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Obituaries

Celebrate the Life of Michael Larsen

Celebrate the Life of Michael Larsen

Michael Larsen worked on Broadway and off, coaching accomplished actors and students at J.P. Taravella High. After suffering with a heart condition for he passed away at age 57.

Avi Hoffman, Larsen’s friend of 32 years stated “He was a walking encyclopedia of musical theater, literally you could mention any year, any show, any production and he could tell you when it played, where it played, who starred in it, who the musical director was and everything else.” Hoffman was the last person to work with Larsen on stage. Bonded by a love for all things Yiddish, the two men attended the second annual International Yiddish Theater Festival in Bucharest, Romania, just weeks before Larsen’s death on Oct. 26. There they performed a two-man show.

Larsen wrote arrangements, directed, conducted, gave vocal lessons and coached students worldwide via Skype. Larsen, was also the beloved teacher at popular theatre summer camp called Stagedoor Manor. He spent 24 seasons as their Director/Master Teacher of Acting and Musical Theatre. His last 11 seasons he was co-Artistic Supervisor. At Stagedoor, he helped create and maintain a musical theatre program of extraordinarily high standards. The impact of Michael’s influence at Stagedoor Manor rings throughout professional theatre, television and film. Some of Michael’s former students, at Stagedoor and/or privately, included actors Natalie Portman, Josh Charles, Zach Braff, Jon Cryer, Amy Ryan, Bryce Dallas Howard, Mandy Moore, Mary Stuart Masterson, Alexander Chaplin, Erich Bergen, Julia Murney, Marni Raab, Jenny Powers, Courtney Balan, Todd Buonopane, Danny Gurwin, Yancey Arias, Etai Benson, playwright Jonathan Marc Sherman, directors Daniel Goldstein, Gordon Greenberg and Rachel Chavkin, film director Shawn Levy, and countless others.

On his Facebook page, Larsen posted: “I live for the smile in a kid’s eyes when they step offstage after a great performance.”

There is a memorial Monday, October 29th at 7pm at the Congregation Rodeph Sholom 7 West 83rd Street.

The video is Michael playing what he loved!

Obituaries

Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email: suzanna@t2conline.com

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