Legendary theatre director and producer Hal Prince dies aged 91
| By Jade Ali
21-time Tony Award-winning theatre legend Hal (Harold) Prince has sadly passed away at the age of 91. Even those with limited theatre knowledge will recognise the iconic shows that broke the mould of musical theatre, such as Phantom of the Opera, Sweeney Todd, Cabaret and Evita, to name just a few.
Background on Harold Prince
Harold Prince has accumulated more Tony Awards, a staggering 21, than any other person! He has eight Tony Awards for directing, eight for producing Best Musical of the year, two for Best Producer of a Musical and a further three special awards. He was an American producer and director and is widely known for his association with the biggest and most well-known musical productions there are.
His career in theatre began as an assistant stage manager under director and producer, George Abbott, who he went on to collaborate with and co-produce 1955 Tony Award-winning musical The Pajama Game. In 1962 he began directing his own productions and almost gave up musical theatre after various unsuccessful shows. Thankfully, the success of Cabaret in 1966 inspired Prince to continue his work in musical theatre. He went on to have numerous collaborations, famously including Stephen Sondheim and Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Harold Prince shows
We have a lot of shows to thank the remarkable Hal Prince for and the list really does go on and on, but here are some of the truly unforgettable productions that we are grateful for. West Side Story (co-producer), Fiddler on the Roof (producer), Cabaret (producer/director), Company (producer/director), Follies (producer/director), Sweeney Todd (director), Evita (director), and of course, Phantom of the Opera (director). Among his last works was Paradise Found (2010) at London’s Menier Chocolate Factory.
Thank you, Hal Prince
According to Prince’s publicist Rick Miramontez, the Broadway icon is said to have died on Wednesday after a brief illness. Andrew Lloyd Webber has been one amongst many to speak out about the passing of Prince; thanking him and regarding him as “Not just the prince of musicals.”