LONG TIME IMPERIAL PLAYERS MELODRAMA DIRECTOR RICHARD ROSSOMME DIES

CRIPPLE CREEK TO BE FINAL RESTING PLACE

Long time Imperial Players Melodrama director, Richard Rossomme, passed away on Sunday, June 3rd, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Cripple Creek will be his final resting place. Services and burial of ashes will be held on Wednesday, June 20th at St. Andrews in Cripple Creek at 12:00 noon, to be followed by a Celebration of Life at the Imperial Hotel’s Gold Bar Room Theatre at 1:00 p.m. Richard was born in Los Angeles, California on April 5, 1936 to thespians Earl and Jane Rossomme who met while performing in a play.

Graduated from Pasadena Playhouse and the Theatre Arts Department of San Jose State College, he was an accomplished actor, singer and director. He has appeared in Shakespeare festivals on both coasts and numerous New York and touring productions of such musicals as The Sound of Music, West Side Story, 1776, Showboat, Kiss Me Kate and The Fantasticks. In the late 60’s he was an Army Entertainment Director at Ft. Lee Virginia where his productions of Cat On a Hot Tin Roof, L’il Abner, and West Side Story brought him high praise from the Command. Richard’s first introduction to Cripple Creek was in 1960 when he appeared as Bill Lacey in The White Slave. Thus began a relationship with the town, the Imperial Hotel, and the Mackin family that spanned half a century. He returned in 1965 to play the villain in Flying Scud, and then directed the 1966, ’67, and ’68 melodrama seasons. In 1981 he directed a production of The Spoilers and remained the Imperial Players’ director for 14 consecutive seasons through 1995.

He and his wife Cindy built a summer home in the area and made many friends in the community. “Dick was an outstanding director of Classical Melodrama,” said Steve Mackin, son of Wayne and Dorothy Mackin, who formed the Imperial Players in 1948. “He knew how to stage these shows in the style of the Victorian period, without hamming them up. He still has friends in Cripple Creek and many of the actors he worked with credit him for having a positive influence in shaping their careers. He will be missed, but we are so happy he is coming home to rest with my parents, long time Gold Bar Room pianist Danny Griffith, and other friends. It’s where he belongs.” He is survived by his wife Cindy, sisters Linda Rossomme and Ann Denise Martin, nephews Scott and Lee Hendricsen, and nieces Lisa Lee, Allison Attix and Eryn Rodger.