Volume 9, Number 1, 1999

Three sisters

First, there’s Elizabeth Adams Kindig, who goes by Lisa Kindig and whose Actor’s Equity name is Lisa Lindley. Then, there’s Catherine Adams Lindley, who always has been called Casey and whose stage name is Casey Stewart-Lindley. And, don’t forget Victoria Adams Lindley, whose professional name is Victoria Adams, but everyone calls her Tori.

Wondering just who these women are? Wondering what it’s like when these three sisters go home for the hollidays? Suffice it to say, all three are talented graduates of UD’s Professional Theatre Training Program (PTTP). For the purposes of this story, let’s use the names they used when they were enrolled at UD. Lisa, AS ’92M, Casey and Tori, both AS ’95M, all were inspired to be part of the world of theatre by their mother, Carlyn Cahill, director of theatre and chairperson of the theatre department at Lorain County Community College near Cleveland, and formerly the chairperson of the Department of Communications at the U.S. University of the Virgin Islands.

All three grew up in theatre and can remember acting from the age of 3.

At her mother’s suggestion, Lisa enrolled in PTTP first. Although she now works in business, she says, “I use the project management, idea generation/ brainstorming, communication, time management and personnel management skills I learned in PTTP every single day!

“Though I learned a lot in business school about finance, marketing and business planning, PTTP provided me with far superior overall management skills than I ever received during my MBA program.”

With her husband, engineer Glenn Kindig, Lisa lives in Rochester, N.Y., where she works for Harris Interactive, provider of online market research in the U.S.

Of her two sisters who remain active in theatre, Lisa says, “I’m so proud of them, personally and professionally. I think what they do is the most difficult job in the world. I certainly didn’t have the courage it takes to carve out a career as an artist. They are the bravest people I know.”

And, while Casey and Tori agree that they love theatre, Tori concedes it’s not always the easiest road.

“Theatre is an incredibly difficult business. Not only is it competitive, it is very subjective as well. It is difficult to explain just how much relies on what you look like, who you know, who you remind them of (good or bad). Are you too blonde? Not blonde enough? Too tall? Too short?” she says. “Most of the time, the things that surround who gets a job are not things you can change. You go and give the best audition you can, and then let it go. Then, you move on to the next audition. It is almost a game…of patience, of luck and mostly of persistence…and I can’t imagine living without it!”

There’s also something to be said about what actors judge excellent work as opposed to work that pays the bills.

“It’s interesting to me that what impresses most people, as far as my credits are concerned, is very different from what I am proud of,” Tori says. “The most noteworthy thing I have done is to have the recurring role of Babs Walker on NBC’s Another World. And, while I was glad to get that job, and it paid a lot of my bills for a while, it was not particularly fulfilling artistically. Some of my best and most rewarding work happened at the Utah Shakespeare Festival and the work I did at PTTP.

“As far as I’m concerned, nothing compares to how it felt to do The Three Sisters with Casey and I playing sisters; Dancing at Laughnasa, again with Casey and I playing sisters; and As You Like It, where Casey and I played cousins," she says.

Tori, who lives in New York City, keeps busy auditioning and acting. Last summer, she worked in Maine and on Cape Cod in a touring show and spent much of the fall in upstate New York in shows there.

Casey was scheduled to bring her one-woman show, The Entire Contents of the Refrigerator, to campus in February, before she was cast as the lead in Shaw’s Misalliance, scheduled at the same time at the Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis. Casey also stays busy auditioning and acting in New York, although the two sisters say they are so different, they have never competed for the same roles.

Casey has appeared on The Guiding Light and All My Children, in commercials, film and in the national touring company of Picasso at the Lapin Agile. Currently, she is planning a four-month tour of Australia with The Entire Contents.

“Going to PTTP was one of the best career moves I have ever made,” she says, adding it has given her the opportunity to do classic and contemporary plays “all over the place.”

Once, while working at the Utah Shakespearean Festival, she found a pregnant and starving cocker spaniel, which she named Flear, after the farce, A Flea in Her Ear. Since then, the dog is her constant companion and traveling mate.

–Beth Thomas