita in West Side Story. She is a three-time Golden Globe nominee, a BAFTA Award nominee and six-time Emmy Award nominee and two-time winner (for The Muppet Show in 1977 and The Rockford Files in 1978). She received a Grammy Award in 1972 for her performance on The Electric Company album for children based on the long-running television show of the same name. She received a Tony Award in 1975 for Best Featured Actress in a Play for her role on The Ritz. She is a two-time Drama Desk award nominee and also received six ALMA Award nominations and three wins (for Oz in 1998, 1999 and 2002, and a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998). She received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1995.

Moreno has appeared in more than 40 films over her career, including West Side Story, Singin' in the Rain, The King and I, The Night of the Following Day, Marlowe, Popi, Carnal Knowledge, The Ritz, The Four Seasons, I Like It Like That, Angus, Carlo's Wake, Blue Moon, Piñero, Casa de los Babys and April Showers.

She was a featured artist on The Electric Company and starred in the television series 9 to 5, B.L. Stryker, Cosby Mystery Series and Oz. Her other television credits include Ugly Betty, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, George Lopez, American Family, Murphy Brown and The Guardian, both on CBS, and the Showtime film Wharf Rat.

Moreno was born in Humacao, Puerto Rico, and moved to New York at the age of five. She started taking dance lessons a year later and by the age of 13 was making her Broadway debut in Skydrift. Her other theater credits include The Odd Couple, Wally's Café, The Ritz, Gantry, Last of the Red Hot Lovers, The Sign in Sidney Brustein's Window, After Play, Size of the World and a Tony-nominated role in The National Health. She has also appeared on the London stage in She Loves Me and Sunset Boulevard.

In addition to her film, stage, television and concert careers, Moreno fills her spare time lecturing to various organizations and university audiences. She is also involved with a number of civic and charitable organizations. She has served on the National Endowment for the Arts as a commissioner on the President's White House Fellowships and as a member of the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities. At a White House ceremony in 2004, Moreno was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. The medal is the highest honor given to a civilian and ranks second only to The Congressional Medal of Honor as the nation's highest award and is conferred to individuals for a lifetime of meritorious service.

Moreno is married to Leonard Gordon, a retired physician. Their daughter, Fernanda, is an artist and a mother.


Note: This profile was written in or before 2007.
Read earlier biographies on this page.

Rita Moreno Facts

Birth NameRosita Dolores Alverio
OccupationActress
BirthdayDecember 11, 1931 (86)
SignSagittarius
BirthplaceHumacao, Puerto Rico
Height5' 2½" (1m59)  How tall is Rita Moreno compared to you?
Awards1962 Academy Awards: Best Supporting Actress (for West Side Story)
1962 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actress in a Supporting Role - Motion Picture (for West Side Story)

Selected Filmography

Singin' in the Rain
Scooby-Doo! and the Monster of Mexico
West Side Story
The King and I
Where on Earth is Carmen Sandiego?
Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks
Portrait of a Show Girl
The Four Seasons
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