International Goodwill Cultural Ambassador, Best-selling author of “ActingTeachers of America,” and US State Department Fulbright Specialist. Presently, Ronald is in his second decade performing in his solo play, “LET IT BE ART! Harold Clurman’s Life of Passion” bringing to life, Harold Clurman, considered “the elder Statesman of the American Theatre.” His internationally-celebrated play received two critically-acclaimed Off-Broadway productions, across 5 continents to 23 countries, and in 20 states across America – from Kathmandu’s International Theatre Festival to the Alabama School of Fine Arts, from Bangkok’s Patravadi Theatre to the Palace Dar el-Majzen of the Casbah in Tangier, from Paysundu’s MerCoSur International Theatre Festival in Uruguay to the Palace of Culture in Minsk, Belarus. He has appeared in many plays Off-Broadway, and in regional theaters across America as the Stage Manager in “Our Town,” Captain Keller in “The Miracle Worker,” Harry Berlin in “LUV,” and Polonius in “Hamlet.” Ronald has had roles in over a hundred films and television shows, including being cast oppositeAngelica Huston in “When in Rome,” with Sean Connery and Dustin Hoffman in “Family Business” directed by Sidney Lumet, “In & Out,” as Milton Sterns in the PBS American Playhouse production of “O’Keefe & Stieglitz: A Marriage” with Christopher Plummer and Jane Alexander, opposite Ralph Fiennes in “Quiz Show” directed by Robert Redford, and in the Japanese film, “Homeless” opposite Yoko Ono. An internationally renowned director, his production of the hit comedy, “LUV,” continues being performed in repertory its 4th sold-out year at Sarajevo’s prestigious Chamber 55 Theatre, starring Zana Marjanovic, the lead in Angelina Jolie’s film, “In the Land of Bread and Honey.” Mr. Rand is the Founder/ Publisher & Editor-in-Chief of “The Soul of the American Actor,” now in its 19th year, the only newspaper in the world dedicated to the art of the theater and the craft of the actor, online and in print. He wrote the libretto for a new opera, “IBSEN,” composer-Hartmut von Lieres.
Ph.D Professor of Directing, Acting, History of Theater at Berkeley University of California, and he was Professor of Theater, Directing, Acting, History of Theater at New York University. Author of “Dada Performance,” “Erik Jan Hanussen,” “Expressionist Texts,” ‘The Grand Guignol: The Theatre of Horror and Terror,” “Lazzi: The Comic Routines of the Commedia dell’Arte,” “Mikhoels the Wise,” “The Seven Addictions and Five Professions of Anita Berber,” “The Stanislavsky Technique in America,” “The Stanislavsky Technique: Russia,” “Voluptuous Panic: The Erotic World of Weimar Berlin,” and co-writer of “Meyerhold, Eisenstein and Biomechanics: Actor Training in Revolutionary Russia,” as well as one hundred and thirty articles and entries on American, French, German, Italian, Russian, and Yiddish theater and cinema. Director of over twenty productions in Frankfurt, Houston, New York City, Paris, and Zurich. Former Associate Editor of “The Drama Review.” He also taught at Lee Strasberg Institute, Michael Chekhov Studio, and Yale University.
F. MURRAY ABRAHAM MARY ALICE SELMA ALISPAHI NICOLE ANSARI LUCIE ARNAZ PHOEBE BRAND CAROL BURNETT LEN CARIOU CAROL CHANNING TINA CHEN BRIAN COX OSSIE DAVIS RUBY DEE ANDRÉ DE SHIELDS BEN GAZZARA LEE GRANT JOEL GREY JULIE HARRIS STEPHEN HENDERSON KIM HUNTER DRAGAN JOVIČIĆ RANDALL DUK KIM SHIRLEY KNIGHT STEPHEN LANG LAURENCE LUCKINBILL JUDITH MALINA JAN MAXWELL RUE McCLANAHAN PATRICIA NEAL JERRY ORBACH ANGELICA PAGE LUISE RAINER TONY RANDALL PHYLICIA RASHAD CHITA RIVERA MARIAN SELDES SABERA SHAIK SYLVIA SIDNEY KATE VALK BEN VEREEN
F. MURRAY ABRAHAM
Widely known for his Academy Award-winning portrayal as Antonio Salieri in “Amadeus,” he made his Broadway debut in “The Man in the Glass Booth,” directed by Harold Pinter. Mr. Abraham’s other appearances on Broadway include “It’s Only a Play,” receiving a Drama Desk Award nomination, Terrence McNally’s “Bad Habits,” “Where Has Tommy Flowers Gone?,” “Triumph of Love,” as Roy Cohn in “Angels in America,” “Teibele and Her Demon” receiving a Drama Desk Award, and “The Ritz.” His theater work includes “Waiting for Godot” directed by Mike Nichols, with Robin Williams, Steve Martin and Bill Irwin at Lincoln Center Theatre, “Uncle Vanya,” receiving an Obie award, “A Life in the Theatre” receiving a Drama Desk Award, as Nathan the Wise, as Shylock in “The Merchant of Venice” in New York City, on a National Tour with Theatre for a New Audience, at The Swan Theatre, as part of the Royal Shakespeare Company, and is the only American to perform in “The Jew of Malta” in rep with “The Merchant of Venice.” His film appearances include “Scarface” with Al Pacino, “All the President’s Men,” “Star Trek: Insurrection,” Gus Van Sant’s “Finding Forrester,” “The Name of the Rose” with Sean Connery, “The Bridge of San Luis Rey,” Coen Brothers’ “Inside Llewyn Davis,” “Perestroika,” “Barbarossa,” “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” and many European films. His television appearances include as a cast member of “Homeland,” receiving an Emmy and SAG award, “The Good Wife,” and as Blessed John Henry in “The Unseen World.” He was the primary narrator the PBS series, “Nature” narrating thirty-two episodes. Mr. Abraham’ award include the “Premio per gli Italiani del Mondo” Prize, and was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame. Mr. Abraham taught theatre at Brooklyn College.
Her memorable performances on Broadway & Off-Broadway include opposite James Earl Jones in August Wilson’s “Fences” receiving the Tony Award and the Drama Desk Award, “No Place to be Somebody,” “The Shadow Box,” “Zooman and The Sign,” “Richard III,” and as Queen Bessie in Emily Mann’s “Having Our Say” with Gloria Foster as the Delaney sisters receiving a Tony Award nomination and Drama Desk nomination. Her film and television work includes as the Oracle in “The Matrix Revolutions,” “The Education of Sonny Carson,” “Just an Old Sweet Song,” “The Color of Friendship,” “Beat Street,” “The Inkwell,” “Awakenings,” “Down in the Delta,” “The Wishing Tree,” “A Different World,” “Touched by an Angel,” and “I’ll Fly Away” receiving an Emmy Award. Ms. Alice was inducted into the American Hall of Fame.
One of the foremost theater and film actresses in Eastern Europe, Ms. Alispahic is a permanent member of the Sarajevo War Theatre (SARTR) since 1998 – her roles included Beatrice in “The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds,” as “Anna Karenina,” Katarina Kosaca in “The Last Bosnian Queen,” Sylvia Plath in “Longing and Death of Sylvia Plath,” She performed in London with the Complicite Theatre in “Caucasian Chalk Circle,” “Women of Troy” (Royal National Theatre), “Blood Wedding” at the Young Vic Theatre, and as Andromache in an adaptation of Euripides’ Trojan “Women in Sarajevo Trilogy” (Royal Festival Hall). She has performed in many productions at the National Theatre in Sarajevo. She received numerous awards including for her performance as Carmela in “Ay, Carmela,” which she has performed since 1999, the ‘Woman of the Year in the Arts” Award and the International Center for Peace Sarajevo’s “Freedom” Award. Ms. Alispahic has taught as a Professor of Acting at Tuzla’s Academy of Dramatic Arts, and holds a Ph.D. in literary history sciences.
On Broadway and at London’s Royal Court Theatre, Ms. Ansari originated the role of Lenka in Tom Stoppard’s play, “Rock N’ Roll,” directed by Trevor Nunn. In Europe, she was a member of the internationally-acclaimed Theatre du Soleil, directed by Ariane Mnouchkine, in Paris, and on a tour throughout Europe. A founding member of the Shakespeare company Berlin, Ms. Ansari also starred in many productions of the Public Theatre in Vienna, among other theatres including as Roxanne in “Cyrano de Bergerac,” Irma in the musical, “Irma la Douce,” as Berenice, as “Romy, I” which she also co-wrote, and Alma Mahler in “Alma.” Off-Broadway, she appeared in “Shakespeare’s Sister” at La Mama E.T.C. directed by Irina Brook, also touring in French across France, and starred in “I am Antigone” at Theatre for a New City. In regional theatre, Ms. Ansari appeared in Marivaux’s “Island of Slaves” at Shakespeare and Company, in “Sinners” directed by Brian Cox in Boston & Vermont, as Queen Gertrude in “Hamlet” and in “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead” at the Mirror Rep’s Greensboro Arts Alliance Summer Theatre. In Los Angeles, she performed in Moscow Art director Valery Belyakovic’s version of Gorky’s “Lower Depth: The Shelter” receiving an Ovation award nomination. Her film and television appearances includes Steven Soderbergh’s “Side Effects,” “Blumenthal” and “As Good as Dead,” both she also co-produced,” HBO’s “Deadwood,” The Blacklist,” “Herzog,” “Inspector Rex,” and the TV series, “Einstein.”
Celebrating her 50th year in Show Business, Ms. Arnaz made her Broadway debut in “They’re Playing Our Song” receiving the World Theatre Award, the Outer Critics Circle Award, and the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award. On Broadway she also appeared in “Lost in Yonkers,” “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” and “Pippin.” Her theater appearances include the international tour of “My One and Only” with Tommy Tune, receiving the Sarah Siddons Award, “Grace & Glorie,” “Pippin,” “Lost in Yonkers,” “They’re Playing Our Song,” “Seesaw,” “Sonia Flew,” “The Witches of Eastwick,” “Vanities,” “Annie Get Your Gun,” “Cabaret,” and as Maria Callas in “Master Class.” She has co-starred with her husband, Laurence Luckinbill in “Educating Rita,” “The Guardsman,” and “Whose Life is it, Anyway?” Her television appearances include “Here’s Lucy” for seven years, “The Lucie Arnaz Show,” “Sons and Daughters” and “Who Is the Black Dalia?” Ms. Arnaz’s film appearances include starring opposite Laurence Olivier and Neil Diamond in “The Jazz Singer” receiving a Globe Award nomination, “Billy Jack Goes to Washington” and “Second Thoughts.” She debuted her nightclub act at Rainbow & Stars in New York City, and co-produced with her husband, “Lucy & Desi: A Home Movie” for NBC, receiving an Emmy Award. Ms. Arnaz is the daughter of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz.
Ms. Ashley received the Tony Award and a Theatre World Award on Broadway in “Take Her, She’s Mine,” directed by George Abbott. Her other notable Broadway appearances include opposite Robert Redford in the original production of Neil Simon’s “Barefoot in the Park,” directed by Mike Nichols, receiving a Tony Award nomination, “Agnes of God” opposite Geraldine Page and Amanda Plummer receiving the Albert Einstein Award, “Caesar and Cleopatra” with Rex Harrison, “August: Osage County,” “Dividing the Estate,” “Enchanted April,” and Gore Vidal’s “The Best Man” with James Earl Jones. She has starred in many Tennessee Williams’ plays, including “Eight by Tenn,” the 1973 Broadway production of “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” receiving a Tony Award nomination, “Suddenly Last Summer,” “The Red Devil Battery Sign,” “The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore,” “Out Cry,” “Sweet Bird of Youth” at Washington’s Shakespeare Theatre receiving a Helen Hayes Award, “The Glass Menagerie” at Hartford Stage, Boston’s A.R.T. and the Alley Theatre, receiving the Boston Globe Critic's Award, and “Night of the Iguana” on Broadway. Off-Broadway she played Isadora Duncan in “When She Danced,” and Edward Albee’s “Me, Myself and I.” National tours and regional appearances include “The Enchanted” at the Kennedy Center, “Master Class” in Toronto, Regina in “The Little Foxes” at the Shakespeare Theatre, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf,” “Eleemosynary” directed by Burt Reynolds, and “Mrs. Warren's Profession.” Her film appearances included “The Carpetbaggers,” “Ship of Fools” receiving a Golden Globe nomination, “Rancho Deluxe,” “Marriage of a Young Stockbroker,” “Cathouse Thursday” with Lee Marvin, “Coma,” “Dragnet,” “Vampire Kiss,” “A Man of Passion” with Anthony Quinn, “Happiness,” “Stagecoach” with Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash, “Severance,” “The Cake Eaters,” and as Aunt Mimi in HBO’s “Treme.” On television Ms. Ashley’s appearances include “The Rope” receiving a Cable ACE Award nomination, “Svengali” with Peter O'Toole and Jodie Foster, Sandburg's “Lincoln,” “Evening Shade” with Burt Reynolds receiving an Emmy nomination, and “The Tonight Show” with Johnny Carson. She authored “Actress: Postcards from the Road,” and recorded the audio book of John Lahr's “Tennessee Williams: Mad Pilgrimage of the Flesh.”
Since 1980, Alec Baldwin has appeared in numerous productions on stage, in films and on television. He has received a Tony Award nomination for “A Streetcar Named Desire” in 1992, and an Academy Award nomination for “The Cooler” in 2004, and has won two Emmy awards, three Golden Globes and seven consecutive Screen Actors Guild Awards as Best Actor in a Comedy Series for his role on NBC’s “30 Rock.” His films include “The Hunt for Red October,” “Glengarry Glen Ross,” “Malice,” “The Edge,” “It’s Complicated,” “Blue Jasmine,” “Still Alice,” and “Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation,” among many others. Mr. Baldwin is a 1994 BFA graduate of Tisch School of the Arts at New York University and received an honorary doctorate in 2010. He is Co-Chairman of the Board of the Hamptons International Film Festival. He is also the radio announcer for the New York Philharmonic. Mr. Baldwin has two daughters, Ireland Elliese Baldwin and Carmen Gabriela Baldwin.
An original member of famed Group Theatre of the 1930s in America, called “the bravest and single most significant experiment in the history of American Theater.” When The Group Theatre began presenting productions on Broadway, she originated the roles of Hennie Berger in Clifford Odets’ “Awake and Sing,” Anna in “Golden Boy,” Minny Belle in Kurt Weill’s “Johnny Johnson,” Florrie in the first production of “Waiting for Lefty,” and Barbara Dennin in “Men in White.” She appeared Off-Broadway in “A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man” and “The World of Sholem Aleichem.” Ms. Brand became an acting teacher and taught acting in California at The Actor’s Lab. Among the students included Marilyn Monroe, Ruby Dee, Ossie Davis, Shelley Winters, Tony Curtis, Janet Leigh, Lloyd Bridges, Patricia Neal and Larry Parks. In the early 1960s, she co-founded Theater in the Street, an acting troupe that presented classic plays in both English and Spanish in New York's poor neighborhoods. In 1969, she toured across America with her husband, acclaimed Shakespearian actor, Morris Carnovsky, in Tyrone Guthrie's production of “Lamp at Midnight.” At age 86, Ms. Brand appeared in Louis Malle’s film, “Vanya on 42nd Street.” A week before her death, at age 96, Phoebe Brand held her last acting class.
(The interview was conducted in 1998).
One of the most beloved performers in entertainment, known as the ‘Queen of Comedy,” her long-running TV variety show, "The Carol Burnett Show" on CBS ran for eleven years, was seen by thirty million viewers each week, and received twenty-five Emmy Awards. It is one of the most honored shows in television history. In 1957, she appeared on the New York circuit of cabarets and nightclubs, most notably for a hit parody number called “I Made a Fool of Myself over John Foster Dulles,” which she performed on The Tonight Show. Achieving her first success on Broadway in 1959 in "Once Upon a Mattress," receiving a Tony Award nomination, her other Broadway appearances include "Putting It Together," "Love Letters," "Moon Over Buffalo" receiving a Tony Award nomination. She appeared regularly on "The Garry Moore Show" for three seasons, receiving an Emmy Award. Ms. Burnett also appeared in specials with Beverly Sills, Dolly Parton, and in Julie and Carol at Carnegie Hall with Julie Andrews receiving an Emmy Award. She was the first celebrity to appear on the children's series, "Sesame Street" in 1969. Ms. Burnett’s films and television appearances included "Pete ‘n’ Tillie," "The Four Seasons," "Annie," "Noises Off," "Horton Hears a Who," "6 Rms Riv Vu," "Carol +2" with Lucille Ball as a special guest, "The Lucy Show," "Friendly Fire," "Mad About You," receiving an Emmy Award, "Carol Burnett and Friends," "Life of the Party: The Story of Beatrice," "Desperate Housewives," "Mama’s Family," "Hawaii Five-O," "Glee," and "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" receiving an Emmy Award nomination. Ms. Burnett and her daughter, Carrie Hamilton, co-wrote the play, "Hollywood Arms,' directed by Harold Prince on Broadway starring Michele Pawk and Linda Lavin. Her books include “One More Time,” “This Time Together, Laughter and Reflection,” “Carrie and Me: A Mother-Daughter Love Story,” and her newest book, “In Such Good Company” published in 2016. Among Ms. Burnett’s many awards include the Women in Film Crystal Award, induction in the Television Hall of Fame, Kennedy Center Honors, Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Ellen Burstyn’s illustrious sixty-year acting career encompasses film, stage and television. In 1975, she became only the third woman in history to win both the Tony Award and the Academy Award in the same year, for her work in Bernard Slade’s “Same Time, Next Year” on Broadway and in Martin Scorsese’s “Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore,” also receiving a Golden Globe nomination and a British Academy Award for Best Actress. Ms. Burstyn has been nominated for an Academy Award five other times for “The Last Picture Show” in 1972, “The Exorcist” in 1974, “Same Time, Next Year” in 1979, “Resurrection” in 1981, and “Requiem for a Dream” in 2000. She became a “triple crown winner” receiving an Emmy Award in “Law & Order: SVU” in 2009. Ms. Burstyn also won an Emmy Award in 2013 for “Political Animals.” She has received Emmy Award nominations for her title role in “The People vs. Jean Harris” in 1981, her starring role in “Pack of Lies” in 1987, “Big Love” in 2008, “Flowers in the Attic” in 2014, also receiving a Screen Actors Guild nomination in 2015, and “House of Cards” in 2016. Her films include “Draft Day,” “The Calling,” “Interstellar,” “The Age of Adaline,” “Custody,” and “Wiener Dog.” She also appeared in the Broadway productions of “84 Charing Cross Road,” “Shirley Valentine,” “Sacrilege,” and the London production of Lillian Hellman’s “The Children’s Hour.” Ms. Burstyn was the first woman elected president of Actors Equity Association from 1982 to 1985, and serves as the Artistic Director of the famed Actors Studio, and as co-president with Al Pacino and Harvey Keitel. She lectures throughout the country and her best-selling memoir, “Lessons in Becoming Myself” was published in 2006. Ms. Burstyn was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame.
Starred on Broadway in “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street “opposite Angela Lansbury receiving the Tony Award and Drama Desk Award, in “Applause” opposite Lauren Bacall receiving a Tony Award nomination and Theatre World Award, in “A Little Night Music” receiving a Tony Award nomination, and in the film version opposite Elizabeth Taylor. Mr. Cariou’s other appearances on Broadway include ‘Dance a Little Closer,” ‘Teddy & Alice,” “Ziegfeld,” “Cold Storage,” “The Dinner Party,” and “Proof.’ Mr. Cariou’s film appearances includes “About Schmidt” opposite Jack Nicholson, “Thirteen Days,” “Flags of Our Fathers,” “Secret Window,” “The Onion Movie,” and “Spotlight.” His television appearances include starring as Henry Reagan as Tom Selleck’s father on “Blue Bloods,” as Judd Fitzgerald on “Murder, She Wrote,” “MI-6,” “Star Trek: Voyager,” “Ed,” “Nuremberg,’ “A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes: The Annette Funicello Story”, and as Franklin D. Roosevelt in “Into the Storm” receiving an Emmy nomination. His Off-Broadway appearances include “Master Class,” and in three solo plays: “Broadway and the Bard,” as Ernest Hemingway in Papa as “Ernest,” in “Mountain” as Justice William O. Douglas. Mr. Cariou performed at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival in Ontario as Prospero, Coriolanus, Brutus, and Petruchio, at the Guthrie Theatre in Minneapolis, as Iago, Oberon, Henry V, King Lear, Orlando in “As You Like It,” and as Agamemnon in Tyrone Guthrie’s production of “The House of Atreus” receiving a Theatre World Award. In Canada, he played the role of Macbeth, Richard Nixon in “Frost/Nixon,” and performed many times at the Manitoba Theatre Centre. Mr. Cariou is known for his voice-over work in commercials, books-on-tape and films including “The Jonestown Flood,” which won an Academy Award, and as Harry Bosch in Michael Connolly’s well-known novels. Mr. Cariou was elected to the American Theatre Hall of Fame.
Created the role of Dolly Gallagher Levi in “Hello, Dolly!” on Broadway receiving the Tony Award, and performed in the musical more than 5,000 times, both on Broadway and on the road. Her other memorable theatre includes: receiving a Tony Award for her performance in “The Vamp,” “Show Girl,” receiving a Tony Award nomination, “The Millionairess,” as Lorelei Lee in “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,” “Proof Through the Night,” “Lend an Ear,” as Ruth Sherwood in “Wonderful Town,” “Lorelei” receiving a Tony Award nomination, “Jerry’s Girls,” “Legends,” and starred in the national tour of “Sugar Babies.” Ms. Channing's films and television includes “Thoroughly Modern Millie” with Julie Andrews, Mary Tyler Moore and Beatrice Lillie, receiving a Golden Globe Award and an Oscar nomination, “The First Traveling Saleslady” with Ginger Rogers and Clint Eastwood, “Shinbone Alley,” Otto Preminger’s “Skidoo,” as the White Queen in “Alice in Wonderland,” as Grandmama Adams in the animated version of “The Addams Family,” “Sesame Street,” and “Family Guy.” Ms. Channing has recorded ten gold albums, and the original cast album of “Hello Dolly!” topped the Beatles when it was released in 1964. She has received the Oscar Hammerstein Award, a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Sarah Siddons Award, Oscar Hammerstein Award, and a Lifetime Achievement Tony Award. She was the first celebrity to perform in a Super Bowl halftime show. Ms. Channing’s autobiography titled “Just Lucky I Guess” was published in 2002. A documentary about Ms. Channing, “Larger Than Life” was released in 2012. Ms. Channing was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame.
A most gifted actress, director, composer and producer, Ms. Chen’s films and television work includes “The Hawaiians” opposite Charlton Heston, receiving a Golden Globe Award nomination,“Alice’s Restaurant” “Three Days of the Condor,” “Face,” “Descendants of the Past - Ancestors of the Future,” “The Potential Wives of Norman Mao,” and The Final War of Olly Winter, receiving an Emmy Award nomination. Ms. Chen has played several leading roles in productions on Broadway and Off Broadway, including in David Henry Hwang’s “Family Devotions,” the dowager ruler in “The Empress of China,” “The Love Suicide at Schofield Barracks,” “The Chang Fragments,” and “The Shanghai Gesture.” As a director, the plays she has directed include Lucy Liu’s New York stage debut in “Fairy Bones,” A gifted song writer, she wrote the music for the song, “This Tree,” with lyrics by Ruth Wolff, which premiered with the Hong Kong Children’s Choir at its Silver Jubilee. Ms. Chen has presented Special Talks across America entitled, “Heroes of History: Legacy of My Chinese Family.” A volunteer for Lighthouse International as a reader for the sight-impaired, Ms. Chen received the Women’s Projects Women of Achievement Award, the Anna May Wong Award of Excellence and Pan Asian Repertory Theatre’s Legacy Award.
