The marquees of all Broadway theaters will be dimmed at 7:45 p.m. Wednesday in honor of the late Sidney Poitier, the Broadway League announced Tuesday.
Poitier, who died Jan. 6 at the age of 94, was a prolific actor, director and diplomat, and the first Black actor to win the Academy Award for Best Actor. While best known for his film career, Poitier began his career with the American Negro Theatre and appeared in three Broadway productions.
Poitier made his Broadway debut in the 1946 all-Black revival of “Lysistrata” and later originated the role of Walter Lee Younger in “A Raisin in the Sun,” for which he was Tony Award-nominated. He reprised the role in the 1961 film adaptation.
After winning his Academy Award, Poitier directed the 1968 Broadway production of “Call Me Back to Morningside Heights.” He also appeared as an actor in the 1947 play “Anna Lucasta.”
Later in life, he served as the Bahamian ambassador to Japan and to UNESCO.
A new play depicting his life and career is in development, with support from the Poitier family. Charles Randolph-Wright is writing the script and Ruben Santiago-Hudson is set to direct the work.