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Subject: Merwin Foard, Broadway actor

Dead at 59
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Date Posted: Wednesday, March 11, 12:33:55pm


Obituary of Merwin E. Foard, Jr.

Merwin E. Foard, Jr., 59 of Miami passed away Monday March 9, 2020 in Miami, Florida. Born September 16, 1960. Services will be held in Charlotte, North Carolina. Local arrangements by Joseph A. Scarano Pines Memorial Chapel, 9000 Pines Blvd, Pembroke Pines, Florida 33024 954-438-8222

From Mark Evanier's pop culture blog "News from ME"


Merwin Foard, R.I.P. MI
Published Tuesday, March 10, 2020 at 11:50 PM

So sorry to hear of the passing at the way-too-young age of 59 of actor Merwin Foard, who I only knew from (a) seeing him on the Broadway stage and (b) a short e-mail correspondence. For a while there, every time I went to New York and made my customary trips to shows I wanted to see, Merwin Foard would be in one of them, twice as a standby who happened to go on a night I was there. He was really terrific.

The first time (I think) I saw him filling in for another actor, he was Fred Graham (i.e., the male lead) in the 1999 revival of Kiss Me, Kate, filling in for the regular star, Brian Stokes Mitchell. I'd seen Mitchell on a previous visit and liked the show so much that a few months later when I went back with my lovely friend Carolyn, I took her because I knew she'd love it. too. I was stunned by how good Mr. Foard was in the part and when I said so in an Internet forum, I got a nice thank-you e-mail from him and we wrote back and forth for a few months.

Later, I saw him fill in for Michael Cerveris in the title role for a revival of Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. As with Kiss Me, Kate, he faced the problem that most of the folks out there who'd bought tickets bought them expecting to see the usual star and felt disappointed or baited-and-switched. All standbys and understudies for stars face that but, again, Merwin was so good that everyone forgot he wasn't the person they'd paid to see. And Sweeney is one of the most difficult parts an actor can tackle.

And I saw him in other shows but missed him in some. I didn't get to see him in Show Boat, Mame, Les Miserables, Beauty and the Beast, Jekyll & Hyde, Assassins, La Cage Aux Folles, The Little Mermaid, The Addams Family, Annie or his last role, Aladdin. That's what the still of him above right is from. He also did voices for Disney features including Pocahontas, The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Mulan. Pretty impressive career there.

And the first show I saw him in might have been the 1997 revival of 1776, which was easily one of the five-or-so best Broadway productions I've ever seen. He wasn't a standby here. Night after night, he stopped the show with his performance as Richard Henry Lee. Here he is, along with David Huddleston and Michael McCormick performing his big number on (I think) Rosie O'Donnell's talk show. It was even better on the stage with the encore that got cut out for this appearance…



Merwin Foard
Gender: Male
Born: Sep 16, 1960. Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, USA
Died: Mar 2020

Aladdin (Mar 20, 2014 - Present)
Standby: Merwin Foard
Jafar - (Feb 26, 2014 - Aug 30, 2015)
Sultan - (Feb 26, 2014 - Aug 30, 2015)

Annie (Nov 08, 2012 - Jan 05, 2014)
Performer: Merwin Foard [F.D.R.]
Understudy: Merwin Foard [Oliver Warbucks]

The Addams Family (Apr 08, 2010 - Dec 31, 2011)
Standby: Merwin Foard [Gomez Addams, Mal Beineke]
Starring: Merwin Foard
Gomez Addams - Replacement (Mar 08, 2011 - Mar 20, 2011)

The Little Mermaid (Jan 10, 2008 - Aug 30, 2009)
Performer: Merwin Foard [Ensemble , Pilot]
Understudy: Merwin Foard
King Triton -
Grimsby -
Chef Louis - Replacement

Sweeney Todd (Nov 03, 2005 - Sep 03, 2006)
Standby: Merwin Foard [Sweeney Todd, Judge Turpin]

La Cage aux Folles (Dec 09, 2004 - Jun 26, 2005)
Performer: Merwin Foard [M. Renaud]
Understudy: Merwin Foard [Edouard Dindon]

Assassins (Apr 22, 2004 - Jul 18, 2004)
Performer: Merwin Foard [Ensemble, President James Garfield]
Understudy: Merwin Foard [Leon Czolgosz, Samuel Byck, Proprietor]

Oklahoma! (Mar 21, 2002 - Feb 23, 2003)
Performer: Merwin Foard
Chalmers - (Feb 23, 2002 - Jan 05, 2003)
Understudy: Merwin Foard
Jud Fry - (Feb 23, 2002 - Jan 05, 2003)
Also Starring: Merwin Foard
Jud Fry - Replacement (Jan 07, 2003 - Feb 23, 2003)

Kiss Me, Kate (Nov 18, 1999 - Dec 30, 2001)
Standby: Merwin Foard [Fred Graham / Petruchio, Harrison Howell, Petruchio]
Performer: Merwin Foard
Harrison Howell - Replacement

1776 (Aug 14, 1997 - Jun 14, 1998)
Performer: Merwin Foard [Richard Henry Lee]

Jekyll & Hyde (Apr 28, 1997 - Jan 07, 2001)
Performer: Merwin Foard
Mr. Simon Stride - Replacement

Beauty and the Beast (Apr 18, 1994 - Jul 29, 2007)
Performer: Merwin Foard [Townsperson, Enchanted Object]

Les Misérables (Mar 12, 1987 - May 18, 2003)
Performer: Merwin Foard
Innkeeper - Replacement
Drunk - Replacement
Pimp - Replacement
Jean Prouvaire - Replacement
Javert - Replacement
Understudy: Merwin Foard
Javert - Replacement

Mame (Jul 24, 1983 - Aug 28, 1983)
Performer: Merwin Foard [Bishop, Mame's Friend]
Understudy: Merwin Foard [Patrick Dennis, age 19-29]

Show Boat (Apr 24, 1983 - Jun 26, 1983)
Performer: Merwin Foard [Ensemble]

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Broadway.com obit.Wednesday, March 11, 02:41:38pm

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