Mr. Cox’s many stage roles include as a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company and London’s National Theatre during the 1980’s and 1990’s in the lead role in “Titus Andronicus,” Petruchio in “The Taming of the Shrew,” as Burgundy opposite Laurence Olivier in “King Lear,” and as King Lear at the National Theatre. He also played Inspector Nelson in “Rat in the Skull,” receiving the Laurence Olivier Award as Best Actor, on Broadway in “The Championship Season,” and in “The Weir” at The Donmar Theatre and Wyndham’s Theatre. He began as a member of Edinburgh’s Lyceum company, and the Birmingham Rep where he played the lead role in “Peer Gynt,” and Orlando in “As You Like It.” Mr. Cox’s television and films include: as Sir Winston Churchill in Jonathan Teplitzky’s film, “Churchill,” as Henry II in “The Devil Crown,” “War & Peace,” “The Prisoner,” as Leon Trotsky in “Nicholas and Alexandra,” “The Lost Language of Cranes,” and as Hermann Goring in “Nuremberg” receiving an Emmy award, Golden Globe and SAG nominations, Frasier receiving an Emmy nomination, “L.I.E.” receiving several awards including the National Society of Film Critics Award, and the NY Film Critics Award, as Jack Langrishe in “Deadwood,” receiving an Emmy nomination, “Zodiac,” “Doctor Who,” “Rob Roy,” “Braveheart,” “Adaptation” receiving a SAG nomination, “The Ring,” “X2,” “The Bourne Supremacy,” “Red,” “Chain Reaction,” “Super Troopers,” “The Escapist,” “The Day of the Triffids,” and “Rise of the Planet of the Apes.” Mr. Cox has narrated several audiobooks including “Ivanhoe,” J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Silmarillion,” and “The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun.” He was elected as Rector of the University of Dundee, and is an ‘Ambassador’ for the Screen Academy Scotland. He received the Bradford International Film Festival Lifetime Achievement Award. Mr. Cox was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire.
In a celebrated acting career spanning eight decades, Mr. Davis began as a writer and actor with the Rose McClendon Players in Harlem in 1939. His Broadway appearances include “Jeb,” “Anna Lucasta,” “The Wisteria Trees,” “Green Pastures,” “Jamaica,” “The Zulu and the Zayda,” “I’m Not Rappaport,” and wrote and starred in “Purlie" in 1961. In film and television appearances include with Sidney Poitier in “No Way Out,” “The Cardinal,” “I’m Not Rappaport,” “Twelve Angry Men,” “Do the Right Thing,” “Jungle Fever,” “Get on the Bus,” “Roots: The Next Generation,” Alex Haley’s “Queen,” and received Emmy nominations for “Teacher, Teacher,” “King,” and “Miss Evers’ Boys.” He wrote “For Us the Living” receiving the Neil Simon Jury Award, and with his wife, Ruby Dee, co-produced “With Ossie & Ruby.” As a director his films included “Cotton Comes to Harlem,” “Gordon’s War,” and “Black Girl.” His books included “Escape to Freedom,” “Langston,” “Just Like Martin,” and he marked his 50th year wedding anniversary to Ruby Dee with their joint autobiography,” With Ossie and Ruby: In This Life Together.” He received the NY Urban League Frederick Douglass Award, and he and his wife were named to the NAACP Image Award Hall of Fame, awarded the National Medal of Arts, and received the Kennedy Center Honors. He was inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame in 1994. Mr. Davis died in 2005. (The interview was conducted in 2003).
Best known for originating the role of "Ruth Younger" in the stage and film versions of A Raisin in the Sun opposite Sidney Poitier, Ms. Dee received an Academy Award nomination and a Screen Actors Guild Award for the film, “American Gangster.” Her notable stage roles on Broadway and across America included “Anna Lucasta,” “A Long Way from Home,” “Purlie Victorious,” “Oresteia,” “Boesman and Lena,” “Hamlet,” “Zora is my Name,” “Checkmates,” “The Glass Menagerie,” “My One Good Nerve: A Visit with Ruby Dee,” “A Last Dance for Sybil,” and “Saint Lucy’s Eyes.” Ms. Dee performed in lead roles at the American Shakespeare Festival as Kate in “Taming of the Shrew,” and Cordelia in “King Lear,” becoming the first black actress to portray a lead role in the festival. Her film work included “The Jackie Robinson Story,” “St. Louis Blues,” “Buck and the Preacher,” “Do the Right Thing,” “Jungle Fever,” and “A Thousand Words” opposite Eddie Murphy. Her television work included “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings,” “Long Day’s Journey into Night,” “Go Tell it to the Mountain,” Gore Vidal’s “Lincoln,” “Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters First 100 Years,” and “Their Eyes Were Watching God.” She was an Emmy, Obie and Drama Desk winner. Ms. Dee also received a National Medal of Arts, Kennedy Center Honors, SAG Life Achievement Award, and was inducted into the NAACP Image Awards Hall of Fame and the Theatre Hall of Fame. She received the Grammy Award with Ossie Davis, the noted actor and her husband, for “With Ossie and Ruby: In This Life Together,” and former President Jimmy Carter. Ms. Dee and Davis were well-known civil rights activists. She was awarded – along with her late husband – the Lifetime Achievement Freedom Award, presented by the National Civil Rights Museum. Ms. Dee died in 2014. (The interview was conducted in 2002).
ANDRÉ DE SHIELDS
In a career spanning forty-seven years, André De Shields has distinguished himself as an actor, director, choreographer and educator. Mr. De Shields is best known for his performances in six Broadway productions: “Impressionism,” costarring with Jeremy Irons and Joan Allen, the world premiere of Mark Medoff’s “Prymate" receiving a Drama Desk nomination, The Full Monty, receiving Tony, Drama Desk and Astaire Award nominations, Outer Critics Circle and Drama League Awards, “Play On!” receiving a Tony nomination, “Ain’t Misbehavin’” receiving a Drama Desk nomination, and the title role in the musical, “The Wiz.” Mr. De Shields is an esteemed alumnus of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2004 Doctor of Fine Arts honoris causa, and New York University’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. His numerous accolades include a second honorary Doctor of Fine Arts – SUNY-Buffalo State, Obie award for Sustained Excellence of Performance, National Black Theatre Festival’s Living Legend Award, a Fox Foundation Fellowship, Florida Atlantic University’s Making Waves Award, the Theatre School at DePaul University Award for Excellence in the Arts, Riant Theatre’s Pioneer of the Arts Award, three Chicago Joseph Jefferson Awards and nine Audelco Awards. A triple Capricorn, Mr. De Shields is the ninth of eleven children born and reared in Baltimore, Maryland. Ubuntu! I am because you are! (The interview was conducted with Mr. De Shields in 1999, when he served as Chair of Equity’s Committee for Racial Equality.)
Ms. Dukakis began her illustrious career in the theater, receiving an Obie Award in 1963 for her performance Off-Broadway in Brecht’s “Man Equals Man.” On Broadway she has starred in a one-woman play “Rose,” “Who’s Who in Hell,” and “Social Security.” Ms. Dukakis’ film and television appearances include “Steel Magnolias,” “Moonstruck” receiving an Academy Award, Golden Globe Award, LA Film Critics Association Award, and several other awards, in “Sinatra” receiving a Golden Globe Award nomination, “Mr. Holland’s Opus,” “The Cemetery Club,” “Cloudburst” receiving a Seattle International Film Festival Award nomination, as Charlotte Kiszko in “A Life for a Life,” “The Event” receiving a Genie Award nomination, “In the Land of Women,” “Mighty Aphrodite,” “Joan of Arc” receiving an Emmy Award nomination, “Jane Austen’s Mafia!,” as Anna Madrigal in “More Tales of the City” receiving an Emmy Award, and starred in and executive-produced “Montana Amazon.” She directed the world premiere production of Todd Logan's “Botanic Garden” at Victory Gardens Theatre in Chicago. Ms. Dukakis appeared in the revival of Tennessee Williams’ “The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore” opposite Kevin Anderson at Hartford Stage. She also co-adapted and starred in the world-premiere of “Another Side of the Island,” at Alpine Theatre Project in Whitefish, Montana. Ms. Dukakis wrote her best-selling autobiography, “Ask Me Again Tomorrow: A Life in Progress” in 2003.
Starred in “Anatomy of a Murder” opposite James Stewart and Lee Remick, directed by Otto Preminger. He originated the role of Brick on Broadway opposite Barbara Bel Geddes in the original production of Tennessee Williams’ play, “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” directed by Elia Kazan. Mr. Gazzara’s other memorable Broadway appearances included Jocko in “End as a Man,” “A Hatful of Rain” with Shelley Winters and James Franciosa receiving a Tony Award nomination, “Hughie" and “Duet,” receiving a Tony Award nomination, in Edward Albee’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf,” receiving a Tony Award nomination, and Off-Broadway as Yogi Berra in “Nobody Don’t Like Yogi.” Among his film appearances included “The Strange One,” “A Rage to Live,” opposite Peter Falk and John Cassavetes in “Husbands,” “The Bridge at Remagen,” “The Killing of a Chinese Bookie,” “Opening Night” with Gena Rowlands, “If it’s Tuesday This Must be Belgium,” “Saint Jack” directed by Peter Bogdanovich, “Voyage of the Damned,” “Inchon” with Laurence Olivier, the Coen Brothers’ “The Big Lebowski,” John Turturro’s “Illuminata,” Spike Lee’s “Summer of Sam,” Lars von Trier’s “Dogville,” “The Spanish Prisoner,” “Eve’ with Lauren Bacall, “L’onore e il rispetto,” and “13” with Jason Statham. Mr. Gazzara became well known from starring in the television series, “Run for Your Life.” He also starred in television’s first miniseries, “QB VII” on “Colombo,” “A Friend in Deed,” “An Early Frost,” receiving an Emmy nomination, “Hysterical Blindness” receiving an Emmy Award, and played Agostino Casaroli in “Pope John Paul II.” Mr. Gazzara died in 2012. (The interview was conducted in 2002.)
Most well-known for his portrayal as the psychiatrist Dr. Frasier Crane on the NBC sitcom “Frasier” opposite Jane Leeves, John Mahoney, Peri Gilpin, and David Hyde-Pierce, he was the first American actor ever to be nominated for multiple Emmy awards for portraying the same character on three different television shows – “Cheers,” “Frasier” and “Wings.” Mr. Grammer also directed over thirty episodes of Frazier. On Broadway, Mr. Grammer originated the roles of Charles Frohman and Captain Hook in the Broadway musical, “Neverland,” directed by Diane Paulus. His other Broadway appearances include as Georges in a revival of “La Cage aux Folles,” receiving a Tony Award nomination, “Macbeth,” and in “Othello” with James Earl Jones and Christopher Plummer. Mr. Grammer’s many television starring roles included two miniseries, “Kennedy,” and “George Washington,” “Back to You” with Patricia Heaton, “Boss” receiving a Golden Globe Award, “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” “Swing Vote,” “The Pentagon Wars,” “30 Rock,” as Mayor Tom Kane in “Boss,” also as an executive producer, “Partners” also as executive producer and directed two episodes, and as General S. Patton in “An American Carol.” His film appearances include “Transformers: Age of Extinction,” “Down the Periscope,” and “X-Men: The Last Stand.” He provided the voice of Sideshow Bob on “The Simpsons” for fourteen years, and created voices for many films including “Toy Story 2,” “Anastasia,” “Bartok the Magnificent,” and “Animal Farm.” Mr. Grammer’s production company produces the sitcoms: “Girlfriends,” “The Game,” and “Medium.” He has won five Emmy Award, three Golden Globe Awards, two People’s Choice Awards, and a Screen Actors Guild Award. Mr. Grammer has received a Directors Guild of America nomination, a Tony Award nomination, and over forty-five nominations for major awards. Mr. Grammer received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Filmmaker, actress and co-artistic director of The Actors Studio. On Broadway Ms. Grant created the role of the shoplifter in the original production of “Detective Story” receiving a Drama Critics Circle Award and recreated her portrayal in the 1951 film receiving a Cannes Film Festival Award, Academy Award nomination. Her other Broadway appearances include “The Prisoner of Second Avenue,” “The Captains and the Kings,” and “Two for the Seesaw,” Her films include: “In the Heat of the Night,” “Shampoo” receiving an Academy Award as Best Supporting Actress, “Dr. T and the Women,” “The Good Doctor,” “The Landlord” receiving an Academy Award nomination, “Airport ’77,” “Voyage of the Damned” receiving an Academy Award nomination, “Plaza Suite,” “There Was a Crooked Man,” and “Valley of the Dolls.” Her TV appearances include: “The Neon Ceiling” receiving an Emmy Award, “The Substance of Fire,”“The Hijacking of the Achille Lauro,” “Mussolini: The Untold Story,” “The Seagull,” “Peyton Place” receiving an Emmy Award, and during television’s “Golden Age” on “ Studio One,” “Danger,” and “Kraft Television Theatre.” As a filmmaker, with her husband, Joseph Feury, they have produced six documentaries for HBO, including “Down and Out in America” receiving an Academy Award, “Tell Me a Riddle,” and “Bagdad ER.” Ms. Grant received the Director’s Guild Award for “Nobody’s Child.” Congress recognized Ms. Grant for her work, and Women in Film honored her with their first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award.
Known for the autobiographical monologues that he wrote and performed for the theater in the 1980’s and 1990’s, his monologues included “Swimming to Cambodia,” receiving a National Book Award, and adapted into a film by Jonathan Demme, “Monster in a Box,” directed by Nick Broomfield as a film, and “Gray’s Anatomy,” directed by Steven Soderbergh as a film. His film and television appearances included “Hard Choices,” “Beaches,” “Buckminster Fuller: Thinking Out Loud,” and “Kate and Leopold,” “Saturday Night Live,” “Spencer: for Hire,” and “The Nanny.” In 1970, he joined Richard Schechner’s experimental troupe, The Performance Group, and with actors including Willem Dafoe and Elizabeth Le Compte, helped to co-found the theater company, The Wooster Group in New York City. Mr. Gray appeared on Broadway in the role of the Stage Manager in “Our Town” for Lincoln Center Theater, and in “The Best Man.” His books include “Sex and Death at the Age of 14,” “A Personal History of the American Theater.” In 2011, “The Journals of Spalding Gray” was published. Steven Soderbergh made a documentary film about Mr. Gray's life, “And Everything is Going Fine,” in 2010. Mr. Gray died in 2004. (The interview was conducted in 2000).
Best known for creating the role of the Master of Ceremonies in both the Broadway and film versions of the Kander & Ebb musical, “Cabaret,” for which he won the Academy Award, Tony Award and Golden Globe Award. On Broadway, he received a Tony Award for creating the role of George M. Cohan in “George M!,” and created the role of the Wizard of Oz in the musical, “Wicked.” His other Broadway appearances include starring as Moonface Martin in the revivals of “Anything Goes” and as Amos Hart in “Chicago.” Off-Broadway he appeared in John Patrick Shanley’s “A Fool and Her Fortune.” Mr Grey received the Drama Desk Award for “Chicago,” and four more Drama Desk Award nominations. His film and TV includes appearing in “Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins” receiving a Golden Globe nomination, “The Fantasticks,” “The Seven Percent Solution,” and received an Emmy nomination for “Brooklyn Bridge.” A renowned photographer, his book “Pictures I Had to Take,” coincided with his debut photographic exhibition at New York’s Stanley Wise Gallery. Mr. Grey’s work was exhibited at the Museum of the City of New York, and has become part of the permanent collection of the Whitney Museum of Modern Art.
One of the finest classical and contemporary leading ladies ever to grace the 20th century American stage, Ms. Harris was considered the “First Lady of the American Theater.” She won five Tony Awards, three Emmy Awards, a Grammy Award, and was nominated for an Academy Award. Among her many memorable performances on Broadway include as Frankie in “A Member of the Wedding” directed by Harold Clurman, as Emily Dickinson in “A Belle of Amherst,” “The Last of Mrs. Lincoln,” “A Shot in the Dark,” “Marathon 33,” “And Miss Reardon Drinks a Little,” “Forty Carets,” “The Glass Menagerie,” “Lucifer’s Child,” “The Young and the Fair,” “Little Moon of Alban,” opposite Boris Karloff in “The Lark,” “I Am a Camera,” and “The Gin Game.” She performed in a North American tour in 1992 of “Lettice and Lovage.” Her film and television work includes “East of Eden” opposite James Dean, “A Member of the Wedding,” “The Last of Mrs. Lincoln,” “The Hiding Place,” opposite Paul Newman in “Harper,” as Queen Victoria in “Victoria Regina,” as Nora opposite Christopher Plummer in “A Doll’s House,” and “Knots Landing.” She narrated five historical documentaries, and did extensive voice work for documentary maker Ken Burns including “Brooklyn Bridge,” “Not for Ourselves Alone: Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony,” and “The Civil War.” Ms. Harris was a Kennedy Center honoree, awarded the National Medal of Arts. She is a member of the American Hall of Fame and received the 2002 Special Lifetime Achievement Tony Award. Ms. Harris died in 2013. (The interview was conducted in 1998).
received an Obie Award and Lucille Lortel Award in Stephen Adley Guirgis’ “Between Riverside and Crazy,” which received The Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Mr Henderson is best-known for his many roles in August Wilson’s plays, originating the role of Turnbo in “Jitney,” receiving a Drama Desk Award as a member of the outstanding ensemble, he was Jim Bono opposite Denzel Washington in the Broadway revival of “Fences,” receiving a Tony Award nomination, and the Actor’s Equity Richard Seff Award, in the revival of “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom’ with Charles S. Dutton and Whoopi Goldberg, and the premiere of ‘King Hedley II,” with Brian Stokes Mitchell and Leslie Uggams. On Broadway, Mr. Henderson also played Van Helsing in ‘Dracula the Musical,” and in Regina Taylor’s “Drowning Crow” with Alfre Woodward. He re-created his role as Bono in the film, “Fences,” directed and starring Denzel Washington, played Arthur in the HBO film, “Everyday People,” the White House valet, William Slade in Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln,” and in the 1989 version of “A Raisin in the Sun” with Danny Glover and Ester Rolle. He directed “Zooman and the Sign” for Signature Theatre and with the LAByrinth Theatre Company, portrayed Pontius Pilate in “The Last Days of Judas Iscariot.” Mr. Henderson was the Chair of the Department of Theatre and Dance at the University at Buffalo, the State University of New York.
Ms. Hunter’s long and rich career included playing Stella in the original Broadway production of Tennessee Williams' “A Streetcar Named Desire” with Marlon Brando and Jessica Tandy, and in the film version with Vivien Leigh and Marlon Brando (receiving the Academy Award and Golden Globe Award). Her film and television work includes “The Seventh Victim,” “Deadline USA” with Humphrey Bogart, as Zira in the first three original films of “Planet of the Apes” opposite Charlton Heston, “A Matter of Life and Death” with David Niven, “The Comedian,” “Backstairs at the White House,” and “The Oregon Trail.” Her final Broadway appearance was in the revival of Oscar Wilde's “An Ideal Husband.” Ms. Hunter received two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Ms. Hunter died in 2002. (The interview was conducted in 1998).
One of the most gifted actors of Bosnia & Herzegovina, Mr. Jovičić was the Artistic Director of the famous Chamber Theatre 55 in Sarajevo for several years. He gained wide popularity from his television and film work including “Summer in the Golden Valley,” “Alena’s Journey,” the TV series “Porobdzije,” “Skins,” and “Aleksa Santic.” His memorable theater work began at the National Theatre of Bosnia in Banja Luka including roles as Volodya in Drago Jančar's “Great Brilliant Waltz,” directed by Jovica Pavic, and as Ivan in “Metastable Grail.” At the Chamber Theatre 55, Mr. Jovicic’s roles included as Edmund Kin in Jean-Paul Sartre's play, “Kin,” the title character in Ahmed Muratbegović’s play, “Hussein Gradaščević’,” the lead role in Ionesco’s “Exit the King” directed by Dino Mustafic, Hasanaga in “Hasanaginica” directed by Mustafa Nadarević, in “Little Shop Around the Corner,” directed by Francois Lunel, and as Machiavelli in “The Dialogue in Hell” directed by Aleš Kurt. He received several awards for his performances in Sarajevo and across Bosnia and several other countries in Jose Sanchis Sinisterra’s “Ay, Carmela,” co-starring with Selma Alisphasic, which they have performed together for over a decade, directed by Robert Raponja, produced by the Sarajevo War Theatre (SARTR). Mr. Jovičić received the Golden Laurel Wreath Award for Best Actor at the 35th International M.E.S.S. Festival, and won numerous other acting awards including the “Sixth of April Award” of Sarajevo for his enormous contributions to Theatre.
RANDALL DUK KIM
On Broadway, Mr. Kim has performed in “The King and I,” “Golden Child,” and “Flower Drum Song.” In a career spanning nearly fifty years, his stage performances include with the New York Shakespeare Festival in “The Jungle of Cities” and “Pericles” and “Cymbeline,” “The Tempest” at Lincoln Center, “The Karl Marx Play,” and “The Year of the Dragon,” at the Jewish Repertory Theatre in “A Majority of One,” at Burlington’s Champlain Shakespeare Festival in “The Taming of the Shrew,” “Titus Andronicus,” “A Midsummer Night's Dream” and “Richard III,” at San Francisco’s American Conservatory in “King Richard III,” “The Three Penny Opera,” “Marco Millions,” at the Guthrie Theatre in “The Pretenders,” “Hamlet” and “The Marriage,” at the Singapore Repertory Theatre in “Golden Child” and “ART.” In 1979 with Anne Occhiogrosso and Charles Bright, Mr. Kim co-founded American Players Theater in Wisconsin serving as Artistic Director and performing as Puck, Titus Andronicus, Petruchio, King John, Shylock, Brutus, Falstaff, Prospero, Hamlet and King Lear, in “Tamburlaine the Great,” “Ivanov,” “Oedipus Rex,” “An Enemy of the People” and “Tartuffe.” Mr. Kim’s film and television appearances include as The Keymaker in “Matrix Reloaded,” “Memoirs of a Geisha,” as The Tattoo Master in “Ninja Assassin” and as Master Oogway in “Kung Fu Panda,” BBC’s “Prisoners in Time,” “The Lost Empire,” and as General Alak in “Anna and the King.” Mr. Kim is a recipient of an Obie for “Sustained Excellence of Performance.”
One of the pioneers of television acting in the 1950’s, he is most known as Oscar Madison over five seasons on the television sitcom, “The Odd Couple” with Tony Randall, receiving two Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe, and as the medical examiner in his series, “Quincy M.E.” He appeared on several live TV dramas during television’s “golden age” including “Inner Sanctum,” “Alfred Hitchcock Presents,” “The Twilight Zone,” “Naked City,” and “The Defenders” receiving an Emmy Award, later in “The Odd Couple: Together Again,” and “Diagnosis: Murder.” Mr. Klugman’s films include “Twelve Angry Men” with Henry Fonda, “Days of Wine and Roses” with Jack Lemmon and Lee Remick, “Act One,” “The Detective” with Frank Sinatra, and “Two Minute Warning” with Charlton Heston. Mr. Klugman appearances on Broadway included “Golden Boy” with John Garfield, opposite Ethel Merman in “Gypsy,” “The Odd Couple” and “The Sunshine Boys” with Tony Randall for The National Actors Theatre. Off Broadway, he appeared in “The Value of Names” with Dan Lauria, and in “Twelve Angry Men” at the George Street Playhouse in 2012. Mr. Klugman died later that year. (The interview was conducted in 2006).
Ms. Knight received the Tony Award on Broadway for her performance in “Kennedy’s Children,” and Academy Award nominations for “The Dark at the Top of the Stairs,” and “Sweet Bird of Youth” opposite Paul Newman. Her memorable stage performances on Broadway included “The Three Sisters” with Kim Stanley and Geraldine Page, “Landscape of the Body,” “The Man from Atlanta” with Rip Torn, and “Come Back, Come Back, Wherever You Are.” Off-Broadway, she starred opposite Al Freeman, Jr in Amiri Baraka’s original production of “Dutchman.” Ms. Knight’s memorable regional work includes “The Cherry Orchard,” “The Glass Menagerie,” “Marriage Play” and as Blanche in “A Streetcar Named Desire.” Her other films include “Dutchman,” for which she received the Volpi Cup, “The Rain People,” “The Group,” “Petulia,” “Juggernaut,” “21 Hours at Munich,” “The Defection of Simas Kudirka,” “Beyond the Poseidon Adventure,” “Playing for Time” with Vanessa Redgrave, “As Good as It Gets” with Helen Hunt and Jack Nicholson, “The Country Girl,” “My Louisiana Sky,” both “Paul Blart: Mall Cop” films with Kevin James, “P.S. Your Cat is Dead,” “The Private Lives of Pippa Lee,” “Redwood Highway” with Tom Skerritt, “Angel Eyes” \with Jennifer Lopez, and “Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood.” Her many television appearances include as Mrs. Newcomb in Buckskin, thirtysomething, If These Walls Could Talk, and Desperate Housewives. Ms. Knight has received three Emmy Awards, two Golden Globe Awards, and eight Emmy nominations.
