Brandis Kemp, shown here in an episode of the ABC-TV sketch comedy series "Fridays", played the part of Pershing VA hospital administrator Alma Cox on the "M*A*S*H" spinoff series "AfterMASH".
|Born:||February 1, 1951|
|Birthplace:||Palo Alto, California, U.S.|
|Spouse(s):||Mark Blankfield, 1972-? (divorced)|
|Appeared on/Involved with:||AfterMASH|
|Character/appeared as:||Alma Cox|
Brandis Kemp (born Sally Kemp on February 1, 1951) is an American actress best known for her appearance on the ABC-TV late night sketch comedy series Fridays from 1980-82. Brandis also appeared on AfterMASH, where she appeared as Alma Cox, an administrator at the Pershing VA hospital. She, since then, has managed to appear in a vast variety of films and TV shows as a character actress for the remainder of her career.
Brandis grew up in Palo Alto, CA, and attended three colleges honing her skills. They were San Jose State College, Stanford University (where she earned a master's degree in drama and literature) and the American Conservatory Theatre. She credits the teachings of John Lehne, Jered Barclay, Ken McMillan, Gerry Hiken, Negal Jacson and Alan Fletcher as her acting influences. She battled dyslexia throughout her school years. After college she spent a year in Hawaii, then to Oregon where she met future fellow Fridays cast member and future husband (now former) Mark Blankfield at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. She then moved to New York for five years. Her first job in New York was teaching speech to policemen and firemen at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. In 1979 she moved to Los Angeles just before the Fridays TV series job opportunity broke.
Brandis has performed in such productions:
- Meetin' On The Porch - The Canon Theatre
- A Man's A Man - La Jolla (CA) Playhouse
- Look Homeward, Angel - Pasadena (CA) Playhouse
- Women Behind Bars - Roxy & Cast Theatre
- Bullshot Crummond - Westwood Playhouse, Coronet Theatre and National Tour
- El Grande de Coca Cola - Studio One
She has also performed at:
- Stanford Repertory Theatre - (Two Seasons)
- Oregon Shakespeare Festival - (One Season)
Producers of the TV show caught her performances as part of the Low Moan Spectacular comedy troupe in the plays "Bullshot Crummond" and "El Grande de Coca Cola" and selected her as a member of their new ensemble cast. In 1980 she developed strong comedic recurring characters such as the "Creative Palm Reader" as well as adding her talents to comedy sketches on many different levels. She became the "go to" female cast member because of her flexibility and strong delivery. She co-starred with Mark Blankfield, Jack Burns, Maryedith Burrell, Melanie Chartoff, Larry David, Rich Hall, Darrow Igus, Bruce Mahler, Michael Richards and John Roarke. The show completed in 1982.
Producers of the TV show caught her six-month performance in the stage comedy "Women Behind Bars" and liked the character she was playing. She was playing an assistant to the prison matron. It was similar to the Alma Cox character they were creating for the TV show. She started the TV show as an occasionally recurring character but after only four episodes she quickly graduated to a regular cast member because of the popularity of Alma Cox. After the first 13 episodes she appeared in every episode. She appeared with David Ackroyd, Rosalind Chao, John Chappell, William Christopher, Patrick Cranshaw, Jamie Farr, Peter Michael Goetz, Harry Morgan, Anne Pitoniak, Jay O. Sanders and Barbara Townsend. The show completed in 1985.
Film & Other TVEdit
Starting in 1985, Brandis applied her same flexible talents with strong characterizations in a wide variety of films and TV shows until 2003.
- Brandis Kemp at the Internet Movie Database