Lisa Jalowetz Aronson, Designer and Wife of Boris Aronson, Dies at 93

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16 May 2013

Lisa Jalowetz Aronson, who, as assistant to her husband, the legendary scenic designer Boris Aronson, played a role in some of the most famous stage productions of the 20th century, died of respiratory failure on April 18 at her home in Nyack. She was 93.



Mrs. Aronson assisted her husband on such iconic shows as Detective Story, The Country Girl, I Am A Camera, The Crucible, Bus Stop, J.B., Fiddler on the Roof, Follies and A Little Night Music.

She was born April 18, 1920, in Prague into an artistic home. Her father, the conductor Heinrich Jalowetz, was a close associate of members of the second Vienna school including Arnold Schoenberg, Anton Webern, and Alban Berg, and he conducted several of the premieres of their music. Heinrich was brought to America by a patron of Schoenberg's and headed the music department at Black Mountain College, which Lisa attended after she managed to escape from Nazi-controlled Vienna, where she was studying art at a high school.

After graduating from Black Mountain, Lisa Jalowetz moved to New York. There, she won work sketching theatre scenes for newspapers. She later became an assistant to such set designers such as Jo Mielziner (working on Carousel). She and Boris Aronson married in 1945. Thereafter, she worked only in conjunction with him.

Boris Aronson died in 1980.

She is survived by her son, Marc, daughter-in-law Marina Budhos, and two grandsons, Sasha and Raphael.