Photo Tribute: Remembering Bea Arthur


Stage and Screen star Beatrice (Bea) Arthur passed away today, Saturday, April 25 at age 86. Arthur died peacefully at her Los Angeles home with her family at her side, family spokesman Dan Watt said. She had cancer, Watt said, declining to give further details.

To remember the acclaimed Arthur, BWW Photographer Walter McBride has assembled a collection of his favorite photos that he was honored to be able to take of the beloved stage and screen actress.

Beatrice 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.

Beatrice Arthur gained fame as Maude Findlay on CBS' All in the Family, and subsequently a television show of her own, popular sitcom Maude, which ran from 1972-1978.

Arthur is most famous for her role as Dorothy on NBC's The Golden Girls. The hit show ran from 1985-1992. Over the course of her career, Arthur received 10 Emmy Award nominations, with 2 wins; 1977 and 1988's Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series.

Bea Arthur is survived by two sons, Matthew and Daniel, and two granddaughters. No funeral services are planned.

Photos by Walter McBride/Retna Ltd.

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Walter McBride As a 14 year old youth, Walter was transfixed by his first Broadway Show, the original production of 'GREASE'. His Journey to celebrity photojournalism began that fateful night. Meeting, photographing and getting to know the cast inspired him to spend his professional life doing what he loved. Walter moved to Manhattan and for a leading role as a Photographer & Photo Researcher. Currently headlining in New Jersey with his partner Richard and family members Dali (Jack Russell) & Gala (Schnoodle). Recently he made his Broadway debut sharing the stage with Hugh Jackman in 'Hugh Jackman on Broadway' as well as receiving the Actors' Equity Association Gypsy Spirit Award. Walter McBride Photography is syndicated worldwide by Corbis/AP.