Chuck Patterson, who helped pave the way for African-Americans on Broadway, has died. The New York Daily News reports the 68-year-old actor passed away just two days before Christmas, but the cause of death was undisclosed.
The Memphis native got his start in 1972 with roles in film and television, but it was his breakout role in the 1975 Tony-nominated production Death of a Salesman that put him on the map. His character Bernard had historically gone to White actors up until that point.
Patterson is also remembered for his role as manager Jimmy Potter in the musical drama The Five Heartbeats with Robert Townsend, Michael Wright, Leon, Harry Lennix, Tico Wells and Diahann Carroll. His other professional credits include “New York Undercover,” “Law & Order,” “The Famous Jett Jackson” and more.
The late actor made his last appearance on Broadway in the 1997 show Proposals.
He is survived by his second wife Cori Thomas and stepdaughter Natasha Newman.