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Actress Molly Kidder '02 finds success on Grey's Anatomy

When actress Molly Kidder '02 auditioned for ABC's Grey's Anatomy, she was prepared to deliver lines and answer a few questions about her acting background. What she didn't expect was how much she'd be talking about Connecticut College.

"You don't generally get a lot of questions about your education at an audition like that," she said.

But one of the show's executive producers, Rob Corn P'10, was eager to talk to Kidder about the College. It was 2007 and his daughter, Casey Corn '10, had recently entered as a freshman.

"It's such a small world sometimes," Kidder said.

Though Kidder will never know if her alma mater had a direct influence, she soon found herself playing Dr. Megan Mostow, one of the interns shadowing the show's main character, Meredith Grey, played by Ellen Pompeo.

A winner of two Emmy awards, the medical show is one of the nation's most-watched drama series.

"It's been such a dream to work on," said Kidder. "The tabloid rumors that surround the show are nonsense. It's such a nice, friendly, warm atmosphere."

Initially, Kidder started out in more of a background role, where she picked up the lingo that comes with working on a television set and studied how the stars filmed a close-up shot.

"It was a great opportunity for me to watch and learn," she said.

Today, Kidder plays more of a leading role for the show, starring in six webisodes titled Grey's Anatomy: On Call, which began airing Nov. 19.

"The show had begun to go in a new direction since two of the hospitals merged," said Kidder. "These episodes will give more of a look at the interns who don't get as much air time right now."

Taking advantage of a liberal arts education, Kidder actually majored in French at the College, though she'd been passionate about acting since she was a child. Her background came in handy when she scored a part as a French-speaking nurse on the CBS drama, The Unit.

"I never expected to beat out French-born actresses for a role," she said.

Kidder also took many courses in the theater department and is still close with her fellow acting classmates. After graduating, she and seven other alumni formed the New York City theater company, Eastcheap Rep, with the help of faculty members Marya Ursin and J Ranelli.

"It was the right place for me to start after college," said Kidder. "It was such a supportive environment."

Luke Rosen '02, who worked with Kidder on Eastcheap Rep, said that it's been inspiring to watch Kidder on Grey's and "see such great work from such a good friend."

"She's so beautifully subtle but has a really powerful presence on screen, and that's really rare," Rosen said. "I'm constantly learning from Molly."

Rosen and the rest of the College community can watch a new episode of Grey's Anatomy: On Call on Thursdays through Jan. 21.

-Rachel Harrington

December 8, 2009