We were all saddened when we learned that community philanthropist and arts patron Charles Wyly had been killed in a car accident on Sunday morning in Colorado, and we here at Mixmaster send our condolences to the Wyly family. Robert has the details of Wyly's passing and initial reactions from the AT&T Performing Arts Center, which houses the Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre.
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Wyly donated $20 million for the building of his namesake theater, and he was also on the board of directors of many major local organizations including the Dallas Theater Center, the Dallas Symphony, the Communities Foundation and Dallas Center for the Performing Arts Foundation. After the jump, read reactions from Dallas Theater Center's Artistic Director, Kevin Moriarty, and Chairman of the Board, Frank Risch.
From Kevin Moriarty, Artistic Director - Dallas Theater Center:
"For many decades, Charles provided great service, support and inspiration for Dallas Theater Center. He was a visionary who helped DTC grow and deepen its contributions to the community. He celebrated the power of the art itself and acknowledged that theater has always had an important place in communities: to tell truthful stories, including, at times, difficult ones.
He also showed great kindness toward me. I first met Charles during my initial visits to Dallas, during the interview process, prior to making the decision to come here and become DTC's artistic director in 2007. His personal warmth, deep commitment to Dallas and his abiding love for the theater were instrumental in my decision to accept the job when it was offered.
During the past four years, I was fortunate to get to know Charles. I was inspired by his quiet yet powerful ability to lead, his love of family, his commitment to the community, and his ability to tell a good story. I was struck by his genuine interest in people, ideas and experiences beyond his own. He was a great listener. His generosity included personal friendship and institutional advice in addition to his deep financial support."
From Frank Risch, Chairman of the Board - Dallas Theater Center:
"For so long, the Dallas Theater Center has benefited greatly from Charles' wonderful quiet, modest approach to leadership and his and Dee's long time generous support. Many of us will long remember opening night of "A Midsummer Night's Dream," which formally opened our new home at the Dee and Charles Wyly Theater. Upon ending his brief remarks, in his typical modest way, he turned away from the podium to walk off stage, not aware of the standing ovation of a grateful audience of theatergoers who wished him to remain on stage so that they could thank him with their applause.
We at Dallas Theater Center, and indeed all of us in this wonderful community that he made so much better, have lost a great friend."
As more information comes in and funeral arrangements are announced, visit Mixmaster and Unfair Park for the details.