An operatic soprano, Luker portrayed Magnolia, the daughter who marries a sleazy riverboat gambler, in Show Boat, which opened on Broadway in 1994; the librarian Marian in The Music Man, which began in 2001; and Winifred Banks in Mary Poppins. She starred in that one from 2006-10.
Luker also appeared on the big screen in writer-director David Chase's Not Fade Away (2012) and on television in such series as Boardwalk Empire, Elementary and NCIS: New Orleans.
One of four children, Rebecca Joan Luker was born on April 17, 1961, in Birmingham, Alabama. She graduated from the University of Montevallo in 1984 after spending time with the Michigan Opera Theater, then made her Broadway debut in 1989 stepping in for Sarah Brightman as the chorus girl Christine in a revival of The Phantom of the Opera.
She also appeared on the Great White Way in the musicals The Secret Garden in 1991-93, The Sound of Music (as Maria) in 1998-99, Nine in 2003, Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella (as the fairy godmother Marie) in 2013 and Fun Home in 2015-16.
She married Burstein in 2000. Survivors also include her stepsons, Zachary and Alexander.
"She is strong but searching for answers as she sees her body failing her," Burstein wrote about his wife in his August THR piece. "And yet she has hope. I don't know what to feel. I've always been the more pragmatic one. She has always been so sure. I can't deny her hope. I have some, too. But I have to keep preparing for the worst. And I hate that I am preparing for the worst. But we are hoping our hopes come true."
This article was originally published by The Hollywood Reporter.