Jane Krakowski

Jane Krakowski (/krəˈkski/; born Jane Krajkowski;[1] October 11, 1968) is an American actress and singer. She is best known for the roles of Cousin Vicki in National Lampoon's Vacation, and Jenna Maroney in the NBC comedy series 30 Rock, for which she received four Primetime Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. Other notable television credits include Elaine Vassal on Ally McBeal and Jacqueline White in the Netflix comedy series Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.

Jane Krakowski
Krakowski at the 60th Primetime Emmy Awards in September 2008
Jane Krajkowski

(1968-10-11) October 11, 1968
EducationRutgers University
OccupationActress, singer
Years active1981–present
Partner(s)Robert Godley (2009–2013)

Krakowski also regularly performs on stage, winning a Tony Award for her performance in the Broadway revival of Nine, as well as receiving Tony nominations for Grand Hotel and She Loves Me, and a Laurence Olivier Award for her performance as Miss Adelaide in the West End revival of Guys and Dolls.

Early life

Krakowski was born in Parsippany-Troy Hills, New Jersey. Her father, Ed, is a chemical engineer, and her mother, Barbara Krajkowski (née Benoit), is a college theater instructor and producing artistic director for the Women's Theater Company.[2][3][4] She has an older brother.[5] Her father's family is Polish,[6] and while she speaks very little Polish, her father and grandparents are fluent.[7] Her mother is of half Polish descent, with the rest of her ancestry being French Canadian and Scottish.[8]

Krakowski grew up immersed in the local theater scene as a result of her parents' activities, saying in one interview: "Instead of hiring baby sitters, they brought me along with them."[2] She took ballet lessons at age four, but later stopped because she had the wrong body shape, instead moving more towards Broadway dancing.[5] She attended the Professional Children's School in New York City and Rutgers University, New Brunswick.[9][10]



Her first major television role was as Theresa Rebecca "T.R." Kendall in the NBC soap opera Search for Tomorrow for the NBC Daytime programming block, which she played from 1984[11] until the show ended on December 26, 1986. She was nominated for two consecutive Daytime Emmy Awards for her role in 1986 and 1987.

From 1997 to 2002, Krakowski played office assistant Elaine Vassal in the Fox comedy-drama series Ally McBeal; her role earned her a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress in 1999.[12]

In 2006, Krakowski was cast in the NBC comedy series 30 Rock, where she played Jenna Maroney, a cast member of the fictional late night sketch comedy show TGS with Tracy Jordan. In 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2013, she received nominations for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her role in 30 Rock.[13][14]

In 2015, Krakowski was cast in the Netflix comedy series Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt as Jacqueline White, for which she received her fifth Primetime Emmy Award nomination.[15]

Her guest appearances include a 1981 television commercial for the video game Solar Fox; a 1996 guest appearance on Early Edition as Dr. Handleman (season one, episode three: "Baby"); 2003 appearances on Everwood as psychologist Dr. Gretchen Trott, a love interest for Treat Williams' Dr. Andrew Brown; and on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit as Emma Spevak, a serial killer of elderly women; and a 2013 guest appearance on The Simpsons episode "The Fabulous Faker Boy" as Zhenya.


After her film debut, National Lampoon's Vacation in 1983,[12] Krakowski appeared in Fatal Attraction, The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas (where she played Betty Rubble), Marci X, Alfie, Go, Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant, Dance with Me, Stepping Out, Pretty Persuasion, Kit Kittredge: An American Girl, and Mom at Sixteen. Krakowski was originally cast in the horror film Sleepaway Camp (1983), but dropped out just before filming began because she felt her character's death scene with a curling iron was too violent. She appeared in When Zachary Beaver Came to Town as a mother who wants to become a singer. In 2004, she starred in Alan Menken's television movie version of A Christmas Carol, featured as The Ghost of Christmas Past. In 2006, she provided the voice of the deer Giselle in the animated film, Open Season.


A trained singer, Krakowski has made numerous appearances on stage. At age 18, she originated the role of Dinah the Dining Car in the 1987 Broadway production of Starlight Express. She appeared in the 1989 Broadway musical Grand Hotel as the typist and would-be film star Flaemmchen, for which she was nominated for a Tony Award.[11] Her solo number, "I Want to Go to Hollywood", is included on the original cast recording. At the 2000 American Comedy Awards, Krakowski won rave reviews when she performed a sexually charged musical tribute and love letter to Microsoft chairman, Bill Gates.

