Kate Burton

Kate Burton


9/10/1957, Geneva, Switzerland

Birth Name



Also Known As

Katherine Burton
out of 10
User Rating
27 votes


Kate was born in Switzerland in 1957, but she was raised in Manhattan after her parents got divorced. Her parents were Richard Burton and Sybil Williams Christopher. Kate is also the step daughter of Elizabeth Taylor and Jordan Christopher. She earned a bachelor's degree in Russian studies and…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • Kate Burton (actress) is not Kate Burton (aid worker) who was kidnapped in the Gaza Strip in December 2005.

    • Kate's son Morgan is of 2006 pursuing a career in acting at Brown University.

    • During her studying at Yale University, Kate's roommate was Jane Kaczmarek. And it is interesting that Kate set a blind date between Jane and Bradley Withfort, and later two of them married.

    • Kate also earned a bachelor's degree in Russian studies and European history in 1979 from Brown University.

    • List of awards and nominations 1983; Theatre World Award, Present Laughter. 1990; Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play, Some Americans Abroad 1995; Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Performer in a Children's Special, Notes for My Daughter. 2002; 1) Tony Award nomination for Best Actress in a Play, Hedda Gabler 2) Tony Award nomination for Best Actress in a Featured Role, The Elephant Man. 2006; 1) Drama League Award nomination for Distinguished Performance, The Constant Wife. 2) Tony Award nomination for Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play, The Constant Wife. 3) Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series, Grey's Anatomy.

    • She received a 2006 Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play Tony Award nomination for her role in The Constant Wife. Her costar Lynn Redgrave also reveived a nomination.

    • Kate considers herself an American actress, but retains her British citizenship.

    • Kate has a son, Morgan, and a daughter, Charlotte, with her theater director husband, Michael Ritchie.

    • Daughter of Richard Burton and Sybil Williams.

  • Quotes

    • Kate Burton: (her advice to aspiring actors) I always say that you just never know. You think you can make a plan, but there is no plan. You have to keep yourself open and your heart full, and be open to the experience. The most important thing is that you have to be happy in your life. Your career cannot be your source of happiness. Your family and friends need to be the source of your happiness. Your career is an expression of you, but it can't be all of you.

    • Kate Burton: (about her sister Jessica) Jessica is mentally retarded which is very difficult. But she has been in a home for a very long time and it is something that has become part of our lives. Everybody has something in their family and it's hard... I feel fortunate that my father was so successful that he made the money he did so he could support her for the rest of her life. Certainly my life would have been different if Jessica had been all right. I wouldn't have been the daughter of Richard Burton. There would have been two of us to share things.

    • Kate Burton: (basically about her acting career) I feel very grateful to make my living as an actor. That was always my hope and my plan, to make my living this way. I didn't become an actor to win an award. I certainly didn't become an actor to be a star. I thought if I get to play interesting roles, and I get to be challenged and I get to make my living... that's enough for me.

    • Kate Burton (about her family): Basically, I'm part of this large, creative, mildly crazy, loosely connected loving family. But... really, these days, who isn't?

    • Kate Burton (about her acting roles): I'm usually the sweet wife... or the sweet dead wife.

  • This actress has the skills of being someone great on television.

    This actress is a jaw dropper. On Grey's Anatomy, the episode where she came to the hospital and all the truth was revealed about her condition and that embarrassed Meredith, I must say that her perfomance on that particular episode was 'BRILLIANT'. She nailed that character. She is one character I miss a lot. Kate Burton has talent. Everytime I think about that episode. I think about this scene specifically.

    Ellis Grey-'[pants] My-My work is what counts, it's what pays for this house it pays for...it pays for you and it pays for, it pays for Meredith, And for your precious lifestyle. So why don't you just leave me alone and let me do it?" *long awkward pause* I didn't think that she got enough credit for her work and I just wanted to say that I absolutely loved her performance in that scene, it was excellent. They chose a brilliant actress to pull off that scene. You actually believed her, believed that she believed George was Thatcher. *Applause Applause* Kate Burton. You did a Fabulous job.moreless
  • American TV has only shown us a glimps of this actress' skills

    Kate Burton's abilities as an actress are terribly underused on American TV. In her own words, she is usually the sweet wife or the sweet dead wife. Only in the last couple years in her role as Dr. Ellis Grey, mother of the title character, Dr. Meredith Grey, on Grey's Anatomy has she been able to show her range as an actress. In the role as former renown surgeon with Alzheimers we get to see some of Burton's range. One can see the drive that brought Ellis to her former job as head of surgery and pushed away the young Meredith, which could be easily charicaturized by a lesser actress. Burton brings a wide range of emotion in line with her role showing sadness, desperation, and even passion in addition to Ellis' commitment and drive to her medical career. Many years of experience, especially on the Broadway, show in her acting.

    I hope to see more of Kate Burton on TV, but I am not holding my breath. Unfortunately, packaging and youth, not quality and substance, are prevalent on American TV nowdays. Hopefully more shows like Grey's Anatomy will give her and other actors of her quality the exposure they and the American viewing public deserve.moreless