TOMMY TUNE, American dancer, born; At 6-foot-6-and-a-half-inches, Tommy Tune cast a long shadow over Broadway for many years, accumulating nine Tony Awards in eighteen years. Tune is the first person to have won Tonys in four different categories: Best Director, Best Choreographer, Best Featured Actor in a Musical, and Best Actor in a Musical. (The only other person to accomplish this feat is Harvey Fierstein.)
Tune’s trademark style is infused with a respect for and knowledge of old-fashioned musical theater, but staged with state-of-the-art savvy. While other choreographers such as Jerome Robbins and Agnes de Mille individuated members of the ensemble, Tune celebrates the chorus line.
Normally reticent about his personal life, Tune shocked many by discussing his bisexuality in his autobiography, Footnotes (1998). “What I arrived at in my 59th year is that I just want to walk in truth and live by my own time.” The book contains moving passages about his lover of almost ten years, stage manager David Wolfe, who died of AIDS in 1994, and about actor and costumer Michael Stuart (1943-1997), with whom Tune lived for seven years.