“He had delusions of adequacy.”
Walter Kerr was born today in Evanston, Illinois in 1913. He would have been 99.
Kerr was a mid 20th Century New York theatre critic, director and author. His sharp, witty reviews could make or break a Broadway show and he won a Pulitzer Prize for Criticism. Kerr also put his money where his mouth is– producing work for the stage as a writer and director. With his wife Jean Kerr he wrote Goldilocks, which won the 1958 Tony Award. Kerr directed the production. He also directed Touch and Go andKing of Hearts.
His books include How Not to Write a Play, Criticism and Censorship, The Theatre in Spite of Itself, and Thirty Plays Hath November.
In 1990 Broadway gave Kerr the ultimate honor. It named a theater after him. The old Ritz Theatre at 218 West 48th Street was renovated and reopened the Water Kerr Theatre. It opened to August Wilson’s The Piano Lesson and has since house six Tony Award Winning Plays.