History Making Broadway Actor Kyle Jean-Baptiste Dies At 21

Movies & TV

The Broadway community is rocked at the unexpected death of  Kyle Jean-Baptiste who died after falling off his mother’s fire escape. He was 21.

Jean Baptiste made history as the first African-American to play Jean Valjean in the famed Les Miserables Broadway play.  The actor started out as an understudy, and later stepped into the role becoming the youngest actor to do so.

Set in early 19th century France, Les Mis centers around the protagonist Jean Valjean who was sentenced to prison after stealing a loaf of bread for his sister’s starving child. The role has been played by notable actors including Hugh Jackman and Liam Neeson.

Broadway World confirmed Jean-Baptiste’s passing in a statement.

“The entire Les Miserables family is shocked and devastated by the sudden and tragic loss of Kyle, a remarkable young talent and tremendous person who made magic — and history — in his Broadway debut. We send our deepest condolences to his family and ask that you respect their privacy in this unimaginably difficult time.”