Obituaries

Talent Agent Joel Carlton Dies at 52

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Talent Agent Joel Carlton Dies at 52

BroadwayWorld is saddened to report that talent agent Joel R. Carlton, 52, passed away on February 12, 2020 in New York City. He lived with glioblastoma multiforme for two and a half years.

Born on August 10, 1967 in Kansas City, Missouri, Joel was the son of Donald Rayford and Joan Lodema Carlton.
Joel graduated with a BFA in musical theatre from Webster University in 1989. He began his professional career as an actor, working at many prestigious regional theaters (including Old Globe, Seattle Rep, Goodspeed, Walnut Street, Geva, Kansas City Rep and North Shore) and Off-Broadway (Forbidden Broadway, JEFFREY, IMPERFECT CHEMISTRY). Joel was an involved member of Actors' Equity Association, serving as a Councilor on the elected National Council from 2000 to 2004, and later returning to hold a position on staff as Business Representative.

He retired from performing in 2002, and began a two-year stint in casting. Working with such established entities as Mark Simon Casting, The Araca Group, and Gayle Seay of Wojcik|Seay Casting, Joel assisted in the casting endeavors for Broadway, Off-Broadway, regional and stock productions, as well as several music videos and commercials.

In 2006, aspiring to include his vast experience and insight from these various facets of the industry, Joel embarked on what would become a long and successful career as a talent agent. He worked at both DGRW and Nicolosi & Co., and in 2012, co-founded Carlton, Goddard and Freer Talent (CGF Talent). Fair, compassionate, uniquely intuitive, nurturing and remarkably informed were some of the many attributes that he brought to his work as an agent. Joel invested considerable time and personal care in his clients, taking deep pride in their successes. He represented a formidable roster of stage and screen actors including Tony, Emmy, and Academy Award nominees and winners, and helped shepherd many performers to their Broadway debuts.

Joel lived a life of appreciation for good humor and human connection. He was known for his keen ability of expression and urbane vocabulary, deploying the occasional uncommon polysyllabic word in casual conversation - not to impress, rather to convey precisely what he meant. He had an enduring affection for the NY Mets, KC Chiefs, Italian opera, red wine, and good coffee. A long list of feline companions - both his and others' - knew him best as the cat whisperer, with his uncanny ability to understand and gain the trust of even the most aloof and suspicious among them. Joel seized opportunities to pause and appreciate the beauty of life, and wasn't afraid of shedding a tear at such moments.

Joel is survived by his partner, Jazmin Gorsline; his father, Don; sister, Rachel; and brother, Brendan (Shannon). He was predeceased by his mother, Joan.

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