(1954 - )
Harvey Forbes Fierstein is an American playwright, comedian, actor and columnist.
Fierstein (born June 6, 1954) was born in
York. He made his acting debut in 1971 in the Andy Warhol
play Pork. Fierstein is best known for his semi-autobiographical
play and film, Torch Song Trilogy, in which he wrote and starred.
In 1983, he won the Tony for “Best Performance by a Leading Actor
in a Play” and “Best Play” for Torch Song Trilogy.
Fierstein is also a renowned playwright, stand-up comedian
and columnist on gay issues. In 1984 he won his third Tony for “Best
Book for a Musical” for the play La Cage aux Folles. Then
in 2003, he won the Tony for “Best Performance by a Leading Actor
in a Musical” for the musical Hairspray. This fourth award,
made Fierstein only one-of-two people to win the Tony in four different
categories (he shares this honor with Tommy Tune). From February 2005
until the shows close in January 2006, Fierstein played the lead role
of Tevye in the Broadway production of Fiddler on the Roof.
He also had cameo roles in the blockbuster hits, Mrs.
Doubtfire (1993) and Independence Day (1996). Fierstein has
also done many voiceovers for characters in both television series and
films. He was featured as the voice for Karl, Homer Simpson’s
assistant, in an episode of The Simpsons; played the voice of
“Elmer” in the 1999 HBO special on the children’s
book The Sissy Duckling; and was the voice of Yao in the Walt
Disney film Mulan, in 1998. He also narrated the Academy Award
winning documentary, The Life and Times of Harvey Milk.
Sources: “Harvey Fierstein, ” American
Jewish Desk Reference (NY: Random
House, 1999), p. 360; IMDB; Photo courtesy of David Shankbone