Lars Hansen, Former Executive Director of Pasadena Playhouse, Dies at 60

Obituaries   Lars Hansen, Former Executive Director of Pasadena Playhouse, Dies at 60
 
Lars Hansen, whose career in arts management included a decade-long turn as executive director of Pasadena Playhouse, died Jan. 31 of complications from liver cancer. He was 60.

The many culture posts he held during his career included: executive director of the office of cultural relations for the University of Southern California (2001-2004); general manager for the presentation of the Bolshoi Ballet at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in 2000; executive director for California Music Theatre in Pasadena; business manager for Playwrights Horizons in New York City; and administrative director of American Music Theatre Festival in Philadelphia. He also taught theatre management courses at the University of Southern California.

From 1977 to 1982, Mr. Hansen served as musical director and later executive director of the Long Beach Civic Light Opera, which he shepherded from a community organization to a professional resident theatre under an agreement with Actors' Equity Association.

From 1988 to 1999, he was at the Pasadena Playhouse, which recently announced that it will close due to debt on Feb. 7. During Mr. Hansen's tenure, however, season subscriptions reached a high of 23,000 and annual attendance exceeded 200,000.

Lars Henry Hansen was born on July 11, 1949, in Long Beach, CA. He received a bachelor of arts degree from California State University, Long Beach and did graduate studies in Secondary Education Administration at CSULB and University of California, Irvine.

Mr. Hansen married his partner, attorney Anthony John Amendola, in a state-sanctioned ceremony on Sept. 26, 2008, the 20th anniversary of their relationship. Amendola survives him, as does his brother Ralph J. Hansen. A memorial celebration will be held later in the Los Angeles area. In lieu of flowers, tax deductible donations may be made in the memory of Lars Hansen to The Palm Springs Rotary Foundation, P.O. Box 171, Palm Springs, CA 92263.

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