Update: MetroStage is hosting a remembrance of Kevin Laughan on Monday March 11, starting at 7:30pm at MetroStage, 1401 N. Royal Street, Alexandria, VA. Everyone is invited to attend. A program is being planned. If you would like to share a song or remembrance, please email Carolyn Griffin.
The Washington theatre community is in shock today as news is spreading that Kevin Laughon, performer and multi-talented theatre technician, left a message on Facebook early this morning expressing deep despair, said goodbye, and killed himself. Laughon was 49. DC Theatre Scene has confirmed his death with the Prince William County (VA) Police Department.
“He was a brilliant artist.” Elliot Lanes, who described himself as a longtime booth partner with Laughon at Theater J, said in a phone call today. “He could do costumes, set construction, painting, graphics, stage management…. Not many people can do all of that. He could, though, and was brilliant at it.”
A few years ago, Lanes has updated the closeup interview he wrote a few years ago: Theatre Life with Kevin Laughon for BroadwayWorld.
Many audience members will remember Kevin Laughon from his 6 years at MetroStage. He was the gracious greeter, the charming front of house manager who, once the show began, could be seen slipping off to run lights or sound or help backstage. “We are all heartbroken,” Carolyn Griffin, Artistic Director of MetroStage said. “I’ve been getting calls today from people all over the country who had connections to Kevin and read his post on Facebook this morning. I wish Kevin could have felt how many people cared for him.”
But, for anyone contemplating suicide, the world is a hellish and isolated place. Amy Austin of theatreWashington reminds members of the community that the Taking Care of Our Own Fund is there to help those suffering from depression.
Our deep condolences to colleagues, friends and family of Kevin Laughon.
If you are in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741.