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Laila Robins
Born March 14, 1959
St. Paul, Minnesota
Years active 1987–2009
Spouse(s) Robert Cuccioli (? - ?)

Laila Robins (born March 14, 1959) is an American stage, film and television actress.




Personal life

Robins was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, the daughter of Latvian-American parents[1] Brigita (née Svarcs) and Janis Robins, who was a research chemist.[2] She attended the Yale School of Drama,(MFA) and received her undergraduate degree at the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire, (BA). Robins has been in a relationship with the actor Robert Cuccioli since 2000. They co-starred in Macbeth at the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey; he was Macbeth, and she was Lady Macbeth.

Robins has a sister, Daina, who resides in Holland, Michigan. Daina is the Department Chair of Theatre at Hope College. Daina has directed many productions at Hope College, including her most recent work, Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare.


Robins recently appeared as Lady Utterword in the Roundabout Theatre Company's revival of George Bernard Shaw's Heartbreak House (2006). Robins' other Broadway appearances were Frozen by Bryony Lavery (2004), The Herbal Bed by Peter Whelan (1998), and The Real Thing by Tom Stoppard (1985), directed by Mike Nichols. (Robins succeeded actress Glenn Close in the role).

Robins has appeared off-Broadway in Sore Throats by Howard Brenton, The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare, Mrs. Klein by Nicholas Wright (in which she also toured with Uta Hagen) (1995-1996), Burnt Piano by Justin Fleming and The Film Society by Jon Robin Baitz, among others.

In 1997 she starred in the Fiftieth Anniversary production of A Streetcar Named Desire at the Steppenwolf Theater in Chicago. Robin also appeared as Cleopatra in Antony and Cleopatra at the Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis in 2002. In 2000, she was cast opposite Richard Thomas in the stage revival of Tiny Alice. Robins is also a frequent performer at the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, where she has starred in Macbeth, Three Sisters and The Cherry Orchard.

Charles Isherwood, critic for the New York Times, assessed her stage work as Ariadne in George Bernard Shaw's Heartbreak House (2006). Robins played opposite Swoosie Kurtz, and both were described as such: "...this expert comic actress [Kurtz] may not fit the textbook definition of siren, as Hesione is called, but she may just be the most seductive woman on a New York stage right now...unless that nod goes to Ms. Robins, who locates the essence of her character's shallow allure in a languid, liquid strut and a smile both entrancing and devouring".[3]

Film and television

Robins has had numerous film and television roles. In 2006, she played Nora Paxton in The Book of Daniel; she played Victoria Heller in Gabriel's Fire in 1990 on ABC; appeared in the television movie Dream Breakers in 1989; and in The Equalizer in 1988.

On the 90s television series The Sopranos, she portrayed the younger version of manipulative, conniving, abusive family matriarch Livia Soprano.

In 1987, she played Steve Martin's wife in the movie Planes, Trains & Automobiles directed by the late John Hughes.

In 2006, she played Toddy Allen in The Good Shepherd, directed by Robert De Niro. She made her film debut in the 1987 picture, A Walk on the Moon.

In 2009, it was announced that she will be playing Claire Williams, the mother of lesbian Reese Williams on the daytime drama All My Children.

Awards and nominations

Awards and Nominations:

  • 1995: Actors' Equity Foundation Joe A. Callaway Award, The Merchant of Venice ("Best Performance in a Classic Drama", for her work as Portia)
  • 1997: Helen Hayes Award nomination, Mrs. Klein
  • 1997: Jefferson Award, A Streetcar Named Desire and Mrs. Klein
  • 1997: Drama League Award, Skylight
  • 2004: Lucille Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Featured Actress, Frozen.

Stage appearances

  • The Real Thing (1985)...Annie (Replacement); Plymouth Theatre (Broadway)
  • Summer and Smoke (1986)...Alma Winemiller; Williamstown Theatre Festival (Williamstown, MA)
  • Bloody Poetry (1987)...Mary Shelly; Manhattan Theatre Club (Off-Broadway)
  • The Film Society (1988)...Nan Sinclair; Second Stage Theatre/McGinn-Cazale Theatre (Off-Broadway)
  • The Lady from the Sea (1988)...Cast; Baltimore Center Stage (Baltimore, MD)
  • Maids of Honor (1990)...Monica Bowlin; WPA Theatre (Off-Broadway)
  • The Extra Man (1992)...Laura; Manhattan Theatre Club (Off-Broadway)
  • The Women (1993)...Cast; Hartford Stage Company (Hartford, CT)
  • The Merchant of Venice (1995)... Portia; Joseph Papp Public Theater/Anspacher Theatre (Off-Broadway)
  • Mrs. Klein (1996)...Melitta; National Tour
  • Mrs. Klein (1995)... Melitta; Lucille Lortel Theatre (Off-Broadway)
  • Skylight (1997)...Kyra Hollis; Mark Taper Forum (Los Angeles, CA)
  • A Streetcar Named Desire (1997)...Blanche du Bois; Steppenwolf Theatre Company (Chicago, IL)
  • The Herbal Bed (1998)...Susanna Hall; Eugene O'Neill Theatre (Broadway)
  • Fool for Love (1999)...May; McCarter Theatre (Princeton, NJ)
  • Tiny Alice (2000)...Cast; Second Stage Theatre (Off-Broadway)
  • Hedda Gabler (2000)... Hedda Gabler; Guthrie Theatre (Minneapolis, MN)
  • Burnt Piano (2001) ...Karen; HB Playwrights Theatre (Off-Broadway)
  • Three Sisters (2001)...Masha; New Jersey Shakespeare Theatre (Madison, NJ)
  • Antony and Cleopatra (2002)...Cleopatra; Guthrie Theatre (Minneapolis, MN)
  • Resurrection Blues (2002)...Emily; Guthrie Theatre (Minneapolis, MN)
  • Fiction (2003)...Linda; McCarter Theatre (Princeton, NJ)
  • King John (2003)... Constance; New Jersey Shakespeare Theater (Madison, NJ)
  • Macbeth (2004)...Lady Macbeth; The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey (Madison, NJ)
  • Frozen (2004)...Agnetha; Circle in the Square Theatre (Broadway)
  • Frozen (2004)... Agnetha; MCC Theater (Off-Broadway)
  • Heartbreak House (2006)...Lady Utterwood; American Airlines Theatre (Broadway)[4]
  • A Street Car Named Desire (2008) The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey (Madison, NJ)
  • Noises Off (2009) The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey (Madison, NJ)



External links


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