Actors' Equity exec Patrick Quinn dies


Patrick Quinn, a Broadway, television and film actor who was recently appointed executive director of Actors' Equity Assn. after serving as its president, died early Sunday of a massive coronary at his summer home in the Pocono Mountains in Pennsylvania. He was 56.

Quinn recently resigned as president of Actors' Equity to take its top staff position, replacing the group's long-standing exec director Alan Eisenberg effective Oct. 5.

The duties of president were temporarily assumed by first vp Mark Zimmerman, with Actors' Equity Council scheduled to begin a process for nominating and electing a president at a meeting set for Tuesday. That meeting still will be held, and an announcement on staff leadership is likely afterward, said Maria Somma, a spokeswoman for the 45,000-member organization.

Quinn has been involved with the council for 30 years and as president of New York-based Actors' Equity since 2000 was credited with leading membership through challenges including the Sept. 11 attacks and the theater community's efforts to help rebuild the city. He also guided the organization through the Local 802 musicians Broadway strike in 2003 and Equity's production contract negotiations last year, which concluded with a pact to run through June 2008.

A native of Philadelphia, Quinn began his Equity career in 1970. He made his Broadway debut in a revival of "Fiddler on the Roof" with Zero Mostel and boasted 10 other Broadway credits, including "A Class Act," "Beauty and the Beast" and the revival of "The Sound of Music."

Most recently, he appeared in the Cape Playhouse production of "Sylvia" in Dennis, Mass.