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Theater officials reflect on legacy of Arthur Storch

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Theater officials in Syracuse are reflecting on the legacy of Arthur Storch, the founding producing artistic director of Syracuse Stage and former chairman of Syracuse University’s Department of Drama (1973 to 1992), who died Tuesday at the age of 87.

As the producing artistic director for Syracuse Stage, Mr. Storch directed 30 plays and supervised the production of more than 100 other shows.

“One of the traits that I most admired about Arthur was his attention to the audience. He knew that the audience was the final arbiter of the success of a play. If the audience was restless and not focused, it was not the fault of the audience. It meant that the director and actors had more work to do,” said Jim Clark, former producing director of Syracuse Stage and former chairman of Syracuse University Drama.

“Arthur Storch has left an extraordinary and vital legacy in Syracuse and this nation as an insightful and courageous pioneer of the American regional theater movement,” said Timothy Bond, producing artistic director of Syracuse Stage and SU Drama.

Mr. Storch was attracted to producing a variety of theatrical works, ranging from Shakespeare to Sam Shepard scripts. The Syracuse Stage/SU Drama theater complex was named in his honor in 1992 when he left Syracuse to embark on a free-lance directing career in New York City, where he died.

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