Character: Della Duncan
A critically acclaimed singer, actress and stage performer, Shirley Jones has charmed audiences since she started singing at the age of six. Upon graduating from high school, Shirley went to New York to audition for the casting director of Rodgers and Hammerstein. She was soon cast in the Broadway production of “South Pacific,” and within a year, she was starring in her first film, “Oklahoma.” Jones’ film career soared, and she was soon cast in “Carousel,” “April Love” and “Never Steal Anything Small .” In 1960, she earned an Academy Award for Supporting Actress, in the role of a prostitute opposite Burt Lancaster in “Elmer Gantry.” She continued her film career in “The Music Man,” “The Courtship of Eddie’s Father” and “Bedtime Story.”
In 1970, Jones made a transition to the small screen, cast in the role of Shirley Partridge in “The Partridge Family” starring opposite her stepson, David Cassidy. The cast capitalized on the show’s popularity by recording a few albums, which included the songs “I Think I Love You” and “Doesn’t Somebody Want to Be Wanted.” Jones’ numerous other television credits include regular roles on “Shirley” and “The Drew Carey Show,” and guest appearances on “Melrose Place,” “Sabrina, the Teenage Witch,” “Days of Our Lives,” “The Cleaner” and most recently “Ruby & the Rockits.”
She received a star on the Walk of Fame in 1986. In the 1990s, Jones focused her efforts on a successful concert career, touring the U.S. as a singer, and is still touring in 2011.
Jones is married to comedian Marty Ingels and is the mother to three other sons, Shaun, Patrick and Ryan Cassidy, who all have had careers in theater, stage and screen.
Jones currently resides in Los Angeles.
Della Duncan has worked as a housekeeper for the Longstreet family for decades. She’s strong-willed and fiercely protective of Tucker and his siblings.