Elizabeth Ann Crumb

Obituary for Elizabeth Ann Crumb

May 25, 1950 - October 31, 2019
Media, Pennsylvania | Age 69

Actress, Musician, Humanitarian, Lover of Animals, Woman of the World


Ann Crumb, actress, musician, woman of the world, humanitarian, champion of the lost, and friend to all, died at age sixty-nine, surrounded by her family, her friends, and her beloved dogs. Although she was successful in every endeavor she attempted in life, she was humble and thankful for the talents and opportunities that she had. In the later years of her life, she dedicated all of her energies to saving the lost and discarded animals that needed her.
It was not the acclaim or awards, the accolades or the praise that came as a natural reaction to her talents, that made Ann a success in life; it was her kindness. It would be easy to miss who she was as a person when one considers the amount and quality of her contribution to the Arts. She was born into a family that was not impressed with what they would eventually accomplish or earn. She was not swayed by wealth or status. She was taught that hard work, in the service of the most valuable human endeavors, was the mark of true success in life. She exemplified every aspect of that creed.

It was her family and her loving friends that were the center of Ann's life, cut short, but not wasted on the frivolities and excesses of the day. Her qualities were many but her love for her family, friends, and the animals that enlivened her life were her treasures.

Ann Crumb was the daughter of piano teacher and loving mother Liz Crumb and composer George Crumb, sister of composer David Crumb, and loving friend to her brother Peter (Pete) Crumb, who was her shining light and foundation. Her family rose from humble beginnings in West Virginia guided by a love for music, family, and hard work. They may have been short on the niceties of life but they provided each other with the qualities of character that marked their family, and each of them, individually, as special.

Ann's early years in music were dedicated to the violin, at which she excelled from an early age, until a fall from a horse and a broken bowing arm ended her hopes of a career as an instrumentalist. But that tragedy in her life did not stop her. She earned a degree in Speech and Language Pathology from the University of Michigan, where she began her acting studies. After college she moved to New York, as many aspiring actresses do, to make a living while dreaming of greatness in the American theatre.

Ann starred as Rose Vibert in the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical ASPECTS OF LOVE, first in London's West End and subsequently on Broadway. She received a Tony nomination for her performance in the title role in the musical version of ANNA KARENINA at Circle in the Square, and co-starred in the Off-Broadway musicals INSIDE OUT and JOHNNY GUITAR. In London, in addition to ASPECTS OF LOVE, she starred as Louisa in the concert version of NINE (with Jonathan Pryce) and as Paula in THE GOODBYE GIRL. Her numerous regional appearances included EVITA (title role), SUNSET BOULEVARD (Norma Desmond), CHESS (Florence), MASTER CLASS (Maria Callas), SOUVENIR (Florence Foster Jenkins), OTHER DESERT CITIES (Silda), and CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF (Maggie). For the past several years, in addition to her theatre work, she sang vocal music composed by her father, Pulitzer Prize-winning George Crumb, all over the world, recorded under the Bridge Music label.

Throughout her life Ann was a tireless dog rescuer, saving hundreds of dogs from kill shelters,
and spearheaded the effort to place the dogs orphaned by Hurricane Katrina into homes all over the country. She founded and was president of The Rescue Express, placing more than 2500 abandoned animals in safe, secure, and loving homes. She considered this her life's work. She will be sorely missed.

A memorial is planned for Sunday, Dec. 29, at 5 p.m. at the Media Theatre, 104 E. State St. Media, PA 19063. Information is available at 610-891-0100.

In lieu of flowers please send donations to:
Rescue Express
240 Kirk La, Media, PA 19063

Suggested Memorial Donations

  • In lieu of flowers please send donations to:
  • Rescue Express
    240 Kirk Lane
    Media, PA 19063

Message from the Family

Thank you for your support during this difficult time.
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Arrangements By

Cavanagh Patterson Family Funeral Homes

43 E. Baltimore Ave
Media, PA 19063
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