Widely known for his roles as Colonel Miles Quaritch in “Avatar,” as Major General George E. Pickett in “Gettysburg,” as Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson in “Gods and Generals,” and his one-man show, “Beyond Glory.” On Broadway, he played Colonel Nathan Jessup in the original production of “A Few Good Men,” “The Speed of Darkness,” and was Happy in the 1984 revival of “Death of a \Salesman” opposite Dustin Hoffman, and in the television film. Off-Broadway Mr. Lang played Colonel Littlefield in John Patrick Shanley’s play, “Defiance” receiving a Tony nomination, and in Arthur Miller’s last play, “Finishing the Picture,” at Chicago’s Goodman Theatre. He has performed his one-man show, “Beyond Glory,” for troops deployed overseas, and across America, receiving a Drama Desk nomination, and a Lucille Lortel Award. His film and television work includes the title role in “Babe Ruth,” “Manhunter,” “Last Exit to Brooklyn,” “Tombstone,” “Public Enemies,” “The Men Who Stare at Goats,” “Conan the Barbarian,” “Crime Story,” “The Fugitive,” “Terra Nova,” “In Plain Sight,” and “Into the Badlands.” He performed the narration for “The Gettysburg Story: Battlefield Auto Tour,” at the Gettysburg National Military Park. Mr. Lang was co-artistic director of The Actors Studio from 2004 to 2006.
Best known for creating and performing his memorable one-man shows including “Lyndon” as President Lyndon Baines Johnson, receiving an Emmy nomination on PBS, “Clarence Darrow, Tonight!,” receiving a Dramatists Guild Award nomination and a Silver Gavel Award, “Teddy, Tonight!” as Theodore Roosevelt, and as Ernest Hemingway in “Hemingway,” all of these shows premiered in New York. “Hemingway” was commissioned by The Hemingway Foundation. All of his one-man shows were played at The Lyndon Johnson Presidential Library at the request of and for Ladybird Johnson. He performed “Lyndon” and “Clarence Darrow, Tonight!” at President Clinton's Second Inaugural Celebration. Mr. Luckinbill is well-known as Spock’s half-brother, Sybok, in the film, “Star Trek V: The Final Frontier.” His theater career includes on Broadway in “A Man for All Seasons” with Paul Scofield, “The Shadow Box” receiving a Tony Award nomination, “The Boys in The Band,” in the first American production of Joe Orton’s “What the Butler Saw,” “Chapter Two,” “The Electric Map,” receiving a New York Critics Circle Award, “Poor Murderer,” at New York City’s Public Theatre in “A Prayer for My Daughter,” played Bertolt Brecht's “Galileo” with his own company, The New York Actor's Theater, and was a charter member of the four first-ranked American Repertory Companies in which he played many leading roles. His many television appearances include his own series – “The Delphi Bureau,” starring in James Ivory’s “The 5:48,” and “Ike.” He also appeared in many films including “The Boys in the Band,” “Such Good Friends” opposite Dyan Cannon, “Messenger of Death” opposite Charles Bronson, “Cocktail” with Tom Cruise, and narrated Frank Thompson’s documentary, “Moonwalk One.” He is married to actress, Lucie Arnaz, and proud of his five children, Nick, Ben, Simon, Joe and Kate.
Ms. Malina, with her husband, Julian Beck co-founded The Living Theatre, a political theatre troupe that rose to prominence in New York City and Paris during the 1950s and 1960s. In 1945, she had attended the New School for Social Research in New York City studying theater with the great director, Erwin Piscator. Ms. Malina and Mr. Beck worked in partnership to produce landmark plays including “The Connection,” “The Brig,” “Paradise Now” and “Dr. Faustus Lights the Lights.” Ms. Malina directed most of the troupe’s shows. Ms. Malina’s film and television work included “Dog Day Afternoon” with Al Pacino, “Looking for Richard,” “Awakenings,” “Enemies, A Love Story,” as Grandma Addams in “The Addams Family,” “Household Saints,” “Nothing Really Happens,” and “The Sopranos.” Ms. Malina’s writings include her book, “The Enormous Despair.” Ms. Malina died in 2015. (The interview was conducted in 1999.)
Her Broadway appearances include “The Royal Family,” “The Sound of Music,” “The Dinner Party,” “Follies’ with Bernadette Peters and Elaine Page, “A Doll’s House” with Janet McTeer, “Lend Me a Tenor,” “Dancing at Lughnasa,” “City of Angels,” and at the Lincoln Center Theatre in “A Bad Friend,” and “The City of Conversation.” Ms. Maxwell has received six Tony Award nominations, won two Drama Desk Awards, Lucille Lortel Award, Drama League Award, Outer Critics Circle Award, NYITT award, and the second actress ever to receive a Tony nomination in all four acting categories. Her Off Broadway appearances include: “My Old LaExecution,” and “The Castle: A Triumph”. At regional theaters across America, Ms. Maxwell has starred in: “The King and I,” opposite Richard Chamberlin in Hawaii, “The Seagull” at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., “Marvin’s Room,” “Heartbeats,” “The Marriage of Bette and Boo,” and “Snow White X.” Her film & television includes: “I Am Michael” with James Franco, “Billy and Billie,” “AIDS – Changing the Rules,” and in four episodes on “Law & Order” each time as a different character, and starring in “BrainDead” with Tony Shalhoub.
Best known for her Emmy-winning role as Blanche Devereaux on “The Golden Girls,” receiving an Emmy Award, as Vivian Harmon on “Maude,” and “Aunt Fran on Mama’s Family,” Ms. McClanahan began her career playing on Broadway in “Jimmy Shine” opposite Dustin Hoffman. Off-Broadway, she received an Obie Award for “Who’s Happy Now?” Her other Broadway appearances include “The Women,” “California Suite,” and “Wicked.” Her television and films include as “Colombo: Ashes to Ashes,” “Lou Grant,” “Out to Sea” with Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon, “Back to You and Me,” “The Fighting Temptations” with Cuba Gooding Jr. and Beyonce, and as Matilda Joslyn Gage in “The Dreamer of Oz.” She received four Emmy Award nominations, three Golden Globe nominations, and two TV Land Awards. Her autobiography, “My First Five Husbands...and the Ones Who Got Away” was published in 2007. Ms. McClanahan died in 2010. (The interview was conducted in 2004.)
Ms. Neal was best known for her film roles in “Hud” opposite Paul Newman, receiving the Academy Award, BAFTA Award, National Board of Review Award and the NY Film Critics Circle Award, “The Day the Earth Stood Still,” “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” “John Loves Mary,” opposite Ronald Reagan in “The Hasty Heart,” “The Fountainhead” opposite Gary Cooper, “The Breaking Point” with John Garfield, “Operation Pacific” an “In Harm’s Way” with John Wayne, Elia Kazan’s “A Face in the Crowd” opposite Andy Griffith, “The Subject was Roses” receiving an Oscar nomination, and “Cookie’s Fortune.” Ms. Neal’s television work included as Senator Margaret Chase Smith in “Tail Gunner” receiving an Emmy Award, “The Homecoming: A Christmas Story” receiving a Golden Globe Award. On Broadway her appearances included “The Voice of the Turtle,” “Another Part of the Forest” receiving the Tony Award, and “The Children’s Hour.” In London she appeared in Clifford Odets’ “Clash by Night.” Ms. Neal was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame. Glenda Jackson played her in a television movie, “The Patricia Neal Story.” Her autobiography, “As I Am,” was published in 1988. In 1978, Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center in Knoxville dedicated the Patricia Neal Rehabilitation Center in her honor. Ms. Neal died on August 8, 2010. (The interview was conducted in 2006.)
Mr. Orbach gained worldwide fame for his starring role for twelve years as NYPD Detective Lennie Briscoe on “Law & Order” receiving an Emmy nomination. An accomplished stage actor, he created the role of El Gallo in the original 1960 cast of “The Fantastiks,” the first to perform the show's song, “Try to Remember.” He starred on Broadway as Chuck Baxter in “Promises, Promises,” receiving the Tony Award, “The Three Penny Opera,” “Carnival!,” “Guys and Dolls,” and in the original productions of “Chicago” as Billy Flynn receiving a Tony Award nomination, “42nd Street.” His film and television appearances also include “Prince of the City,” “Dirty Dancing,” “Crimes candelabrum, Lumière in Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast,” “Chinese Coffee” with Al Pacino, “Golden Girls,” “Who’s the Boss?,” and “Frazier.” He was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame, and was named a "Living Landmark" by the New York Landmarks Conservancy. A portion of New York City's 53rd Street near Eighth Avenue was renamed “Jerry Orbach Way” in his honor. Mr. Orbach died in 2004. (The interview was conducted in 2000).
Ms. Page has toured in her acclaimed new play, “Turning Page” as her mother, Geraldine Page directed by Wilson Milam, and in her award-winning solo play, “Edge,” as Sylvia Plath around the world and across America, receiving an Outer Critics Circle nomination, and New Times Award. She has also appeared on Broadway in “Side Man” in London's West End, and at Washington, D.C,’s Kennedy Center, receiving a Helen Hayes Award, in the national tour of “August: Osage County,” receiving a Helen Hayes Award nomination, and in “The Best Man.” Ms. Page’s first professional debut was standby for the late Natasha Richardson on Broadway in “Anna Christie.” She played the lead in “Machinal" at The Actors Studio in New York City, and has appeared Off-Broadway opposite Elizabeth Ashley in “The Red Devil Battery Sign,” and regionally in Edward Albee's “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf,” directed by Michael Wilson, receiving a Carbonell Award nomination. Her television appearances include “Law & Order,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “The Sopranos,” “Law & Order: Criminal Intent,” “Ruby's Bucket of Blood” opposite Angela Bassett, and “Songs in Ordinary Time” opposite her cousin, Sissy Spacek. Ms. Page’s film work includes “Nobody’s Fool,” “The Sixth Sense,” “Fast Food Fast Women,” “The Hungry Ghosts” directed by Michael Imperioli, and “Domestic Disturbance” opposite John Travolta. Her parents are Rip Torn, and the late Geraldine Page.
Regarded as one of the most foremost Canadian actors of his generation, Mr. Plummer is probably best known as Captain Georg von Trapp opposite Julie Andrews in “The Sound of Music.” He received the Academy Award for “Beginners,” and an Academy Award nomination as Leo Tolstoy in “The Last Station” with Helen Mirren. He received Tony Awards for his performances in Anthony Burgess’ musical, “Cyrano,” and as John Barrymore in “Barrymore” receiving the Drama Desk Award and Outer Critics Circle Award. Among his Broadway appearances include opposite Katharine Cornell and Tyrone Power in “The Dark is Light Enough” receiving a Theatre World Award, The Starcross Story opposite Eva La Gallienne, “The Lark” with Julie Harris, “J.B.” directed by Elia Kazan, “The Royal Hunt of the Sun,” as Iago in “Othello” opposite James Earl Jones, “Macbeth opposite” Glenda Jackson, “No Man’s Land” with Jason Robards receiving Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle nominations, “Inherit the Wind” receiving a Tony nomination, and a Drama Desk Award, “The Good Doctor,” and in “King Lear” receiving a Tony nomination. In Paris, he appeared opposite Dame Judith Anderson in “Medea.” Mr. Plummer was a leading member of Britain’s National Theatre under Sir Laurence Olivier, and the Royal Shakespeare Company led by Sir Peter Hall, where he performed in Beckett receiving the Evening Standard Theatre Award. With the Stratford Festival of Canada, under Sir Tyrone Guthrie, he performed in many great roles, including as Julius Caesar in Shaw’s “Caesar and Cleopatra,” and as Prospero in “The Tempest.” Mr. Plummer’s films include “The Fall of the Roman Empire,” “The Night of the Generals,” “The Man Who Would Be King” with Michael Caine, “The Royal Hunt of the Sun,” “Murder by Decree,” “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” “Battle of Britain,” “Waterloo,” “Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country,” as Aristotle in “Alexander,” as Mike Wallace in “The Insider,” and “Remember.” Television appearances include “Hamlet at Elsinore,” “The Thorn Birds,” “Nuremberg,” “American Tragedy” receiving a Golden Globe nomination, “Our Fathers” receiving an Emmy nomination, and co-starred with Gregory Peck in “The Scarlet and the Black.” Mr. Plummer’s autobiography, “In Spite of Myself: A Memoir” was published in 2008. Mr. Plummer has won many honors in Canada,the UK, America, and Austria, invested as Companion of the Order of Canada, received the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award, inducted into the American Hall of Fame, and Canada’s Walk of Fame.
Known for his memorable film work including as the President in “Independence Day,” Mr. Pullman also appeared on Broadway with Julia Stiles in “Oleanna,” opposite Mercedes Ruehl in Edward Albee’s play, “The Goat, or Who is Sylvia?” at Second Stage in Edward Albee’s “Peter and Jerry,” receiving Drama Desk nominations, and in “The Subject was Roses” at Washington, D.C.’s Kennedy Center. Mr. Pullman’s other films include “The Accidental Tourist” receiving an Academy Award nomination, “Red Sky,” “Cymbeline,” “The Equalizer,” “Independence Day: Resurgence,” “LBJ,” “Rocket Gibraltar,” “Brain Dead,” “Home Fires Burning,” “Liebestraum,” “A League of Their Own,” “Crazy in Love,” “End of Days” miniseries, “Revelations,” “Ruthless People,” “Spaceballs,” “The Serpent and the Rainbow,” “While You Were Sleeping,” “Lost Highway,” “The Grudge,” “Scary Movie 4,” “Nobel Son,” “surveillance,” “Bottle Shock,” “Phoebe in Wonderland,” “Kerosene Cowboys,” “The Killer Inside Me,” “Peacock” opposite Susan Sarandon, “Lola Versus,” and “The Innocent.” His television appearances include “Night Visions,” “Tiger Cruise,” “Revelations,” “Too Big to Fail,” “Innocent,” as Oswald Dances in “Torchwood: Miracle Day,” and as President Dale Gilchrist in “1600 Penn.” Off Broadway, Mr. Pullman appeared as Wesley in a revival of “The Curse of the Starving Class” with Kathy Bates. At the Los Angeles Theatre Company, his appearances include “Barabbas,” “All My Sons,” “Demon Wine” and “Control Freaks.” As a stage director, Mr. Pullman directed and played the title role in “The Virginian,” which received the Wrangler Award for Best Picture. Mr. Pullman’s play, “Expedition 6,” was performed at San Francisco’s Magic Theatre and at New York Stage and Film’s Powerhouse Theater.
The first actress to win multiple Academy Awards consecutively for “The Great Ziegfeld” starring opposite William Powell and Myrna Loy, and “The Good Earth” opposite Paul Muni, produced by Irving Thalberg. Ms. Rainer began acting in Germany, and was trained by Austria's leading stage director, Max Reinhardt, becoming a distinguished Berlin stage actress with Reinhardt's Vienna theater ensemble. She appeared in several productions including “Men in White,” “Saint Joan,” “Measure for Measure,” and Pirandello’s “Six Characters in Search of an Author.” In Hollywood, Ms. Rainer’s other films included “The Great Waltz,” “The Emperor’s Candlesticks” with Spencer Tracy, “The Toy Wife,” “Dramatic School” with Paulette Goddard, and later in her life in “The Gambler.” Ms. Rainer’s appearances in television over the years included Lux Video Theatre, Sunday Night Theatre, “Suspense,” “Combat!,” “The Love Boat” and “A Dancer.” She was married to the renowned playwright, Clifford Odets, for three years in Hollywood. Ms. Rainer continued her work in the theater appearing in “Behold the Bride” in London, “Saint Joan” in Washington, D.C. directed by Erwin Piscator, and on Broadway in “A Kiss for Cinderella.” She received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Ms. Rainer died in 2014 at the age of 104. (The interview was conducted in 2003.)
Best known for his role as Felix Unger on television in “The Odd Couple” with Jack Klugman for five years, for which he received the Emmy Award, and in 1991, launching the National Actors Theatre in New York City bringing great classical repertoire to today’s audiences. His extensive television and film work included “Mr. Peepers,” “Love Sidney,” “Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter?” with Rick Hudson and Doris Day receiving a Golden Globe Award, “Let’s Make Love” with Marilyn Monroe and Yves Montand, “The Mating Game,” “The King of Comedy” with Robert De Niro and Jerry Lewis, “Pillow Talk,” and as nearly all the leading characters in “The Seven Faces of Dr. Lao.” Mr. Randall’s Broadway appearances included “The Corn is Green” with Ethel Barrymore, “Candida” with Jane Cowl, “Inherit the Wind” with Paul Muni, “M. Butterfly,” “Oh Captain!” receiving a Tony Award nom.), and “The Music Man.” Among the productions of the National Actors Theatre included “The Irresistible Rise of Arturo Ui” with Al Pacino and John Goodman, “Saint Joan” with Joan Plunkett, “The Sea Gull,” “Inherit the Wind,” “The Inspector General,” “The Odd Couple” with Jack Klugman, “The Master Builder” (which he directed), “The Flowering Peach,” “The School for Scandal,” “The Gin Game,” “Night Must Fall” with Matthew Broderick, starred in “A Christmas Carol,” “Three Men on a Horse,” “The Sunshine Boys” with Jack Klugman, and final stage performance in “Right You Are (if You Think You Are)” in 2003. Mr. Randall was nominated for five Golden Globe Awards, received New York City’s Gold Medal Award, City College of New York’s John H. Finley Award, had been the National Chairman of the Myasthenia Graves Foundation for many years, and was inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame. Mr. Randall died in 2004. (The interview was conducted in 2003.)
Recipient of the 2016 Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Leading Actress in a Play for her performance as “Shelah” in Tarell Alvin Mcraney's “Head of Passes” at the Public Theater. Ms. Rashad has had an enduring career on stage, in television, and film. The first African-American actress to win a Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actress as 'Lena Younger' in Lorraine Hansberry's “A Raisin in the Sun,” receiving a Drama Desk award on Broadway. Other notable Broadway appearances include “August: Osage County,” “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” opposite James Earl Jones, 'Aunt Ester' in “Gem of the Ocean” receiving a Tony Award nomination, “Blue,” “Jelly’s Last Jam,” “Into the Woods,” and “Ain’t Supposed to Die a Natural Death.” She has also appeared Off-Broadway in “Everybody’s Ruby” at New York’s Public Theatre, “Cymbeline,” “The Duplex,” and “Bernarda Alba”at Lincoln Center Theatre, “Helen,” “Puppet Play,” “Zooman and the Sign,” “Sons and Fathers of Sons,” “In an Upstate Motel,” “Weep Not for Me,” “The Great Mac Daddy” at the Negro Ensemble Company,” and “The Sirens” at MTC. Ms. Rashad’s regional work includes “Medea” and “Blues for an Alabama Sky” at the Alliance Theatre, “Every Tongue Confesses” at Arena Stage, and “Gem of the Ocean” at Huntington Stage. Ms. Rashad's best known television roles as 'Claire Huxtable' on “The Cosby Show” and 'Ruth Lucas' on “Cosby” receiving many awards and honors including NAACP Image Awards, People's Choice Awards, and Emmy nominations. Among her film appearances include “Creed,” Tyler Perry's “Good Deeds,” and Perry's film of Ntozake Shange’s “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When The Rainbow Is Enuf.” As a director, she made her directorial debut at the Seattle Repertory Theater with “Gem of the Ocean” and has helmed productions at prestigious theaters throughout the United States including The Goodman Theater, Ebony Repertory Theatre, Westport Country Playhouse, the McCarter Theatre, and the Long Wharf Theatre.
Ms. Rivera has won two Tony Awards as Best Leading Actress in a Musical, and received eight additional Tony nominations. On Broadway she starred in “The Visit,” the final John Kander/Fred Ebb/Terrence McNally musical directed by John Doyle, “The Mystery of Edwin Drood,” the Broadway and touring productions of “The Dancer’s Life,” written by Terrence McNally, directed by Graciela Daniele, opposite Antonio Banderas in “Nine,” as Anita in the original Broadway and London premiere of “West Side Story,” and on Broadway and internationally starring in “Bye Bye Birdie,” “The Rink,” “Chicago,” “Jerry’s Girls,” “Kiss of the Spider Woman,” and the original Broadway casts of “Guys and Dolls,” “Can-Can,” “Seventh Heaven” and “Mr. Wonderful.” On tour, she also starred in “Born Yesterday,” “The Rose Tattoo,” “Call Me Madam,” “Threepenny Opera,” “Sweet Charity,” “Kiss Me Kate,” “Zorba,” and “Can-Can” with The Rockettes. Ms. Rivera was awarded The Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama, and is the first Hispanic woman ever chosen to receive the Kennedy Center Honors. Great Performances aired the special “Chita Rivera: A Lot of Livin’ to Do,” a retrospective on her life and career on PBS. She created a solo CD entitled “And Now I Swing.” Her most treasured production is her daughter, singer/dancer/choreographer, Lisa Mordente.
Instantly recognizable as Police Chief Brody in Steven Spielberg’s “Jaws” opposite Robert Shaw and Richard Dreyfuss, and in the television series, seaQuest, Mr. Scheider was nominated for two Academy Awards, a Golden Globe Award, and a BAFTA Award. His many films included “The French Connection” with Gene Hackman, “52 Pick-Up,” “Klute,” “Marathon Man” with Dustin Hoffman and Laurence Olivier, “All That Jazz,” “Jaws 2,” “Blue Thunder,” and “The Russia House” with Sean Connery. He appeared on Broadway in Harold Pinter’s “Betrayal.” Mr. Scheider’s television appearances included “Jacobo Timmerman: Prisoner Without a Name; Cell Without a Number,” “RKO 281.” “King of Texas” with Patrick Stewart and Marcia Gay Harden,” and he hosted “Saturday Night Live.” He helped to found the Hayground School in Bridgehampton, New York, with poet, Kathy Engle, dedicated to creating an innovative, culturally diverse learning environment for local children. Mr. Scheider died in 2008. (The interview was conducted in 2002.)
In a career spanning over 60 years, she received numerous awards and nominations, appearing in 1,809 Broadway performances of Deathtrap on Broadway, mentioned in Guinness Book of World Records as "most durable actress. Her Broadway and Off-Broadway appearances include “Medea” with Judith Anderson, directed by Sir John Gielgud, “Ondine,” “The Chalk Garden,” “The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore,” “Tiny Alice,” “A Delicate Balance” receiving a Tony Award, “Equus,” “Painting Churches,” “Three Tall Women,” “The Play About the Baby,” “45 Seconds from Broadway,” “Dinner at Eight,” “Ring Round the Moon,” “Father’s Day receiving a Drama Desk Award, “Painting Churches” receiving an Outer Circle Critics Award, “The Butterfly Collection,” and “Isadora Duncan Sleeps with the Russian Navy” receiving an Obie Award. She appeared in 179 episodes of the CBS Radio Mystery Theater. Ms. Seldes’ film and television appearances include “The Greatest Story Ever Told,” “Truman,”” Affliction,” “Duets,” “Town & Country,” “Mona Lisa Smile,” “Gunsmoke,” “Perry Mason,” “Frazier,” and as Aunt Brooke on “Murphy Brown.” Ms. Seldes was a member of the drama faculty of The Juilliard School from 1967 to 1991. Her students included Kevin Kline, Christopher Reeve, Robin Williams, Kelsey Grammer, William Hurt, Patti LuPone, and Kevin Spacey. She also taught at Fordham University. She was married for almost a decade to playwright/screenwriter Garson Kanin. Ms. Seldes died in 2014. (The interview was conducted in 2001.)
Considered one of the most versatile actresses in Malaysia, she has acted in diverse roles in the performing arts and on international tours in Malaysia, Singapore, India, Indonesia, England, and Bali. Ms. Shaik formed her own theatre company, Masakini Theatre, producing some of her own plays, new works, and her one-woman plays, including “Lady Swettenham,” directed by Tage Larsen, which she performed in Holstebro and London, New Delhi, and at Mumbai’s NCPA Theatre Festival, “My Bollywood Summer,” “Naga Women,” “In the Name of Love,” by the acclaimed dancer Ramli Ibrahim, as Mrs. Wicksteed in Alan Bennett's “Habeas Corpus,” and “Happy Days.” Ms. Shaik directed “Wayang,” with Chi Azim, the first shadow theatre in Malaysia, and directed and produced a new shadow theatre production, “The Story of Kuala Lumpur.”
