An actress is a woman who plays character roles in stage plays, motion pictures, or serials on the television. The term is sometimes also used to refer to a female who lends her voice to radio production. Even though theater as a form of cultural and artistic expression began evolving during the ancient times, initially women were not allowed to perform on stage. Acting as a profession was considered immoral and respectable women were prohibited from appearing on stage. This meant that male actors had to portray female characters, though the so-called fallen women like prostitutes and courtesans did perform occasionally. The situation began changing during the 17th century in England when women began to act on stage–Margaret Hughes is credited to be the first female to have graced the English stage. It was during those times that the word ‘actress’ was coined to differentiate female performers from the males. Even though it was increasingly becoming acceptable for women to become actresses, it was not considered a respectable profession till the 20th century in several societies. Times have really changed now with many intelligent, educated and versatile women choosing to pursue the creative field of acting. This section provides you with the biographies, containing trivia, timelines, persona and professional information, of film and stages actresses covering various genres from all over the world.
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