Susan Dey was one of the greatest TV stars of the 1970s when she was just 18 years old.
From 1970 through 1974, “The Partridge Family” featured the life of a musical family living in the imaginary city of San Pueblo, California.
Dey, who was working as a model at the time, was cast as the elder sister Laurie in the ABC TV smash about a singing family that went to gigs in a restored psychedelic school bus.
Dey portrayed Laurie Partridge, a kind and clever major character on The Partridge Family, from 1970 until 1974.
The program captivated the hearts and minds of millions of Americans, and even when it slid from the top spot on American television, it gained renown across the pond, broadcasting in the United Kingdom.
Its popularity took a toll on the ensemble, with Dey alleged to have suffered from an eating problem and her weight dropping to 92 pounds, which a TV producer noticed and called her out on, prompting a new healthy eating regimen that did not require starving herself.
According to his biography, C’mon, Get Happy: Fear and Loathing on the Partridge Family Bus, David Cassidy, who portrayed Keith on the program, felt enormous pressure from his increase in fame, with “public frenzy” following his every move.
Cassidy became a teen idol throughout the show’s four-year run, drawing the interest of millions of women across the globe, including his co-star Susan Dey, who had a huge crush on the singing phenom.
They didn’t start dating until after the concert, but their relationship was short-lived, with Cassidy leaving it suddenly and subsequently divulging sensitive information about her in his biography, including his opinion that she was too innocent for him.
Dey was devastated by the sensitive things Cassidy divulged about him and swore never to see him again, even declining to go to a Partridge family reunion years later, despite the pair being friends long after their relationship ended.
While appearing on “The Partridge Family,” Dey authored her own book, “Susan Dey’s Secrets on Boys, Beauty, and Popularity.”
Dey was bombarded with acting opportunities when the program ended, and she went on to feature in almost 20 movies, largely produced for TV, and 15 TV episodes, garnering her six Golden Globe and three Emmy nods.
Yet it was her work as Grace Van Owen in “LA Law” that earned her a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress. For six years, she portrayed a deputy district attorney in Los Angeles County who subsequently became a judge.
Susan Dey is said to have rejected the role of Sandy in Grease, an interesting coincidence given that Olivia Newton-John, who eventually played Sandy in the famous musical, had been offered the role of Laurie in “The Partridge Family” and agreed but was convinced not to take it by her management.
Dey was born Susan Hallock Dey in 1952 and grew up in Westchester County, New York. Her mom worked as a nurse, while her dad was an editor for the New Rochelle Standard-Star.
Dey has been out of the spotlight for the past decade and is said to be enjoying life in upstate New York, where she grew up, with her husband of more than three decades, Bernard.
Following her break-up with Dey, she declared her preference for romantic relationships with older guys. She said that she preferred older guys since they knew just how to achieve what they wanted.
Susan Dey has always been drawn to older guys, as she acknowledged to the press in 1988.
Her first husband, Lenny Hirshan, was an agent who was 25 years Dey’s senior. Sara was born in 1978, and the couple was married from 1976 until 1981.
In 1988, Susan married her present spouse, television producer Bernard Sofronski. They married in a modest, intimate ceremony attended by family and friends.
Bernie has taught her that love requires both giving and taking. She had no concept of love until she met him. She is feeling more energised and is letting herself become more and more herself every day. It makes life so much simpler when one can trust someone, she said in 1988.
Let’s hope the 69-year-old well-known actress is having a good time away from the spotlight and reminiscing about her upbringing.