Michael Learned

Actor
Intelligent, sometimes with a stern aura, yet attractive, warm and inviting, Michael Learned was a stage actress virtually unknown to TV viewers when she was cast as Olivia Walton, mother of John-Boy and the others, in ... Read more »
Born: 04/09/1939 in Washington, Washington D.C., USA

Filmography

Actor (43)

Cold Case 2009 (Tv Show)

Actor

Scrubs 2006, 2009 (Tv Show)

Actor

Loggerheads 2005 (Movie)

Sheridan (Actor)

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit 2003 (Tv Show)

Actor

TV Moms at Home 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)

Actor

Profiler 1997 - 1998 (Tv Show)

Actor

Promised Land 1997 - 1998 (Tv Show)

Actor

The Alarmist 1998 (Movie)

Beth Hudler (Actor)

A Walton Wedding 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Actor

A Walton Thanksgiving Reunion 1993 - 1994 (TV Show)

Actor

The 48th Annual Tony Awards 1993 - 1994 (TV Show)

Presenter

Dragon: the Bruce Lee Story 1993 (Movie)

Vivian Emery (Actor)

ABC's Comedy Sneak Peek 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Actor

Living Dolls 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Actor

Hothouse 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Actor

All My Sons 1986 - 1987 (TV Show)

Actor

Picnic 1986 - 1987 (TV Show)

Actor

Power 1986 (Movie)

Governor Andrea Sandard (Actor)

The Parade 1983 - 1984 (TV Show)

Actor

Mother's Day on Waltons Mountain 1981 - 1982 (TV Show)

Actor

The Waltons 1972 - 1981 (TV Show)

Actor

Nurse 1979 - 1980 (TV Show)

Actor

Touched By Love 1980 (Movie)

Dr Bell (Actor)

Dean Martin's California Christmas 1975 - 1976 (TV Show)

Actor

Hurricane 1974 - 1975 (TV Show)

Actor

It Couldn't Happen to a Nicer Guy 1974 - 1975 (TV Show)

Actor

A Christmas Without Snow (TV Show)

Actor

A Deadly Business (TV Show)

Actor

A Father For Brittany (TV Show)

Actor

A Walton Easter (TV Show)

Actor

Aftermath: A Test of Love (TV Show)

Actor

Gunsmoke: The Last Apache (TV Show)

Actor

Keeping Secrets (TV Show)

Actor

Little Mo (TV Show)

Actor

Mercy or Murder? (TV Show)

Actor

Nurse (TV Show)

Actor

Off the Minnesota Strip (TV Show)

Actor

Roots: The Gift (TV Show)

Actor

The American Revolution (TV Show)

Voice

The Statesman (TV Show)

Actor

Widow (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

Intelligent, sometimes with a stern aura, yet attractive, warm and inviting, Michael Learned was a stage actress virtually unknown to TV viewers when she was cast as Olivia Walton, mother of John-Boy and the others, in the long-running CBS series "The Waltons" (1972-81). Assuming the role that Patricia Neal had originated in a TV-movie special, Learned was so unknown that she was originally billed as "Miss Michael Learned" lest the audience be confused as to her gender and about which part she was playing. A mother of three by the time she was 24, Learned had honed her craft primarily at the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco, where she performed leading roles in such classics as "Under Milk Wood," "Tartuffe" and "Private Lives." Recently separated from her first husband actor Peter Donat when she was cast in "The Waltons," she remained with the series until 1980 (a year before it ended its run), when her character was sent away with tuberculosis. During her tenure on the series, Learned earned three Best Actress Emmy Awards (in 1973, 1974 and 1976) for her turn as the stalwart matriarch. The actress made several attempts to recapture her TV success with the medically themed "Nurse" (CBS, 1981-82), which earned her a fourth Emmy, and as a doctor working in a psychiatric clinic in the short-lived "Hothouse" (ABC, 1988). In 1989, she tried sitcoms as den mother for models on ABC's "Living Dolls," a spin-off from "Who's the Boss?," which also starred Halle Berry.

Relationships

Caleb Donat

Son

Christopher Donat

Son

Father

Glenn Chadwick

Husband
married in 1974 divorced in 1976

Peter Donat

Husband
married on September 8, 1956 separated in 1971 divorced in 1974

Lucas Donat

Son
married to Traci Wald

William Parker

Husband
married on December 18, 1979

EDUCATION

attended English boarding school

American Conservatory Theatre

San Francisco , California

Milestones

2002

Appeared in the McCarter Theater production of Edward Albee's "All Over"

2000

Co-starred in the Broadway revival of "The Best Man"

1991

Played Suzanne Somers mother in "Keeping Secrets"; Helen Hunt's mother'in-law in miniseries "Murder in New Hampshire: The Pamela Smart Story"

1989

Starred in ABC sitcom "Living Dolls"

1988

Returned to series TV in the short-lived ABC medical drama "Hothouse"

1974

Made TV-movie debut, "It Couldn't Happen to a Nicer Guy" (ABC)

1972

Starred as Olivia Walton on TV series "The Waltons" (CBS); won three Emmy Awards

1970

Moved to L.A.

1956

Moved with Donat to San Francisco

1955

Began career in show business as an apprentice at the American Shakespeare Festival in Stratford, Connecticut; met future husband Peter Donat

Had starring role in the CBS medical series "Nurse"; won fourth Emmy

As an adolescent, grew up in Austria while her father worked there as a US government employee

Reprised role of Olivia Walton in TV-movie reunion specials in 1993, 1995 and 1997

Became company member of the American Conservatory Theatre, appeared in

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