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Charles Ludlam

CHARLES LUDLAM (1943–1987) was a multi-talented, off-the-wall
and out-of-the-closet actor, playwright, director, and producer whose Ridiculous
Theatrical Company broke boundaries and helped define the avant-garde Off-Off-
Broadway movement. He was born in New York and educated at Hofstra University.
He first acted professionally in New York in 1967, and later that year he founded
his own troupe and was busy for the next twenty years, the company going from
obscurity to campy cult interest to citywide admiration. Ludlam and his longtime
companion Everett Quinton usually played the leading roles (male or female) in his
outrageous spoofs, although as time went by he employed less camp and more of a
highly theatrical style. His Marguerite Gautier in Camille (1974) was perhaps the role
most identified with Ludlam, and his play The Mystery of Irma Vep (1984) is his most
revived in theatres across the country.