The Broadway community will pay tribute to the late Barbara Cook with its traditional light-dimming ceremony. Theatre marquees will go dark for exactly one minute August 9 at 7:45 PM. Cook died of respiratory failure, surrounded by her friends and family, at the age of 89 August 8 morning.
Cook was revered for her myriad ingénue roles on stage, including originating the roles of Marian Paroo in The Music Man (for which she won a Tony Award), Cunegonde in Candide, and Amalia in She Loves Me. Other notable Broadway triumphs included Ado Annie in Oklahoma! and both Carrie Pipperidge and Julie Jordan in Carousel.
Her last Broadway appearance was in Sondheim on Sondheim, which earned her a 2010 Tony nomination. Cook was a frequent interpreter of the composer in concert and cabaret settings, including the 1985 presentation of Follies, in which she played Sally and delivered her haunting rendition of "Losing My Mind."
“Barbara Cook was an unforgettable talent with a voice that dazzled audiences and kept them coming back over her 50-year career,” said Broadway League President Charlotte St. Martin in a statement. “With charisma, determination, and perseverance she made a remarkable contribution to theatre and inspired fans around the world. She will be greatly missed. Our thoughts are with her family, friends, and colleagues.”
Cook is survived by her son, Adam LeGrant. Earlier this year, LeGrant had announced on behalf of his mother that she had retired from performing.