Fiddler on the Roof Star Theodore Bikel Dies at 91
07/21/2015 AT 06:45 PM EDT
The prolific actor and musician passed away at the age of 91 in Los Angeles on Tuesday, Variety reports.
Bikel's wide-ranging career spanned the stage, film and television. Onstage, his roles included Fiddler on the Roof's Tevye, the iconic patriarch whom he played more times than any other actor, and The Sound of Music's Captain von Trapp, which earned him a Tony nomination in 1960. He nabbed his first Tony nod in 1958 for his performance in The Rope Dancers.
Among Bikel's many film highlights were parts in The Pride and the Passion, The Enemy Below, Moulin Rouge, The African Queen, I Want to Live! and My Fair Lady. In 1959, he received his sole Academy Award nomination for his turn in The Defiant Ones.
Over the decades, he appeared on the small screen in shows such as The Twilight Zone, Little House on the Prairie, Gunsmoke and Hawaii Five-O. He also assumed the presidencies of the Actors' Equity and the Associated Actors and Artistes of America.
Bikel's life began as dramatically as some of the movies and shows in which he starred. Born in Vienna, Bikel and his Jewish family escaped to Palestine in 1938 when the Nazis entered Austria. He seriously considered returning to his second home to fight for Israeli independence in 1948 but did not do so.
Bikel leaves behind his fourth wife, two sons, two stepsons and three grandchildren, according to Variety.