Paul B. Berkowsky, 66, a Tony Award-nominated producer and longtime manager of many Broadway, Off-Broadway and touring shows, died of complications from leukemia Oct. 24 at NYU Hospital. A memorial service will be held for him Nov. 16, 5 PM, at the Lucille Lortel Theatre on Christopher Street.
His Johnny Burke revue, Swinging on a Star, was nominated for Best Musical Tony Award in 1996. He also produced Broadway's Shimada, starring Ben Gazzara, Ellen Burstyn, Estelle Parsons and Mako. Other productions included Medal of Honor Rag with Howard Rollins (and later Jose Ferrer and Clifton Davis), andSo Long on Lonely Street with producer Cheryl Crawford.
Following an Army stint (as an Entertainment specialist) in Korea in the 1950s, Mr. Berkowsky served as general manager for Theatre de Lys for 12 years, just as the modern Off-Broadway movement was coming to maturity. He was also a manager for more than two dozen productions at the Phoenix Theatre, including Once Upon a Mattress and Oh Dad, Poor Dad.
Among the more than 100 New York or touring shows he managed were Molly, Les Blancs, Yentl, Happy Birthday Wanda June, Dames at Sea, Colette, Berlin to Broadway with Kurt Weill, Slaveship, The Old Glory, What the Wine Sellers Buy, and more.
Mr. Berkowsky founded the School Theatre Ticket Program in New York City. He and his wife, Sheala, ran STTP, allowing millions of young people and educators access to low-priced theatre tickets. Mr. Berkowsky, a graduate of Hobart College and Yale Drama School, is survived by wife of 38 years, Sheala, of North Caldwell, NJ., and St. John, USVI; daughter, Pamela and son-in law Adam Shapiro of Alexandria, VA.; and son Kevin and daughter-in-law Gwen and granddaughters Rachel and Alyssa of Stoughton, MA.
-- By Kenneth Jones