Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip/Harriet Hayes

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Harriet Hayes
Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip
Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip-Harriet Hayes.jpg
Actor Sarah Paulson
First Appearance 1x01 - Pilot
Last Appearance
Series Billing Series: Billed
Episode Count
Notable Episodes

Harriet Hayes is a comedic actress who is a part of the Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip cast, as well as part of the "big three" inner circle of cast members along with Simon Stiles and Tom Jeter. She was formerly romantically involved with Matt Albie until they had a feud over her religion. She is portrayed on television by Sarah Paulson



Harriet was born Hannah Harriet Hayes to a secretary and a paper processing plant worker in Michigan. She was the youngest of seven children, but was the only girl in the family. She quickly bonded with her mother, who took her to Antioch Baptist Church every Sunday (an event that her father and brothers did not join them in).

Harriet first developed an interest in comedy when she became a fan of Judy Holliday through Bells Are Ringing. She starred in several church plays and, after forgetting a line and breaking into a Judy Holiday impression, she both became a comedian and decided to become baptized at the same time.

Following high school, Harriet was awarded an academic scholarship to study music at Rutgers. After 4 years of college in New Jersey she was awarded another scholarship to study for her masters in Music from Kansas State, but instead opted to go to Chicago and work with Second City. Later, she moved to Los Angeles in order to intern with the Groundlings.

During her time with the Groundlings, Harriet began to get stage time and was discovered by Danny Tripp when he was a segment producer for Studio 60. She auditioned and was added to the cast, but didn't break out as a star until Matt started writing specifically for her.

Many years later, Harriet continued her interest in music by recording a Christian album, which ultimately caused her and Matt to break-up their relationship when he refused to support her appearance on The 700 Club.

Character History

Memorable Moments


  • Triple Threat: Harriet is an actress foremost, but has also been a singer and dancer for most of her life. She attributes her rise in comedy to the fact that no one would hire her as a ballerina.
  • Impressions: On the show, Harriet has done several impressions that may be the stars of recurring sketches. Her impressions include: Holly Hunter, Juliette Lewis and Nancy Grace.
  • Name Origin: Harriet was named after Hannah, the biblical figure who prayed to God that if she conceived a child, she would give that child back to God. However, she goes by Harriet (her middle name) because there was already a Hannah Hayes in the Screen Actors Guild.