In 1995, she played the ditzy flight attendant April in the Roundabout Theater Company's revival of Company. In 1996, she starred alongside Sarah Jessica Parker in the Broadway revival of Once Upon a Mattress.

In January 2002, Windham Hill Records released an album that Jim Brickman had recorded, titled Love Songs & Lullabies; this album featured Krakowski as a vocalist for the song "You",[12] which became a hit on adult contemporary radio stations. Brickman and Krakowski also recorded an alternate Christmas version of the song. She also appeared on the album Broadway Cares: Home for the Holidays, singing the song "Santa Baby". In 2003, she starred as Carla in the Broadway revival of Nine,[16] for which she won the Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical.[12] Krakowski is known for her famous anti-gravity stunt during the number "A Call from the Vatican." Krakowski and the director struggled finding a company that would let her do air stunts without a harness; Krakowski came up with the idea of using the method previously portrayed in Broadway Bares. Krakowski recalled that the material took a long time to arrive, and the second time she ever did it was on the first performance.[17]

In 2005, she starred as Miss Adelaide in Michael Grandage's West End revival of Guys and Dolls at London's Piccadilly Theatre. She starred alongside Jenna Russell, Ewan McGregor and Douglas Hodge. Krakowski received the 2006 Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical for her performance[12] and performed a cabaret show called Better When It's Banned, which featured various songs from the 1920s and '30s[18] that were all deemed racy at the times of their original popularity.

Krakowski performed in a January 2007 workshop production and backers's audition for a Broadway musical adaption of the 1980 film, Xanadu, with music from the film's soundtrack and a book by Douglas Carter Beane.[19] Xanadu premiered on Broadway in Summer 2007, although Krakowski's role is played by Kerry Butler.

In 2008, Krakowski starred as Lola in New York City Center's production of Damn Yankees alongside Sean Hayes and Cheyenne Jackson.[20]

On July 30 and 31, 2009, Krakowski performed the title character in a reading of Mrs. Sharp, whose music was composed and whose lyrics were written by Ryan Scott Oliver, and whose book was written by Kirsten A. Guenther, at Playwrights Horizons.

She performed the role of Ilona Ritter in the Roundabout Theatre Company's Broadway revival of Jerry Bock's and Sheldon Harnick's She Loves Me, starring Laura Benanti and Zachary Levi.[21] The musical opened on March 17, 2016 at Studio 54. Krakowski won the 2016 Fred and Adele Astaire Award as Outstanding Female Dancer in a Broadway Show, the Outer Critics Circle Award, Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical, and the Drama Desk Award, Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical. She was also nominated for the Tony Award, Featured Actress in a Musical.[22]

Other works

Krakowski played Wanda in the music video for the Dixie Chicks' song "Goodbye Earl" in 2000, alongside Dennis Franz and Lauren Holly.[23] She guest starred in an episode of Due South, and in a season 5 episode of Modern Family.

Personal life

Krakowski became engaged to Robert Godley in 2009. They have a son, born in April 2011.[24] The couple separated in 2013.


Krakowski released her debut solo album on July 15, 2010–an album of cover versions called Laziest Gal in Town—on DRG Records.[25]

Selected recordings include:

  • 1992: Grand Hotel, Studio Cast Recording (mostly original Broadway cast)
  • 1995: Company, Broadway revival cast recording
  • 1997: Once Upon a Mattress, Broadway revival cast recording
  • 1997: Sondheim at the Movies (singing the Academy Award-winning song "Sooner or Later" from Dick Tracy)
  • 1998: The Burt Bacharach Album
  • 2002: A Broadway Valentine
  • 2003: Nine, Broadway revival cast recording
  • 2004: A Christmas Carol, television cast recording
  • 2010: The Laziest Gal in Town, solo album
  • 2016: She Loves Me, Broadway revival cast recording


