Memorial Scholarship Fund Set Up for Joshua Park, Broadway's Tom Sawyer, Who Died at 38

News   Memorial Scholarship Fund Set Up for Joshua Park, Broadway's Tom Sawyer, Who Died at 38
 
Joshua Park, the young actor who took on the title role in the short-lived Broadway musical The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, died Aug. 30 at age 38. His family, who said Park died of pancreatic cancer, is asking that donations be sent in his name to the Yury Belov Scholarship Fund, named for one of Park's teachers at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.

Joshua Park in <i>A Christmas Memory</i>
Joshua Park in A Christmas Memory Photo by Mark Kitaoka

Park's cousin, Aaron Mitchum, said checks can be sent to the UNCSA Foundation, Inc. at 1533 S. Main Street, Winston-Salem, NC, 27127 and marked “Yury Belov Scholarship in memory of Joshua Park” in the memo line.

For online gifts: Go to UNCSA.thankyou4caring.org/pages/donate and pick “other” in the designation box. Another box will open up, and in that type in "Yury Belov Scholarship." 

Mitchum said that Belov "was one of our beloved teachers who passed this summer also and in lieu of flowers, gifts... we'd like to ask that a donation in ANY amount be made in Josh's memory. The School of the Arts and our family there meant the world to Josh." @googlemail.com>

Park is survived by his mother Beverly Miller, his sister Priscilla Park Simmons, and other extended family in  Marshville, NC. 

Park's step-mother, Darlene Perez, wrote, "My step-son, Joshua Park, left us today after a short but devastating illness. He will be missed by all of us fortunate enough to have shared his life. Talented, witty and caring. I'll miss our long deep conversations. Rest easy my friend." At age 23, Park starred opposite Kristen Bell, Linda Purl and Jim Poulos in the April 2001 Broadway musical adapted from Mark Twain's classic novel. The show ran only 21 performances. He won a Theatre World Award that spring for outstanding Broadway debut.

Park worked for a time closely with the Off-Broadway troupe the Irish Repertory Theatre, appearing in the original musical The Streets of New York in late 2001 and in its holiday show, A Celtic Christmas, in December 2002.

Also in 2002 he played the title role in the New York premiere of an Australian musical Prodigal at the York Theatre Company, in a troupe that included future stars Christian Borle, Kerry Butler and Alison Fraser. They can all be heard on the original cast album, which was released on JAY Records.

Afterward Park worked mainly in TV and films, though he returned to the stage in 2006 to play the title role in Goodspeed Opera House's revival of Pippin, opposite Monkees and Aida veteran Micky Dolenz as Charlemagne. The production later toured.

Check out Playbill.com's photo features about Park's stage career:

PHOTO CALL: On the Streets: IRT Cast Opens New Musical Nov. 18

PHOTO CALL: Old and New: Park, Parker and Freeman Win Theatre World Awards

PHOTO CALL: 45th Street Becomes Tom Sawyer Way

PHOTO CALL: Tom Sawyer's Park and Bell, While Lost, Find Each Other 

On the B'way Record 2: Young Stars of Tom Sawyer Sing for Sampler 

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