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Howard Ashman

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NEWS
March 15, 1991
Howard Ashman, a Baltimore-area native whose songs and musicals won an Academy Award, a New York Drama Critics Award, two Grammys, two Golden Globe Awards and a British Evening Standard Award, died yesterday at a hospital in New York of complications to AIDS, according to the WPA Theatre.He was 40.Mr. Ashman, who lived in New York, wrote the lyrics for "Under the Sea" for the Disney movie "The Little Mermaid."The song won the 1989 Academy Award for Best Song, and Mr. Ashman and his collaborator, Alan Menken, won two Grammys and two Golden Globes for their work on the score for the movie.
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NEWS
By JoAnna Daemmrich and JoAnna Daemmrich,Staff Writer | June 4, 1993
At an Annapolis piano bar, they're playing the songs again that Howard Ashman taught the world to sing.Dick Gessner's Broadway Corner on Route 50 is having another AIDS benefit with a series of shows, which concludes with performances Sunday through Wednesday, featuring 35 songs by the late Baltimore-born lyricist. And this time, tickets are still available.In late February, Mr. Gessner organized his first benefit to raise money for HERO, Maryland's largest nonprofit organization helping people who have AIDS.
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FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,Theater Critic | April 18, 1993
Ariel. Beauty's Beast. Seymour, the florist's assistant in a littl shop on Skid Row, and his curvaceous heartthrob, Audrey. What do these assorted two- and three-dimensional characters have in common?One man wrote the words they sang. He was the late Howard Ashman, the Baltimore-born lyricist and director whose credits included "Aladdin," "Beauty and the Beast," "The Little Mermaid" and "Little Shop of Horrors."Tonight, some of his most famous characters -- or, more accurately, the actors who portrayed them -- will be in Baltimore to honor his memory in "A Salute to Heroes -- 10 Years of Courage Anniversary Gala."
NEWS
By JACQUES KELLY | April 21, 1993
The theater programs that carry the credit "Directed by Todd Pearthree" make a tall stack.The 39-year-old director continues his tradition of work, work and more work with his production of the 1938 musical comedy, "The Boys from Syracuse," in the Spotlighters Theatre at 817 St. Paul St. It opens April 30 and runs weekends through May 30.Todd Pearthree (pronounced pear tree) has a name to be reckoned with in Baltimore theater circles. Walter, his father, who died several years ago, appeared in many local productions.
NEWS
By JoAnna Daemmrich and JoAnna Daemmrich,Staff Writer | June 4, 1993
At an Annapolis piano bar, they're playing the songs again that Howard Ashman taught the world to sing.Dick Gessner's Broadway Corner on Route 50 is having another AIDS benefit with a series of shows, which concludes with performances Sunday through Wednesday, featuring 35 songs by the late Baltimore-born lyricist. And this time, tickets are still available.In late February, Mr. Gessner organized his first benefit to raise money for HERO, Maryland's largest nonprofit organization helping people who have AIDS.
FEATURES
By New York Times | March 15, 1991
HOWARD Ashman, an Oscar-winning lyricist and a librettist, playwright and director who wrote and staged the off-Broadway hit "Little Shop of Horrors," died yesterday at St. Vincent's Hospital in New York. He was 40.He died of AIDS, Kyle Renick, the artistic director of the WPA Theater, said.Ashman, who was born in Baltimore, was the WPA's artistic director in 1982 when he collaborated with composer Alan Menken on "Little Shop of Horrors," the tale of a timid flower store clerk who sells his soul to a man-eating plant.
FEATURES
March 29, 1992
Howard Ashman put words in the mouths of an ugly beast, a beautiful girl, a little mermaid, a man-eating plant and a teapot.Yes, a teapot. This Baltimore-born lyricist, director and producer had the magical power to animate the inanimate.The strength of his magic will be evident tomorrow night, when "Beauty and the Beast" -- the Disney animated feature on which he served as executive producer as well as lyricist -- competes for six Academy Awards, including best picture. (The other nominations are for three original songs, score and sound.
FEATURES
By Jean Marbella | February 26, 1992
Proceeds from today's five shows of "Beauty and the Beast" at the Senator Theatre will be donated to AIDS Action Baltimore in memory of Howard Ashman, its executive producer and lyricist."
FEATURES
By Michael Davis | March 29, 1992
TEARS SPILLED FROM Shirley Gershman's eyes and her voice became thick and husky. But she continued talking to the audience of eighth-grade Sunday school students, and they rode through the emotional storm with her."Howard was just like you," she tells them, "and just like you, he was not invincible. He got AIDS. But you do not have to get it. You hold your future in your hands."Acquired immune deficiency syndrome took her brilliant starburst of a son, Howard Ashman, and Shirley Gershman has responded to tragedy with a vow to spare other mothers the anguish she has endured.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,Theater Critic | March 31, 1992
"It's hard to put into the words the feelings," Shirley Gershman, mother of the late Howard Ashman -- Baltimore-born lyricist and executive producer of "Beauty and the Beast" -- said from Los Angeles late last night after the Disney animated feature won Oscars for best song and score.Ashman, who died of AIDS at age 40 a little more than a year ago, was represented at the awards by his mother, Shirley Gershman; his sister, Sarah Gillespie, a vice president of the United Media syndicate; his agent, Esther Sherman; and his longtime companion William Lauch, a New York architect.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,Theater Critic | April 18, 1993
Ariel. Beauty's Beast. Seymour, the florist's assistant in a littl shop on Skid Row, and his curvaceous heartthrob, Audrey. What do these assorted two- and three-dimensional characters have in common?One man wrote the words they sang. He was the late Howard Ashman, the Baltimore-born lyricist and director whose credits included "Aladdin," "Beauty and the Beast," "The Little Mermaid" and "Little Shop of Horrors."Tonight, some of his most famous characters -- or, more accurately, the actors who portrayed them -- will be in Baltimore to honor his memory in "A Salute to Heroes -- 10 Years of Courage Anniversary Gala."