Best known as a film heroine of the 1930s, her films during the Great Depression included Josef von Sternberg's “An American Tragedy,” “City Streets” with Gary Cooper, Elmer Rice and King Vidor's “Street Scene,” William Wyler’s “Dead End” with Humphrey Bogart, three films by Fritz Lang: “Fury” with Spencer Tracy, “You Only Live Once” opposite Henry Fonda, and “You and Me,” Alfred Hitchcock’s “Sabotage,” and “The Trail of the Lonesome Pine” with Fred MacMurray and Henry Fonda. Ms. Sidney also appeared in the films including “Blood on the Sun” with James Cagney, as Fantine in “Les Misérables,” “One Third of a Nation,” “I Never Promised You a Rose Garden,” “Summer Wishes” received an Academy Award nomination, “Winter Dreams,” “Hammett,” Tim Burton’s “Beetlejuice,” “Used People” with Shirley MacLaine and Marcello Mastroianni, and “Mars Attacks!” Her television appearances included “WKRP in Cincinnati,” “Magnum, P.I.,” “Fantasy Island,” and Ms. Sidney received a Golden Glove Award for “An Early Frost.” She appeared on Broadway over five decades including “Gods of the Lightning,” The Group Theatre’s “The Gentle People,” Tennessee Williams’ “Vieux Carré,” “The Fourposter,” and “Barefoot in the Park.” She received The George Eastman Award in 1982. Ms. Sidney died in 1999. (The interview was conducted in 1998.)
For over thirty years, Ms. Valk has been performing in New York City with The Wooster Group at the Performing Garage. Ms. Valk joined The Wooster Group in 1979, and two years later, performed in her first Wooster Group role in “Route 1 & 9,” a version of Thornton Wilder's “Our Town.” Her Wooster Group performances include “L.S.D. (... Just the High Points…)" based on Arthur Miller's “The Crucible,” in Eugene O’Neill’s “The Hairy Ape” opposite Willem Dafoe, “Brace Up!” from Chekhov's “Three Sisters,” “House/Lights” based on Gertrude Stein's ‘Dr. Faustus Lights the Lights,” “Eugene O'Neill's “The Emperor Jones” in “Hamlet” “To You, The Birdie! Phèdre,” “North Atlantic,” Tennessee Williams’ “Vieux Carré,” and “Thr Room.” Ms. Valk directed The Wooster Group's “Early Shaker Spirituals,” at St. Ann's Warehouse. She founded and serves as the director emerita of two arts education programs with The Wooster Group, an in-school theater curriculum at Dr. Sun Yat Sen Middle School in Chinatown begun in 1992, and The Wooster Group's Summer Institute, a free three-week workshop for public high school students. Ms. Valk has received an Obie award for Sustained Excellence in Performance, and a “Bessie" Award.
A founding member of The Actors Studio, Mr. Wallach received an Honorary Academy Award at the age of 94. His many Broadway appearances include his Tony Award-winning performance in “The Rose Tattoo” opposite Maureen Stapleton, “Mister Roberts,” “The Teahouse of the August Moon,” “Camino Real,” “The Cold Wind and the Warm” directed by Harold Clurman, “The House of Blue Leaves,” “The Price,” and “Rhinoceros” opposite Zero Mostel. On stage, he often co-starred with his wife, Anne Jackson, becoming one of the best-known acting couples in the American theater, playing in “The Typists and The Tiger,” “Waltz of the Toreadors,” “The Diary of Anne Frank,” and “Cafe Crown.” Mr. Wallach’s Off-Broadway appearance included “The Chairs,” “The Lesson,” and “Visiting Mr. Green. His notable film and television appearances included “Baby Doll” receiving a Golden Globe nomination, “The Magnificent Seven,” “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly,” “The Godfather Part III,” “Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps,” “Tough Guys” opposite Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas, and “The Misfits” co-starring with Marilyn Monroe, Montgomery Clift and Clark Gable, “The Poppy is also a Flower” receiving an Emmy Award, as Mr. Freeze in the “Batman & Robin “series, and “Highway to Heaven.” Mr. Wallach died in 2014. (The interview was conducted in 1998).
Mr. Weaver made his Broadway debut in “The Chalk Garden” receiving a Tony Award nomination and a Theatre World Award. His other Broadway appearances include “A Shot in the Dark,” “A Tale Told,” “Angel’s Fall,” “Protective Custody,” “Miss Lonely Hearts,” “All American,” “Lorenzo in the White House,” as Sherlock Holmes in “Baker Street,” “My Fair Lady,” “Absurd Person Singular,” “The Price,” “Ring ‘Round the Moon,” and “Child’s Play” receiving the Tony Award. Off-Broadway he appeared in “The White Devil,” receiving the Clarence Derwent Award, “The Power and the Glory,” “Peer Gynt,” a solo play as Lincoln, “Love Letters,” “Don Juan in Hell,” “A Life” receiving a Drama League nomination, “Trying’ receiving a Joseph Jefferson Award, and “The Voysey Inheritance.” His television work included starring as Josef Weiss in the miniseries, “Holocaust,’ receiving an Emmy nomination, “The Martian Chronicles,” “Twilight Zone,” “Mission Impossible,” “L.A. Law,” “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” “The X-Files,” “Frasier,” and “Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight.” Mr. Weaver acted as Hamlet in 1968, Richard II, Henry VI, and Macbeth at the American Shakespeare Festival in Stratford, Connecticut, and as King Lear at the Shakespeare Theatre in Washington, D.C., in 1991. His film appearances include “Fail-Safe,” “Day of the Dolphin,” “Marathon Man,” “A Walk in the Spring Rain,” “Black Sunday,” “Demon Seed,” and “The Thomas Crown Affair.” Mr. Weaver was inducted into the Players Hall of Fame and Theatre Hall of Fame. Mr. Weaver died in 2016. (This interview was conducted in 1999.)
MARTHA CARPENTER, ALVIN COLT, EVERETT RAYMOND KINSTLER, TARA SABHARWAL, TIM STEVENSON, PAUL TAZEWELL
Considered one of the premiere portrait artists of America, Martha Carpenter’s paintings are permanently exhibited nationwide, in private homes, institutions, and corporate offices, her career involving numerous exhibitions, publications and recognitions. As a participant in a Salon des Nations Exhibition promoting independent American artists, five of her paintings were accepted and exhibited at the Centre International D’Art Contemporain in Paris. For the major part of a forty-year career in the field of portrait painting, Ms. Carpenter has enjoyed affiliations with the nation’s foremost portrait agencies which she credits as being instrumental in her pursuit of artistic and personal accomplishments.
Mr. Colt was one of the American Theater’s leading costume designers. He made his Broadway debut with the original production of George Abbott’s “On the Town,” choreographed by Jerome Robbins in 1944. He designed over two hundred productions for Broadway, in film and television. Among them included the original productions of “Guys and Dolls,” “Fanny,” “Li’l Abner,” “The Lark” with Julie Harris and Boris Karloff receiving the Tony Award, “Top Banana” with Phil Silvers, “Wildcat” withLucille Ball, “Sugar,” “Finian’s Rainbow,” “Lorelei,” “Destry Rides Again,” Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Pipe Dream” receiving the Tony Award, “Fanny” directed by Joshua Logan, and “Waiting in the Wings” with Lauren Bacall and Rosemary Harris. Off Broadway, he designed several shows including “Forbidden Broadway: 2001 A Spoof Odyssey.” His costume designs for films and television included “Top Banana,” “Li’l Abner,” “Kiss Me Kate,” “The Night of 100 Stars,” fifteen Tony Award shows, and “The Adams Chronicles,” creating over two hundred costumes for the thirteen episodes. He designed sixteen plays for the Phoenix Theatre, including “Mary Stuart” with Eva Le Gallienne and Irene Worth, John Houseman’s “Coriolanus,” and “The Sea Gull” with Montgomery Clift. In 2007, the Museum of the City of New York presented the exhibition "Costumes and Characters: The Designs of Alvin Colt." He was inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame. Mr. Colt died in 2008. (The interview was conducted in 2002.)
Al Hirschfeld’s drawings stand as one of the most innovative efforts in establishing the visual language of modern art through caricature in the 20th century. A self-described “characterist,” his signature work, defined by a linear calligraphic style, appeared in virtually every major publication of the last nine decades, including a seventy-five-year relationship with “The New York Times,” as well as numerous book and record covers and fifteen postage stamps. He is represented in many public collections, including the Metropolitan, the Whitney, the National Portrait Gallery, and Harvard’s Theater Collection. Mr. Hirschfeld authored several books including “Manhattan Oases” and “Show Business is No Business,” in addition to ten collections of his work. He was declared a ‘Living Landmark’ by the New York City Landmarks Commission in 1996, and a ‘Living Legend’ by the Library of Congress in 2000. Just before his death he learned he was to be awarded the Medal of Arts from the National Endowment of the Arts and was inducted into the Academy of Arts and Letters. The winner of two Tony Awards, he was given the ultimate Broadway accolade on what would have been his 100th birthday in June, 2003. The Martin Beck Theater in New York City was renamed the Al Hirschfeld Theater. Mr. Hirschfeld died in 2003. (The interview was conducted in 1998).
EVERETT RAYMOND KINSTLER
One of the nation's foremost portrait painters, he studied at the Art Students League, where he later taught from 1969 to 1974. Mr. Kinstler's more than twelve hundred portraits include Tony Bennett, Carol Burnett, James Cagney, Betty Ford, Gene Hackman, Lady Bird Johnson, Paul Newman, Peter O'Toole, Gregory Peck, and John Wayne, as well as writers including Arthur Miller, Ayn Rand, Tennessee Williams, and Tom Wolfe; Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Harry Blackmun; business and government leaders, among them: John D. Rockefeller lll, Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, six U.S. Governors, four U.S. Secretaries of State, and the presidents of universities and colleges including Brown, Harvard, Oklahoma, Princeton, and Yale. He has painted over fifty cabinet officers, including Presidents Richard Nixon, Gerald R. Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. Mr. Kinstler’s portraits of Ford and Reagan are the official White House portraits. His portraits of Katharine Hepburn, James Cagney, Christopher Plummer, Jason Robards, Jr., Alfred Drake, and Jose Ferrer can be found on the walls of The Players in New York City in The Kinstler Room. More than fifty of his works are in the permanent collection of The National Portrait Gallery, and his work is also in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Brooklyn Museum, among others. The National Portrait Gallery acquired seventy-five original works for its permanent collection. Mr. Kinstler received the Copley Medal from the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery.
Named one of the “World’s Top 100 Photographers” for three consecutive years by Graphis, Mr. Kohanim is a successful photographer for thirty years. In 2004, he opened his own Fine Art Gallery in Atlanta. He has been a Canon “Explorer of Light” since 1994 when the program was initiated worldwide. His Fine Art images were part of an exhibit of American artists shown at the Taylor Foundation in Paris, and are now in a permanent collection in Barbizon, France, and in several galleries across America. He has been created a unique collaboration with Cirque du Soleil performers. Mr. Kohanim’s ad photography has appeared in many national magazines including “Vogue,” “Harper’s Bazaar,” “Forbes,” “Time, “Newsweek.” Mr. Kohanim’s work has been featured on the covers of “Graphis Nudes,” “Communication Arts,” “Professional Photographer,” “Digital Photo Pro,” and featured articles about his work. His clients have included many of the Fortune 500 companies including IBM, AT&T, Coca-Cola, Hanes, and Kimberly Clark. Mr. Kohanim is the recipient of many awards over the years.
MING CHO LEE
One of the world’s pre-eminent scenic designers, Mr. Lee has designed nationally and internationally for fifty years, for opera, dance, Broadway, and regional theatre. He designed the sets for over twenty Broadway shows including “K-2” for which he received the Tony Award, “Two Gentlemen of Verona,” “Mother Courage and Her Children,” “King Lear,” “The Shadow Box,” “The Glass Menagerie,” “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf,” among others. He was the principal designer for the New York Shakespeare Festival from 1962 to 1973 over fifty productions including “Peer Gynt,” and “Hair,” virtually all of the Shakespeare canon. He has also designed for Martha Graham, American Ballet Theatre, Joffrey Ballet, thirteen productions for the New York City Opera, eight productions at the Metropolitan Opera, Arena Stage, Mark Taper Forum, and the Guthrie Theatre. Mr. Lee is the former co-chair of the Design department of Yale School of Drama, and holds the Donald Oenslager Chair in Design. The recipient of the National Medal of Arts, his other awards include the Mayor's Award for Arts and Culture; Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement, Helen Hayes Award, Drama Desk Awards, Outer Critic's Circle Awards and the TCG Theatre Practitioner Award. He was inducted into the American Hall of Fame. His work was given a retrospective at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, in Taiwan, in China, and at the Yale School of Architecture. A book, “Ming Cho Lee: A Life in Design” written by Arnold Aronson was published in 2012.
CAROLYN D PALMER
An accomplished sculptor, many of her works are displayed in prominent museums and public venues as well as in various private collections across America and the world. Ms. Palmer’s work includes bronze busts of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt in the main lobby of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum in Hyde Park, New York. She also created a marble bust of Pope Francis displayed in the entrance of the Papal Residence in New York City for his visit to the U.S. in 2015. The Holy Pontiff performed a special benediction over the sculpture. Her first bronze edition of Pope Francis is in Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in NYC. Ms. Palmer also created sculptures of Thomas Jefferson for the prestigious Jefferson Center in Syracuse New York, and sculptures of Orville and Wilbur Wright at the Sanford Orlando Airport in Florida. She also sculpted a life-size bronze figure of Lucille Ball for Lucy's hometown in Jamestown New York. Ms. Palmer's sculptures can also be seen in the television series, “Madam Secretary.”
An acclaimed artist, Ms. Sabharwal was born in New Delhi, and currently resides in New York City. She has had solo exhibitions of her paintings, and prints around the world including in New Delhi, Bangalore, London, New York City, Dusseldorf, Orvieto, Katsuyama, Karachi, Mumbai, Konstanz, Leeds, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Darlington, Versailles, and Portugal. Ms. Sabharwal has taught art at the Guggenheim Museum, Cooper Union, City University of New York, the Rubin Museum of Art, and in New York City public schools as a teaching artist. Her work is in the collection of the British Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, New York Public Library, Boston’s Peabody Essex Museum, and the Library of Congress in Washington DC. Ms. Sabharwal has received several commissions and grants, and most recently, the 2015 Joan Mitchell “Creating a Living Legacy Grant,” and the 2015 Gottlieb award.
One of America’s finest landscape painters, he has been painting for over forty years in the tradition of the ‘Old Masters.’ A native-born Alabama artist, he ‘drew pictures for cookies’ at age three. His intermittent excursions into art included cartooning, advertising, illustration and billboard painting along the way. The Carnegie Visual Arts Center in Decatur, Alabama had a solo exhibition of over sixty of Mr. Stevenson’s most recent works featuring the peaceful vistas of the Tennessee Valley, vivid still life and thoughtful figurative paintings in watercolor and oil. For nine years, he taught painting and drawing at his namesake art studio and school, and now teaches a small group of students twice a month in Tuscumbia.
Mr. Tazewell received the 2016 Tony Award for best costume design for Lin Manual Miranda’s Tony Award production of “Hamilton” on Broadway, and he designed the costumes for the TV HBO drama, “The Immortal Life of Hanreitta Lacks” starring Oprah Winfrey, “The Wiz Live!” with Queen Latifah, Mary J. Blige, and Chanice Williams on NBC. He has been designing costumes for theater, dance, opera, and film for over twenty-five years across America, and around the world. His designs on Broadway include “Dr. Zhivago,” “Side Show,” “Jesus Christ Superstar,” “Memphis,” “In the Heights,” “Lombardi,” “A Streetcar Named Desire,” “The Color Purple,” “A Raisin in the Sun,” Caroline, or Change,” and “Bring in 'Da Noise, Bring in 'Da Funk.” He has designed productions for many prestigious institutions including the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Pacific Northwest Ballet Company, English National Opera, Bolshoi Ballet, Guthrie Theatre, Washington D.C.’s Arena Stage, Stratford Shakespeare Festival, and the Kennedy Center. Off-Broadway his designs include “Hamilton,” “Flesh and Blood,” “Harlem Song,” “One Flea Spare,” “Blade to the Heat,” “Henry V,” “Purlie,” “Lost in the Stars,” “Little Me,” “Boston Marriage,” “Venus,” “It’s a Bird, it’s a Plane, it's Superman,” and “Fetch Clay, Make Man.” He given numerous master classes at universities across the country. He has also taught costume design as a guest instructor at NYU, and was on the faculty at Carnegie Mellon University from 2003-2006. He has received six Tony Award nominations, a Drama Desk nomination, two Lucille Lortel Awards, four Helen Hayes Awards, and he received the Princess Grace Statuette award. The Metropolitan Museum of Art also invited him to participate in The Artist Project.
LORI BELILOVE JACQUES D’AMBOISE GRACIELA DANIELE KATHERINE DUNHAM ANNA HALPRIN BILL T. JONES MEREDITH MONK PILAR RIOJA
Founder, Artistic Director and choreographer of The Isadora Duncan Dance Company & Foundation & Soloist, Ms. Belilove recognized as a premier interpreter and ambassador of the dance of Isadora Duncan. Among her teachers were first-generation Duncan dancers: Anna Duncan and Irma Duncan. Ms. Belilove is the lead dancer in the award-winning PBS documentary, “Isadora Duncan: Movement from the Soul,” narrated by Julie Harris. Touring extensively internationally, she created an affiliate Duncan school and performing company in Brazil. The Isadora Duncan Dance Company performed at the Moscow International Performing Arts Center and the Great Tchaikovsky Hall. She staged and danced as Isadora in “Isadora… No Apologies” at New York City’s Duke Theater, and her creations include “The Red Thread” at Alvin Ailey Citigroup Theater, “The Art of Isadora” at Judson Dance Theater, “Isadora Goes Downtown” at Dance New Amsterdam, “Isadora into the 21st Century,” “Perfumes of the Night,” and “Wind Sail.” As a master teacher, she has taught across America and around the world. She maintains a studio and school in New York City. Ms. Belilove has received the Mills College Distinguished Achievement Award.
Recognized as one of the finest classical dancers of our time. In 1976, while still a principal dancer with New York City Ballet, Mr. d’Amboise founded National Dance Institute. At the age of eight, he studied at the School of American Ballet with George Balanchine, Anatola Oboukhoff and Pierre Vladimiroff. At age twelve, he performed with Ballet Society, the immediate predecessor to New York City Ballet. Three years later, he joined New York City Ballet and the following year made his European debut at London’s Covent Garden. As Balanchine’s protégé, Mr. d’Amboise had more works choreographed specifically for him by The Ballet Master than any other dancer, including the ballets: “Stars and Stripes,” Tchaikovsky “Pas de Deux,” “Episodes,” “Figures in the Carpet,” “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “Jewels,” “Raymonda Variations,” “Meditation,” and “Brahms-Schoenberg Quartet.” He is best known for his roles in such distinctly American dance works as “Filling Station” and “Western Symphony.”He has also danced in several movies, including “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” and “Carousel.” As a choreographer, Mr. d’Amboise’s credits include almost twenty works commissioned for New York City Ballet. His ballets include “The Chase,” “Quatuor,” and “Irish Fantasy.” “He Makes Me Feel Like Dancin’,” a 1984 PBS documentary film about his work with NDI, won an Academy Award, six Emmy Awards, the Peabody Award, the Golden Cine Award, and the National Education Association Award. Mr. d'Amboise many awards include the Capezio Award, the Governor's Award of New York State, The Mayor’s Award for Arts & Culture, The National Medal of Arts, The Fred and Adele Astaire Award, and the Kennedy Center Honors.
As a director-choreographer her work on Broadway includes “The Most Happy Fella,” “The Pirates of Penzance,” “A History of the American Film,” “Chita Rivera: The Dancer’s Life,” “Annie Get Your Gun,” “Marie Christine” starring Audra MacDonald, “Once On This Island,” “Chronicle of a Death Foretold,” and “Dangerous Games.” As a choreographer, her work includes “Pal Joey,” “The Pirate Queen,” “Ragtime” (Astaire, Ovation, AACP, Callaway Awards), “The Goodbye Girl,” “Zorba” starring Anthony Quinn and Lila Kedrova, “The Rink” starring Chita Rivera and Liza Minnelli, “The Mystery of Edwin Drood,” and “The Visit” starring Chita Rivera and Roger Rees. Ms. Daniele conceived and directed “Tango Apasionada.” Ms. Daniele also choreographed “Hello Again,” “The New Brain,” “The Glorious Ones,” “Bernarda Alba” and “Dessa Rose” at Lincoln Center, “Little Fish” at Second Stage, the first to direct William Finn’s “March of the Falsettos” and “Falsettoland" at Hartford Stage, “Naughty Marrietta" at City Center, and “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream” at BAM, “Die Fledermaus” for the Opera Company in Boston, and “Alice in Concert,” a musical starring Meryl Streep at New York City’s Public Theatre. On Broadway, she also did the musical staging for “The Pirate Queen,” was the creative consultant for Barbara Cook’s one woman show, “Broadway!,” and movement consultant for Elaine Stritch in her one-woman show, “At Liberty.” Her film and television work includes “Pirates,” “Bullets Over Broadway,” “Mighty Aphrodite receiving the Fosse Award,” and “Everyone Says I Love You” receiving the Fosse Award. Ms. Daniele has received ten Tony nominations, and six Drama Desk nominations, and was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame.
She was considered the “The Grand Dame of American Dance,” having one of the most successful dance careers in American and European theater of the 20th century. For almost 30 years she maintained the Katherine Dunham Dance Company, and over her career she choreographed more than ninety individual dances. An innovator in African-American modern dance, she was a leader in dance anthropology. In 1945, she established the Dunham School of Dance and Theatre, influencing Peter Gennaro, Marlon Brando, Walter Nicks, Chita Rivera and Eartha Kitt. Among those she taught dance included Louis Armstrong, Canada Lee, and Langston Hughes. During 1943-1965 she toured the US and fifty-seven countries, on Broadway she danced in productions including “Cabin in the Sky” staged by George Balanchine, “Pins and Needles,” and ‘Bal Nègre.” She also performed in films including “Pardon My Sarong” with Abbott and Costello, “Carnival in Rhythm,” “Stormy Weather,” “Mambo,” and “The Bible.” Her major ballets included “Negro Rhapsody,” “L’Ag’Ya,” “Rites de Passage,” “Shango,” and “Southland.” She enjoyed a long association with the Southern Illinois Performing Arts Training Center. The Katherine Dunham Museum is located in East St. Louis. Among the many awards Ms. Dunham received include the Albert Schweitzer Award, Dance Teacher Magazine’s Lifetime Achievement Award, the J.F.K. Center Honors and a National Medal of Arts. She was inducted into the National Museum of Dance. Ms. Dunham died in 2006. (The interview was conducted in 2001.)
Ms. Halprin’s career has spanned the field of dance since the late 1930’s. In 1955 she founded the groundbreaking San Francisco Dancer’s Workshop, and the Tamalpa Institute in 1978 with her daughter, Daria Halprin. Her students include Meredith Monk, Trisha Brown, Yvonne Rainer, Simone Forti, Dohee Lee, Dana Lova-Koga, Shinichi Momo Lova-Koga, Isak Immanuel, G. Hoffman Soto, some of who were involved in the Judson Church Group. Over the years, her famous outdoor deck has been an explorative haven for numerous dancers and choreographers, including Merce Cunningham, Eiko and Koma, and Min Tanaka and Anne Collod, composers including John Cage, Luciano Berio, Terry Riley, LeMonte Young, and Morton Subotnick; visual artists including Robert Morris and Robert Whiteman, poets including Richard Brautigan, James Broughton, and Michael McClure. Ms. Halprin is an early pioneer in the expressive arts healing movement, leading numerous collaborative dance programs with terminally ill patients. For the past decade, she has led Circle the Earth, a contemporary community dance ritual to confront real-life issues facing participant communities around the world. Her “Planetary Dance: A Call for Peace” was staged in Berlin commemorating the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Potsdam Treaty ending World War II, and involved over four hundred participants. Ms. Halprin works also include the award-winning video “Returning Home,” “Song of Songs,” ‘Spirit of Place Intensive Care: Reflections on Death and Dying” at the Festival D’Automne in Paris, and Seniors Rocking. In 2006, The Museum of Contemporary Art presented a major one-woman exhibition of her life’s achievements. Ms. Halprin is the author of three books: “Moving Toward Life: Five Decades of Transformational Dance” with Rachel Kaplan, “Dance as A Healing Art,” and “Returning to Health: With Dance, Movement & Imagery.”
