Robert Prosky

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Robert Prosky
Born Robert Józef Porzuczek
(1930-12-13)December 13, 1930
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Died December 8, 2008(2008-12-08) (aged 77)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Cause of death
Heart procedure
Resting place
Rock Creek Cemetery, Washington, D.C., U.S.
Nationality American
Other names Robert Józef Porzuczek
Robert Józef Prosky
Robert Porzuczek
Occupation Actor, comedian
Years active 1971–2008
Spouse(s) Ida Hove (1960–2008; his death)
Children Stefan Prosky
John Prosky
Andrew Prosky

Robert Prosky (December 13, 1930 – December 8, 2008) was an American actor and comedian.

Early life[edit]

Prosky, a Polish American,[1] was born Robert Joseph Porzuczek in the Manayunk neighborhood of Philadelphia,[2] Pennsylvania, to Joseph and Helen Porzuczek. His father was a grocer and butcher.[3][4][5] He was raised in a working-class neighborhood and studied at the American Theatre Wing, later graduating from Temple University. He performed at Old Academy Players, a small theater in the East Falls section of Philadelphia, adjacent to Manayunk.

Career[edit]

Prosky appeared in Thief, Christine, Hanky Panky, The Natural, Hoffa, Broadcast News, Things Change, The Great Outdoors, Loose Cannons, Rudy, Mrs. Doubtfire, Green Card, and Dead Man Walking. In addition to appearing in films, Prosky appeared as a regular on Hill Street Blues, Danny, and Veronica's Closet. He was considered for the role of Martin Crane in Frasier and later made a guest appearance in the series as a reclusive writer. He portrayed Rebecca Howe's father on Cheers. Prosky also portrayed Jake "the Snake" Connolly on a 2-part 1991 episode of Coach.

He also appeared as Will Darnell, the man who owned the auto repair shop where Arnie Cunningham (Keith Gordon) rebuilds the possessed car "Christine" in the film John Carpenter's Christine based on Stephen King's novel. Prior to his film and television career, he appeared in numerous productions at the Arena Stage in Washington, D.C., most notably as Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman. Prosky often performed at Arena Stage with over 100 stage credits to his name at that theatre alone. He also originated the role of Shelly Levene in David Mamet's Pulitzer Prize-winning play Glengarry Glen Ross. He was also a board member of the Cape May Stage in Cape May, New Jersey.

Personal life[edit]

In 1960, he married Ida Hove, who survived him, along with three sons, Stefan, John and Andrew Prosky. Andrew and John Prosky are also actors.

Death[edit]

On December 8, 2008, Prosky died at age 77, 5 days before his 78th birthday, from complications following a heart procedure.[6] At the time of his death, he was living in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Washington, D.C.

Filmography[edit]

Television[edit]

Stage[edit]

Year Title Role Location/Notes
1971 Moonchildren (American premiere) Mr. Willis Arena Stage, Washington, D.C./later moved to Broadway in 1972
1975 The Dybbuk Rabbi Az ielke Arena Stage, Washington, D.C./with Dianne Wiest
1983 A View from the Bridge Alfieri New York City
1984 Glengarry Glen Ross Shelly Levene John Golden Theatre, New York City/Tony Award Nomination/ Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Ensemble
1988 A Walk in the Woods Andrei Botvinnik Booth Theatre, New York City/Tony Award Nomination
1996 Camping with Henry and Tom Thomas Edison Lucille Lortel Theatre, New York City
2002 An American Daughter Alan Hughes Arena Stage, Washington, D.C.
2004 Democracy Herbert Wehner Brooks Atkinson Theatre, New York City
2006 Awake and Sing! Jacob Arena Stage, Washington, D.C.
2008 The Price Solomon Walnut Street Theatre, Philadelphia; Theater J, Washington, DC / A joint production

References[edit]

External links[edit]