Jay Garner (born James H. Garner Jr; January 17, 1929 – January 21, 2011) was an American actor.
Life and Career
Born James Garner in 1929, he changed his first name to Jay upon entering Actors Equity since there was already a James Garner in the union (film star James Garner of Murphy's Romance and The Rockford Files). Garner was best known to theatre audiences for his diverse character roles. He created the role of the "side-stepping" Governor of Texas in the musical The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, originated the role of the priggish anti-homosexual politician Eduord Dindon in La Cage Aux Folles and had the lead role in Red, Hot and Maddox. He was a long time Benjamin Franklin in the musical hit 1776, a role he also reprised on tour and in various stock productions.in 1986 he took over the role of Sir john Tremayne from Tony winner George S. Irving in the original Broadway staging of Me and My Girl. His last Broadway performance was Horace Vandergelder in the 1994 revival of Hello, Dolly! starring Carol Channing. Television audiences know him as Admiral Asimov in the second season of Buck Rogers in the 25th Century .