You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Jay Thompson

Jay Thompson, a leading theatrical photographer in the Los Angeles area for more than 30 years, died March 14 of respiratory failure at Glendale Adventist Hospital. He was 68.

Thompson’s early photographic work included the stage productions of “The Rocky Horror Show,” “Hair,” “Tommy” and “Jesus Christ Superstar.” Beginning in the late 1970s, his work for the Music Center’s Mark Taper Forum included such premieres as “Angels in America,” “The Kentucky Cycle” and “Children of a Lesser God.”

Thompson, known for his keen understanding of the theatrical medium, shot more than 250 Taper productions on the mainstage and also numerous shows for the Ahmanson Theatre including “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?,” “The Heidi Chronicles” and “Smokey Joe’s Cafe.”

Born and reared in East Orange, N.J., he served in the army as a radio announcer in Panama during the 1950s. Later, while working as a publicist at Universal Studios, he concluded he could do better photo work than the photogs he was hiring.

He was also known for celebrity portraits, including those of Bette Davis, Eleanor Roosevelt and Lucille Ball. In addition, Thompson was an active member of the Hollywood Revitalization Committee from 1974-1978.

Services will be held at 7 p.m. on Monday at the Music Center Annex, Rehearsal Room A, 601 W. Temple St.

More Scene

  • 'Patrick Melrose' TV show premiere

    'Patrick Melrose': Benedict Cumberbatch Talks Making 'Passion Project' at Premiere

    Jay Thompson, a leading theatrical photographer in the Los Angeles area for more than 30 years, died March 14 of respiratory failure at Glendale Adventist Hospital. He was 68. Thompson’s early photographic work included the stage productions of “The Rocky Horror Show,” “Hair,” “Tommy” and “Jesus Christ Superstar.” Beginning in the late 1970s, his work […]

  • 'Cobra Kai' premiere

    ‘Cobra Kai’: Why Ralph Macchio Revisited 'Karate Kid' Character After 30 Years

    Jay Thompson, a leading theatrical photographer in the Los Angeles area for more than 30 years, died March 14 of respiratory failure at Glendale Adventist Hospital. He was 68. Thompson’s early photographic work included the stage productions of “The Rocky Horror Show,” “Hair,” “Tommy” and “Jesus Christ Superstar.” Beginning in the late 1970s, his work […]

  • Jennifer LopezTime 100 Gala - Red

    Time 100 Gala: J. Lo 'Feels Naked,' Shawn Mendes Performs, Kesha Hugs Parkland Survivors

    Jay Thompson, a leading theatrical photographer in the Los Angeles area for more than 30 years, died March 14 of respiratory failure at Glendale Adventist Hospital. He was 68. Thompson’s early photographic work included the stage productions of “The Rocky Horror Show,” “Hair,” “Tommy” and “Jesus Christ Superstar.” Beginning in the late 1970s, his work […]

  • Robert Downey Jr'Avengers: Infinity War' film

    'Avengers: Infinity War' Premiere Draws Largest Contingent of Marvel Superheroes

    Jay Thompson, a leading theatrical photographer in the Los Angeles area for more than 30 years, died March 14 of respiratory failure at Glendale Adventist Hospital. He was 68. Thompson’s early photographic work included the stage productions of “The Rocky Horror Show,” “Hair,” “Tommy” and “Jesus Christ Superstar.” Beginning in the late 1970s, his work […]

  • 'The Week Of' film premiere

    'The Week Of' Director Talks Reuniting With Adam Sandler After 'SNL'

    Jay Thompson, a leading theatrical photographer in the Los Angeles area for more than 30 years, died March 14 of respiratory failure at Glendale Adventist Hospital. He was 68. Thompson’s early photographic work included the stage productions of “The Rocky Horror Show,” “Hair,” “Tommy” and “Jesus Christ Superstar.” Beginning in the late 1970s, his work […]

  • Beautycon Festival

    Laverne Cox, Paris Hilton Promote Self-Love at Beautycon NYC

    Jay Thompson, a leading theatrical photographer in the Los Angeles area for more than 30 years, died March 14 of respiratory failure at Glendale Adventist Hospital. He was 68. Thompson’s early photographic work included the stage productions of “The Rocky Horror Show,” “Hair,” “Tommy” and “Jesus Christ Superstar.” Beginning in the late 1970s, his work […]

  • Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

    The Duchess of Cambridge Gives Birth to Baby Boy

    Jay Thompson, a leading theatrical photographer in the Los Angeles area for more than 30 years, died March 14 of respiratory failure at Glendale Adventist Hospital. He was 68. Thompson’s early photographic work included the stage productions of “The Rocky Horror Show,” “Hair,” “Tommy” and “Jesus Christ Superstar.” Beginning in the late 1970s, his work […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content