5 Things To Know About Katharine Hepburn (‘28)

  1. 1. She has the most Academy Awards of any actor in history

    Katharine Hepburn currently holds the title for most awarded actor in history with four wins and 12 nominations. Even though she holds this record, she never once attended the ceremony for any of her wins or nominations. Her winning performances can be seen in Morning Glory (1933), Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner (1967), The Lion in Winter (1968) and On Golden Pond (1981).

  2. 2. She discovered her love of acting at Bryn Mawr

    Amidst her studies at college, she worked in the various theater productions held on campus. Hepburn continued to love the theater throughout her career; she even included a clause in her contract stating she had the right to leave Hollywood at any time to return to the stage!

  3. 3. Her famous accent isn’t real

    Hepburn’s Mid-Atlantic accent is one of, if not the most defining characteristic of her career. But it’s not real! This accent is a mixture of British pronunciation with American English that was very popular during the 1930s and 40s, especially in film. If you want to credit someone for such a famous voice, look no further than Frances Robinson-Duff, Katharine Hepburn’s vocal coach!

  4. 4. The Hepburn Teaching Theater in Goodhart Hall is named after both her and her mother, Katharine Houghton Hepburn (1899)

    One of the main reasons Katharine Hepburn attended Bryn Mawr College was in part because of her mother’s alumna status and her insistence on a college education. Both of them had an appreciation for the arts, theater in particular. The teaching theater, located in Goodhart Hall, opened in 2009.

  5. 5. She started Bryn Mawr’s tradition of skinny-dipping in the Cloisters

    The famous tradition of students skinny-dipping in the fountain found in the Cloisters can be dated back to the actress! The story goes that when studying in Old Library (then an actual library) came to be too much for Kate, she would go outside and refresh herself in the fountain in order to de-stress. Today, it’s a rite of passage for all Bryn Mawr students!