Big Al

When I was but a wee sprout, I spent a few years working at a daily newspaper. One of the editors once said to me that if I really wanted to learn about history, I should read the obituaries in the New York Times every day.

Today’s New York Times obituaries contain plenty of history – of the New York Times itself, and of the New York theatre scene – in the form of the obituary of caricaturist Al Hirschfeld, who died at 99.

His passing marks what seems to be the end of an era. His career spanned most of the last century and the beginning of this one. I can only pray that a retrospective of his work will remind producers, performers and audiences alike that there is so much more to theatre than Disney and Andrew Lloyd Webber.