Hirschfeld, The New York Times illustrator who died Jan. 20, 2003, at age 99, was known for his rendering of Broadway shows and stars. In the early 1970s, Hirschfeld was chosen to commemorate a series of Pulitzer Prize-winning plays. The 10 works on display will include Sidney S. Kingsley's Men in White (1933), George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart's You Can't Take It With You (1936), Robert Sherwood's Abe Lincoln in Illinois (1938), Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire (1947) and Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman (1949). All of the drawings — donated to the Library's Billy Rose Theatre Collection by the late Harold Steinberg — are signed by the artist and incorporate Hirschfeld's signature tribute to his daughter, Nina (her name in hidden within the black-pen lines).
Hirschfeld will also be honored by the theatre community as the Martin Beck Theatre (at 302 West 45 Street) will be renamed the Al Hirschfeld Theatre, June 23. Jerry Zaks will direct a special performance featuring some of Broadway's biggest celebrities as part of the renaming ceremony.
The "Centennial Salute to Al Hirschfeld" show will take place in the Plaza Lobby of The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center at 40 Lincoln Center Plaza. Admission is free. For more information, call (212) 870-1630 or visit the Library's website at www.nypl.org.