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Lynn Archer

March 5, 2004

Lynn Archer Dies

Served On Council More Than 25 Years

Lynn Archer, who served on Council for more than 25 years, died in New York on January 1, 2004

"If there was ever a person I wanted to grow up to be like, it was Lynn," said Equity President Patrick Quinn. "Her service to Equity was almost unrivaled, and her charm and talent, onstage and off, was something we were all blessed to have shared. Lynn was the one that directed my path to a few committee meetings at Equity 26 years ago, and the rest, as they say is history. I will miss her very, very much."

Ms. Archer was first elected to Council in 1976, having already served on the Board of Equity Library Theatre West (1960-64) and, after moving to New York in 1964, as a member of the Stock Committee for five years, on negotiating teams for several Stock contracts (1973, 1975-6), on the 1973 Nominating Committee and as Secretary of the Credit Union's Credit Committee. Her involvement and subsequent chairmanship of the Stock Committee continued throughout her Council tenure as did her work with the Election Procedures Committee. She also served four three-year terms as Recording Secretary (1982-1994) before that position was combined with the office of Treasurer. Running for election in 1999, Ms. Archer was concerned with expanding job opportunities. "We must maintain a national 'bottom line' for criteria which identifies an Equity company or theatre," she said. "Let's keep Equity synonymous with professionalism and be wary of non-union ratios. They deprive not only our young Chorus members, but also seasoned character actors of employment. "

Lynn Archer was born Harriett Argenbright on November 3, 1922 in Macomb, Illinois. She grew up on a family farm and attended a one-room schoolhouse. Graduating from Knox College in 1943 with a degree in drama, she worked for the Army Special Services as a variety entertainer, touring occupied Japan for two years before settling in Hawaii, where she hosted a daily women's radio show.

Her more than 50 years of acting and singing spanned vaudeville, TV, regional theatre, dinner theatre, summer stock, national tours of The Music Man, Bye Bye Birdie, Mame and several productions of Fiddler on the Roof. She made her Broadway debut in 1949 in High Button Shoes. Other shows included the Broadway revival of Fiddler with Zero Mostel, I'm Solomon, and as the understudy for Gloria Swanson in Butterflies are Free. Off-Broadway she was in the original production of Hair and in the revival of Follies.

Saddened by news of her death, Executive Director Alan Eisenberg called Lynn "a lady of great dignity and character." She shall be missed.

Lynn Archer Remembered at Actors' Equity

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