Clarinda’s Bio

Clarinda Ross grew up in Boone, North Carolina where both her parents were professors at Appalachian State University.


Clarinda’s father, the late Dr. Carl A. Ross, Jr., was chairman of the Appalachian Studies Department at ASU and a respected historian. Her mother, Charlotte, is a renowned storyteller of the Appalachian region. Ms. Ross graduated from Appalachian State with a B.A. in theatre.


Clarinda furthered her studies at the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta and at the Conservatory program of the Alabama Shakespeare Festival. She has worked at many major regional theatres including The Alley Theatre, The Alliance Theatre in Atlanta and spent several years as a leading lady with the Atlanta Shakespeare Company.


Clarinda has written the screenplay for the acclaimed southern writer Lee Smith’s novel FAMILY LINEN. She is also one of the producers on the film.


Her feature film credits include Blue Sky with Jessica Lange and Tommy Lee Jones, and Fluke with Matthew Modine and Eric Stoltz, The Sky Is Falling and View From The Top with Gwyneth Paltrow. Her television appearances include: Judging Amy, E.R., Drew Carey, The Client, The District, In The Heat of The Night, I’ll Fly Away, United States of Tara, Medium and several movies of the week, most notably the Emmy award-winning Stolen Babies with Mary Tyler Moore.


Ms. Ross received an individual artist grant from the NEA at age 23 and developed her first one-woman play, FROM MY GRANDMOTHER’S GRANDMOTHER UNTO ME, which was developed and directed by David Thomas and is based on Clarinda's southern ancestors. GRANDMOTHER was a runaway hit at the Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC and was featured in the Olympic Arts Festival in Lillehammer, Norway in 1994 and at the summer games in Atlanta in 1996. Clarinda also starred in the movie version of GRANDMOTHER , for PBS, directed by John David Allen.


Her latest play, SPIT LIKE A BIG GIRL  deals with growing up southern, the death of her father, and raising her mentally disabled daughter. SPIT LIKE A BIG GIRL premiered as a part of the subscription season at Rubicon Theatre in Ventura, CA directed by Jenny Sullivan. Clarinda is a member of the Pacific Resident Theatre Ensemble in Venice, CA. Ms. Ross is on the National Council of Actors’ Equity Association and is a voter for the Tony Awards.


She has three children, Clara, Frank, and Gus and is married to the actor, Googy Gress. Her family splits their time between California and North Carolina.

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