NEW YORK (AP) — Bob Lupon, the actor who earned a Tony Award nomination for his first run of “A Chorus Line” and founded and led the influential Off-Broadway troupe MCC Theaters for nearly 40 years, has died. he was 76 years old.
LuPone, the brother of Broadway icon Patti LuPone, died Saturday after a three-year battle with pancreatic cancer, according to Matt Ross Public Relations.
“The MCC theater community is our beloved and unique inspirational partner and colleague who has lived fearlessly, with great curiosity, humor, an endless passion for connection and a lot of heart. , and mourn the loss of our dear friend Bob Lupon. We will miss him deeply and always,” the company said in a statement.
LuPone’s first professional job was in 1966 at the Westbury Music Fair as an ensemble in the production of The Pajama Game starring Liza Minnelli. He made his Broadway debut in his 1968 Noel Coward’s ‘Sweet Potatoes’, followed by appearances in ‘Minnie Boys’, ‘The Rothschilds’ and ‘The Magic Show’.
LuPone was originally cast as Al in “A Chorus Line,” but persuaded creator and director Michael Bennett to play Zack after the original actor left. LuPone was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Actor.
Born in Brooklyn, New York in 1946, LuPone graduated from the Juilliard School in 1968 with a BA in Dance.
He was teaching an acting class at New York University when one of his students was Bernie Telsey. Together they helped form The Manhattan Class Company (now he is known as MCC Theater) in 1986.
LuPone, Telsey, and third co-artistic director Will Cantler have shaped MCC into a theater powerhouse with ‘Frozen,’ ‘Reasons to be Pretty,’ ‘Hand to God,’ ‘School Girls,’ and more produced a production for Broadway. Or African Mean Girls Play,” “Snow Geese,” “The Other Place,” and the Pulitzer Prize-winning “Wit.”
In addition to serving as co-artistic director of MCC, LuPone also worked as an actor, appearing on Broadway in “A View from the Bridge,” “True West,” and “A Thousand Clowns.” He appeared at the Chicago premiere of Sam Shepard’s ‘The Tooth of Crime,’ and on television he appeared in ‘The Sopranos,’ ‘Sex and the City,’ ‘Guiding Light,’ and ‘All My Children. It was nominated for an Emmy Award.
He also served as Director of the MFA Drama Program at The New School for Drama from 2005 to 2011 and was Chairman of the Board of Directors of ART/New York.
LuPone is survived by his wife, Virginia. his son, Orlando; Sister, Patty. and his brother, William.
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