Mark Blum, an Obie Award-successful New York stage and display screen actor whose roles ranged from hugely flawed husbands to overconfident blowhards, died on Wednesday in Manhattan. He was 69.
The actor Lee Wilkof, a close spouse and children mate, reported the result in was troubles of the coronavirus. Mr. Blum also had asthma.
Mr. Blum was an omnipresent determine in the Off Broadway entire world for decades, but his most important minute in the spotlight arrived in 1989 soon after he performed a time-touring 20th-century playwright who befriends Gustav Mahler, in the Playwrights Horizons production of Albert Innaurato’s “Gus and Al.”
Frank Rich, in his review in The New York Situations, referred to Mr. Blum’s “appealing, weary-eyed portrayal” and observed Al’s self-martyrdom as a type of “rueful hypersensitivity to the contemporary globe.”
At the Obie ceremony, Mr. Blum was specified one of 13 uncategorized Off Broadway overall performance awards for that year. His fellow winners incorporated Nancy Marchand and Fyvush Finkel.
He experienced a notable Broadway job as perfectly, appearing in 9 productions about three and a 50 percent a long time. He made his Broadway debut as a specially flexible theater specialist — taking part in an unnamed Venetian (one of 4), understudying two roles and acting as assistant phase supervisor in “The Merchant” (1977), established in 16th-century Venice and impressed by a sure Shakespearean vintage.
Other Broadway roles integrated Eddie, the younger primary character’s recently widowed and financial debt-ridden father, in Neil Simon’s “Lost in Yonkers” (1991), with Irene Really worth Spalding Gray’s campaign supervisor in “Gore Vidal’s The Finest Man” (2000), a function he reprised as a alternative in the 2012 revival Leo Herman, a.k.a. Chuckles the Chipmunk, the detestable host of a children’s tv present, in “A Thousand Clowns” (2001) and Juror No. 1, the reasonable foreman, in “Twelve Indignant Men” (2004).
At his loss of life, he was an acting teacher at HB Studio in New York, exactly where he headed the yearlong core instruction method named for Uta Hagen, and a faculty member at Brooklyn University.
“What is the journey of self-discovery that you start off on that enables you to join your personal curiosity about who you are with your curiosity about what the human race is — and how to channel that into the get the job done?”
Mark Jeffrey Blum was born on Might 14, 1950, in Newark, to Morton Joseph Blum, an insurance plan executive, and Lorraine Pearl (Fink) Blum.
Expanding up in close by Maplewood, N.J., Mark assumed casually about getting a lawyer or an engineer he was also a little something of a math prodigy. So when he entered the University of Pennsylvania, it was as a normal liberal arts pupil with no particular objective. But he soon identified his calling.
“Theater someway enabled me to carry all the items that mattered into concentrate,” Mr. Blum advised The New York Times in 1980. There was no formal theater system at Penn, but the administration helped him shape a curriculum, and he graduated as a theater main in 1972.
Two decades later, he been given a learn of great arts degree from the College of Minnesota in a specific program in association with the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis.
He created his New York stage debut as a publish office clerk in a 1976 production of “The Cherry Orchard” at a theater on West 23rd Road.
While continuing to work onstage, he created his element film debut in “Lovesick” (1983), Marshall Brickman’s passionate comedy about an unfaithful psychiatrist, and his tv series debut as a physician on “St. Elsewhere” in 1984.
He appeared in just about 30 films, including “Desperately Trying to find Susan” (1985), as a married very hot-tub salesman “Crocodile Dundee” (1986) and “Shattered Glass” (2003). His most recent, “The Pleasure of Your Presence,” a romantic comedy about a wedding in the Hamptons, has been completed but not still scheduled for launch.
More than the many years he appeared on dozens of key-time collection — amid them “Miami Vice,” “Roseanne,” “Frasier” and 3 demonstrates in the “Law & Order” franchise — and he remained active into 2020. He appeared in 30 episodes of the Amazon collection “Mozart in the Jungle” as Union Bob, a policies-obsessed symphony orchestra piccolo player. His most recent roles were on the drama sequence “You,” as a mysterious bookstore operator and stroke target “Succession” (2018-19) and “Billions,” in an episode scheduled to air in Could.
His remaining Broadway visual appeal was in 2013 in “The Assembled Get-togethers,” as Judith Light’s combative Upper West Side spouse. His past Off Broadway productions were being “Amy and the Orphans” (2018), at the Laura Pels Theater, in which he performed an autistic woman’s typically oblivious brother and “Fern Hill,” a comedian drama about retirement-age baby boomers looking at a commune, at 59E59 Theaters in September.
He is survived by his wife, the actress Janet Zarish his mom and his sister, Nancy Blum Litt.
Mr. Blum generally had a special sensation for theater environments over and above Broadway. When he was showing in Amy Herzog’s “After the Revolution” at the Williamstown Theater Pageant in Massachusetts in 2010, he defined in a video clip job interview that the area produced him experience component of an inventive community “but also can make you come to feel enveloped by it in a way that supports you and elevates you.”
He included, “It’s like a minimal cushion beneath to avoid us from crashing to the earth.”