Robert Morse of Mad Men, Broadway Fame Is Dead

Actor who portrayed Bertram Cooper was 90
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 21, 2022 11:37 AM CDT
'Bert Cooper' of Mad Men Dies at 90
Robert Morse and Carol Channing during a rehearsal for "Sugar Babies" in New York in 1977.   (AP Photo/Marty Lederhandler, File)

He gained fame late in his career for his portrayal of Bert Cooper on Mad Men, but Robert Morse had a successful Broadway career long before that. The 90-year-old died Wednesday at his home in Los Angeles after a short, unspecified illness, reports People. Morse became a familiar face to TV viewers in the 2000s for his portrayal of the eccentric Cooper of the Sterling Cooper ad agency, notes Variety. But decades earlier, Morse won a Tony as a relative newcomer to Broadway in the starring role of the 1961 musical How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, per the New York Times.

He would later pick up another Tony for his portrayal of Truman Capote in Tru, as well as an Emmy for a PBS adaptation of Tru. On Broadway, his breakthrough performance in How to Succeed helped make the show a huge hit with more than 1,400 performances. Both the Times and Variety take note of a Morse trademark—his "impish, gap-toothed grin." He was able to bring his career full circle with a song-and-dance dream sequence in his final appearance on Mad Men. “What a send-off!” Morse told the Times. “The opportunity to shine in the spotlight that (show creator) Matt Weiner gave me—it was an absolute love letter. Christmas and New Year’s, all rolled into one.” (Read other notable obituaries.)

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