Robert Patrick, the prolific playwright and onetime roommate of Lanford Wilson finest identified for the drama Kennedy’s Youngsters, which starred Shirley Knight in a Tony-winning efficiency, has died. He was 85.
Patrick died in his sleep Sunday at his residence in Los Angeles, Jason Jenn, his caregiver and longtime buddy and affiliate, introduced.
Patrick bought his begin on the West Village off-off-Broadway venue Caffe Cino and labored on the La MaMa Experimental Theatre Membership, and greater than 300 productions of his performs had been staged in New York within the Nineteen Sixties.
Patrick began writing Kennedy’s Youngsters — set in a bar on New York’s Decrease East Facet on Valentine’s Day — in 1968 and completed it 4 years later. He premiered it off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizon to little consideration earlier than taking it to London, the place it performed in a pub after which the West Finish, was directed by Clive Donner and have become a sensation.
“You’ll be able to immediately see why it’s a blockbuster right here,” Clive Barnes wrote in September 1975 in The New York Times. “It has in all probability 17 issues going for it, not the least Mr. Patrick’s uncanny ear for the way in which individuals discuss and his equally uncanny skill to transmute that into the small but completely convincing site visitors of the stage.”
Kennedy’s Youngsters bowed in November 1975 on the John Golden Theatre on Broadway and ran for 72 performances via January. For her efficiency as Carla, an alcoholic who sees herself as a successor to Marilyn Monroe, Knight acquired the lone Tony of her nice profession.
The son of migrant staff, Robert Patrick O’Connor was born on Sept. 27, 1937, in Kilgore, Texas. He joined the U.S. Air Pressure however was discharged after a poem he wrote to a fellow serviceman was found, then spent a summer time as a dishwasher in Kennebunkport, Maine.
On his means again to his household in Roswell, New Mexico, Patrick stepped off a bus in New York in September 1961 and walked into Caffe Cino, then in rehearsal for a play. He remained within the metropolis, taking over odd jobs to help himself whereas turning into concerned in all features of theatrical manufacturing.
Impressed by future Pulitzer Prize winner Wilson, he wrote The Haunted Host, mentioned to be one of many earliest trendy homosexual performs, in 1964.
His résumé included Joyce Dynel, Salvation Military, Fog and Digicam Obscura, which was produced on PBS and starred Marge Champion. In 1972, the Samuel French publishing firm declared him “New York’s Most Produced Playwright.”
He wrote the e-book Untold Many years: Seven Comedies of Homosexual Romance, first revealed in 1988.
Patrick, who taught theater in highschool, moved to Los Angeles within the early Nineteen Nineties and briefly wrote opinions of grownup movies.
On his birthday in 2013, he carried out a solo present about his profession titled What Doesn’t Kill Me Makes a Nice Story Later, which featured a number of of his authentic a cappella songs. This was adopted by two extra solo evenings of largely tune, Bob Capella and New Songs for Previous Motion pictures.
Patrick created a web site with hundreds of manufacturing pictures from tons of of productions in New York and worldwide here. His theater archives relaxation with the New York Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Middle; parts have been digitized and can be found on-line.
Survivors embody his sister, Angela, aka Bunny.