BILL T. JONES
One of the world’s extraordinary dancer/choreographers, Mr. Jones created with Arnie Zane, the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company in 1982. He also co-founded the American Dance Asylum in 1973. He has created more than fifty works for his own company, and for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Axis Dance Company, Boston Ballet, Lyon Opera Ballet, Berkshire Ballet, Berlin Opera Ballet, among others. He directed and performed in “Degga" with Toni Morrison and Max Roach at Alice Tully Hall, collaborated with Jessye Norman in “How! Do! We! Do!” as part of Lincoln Center’s Great Performers New Visions series. Mr. Jones also directed Sir Derek Walcott’s “Dream on Monkey Mountain” for the Guthrie Theatre. His work on TV includes “Fever Swamp” for PBS Great Performances, “Untitled,” “Last Supper at Uncle Tom’s Cabin/The Promised Land,”“Still/Here,” and his “D-Man in the Waters” aired on PBS in the documentary Free to Dance. A 1994 recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, he also has received three Bessies, an Izzy Award, the Dorothy B. Chandler Performing Arts Award, Dance Magazine Award, and served as the 1998 Robert Gwathmey Chair at Cooper Union. His memoir, “Last Night on Earth,” was published in 1995.
Director of the international touring Company, Mr. King’s LINES Ballet is located in San Francisco, with the Alonzo King LINES Ballet BFA at Dominican University of California, and Dance Center. Mr. King’s works are in the repertories of the Swedish Royal Ballet, Frankfurt Ballet, Ballet Bejart, Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo, Joffrey Ballet, Alvin Ailey, Hong Kong Ballet, North Carolina Dance Theatre, and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. He has worked extensively in opera, television, and film. Among his noted works include “Shostakovich,” “The Steady Heart,” “Concerto for Two Violins,” “Figures of Thought,” “Writing Ground,” “Wheel in the Middle of the Field,” “Scheherazade,” “Refraction, Dust and Light,” “The Steady Articulation of Perseverance,” “Rasa,” “High Sky,” “Migration,” “The Moroccan Project,” “Satoh,” “Before the Blues,” “Resin,” “Rite of Spring,” “The Patience of Aridity,” “Heart Song,” “Syzmanski's Vibraphone Quartet,” “The Heart's Natural Inclination,” “Klang,” “Sacred Text,”“Handel Pas de Deux,” “Rock,” “String,” “Fallen Angel,” “Awake in the Dream,” “Ligeti Variations,” “Reoccurrence,” “Prayer,” “Stealing Light,” and “Ictus.” His collaborations and seminal works include People of the Forest in 2001, choreographed with Baka artists from Central African Republic, and Long River High Sky in 2007, China’s Shaolin Monks, with actor, Danny Glover, legendary jazz saxophonist, Pharoah Sanders, Hamza al Din, Pawel Szymanski, Jason Moran, Charles Lloyd and tabla master, Zakir Hussain. Mr. King is a former commissioner for the city and county of San Francisco, and a writer and lecturer on the art of dance. Renowned for his skill as a teacher, Mr. King has been guest ballet master for dance companies around the globe. In 2012, he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Corps de Ballet International Teacher Conference, and many prestigious awards, including the first ever Barney Choreographic Prize from White Bird Dance, Jacob's Pillow Creativity Award, U.S. Artists award, Bessie Award, the Doris Duke Artist Award, and the Los Angeles Lehman Award. He was named a Master of Choreography by the Kennedy Center, and the Dance Heritage Coalition named Alonzo King an “Irreplaceable Dance Treasure.”
Renowned dancer, choreographer and teacher, she was known as an interpreter and propagator of the choreography style of Martha Graham. A student of Martha Graham and Louis Horst, she joined the Martha Graham Dance Company, and danced as a soloist from 1942 to 1952, and as a guest artist from 1954 through the late 1970’s. She was an original cast member in “Deaths and Entrances”, “Punch and the Judy,” “Land Be Bright,” “Imagined Wing,” “Diversion of Angels,” “Canticle for Innocent Comedians,” Dark Meadow,” “Night Journey,” and “Appalachian Spring.” On Broadway, she danced in “Carousel,” “Finian’s Rainbow,” and “Peer Gynt.” Ms. Lang created her own dance company in 1952, and choreographed sixty-three works for film, opera, and television. Her works were performed by the Dutch National Ballet, Boston Ballet, and the Batsheva Dance Company of Israel, and included “Song of Deborah,” “Rites,” “And Joy is my Witness,” “Black Marigolds,” “Tongues of Fire,”“I Never Saw Another Butterfly,” “A Seder Night,” “Kaddish,” “Song of Songs,” and “The Time is Out of Joint.” Ms. Lang taught at Jacob’s Pillow, the Julliard School, Yale School of Drama and in many dance festivals in America and abroad. Her students included Madonna and Pina Bausch. Among her many awards included two Guggenheim Fellowships, the Martha Graham Award, the National Foundation for Jewish Culture’s Cultural Achievement Award. She was inducted into The Dance Library of Israel’s Hall of Fame. She died in 2009. (The interview was conducted in 2001.)
Considered one of the world’s pre-eminent Spanish flamenco dancers, Ms. Rioja has been celebrated world-wide as the Queen of Spanish Dance. While she studied many dance forms in both Mexico and Spain, one of her greatest influences was Manolo Vargas. Ms. Rioja credits Vargas with teaching her that “in Spanish dance one’s whole body comes into play – one’s whole being from the feet to the fingers.” She has thrilled audiences around the world in many countries including the United States, Russia, Argentina, Spain, Colombia, Canada, Austria, and performed in New York City at Repertorio Espanol for thirty-three seasons beginning in 1973. Ms. Rioja has received many awards and honors including a Medal and diploma "Mi Vida en el Teatro" awarded by the International Theater Institute of Unesco.
Known as one of the most prolific director/choreographers of the twentieth century, he has received ten Tony Awards, which includes the 2015 Tony for Life Achievement in the Theatre. He is currently touring the country in his one-man show, “Taps, Tunes and Tall Tales.” Mr. Tune began his career as a dancer on “Broadway in Baker Street,” “A Joyful Noise,” and went on to appear in ‘The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas” and “How Now Dow Jones.” He received Tony Awards for his work either as a director or for performing on Broadway in “Seesaw,” “My One and Only” with Twiggy, “A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine,” “Grand Hotel,” “The Will Rogers Follies,” “Nine,” and “Grand Hotel.” In 2015, Mr. Tune appeared in the Encores! production of “Lady, Be Good!” at New York City Center. His film appearances include “Hello Dolly” opposite Barbra Streisand and Walter Matthau, directed by Gene Kelly, “The Boyfriend,” and “Mimi Bluette… fiore del mio giardino.” In 1999, he made his Las Vegas debut as the star of “EFX.” Mr. Tune is the recipient of the National Medal of Arts, honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, designated as a Living Landmark by the New York Landmarks Conservancy. He was awarded eight Drama Desk Awards, three Astaire Awards and the Society of Directors and Choreographers' George Abbott Award for Lifetime Achievement.
GREGG GOLDSTON BARRY LUBIN CRAIG MARIN ROB MERMIN DAVID SHINER
For over 40 years, Mr. Goldston has toured his solo art of mime performance, uniquely imbued with ballet and modern dance, across the U.S., Asia, and Europe. Creator and co-artistic director of The School of Modern Mime, an annual summer intensive in Warsaw, Poland. He developed BalletMime, a new vocabulary of ballet mime acting, which premiered on BalletMet’s Romeo & Juliet. Marcel Marceau became a mentor, a close friend, and served as Artistic Advisor to the Goldston Mime Foundation. Mr. Goldston performed as Marceau’s assistant on his 2000-2002 US tours, and took on lead roles with Mr. Marceau’s “Nouvelle Compagnie de Mimodrame” during its five week run at the American Repertoire Theatre of Harvard. He created a touring company, “The Invisible People,” and a Manhattan-based trio, “The Funny Bones,” and has presented his work Off-Broadway, and across New York City. Mr. Goldston’s TV appearances include “Law & Order,” “The Early Show,” and for F.A.O. Schwarz he created The Mechanical Man. As a mime coach, he worked with Anne Hathaway on “Ella Enchanted,” and with Julie Harris. Mr. Goldston also creates pen-and-ink drawings, and stainless steel & bronze sculptures.
Known as “Grandma”, Mr. Lubin graced New York’s famed one ring circus, Big Apple Circus with his delightful antics for twenty-five seasons where he became the “Face of the Big Apple Circus,” featured in its 20th anniversary production. Before that, he spent five years with the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey’s Clown Alley. He has appeared in the International Circus Festival of Monte Carlo twice, the only American clown to have received this honor. He has also appeared in the International Circus Festivals in Hungary, in Izhevsk and Moscow, Russia. Mr. Lubin is one of only two American clowns to appear in the 80-year history of prestigious Wintercirckus of Circus Krone in Munich Mr. Lubin was in the films, “Big Top Pee-Wee” and “My Life.” Mr. Lubin was featured in the PBS mini-series, “Circus.” He starred in Stars en Der Manege, Circo Massimo in Italy two times, and numerous other international television appearances. His television appearances include Prime Time Live, all of the morning programs on NBC, CBS, and ABC, PBS’s “Evening at Pops,” “Late Night with David Letterman” four times, and PBS’s mini-series, “Circus.” He served as writer/consultant for CBS’ “Circus of the Stars.” Mr. Lubin is the first performer in history to perform a running headstand onto a whoopee cushion on the hallowed stage of Carnegie Hall. Barry was inducted into the International Clown Hall of Fame in 2002, and the Sarasota Ring of Fame in 2012, the highest honor in American Circus. He received the Lou Jacobs Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007. He was a featured character in fifteen appearances both live and on NBC in the seventy-five-year history of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Mr. Lubin was inducted into the International Clown Hall of Fame, the Sarasota Ring of Fame – the highest honor in American Circus.
Puppet Master, Mr. Marin with his wife and partner, Olga Felgemacher, created The Flexitoons, and performed the Juke Box Puppet Band on Nickelodeon’s inaugural series, “Pinwheel” for 260 episodes, appearing alongside George Carlin and Ringo Starr, on the Emmy-winning “Shining Time Station,” on PBS. They pioneered interactive television, performing “Goin’ Up” on Channel 13/WNET. Mr. Marin has also portrayed DJ Kat on Fox Television. Their “Tide Talking Stain” is one of the Top Super Bowl Commercials of all time, and was voted the funniest office commercial in the world. The live Flexitoon Puppet Theatre has toured domestically and internationally, and is New York City's only permanent, professional institution dedicated to the puppets arts. Flexitoon received a Henson Foundation and a UNIMA Award for Outstanding Puppetry.
In 1987, Mr. Mermin founded the award-winning international touring company, Circus Smirkus, which has had cultural exchanges under the big top with over thirty countries, earning it the title "The United Nations of the Youth Circus World." Mr. Mermin ran off to the circus in 1969, clowning with various European circuses including Britain's Circus Hoffman, Sweden's Cirkus Scott, the Hungarian Magyr State Cirkusz, three years with Denmark's Circus Benneweis in the famous Circus Building by the Tivoli, and throughout the former Soviet Union. He trained with mime masters, Marcel Marceau and Etienne Decroux. Mr. Mermin co-founded Canada's Paul Gaulin Mime Troupe, appeared for two seasons on Denmark's popular weekly show, “TV 1 Teltet,” and toured Europe with the Sandglass Puppet Theater. He was Dean of Clown College for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, President of the All-Youth Blackfriars Summer Theater, and is Artist-in-Residence for the Vermont Arts Council. Mr. Mermin currently tours with a series of autobiographical one-man, multi-media shows at universities across America. He has written two books: “Circus Smirkus: True Tales of High Adventure” and “Low Comedy.” Mr. Mermin’s awards include Copenhagen's World Star-Time Clown, Vermont's Bessie Award, Russia’s Best Director Prize at the International Festival on the Black Sea, and the Governor's Award for Excellence in the Arts.
One of the world’s great clowns, Mr. Shiner is also an acclaimed actor, playwright and director, On Broadway, Mr. Shiner and Mr. Irwin’s two-man wordless show, “Fool Moon,” featuring music by the Red Clay Ramblers, ran for eight years receiving a Special Tony Award for Live Theatrical Presentation, a Drama Desk Award, and an Outer Critics Circle Award. Together they also appeared in their award-winning production of “Old Hats” at the Signature Theatre in New York City. Mr. Shiner originated the role of “The Cat in the Hat” in the stage musical, “Seussical.” He worked for various circuses including Cirque de Demain; the German troupe, Circus Roncalli, and the Swiss National company, Circus Knie. With Cirque du Soleil, he co-created and performed in “Nouvelle Expérience,” touring for nineteen months throughout Canada and the United States, and was the writer and director of “KOOZA.” Mr. Shiner’s film and television appearances include “Lorenzo’s Oil,” “Man of the House,” opposite Bill Irwin in Sam Shepard’s film, “Silent Tongue,” and numerous appearances on “The Tonight Show” with Johnny Carson and Jay Leno. He has also mentored and guest directed at Lilalu, a German youth circus program.
GRETCHEN CRYER ERVIN DRAKE MARVIN HAMLISCH SHELDON HARNICK CHARLES STROUSE JEANINE TESORI MELVIN VAN PEEBLES EVE WOLF
Best known for the pioneering musical, “I'm Getting My Act Together and Taking It On the Road,” which she performed in at The Public, and Circle-in-the-Square in New York City for three years. Ms. Cryer is part of one of the most successful collaborations in musical history, having worked with Nancy Ford for over sixty years. Their New York productions include “Now is the Time for All Good Men,” “The Last Sweet Days of Isaac” receiving the Obie, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle Awards, “Shelter” on Broadway, “Anne of Green Gables” for Theaterworks USA, “Eleanor,” “The American Girls Revue,” and their new show, “Still Getting My Act Together.” Ms. Cryer appeared as a performer on Broadway in the original productions of “Little Me” with Sid Caesar, “110 in the Shade,” and “1776.”Ms. Cryer was a Jonathan R. Reynolds playwright-in-residence at Denison College, an adjunct professor at Colorado College and presently teaches solo performance in New York City.
Mr. Drake's most well-known songs included “It Was a Very Good Year” recorded by Frank Sinatra, Robbie Williams, recently by Ray Charles and Willie Nelson, “I Believe (For Every Drop of Rain)” recorded by Barbra Streisand, LeAnn Rimes, and Frankie Laine, “Good Morning Heartache” recorded originally by Billie Holiday, then Diana Ross, Tony Bennett and Sheryl Crow, “Tico Tico," “A Room Without Windows,” “Perdido,” and “Al Di Là.” He also wrote the musicals: “What Makes Sammy Run?,” “Sophisticated Lady,” and “Lobster Alice.” Mr. Drake wrote or was the composer or produced hundreds of television shows and films including “Yves Montand on Broadway,” “To Mamie Eisenhower with Music,” “The Bachelor” receiving the Sylvania Award, “Ethel Merman Special,” “Radio Days,” “Fabulous Baker Boys,” “Sinatra,” “Sex and the City,” and “The Sopranos.” Mr. Drake received the ASCAP Award, and was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. The Ervin Drake Music Scholarship is presented annually by Townsend Harris High School and Five Towns College. Mr. Drake died in 2015. (The interview was conducted in 2001.)
His groundbreaking show on Broadway, “A Chorus Line,” received the Pulitzer Prize. On Broadway he also wrote the music for “They’re Playing Our Song,” “The Goodbye Girl” and “Sweet Smell of Success,” “Jean Seberg,” and “The Nutty Professor Musical.” He was the composer of more than forty motion picture scores including his Academy Award winning score and song for “The Way We Were,” his adaptation of Scott Joplin’s music for “The Sting,” receiving his third Academy Award. His prolific output of scores for films include original compositions and/or musical adaptations for “Sophie’s Choice,” “Ordinary People,” “The Swimmer,” “Three Men and a Baby,” “Ice Castles,” “Take the Money and Run,” “Bananas,” “Save the Tiger” and “The Informant!” and “Liberace – Behind The Candelabra” starring Michael Douglas and Matt Damon, directed by Steven Soderbergh. Mr. Hamlisch was Musical Director and arranger of Barbra Streisand’s 1994 concert tours and her television special, “Barbra Streisand: The Concert,” receiving two Emmy Awards. Mr. Hamlisch was the principal pops conductor for the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Pasadena Symphony and Pops, Seattle Symphony, San Diego Symphony, The Buffalo Philharmonic and The National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, D.C. As composer, Mr. Hamlisch received three Academy Awards, four Grammy Awards, four Emmy Awards, one Tony Award and three Golden Globe Awards. Mr. Hamlisch died in 2012. (The interview was conducted in 2006.)
One of this country’s most prolific lyricists, Mr. Harnick is best known for his collaborations with composer Jerry Bock for his musicals, “Fiddler on the Roof,” “The Body Beautiful,” “Fiorello!” receiving the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, “Tenderloin,” “She Loves Me,” “The Apple Tree,” “The Rothschilds.” Mr. Harnick contributed a song to the revue “New Faces of 1952,” his Broadway debut. Besides his work with Jerry Bock, Mr. Harnick has worked with Joe Raposo on the musical “A Wonderful Life” with Richard Rodgers on “Rex,” and with Arnold Black on “A Phantom Tollbooth.” He provided an English translation for Michel Legrand's “Umbrellas of Cherbourg,” the librettos for several operas with composer Jack Beeson: “Captain Jinks of the Horse Marines,” “Cyrano,” and “Dr. Heidegger's Experiment,” the librettos for two operas with Henry Mollicone: “Coyote Tales” and “Lady Bird,” and the book, lyrics and music for the musicals: “Dragons and Malpractice Makes Perfect.” His work for television and film ranges from songs for the HBO animated film, “The Tale of Peter Rabbit” with music by Stephen Lawrence, to lyrics for the opening number of the 1988 Academy Awards telecast. He wrote the theme songs for two films, both with music by Cy Coleman – “The Heartbreak Kid” and “Blame It on Rio.” Mr. Harnick has won three Tony Awards. His many other honors include: The Johnny Mercer Award presented by the Songwriters Hall of Fame, the Marc Blitzstein Memorial, honored at the Annual William Inge Theatre Festival, and Mr. Harnick and Jerry Bock were presented with the York Theatre Company's Oscar Hammerstein Award.
One of America's most successful musical theatre composers, his music has been recorded by Barbra Streisand, Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Bobby Darin, Harry Connick, Jr., Jay–Z, Louis Armstrong, Nina Simone, and Duke Ellington and his Orchestra. A three–time Tony Award winner, a two–time Emmy Award winner, his cast recordings have earned him two Grammy Awards. Mr. Strouse has written scores for over thirty stage musicals, fourteen for Broadway, including “Bye Bye Birdie,” with long–time collaborator Lee Adams, “Applause,” “Annie” with lyricist Martin Charnin and librettist Thomas Meehan, “Golden Boy” an adaptation of the Clifford Odets play, “It’s A Bird… It's A Plane… It's Superman,” and “Dance a Little Closer” with Alan Jay Lerner. His film scores include “Bonnie & Clyde,” “There Was a Crooked Man,” and “All Dogs Go to Heaven.” Mr. Strouse wrote both the music and lyrics for Off Broadway's “Mayor,” and with Martin Charnin created “Annie Warbucks.” His film scores include “Bonnie & Clyde,” “There Was a Crooked Man” with Henry Fonda and Kirk Douglas, “The Night They Raided Minsky’s," Sidney Lumet's “Just Tell Me What You Want,” and “All Dogs Go to Heaven.” His film and television musicals include “Bye Bye Birdie,” “Annie” directed by John Houston, starring Carol Burnett, Albert Finney, and Bernadette Peters, “Alice in Wonderland,” “Lyle, Lyle Crocodile,” “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible No Good, Very Bad Day,” “Annie–A Royal Adventure,” “Applause,” “It's a Bird… It's a Plane… It's Superman,” and “Bye Bye Birdie” with Jason Alexander, Vanessa Williams, and Tyne Daly. His song "Those Were the Days" launched over 200 episodes of All in the Family. Mr. Strouse also wrote the music, book and lyrics for “Nightingale,” an opera based on the Hans Christian Andersen story, performed in London with a cast that included Sarah Brightman. Mr. Strouse also wrote "Concerto America" to commemorate 9/11 and the spirit of New York City, receiving its world premiere from the Boston Pops Orchestra. His anthem, "On This Day," written for the White House Commission on Remembrance, was performed on Memorial Day, May 26, 2003, in front of the Iwo Jima Memorial in Arlington, Virginia. He has been inducted to the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Theatre Hall of Fame.
Ms. Tesori won the Tony Award for Best Original Score with Lisa Kron for the musical, “Fun Home” on Broadway. She also wrote the Tony Award nominated scores for “Twelfth Night” at Lincoln Center, “Thoroughly Modern Millie” with lyrics by Dick Scanlan, “Caroline, or Change” with lyrics by Tony Kushner, “Shrek The Musical” with lyrics by David Lindsay-Abaire. The production of “Caroline, or Change” at the National Theatre in London received the Olivier Award for Best New Musical. Her 1997 Off-Broadway musical, “Violet” with lyrics by Brian Crawley opened on Broadway in 2014 and garnered four Tony nominations, including Best Musical Revival. Ms. Tesori’s operas include “A Blizzard on Marblehead Neck” with a libretto by Tony Kushner performed at Glimmerglass, “The Lion, The Unicorn, and Me” with libretto by J. D. McClatchy, performed at Washington D.C.’s Kennedy Center. Her music for plays includes “Mother Courage” directed George C. Wolfe, with Meryl Streep and Kevin Kline, “A Free Man of Color” directed by George C. Wolfe at Lincoln Center Theater, and “Romeo and Juliet.” Ms. Tesori wrote songs for “The Emperor’s New Groove 2: Kronk’s New Groove,” “Wrestling with Angels,” a 2006 documentary about Tony Kushner, “Shrek the Third,” and three animated Disney DVDs: “Mulan II,” “Lilo" and “Stitch II,” “The Little Mermaid: Ariel’s Beginning.” Her film scores include “Nights in Rodanthe,” and “Every Day You're Not You.” She was cited by ASCAP as the first female composer to have two new musicals running concurrently on Broadway. Ms. Tesori is the founding artistic director of Encores! Off-Center at New York City Center, and a lecturer in music at Yale University. She is the proud parent of Siena Rafter, a senior at LaGuardia High School for the Arts.
MELVIN VAN PEEBLES
Composer, actor, director, screenwriter, and playwright. He wrote the musical book and score for “Ain’t Supposed to Die a Natural Death” on Broadway. As a director, his films include “Pickup Men for Herrick,” “La Permission” (Story of a Three Day Pass), “Sunlight,”“Vroom Vroom Vrooom,” “Watermelon Man,”“Confessions or Ode of an Ex-Dufas Mother,” “Sweet Sweetback’s Baadassss Song” (His son, Mario’s film, “Baadasssss!” tells the story behind his father’s film). His albums include “Brer Soul,” “As Serious as a Heart Attack,” “What the…You Mean I Can’t Sing?”, and “Ghetto Gothic.” As an actor, his work includes “O.C. and Stiggs,” “Sonny Spoon,” “Posse,” “Terminal Velocity,” “Posse” — based on his novel “Panther” – screenwriter, actor and producer, “The Shining,” and “Melvin van Peebles’ Classified X.” Mr. Van Peebles appeared in the “Philip Glass: Einstein in Concert” at Carnegie Hall.
Founder of the Ensemble for the Romantic Century in 2001, she has created many innovative and dramatic concerts, performing in most of the ensemble’s forty-plus original productions including “The Dreyfuss Affair” (now through May 7th at BAM), “Tchaikovsky: None but the Lonely Heart,” “Jules Verne: From the Earth to the Moon,” “Van Gogh’s Ear,” “Toscanini: Nel mio cuore troppo di assolut,” and “Anna Akhmatova: The Heart Is Not Made of Stone” “Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein,” She has performed as part of the Ensemble for the Romantic Century across America and around the world including at the Archivo Fano, and Sale Apollinee of the Teatro La Venice in Italy, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Shakespeare & Company, Festival de Musique de Chambre Montreal, French Institute-Alliance Francaise, and the City University of New York. Ms. Wolf teaches at the Curtis Institute of Music and Columbia University-Teachers College, and was a professional mentor at The Juilliard School.
