Clifford David
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1928 - 2017
CLIFFORD DAVID, best known for his thrilling singing voice in such Broadway musicals as WILDCAT, 1776 and ON A CLEAR DAY YOU CAN SEE FOREVER has passed away peacefully in Los Angeles at 89.

Clifford was born in Toledo, Ohio, the youngest son of Farris and Lily (nee Abdow). His Uncle was Metropolitan Samuel David of Toledo, the Archbishop of a diocese of Syrian Orthodox parishes. Samuel's chanting of the Byzantine Mass was world renowned, and Clifford, inspired by his Uncle's voice, went to New York to pursue music and theater.

A protégé of Lee Strasberg's, Clifford made his Broadway debut as Scipio in Albert Camus' CALIGULA directed by Sidney Lumet. Additionally, Clifford played Pasquale in THE ASPERN PAPERS directed by Margaret Webster; Antipholus in the 1963 Off Broadway revival of THE BOYS FROM SYRACUSE; Laertes in Joseph Papp's HAMLET; Lord Byron in the Lincoln Center production of Tennessee Williams' CAMINO REAL.

A member of the Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences, Clifford's filmography includes roles in INVITATION TO A GUNFIGHTER; RESURRECTION; M. Night Shyamalan's SIGNS; and he played Beethoven in BILL AND TED'S EXCELLENT ADVENTURE. Also, over the years, Clifford made numerous appearances in episodic television.

A member of the Actors Studio from 1962, Clifford worked with many of the greats of American Theater, Film and Television. He told wonderful stories of drinking with Richard Burton and shopping with Marilyn Monroe. He was working with Monroe on a play entitled THE CAT, adapted from a Colette novel by Arthur Miller, when she died.

A man who exuded a joy for living, Clifford was also a beloved acting teacher, singing coach, father and friend.

Predeceased by his parents and his brothers Alex and Fred, Clifford is survived by his daughter, Lily Lambert; his sons Ted, James and Tim Otis; his former wife Elsa Lambert and their grandchildren Julian, Ginger and Victoria; as well as Nieces, Nephews and Cousins in Worcester Massachusetts and Toledo Ohio.

In lieu of flowers contributions can be made to the MPTF (Motion Picture and Television Fund) Foundation 51151 Los Angeles, CA 90051-9727.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in New York Times from Dec. 11 to Dec. 12, 2017.
Memories & Condolences
Guest Book sponsored by His loving friends and family.
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187 entries
October 7, 2020
Hey Clifford...miss seeing you pulling up to the Urth Cafe in your big beautiful Caddy convertible. Hope you found a spot for it up there with you. Lucky and Glad to have known you!
Dave DiGregorio
Friend
July 2, 2020
Forever in our hearts! Inspiration to all! Thank you for believing in me! Sending happy birthday wishes heavenward!!!
Laurie Heddy Morris
Student
July 1, 2020
Uncle Clifford: Hope you had a nice birthday in heaven with dad and Uncle Alex. I miss you every day. I still hear the way you used to laugh. You were a light in my life. Love you, Valerie


