Kyle Jean-Baptiste, the first African-American and youngest person ever to play the lead role in Les Miserables on Broadway, has died in a fall, a show spokesman has said.
Kyle Jean-Baptiste, 21, fell from a fire escape after Friday evening’s performance at the Imperial Theatre, said representative Marc Thibodeau.
The actor made history performing the role of ex-convict Jean Valjean in the musical.
A statement described him as a remarkable young talent.
The notice placed on Facebook said: “The entire Les Miserables family is shocked and devastated by the sudden and tragic loss of Kyle, a remarkable young talent and tremendous person who made magic — and history — in his Broadway debut. We send our deepest condolences to his family and ask that you respect their privacy in this unimaginably difficult time.”
In May, Kyle Jean-Baptiste announced on Twitter he would be joining Cameron Mackintosh’s production of Les Miserables as Courfeyrac and understudying Jean Valjean. He first went on stage in that role on July 23.
Kyle Jean-Baptiste told Playbill magazine: “This was my dream since I was a little boy.”
His last performance in the role was on August 27.
The circumstances of Kyle Jean-Baptiste’s death are unclear. Some reports have said he was at his mother’s home at the time.