Eugenio Barba Anne Bogart Joseph Chaikin Tisa Chang Ping Chong Jack Garfein Andre Gregory Sabra Jones Michael Kahn Woodie King, Jr. Robert LePage Emily Mann Dijana Milošević Diane Paulus Michael Pressman Harold Prince Nancy Rhodes Lloyd Richards Mark Rydell Andrei Serban Ellen Stewart Tadashi Suzuki Robert Wilson
Theater Director, Author, and Founder of Odon Theatre in 1964, and the International School of Theatre Anthropology, located in Holstebro, Denmark. Mr. Barba has directed over seventy-five productions with Odin Teatret and the Theatrum Mundi Ensemble, some of which have required up to two years of preparation including “Ornitofilene,” “Ferai,” “Min Fars Hus,” “Brecht’s Ashes,” “The Gospel According to Oxyrhincus,” “Talabot,” “Itsi Bitsi,” “Kaosmos,” “Mythos,” “Salt,” “Great Cities under the Moon,” “Andersen's Dream,” “Ur-Hamlet,” “The Marriage of Medea,”“The Chronic Lie,” and “Don Giovanni all’Inferno" in collaboration with Ensemble Midtvest. Since 1974, Mr. Barba and Odin Teatret have devised their own way of being present in a social context through the practice of theatre ‘barter, an exchange through performance with a community. His books include “Grotowski in search of a Lost Theatre,” “The Paper Canoe,” “Theatre: Solitude, Craft, Revolt,” “Land of Ashes and Diamonds: My Apprenticeship in Poland, followed by 26 letters from Jerzy Grotowski to Eugenio Barba,” and in collaboration with Nicola Savarese, “The Secret Art of the Performer” and “A Dictionary of Theatre Anthropology.” Mr. Barba is the recipient of the Danish Academy Award, Mexican Theatre Critics' Prize, Pirandello International Prize, and The International Association of Theatre Critics’ Thalia Prize.
Co-Artistic Director of SITI Company, which she founded with Japanese director Tadashi Suzuki in 1992. SITI’s works include “Chess Match No. 5,” “Lost in the Stars,” “Persians,” “Trojan Women,” “American Document,” “Antigone,” “Who Do You Think You Are,” “Radio Macbeth,” “Hotel Cassiopeia,” “La Dispute,” “bobrauschenbergamerica,” “Room,” “War of the Worlds,” “Cabin Pressure,” “The Radio Play,” “Alice’s Adventures,” “Culture of Desire,” “Bob,” “Small Lives/Big Dreams,” “The Medium,” Noel Coward’s “Hay Fever” and “Private Lives,” August Strindberg’s “Miss Julie,” and Charles Mee’s “Orestes.” Operas include “Norma,” “Carmen,” “I Capuleti e i Montecchi,” “Nicholas and Alexandra” at the Los Angeles Opera, “Marina: A Captive Spirit” at American Opera Projects, and “Lilith” and “Seven Deadly Sins” at New York City Opera. Ms. Bogart is the author of five books: “A Director Prepares,” “The Viewpoints Book,” “And Then, You Act,” “Conversations with Anne,” and “What’s the Story.”
Founder of the Open Theater, one of the most influential experimental theater groups that existed in the United States. In the early 1960’s, he performed in the Living Theater’s landmark productions including “Man is Man” and “The Connection,” directed by Julian Beck. Among the fourteen productions of the Open Theatre, Mr. Chaikin directed included “The Serpent” and “America Hurrah” by Jean-Claude van Itallie, “The Mutation Show” receiving a Drama Desk Award, “Nightwalk,” “Viet Rock,” and “Terminal” which toured to Iran’s Shiraz Arts Festival, and prisons in the U.S. and Canada. As an actor, his performances included as Hamm in “Endgame” with Peter Maloney, and “Woyzeck” at The Public Theatre in New York City. Mr. Chaikin with Sam Shepard wrote “Tongues and Savage/Love” which he starred in, “The War in Heaven,” and “When the World Was Green” for the 1996 Olympics. He performed in “Struck Dumb” written by Jean-Claude van Itallie and Mr. Chaikin. Mr. Chaikin’s productions as an actor/director included “Electra,” “The Dybbuk,” “The Bald Soprano,” “The Glass Menagerie,” “Medea,” “The Seagull,” and “Happy Days.”In 2000, he co-directed “Shut Eye” with Dan Rothenberg at Pig Iron Theatre Company. Mr. Chaikin received the Vernon Rice Award, six Obie Awards, including one for Lifetime Achievement. His book, "The Presence of the Actor" was published in 1972. He was the subject of the documentary film, The Presence of Joseph Chaikin. Mr. Chaikin died in 2003, and was inducted, posthumously, into the American Theatre Hall of Fame. (The interview was conducted in 2000).
Artistic Director of Pan Asian Repertory, Ms. Chang, originally from Chongqing, China, directed her first production in 1973, the Peking Opera’s The Return of the Phoenix, at La MaMa in New York City for Ellen Stewart’s Chinese Theatre Group. She also produced bi-lingual versions of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” and “Servant of Two Masters” in Mandarin and English at La MaMa. In 1977, Ms. Chang created the Pan Asian Repertory Theatre, and over its forty-year history, she has directed many acclaimed productions including “The Joy Luck Club,” “Rashomon,” “The Empress of China” with Tina Chen, and the world premiere of “Shanghai Lil’s." As an actress, she has appeared in several Broadway and Off-Broadway plays including “Lovely Ladies,” “Kind Gentleman,” “The King and I” with Yul Brynner, Stephen Sondheim’s “Pacific Overtures,” “Flower Drum Song,” and “The Basic Training of Pavlo Hummel” with Al Pacino. Her film and television work includes: “Ambush Bay,” “Greetings,” “Escape from Iran: The Canadian Caper,” “A Doctor’s Story,” and “Year of the Dragon.” Ms. Chang has received several awards, including a Theatre World Theatre Special Award, Organization for Chinese Americans Lifetime Achievement Award, League of Professional Theatre Women Lee Reynolds Award, the New York City Chinese American Cultural Pioneer Tribute and the Barnard Medal of Distinction.
Theater director, playwright, choreographer and video and installation artist, Mr. Chong is a leading contemporary theatre artist and a seminal figure in the Asian American Arts Movement. Since 1972, he has created over thirty-five works, including “Noserafu,” “Angels of Swedenborg,” “Blind Ness: The Irresistable Light of Encounter,” “The Undesirable Elements” series and the acclaimed “East-West” quartet, “Obon: Tales of Rain” and “Moonlight,” “Edda: Viking Tales of Lust,” “Revenge and Family,” “I Will Not Be Sad in this World,” “Sacred History, Cathay: Three Tales of China,” “Beyond Sacred: Voices of Muslim Identity,” and “Collidescope: Adventures in Pre- and Post-Racial America” with Talvin Wilks. They have been performed at major museums, festivals, and theatres throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. His puppet theatre work, “Kwaidan,” premiered at the Atlanta Center for Puppetry Arts, was presented at La Mama ETC, as part of the 1988 Henson Int’l Festival of Puppet Theatre, and toured in the U.S., London and Japan. Mr. Chong received two Obie awards, his second for sustained achievement. He has also received six NEA fellowships, a Playwrights USA Award, a Guggenheim fellowship, 2 Bessies, and the National Medal of Arts from President Obama.
Mr. Garfein made his Broadway debut as a director with “End as a Man” starring Ben Gazzara. He survived eleven concentration camps, and lost his entire family in the Holocaust. He received a scholarship to study with Erwin Piscator at the Dramatic Workshop at the New School for Social Research in New York City. While there, he performed in “The Burning Bush,” directed by Piscator. As a director, his productions on Broadway and Off-Broadway included “The Shadow of a Gunman,” “The Sin of Pat Muldoon,” “The Lesson” with Joseph Wiseman, (and one of the co-founders of New York City’s Theatre Row on 42nd Street, creating The Harold Clurman Theatre), “Endgame,” “The Beckett Plays,” “Anton Chekhov Sketchbook” with Joseph Buloff and “Rommel’s Garden.” Mr. Garfein produced Arthur Miller’s “The Price” and “The American Clock” on Broadway, and directed the French premiere of “Master Harold and the Boys” in Paris, the world premiere of Beckett’s “Night and Space” in Austria. His documentary, “The Journey Back” chronicles his return to Auschwitz. His classic films include “The Strange One” and “Something Wild” starring Carroll Baker. On television he directed “The Marriage” with Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn. He created The Harold Clurman Theatre on Theatre Row in New York City. In 1966, in collaboration with Paul Newman, he created The Actors Studio in Los Angeles. He co-produced Ronald Rand in his play “LET IT BE ART! Harold Clurman’s Life of Passion” at the Filmothèque du Quartier Latin in Paris. Mr. Garfein created the book, “Life and Acting: Techniques for the Actor,” and currently teaches in New York City and Paris at Le Studio Jack Garfein. Mr. Garfein was awarded Masque d'Or, voted best acting teacher in France.
World-renowned theater director, Mr. Gregory was the Artistic Director of The Manhattan Project, a New York theater collective that performed in New York and all over the world. He is the author of the play, “Bonesongs,” and Mr. Gregory has performed it at the 92nd Street Y and at Redcat Theatre in Los Angeles. His production of the Obie-winning “Alice in Wonderland” ran for five years in New York City, toured Europe, the Middle East and South America. In 1975, he directed “Our Late Night” by Wallace Shawn, and later starred in and co-authored the popular film, “My Dinner with Andre,” with Wallace Shawn. Mr. Gregory’s directing include “Endgame,” “Our Late Night,” “The Master Builder,” “Grasses of a Thousand Colors” performed at London’s Royal Court Theatre and New York’s Public Theater, and Mr. Shawn’s “The Designated Mourner” also presented at the Public Theater. A long-running workshop of “Uncle Vanya,” adapted by David Mamet, rehearsed for over four years with Mr. Shawn and Julianne Moore, later became “Vanya on 42nd Street,” a film directed by Louis Malle and Mr. Gregory. Mr. Gregory’s film work as an actor includes Peter Weir’s “The Mosquito Coast” and Martin Scorsese’s “Last Temptation of Christ.” In 2014, Mr. Shawn and Mr. Gregory’s production of “A Master Builder” was made into a film by Jonathan Demme. A documentary about his life and work, “Before and After Dinner,” directed by Cindy Kleine was released in 2013. Side by side with his work as a director, he began to draw and paint over a decade ago. Mr. Gregory has had two shows of his work at the Jason McCoy Gallery in New York City. Mr. Gregory is directing a new production of “Hedda Gabler,” and with Todd London, completing a book on his life and work.
Artistic Producing Artistic Director of The Mirror Repertory Company, she co-founded the Mirror in 1983, with Geraldine Page, Eva Le Gallienne, John Strasberg, located in New York City and Greensboro, Vermont. Over thirty years their productions included Eve Le Gallienne's “Alice in Wonderland” on Broadway, which received a Tony Award nomination, followed by sixteen other plays in alternating repertory in New York City. Ms. Jones’ directing at the Greensboro Arts Alliance & Residency in Vermont includes “Hamlet,” “Our Town,” “The Seagull,” “The Three Sisters,” “You Can’t Take it with You,” “The Fantasticks,” “Peter Pan,” “The Sound of Music,” “The Music Man,” and “The Miracle Worker with Ronald Rand as The Stage Manager.” As an actress her appearances include: “Butterflies are Free” on Broadway, “Six Degrees of Separation” at Lincoln Center, “Nightflowers,” “The Balcony,” and “The Rehearsal.” With the Mirror, she appeared opposite Geraldine Page, Michael Moriarity, and F. Murray Abraham in several plays including “Rain,” “Paradise Lost,” “Clarence,” “Hasty Heart,” “The Inheritors,” “Joan of Lorraine,” “Children of the Sun,” and “The Seagull” directed by Robert Lewis, in fifteen other plays regionally, in “La Fille du Regiment” and “Les Troyens" at The Metropolitan Opera. As the daughter-in-law of Lee Strasberg, she taught at the Lee Strasberg Institute, Pace University and at Manhattanville College.
Artistic Director of The Shakespeare Theatre Company in Washington, D.C. for over thirty years; Mr. Kahn was the Richard Rodgers Director of the Drama Division of the Juilliard School from 1992 to 2006. A world acclaimed director, his Broadway, Off-Broadway and regional productions include all of Shakespeare’s plays, “Showboat” receiving a Tony nomination, “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” “Hedda Gabler” at the Roundabout Theatre, “Mother Courage and Her Children,” “The Government Inspector,” “Cyrano,” “Peer Gynt,” “Camino Real,” “Sweet Bird of Youth,” “Old Times at The Goodman Theatre, “A Touch of the Poet” at Arena Stage,” “The Duchess of Malfi” at The Guthrie, a new adaptation of “Lorenzaccio” — world premiere, and David Ives’ adaptations of French comedies. His other notable productions include the original productions of van Itallie’s “War” and “America Hurrah,” Kennedy’s “Funnyhouse of a Negro,” “The Rimers of Eldritch,” “Death of Bessie Smith,” “Measure for Measure” for New York Shakespeare Festival in Central Park, and he directed over twenty plays as the Artistic Director of the American Shakespeare Festival (Stratford, Ct.) including: “Merchant of Venice” with Morris Carnovsky, “Three Sisters” with Marian Seldes and Kate Reid, Jane Alexander and Sada Thompson in “Mourning Becomes Electra,” and “Othello” with Moses Gunn. Mr. Kahn directed Bizet’s ‘Carmen” at Washington Opera, Barber’s opera, “Vanessa” at the Kennedy Center, Houston Grand Opera and City Center Opera, and Adamo’s “Lysistrata” at Houston Grand Opera and NYC Opera, among others. Producing Director of McCarter Theatre Center (1974-1979), Artistic Director of The Acting Company (1978-1988), and founder of The Chautauqua Theater Company and the Institute’s acting training program. He directed “The Oedipus Plays” at The Athens Festival in Greece. Mr. Kahn has received Drama Desk Awards, a Joseph Jefferson Award, seven Helen Hayes Awards, was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame and honored by Queen Elizabeth II as an Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.
WOODIE KING, JR.
Founder of the New Federal Theatre in 1970, producing over two hundred theatre productions, five thousand performances, introducing playwrights including J.E. Franklin, Ron Milner, Ed Bullins, Amiri Baraka, Ntozake Shange, David Henry Hwang, Genny Lim, and Laurence Holder, with casts including Morgan Freeman, Denzel Washington, Debbie Allen, Phylicia Rashad, Samuel L. Jackson, Laurence Fishburne, Garrett Morris, Robert Downey, Jr., and Leslie Uggams. His directing includes “Appear and Show Cause” receiving an Audelco Award, on Broadway - “Checkmates” receiving an NAACP Image Award, ‘James Baldwin: A Soul on Fire,” “A Raisin in the Sun” at Atlanta’s Alliance Theatre, and “Joe Turner’s Come and Gone’ at Brooklyn College. A leading authority on black theater, Mr. King’s book include “Black Theatre: Present Condition,” “Voices of Color,” and “The Impact of Race,” Mr. King founded National Black Theatre Touring Circuit, presenting “Boogie Woogie Landscapes,” among other plays. Mr. King received an Obie Award for Sustained Achievement.
One of Canada's most honored theatre artists, he is the founder of Ex Machina, a multi-disciplinary company which tours internationally. Among the productions he has created at La Caserne, a multi-disciplinary center in Quebec City have included “The Seven Streams of the River Ota,” “Elsinore,” “Geometry of Miracles,” “The Far Side of the Moon,” “Lipsynch,” “Playing Cards,” “The Image Mill” celebrating the 400th anniversary of Quebec City, “Eonnagata,” “The Blue Dragon,” “The Nightingale and Other Short Fables,” “887,” and “Quills.” When he was with Théâtre Repère during the 1980’s, he created “Circulations,” “The Dragons' Trilogy,” “Vinci,” “Polygraphe,” and “Tectonic Plates,” and toured around the world. He was the artistic director of the National Arts Centre’s Théâtre in Ottawa from 1989 to 1993, and staged “Needles and Opium,” “Coriolanus,” “Macbeth,” “The Tempest,” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” Mr. Lepage directed Strindberg’s “A Dream Play” at Stockholm’s Royal Dramatic Theatre. As a director, his films include “Le Confessional,” “Le Polygraphe,” “No, Possible Worlds” and “Triptych,” an adaptation of his play, “Lipsynch.” As an actor, he has appeared in “Jesus de Montreal,” “Stardom” and Martin Villeneuve’s “Mars et Avril.” He was the director for Peter Gabriel’s Secret World tour and Growing Up tour. Mr. LePage has directed several operas including “Bluebeard’s Castle” and “Erwartung" for the Canadian Opera Company, “The Damnation of Faust” in Japan, Paris, and at New York’s Metropolitan Opera, Richard Wagner’s “Der Ring des Nibelungen,” Stravinsky’s “The Rake’s Progress” in Brussels, Lorin Maazel’s “1984” at the Royal Opera House, “The Tempest,” and “L’Amour de Loin.” Mr. Lepage created the Cirque du Soleil show, “Ka,” in Las Vegas, and their touring show, Totem. Among his many awards include the Legion d’Honneur, SORIQ Award, Medal of the Officers of the Ordre national du Quebec, Denise Pelletier Prize, Stanislavsky Award, Governor General’s Performing Arts Award, the Compaqnon des Arts et les lettres du Quebec, and the Glenn Gould Prize.
One of this country’s most gifted writer/directors, Ms. Mann is the Artistic Director of McCarter Theatre. On Broadway, she directed “A Streetcar Named Desire” with Nicole Ari Parker and Blair Underwood. Ms. Mann wrote and directed “Having Our Say” receiving three Tony Award nominations and the Hull-Warriner Award, premiering at the McCarter, on Broadway, a national tour and in Johannesburg. Ms. Mann also wrote the teleplay for “Having Our Say” receiving the Peabody Award, Christopher Award, and a Writers Guild of America nomination. Under Ms. Mann’s leadership, McCarter Theatre commissioned, developed and premiered Christopher Durang’s Tony-award winning play, “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike,” and the McCarter Theatre received the Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theater. She has directed the world premiere of Nilo Cruz’s Pulitzer Prize-winning and Tony Award nominated “Anna in the Tropics” at The McCarter and on Broadway, and his new play, “Bathing in Moonlight,” Edward Albee’s “All Over” with Rosemary Harris at the Roundabout Theatre receiving an Obie Award, Romeo and Juliet, “The Tempest” with Blair Brown, and Antony and Cleopatra. Ms. Mann also directed The Cherry Orchard with Jane Alexander and Avery Brooks, “Miss Julie” with Kim Cattraland Donna Murphy, “Uncle Vanya,” “The House of Bernarda Alba,” and “Baby Doll” with Dylan McDermott, all of which she adapted, “A Doll’s House” with Cynthia Nixon, directed and co-authored Ntozake Shange, “Betsey Brown,” the world premiere of Edward Albee’s “Me, Myself and I” with Tyne Daly and Brian Murray, “The Glass Menagerie” with Shirley Knight and Dylan McDermott, “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” with Pat Hingle and JoBeth Williams, “The Three Sisters” with Frances McDormand, Linda Hunt, and Mary Stuart Masterson. Ms. Mann directed the world premieres of “Twilight: Los Angeles,1992,” “Miss Witherspoon,” “The How and the Why” with Mercedes Ruehl, “Phaedra Backwards,” “Five Mile Lake,” and Danai Gurira’s “The Convert,” which received six Ovation Awards. She wrote and directed “Meshugah” with Elizabeth Marvel, “Execution of Justice,” receiving a Drama Desk Nomination, “Greensboro: A Requiem,” “Still Life” receiving six Obie Awards, and “Annulla, An Autobiography.” Ms. Mann received The Helen Merrill Distinguished Playwriting Award and the Margo Jones Award given to a "Citizen of the Theater who has demonstrated a lifetime commitment to the encouragement of the living theatre everywhere.”
Theatre director, Co-founder and Artistic Director of DAH Theatre in Belgrade, Serbia, the first theatre laboratory in her country. Co-founder of Natsha Project (an international theatre network) and ANET ( Association of Independent Theatre Groups in Belgrade), Ms. Milošević is the Director of the International School for Actors and Directors of DAH Theatre. She has worked on issues of violence against women with the activist group ‘Women in Black, ‘performing stories of women from Kosovo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia and Croatia - and has taught across America at colleges and universities.
Mr. Pressman was the co-executive producer of the award-winning ‘Blue Bloods” starring Tom Selleck and Len Cariou, and the executive producer/director of “Picket Fences,” receiving two Emmy awards. His directing on television includes “Damages,” “In Treatment,” “Justified,” “Law & Order,” “The Practice,” “Boston Legal,” “The Closer,” “Weeds,” “Chicago Hope” receiving a Directors Guild Award, “Saint Maybe” starring Blythe Danner, Ed Hermann, and Mary Louise Parker, “To Heal a Nation” with Eric Roberts, and “A Season for Miracles.” Mr. Pressman’s film directing includes “The Bad News in Breaking Training,” “Some Kind of Hero” starring Richard Pryor, “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze,” and “To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday” starring Peter Gallagher and Clare Danes. A noted stage director, his productions include on Broadway “Come Back, Little Sheba” with S. Epatha Merkerson, Kevin Anderson and Zoe Kazan, the West coast premiere of “To Gillian on her 37th Birthday,” “The World of Sholom Aleichem,” the world premiere of “Days and Night Within,” “Love Letters” with Kathy Baker and Tom Skerritt, and “Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune.” His film, “Frankie and Johnny are Married” about that experience, received the Ashland Film Festival’s Best Acting Ensemble Award, and Ft. Lauderdale Film Festival’s Renaissance Award. A graduate of the Film School at California Institute of the Arts, where he was also a Board of Trustee. Mr. Pressman has taught at Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Mellon.
Recognized as one of the most creative and innovative figures in theatre, Mr. Prince’s shows on Broadway have included the original productions of “The Pajama Game,” “West Side Story,” “Fiddler on the Roof,” “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum,” “Cabaret,” “Company,” “Follies,” “Candide,” “Pacific Overtures,” “A Little Night Music,” “Sweeney Todd,” “Evita,” “Bounce,” “The Phantom of the Opera,” “Parade,” “The Petrified Prince,” “Whistle Down the Wind,” “Prince of Broadway,” and “LoveMusik.” Among the plays he directed include “The Great God Brown,” “3hree,” “The Flight of the Lawnchair Man,” “Hollywood Arms,” “The Visit,” “End of the World,” “Play Memory,” and his own play, “Grandchild of Kings.” His production of “Don Giovanni” is in the repertory of the New York City Opera. Mr. Prince’s opera productions include “Ashmedai,” “Willie Stark,” “Madame Butterfly,” a revival of “Candide,” “Turandot" at the Vienna State Opera, and have appeared at Chicago Lyric, the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, San Francisco Opera, and Buenos Aires’ Theatre Colon, among many others. A recipient of a National Medal of Arts, he has received twenty-one Tony Awards, more than any other individual, including eight for directing, eight for producing the year's Best Musical, two as Best Producer of a Musical, and three special awards including a Tony Award for lifetime achievement, and was a 1994 Kennedy Center Honoree. His memoir, “Contradictions: Notes on Twenty-Six Years in the Theatre” was published in 1974.
Artistic Director of Encompass New Opera Theatre. A champion of American opera, she staged the world premiere of Kirke Mechem’s “Tartuffe” for San Francisco Opera, Virgil Thomson’s “Lord Byron” at Alice Tully Hall in honor of the composer’s 89th Birthday, new operas for the Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra and Pittsburgh Opera Theatre. Internationally, she directed “Death in Venice” (Stockholm), “Carmen” (Oslo), and “Happy End” (Finland), and two American musicals for the Turkish State Theatre in Ankara and Istanbul. She staged “West Side Story” and “Kiss Me Kate” at the Albanian National Opera in the capital city of Tirana. She directed “Eccentrics, Outcasts and Visionaries: A Century of American Opera” for the Holland Festival (Amsterdam). At Encompass she has staged over 55 operas, including Virgil Thomson’s “The Mother of Us All,” Blitzstein’s “Regina,” Britten’s “Phaedra,” and Antheil’s “Transatlantic.” Ms. Rhodes co-conceived and directed “Only Heaven” with composer Ricky Ian Gordon, featuring poetry by Langston Hughes. She is the librettist of “The Theory of Everything,” a new opera inspired by physics’ superstring theory of multiple dimensions and alternate universes. Opera America honored Encompass and founding Artistic Director Nancy Rhodes for “25 Years of Dynamic Leadership.”
