Broadway Cares and the entire New York theater community mourn the passing of actor and actors’ advocate Patrick Quinn, First Vice President of BC/EFA’s board of trustees and President of Actors’ Equity since 2000. Mr. Quinn, who died unexpectedly of a heart attack at his vacation home in the Poconos, was 56.
A founding member of Equity Fights AIDS, in October Quinn would have assumed the position of Executive Director of Actors’ Equity, following Alan Eisenberg’s 25 years at the helm of the Union
Quinn’s untimely passing left many friends and fellow performers devastated at Sunday’s Flea Market and Grand Auction in Shubert Alley.
“To hear of Patrick Quinn’s death, particularly on this day is unimaginable. Patrick was a founding member of Equity Fights AIDS and then First Vice President of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. His enthusiasm and generous spirit helped create and nurture the organization we are today,” said BC/EFA Executive Director Tom Viola.
“I know the sun we had during what was supposed to be a rainy Sunday came at Pat’s heavenly instigation – his insistence if he could not be there with us in Shubert Alley. We will miss him dearly and remember him always.”
“Colleen (Dewhurst) adored Patrick,” continues Viola. “When she was President (1985-1991), she often referred to him as ‘First Vice.’ They were a perfect team. As First Vice-President of Equity Patrick ran a smart, efficient Equity Council meeting, understanding the mechanics and politics of the required parliamentary procedure.
“Colleen, as President, would appear and do what she did best, inspire and encourage people – including Patrick – to do their best. But she had little understanding or time for the intricacies of parliamentary procedure, probably at best considering them the rules governing how one visited those large buildings on the Thames in London when on vacation.”
“But I know Colleen Dewhurst loved Patrick Quinn like a son.”
More than 30 Years on Broadway
As a performer, Quinn was known for his roles as “Lumiere” in Beauty and the Beast, “Applegate” in Damn Yankees, “Max Detweiler” in The Sound of Music and several characters in the 1976 revival of Fiddler on the Roof, with Zero Mostel.
His most recent appearance was in the Cape Playhouse production of Sylvia. In 2005, Quinn starred as Daddy Warbucks in the record-breaking engagement of Annie at Walnut Street Theater in his native Philadelphia and reprised that role in this season’s Annie Warbucks. Quinn’s last Broadway role was in the 2001 musical A Class Act, the perfect title for this industry leader’s swansong.
Mr. Quinn is survived by his partner Martin Casella. He is also survived by his brothers James and his wife Sondra, of Naples, Florida; Gerard and his wife Gail of Cotesville, Pa; John and his wife Marguerite, of Doylestown, Pa; and a sister, Lizanne Antonucci and her husband Joseph; and nine (9) nephews and nieces.
In lieu of flowers, donations should be made to the Actors’ Equity Foundation, BC/EFA, or the Actors’ Fund of America.