ENTERTAINMENT
By Scott Hettrick | October 30, 1992
BEAUTY AND THE BEAST(Walt Disney Home Video, 1991)The most poignant moment in "Beauty and the Beast" comes on the final frame of film following the end credits:"To our friend, Howard, who gave a mermaid her voice and a beast his soul, we will be forever grateful. Howard Ashman (1950-1991)"That should put a lump in the throat of anyone who was swept into the magical musical worlds of "The Little Mermaid," "Beauty and the Beast" and "The Little Shop of Horrors," all created by the songwriting team of Ashman and Alan Menken.
NEWS
By Arthur Hirsch and Arthur Hirsch,Staff Writer | September 2, 1992
ANNAPOLIS -- The Oscar that Howard Ashman did not live to claim stood on the white grand piano at Dick Gessner's Broadway Corner all Saturday night long.It stood there until closing time, until the last of the gifted amateurs and the local dinner theater pros had taken a turn singing in the spotlights. They sang songs from Broadway and movies in the presence of Oscar, glossy totem of all their ambitions.During the break, they gathered around it, close enough to see their breath fog the sheen.
FEATURES
By Stephen Hunter and Stephen Hunter,Film Critic | March 31, 1992
An article on the Academy Awards in yesterday's Today section incorrectly attributed a quote from an Oscar acceptance speech to Alan Menken, Howard Ashman's collaborator. In fact, the quote was from William Lauch, the longtime companion of the late Mr. Ashman.The Sun regrets the error."The Silence of the Lambs" and its beauty and its beast dominated last night's 64th Annual Academy Awards, winning five Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Actress, Best Actor and Best Director."Silence's" Jonathan Demme won Best Director for the job he did in shepherding to the screen Thomas Harris's spooky novel of a young FBI agent's hunt for a brutal psychotic killer, as guided by still another, and more frightening, psychotic killer.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,Theater Critic | March 31, 1992
"It's hard to put into the words the feelings," Shirley Gershman, mother of the late Howard Ashman -- Baltimore-born lyricist and executive producer of "Beauty and the Beast" -- said from Los Angeles late last night after the Disney animated feature won Oscars for best song and score.Ashman, who died of AIDS at age 40 a little more than a year ago, was represented at the awards by his mother, Shirley Gershman; his sister, Sarah Gillespie, a vice president of the United Media syndicate; his agent, Esther Sherman; and his longtime companion William Lauch, a New York architect.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,Theater Critic | March 31, 1992
"It's hard to put into words the feelings," Shirley Gershman, mother of the late Howard Ashman -- Baltimore-born lyricist and executive producer of "Beauty and the Beast" -- said from Los Angeles late last night after the Disney animated feature won Oscars for best song and score.Ashman, who died of AIDS at age 40 a little more than a year ago, was represented at the awards by Gershman; his sister, Sarah Gillespie, a vice president of the United Media syndicate; his agent, Esther Sherman; and his longtime companion William Lauch, a New York architect.
NEWS
By Arthur Hirsch and Arthur Hirsch,Staff Writer | September 2, 1992
ANNAPOLIS -- The Oscar that Howard Ashman did not live to claim stood on the white grand piano at Dick Gessner's Broadway Corner all Saturday night long.It stood there until closing time, until the last of the gifted amateurs and the local dinner theater pros had taken a turn singing in the spotlights. They sang songs from Broadway and movies in the presence of Oscar, glossy totem of all their ambitions.During the break, they gathered around it, close enough to see their breath fog the sheen.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,Theater Critic | February 21, 1992
"Beauty and the Beast" made motion picture history Wednesday when it became the first animated feature ever nominated for a best-picture Academy Award. That's the beauty of it. The beastly side is the recent death of one of the men most responsible for the movie's success. Howard Ashman, the film's Baltimore-born executive producer and lyricist, died of AIDS last March at age 40.Yesterday his mother and sister spoke of the mixture of pride and sadness with which they received the news of the Oscar nominations, which include three for original songs and two others for score and sound.
FEATURES
March 29, 1992
Howard Ashman put words in the mouths of an ugly beast, a beautiful girl, a little mermaid, a man-eating plant and a teapot.Yes, a teapot. This Baltimore-born lyricist, director and producer had the magical power to animate the inanimate.The strength of his magic will be evident tomorrow night, when "Beauty and the Beast" -- the Disney animated feature on which he served as executive producer as well as lyricist -- competes for six Academy Awards, including best picture. (The other nominations are for three original songs, score and sound.
FEATURES
By Michael Davis | March 29, 1992
TEARS SPILLED FROM Shirley Gershman's eyes and her voice became thick and husky. But she continued talking to the audience of eighth-grade Sunday school students, and they rode through the emotional storm with her."Howard was just like you," she tells them, "and just like you, he was not invincible. He got AIDS. But you do not have to get it. You hold your future in your hands."Acquired immune deficiency syndrome took her brilliant starburst of a son, Howard Ashman, and Shirley Gershman has responded to tragedy with a vow to spare other mothers the anguish she has endured.
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