Kirsten Vangsness Poster


Jump to: Overview (3)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Trivia (8)  | Personal Quotes (2)  | Salary (1)

Overview (3)

Born in Los Angeles County, California, USA
Birth NameKirsten Simone Vangsness
Height 5' 7" (1.7 m)

Mini Bio (1)

While Kirsten is best known as the bespectacled-brainiac-tech-kitten Penelope Garcia on the CBS hit drama Criminal Minds (2005)(and its spin-off Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior (2011)), she has had a long and varied career prior to joining the cast of the hit CBS series. Stage appearances include Perfuct, The Book of Liz and a number of plays at Hollywood's Theatre of NOTE (where she has been a longtime member and past president of that theater's Artistic Board), including The Learned Ladies, The Fan Maroo, Spider Bites and A Mulholland Christmas Carol. Her stage work has garnered the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Natalie Schafer Award for best emerging comic actress, the 15 Minutes of Fem Best Actress Award, and a Garland Award for best actress for the West Coast premiere of Neil LaBute's Fat Pig at the Geffen Playhouse. She was recently seen on stage as the torch-singing femme fatale in []link=nm1670679' critically acclaimed film noir spoof Kill Me, Deadly (2015) which is being made into a feature starring and executive produced by Vangsness. Vangsness has written a number of plays and performance-art pieces which have been seen throughout Los Angeles. Her most recent one woman show Mess, played to sold out audiences in Hollywood at Theatre of NOTE. In addition to Criminal Minds, Kirsten can also be seen in season three of the weirdly wonderful web series Pretty and season two of the web series Vampire Mob. Other film appearances include The A-List (2006), Scream of the Bikini (2009), In My Sleep (2010), and The Chicago 8 (2011).

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Anonymous

Trivia (8)

Her day jobs included substitute teacher, child counselor, restaurant hostess, personal assistant, grant writer, and murder mystery dinner theater actress. Her first paid acting job was a Diet Dr. Pepper commercial.
She is a solo performer and her writing has been published in the Los Angeles Times Magazine.
She is a member of Theatre of NOTE in Los Angeles, California, and continues to perform there.
In 2005, she won the LA Drama Critics Circle Natalie Schafer Award for Best Emerging Comedic Actress. The award was given to her on March 21, 2005, at the Coronet THeatre.
Was updated as a featured performer in the 2006 season of Criminal Minds (2005).
Is 50% Norwegian; her father is from Norway. Her mother is of Italian ancestry.
Graduated from California State University Fullerton Theatre & Dance Dept.
Co-wrote the Criminal Minds (2005) episode Criminal Minds: Nelson's Sparrow (2015), which features the (off-screen) murder of Jason Gideon, the character Mandy Patinkin played in seasons one and two, and the first two episodes of season three.

Personal Quotes (2)

I am always sort of delightedly surprised when someone recognizes me because as far as I'm concerned, I'm just going to work and getting paid to act and that alone is fantastic, I forget people watch it too. [Interview with Style Bible, September 2010.]
I'm as queer as a purple unicorn singing Madonna.

Salary (1)

Criminal Minds (2005) $100,000 per episode (2013-2014)

See also

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