As most of you now know, the beloved Murray Ross passed away Tuesday morning following a brief illness. Murray brought professional theatre to Colorado Springs by creating and serving as the Artistic Leader of Theatreworks at UCCS during the last 42 years. That has not only made him a pillar of the creative community in the Pikes Peak region, but makes him one of the longest-tenured artistic directors in American Theatre history. His contributions to Colorado Springs are immeasurable. We are all able to do what we do in this community because of Murray’s steadfast commitment and passion to the art form. And this community is all the better for having had Murray at the forefront to cheer us on and bring to life stories that are relevant to us on our stages during these last several decades.
What you may not have known is that Murray’s work often took to the stage at the Fine Arts Center as well. Whether through a production that he helmed that was performed in our theatre, or our own productions which are regularly populated with artists he had taught, Murray’s footprint extends into our building and our history as well. Few love theatre as much as Murray Ross did and even fewer are able to deeply affect so many through sustained theatrical vision.
It was an honor to be welcomed warmly into this community by him, to learn from him, to fight with him, to laugh with him and to toast with him.
Bravo, maestro. May we continue to make you proud.
-Scott RC Levy
[NOTE: Scott RC Levy will be directing THEATREWORKS’ production of Eugene O’Neill’s The Hairy Ape next month at the Dusty Loo Bon Vivant Theatre on the campus of UCCS. This was to be Murray Ross’ next directorial effort.]