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Listen: RENT Original Cast Members and More Pay Tribute to Jonathan Larson

Larson, who passed away on this day in 1996, is also the composer behind tick, tick...BOOM!, Superbia, and more.

In a new segment from NPR, members of the original RENT family celebrate the life and career of Jonathan Larson, who tragically passed away on this day in 1996.

Below, hear from original cast members Anthony Rapp, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Wilson Jermaine Heredia, director Michael Greif and more about the creation of the musical, the aftermath of Jon's passing, and the show's incredible legacy.

Jonathan Larson received the 1996 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for RENT. He also won the 1996 Tony Award for Best Musical and the 1994 Richard Rodgers Award for RENT and twice received The Gilman & Gonzales-Falla Theatre Foundation's Comendation Award.

In 1989 he was granted the Stephen Sondheim Award from American Music Theatre Festival, where he contributed to the musical "Sitting on the Edge of the Future". In 1988 he won the Richard Rodgers Development Grant for his rock musical "Superbia", which was staged at Playwrights Horizon. He composed the score for the musical "J.P. Morgan Saves the Nation", which was presented by En Garde Arts in 1995. Mr. Larson performed his rock monologue "tick, tick... BOOM!" at Second Stage Theatre.

The Village Gate and New York Theatre Workshop. In addition to scoring and song writing for "Sesame Street", he created music for a number of children's book-cassettes, including Steven Spielberg's "An American Tail" and "Land Before Time". Other film scores include work for Rolling Stones magazine publisher Jann Wenner. He conceived, directed and wrote four original songs for "Away We Go!", a musical video for children.

RENT, his rock opera based on "La Boheme", had its world premiere on February 13, 1996 at New York Theatre Workshop. Mr. Larson died unexpectedly of an aortic aneurysm on January 25, 1996, ten days before his 36th birthday.

In 2005, RENT was adapted for the big screen in a film featuring the original Broadway cast and directed by Chris Columbus. The film adaptation of Jonathan's musical tick, tick...BOOM!, directed by Lin-Manuel Miranda, began streaming on Netflix in 2021.

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