A lithe, attractive blonde, Emily Skinner shot to overnight stardom as half of the conjoined twins Violet and Daisy Hilton in the fictionalized Broadway musical "Side Show" (1997). The Virginia native attended Carnegie-Mellon University and by 1994 found herself working in NYC in the debut of the now annual staging of "A Christmas Carol". With the year, she was featured in the ensemble of the musical version of "Elmer Gantry" staged at Washington, DC's Ford's Theatre. Skinner made her official Broadway debut (billed as Emily Scott Skinner) in the ensemble of "Jekyll & Hyde" and as understudy to the show's two leading roles. She wasn't with the production long, however, because she was tapped to co-star as Daisy Hilton in "Side Show", a project she had been involved with for some two and a half years since its initial workshop. She and Ripley formed a flawless duo; with makeup, they looked exactly alike. Together they delivered the musical's big numbers, including the lilting "Who Will Love Me as I Am?" and the penultimate "I Will Never Leave You". In a rare instance, the Tony Award nominating committee jointly nominated the two woman as Leading Actress in a Musical, although the award went to Natasha Richardson.