In 1958, Mr. Richards became the first Black director of a Broadway play with his production of Lorraine Hansberry’s “A Raisin in the Sun” starring Sidney Poitier, Ruby Dee, Claudia McNeil and Diana Sands. He also introduced August Wilson to Broadway, directing “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.” Mr. Richards directed and collaborated on five other plays by Mr. Wilson – “Fences,” “Joe Turner's Come and Gone,” “Two Trains Running,” “Seven Guitars,” and “The Piano Lesson,” which he directed on CBS which received eight Emmy nominations. Mr. Richards received Tony nominations for Best Director for three of his six collaborations with August Wilson, and won the Tony Award for Fences. He also directed “The Yearling,” “The Moon Besieged,” “The Long Dream, the musical,” “I Had a Ball, and a 1977 production of “Paul Robeson” with James Earl Jones. He produced seven of Athol Fugard’s plays. Mr. Richards taught acting under Paul Mann at the Actor's Workshop in New York, among his students was Sidney Poitier. He was Head of the actor training program at New York University’s School of the Arts, Professor of Theatre and Cinema at Hunter College, Dean of the Yale School of Drama, Artistic Director of the Yale Repertory Theatre from 1979 to 1991. Between1968 until 1999, he was Artistic Director of the National Playwrights Conference at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center. He helped develop the work of Wendy Wasserstein, John Guare, Charles Fuller, Christopher Durang, Lee Blessing and David Henry Hwang. Mr. Richards’ television work included segments of “Roots: The Next Generation,” “Bill Moyers’ Journal” and “Robeson.” He received the Audelco Pioneer Award, Actors’ Equity‘s Paul Robeson Award, and the National Medal of Arts. He was inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame. Mr. Richards died in 2006. (The interview was conducted in 2001.)
An Academy Award-nominated director, an accomplished jazz pianist, throughout his career, Mr. Rydell’s films have received twenty-six Oscar nominations. His films include: “The Fox” receiving the Golden Globe Award for Best English Language Foreign Film, “The Rievers,” “Jeremiah Johnson” – producer, “Scarecrow” – Producer, receiving the Palme D’Or, “The Cowboys” with John Wayne, “Cinderella Liberty,” “Harry and Walter Go to New York,” “The Rose” with Bette Midler, “On Golden Pond” with Henry Fonda and Katharine Hepburn, “The River” with Sissy Spacek, “For the Boys,” “Even Money,” “Crime of the Century,” TNT’s “James Dean,” receiving the Directors Guild Award, directing himself in the role of studio mogul, Jack Warner, in the film opposite James Franco. As an actor, Mr. Rydell made his Broadway debut in “Seagulls over Sorrento” with Rod Steiger. He appeared opposite John Cassavetes and Sal Mineo in “Crime in the Streets,” in “The Long Goodbye” and Woody Allen’s “Hollywood Ending.” His directing career on television includes “Ben Casey,” the first episode of “I Spy” starring Bill Cosby and Robert Culp, more than fifty episodes of dramatic television, including an award-winning episode of “Gunsmoke.” Mr. Rydell played the lead in “Moving Right Along,” a three-part set of short comedies written by Elaine May and Jan Mirochek, at San Francisco’s Magic Theatre.
A major name in twentieth-century Theater, he is renowned for his innovative and iconoclastic interpretations and stagings. At La MaMa, E.T.C., he directed “Fragments of a Greek Trilogy,” receiving an Obie Award and international awards, performed at more than twenty festivals. He worked with Peter Brook at Brook’s International Theatre Institute in both Paris and Persepolis. He directed “Agamemnon” and “The Cherry Orchard,” adapted by Jean-Claude van Itallie, at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, receiving a Tony Award for Best Revival, with Irene Worth, Raul Julia, and Meryl Streep. Mr. Serban was the General Director of the Romanian National Theatre, and has also directed at Yale Repertory, the Guthrie, Circle in the Square, Delacorte, A.C.T., the American Repertory Theatre in Cambridge, the Royal National Theatre in London, Schauspielhaus Bochum, and the Comedie Francaise in Paris, A.C.T., Metropolitan Opera, New York City, Seattle and Los Angeles Operas, at the Paris, Geneva, Vienna, and Bologna Opera Houses, Welsh National Opera, Covent Garden, Theatre de la Ville, Comedie Francaise, Helsinki’s Lilla Teatern, and with the Shiki Theatre Company in Tokyo. Mr. Serban’s directing includes Sarah Kane’s “Cleansed” in Romania, “Lucia di Lammermoor” at the Paris’ Opera Bastille, “Hamlet” starring Liev Schreiber at The Public Theatre in New York City, a modern Kabuki at the National Theatre of Korea in Seoul, “Arms and the Man” at Lev Dodin's Maly Theatre, “Carousel” at Bulandra in Bucharest, and “Angels In America” at Budapest’s National Theater. For more than two decades, Mr. Serban has been associated with Cambridge’s American Repertory Theatre, where he has directed “Lysistrata,” “Merchant of Venice,’ among several others. Since 1992, he has been Professor of Theater at the Columbia University, and has also taught at Yale University, Harvard University, Sarah Lawrence College, Paris Conservatoire d'Art Dramatique and A.R.T.’s Institute for Advanced Theater Training. In 2006, he published his autobiography. Mr. Șerban has received the Elliot Norton Award for Sustained Excellence, SSDC’s George Abbott Award, Romanian National Foundation for Arts and Sciences, and the Romanian Academy’s Prize for Excellence in Romanian Culture.
Founder of La MaMa, E.T.C. (Experimental Theatre Club) in New York City in 1961, Ms. Stewart created a theater with Paul Foster and others, becoming one of the most successful Off-Off Broadway theatrical companies. She brought to the forefront new generations of American Theatre playwrights including Sam Shepard, Lanford Wilson, Harvey Fierstein, Maria Irene Fornes, Adrienne Kennedy, Jean-Claude van Itallie; performing artists including Meredith Monk, Tan Dun, Joel Zwick, Mike Figgis, Jackie Curtis, Blue Man Group, John Kelly, David and Amy Sedaris; actors including Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Harvey Keitel, F. Murray Abraham, Olympia Dukakis, Bette Midler, Diane Lane and Nick Nolte; composers including Elizabeth Swados, Philip Glass and Stephen Schwartz; directors including Robert Wilson, Tom O’Horgan and The La MaMa Troupe, Richard Foreman, Joseph Chaikin, Lee Breuer, Andrei Serban, and Joseph Papp. La MaMa became a magnet for the most adventurous European and American companies, including Peter Brook’s Paris group, Eugenio Barba’s Odin Teatret, and the Belarus Free Theatre. She brought Jerzy Grotowski, Ryszard Cieslak, and Ludwig Flaszen to America, and produced site-specific performances all over the world including “Medea” created by Mr. Serban and Ms. Swados at the ruins in Baalbek, Lebanon in 1972. She turned a former monastery in Umbria, Italy into an international theater center. Ms. Stewart was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame, the first Off-Off Broadway producer to receive this honor. Among her many awards included the Praemiun Imperiale, the Stanislaw Ignacy Witkiewicz Award, and became an officer in the Ordre de Arts et des lettres of France.
One of the world’s foremost thinkers, directors and teachers of acting training, Mr. Suzuki is the founder and director of the Suzuki Company of Toga (SCOT), based in Toga Village. He is the organizer of Japan’s first international theatre festival (Toga Festival) and the creator of the Suzuki Method of Actor Training. Mr. Suzuki has also served as General Artistic Director of Shizuoka Performing Arts Center (1995-2007), as a member of the International Theatre Olympics Committee, as founding member of the BeSeTo Festival, and as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Japan Performing Arts Foundation (2000-2010). Mr. Suzuki’s works include “On the Dramatic Passions,” “The Trojan Women,” “Dionysus,” “King Lear,” “Cyrano de Bergerac,” “Madame de Sade,” and many others. He has directed several international collaborations including “The Tale of Lear” (co-produced and presented by four leading regional theaters in America), “King Lear’ (presented with the Moscow Art Theatre), “Oedipus Rex” (co-produced by Cultural Olympiad and Dusseldorf Schauspiel Haus), and “Electra” (produced by Ansan Arts Center/Arco Arts Theatre in Korea and the Taganka Theatre in Russia.) In 2001, Tadashi Suzuki & SCOT performed “Electra,” “Oedipus Rex” and “Dionysus” for their North American tour. Mr. Suzuki has had his writings published in English in “The Way of Acting” (TCG 1986) and “Culture is the Body” (TCG 2015), and has taught in schools and theaters around the world, including The Juilliard School in New York City and the Moscow Art Theatre. In Toga, Mr. Suzuki has established one of the largest international theater centers in the world.
Theatre visionary, internationally acclaimed director, designer and artist. He founded the New York‐based performance collective “The Byrd Hoff‐man School of Byrds” in the 1960’s, and developed his first signature works, including “Deafman Glance” and “A Letter for Queen Victoria.” With Philip Glass he wrote the seminal opera, “Einstein on the Beach.” Wilson’s artistic collaborators include many writers and musicians such as Heiner Müller, Tom Waits, Susan Sontag, Laurie Anderson, William Burroughs, Lou Reed and essye Norman. He has directed, and/or performed in Beckett’s “Krapp’s Last Tape,” “Threepenny Opera,” “Pelléas et Melisande,” “Faust,” “Odyssey,” Jean de la Fontaine’s “Fables,” “Madama Butterfly” and “La Traviata.” Mr. Wilson’s productions include “The Black Rider: Casting of the Magic Bullets” at Los Angeles’ Ahmanson Theater, “Lohengrin” at the Metropolitan Opera, “Aida” at Festspielhaus Baden-Baden, and Der Ring des Nibelungen - Das Rheingold, Die Walküre, Siegfried, and “Götterdämmerung” at Theatre du Chatelet. Among the other theatre pieces and performances, he has created include “The Life and Times of Sigmund Freud,” “The Life and Times of Joseph Stalin,” “Ka Mountain and the Guardenia Terrace,” “Edison, Death, Destruction, and Detroit I, II and III,” “I was sitting on my patio this guy appeared I thought I was hallucinating,” and the “CIVIL warS” receiving a Pulitzer Prize nomination. Mr. Wilson has directed many plays including “Peer Gynt,” “Hamlet,” “King Lear,” “Medea,” “Hamletmaschine,” “Dreamplay,” “The Lady from the Sea,” and “Three Sisters.” His productions also include “The Magic Flute,” “Salome,” “Parsifal,” “Alice,” “Time Rocker,” “POEtry,” and “Woyzek.” His art has been shown in museums internationally, including the Guggenheim Museum, Berlin’s National Gallery, the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, and the Centre Pompidou. Mr. Wilson founded The Watermill Center, an international, multi-disciplinary center for studies in the arts and humanities on Long Island.
PATCH ADAMS DICK CAVETT VICTOR MASAYESVA, JR. HENRY MUTOO CHARLIE SOAP DR. BARBARA ANN TEER
An American physician, author, comedian, social activist and clown, Dr. Adams, M.D. is the founder and director of Gesundheit Institute, a free health facility in operation since 1971. His distinctiveness and universal appeal led to the films, “Patch Adams,” starring Robin Williams and Philip Seymour Hoffman, and the Bollywood film, “Munna Bhai.” As a speaker, Dr. Adams travels around the world lecturing on his work and doing theater shows about various aspects of health, particularly dealing with self-care and preservation. Among his talks include: "The Gesundheit Institute: Medicine for Fun, not for Funds", "The Joy of Caring", "Humor and Health," "How to be Nutty," "Happiness/Joy," "Wellness," "Poetry and Medicine," "Self Esteem," and "Laughter Meditation." Mr. Adams received the Peace Abbey Courage of Conscience Award. He also teaches at Wavy Gravy’s circus camp, Camp Winnarainbow.
Founding Director of the Yale Repertory and American Repertory Theatres, he has been the theatre critic for The New Republic since 1959. Mr. Brustein is a Senior Research Fellow at Harvard University, and formerly a Distinguished Scholar in Residence at Boston’s Suffolk University. He was Dean of the Yale School of Drama from 1966 to 1979, and founded the Yale Repertory Theatre. He founded the American Repertory Theatre at Harvard University, and became a Professor of English. As the Artistic Director of Yale Rep from 1966 to 1979, and of ART from 1980 to 2002, Brustein supervised over two hundred productions, acting in eight shows and directing twelve plays. He retired in 2002 from the Artistic Directorship in 2002, and now serves on the faculty of the Institute. Mr. Brustein has written eleven adaptations for A.R.T., including “Ghosts,” “The Father,” “The Wild Duck,” “The Cherry Orchard,” “Six Characters in Search of an Author” receiving the Boston Theatre Award, and “The Changeling.” He conceived and adapted the musical, “Shlemial the First” based on Issac Bashevis Singer’s stories, presented across America. His klezmer musical, with composer Hankus Netsky, “The King of Second Avenue,” is an adaptation of Israel Zangwill's The King of the Schnorrers. Mr. Brustein's plays include “Demons,” “Nobody Dies on Friday,” “The Face Lift,” “Spring Forward, Fall Back,” and his Shakespeare Trilogy: “The English Channel,” “Mortal Terror,” “The Last Will,” and “Exposed.” Mr. Brustein is the author of sixteen books including “The Theatre of Revolt: An Approach to Modern Drama,” “Making Scenes: A Personal History of the Turbulent Years at Yale,” “Reimagining American Theatre,” “Dumbocracy in America,” “Letters to a Young Actor: A Universal Guide to Performance,” and “Word Plays.” Among the many awards Mr. Brustein has received include: George Jean Nathan Award for Dramatic Criticism twice, George Polk Award, Elliot Norton Award, and the National Medal of Arts. Mr. Brustein was elected to the Academy of Arts and Letters, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame.
Spanning five decades, Dick Cavett’s television career as a talk show host started at ABC in 1968, and he also appeared regularly on PBS, USA, and CNBC. Some of his classic TV interviews included Groucho Marx, Katharine Hepburn, Judy Garland, Marlon Brando, David Bowie, Janis Joplin and John Lennon. His television appearances include the PBS special Dick Cavett’s “Watergate,” Dick Cavett’s “Vietnam,” “The Odd Couple,” “Cheers,” “Kate & Allie,” “The Simpsons,” “What’s My Line?,” “To Tell the Truth,” and “Password.” Mr. Cavett has also appeared on Broadway as the narrator in the revival of “The Rocky Horror Show,” “Otherwise Engaged,” and Stephen Sondheim’s “Into the Woods.” He starred Off-Broadway in “Hellman v. McCarthy” in 2014 and in Los Angeles at Theatre 40. Clips from his TV shows (actual or enacted) have been used in the films “Annie Hall,” “Forrest Gump,” “Apollo 13,” and “Frequco-authored with Christopher Porterfield, “Talk Show: Confrontations, Pointed Commentary, and Off-Screen Secrets,” and “Brief Encounters: Conversations, Magic Moments, and Assorted Hijinks.” He has written an online opinion column for “The New York Times,” and has also written for “The New Yorker,” “TV Guide,” and “Vanity Fair.” Mr. Cavett has been nominated for eleven Emmy awards, including for the HBO special, Mel Brooks and Dick Cavett Together Again, and has won three Emmy Awards.
VICTOR MASAYESVA, JR.
A Hopi photographer and videomaker, Mr. Masayesva, Jr. began working with video in 1980, initially teaching students to document the oral histories of elders in Hotevilla. He created his film, “Itam Hakim, Hopiit" in 1984. He was selected for a Media Arts Fellowship in 1988, founded by the Rockefeller Foundation, by ITVS for creating his film, “Imagining Indians,” in 1991. Mr. Masayesva's work has been exhibited at several museums, including the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Modern Art, the and the Whitney Museum of Art. His book, “Husk of Time: The Photographs of Victor Masayesva” was published in 2006. He also co-edited “Hopi Photographers/Hopi Images.” In 1995, Mr. Masayesva received the American Film Institute's Maya Deren Award for Independent Film and Video Artists.
Artistic Director of the Cayman National Cultural Foundation for more than twenty years, Mr. Muttoo is one of Caribbean’s foremost cultural educators and theatre practitioners for over thirty-five years. An award winning actor, director, and designer whose work has achieved acclaim throughout the region and internationally. Mr. Muttoo is a former Senior Tutor at the Edna Manley College in Jamaica, has taught Design at the University of the West Indies and directed and designed for the University of South Florida. He has received numerous awards for his work including a Jamaica National Drama Award, two Cacique Awards from the Trinidad & Tobago Drama Association, Best Actor in Guyana, Cayman National Theatre Company’s Director of the Year, and Officer of the Order of Cayman. In 2013, He was honored by Queen Elizabeth with the MBE and in 2015 was made an Honorary Doctor of Arts by the University College of the Cayman Islands.
Founder and Artistic Director of Ballet Hispanico from 1979 to 2009, recognized around the world as the foremost dance interpreter of Hispanic culture in the United States. During her tenure, Ballet Hispanico performed for over two million people across three continents. The Company's national tours included engagements at such major venues as The John F. Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, the Music Center in Los Angeles, The Wortham Center in Houston, Boston's Celebrity Series, and Jacob's Pillow. Ms. Ramirez’ professional performing career included tours with the Federico Rey Dance Company, the Xavier Cugat Orchestra, solo engagements in Spain. Ms. Ramirez’ performing includes tours of the United States, Canada and Cuba with the Federico Rey Dance Company, in Spain, at Spoleto's Festival of “Two Worlds” with John Butler, in the Broadway productions of “Kismet” and “Lute Song,” and the television adaptation of “Man of La Mancha.” In 1967, she conceived and directed Operation High Hopes, a professional dance training program for inner-city children. Ramirez' "contribution as an educator is in many ways as important as her legacy as an artist and director. Today, the Ballet Hispanico School of Dance offers year-round professional training in ballet, Spanish dance and modern for over six hundred students. Leelee Sobieski and Jennifer Lopez also took their earliest dance classes at the School. Ms. Ramirez has received the National Medal of Arts, the Honor Award from Dance/USA, Dance Magazine Award, the Hispanic Heritage Award, Governor's Arts Award, Mayor's Award of Honor for Arts and Culture, and a GEMS Woman of the Year Award.
Mr. Soap, a full-blood bilingual Cherokee, has dedicated his life strengthening many Cherokee communities. He served as Director of the Cherokee Nation Community Development Department and for seven years as the Oklahoma Area Director of the Christian Children’s Fund. Mr. Soap is the Producer/Director of the film, “The Cherokee Word for Water.” Mr. Soap was Wilma Mankiller’s husband, community development partner for more than thirty years, and a leader in the Bell Waterline Project that inspired the film, working with the construction of eight community buildings and numerous other critical self-help initiatives. He served as the founding Director of the Boys and Girls Club of Tahlequah. Under Mr. Soap’s leadership, the Club operated a comprehensive summer enrichment program, working with Tahlequah Public Schools developed the first after-school programs in the school system. The collaboration between the Boys and Girls Club and the Tahlequah Public Schools has served as a national model. Mr. Soap is a fancy war dancer, and photographer, and has photographed his travels as a performer with Ray Charles around the world.
DR. BARBARA ANN TEER
A visionary, producer, writer, teacher and actress, Dr. Barbara Ann Teer founded Harlem’s National Black Theatre in 1968, the first revenue-generating black theater arts complex in America. As a dancer, she toured with the Alvin Ailey Dance Company and the Pearl Bailey Las Vegas Revue, on Broadway as dance captain in “Kwamina,” choreographed by Agnes de Mille, and in the film of “Purlie Victorious.” In 1963, she co-founded The Group Theatre Workshop with Robert Hooks, which later became the Negro Ensemble Company. Five years later, Dr. Teer founded the National Black Theatre at 125th Street and Fifth Avenue. As executive director, Dr. Teer directed a theater troupe that toured to Bermuda, Guyana, Haiti, South Africa and Trinidad, across America, appeared at Lincoln Center, and on the public television program, Soul. She lectured at Yale School of Drama, NYU, Brown University, and the Schomberg Center. Dr. Teer received over fifty awards including a Drama Desk Award, Vernon Rice Award as Best Actress, an Audelco Award, Harlem Community Builder’s Award, and a Women Who Dared Award. Dr. Teer died in 2008. (The interview was conducted in 2001.)
LEON BATES JULIE BUDD STEPHANIE CHASE KAREN DRUCKER CHAKA KHAN MEREDITH MONK VINICIO QUEZADA STEVE ROSS JIM SEALES TRAVIS WAMMACK EVE WOLF EUGENIA ZUKERMAN
One of America’s leading pianists, Leon Bates performed in Carnegie Hall with the New York Pops, Skitch Henderson conducting, and across the United States, in Canada, Italy, France, Austria, Ireland, England as well as Africa, appearing with the Vienna Symphony, The Sinfonica dell’ di Santa Cecilia in Rome, the Strasbourg Symphony in France, Czech National Symphony, Prague, and the Quebec Symphony. He has also toured South Africa, performing in Johannesburg with the National Symphony Orchestra and with the Natal Philharmonic. Mr. Bates has performed with many major U.S. symphonies including the Philadelphia Orchestra, Cleveland Symphony, New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Detroit Symphony and the Boston Symphony, at the Kennedy Center, Philadelphia’s Academy of Music and Kimmel Center, and with Lorin Maazel at the Orchestra of France. Other performances also include with the Bournemouth Symphony, the Duke Ellington Orchestra in Rome’s Olympic Stadium as a tribute to Christopher Columbus, with the Detroit Symphony, U.S. Air Force Band, Napa Valley Symphony, Brooklyn Philharmonic, Czech National Symphony, and participation in a Gala concert with the Philadelphia Orchestra. He has composed prominent pieces of music with the accompaniment of Janet Vogt for a method book, “Piano Discoveries.” Mr. Bates received a life time achievement award from the National Association of Negro Musicians, and the Raoul Wallenberg Humanitarian Award for his extensive work with children.
Considered one of the most exciting singers in the world, released her newest CD, “The New Classics.” Ms. Budd began her professional career at age twelve appearing on “The Merv Griffin Show.” After hearing her sing, she became the “Mini Girl with the Maxi Voice.” Subsequently she made more than one hundred appearances on “The Merv Griffin Show.” She also sang on “The Tonight Show,” “Entertainment Tonight,” and every major TV show. Ms. Budd has co- starred with such legendary performers as Frank Sinatra, Bill Cosby, Carol Burnett, and Liberace. Her concert performances have included: Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, The London Palladium, Tel Aviv’s Israel Performing Art’s Center, Las Vegas, and Atlantic City. She has also appeared with many symphony orchestras, including: Baltimore Symphony, National Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Austin Symphony, Alabama Symphony, Philadelphia Symphony, Boca Pops, Milwaukee Symphony, and Dallas Symphony. As an actress, she appeared on Broadway in Neil Simon’s “They’re Playing Our Song,” Off-Broadway at Circle Rep and Playwrights Horizons. Her film roles include roles in “The Devil & Max Devlin” with Bill Cosby and Elliot Gould, and in “Two Lovers” with Joaquin Phoenix and Gwyneth Paltrow. Ms. Budd has worked with Marvin Hamlisch and Carol Bayer Sager, and they penned the title song, “Roses & Rainbows” for her. Ms. Budd has taught master classes, bringing her method of “The Art of Vocal Technique” to students at universities across the country. She appears each season as one of the hosts of the Variety Children’s Charity telethon, and also supports MDA and The Saint Jude Children’s Hospital Organization. Her newest CD, “The New Classics,” was released. She is recording a new CD, and writing a book about her life.
An award-winning singer/songwriter, inspirational teacher, the creator of nineteen CD’s and the author of the book, “Let Go of the Shore,” Ms. Drucker travels throughout the United States and around the world each year impacting upon thousands of people with her heart-centered compositions and performing concerts, and speaking at conferences, retreats, churches, and organizing her own spiritual retreats. Her songs include: “I Am So Blessed,” I Lost the Right to Sing the Blues,” I’ve Got the Power,” “Lighten Up,” “We Are All Angels,” “My Religion Is Kindness.” Ms. Drucker also co-presents healing and transformative workshops with other authors. She swam the English Channel, becoming the ﬁrst American women relay team to make a successful crossing. She has received Grace Note Award, Spiritual Beacon Award, and the Marin County “Volunteer of the Year” award, and an Honorary Doctorate from the Centers for Spiritual Living.
