WHENEVER Tyne Daly plays a role that seems an unlikely choice, some of us doubt her. But not for long. The minute she makes her entrance, on stage or screen, it seems as if the part might have been written with her in mind. Tough police detective. Pushy Depression-era stage mother. And now Greek-American opera star past her prime.
CURRENT GIG The revival of "Master Class," which just opened on Broadway. She plays the late-career Maria Callas, whose voice may be gone but whose diva-hood keeps her going.
WHAT THE TIMES THOUGHT "One of the most haunting portraits I've seen of life after stardom." ("Enough About You; Let's Revisit My Glory Days")
BORN AND RAISED Born in Madison, Wisc. Then the family moved to Westchester County, N.Y.
ALMA MATER Brandeis.
BEST KNOWN AS Detective Mary Beth Lacey on the cop series "Cagney & Lacey" (1981-88). She won four of her six Emmy Awards for the role.
BROADWAY DEBUT "That Summer, That Fall" (1967), a Frank D. Gilroy play based on "Phedre." She appeared with Irene Papas and Jon Voight, but it ran only 12 performances.
HER TONY For her freshly imagined Momma Rose in "Gypsy" (1989).
FAMOUS RELATIVE Cute brother, Tim Daly. Star of the series "Private Practice," which also stars Audra McDonald, who won a supporting-actress Tony for the original production of "Master Class."
WHY SHE WAS ALL WRONG TO PLAY MARIA CALLAS "I play blue collar, available, recognizable."
WHY SHE WAS RIGHT TO PLAY MARIA CALLAS "I am a greedy actor in the sense that I like the big bites." (Both quotes from "A Tough Mama Tries to Find Her Inner Diva," David Rooney's New York Times interview with her last month.)
"Master Class," by Terrence McNally, directed by Stephen Wadsworth, Samuel J. Friedman Theater, 261 West 47th Street, (212) 239-6200, telecharge.com. Opening night: July 7, 2011.
WANT MORE THEATERGOSSIP? Scroll to read Cassie the Westie's first column, about Broadway Barks. Then search to read about this year's Tonys highlights and stage stars like Stockard Channing, Bobby Steggert, Sean Hayes, Liza Minnelli, Mark Rylance and Sutton Foster.