b. 20 March 1931, New York City, New York, USA. An early Broadway engagement was understudy to Sydney Chaplin in Bells Are Ringing (1956). During the long run, Linden replaced Chaplin, playing opposite the show’s star, Judy Holliday. In 1964 he played in Something More!, which starred Barbara Cook. The following year he was standby for roles in On A Clear Day You Can See Forever, by Frederick Loewe and Burton Lane. In the musical Ilya Darling (1967), Linden played No Face and understudied the role of Tonio. For The Education Of H*Y*M*A*N K*A*P*L*A*N (1968), a musical that ran for a little over three weeks, he played Yissel Fishbein and also understudied Tom Bosley in the title role. Linden was in the play, Three Men On A Horse (1969) and then had his greatest success in The Rothschilds (1970). In this musical, Linden played the role of Mayer Rothschild, opposite Jill Clayburgh as Hannah Cohen and with Keene Curtis in multiple roles. Also in the show were Paul Hecht, Leila Martin, David Garfield, Allan Gruet, Timothy Jerome and Chris Sarandon. The music for the show was by Jerry Bock, lyrics by Sheldon Harnick; the songs sung by Linden included ‘One Room’, ‘Sons’, both of which were duets with Martin, ‘He Tossed A Coin’ and ‘In My Own Lifetime’. The show opened at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre where it enjoyed a run of more than 500 performances, eventually closing on 1 January 1972. For his striking performance as the dynamic prime mover in the influential banking empire Linden won 1971’s Tony Award as Best Actor In A Musical.
Linden took the leading role in a revival of the play The Sign In Sidney Brustein’s Window (1972) and then played Sid Sorokin in a revival of The Pajama Game, singing ‘A New Town Is A Blue Town’ and ‘Hey There’. With Barbara McNair he also sang the duets ‘Small Talk’ and ‘There Once Was A Man’. Later on Broadway, Linden was a cast replacement in the plays I’m Not Rappaport (1985) and The Sisters Rosensweig (1993), and he also appeared in the play The Gathering (2001). He appeared briefly as a replacement in a Tony Award-winning revival of Cabaret that had been running since 1998. This version of the show starred Natasha Richardson as Sally Bowles and Ron Rifkin as Herr Schultz, the role that Linden filled between April and August 2002.