Pleasant theatrical encounter

So Mrs. B. and I went to a small theatrical production last night, and one of the two actors was quite familiar in name and appearance, but I couldn’t fully place him. (This company tends to use much lower-tier actors, so known names aren’t too common.) It wasn’t until I had a moment to look him up before I realized who he was.

Kenneth Tigar has never had a starring role, as far as I can tell, but he’s been in absolutely every TV show and many films since he was part of the ensemble of wonderful nuts in Barney Miller. As I ran down his 150 or so IMDb entries, I actually remembered a good half of them or more - all small roles but as well-defined and remembered as those Barney Miller, Night Court and other crazies. It was one of his most recent roles that made me smile, though… he’s the old man who stands up to Loki in The Avengers. (“There are *always *men like you.”) A ten-second role that provided an essential dramatic anchor in that sublimely-wrought movie.

Anyway, it gave me a thrill to have spent two hours in close company - third row, small theater - with someone not a star, but one of those enduring and polished cogs that make films work.

And he’s a Harvard Ph.D. in Germanic languages, highly regarded around the world for some of his stage translations. Good choice to play a dying Freud…

What’s the name of the play?

ETA: Here’s the scene from The Avengers mentioned in the OP.

I’m guessing Freud’s Last Session.

Yes, that’s it. Fascinating production and both actors were excellent - but Tigar had that indefinable extra gloss I’ve only seen on truly accomplished and dedicated actors.

Barney Miller… was he the toymaker who had a colleague arrested for stealing his “Ooze”?

He played the recurring role of Mr. Kopeckne. Once he thought he was possessed by a demon, once he was afraid he was a werewolf. It was usually something supernatural.

He’s one of my favorite character actors.

He also thought he was Jesus once on Barney Miller. His cellmate was busted for selling dope, but it tested out to be powdered sugar. Tigar’s smile at that point, trying to take credit, was one of my favorite moments in the show.