Nora Kirkpatrick grew up in rural Midwest, and studied in Spain, England and Africa before graduating from UCLA's school of Theatre, Film and Television in 2007. She has been working steadily in both TV and Film since her graduation, most recently playing Esther, Dwight's new love interest from the farm, on the final season of NBC's The Office.
Active in the indie film world as well, Nora has a supporting role in the film Big Sur, starring Kate Bosworth, that screened at the Sundance Film Festival this year.
She has two other films coming out in 2013: Sexy Evil Genius, starring Seth Green, and a voodoo thriller Bayou.
Nora is heavily involved in the sketch and improv world, often performing at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in Los Angeles. She also co-wrote and starred in two Funny or Die produced and funded webisodes entitled “Happy Place."
On the musical side, Nora has been playing accordion, keyboards and singing in the folk-rock group Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros since its inception in 2009. The band has appeared on Letterman twice, Jimmy Kimmel twice and on Conan three times. Their first album yielded a gold record, Rolling Stone listed the second album in its top 10 for 2012 and the third album comes out in summer. Earlier this month, the band won a GRAMMY with Mumford & Sons and Old Crow Medicine Show for best long-form music video, the film Big Easy Express, that also won the audience award at the SXSW Film Festival.
The band has played Coachella, Lollapalooza (both in Chicago and South America), Bonnaroo, SXSW, Newport Folk Festival, Outside Lands, among others, and many European music festivals. It curated a series of sold-out concerts and performance art in the Old Vic Tunnels in London at the request of Old Vic artistic director Kevin Spacey.
In her free time, Nora also writes songs and film scores. Her scores have appeared in several short films (Peter at the End, Elliot and others) and she wrote and composed original songs for the upcoming feature film Never, starring Zelda Williams.