Quick! Who is the closest thing to a celebrity produced by my alma mater, Desert High School ("The Fighting Scorpions")?
If you attended the school between 1977-1982 you are likely to know the answer to this question. If you don't know the answer, then pay attention: I'd like to introduce you to Cynthia Ettinger.

She's prolific, as her IMDB entry shows. Her most recent major splash was a regular character on HBO's spooky 'Carnivale' series. Less well-known is the critical acclaim she has received for her work on the stage as a member of the legendary 'Actor's Gang' troupe founded in 1981 by a then-unknown Tim Robbins and colleagues from the UCLA Theatre Department. She won rave reviews for her performance as serial killer Jolene Palmer in the Carson Kreitzer play 'Self Defense'. I could go on and on, really.

Yet, for all that, the greatest number of links you'll find to Cyndy's work on the Internet is the fact that she played the role of Martha Kent on the pilot for "Smallville", only to be replaced at the last moment by a name actress, Annette O'Toole. Such is the power, I suppose, of geekdom and sci-fi conventions. Here's hoping that at some point someone will realize that my old high school sparring partner (we battled our way through various theatrical productions) will be recognized for what she is: a singularly gifted artist of the first rank.


Anonymous said...

Don't forget her small but memorable bit part as the female cop in Silence of the Lambs.

I enjoyed having her sing to me during our run of Oliver.

Wot say you, Doctor?

Scott Hatfield . . . . said...

Hello, Kevin. It's nice to see you here. For some reason, a graphic associated with your post is not showing.

As you may be aware, I'm in the Fresno area, working as a teacher. Are you still working in California, and if so, with which unit?

Bethany Price said...

Scott - amazing to find you. I saw a dinner theatre production of "My Fair Lady" on Friday, and was telling my daughter, Cynthia (a budding young performer) about the high school production I had been in as a Freshman at Desert HS. I thought about Desert for the first time in a very long time, and was wondering about you and Jamie and Chuck, etc - even Steve Sutton.

Then I was "friended" by Kevin Beall on Facebook this morning, and Chuck popped up as one of Kevin's friends. So then I had to try to find you. Thanks for blogging.

I'm in Long Beach, working in the Dean's Office at the CSULB College of the Arts. Seems a bunch of us have ended up in higher education, though I've gone the admin/staff route.

As for the My Fair Lady I saw with my kids - the production couldn't hold a candle to ours. Good times.

Bethany (Dane) Price