Starting in 1967, Davidson’s artistic vision, professional connections and business savvy were indispensable in transforming L.A. from a passive backwater where theatergoers largely consumed the Broadway touring shows to a wellspring for new works that won Tony Awards and Pulitzer Prizes. He directed more than 40 plays and produced more than 300 works for the Center Theatre Group, and he relished the spotlight as L.A. theater’s most prominent public face until his retirement in 2005.
You can read a story written by Steve Julian for our predecessor, LA STAGE Times, about Davidson’s then-view on the state of theatre as an artform here. Plans for a memorial event will be announced in the coming days.
It’s safe to say that LA theatre wouldn’t be what it is today without Davidson, and he will be sorely missed.