Three-time Tony Nominee Arthur Kopit Passed Away in New York

Just one month before he turned 84, the 'Phantom' playwright is survived by his wife Leslie Garis, his sister, Susan, his three children as well as his three grandchildren.

AceShowbiz - Broadway playwright Arthur Kopit has died, aged 83. The Pulitzer Prize finalist passed away on Friday, April 2, in New York.

Kopit's career began while he was still a student at Harvard with the 1963 play "Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mamma's Hung You in the Closet and I'm Feelin' So Sad", which landed a major theater run after finding success Off Broadway.

He'll best be remembered for his 1969 Pulitzer Prize contender "Indians", which was adapted as the film "Buffalo Bill and the Indians", starring Paul Newman and directed by Robert Altman in 1976.

Kopit landed on the Pulitzer Prize finalists list for a second time in 1978 thanks to his play "Wings".

"Wings," which depicted the inner world and struggles of a stroke survivor was premiered in 1978, and reached Broadway a year later. Its central character was a woman who performed wing-walking stunts in the 1920s, but the plot itself was based on Kopit's observations of his stepfather following a stroke.

He also wrote the book for the 1982 Tony-winning musical "Nine" and "Phantom", a 1991 adaptation of Gaston Leroux's novel "The Phantom of the Opera". His other theater credits include "High Society", "End of the World", "Road to Nirvana", and "Discovery of America".

Kopit, who was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame in 2017, was also a lecturer at Wesleyan University, Yale University and New York City College. He was a member of Lark Play Development Center, and lived most recently in Manhattan. He is survived by his wife, Leslie Garis, his children Alex, Ben and Kat, his grandchildren Arthur, Beatrix and Clara, and his sister, Susan.

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