Apparently, the Grim Reaper isn’t finished with 2016 just yet. StarTrek.com is saddened to report the passing of Barbara Tarbuck. The actress, whose many credits included Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Enterprise, died in Los Angeles on December 27 at the age of 74.
Born in Detroit, Tarbuck was just a child when she started performing in radio dramas. She later pursued a career as a professional actress and, on stage, television and film appeared in The Incredible Hulk, Brighton Beach Memoirs, Dallas, Newhart, Cagney & Lacey, Death of a Salesman, Falcon Crest, Moonlighting, Short Circuit, Six Characters in Search of an Author, Curly Sue, ER, NYPD Blue, Cold Case, Walking Tall (playing the mother of Dwayne Johnson’s character), Journeyman, General Hospital, Glee, American Horror Story and Dexter. She also directed plays and taught at Rutgers University, University of Wisconsin, Marymount College and UCLA Extension Entertainment Studies.
The actress made her Star Trek debut in 1991, when she guest starred as Leka Trion, leader of Peliar Zel, in the fourth-season TNG episode “The Host.” She returned to the Trek fold in 2002 with the Enterprise hour, “Shadows of P’Jem,” which cast her as Kalev, Chancellor of the Coridan government.
Tarbuck had most recently directed a production of the stage comedy, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, which ran from October until earlier this month at the Edgemar Center for the Arts in Santa Monica, California. “Teaching and acting and directing all feed one another in me,” Tarbuck wrote on her personal website. “I am as stimulated and questioned by the young people in my life as I am by new material or a famous director’s notes. On stage, before the camera, and in the classroom are the questions, demands, disappointments, delights that feed my soul. Mine is a life of continual change and upheaval. It is freedom and renewal and an underlying belief in the strength and dignity of human expression.”
Tarbuck was predeceased by her husband, James Denis Connelly, who died in 2005, and, according to The Wrap, is survived by her daughter, Jennifer Lane Connelly, son-in-law Samuel Chawinga and grandsons Cianan and Cuinn Chawinga. Please join StarTrek.com in offering our condolences to Tarbuck’s family, friends, colleagues and fans.