Frances Sternhagen, a distinguished actress renowned for her remarkable contributions to stage, television, and film, passed away at the age of 93 due to natural causes. Known for her memorable roles as Esther Clavin on the classic sitcom “Cheers” and Bunny MacDougal on “Sex and the City,” Sternhagen’s career was illustrious, earning her immense recognition and acclaim across multiple platforms in the entertainment industry.
Her son, John Carlin, shared the news of her passing on social media, highlighting her richly lived life and commemorating her legacy. Sternhagen’s achievements were indeed numerous, marked by nominations for three Emmys and an impressive seven Tony awards, winning two for her outstanding performances in “The Good Doctor” and “The Heiress.” Her final appearance before retiring from acting was in the 2014 film “And So It Goes.”
While she showcased her talents on television and in movies, Sternhagen held a special affinity for Broadway. Her extensive experience on stage spanned several decades, gracing productions such as “The Skin of Our Teeth,” “The Good Doctor,” and her final Broadway performance in “Seascape” in 2005. In an interview with TDF, she expressed her deep love for the stage, emphasizing the unique connection and relationship an actor forges with the live audience.
Sternhagen cherished the immediacy and intimacy of live performances, highlighting the distinctive bond established with the audience during theatrical productions. The genuine feedback from the audience, whether through laughter or moments of profound silence, held immense significance for her, fostering an enduring passion for the stage that characterized her illustrious career.
Frances Sternhagen’s legacy extends beyond her memorable roles; it encompasses her dedication to the craft of acting, her profound impact on Broadway, and her enduring commitment to delivering exceptional performances that resonated deeply with audiences. Her contributions to the entertainment industry will be remembered fondly, leaving an indelible mark on the world of acting and theater.