Performer and playwright Charlaine Woodard (b. Albany, NY, 29 December 1953) trained at the Goodman School of Drama in Chicago and first appeared on Broadway as a member of The Tribe in the 1977 revival of Galt MacDermot’s Hair. But it was in the following year that Woodard made her mark as one of the five performers in the long-running Broadway musical revue, Ain’t Misbehavin’: The New Fats Waller Musical (1978). She earned both Tony® and Drama Desk Award nominations for her performance, recreated her role in the television version in 1982, and returned to Broadway in 1988 to sing in the show’s revival.
Among her other award nominations as an actress, Charlaine Woodard received a 1985 Drama Desk Award nomination for her performance in the off-Broadway musical, Hang On to the Good Times, and a 2000 Drama Desk nomination for her role in the stage play, In the Blood.
Her first solo play, Pretty Fire, was produced first at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles, then at the Manhattan Theatre Club, Seattle Repertory Theatre, and La Jolla Playhouse. It received the LA Drama Critics and NAACP awards for Best Play and Best Playwright. Her second solo play, Neat, was developed at Seattle Repertory Theatre. When it was produced at the Manhattan Theatre Club, it received the Irving and Blanche Laurie Theatre Vision Award and an Outer Critics Circle Award nomination. It was also presented at the Seattle Repertory Theatre and the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles. The Center Theatre Group of Los Angeles and Seattle Repertory Theatre jointly commissioned her third play, In Real Life, which was developed at the Sundance Theatre Lab. It was produced in 2003 at Manhattan Theatre Club, where Ms. Woodard was once again nominated for a Drama Desk Award and an Outer Critics Circle Award for best solo performance. At the Mark Taper Forum the play received an Audelco award, Backstage West Garland award, and NAACP awards for best playwright and actor.
Woodard is a member of The Actor’s Studio, and has been featured on many popular television series (Roseanne, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air). She is married to Alan Harris, a lawyer dealing with intellectual property. She has no children.