Hinton Battle dies aged 67: Original The Wiz actor and three-time Tony Award winner passes away after lengthy illness

Actor and singer Hinton Battle has died aged 67 following a lengthy illness.

The German-born American star – who originated the role of the scarecrow in Broadway’s The Wiz, passed away on Tuesday at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, a representative confirmed to THR.

Battle made his Broadway debut in 1975 in the the original production of Broadway’s The Wiz – a role taken on by Michael Jackson in the 1978 film.

He won three Tony Awards in the featured actor in a musical category for Sophisticated Ladies (1981), The Tap Dance Kid (1984) and Miss Saigon (1991).

He played Wayne in 2007 movie musical Dreamgirls alongside Jennifer Hudson and Beyonce – having starred in the Broadway musical – and landed SAG and Critics Choice nominations for his work in the ensemble of the hit film.  

Actor and singer Hinton Battle has died aged 67 following a lengthy illness

He played Wayne in 2007 movie musical Dreamgirls alongside Jennifer Hudson - who paid emotional tribute to him

He played Wayne in 2007 movie musical Dreamgirls alongside Jennifer Hudson – who paid emotional tribute to him

Oscar-winner Hudson took to X to pay tribute to him and fellow late Broadway star Chita Rivera, writing: ‘We lost two irreplaceable Broadway icons this week. Chita Rivera and Hinton Battle ! I’ll always be grateful for their unique artistry and impact and the way our lives intersected! Rest well, legends!’

Hinton is survived by his sisters, Eddie and Lettie Battle and his nieces, nephews and cousins.

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