In his 30 years at CBS-TV in New York, Mr. Allen worked with Dick Van Dyke, Dom DeLuise, Carol Burnett and other stars on variety shows, soap operas and Presidential campaigns.
Among the programs he produced and directed were “The Garry Moore Show,” “The Way to Go,” “Black Heritage” and “Sunrise Semester.”
Mr. Allen, a native of Cambridge, Mass., began his working life as an actor in New York, where he played a boxer in “Walk Hard” with the American Negro Theater in Harlem. In the 1950’s he shifted careers, becoming a stage manager, first on Broadway — for the Maxwell Anderson-Kurt Weill musical “Lost in the Stars” — then in television. He was a stage manager for “The Ed Sullivan Show” and “As the World Turns” before working his way up to producer and director. He was the first black member of the Directors Guild of America.
After his retirement in 1989, Mr. Allen resumed his acting career, working on a new play by Ossie Davis at Brown University in Providence, R.I., and reading the newspaper on “Audio Journal,” a New England radio show for people unable to read.
He is survived by his wife, Margaret; two daughters, Karen Baxter of Providence and Jennifer Ivey of Queens; a brother, Frank Lucas of Sudbury, Mass., and five grandchildren.
Courtesy The New York Times