25 May Tyne Daly ~ Broke Through Barriers for Women
Daly began her career on stage in summer stock in New York, and made her Broadway debut in the play That Summer – That Fall in 1967. She is best known for her television role as Detective Mary Beth Lacey in Cagney & Lacey (1982–88), for which she is a four-time Emmy Award winner as Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series. In 1989, she starred in the Broadway revival of Gypsy and won the 1990 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical.
Her other TV roles include Alice Henderson in Christy (1994–95), for which she won an Emmy in 1996 and Maxine Gray in Judging Amy (1999–2005), which won her a sixth Emmy in 2003. Her other Broadway credits include The Seagull (1992), her Tony-nominated role in Rabbit Hole (2006) and her Tony-nominated role in Mothers and Sons (2014). She played Maria Callas, both on Broadway and in London’s West End, in the play Master Class (2011–12). She portrayed Anne Marie Hoag in Marvel Studios‘ Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017).
Daly was born in Madison, Wisconsin, to actor James Daly and actress Mary Hope (née Newell). She is of Irish descent, her ancestors being from Limerick and Kerry. Her younger brother is actor Tim Daly, and she has two sisters, Mary Glynn and Pegeen Michael.
She was raised in Rockland County, New York, where she started her career by performing in summer stock with her family; she earned her Equity Card at age 15. She studied at Brandeis University and the American Musical and Dramatic Academy.
Daly appeared in the CBS police-procedural crime drama Cagney & Lacey as Mary Beth Lacey, the married working mother. She won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series four times, in 1983, 1984, 1985, 1988, and was a nominee in 1986 and 1987. Between co-star Sharon Gless and herself, they won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series six years in a row.
In 1991, Daly guest-starred on her brother Tim’s series Wings, playing a woman who dates Brian Hackett (Steven Weber), brother of Tim’s character Joe. She appeared as social worker Maxine Gray, who was also the mother to the show’s title character on the CBS drama Judging Amy, which ran from 1999 to 2005. Addressing a conference of the National Association of Social Workers in 2000, Daly said she had learned from social workers and social work texts to improve her portrayal of her character, and she added: “I take from you because you are the ones dealing with all the bad institutions of our society: institutionalized poverty, institutionalized racism, institutionalized cynicism.”
Daly appeared in a made-for-TV movie for Lifetime in 2003 titled Undercover Christmas, as Anne Cunningham. She played the role of a traditional mother and peacemaker at Christmas time in a wealthy family of lawyers, who initially disapproves of her FBI agent son’s girlfriend. Among her later television roles, Daly reunited with Cagney & Lacey costar Sharon Gless in a 2010 guest role on the series Burn Notice.
In the fall of 2018, Daly joined the cast of the revival of the Murphy Brown series, playing the character of Phyllis, who runs the bar which Murphy and her coworkers often patronize.
She acted in the last episode of Madam Secretary (2019) and brother Tim Daly was also featured.
In 1988, Daly appeared on the Dolly Parton TV variety show Dolly, and sang (at her request) a duet with Parton. Broadway producer Barry Brown saw the show and, impressed by Daly’s performance, decided to mount a revival of the musical Gypsy with Daly in the lead role of Rose. Cagney & Lacey had finished airing, and Daly agreed, and successfully tried out for the part. In April 1989, the Daly-helmed Gypsy revival began a 14-city U.S. tour; it was then presented on Broadway in November 1989.
This production was the second revival of the show to play Broadway (the first was in 1974 with Angela Lansbury). She won the 1990 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical for her performance in Gypsy. Daly left Gypsy in July 1990, with Linda Lavin playing Rose, and returned in April 1991 through closing in July 1991.
Daly appeared in John and Mary (1969), the biker movie Angel Unchained (1970), the movie adaptation of Play It as It Lays (1972), and The Adulteress. She was cast as Inspector Harry Callahan’s first female partner, Kate Moore, in the 1976 Dirty Harry film The Enforcer. The film was critically panned, though a box office success. Daly’s performance divided critics, with some calling it too “mannered” for film, while others praised the strength she brought to the role[ The concept of a male/female police partnership was later used as the basis for the television show Hunter.
Daly has been identified as a feminist icon in the media, particularly based on her television role in Cagney and Lacey. Her role as Lacey showed a woman detective at a time where the idea was still novel; the show was also novel in presenting Lacey primarily in a work environment, rather than always showing the character at home. She has also been outspoken about maintaining a natural appearance as she ages, and for the run of Judging Amy, Daly’s hair was its naturally gray state and not dyed.
Tyne Daly was married to Georg Stanford Brown from 1966 to 1990. They have three daughters, including actress Kathryne Dora Brown. Net worth estimated at $4 million.