Founder and President of “The Theatre Museum”
dies of Cancer
Helen Marie Guditis, Founder
and President of “The Theatre Museum” , died
of cancer, in her sleep. She valiantly fought
for 4 years but succumbed to the disease on
December 3, 2012. She was with family members,
who said that she sang broadway show tunes
until her last breath. Stewart F. Lane, chairman
of The Theatre Museum called Helen's dedication
to theater inspiring and stated, "Helen
will be deeply missed by the theater community."
In 2003 Guditis founded the “Broadway Theatre
Institute”, the name was changed to “The Theatre
Museum” in 2007. The Museum has successfully
functioned with partnerships and associations
in greater New York and throughout country.
The Theatre Museum has provided exhibitions,
educational, and public programs to bring together
scholars, architects, historians, and actors
to chronicle the national theatre.
The Theatre Museum Awards are
presented each spring and are a highlight of
the New York theatre season. Guditis was instrumental
in securing talent, presenters and funding for
the prestigious awards. Some of the recipients
that received honors from Helen and the Theatre
Museum Board include: Sheldon Harnick, Ellen
Burstyn, Carmen De Lavallade, Bonnie Comley,
Michael Kantor, Louis Botto, and the organizations:
The Theatre Development Fund, The Drama League,
Frank Sinatra High School and Arts Horizons
Born in Chicago, Illinois to
Albert and Helen Guditis, she graduated from
Marquette University, The American Academy of
Dramatic Arts, and received a Master of Fine
Arts from Northwestern University. After directing
and appearing in several plays at “The Theatre
on the Lake” in Chicago, she moved to New York
City in 1972, to begin a successful career in
Broadway and off-Broadway productions. In the
1980’s she taught speech and drama in the New
York Public Schools before dedicating her life
to theater education and preservation.
Helen Marie Guidtis is survived by her brother
Albert John Guditis, nephew Jay Matthew Guditis,
his wife Mary and grand nephews Nathaniel and
In lieu of flowers, please send tax deductible
contributions to: The Theatre Museum, 40 Worth
Street, Suite 824, New York, New York 10013.
crossroads of artists and artisans"
The Theatre Museum
is developing an exhibition
devoted to Queens's theatrical history.
you have information/artifacts
that could be useful to the story,
please e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
or call at (212) 764 4112.
Exhibit's planning phase
As part of an ongoing study
of theatrical activities and buildings throughout
New York, the Theatre
Museum, in collaboration with the Theatre Historical
Society of America, has turned its attention
to the Borough of Queens.
Queens has long played several unique and significant
roles in the history of New York theatre. It
has long functioned as New York’s backstage.
The Steinways, followed by other instrument
and scenic manufacturers have made Queens an
important source of theatrical appurtenances
and equipment. Queens has functioned, too, as
New York’s green room. And finally, there were
significant theatrically-associated sites and
activities. Exploration during the exhibit’s
planning phase includes potential study areas,
potential areas of public outreach, and exhibition
venues throughout the Borough and the city.