Producer Steve Fickinger passed away June 17. He was 62.
Mr. Fickinger graduated from UCLA, where he was the first recipient of the Carol Burnett Musical Award for excellence in performance. Beginning as a temp in the mail room, Mr. Fickinger worked his way up the Disney corporate ladder throughout the 1990s before becoming the Director of Creative Development for Walt Disney Feature Animation, where he oversaw the development of Mulan, Tarzan, and Lilo and Stitch. From 1992 to 2012, he was the Vice President of Creative Development for Disney Theatrical Group, where he supervised six theatrical adaptations, including Newsies, Aladdin, Aida, and The Lion King.
Mr. Fickinger spearheaded Disney Theatrical's Education and Outreach programs, including Disney Musicals in Schools, which provides material resources for the arts departments in underserved schools. He left the Disney company in 2013, launching a career as one half of FickStern Productions, alongside David I. Stern. They made their debut as a duo in 2016 as a part of the producing team for Dear Evan Hansen, which went on to win six Tony awards.
Mr. Fickinger's death was unexpected. He was in the midst of a production deal with Warner Bros. Studio at the time of his death, and was developing Live at the Crescendo Club: An Evening with Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan and Pearl Bailey, written and directed by Seret Scott.
A known philanthropist, Mr. Fickinger raised more than $15 million for The AIDS Walk, and was also a known supporter of the Los Angeles Food Mission, Meals on Wheels, and the Race to Erase MS.
He is survived by four siblings and their spouses, nieces, nephews, and nephews-in-law, and a great-nephew. A funeral will be held in Chicago and a memorial service in Los Angeles.