(Robert Berkvist’s article appeared in The New York Times, 10/7.)

Marian Seldes, a regal personality in New York theater for more than half a century in plays ranging from whodunits to the work of Tennessee Williams, Samuel Beckett and, especially, Edward Albee, died on Tuesday at her home in New York. She was 86.

Her sister-in-law Susan Shreve confirmed her death.

Tall, angular and dark-haired, with a commanding, patrician voice and liquid gestures, Ms. Seldes could dominate any scene — so much so that she was sometimes criticized for overacting. She shrugged at that: She knew very well that she cut a distinctive figure.


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