Harvey Schmidt was an American composer and illustrator. He forged a long lasting collaboration with lyricist Tom Jones, whom he met at the University of Texas. The duo are best known for writing The Fantastiks (1960), which ran for 42 years Off-Broadway at the Sullivan Street Playhouse. The show was awarded the Tony Honors for Excellence in Theatre in 1991. Schmidt and Jones came to Broadway in 1963 with 110 in the Shade, a musical based on the movie The Rainmaker. The musical earned Schmidt a Tony Award nomination for Best Composer. In 1966, Schmidt and Jones teamed up again to write the musical I Do! I Do!. Schmidt earned another Tony nomination and the show’s stars, Robert Preston and Mary Martin, both won Tony Awards for their performances. Schmidt and Jones’ last production on Broadway was the 1969 musical Celebration.
Schmidt and Jones continued to work together Off-Broadway, with shows such as Colette (1970), Philemon (1973), Mirette (1996), and Roadside (2001). Along with Jones, Schmidt was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame in 1998 and the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2012.
Schmidt also worked as a successful illustrator for magazines such as Harper’s Bizarre, Life, and Sports Illustrated. He died in 2018.
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