BALTIMORE, MD: A memorial will be held on October 20 at Everyman Theatre for actress Vivienne Shub, the longtime Everyman company member who died on September 18. She was a month shy of her 96th birthday.
A native of Baltimore, Shub was a consistent presence on the stage and screen for nearly 50 years. Shub is most well known for her role as a comically evil orphanage matron in John Waters’s cult classic Cry-Baby, but her stage roles included The Waverly Gallery, The Crucible, Buried Child, The Importance of Being Earnest, The Trip to Bountiful, Heathen Valley, The Fifth of July, Hedda Gabler, Uncle Vanya, The Cripple of Inishmaan and Much Ado About Nothing, and many others at the Everyman.
She was also the lead in several one-woman shows written by her sister Naomi Greenberg-Slovin, including Viva La Vivienne. Shub earned a Helen Hayes nomination for her work at Olney Theatre, and appeared on stages throughout New York, Philadelphia, Providence, and Washington, D.C.
Shub was a born actress, and would often act out stories for her father, Samuel Slovin, as a child. She acted in high school at Vagabond Players but enrolled at Townson State Teachers College after graduation. Her first stage role was in Moliere’s Tartuffe at Center Stage (coincidentally, the very first show at that theatre).
Shub continued to act for Center Stage and Everyman until the age of 90. “When Vivienne agreed to be a part of our resident company, it was one of the happiest days of my professional life,” recalled Everyman’s founding artistic director, Vincent Lancisi, in a statement. “She was an artist of the highest caliber. Without intending to, she became an instant mentor to everyone at Everyman. The thought that we won’t have that beaming smile lighting the halls of Everyman breaks my heart.”