Character actor Philip “Fyvush” Finkel, whose acting career started over 80 years ago, is dead at 93, his son confirmed to the New York Times. Finkel is best known for his late-in-life television turns in David E. Kelley shows Picket Fences and Boston Public, but he first hopped in front of an audience, and adopted the stage name “Finkel,” at just nine years old in a Yiddish Theater production. He would continue to perform, mostly in Yiddish, for decades before making his Broadway debut, at age 43, in Fiddler on the Roof. Finkel went on to perform in such movies as Brighton Beach Memoirs, Nixon, and A Serious Man. His awards and honors included an Emmy for his part as the lawyer Douglas Wambaugh in Picket Fences, an Obie Award for his performance in New York Shakespeare Festival’s 1988 Café Clown, and a star in the Yiddish Theater Hall of Fame outside Manhattan’s Second Avenue Deli. He died in his New York apartment after suffering from heart problems for several months.
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