Photo Blast from the Past: Bea Arthur & Patti LuPone

Welcome to's 'Photo Blast From the Past' series. Featuring some of the collected theatre gem's of BroadwayWorld's own senior photographer Walter McBride, the series will feature images from his archives of theatre and Hollywood related gems.

Today, we're featuring Bea Arthur and Patti LuPone circa 1981. Arthur made her Broadway debut as Lucy Brown in the Marc Blitzstein's 1954 adaptation of Kurt Weill's The Threepenny Opera. The following year brought appearances in Plain and Fancy and Seventh Heaven. In 1964, Arthur originated the role of Yente the Matchmaker in Fiddler on the Roof. 1966 brought Arthur the role of Vera Charles in the new Jerry Herman musical Mame. Her work on the musical brought her a Tony award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical. 2002 marked her last appearance on the stage; her solo show, Bea Arthur on Broadway.

LuPone won the Tony, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle awards for Best Actress in a Musical and the Drama League Award for Outstanding Performance of the Season for her performance as Madame Rose in the most recent Broadway production of Gypsy. Her other stage credits include her debut with the Los Angeles Opera in Weill-Brecht's Mahagonny; the world premiere of Jake Heggie's opera To Hell and Back with San Francisco's Baroque Philharmonia Orchestra; Mrs. Lovett in John Doyle's production of Sweeney Todd (Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle nominations, Drama League Award for Outstanding Contribution to Musical Theatre); the title role in Marc Blitzstein's Regina; a musical version of Lillian Hellman's The Little Foxes at the Kennedy Center; Fosca in a concert version of Passion, which was also broadcast on PBS's Live From Lincoln Center; a multi-city tour of her theatrical concert Matters of the Heart; the City Center Encores! production of Can-Can; the New York Philharmonic's productions of Candide and Sweeney Todd (New York Philharmonic debut); and performances on Broadway inMichael Frayn's Noises Off, David Mamet's The Old Neighborhood, Terrence McNally's Master Class, and in her own concert Patti LuPone On Broadway.

Photo Credit: Walter McBride

Photo Blast from the Past: Bea Arthur & Patti LuPone
Bea Arthur and Patti LuPone photographed at the Tony Awards in New York City, June 1981.

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