Michael Constantine, dad in "My Big Fat Greek Wedding", dies at 94

“I just knew I was there,” Mr. Constantine told Odyssey, an English-language magazine about Greek life, in 2011. “They might be laughing ...


“I just knew I was there,” Mr. Constantine told Odyssey, an English-language magazine about Greek life, in 2011. “They might be laughing at that prick from Pennsylvania, but I just belong. here – it’s me. “

The young M. Constantine studied theater with Howard de Silva, providing odd jobs, including night watchman and shooting barker. He became Paul Muni’s understudy by playing the inspired character of famous defense lawyer Clarence Darrow in “Inherit the Wind”, which opened on Broadway in 1955.

In “Compulsion” – a 1957 Broadway dramatization of Meyer Levin’s novel about the Leopold and Loeb murder case – Mr. Constantine took over the role of defense attorney for Frank Conroy just before the evening of opening. (Mr. Conroy withdrew after suffering a heart attack during the previews.)

“Michael Constantine gives an excellent performance as a prototype of Clarence Darrow,” Brooks Atkinson wrote in The New York Times. “He avoids sentimentality that situations could easily evoke and plays with taste, deliberation, color and intelligence.”

Mr. Constantine’s other Broadway credits include Anagnos, director of the Perkins Institute for the Blind in the original cast of “The Miracle Worker” (1959), and Dogsborough in Bertolt Brecht’s anti-fascist satire “Arturo Ui” (1963) .

Mr. Constantine’s first marriage, to actress Julianna McCarthy, ended in divorce, as did his second, to Kathleen Christopher. His survivors include two sisters: Patricia Gordon and Chris Dobbs, his agent said. A full list of survivors was not immediately available.

For all of Mr. Constantine’s credits, for all of his rave reviews, it is for a single role – and for a single prop exercised during that role – that he seems destined to be remembered.

“I can’t tell you,” he said in a 2014 interview with his hometown newspaper The Reading Eagle, “how many times I have autographed a bottle of Windex.”

Alyssa Lukpat contributed reports.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Michael Constantine, dad in "My Big Fat Greek Wedding", dies at 94
Michael Constantine, dad in "My Big Fat Greek Wedding", dies at 94
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