• "Ira was such a droll and charming man. I always enjoyed our..."
    - Steve Ross
  • "Ira was such a droll and charming man. I always enjoyed our..."
  • "Condolences to his family and friends."
    - Robert Stock
  • "Ira and I were fledgling copywriters at Grey Advertising..."
    - Enid Futterman
  • "There are two short stories I remember in particular about..."
    - Bryan Boyhan


Died of heart failure October 6 at 76, having fulfilled his dream to write for Broadway. With his story and lyrics and Cy Coleman's music, The Life was nominated for 12 Tony awards and won "1997 Best Musical" Drama Desk Award, Outer Critics Circle Award, and Drama League Award as well as praise from Stephen Sondheim (that Ira treasured) and a 2017 London revival. Ira began his musical theater career in the '60s, writing the legendary musical What's a Nice Country Like You Doing in a State Like This? with NYU frat brother Cary Hoffman. Working as a copywriter as well during those years, he penned such iconic ads as Bounty, The Quicker Picker Upper. He went on to collaborate with, besides Cy Coleman, such distinguished composers as Burton Lane (Finian's Rainbow), Jule Styne (Funny Girl), Steve Allen (This Could Be the Start of Something Big), and Galt MacDermot (Hair), writing for musical theater, TV, motion pictures, and cabaret. Yip Harburg (The Wizard of Oz) affectionately called him "Brother Ira." Survived by sister Linda Dadon (Bart), niece Allyson Pimentel (Pedro Noguera), nephew Ted Yeschin (Kate), longtime partner Sallie Quirk, and a multitude of friends and colleagues who loved him. Memorial service to be announced.

Published in The New York Times on Oct. 11, 2018
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