Jonathan Bixby, Emmy-winning costume designer and a founding member of the Drama Dept., died Sunday April 29 of complications from colon cancer at the Cabrini Hospice in New York City. He was 41.
Bixby was born in the Philadelphia suburb of Media, and moved to New York City to enroll in the Lester Polikoff School of Set and Costume Design. He served as the costume designer on most of the Drama Dept.’s productions, including “The Torch-Bearers,” “The Country Club,” “As Bees to Honey Drown” and “June Moon.” His Gotham credits also include “Strike Up the Band” and “The Tenderloin” at City Center’s Encores!, “The Coconuts” at the American Place Theatre and several productions at the Jean Cocteau Repertory.
Bixby is currently represented Off Broadway by the musical “Urinetown,” for which he created the costumes with his longtime colleague, Greg Gale, who will continue the business they created 15 years ago.
Beyond New York, the designer created costumes for such regional theater companies as the Geffen Playhouse, Berkshire Theatre Festival, McCarter Theatre and others. He also designed for the long-touring international Cirque Ingenieux as well as several touring companies of major Broadway shows.
Bixby won an Emmy for his work on “All My Children.” He also served as costume designer on “One Life to Live.”
He is survived by his longtime partner, Bryan Bantry and his mother, sister and brother.
Donations can be made to the Drama Dept., which Bixby co-founded with playwright Douglas Carter Beane.