Washington [US], November 29 (ANI): Geoffrey Johnson, the casting director for 'Cats' and 'Les Miserables', recently died at the age of 91 due to respiratory failure at Henry J. Carter Hospital in New York.
According to Deadline, Johnson's log career saw him appear on Broadway as an actor. He also worked with David Merrick as a stage manager and casting director and served as Noel Coward's US representative.
Born in New York City on June 23, 1930, and raised in Larchmont NY, he received a BA from the University of Pennsylvania and an MFA from the Yale School of Drama.
From there, he worked as an actor, appearing in 'Saint Joan' on Broadway in 1956. He was also the stage manager of several Broadway shows including 'Cactus Flower' and 'I Do, I Do'.
His work as a stage manager led him to Noel Coward, with whom he worked on the Broadway production of 'Sail Away'. The relationship continued after that, with Johnson serving as Coward's US representative until the actor's death in 1973.
After working with David Merrick as a stage manager and casting director, he formed Johnson-Liff Casting in 1975 with business partner Vincent Liff and fellow casting directors Linda Otto and Geri Windsor.
In 2003, Johnson and Vincent Liff were awarded a Tony Award for Excellence in Theatre, as well as the Hoyt Bowers Award and several Artios Awards from the Casting Society of America.
Johnson continued to be an active member of the theater community after the Johnson-Liff office closed in 2002. He served on the Tony nomination committee for several years, and was a trustee of the Noel Coward Foundation and the Life President of the Noel Coward Archive Trust.
In 2016, he established the Geoffrey Ashton Johnson/ Noel Coward Scholarship at the Yale School of Drama to honor Coward's contribution to the art form and his legacy as playwright and performer.
He is survived by his niece Valerie Cortalano, nephew Bruce Johnson, great nephews Charles Cortalano, Geoffrey Cortalano, Nicholas Cortalano, Ryan Johnson and cousins and many friends in the U.S. and England. As per Deadline, a memorial service for him will be announced at a later date. (ANI)