Katherine Parkinson is an English actress who is known for her performances in television and theatre productions, especially in comic roles. Her most famous role is of ‘Jen Barber’ in the Channel 4 sitcom ‘The IT Crowd,’ a role that she portrayed for seven years. She won the British Comedy Award for her impressive performance on the show. Her performances in shows like ‘Katy Brand's Big Ass Show’, ‘Doc Martin’, and ‘The Honourable Woman’ were also appreciated. Interested in the performing arts from a young age, she studied at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. She then went on to have a successful career on stage and performed at the Royal National Theatre. She has featured in plays like ‘Home, I'm Darling’, ’66 Books’, and ‘The Increased Difficulty of Concentration’. Eventually, she made her way into the television industry where also she established herself in no time. She has appeared in a few supporting roles in films as well.
Katherine Parkinson started her acting career on stage and appeared in more than twenty popular acts with various theatres. Her first big break came in 2002 when she was chosen for the role of ‘Stephanie’ in the play ‘The Age of Consent’. Parkinson then performed at The Gate Theatre, in London, appearing in ‘The Increased Difficulty of Concentration’ by Vaclav Havel and ‘The Riot Act’. She appeared as ‘Jo’ in the play ‘Sixty-Six Books’ at the ‘Bush Theatre’. At the Royal National Theatre, Parkinson featured in ‘Home, I'm Darling’, a play by Laura Wade, for which she was nominated for the Olivier Award for Best Actress.
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Katherine Parkinson made her debut on television in 2005 with an appearance in the show ‘Ahead of the Class’. She portrayed the character of ‘Pauline Lamb’ in the sitcom ‘Doc Martin’ for four years. In 2006, the makers of the British sitcom ‘The IT Crowd’ approached Parkinson for the role of ‘Jen Barber’. She duly accepted the offer to play ‘Jen,’ who is the head of the IT department despite having no knowledge of technology. She was part of the show for 24 episodes between 2006 and 2010. She also featured in the special episode telecast in 2013. Parkinson received several award nominations, including two at the BAFTA Awards for Best Female Performance in a Comedy Role; she ended up winning one. She also won the 2009 British Comedy Award for the Best TV Comedy Actress. After a successful run on the show, Parkinson received offers to play more comic roles and featured in shows like ‘Inside No. 9’.
She bagged one of the main roles, ‘Kim Hall’, in the drama series, ‘In the Club’ in the mid-2010s. In the science fiction show ‘Humans,’ Parkinson appeared as ‘Laura Hawkins’ in 24 episodes. She featured in another sitcom, ‘The Kennedys’, in one of the lead roles, ‘Brenda Kennedy’. She portrayed ‘Karen Muller’ in the sitcom ‘Hang Ups’.
Parkinson has also appeared in a few films like ‘Christmas at the Riviera’, ‘How to Lose Friends & Alienate People’, ‘St. Trinian's 2: The Legend of Fritton's Gold‘, and ‘The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society’, playing supporting roles. In addition, she has been featured in many radio shows, including ‘Diary of a Nobody’ and ‘The Lady from the Sea’.
Family & Personal Life
Katherine Jane Parkinson was born on March 9, 1978, in Hounslow, London, to Janet Parkinson and Alan Parkinson. She attended St Hilda's College, Oxford, and later she went to London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. She married English actor Harry Peacock in 2009, and has two daughters, Dora Peacock and Gwendolyn Peacock.