Valerie David Duncan
Family
July 1, 2020
Goodness knows we miss you! When your birthday rolls around, we are thankful you were born and that you were such a beautiful part of our lives ... and will remain so always.
Terese, Bill and TD
Friend
June 30, 2020
Happy Birthday, Dad.
Love you and miss you!
Thanks for always being there.
Ted
Son
December 29, 2019
Loving my memories with you...wish we had more to create... I'm missing your sparkling beauty and kind being...sending you gentle hugs and infinite heart Love...xxZ
December 28, 2019
I just learned of Uncle Clifford's passing and am profoundly sad. He was my Mother, Stephanie D'Arc's student who became one of her closest friends and I grew up with him being a very important member of our extended family. I have so many wonderful memories of fun times together and one of my favorites was our trip to a wedding in Virginia where we laughed for hours on end. I love you dearly and wish we were in touch in your last years.
Pamela
Pamela D'Arc
December 5, 2019
2 years have gone by and I still miss you. I miss telling you all the latest... Rest In Peace dear friend. Love, Bertila
Bertila Damas
Friend
August 1, 2019
I love you, dad... I'm still struggling to cope with not being able to call you for advice or just talk about films, life, music, art, or listen to your wonderful stories and experiences. - Sending you many thanks for being there for me when I needed someone with your wisdom. I miss you dearly.
Ted Otis
May 2, 2019
You are the greatest. Missing you all the way here in 2019. What a teacher. What a friend. Thank you for believing in all of us.
Tammy Christel
April 5, 2019
Family coffee in Malibu
December 2, 2018
Thinking of you Dad. It's still difficult to not be able to talk or visit with you. Conversations with you were always the best not to mention your unending supportiveness. I miss you dearly and will be sprinkling some of your ashes on the beach in Santa Barbara where I know you enjoyed visiting. Much love, Ted
Ted Otis
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Lunch in Malibu
December 2, 2018
Beethoven
December 2, 2018
December 2, 2018
'1776'
December 2, 2018
Clifford with Yul Brenner
December 2, 2018
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December 1, 2018
Uncle Clifford: A year you have been gone on Nov. 30 and I think about you every day. An angel on earth and an angel in heaven. Love you always, your niece, Valerie David Duncan
Valerie Duncan
June 18, 2018
Happy Fathers Day Dad! Thinking of you.
Ted
June 7, 2018
I remember Clifford often and then think about him for hours.... yesterday I wished I could bring him to my new home...he would be very happy for me and proud...I like to feel he's peeked in on me now and then with his brilliant smile. I miss him, too ....xx Zia
Zia Shields
June 7, 2018
I, too, think of Clifford often...and when that occurs it's for long stretches of Time that day...I wish I could have him visit my new homestead in person...he'd be extremely happy for me and proud...I'm hoping he's peaked in on me from the Heavens...I miss your Father, Dear Clifford...immensely Xxx Zia
June 6, 2018
Your always in my thoughts dad. I love you and am thinking about you often. I often have the urge to call you and ask a question, get some advice or share news. I still do it... just prayerfully now. Your always here.
Ted Otis
June 4, 2018
Just learned of Clifford's passing. We are heartbroken. He was a loving gentleman and friend and we will miss him.
Molly Meeker
May 20, 2018
Perfectly cast as an amused Beethoven.
May 20, 2018
Clifford being Clifford :-)
May 20, 2018
At 'Midland' preparatory school visiting his children.
May 20, 2018
Family Vacation.
May 20, 2018
On broadway As Edward Rutledge in the hit musical '1777'
May 20, 2018
Family ski trip. Elsa, always at the ready with her trusty Nikon DSLR, taking these wonderful time capsule photos.
May 20, 2018
Shot by Clifford's wife, the family, visiting the grandparents Palm Springs estate.
May 20, 2018
Family Christmas in Santa Monica, CA. 1980's
May 20, 2018
Clifford and son Ted at the Museum of Natural History's Rose Garden in Los Angeles '70's
May 20, 2018
May 20, 2018
May 20, 2018
May 20, 2018
Clifford's Headshot
May 20, 2018
Playing Beethoven in the comedy film 'Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure"
May 20, 2018
Broadway hit "1776"
May 20, 2018
oldbroadway@mac.com
May 20, 2018
May 20, 2018
April 19, 2018
I remember meeting Clifford through my beloved voice teacher Stephanie Scourby. She would speak of Clifford like he was sunshine. An energy force. I hadn't seen him in years but it was such a pleasure to meet him the times that I did and to hear her talk about him and his wonderful life and VOICE!
Rest in Peace dear man.
jody gelb
February 14, 2018
Rendered by legendary caricaturist Al Hirschfeld for '1776'.
February 14, 2018
screen credit with the iconic 'Charlies Angels' logo.
February 14, 2018
In 'Charlie's Angels', one of Clifford's many episodic television roles.
February 14, 2018
with Barbara Harris in the original Broadway cast of 'On A Clear Day You Can See Forever'
February 14, 2018
In the cast of the original broadway musical '1776'.
February 14, 2018
with son James traveling.
February 14, 2018
with son James in Turkey
February 14, 2018
Clifford having coffee his favorite morning spot.
February 14, 2018
Clifford with family and friends in Los Angeles
February 5, 2018


I'm smiling with the new pics I see today...
TYTYTY...
Kind Thoughts Always❣
xxZ
Zia Shields
February 4, 2018
Classic Clifford
February 4, 2018
On Broadway in 'On A Clear Day You Can See Forever'
February 4, 2018
rehearsing on Broadway for 'On A Clear Day You Can See Forever'
February 4, 2018
with sons after nachos at favorite haunt, 'El Coyote'.
February 4, 2018
Clifford with Mickey Rooney
February 4, 2018
Playing a one-armed bandit in 'Invitation to a Gunfighter'
February 4, 2018
Clifford with Oliver Reed
February 4, 2018
at his morning hangout 'Urth Cafe'.
February 4, 2018
on the set playing Beethoven.
February 4, 2018
80th (surprise) birthday party.
February 4, 2018
Clifford in Palm Springs, California.
February 4, 2018
Clifford in Santa Barbara with daughter Lily and sons.
February 4, 2018
Clifford and son Tim in Hollywood at the El Capitan theatre.
February 4, 2018
Clifford in Palm Springs with family.
February 4, 2018
Clifford at the 'Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat' party.
February 4, 2018
Elsa and Clifford in Santa Barbara
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