Of course we all loved him as Lennie Briscoe on Law & Order, a role he played for 12 years before succumbing to prostate cancer. But many of us, who are old enough, have loved Jerry Orbach for years prior, whether as a leading song-and-dance man on Broadway (he originated the role of Billy Flynn in Chicago, and his Tony-winning role as Chuck Baxter in Promises, Promises), as a great character actor (amongst my favorites was as Jack Rosenthal, a gangster who’s hired by his brother-in-law to get rid of his mistress, in the 2nd best Woody Allen movie, Crimes & Misdemeanors), and of course as the unforgettable voice of Lumiere, the candelabrum, in my favorite Disney musical, Beauty & The Beast). A few of many, many others.
One of his earliest roles was, in 1960, as El Gallo, the narrator/bandit from the classic musical, The Fantastiks. And from that show came this gorgeous song. I’ll never tire of watching Orbach on TV or in the movies. And I’ll never tire of hearing him sing one of my very favorite songs, “Try To Remember” (performed here in 1982 on the TV special Night of 100 Stars).
Orbach was taken away from us (#FuckCancer) on this December 28, in 2004.
“Deep in December, our hearts should remember…then follow…”
We’ll always remember, Jerry~