T. Scott Cunningham

T. Scott Cunningham, a simultaneously zany and empathetic performer of the Off-Broadway stage whose short, but productive career saw him originate roles in plays by Nicky Silver and Douglas Carter Beane, died at NYU Medical Center in New York City on June 20, 2009, from complications due to pneumonia and Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome, according to Sam Rudy, a spokesperson for The Vineyard Theatre. He was 47. Mr. Cunningham, of medium height and build, was equipped with a soft, malleable face and large brown eyes which, depending on the role or the scene, could express a soulful sorrowfulness, a pained yearning or a verging sense of panic. Equally adept at drama and comedy (and often embodying both at the same time), he first came to critics' attention as the lead of Silver's break-out play Pterodactyls at the Vineyard Theatre Off-Broadway. In it, he played the sanest member of a Philadelphia clan sliding into an advanced state of dysfunction, and would, professor-like, periodically lecture to the audience, comparing his family to long-extinct dinosaurs. Soon after, he starred at Playwrights Horizons in another Silver play, Fit to Be Tied. His manically lovelorn character kidnaps a beautiful young man playing an angel in the Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular, simply because he wants someone around the house. One critic commented that Mr. Cunningham's eyes seemed to spin like pinwheels during the opening monologue.

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  • Also known as: Timothy Scott Cunningham
  • Born: 1962 in Los Angeles, California
  • Death: Jun 26, 2009 in New York, New York