He additionally started creating as a playwright. In 1965, an Off-Broadway double-bill manufacturing of his satirical one-act comedies “Happy Ending” and “Day of Absence” grew to become a success, bringing him a Drama Desk Award for excellent new playwright. Surviving a transit strike, the manufacturing ran for 15 months.
Mr. Ward had lead roles in many performs, together with “Ceremonies in Dark Old Men,” for which he gained the Drama Desk Award, and “The Brownsville Raid,” about an incident of navy racial injustice in a Texas city. Clive Barnes, reviewing “Brownsville” for The Times, wrote “Ward, who, to be frank, I usually admire more as a director than an actor, has never been better.”
Among his many awards and honors, Mr. Ward acquired the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award. In 1996, he was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame.
He continued to write down into his later years. Last March, he revealed “The Haitian Chronicles,” a collection of three performs that he had been engaged on for the reason that 1970s, all centered on the Haitian Revolution, which threw off colonial rule in the early 1800s. His spouse mentioned that he had thought of the mission his magnum opus and that she and others have been hoping to have the performs staged in New York with alumni from the Negro Ensemble Company.
In addition to Ms. Ward, whom he married in 1966, he’s survived by their two kids, Elizabeth Ward-Cuprill and Douglas Powell Ward, and three grandchildren.
At the Negro Ensemble Company, Mr. Ward usually performed matchmaker in connecting actors to roles, looking for out alternatives for folks whom he knew had not been getting a lot work.
“Doug never saw N.E.C. as a place to feature himself,” the playwright Steve Carter, who was a manufacturing coordinator for the corporate, mentioned in a telephone interview for this obituary in 2017. “He was always looking for new people.”