Pamela Blair of 'A Chorus Line' dies at 73

 July 24, 2023

Pamela Blair, who starred as Val in the original production of A Chorus Line on Broadway, died Sunday in Phoenix at age 73, Broadway World reported.

The report of her death came from friend Scott Withers, who posted on social media, "This is posted with a heavy heart. Pamela Blair has passed away. Pam was at home, surrounded by loved ones. Thank you for all of your prayers and support over the years. We will post information on when and where she will be buried tomorrow."

Blair was born in Bennington, Vermont. She came to New York City to attend the National Academy of Ballet at age 16, and hoped to meet the Beatles.

She began to get dancing roles in Broadway productions while still in school, including Michael Bennett's Promises, Promises and Seesaw and James Earl Jones' Of Mice and Men revival.

A long and busy career

Blair was invited in 1974 by Michael Bennett to participate in the workshops that led to A Chorus Line. The character she eventually played, Valerie Clark, was based partly on her life and partly on that of another actress who got several plastic surgeries in order to get roles.

In 1976, Blair and the rest of the cast won the 1976 Theatre World Award for Ensemble Performance for the show.

After a successful Broadway career, she appeared on a number of soap operas and made guest appearances on shows like Law & Order, The Cosby Show, The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd, and Sabrina, the Teenage Witch.

She was nominated for a Daytime Emmy for her work on All My Children.

She also appeared in a number of movies including Mighty Aphrodite, 21 Grams, Before and After, and Annie.

During her time on television and in movies, she lived in Hollywood, California.

A lasting legacy

She married actor and director Don Scardino in 1984, and they divorced in 1991. He directed her in A Few Good Men when they were estranged.

Later on, she moved to Phoenix and opened a Therapeutic and Myofascial Massage Studio for athletes.

There have been several revivals and national tours of the show in which Blair originated Valerie Clark, and A Chorus Line remains a staple in musical theatre.

The use of actors' real-life stories in the show made it distinct and gave performers a voice that they didn't usually have in a performance, at least up until that time.

Blair was part of pulling back the curtain to reveal the life of a dancer, and she will always be remembered for that.

" A free people [claim] their rights, as derived from the laws of nature."
Thomas Jefferson
© 2015 - 2024 Conservative Institute. All Rights Reserved.