Stuart Thompson, a six-time Tony-winning theatrical producer and manager who worked on over 70 Broadway and West End productions, passed away August 17 from complications from esophageal cancer. He was 62-years-old and is survived by his husband Joe Baker.
“In this very small community, Stuart was always a huge figure,” commented Scott Rudin and Anne Garefino, who produced The Book of Mormon with him. “He was a wonderful partner, a beloved colleague, and a profoundly loyal friend. Stuart will be missed by all of us lucky to have known him and worked side by side with him for years. Both of us send our love to Stuart’s husband, Joe Baker. For those who spent considerable years in Stuart’s orbit, the phrase ‘Stuart and Joe’ always meant something unique and rare and funny and enormously pleasurable.”
The Broadway League has announced that Broadway marquees will dim their lights in memory of the prolific producer and general manager on August 22 at 6:45 PM for one minute.
Thompson moved to New York City from Australia in 1980 to study arts administration. After working at the Kennedy Center with the American National Theatre, he began his career in theatrical management. Thompson’s first Broadway assignment as a general manager was on Aaron Sorkin’s A Few Good Men at the Music Box Theatre in 1989, followed by Tru with Robert Morse at the Booth Theatre the same season.
In 1993 Thompson launched Stuart Thompson Productions with Blood Brothers on Broadway. General manager David Turner joined the company in 2008, and in 2015, Thompson teamed with Turner to form Thompson Turner Productions.
Most recently, Stuart Thompson Productions is a producer of the new musical Mean Girls. His producer partner, Lorne Michaels issued the following statement: “A true gentleman and a joy to work with. He led Tina Fey and I through the process of developing our show. We look forward to presenting Mean Girls in both Washington DC and New York to the high standard that Stuart has set for us.”
Thompson began his producing career on Broadway with David Mamet’s The Old Neighborhood in 1997 and went on to co-produce Art, The Chairs, Not About Nightingales, The Play What I Wrote, The Retreat From Moscow, On Golden Pond and the three longest running plays on Broadway of the last 25 years: The Tale of the Allergist’s Wife, Proof (2001 Pulitzer Prize for Drama) and The Curious Incident of Dog in the Night-Time.
His most recent Broadway credits include Sweat (2017 Pulitzer Prize for Drama), John Guare’s Six Degrees of Separation, The Present, King Charles III, No Man’s Land / Waiting for Godot, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (2013), Death of a Salesman (2012), Jerusalem, The Motherf**ker With the Hat, A View From the Bridge (2010), God of Carnage, and Exit the King. He also produced No Man’s Land and King Charles III in London’s West End.
He also produced The Book of Mormon on which he serves as executive producer for the U.S. companies and a co-Producer of the West End and Australian productions.
Thompson is also survived by his brother Graham Thompson and sister in law Nicole Thompson and niece Lucy Thompson; sister in law Paula Baker and brother in law Ben Fournier; nephews Joey Fournier, Beau Fournier and Drew Fournier; father in law Joe Baker Jr and mother in law Joyce Baker; cousin Margot McCowage and family .
Donations can be made to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, on which he was on the Board of Directors, and the Medicare Rights Center. A memorial service will be planned for a future date.