Rebecca Luker Dies at 59 Following Battle With ALS
Broadway actress Rebecca Luker has died at the age of 59 according to The New York Times on Wednesday. Luker publicly revealed that she had amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, commonly known as A.L.S. or Lou Gehrig’s disease, this past February. Luker performed in nine Broadway productions, including as Maria in The Sound of Music. She was nominated for three Tony Awards and two Drama Desk Awards.
In an August 2020 essay for The Hollywood Reporter, Luker’s husband Danny Burstein revealed that Luker was unable to walk and needed help with tasks like brushing her hair. Luker and Burstein also both contracted COVID-19 this past spring.
Broadway performers and places like The Kennedy Center honored Luker’s legacy and celebrated her talent on social media.
Rebecca Luker was one of the most beautiful voices on Broadway and a lovely person ,,We are all devastated for Danny and for ourselves,,we will never get to witness her talents on stage again ????????????????RIP Dear Dear Girl???? pic.twitter.com/6qSKhEZZ2c
— Bernadette Peters (@OfficialBPeters) December 23, 2020
We join in mourning the loss of the radiant spirit and incredible talent of Broadway star #RebeccaLuker.
Her final role was in the 2020 #BroadwayCenterStage production of Footloose at the Kennedy Center. (1/4)
???? Footloose. Photo by Jeremy Daniel pic.twitter.com/aHkcThT6Aj
— The Kennedy Center (@kencen) December 23, 2020
This clip makes me cry. I tried to imitate her voice on this cast recording as a girl endlessly (to no avail…she’s a legend) and I’m just so sorry she’s gone. Love to her family. Love to Danny. #RebeccaLuker https://t.co/8WGE6JJemp
— Sara Bareilles (@SaraBareilles) December 24, 2020
My friend and one of the main reasons I wanted to be a soprano…. Her voice was soprano heaven. I love you, Rebecca. I know you’re no longer in pain and already singing your heart out up there ???? pic.twitter.com/bEqoSbcIsS
— Kristin Chenoweth (@KChenoweth) December 23, 2020
Image via Twitter/The Kennedy Center