Broadway Veteran Walter Charles Dies at 78 | Playbill

Obituaries Broadway Veteran Walter Charles Dies at 78

Charles made his Broadway debut in the original production of Grease.

Walter Charles and Sherri L. Edelen

Broadway veteran Walter Charles has passed away at the age of 78. His death was announced by his longtime talent agency, who shared that he passed on August 3, 2023. 

Born in 1945 in East Strousburg, Pennsylvania, Charles made his Broadway debut in the original production of Greaseas the replacement for the character Vince Fontaine. He next opened 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in the original cast. His career flourished throughout the following decade, where he appeared in the original casts of beloved and history-making Broadway musicals like Sweeney Todd, Cats, and La Cage Aux Folles.

Additional stage credits throughout the years include Aspects of Love, Kiss Me KateBig River, and The Apple Tree. His final production on Broadway was the 2011 revival of Anything Goes in the role of the Captain.

Charles also appeared onscreen a number of times; acting in several films including A Fine Mess and Prancer, and on television shows such as Law & Order and Kate and Allie. 

Charles is survived by his wife Leslie Thompson, who wrote on Facebook, "My beautiful husband and friend passed away today. The last piece of music that I played for him was The Lark Ascending by Vaughan Williams. Walter Charles is free."

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