Broadway to dim lights Wednesday in memory of Jean Stapleton

Broadway to dim lights Wednesday in memory of Jean Stapleton
Jean Stapleton playing Eleanor Roosevelt in a 2000 production of "Eleanor: Her Secret Journey" at the Canon Theatre in Beverly Hills. (Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times)

Broadway will dim its marquees for one minute Wednesday at 8 p.m. to honor the memory of stage and screen star Jean Stapleton, the Broadway League said.

Stapleton died Friday in New York at age 90.


Best known for playing the offbeat (and off-key) Edith Bunker in the '70s hit "All in the Family," Stapleton had a lengthy stage resume before becoming a sitcom star.

The actress began her career in the 1940s as a summer stock theater and went on to star in the original Broadway productions of "Bells Are Ringing" and "Funny Girl" alongside Barbara Streisand.

Stapleton's other Broadway credits include "Damn Yankees" and "Rhinoceros."

"The theater is where Jean Stapleton started ... [and] the Broadway community claims her as one of our family," Charlotte St. Martin, executive director of the Broadway League, said in a statement. "The range of her talent was also evident in that she could triumph in both musical comedies and serious dramas. She will be missed."

Stapleton starred in several Los Angeles shows, including a 1974 production of "The Time of the Cuckoo" at the Ahmanson Theatre.

In an interview with the Los Angeles Times ahead of the play's opening, the actress said, "'Cuckoo' has the same excitement for me as would returning to Broadway .... I may play the lead, but I can't consider myself a star."