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Vivian Matalon, Director of Stage and Screen, Dies at 88

He directed Noël Coward in London, and won a Tony Award for directing an acclaimed revival of Morning's at Seven in 1980.

Donald Corren and Judy Kaye in Souvenir, which was directed by Vivian Matalon, who died on August 15 at the age of 88.
(© Carol Rosegg)

Vivian Matalon, versatile director of stage and screen, died on August 15 at his home in Glenford, New York, as a result of complications from diabetes, according to his spouse, the playwright and actor Stephen Temperley. Matalon was 88.

Though he started out as an actor, Matalon became a much sought-after theater director. Notably, he directed Noël Coward in Suite in Three Keys (1966) — a trilogy of three Coward plays in which he also starred — in London, a version of which came to Broadway in 1974 as Noël Coward in Two Keys, starring Hume Cronyn, Jessica Tandy, Anne Baxter, and Thom Christopher.

He won a Tony Award for directing an acclaimed revival of Paul Osborn's Morning's at Seven in 1980, a year that saw him also directing a revival of Brigadoon and a production of Arthur Miller's The American Clock.

Other Broadway directing credits include a 1983 revival of Emlyn Williams's The Corn Is Green, starring Cicely Tyson, and Souvenir (2005), a play about the notoriously terrible soprano Florence Foster Jenkins written by Stephen Temperley.

He also continued to work in London's West End, directing Anna Massey in a 1965 production of Tennessee Williams's The Glass Menagerie, and Keir Dullea and Lee Remick in a 1970 production of William Inge's Bus Stop.

Matalon is survived by both Temperley and his sister, Lili Matalon.


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