Bay Street Theatre Founder Sybil Christopher Passes Away at 83


Co-founder and artistic director of Bay Street Theatre Sybil Christopher passed away on Saturday, March 9, 2013, according to an announcement by the theatre's website. She was 83. Christopher served as artistic director at Bay Street for nearly 22 years until 2012, when she stepped down.

"She was the heart and soul of Bay Street Theatre, and will not only be missed by all her friends at Bay Street Theatre but also by the entire Sag Harbor Village community," reads a statement on the website. "Our thoughts are with her family that she loved dearly."

Christopher founded Bay Street Theatre in 1991 with Steve Hamilton and Emma Walton Hamilton.

The former actress appeared in Harvey in the West End and in Shakespeare's Histories for the Festival of Britain in Stratford-Upon-Avon, as well as the 1954 BBC recording of Under Milk Wood by Dylan Thomas with Richard Burton, Hugh Griffith and Rachel Roberts.

Christopher met her husband, actor Richard Burton, while filming for The Last Days of Dolywyn. They were married in 1948 and had two children, actress Kate Burton and Jessica Burton, before getting divorced in 1963 after Richard's affair with star Elizabeth Taylor. Christopher later remarried in 1966 to singer Jordan Christopher, who passed away in 1996.

Christopher is also a founder of the New Theatre on 54th Street in New York, and the nightclub Arthur, which she opened with Roddy McDowall and Edward Villella. It drew regulars such as Tennessee Williams, Princess Margaret, Lee Remick, Truman Capote and more.

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