Ann Crumb, a Media native and Tony Award-nominated actress who originated the role of Rose Vibert in Andrew Lloyd Webber's "Aspects of Love" and who often returned to perform at the Media Theatre, has died. She was 69.
Crumb died Thursday from ovarian cancer at her parents' home in Media, according to her vocal coach, Bill Schuman.
Crumb was the daughter of composer George Crumb, winner of the 1968 Pulitzer Prize for Music. She received undergraduate and graduate degrees in music from the University of Michigan and studied violin. She ended her violin career after she injured her right arm in a fall from a horse.
She then planned for a career in clinical medicine and was working as a clinician in Philadelphia when she took a job in the national tour of "El Grande de Coca Cola" and switched to theater.
Crumb made her Broadway debut in the original cast of "Les Miserables" in 1987, appeared in "Chess" the following year, then starred in "Aspects of Love" opposite Michael Ball in London's West End in 1989 and on Broadway in 1990.
She received a Tony nomination for the title role in the musical adaptation of Leo Tolstoy's "Anna Karenina" by Daniel Levine and Peter Kellogg, which ran for 18 previews and 46 performances in 1992.
Crumb starred opposite John Cullum in a U.S. tour of "Man of La Mancha" in 1995. Her television appearances included "Law & Order," ''Law & Order: Criminal Intent" and "One Life to Live."
Also known as a classical and jazz singer, Crumb's rendition of "Three Early Songs" was on the Grammy Award-winning "George Crumb's 70th Birthday Album."
Crumb delighted in returning to her home town, especially to appear on the Media Theatre stage, which she considered something of a second home, and where she performed in "Sunset Boulevard," "Spamalot," "Master Class," "Wings" and "Souvenir.'"
A memorial for Crumb, one of Media's brightest stars, will be held at The Media Theatre as per her family's request on Sunday Dec. 29 with a 5 p.m. reception and a 6 p.m. on-stage service.
"Ann Crumb was an actress of immense talent and grace." said Jesse Cline, Media Theatre artistic director. "She was a gift to The Media Theatre."
Crumb appeared on almost every regional theatre stage in the Philadelphia region and recently won a Best Actress Award for her work in 'Sunset Boulevard' in Colorado. She is the recipient of a Barrymore Award and an Arts Recognition Award.
She recently took part in the special celebration held for her father's 90th birthday celebration.
Crumb was a member of the Penncrest High School Class of 1968, and part of the first group Inducted into our Rose Tree Media Distinguished Alumni Hall of Fame. She was known by her classmates as one of the most brilliant, funny, modest most caring people you could meet. She had a passion for animal rights and is known to have rescued and saved countless dogs.
She is survived by her father; her mother, Elizabeth Crumb, a violinist; and brothers Peter and David, the latter a composer.