Year Title Role Notes
1981 A Little Night Music Fredrika York Theater off off Broadway[26]
1987 Starlight Express Dinah the Dining Car Broadway
1989 Grand Hotel Flaemmchen Broadway
1995 Company April Broadway
1996 Once Upon a Mattress Lady Larken Broadway
2003 Nine Carla Broadway
2005 Guys and Dolls Adelaide West End
2007 Xanadu Clio / Kira Workshop
2008 Damn Yankees Lola Encores!
2009 Mrs. Sharp Mrs. Sharp Reading
2016 She Loves Me Ilona Ritter Broadway



Year Title Role Notes
1983 National Lampoon's Vacation Cousin Vicki
1987 Fatal Attraction Christine
1991 Stepping Out Lynne
1996 Mrs. Winterbourne Christine
1997 Hudson River Blues Diane
1998 Dance With Me Patricia Black
1999 Go Irene
2000 The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas Betty O'Shale
2002 Ice Age Rachel the Sloth Voice role
2003 Marci X Lauren Farb
2003 When Zachary Beaver Came to Town Heather Wilson
2004 Alfie Dorie
2005 Pretty Persuasion Emily Klein
2006 Open Season Giselle Voice role
2007 Surf's Up Sheila Limberfin (voice) Deleted scenes
2008 The Rocker Carol
2008 Kit Kittredge: An American Girl Miss May Dooley
2008 Open Season 2 Giselle Voice role
2009 Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant Corma Limbs
2014 Adult Beginners Miss Jenn
2014 Big Stone Gap Sweet Sue Tinsley
2015 Pixels First Lady Jane Cooper
2018 Henchmen Jane Voice role
TBA The Willoughbys Voice role


Year Title Role Notes
1983 No Big Deal Margaret Television film
1984–1986 Search for Tomorrow Theresa Rebecca "T.R." Kendall Soap opera
1989 Another World Tonya Soap opera
When We Were Young Linda Rosen Television special
1993 Alex Haley's Queen Jane Jackson 2 episodes
The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles Dale Winter Episode: "Young Indiana Jones and the Mystery of the Blues"
1994 Due South Catherine Burns Episode: "An Invitation to Romance"
1996 Early Edition Dr. Handleman Episode: "Baby"
1997–2002 Ally McBeal Elaine Vassal 110 episodes
2000 CatDog CatDog's Mother / Pussy Cat Catfield Voice roles
2 episodes
2002 Just a Walk in the Park Rachel Morgan Television film
2002–2003 Everwood Dr. Gretchen Trott Episodes: "The Doctor Is In" and "My Funny Valentine"
2002, 2004 Rocket Power Breezy (voice) Episodes: "There's Something About Breezy" and "Summer Breezy"
2004 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Emma Spevak Episode: "Bound"
Taste Samantha Neal Pilot
Hack Mrs. Smith Episode: "One for My Baby"
A Christmas Carol Ghost of Christmas Past / Lamplighter Television film
2005 Mom at Sixteen Donna Cooper Television film
2006 Sex, Love, Power, and Politics Sloan Pilot
2006–2013 30 Rock Jenna Maroney 128 episodes
2008 A Muppets Christmas: Letters to Santa Claire's Mom Television film
2013 The Simpsons Zhenya (voice) Episode: "The Fabulous Faker Boy"
2014, 2017 Modern Family Dr. Donna Duncan 2 episodes
2014 American Dad! Charlotte (voice) Episode: "Roger Passes the Bar"
2015–2019 Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Jacqueline White 51 episodes
2015 Younger Annabelle Bancroft Episode: "Shedonism"[27][28]
2016 Dead Boss Helen Stephens Pilot
Robot Chicken Headless Headmistress Bloodgood, Cruella de Vil, Old Lady (voice) Episode: "Yogurt in a Bag"
2017 Difficult People Lizzie McCormick Episode: "Cindarestylox"
BoJack Horseman Honey Sugarman (voice) Episode: "The Old Sugarman Place"
Tangled: The Series Willow (voice) Episode: "The Way of the Willow"
A Christmas Story Live! Miss Shields Television special
2018 Drunk History Sheralee Episode: "Sex"
2019 Last Week Tonight with John Oliver Spokesperson Episode: June 2, 2019
Dickinson Emily Norcross Dickinson Main cast


  1. Filichia, Peter (October 17, 2008). "Jane Krakowski to appear at theater fund-raiser". The Star-Ledger. Retrieved November 9, 2008.
  2. Nash, Margo (March 19, 2006). "Jersey Footlights". The New York Times. Retrieved January 21, 2019.
  3. "Jane Krakowski Biography (1968-)". Filmreference.com.
  4. "Obituaries - Beulah U. Dudley" Newsbank
  5. Tyrrel, Rebecca (September 5, 2005). "The secretary's star turn". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved November 9, 2008.
  6. Polish Cała rodzina po stronie mojego ojca jest polska (En All my family from my father's side is Polish) January 5, 2006, Mojawyspa
  7. Jane Krakowski: Z Krakowa do "Ally McBeal" Polish (...) mój tata rozmawiał po polsku. Moi dziadkowi rozmawiali na co dzień po angielsku, ale kłócili się tylko po polsku, żebyśmy ich nie zrozumieli! (En (...) my dad spoke Polish, and my grandparents spoke English at home, but they argued only in Polish, because they didn't want to be understood by us.) January 5, 2006, Mojayspa
  8. "Jane Krakowski". IMDb.
  9. Lipton, Michael A. (July 20, 1998). "Taking a Bough". People. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  10. "Ask a Star: Jane Krakowski". Broadway.com. September 15, 2008. Retrieved July 6, 2019.
  11. Syme, Rachel (June 22, 2008). "Jane Krakowski is Poetry in Motion". New York Post. Archived from the original on May 2, 2010. Retrieved November 9, 2008.
  12. "30 Rock Cast Biographies: Jane Krakowski". NBC. Archived from the original on May 10, 2008. Retrieved November 9, 2008.
  13. Hibberd, James (July 16, 2009). "Emmy nominee reactions rundown". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 11, 2019.
  14. Hibberd, James (July 8, 2010). "'Glee,' 'The Pacific' top Emmy noms". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 17, 2018.
  15. Jung, E. Alex (July 16, 2015). "Jane Krakowski on Emmy Nomination No. 5 -- Vulture". Vulture.com. Retrieved January 24, 2019.
  16. Hernandez, Ernio (May 20, 2003). "Nine Nominee Jane Krakowski "Calls" in a Showstopping Performance". Playbill. Retrieved April 5, 2018.
  17. Portantiere, Michael (June 24, 2003). "Jane Krakowski Takes Manhattan". Theater Mania. Retrieved April 19, 2019.
  18. Holden, Stephen (February 5, 2005). "Sorry, Santa, but Naughty Is More Fun Than Nice". The New York Times. Retrieved November 9, 2008.
  19. "Krakowski takes off skates". Variety. February 2, 2007. Retrieved November 9, 2008.
  20. Gans, Andrew (July 27, 2008). "Diva Talk: Chatting with Damn Yankees' Jane Krakowski". Playbill. Archived from the original on June 5, 2011. Retrieved November 9, 2008.
  21. Lloyd Webber, Imogen (September 1, 2015). "Zachary Levi Will Replace Josh Radnor in She Loves Me, Starring Laura Benanti, on Broadway". Broadway.com. Retrieved May 7, 2018.
  22. "She Loves Me Broadway @ Studio 54". Playbill. Retrieved May 17, 2016.
  23. "Dixie Chicks - Goodbye Earl". YouTube. October 2, 2009.
  24. Derschowitz, Jessica (April 22, 2011). "Jane Krakowski and Robert Godley welcome a son". CBS News. Retrieved January 24, 2019.
  25. "Jane Krakowski Releases 'The Laziest Gal in Town' Solo Album 7/15; Cover Art Revealed". BroadwayWorld.com. June 10, 2010. Retrieved August 5, 2019.
  26. Hutchins, Michael H. "Sondheim Guide / A Little Night Music". SondheimGuide.com.
  27. "Video: TV Land Releases New Behind-the-Scenes Featurette from Upcoming Darren Star Series "Younger"". The Futon Critic. March 17, 2015.
  28. Bentley, Jean (March 17, 2015). "TV Land's Younger Adds TV Favorites Jane Krakowski, Ana Gasteyer, and More — Plus, Watch a New Scene!". Us Weekly. Archived from the original on April 17, 2015. Retrieved August 19, 2018.
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