Singer, songwriter, producer, visual artist, author, actor, philanthropist, entrepreneur, activist and mother, Chaka is an international music icon who has influenced multiple generations of artists and continues to do so. She recently celebrated her 40th anniversary in music and entertainment. A ten-time Grammy Award winner, with twenty-two Grammy nominations, Chaka has the rare ability to sing in eight music genres, including R&B, jazz, pop, rock, gospel, country, classical and dance music. Chaka has released twenty-two albums and earned ten #1 Billboard magazine charted songs, eight RIAA certified gold singles and eleven RIAA certified gold and platinum albums. Stevie Wonder, penned her first smash hit with Rufus, "Tell Me Something Good." Chaka made her Broadway debut as Sofia in Oprah Winfrey's musical, The Color Purple, in London's West End, starred in Mama, I Want to Sing, and in Las Vegas, starred in Signed, Sealed, Delivered, a musical based on the music of Stevie Wonder. Her honors include a street named after her in her hometown of Chicago – “Chaka Khan Way,” induction into the Apollo Legends Hall of Fame and the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame; a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and with the United Negro College Fund’s An Evening of Stars Tribute; a Soul Train Legend Award, a BET Lifetime Achievement Award, and a World Music Lifetime Achievement Award. Her autobiography, “Through the Fire,” was published in 2003, and is being adapted into a screenplay. Another book featuring the music and lyrics of many of her hit songs, “The Chaka Khan Songbook,” was released in 2015. A documentary series on her, “Being,” premiered on the Centric Channel. Chaka is currently at work on a series of mixed-media visual works with a planned gallery exhibition. In 1999, she established the Chaka Khan Foundation, which includes a variety of programs and initiatives that assist women and children at risk. Chaka currently resides in Los Angeles, and has two children, Indira Milini and Damien.
Composer, singer, director/choreographer and creator of new opera, music-theater works, films and installations, Ms. Monk’s work has been presented in venues including the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Lincoln Center, Houston Grand Opera, London’s Barbican Centre, and the Guggenheim and Whitney museums. In 1999 she performed a Vocal Offering for His Holiness the Dalai Lama as part of the World Festival of Sacred Music. In 1968, Ms. Monk founded The House, a company dedicated to an interdisciplinary approach to performance. Ms. Monk has made more than a dozen recordings, and her music has been featured in films by Jean-Luc Godard, David Byrne and the Coen Brothers. Her own award-winning films include “Ellis Island,” and “Book of Days.” As a pioneer in site-specific performance, her works include “Ascension Variations,” “Juice: a theatre cantata in 3 installments,” and “American Archeology #1: Roosevelt Island.” Ms. Monk’s awards include a MacArthur “Genius” Award, a Doris Duke Artists Award, Musical America‘s Composer of the Year. She was named an Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters by the Republic of France, and received the National Medal of Arts.
Guatemalan composer, piano soloist, music director, arranger and pianist. At five years of age, Mr. Quezada began his study of piano. His grandfather, father and uncles studied at the National Conservatory of Music. He graduated from the National Conservatory of Music at sixteen-years-old, and later directed the piano program and became its artistic director. After he graduated in 1977, he performed in Washington DC for a concert with violinist, Henry Raudales. Mr. Quezada received a scholarship to study music at the Alabama School of Fine Arts at Birmingham, Alabama. For ten years he served as musical director and arranger with DIDECA International with artists including Ricardo Arjona. Mr. Quezada’s discography includes fourteen albums, two CDs in the United States, and one in Chile. He was appointed Director of the Filarmonia del Ballet Guatemala with Felipe de Jesus Ortega. Mr. Quezada is a professor at the Escuela superior de Arte de la University de San Carlos de Guatemala.
A guitar legend, Mr. Seales is a member of the country music band, “Three Wheel Drive” with the renowned violin player, fiddler, vocalist Donny Carpenter, and vocalist, string instrumentalist Mitchell Curtis, performing regularly at FloBama in Florence, Alabama, across the state and throughout the United States. He was lead guitarist and vocalist of “Shenandoah,” an award-winning band founded in Muscle Shoals in 1984, with Marty Raybon, Ralph Ezell, Stan Thorn, Mike McGuire and Mr. Seales on lead guitar and back-up vocals. He retired from the band in 2014. “Shenandoah” released nine Studio albums, and was the most successful band to come out of the Muscle Shoals area, with two gold albums, twenty-six singles on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart, including nine albums: “Shenandoah,” “The Road Not Taken,” “Extra Mile,” “Long Time Comin’,” “Under the Kudzu,” “In the Vicinity of the Heart,” “Shenandoah Christmas,” “Shenandoah 2000,” and “Journeys.” Their number one hits included “The Church on Cumberland Road,” “Sunday in the South,” “Two Dozen Roses,” “Next to You, Next to Me,” and “If Bubba Can Dance, I Can Too.” They toured across America and on several international tours. Shenandoah received County Music Association award nominations, and received the Vocal Group of the Year Award in 1991 and 1992 and the Grammy Award in 1992 for Best Country Collaboration with Vocals for “Somewhere in the Vicinity of the Heart” with Alison Krauss.
Mr. Wammack is known as the “fastest guitar player in the South.” He began his professional music career when he wrote and recorded his first record at eleven years old. He made his mark on the music world at the age of sixteen with his 1963 number one hit, “Scratchy.” He was the first to develop and use the fuzz tone for an electric guitar. Mr. Wammack has played his guitar on hit records recorded at Fame Studio in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, that have sold over 60 million copies by artists including Aretha Franklin, Liza Minnelli, Wilson Pickett, Little Richard, Mac Davis, Clarence Carter, the Osmond Brothers, Bobbie Gentry, Candi Staton, Delbert McClinton, and Narvel Felts. His solo artist career was produced by Rick Hall with the release of his albums in 1971 and 1975. He traveled the world as Little Richard’s band leader from 1984 until 1995, performing on several shows on television including at President Bill Clinton’s inauguration party. Mr. Wammack’s CD’s include “Still Rockin,’” “Snake, Rattle & Roll in Muscle Shoals,” “Rock ‘n’ Roll Party,” “Memphis + Muscle Shoals = Travis Wammack,” “Almost Home,” “Country in My Soul,” “Rock ‘n’ Roll Days,” and "Rock ‘n’ RollDays Vol. II.” He is a member of the Memphis Music Hall of Fame’, and received the Professional Musician Award from the Alabama Music Hall of Fame. In 2005 he was inducted into The Southern Legends Entertainment and Performing ArtsHall of Fame. In 2011 Mr. Wammack was inducted into the Rockabilly Hall of Fame.
Founder of the Ensemble for the Romantic Century in 2001, Ms. Wolf has dedicated herself to an innovative form, the “theatrical concert,” which combines drama, music and multi-media. She has written twenty-five of the Ensemble’s forty-plus original productions and has performed in most of them, including “Tchaikovsky: None but the Lonely Heart,” “Peggy Guggenheim Stripped bare by her Bachelors,” “Frankenstein: Every Woman’s Nightmare,” “Van Gogh’s Ear,” “Toscanini: In my Heart Too Much of the Absolute,” and “Jekyll.” Ms. Wolf has performed with the Ensemble for the Romantic Century in America and around the world. The Ensemble’s two most recent productions – “Jules Verne: From the Earth to the Moon” in 2015, and “Anna Akhmatova: The Heart Is Not Made of Stone” in 2016, both written by Ms. Wolf – were presented at BAM in Brooklyn. She has appeared in Europe and the United States as a chamber musician and soloist. Ms. Wolf is on the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music and teaches piano at Columbia University-Teachers College, and has served as a professional mentor at The Juilliard School.
Recognized as one of the greatest flutists of our time, Ms. Zukerman has enjoyed musical collaborations with Emmanuel Ax, Yo-Yo Ma, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, the Shanghai String Quartet and fellow flutists Jean- Pierre Rampal and James Galway. She made her heralded debut at the Verbier Festival in Switzerland, partnering with violinist Dimitry Sitkovetsky, violist Nobuko Imai, cellist Frans Helmerson, and pianist Elena Bashkirova. Her numerous guest appearances have included engagements with the Tokyo Philharmonic, the Royal Philharmonic, the China Philharmonic, Montreal and VancouverSymphonies, National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico, Scottish Chamber Orchestras, and more than eighty orchestras nationwide, including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the National Symphony. She was Artistic Director of the Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival from 1998 through 2010. Ms. Zukerman is the Music Director of Clarion Concerts in Columbia County’s “Leaf Peeper Series,” and Music Director of Classics on Hudson in Hudson, New York. She was Arts Correspondent for CBS Sunday Morning receiving an Emmy nomination, continuing her role as an arts journalist by creating video blogs for many music conservatories and organizations, and Noted Endeavors, a new video blog, launched by Ms. Zukerman, Dr. Emily Ondracek-Peterson and Dr. Erik Peterson. Her recordings include over two dozen discs. She has written two novels, two non-fiction books, screenplays, articles and book reviews in “The New York Times,” “The Washington Post,” “Esquire,” and “Vogue.” Ms. Zukerman has received many awards including New York City’s Open University of Israel’s Lifetime Achievement Award, and Woman of Achievement Award from the National Hadassah Organization. She is a frequent guest teacher at conservatories nationwide.
EDWARD ALBEE, HAROLD BLOOM, ED BULLINS, NILO CRUZ, CHRISTOPHER DURANG, EVE ENSLER, MICHAEL FRAYN, LARRY GELBART, SPALDING GRAY, JOHN GUARE, TINA HOWE, ODILE GAKIRE KATESE, ARTHUR KOPIT, ARTHUR LAURENTS, BUDD SCHULBERG, PETER STONE, VIJAY TENDULKAR, ELISE THORON, JEAN-CLAUDE VAN ITALIE, SIR DEREK WALCOTT, ELIE WIESEL
One of the greatest playwrights of our time. His plays included “The Zoo Story” 1958), “The Death of Bessie Smith” (1959), “The Sandbox” (1959), “The American Dream” (1960), “Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” (1961-62, Tony Award), “Tiny Alice” (1964), “A Delicate Balance” (1966, Pulitzer Prize, 1996, Tony Award), “All Over” (1971), “Seascape” (1974, Pulitzer Prize), “Listening” (1975), “Counting The Ways” (1975), “The Lady from Dubuque” (1977-78), “The Man Who Had Three Arms” (1981), “Finding The Sun” (1982), “Marriage Play” (1986-87), “Three Tall Women” (1991, Pulitzer Prize), “Fragments” (1993), “The Play About the Baby” (1997), “The Goat or, Who Is Sylvia?” (2000, 2002 Tony Award), “Occupant” (2001), “At Home at The Zoo: (Act 1, Homelife. Act 2, The Zoo Story)” (2004), and “Me, Myself & I” (2008). He was a member of the Dramatists Guild Council, and President of The Edward F. Albee Foundation. Mr. Albee was awarded the Gold Medal in Drama from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters in 1980. In 1996 Mr. Albee received the Kennedy Center Honors and the National Medal of Arts. In 2005, he was awarded a special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement. (The interview was conducted in 1998).
Sterling Professor of the Humanities at Yale University and Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Professor of English at NYU’s Graduate School. He is the author of over twenty books and the editor of more than thirty anthologies of literary criticism, including “Hamlet: Poem Unlimited,” “Genius: A Mosaic of 100 Exemplary Creative Minds,” “Shelley’s Mythmaking, The Visionary Company,” “Blake’s Apocalypse,” “Yeats, A Map of Misreading,” “Kabbalah and Criticism,” “Agon: Toward a Theory of Revisionism,” “The Anxiety of Influence,” “The American Religion,” “The Western Canon,” “Omens of Millennium: The Gnosis of Angels, Dreams, and Resurrection,” “How to Read and Why,” “Where Shall Wisdom Be Found,” “Anatomy of Influence,” and “Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human” finalist for the 1998 National Book Award). A MacArthur Foundation Award recipient, he served as the Charles Eliot Norton Professor of Poetry at Harvard, and received the American Academy of Arts and Letters Gold Medal for Criticism.
Playwright-in-residence at the New Lafayette Theatre in the 1960’s and editor of “Black Theatre Magazine.” He was Distinguished Artist-in-Residence of Northeastern University, and Director of the New Federal Theatre Playwriting Workshop. One of the best known playwrights to come from the Black Arts Movement, among Mr. Bullins’ more than fifty plays include “The Taking of Miss Janie,” receiving the New York Drama Critics Circle Award, “The Fabulous Miss Marie,” “In the New England Winter” receiving the Black Arts Alliance Award, “Goin’ a Buffalo,” “Clara's Ole Man,” and “Dialect Determinism,” a collection known as Ed Bullins Plays which earned Mr. Bullins a Drama Desk Award in 1968. He was an in-residence playwright for the American Place Theatre, His work can be found in “Ed Bullins: Twelve Plays and Selected Writings” published by University of Michigan Press. Mr. Bullins received the 2012 Theatre Communications Group Visionary Leadership Award.
The first Latin playwright to receive the Pulitzer Prize for his play, “Anna in the Tropics,” starring Jimmy Smits, directed on Broadway by Emily Mann, he also received the Steinberg Award for Best New Play, and a Tony Award nomination. Mr. Cruz’ other plays include “Bathing in Moonlight,” Beauty of the Father,” “Lorca in a Green Dress,” “Dancing on Her Knees,” “Two Sisters and a Piano,” and “Hortensia and the Museum of Dreams.” Mr. Cruz wrote the book of the Frank Wildhorn/Jack Murphy musical, “Havana.” A frequent collaborator with Gabriela Lena Frank, he collaborated on a set of orchestral songs, "La Centinela y la Paloma" for Dawn Upshaw and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, and “Journey of the Shadow” for the San Francisco Chamber Orchestra. Mr. Cruz penned the libretto to Jimmy Lopez’s opera “Bel Canto.” Among many awards, he has received the Kesselring Prize, and the PEN/Laura Pels International Foundation for Theatre Award.
A Tony Award-winning playwright, activist, performer, Ms. Ensler wrote “The Vagina Monologues,” published in forty-eight languages, performed in over 140 countries, receiving the Obie award. Ms. Ensler is founder of V-Day, a twenty-year-old global activist movement to end violence against women and girls which has raised over a hundred million dollars to end violence, and One Billion Rising, a global mass action campaign in over two hundred countries. Her plays include: “Necessary Targets,” and “Emotional Creature.” Her books include “Insecure at Last: A Political Memoir,” “The New York Times” best-selling book, “I am an Emotional Creature,” and her critically acclaimed memoir, “In the Body of the World,” which she adapted and performed at the American Repertory Theatre (A.R.T.), directed by Diane Paulus. She writes for “The Guardian,” “Time.” and the “International Herald Tribune.”
Mr. Durang’s play on Broadway, “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike,” received the Tony Award, directed by Nicholas Martin, starring Sigourney Weaver, David Hyde Pierce, Kristine Nielsen, Billy Magnussen, Shalita Grant and Genevieve Angelson. Mr. Durang’s other plays include “The Nature And Purpose Of The Universe,” “A History of the American Film,” received a Tony nomination, “Sister Mary Ignatius Explains It All for You” receiving an Obie award, and has been performed by Nancy Marchand, Mary Louise Wilson, Kathleen Chalfont, Cloris Leachman, Peggy Cass, and Lynn Redgrave, among others, “Beyond Therapy’ starring Sigourney Weaver and Stephen Collins, directed by Jerry Zaks, on Broadway with Dianne Wiest and John Lithgow, “Baby with the Bathwater” at Playwrights Horizons, “The Marriage of Bette and Boo” with Joan Allen and Olympia Dukakis, receiving an Obie award, “Laughing Wild,” “Betty’s Summer Vacation,” receiving an Obie award, and “Sex and Longing” with Sigourney Weaver. As a performer, he’s appeared in his own plays, in film and television, and also performed in the Stephen Sondheim revue, “Putting It Together” at the Manhattan Theatre Club, with Julie Andrews. He and Sigourney Weaver performed in and co-wrote “Das Lusitania Songspiel", and he wrote a musical, “Adrift in Macao,” with music by Peter Melnick. His film and television work includes “Trying Times” starring Swoozie Kurtz, wrote for Carol Burnett’s special “Carol and Robin and Whoopi and Carl,” and “Sister Mary Ignatius” starring Diane Keaton. Mr. Durang received the Kenyon Festival Playwriting Prize, Sidney Kingsley Playwriting Award, and Lila Wallace Readers Digest Writers Award.
A Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright for his play, The Young Man from Atlanta, starring Rip Torn, Shirley Knight and Biff McGuire, Mr. Foote is also known for his screenplays, receiving two Academy Awards for To Kill a Mockingbird starring Gregory Peck, Tender Mercies starring Robert Duvall, The Trip to Bountiful starring Geraldine Page, for which she received the Academy Award, and Baby the Rain Must Fall starring Steve McQueen and Lee Remick. During the 1950’s, as one of the leading television writers writing for live television, the shows he wrote for included The Gabby Hayes Show, Studio One, Playhouse 90, receiving several Emmy nominations and awards, and also adapted The Trip to Bountiful into a play starring Lillian Gish and Eva Marie Saint on Broadway. Mr. Foote’s plays which premiered on Broadway, Off-Broadway and Off-Off Broadway included A Young Lady of Property, Valentine’s Day, The Widow Claire, Lily Dale, The Habitation of Dragons, Dividing the Estate, The Young Man From Atlanta, The Last of the Thorntons, The Carpetbagger’s Children, Dividing the Estate, and Harrison TX: Three Plays, His nine-play biographical series, The Orphans Home Cycle ran in repertory Off-Broadway during 2009–2010 at The Signature Theatre, receiving a Drama Desk Award. Mr. Foote adapted John Steinbeck’s “Of Mice and Men,” into a play directed by and starring Gary Sinise with John Malkovich, and William Faulkner's short story, "Tomorrow" into a film starring Robert Duvall. Mr. Foote provided the voice of Jefferson Davis in Ken Burns’ documentary, The Civil War. Foote's final work was the screenplay for the film, Main Street, starring Colin Firth, Patricia Clarkson and Orlando Bloom. Mr. Foote accepted the title as "Visiting Distinguished Dramatist" with the Baylor Department. His memoirs included “Farewell: A Memoir of a Texas Childhood,” and “Beginnings.” Mr. Foote was inducted into the American Hall of Fame. Mr. Foote died in 2009. (This interview was conducted in 2001.)
MARIA IRENE FORNES
A distinguished Cuban American playwright and director, Ms. Fornés was a leading figure of the Off-Off Broadway movement in the 1960’s. When she first arrived in America, Ms. Fornés worked in the Capezio shoe factory, learned English and became a translator. Interested in painting, she studied abstract art with Hans Hofmann in New York City. When she moved to Paris to continue painting, she was greatly influenced seeing a production of Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, although she had never read a play and didn’t understand French. Mr. Fornes’ notable works included Promenade receiving her first Obie award, with music by Al Carmines, And What of the Night? chosen as a Pulitzer Prize finalist, Fefu and Her Friends, Mud, Tango’s Palace, The Successful Life of 3, Lolita in the Garden, The Danube, A Matter of Faith, Oscar and Bertha, Enter the Night, Abingdon Square, Letters from Cuba. She adapted Lorca’s Blood Wedding and Life is a Dream, Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya. She received nine Obie awards, the New York State Governor's Arts Award, Robert Chesley Award, and the PEN/Laura Pels International Foundation for Theatre Award. She was committed to teaching, mentoring and influenced many young playwrights, including Tony Kushner, Paula Vogel, and Nilo Cruz. (This interview was conducted in 2000).
Most well known as the playwright of the Tony award-winning “Copenhagen,” “Noises Off,” and his critically-acclaimed novels, “Towards the End of the Morning,” “Headlong,” and “Spies” receiving the Whitbread Prize. Mr. Frayn’s plays also include “Democracy” performed at London’s National Theatre and on Broadway, “Afterlife,” “Alphabetical Order,” “Clouds,” “Make and Break,” “Donkeys’ Years,” “Benefactors,” and “Audience.” Among Frayn’s other novels include “The Tin Men” receiving the Somerset Maugham Award, “The Russian Interpreter” receiving the Hawthornden Prize, “A Very Private Life,” “The Trick of It,” “Stage Directions: Writing on Theatre,” and “My Father's Fortune: A Life.” He also wrote a book about philosophy, “Constructions,” and a book about his own philosophy, “The Human Touch.” He wrote columns for the newspapers, “The Guardian” and “The Observer.” Mr. Frayn’s film screenplays include “Clockwise” starring John Cleese, “First and Last” starring Tom Wilkinson, “Jamie on a Flying Visit,” and the television series “Making Faces,” starring Eleanor Bron. Considered by many to be Britain's finest translator of Anton Chekhov’s work, he has written translations of “The Seagull,” “Uncle Vanya,” “The Cherry Orchard,” “Three Sisters,” “Wild Honey,” and “The Sneeze.” He also translated Yuri Trifonov’s play, “Exchange,” Tolstoy’s “The Fruits of Enlightenment,” and Jean Anouilh’s “Number One.” Mr. Frayn has received many awards for his plays including the Laurence Oliver Award twice, several London Evening Standard Awards, an International Emmy Award, Golden PEN Award, St. Louis Literary Award.
Creator and producer of the TV hit show, “M*A*S*H” starring Alan Alda, “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” with Burt Shevelove receiving a Tony Award, starring Zero Mostel on Broadway, the films “Tootsie” with Murray Schisgal receiving an Oscar nomination, starring Dustin Hoffmann, and “Oh God” with George Burns and John Denver. As a television writer, he wrote for Sid Caesar, Bob Hope, Red Buttons, and Danny Kaye. His film screenplays include “Barbarians at the Gate” starring James Garner, “Weapons of Mass Distraction,” “And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself” starring Antonio Banderas, “Blame it on Rio” “Bedazzled,” “Rough Cut,” and “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.” Mr. Gelbart's shows on Broadway included the musical, “City of Angels” (Drama Desk Award, Edgar Award), “Mastergate,” and “Sly Fox” starring George C. Scott. Mr. Gelbart was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame and The Television Hall of Fame.
Known for the autobiographical monologues that he wrote and performed for the theater in the 1980’s and 1990’s. Mr. Gray’s monologues included “Swimming to Cambodia” (awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, National Book Award, adapted into a film in 1987 by Jonathan Demme), “Monster in a Box,” and “Gray’s Anatomy” (directed by Steven Soderbergh in a film. He began his theater career in New York in late 1960s. In 1970, he joined Richard Schechner’s experimental troupe, The Performance Group, and with actors including Willem Dafoe and Elizabeth Le Compte, helped to co-found the theater company, The Wooster Group in New York City. He was with The Wooster Group from 1975 to 1980. Mr. Gray appeared on Broadway in the role of the Stage Manager in “Our Town” for Lincoln Center Theater, and “The Best Man.” His books included “Sex and Death at the Age of 14,” “In Search of the Monkey Girl,” and “A Personal History of the American Theater.” In 2011, “The Journals of Spalding Gray” was published. The journals had been used for a play, “Spalding Gray: Stories Left to Tell” performed Off-Broadway in 2007. Steven Soderbergh made a documentary film about Mr. Gray's life, “And Everything is Going Fine,” in 2010.
His acclaimed plays on Broadway include “The House of Blue Leaves,” which received the New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award and an Obie Award 1971, subsequently receiving four Tony Awards for its 1986 revival at Lincoln Center Theater, and revived on Broadway in 2011 with Ben Stiller; “Six Degrees of Separation” starring Stockard Channing at Lincoln Center Theatre, “Landscape of the Body,” “Rich and Famous,” “Bosoms and Neglect” with Paul Rudd and Kate Reid, and “Four Baboons Adoring the Sun,” which received a Tony nomination. His other plays include “Muzeeka,” which received an Obie Award, “Lydie Breeze,” “Women and Water,” “Lake Hollywood,” “A Few Stout Individuals” at the Signature Theatre in New York City, “A Free Man of Color,” directed by George C. Wolfe, with Jeffrey Wright and Mos Def, chosen as a 2011 Pulitzer Prize drama finalist, Erased/Elzbieta, and “3 Kinds of Exile.” Mr. Guare wrote the libretto with Mel Shapiro for the musical, “Two Gentleman of Verona,” performed at the Public Theatre’s Shakespeare in the Park, receiving a Drama Desk Award. Mr Guare wrote the book for the musical, “Sweet Smell of Success” on Broadway starring John Lithgow and Brian d’Arcy James, receiving a Tony Award nomination. His film screenplays include Louis Malle’s “Atlantic City” starring Burt Lancaster and Susan Sarandon, which received an Academy Award nomination and “Six Degrees of Separation,” starring Stockard Channing and Will Smith. He is Co-Executive Editor of the “Lincoln Center Theatre Review,” which he founded in 1987. He co-produces the New Plays Reading Room Series at the Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts, and teaches in the Playwriting department at the Yale School of 1986. He received the New York State Governor’s Arts Award, received a season at the Signature Theatre, honored at the William Inge Festival, received the Dramatists Guild Lifetime Achievement Award, and was elected to the Theatre Hall of Fame.
A two-time finalist for the Pulitzer prize, Ms. Howe’s most produced plays include “Birth” and “After Birth,” “Museum,” “The Art of Dining,” “Painting Churches,” “Coastal Disturbances,” “Approaching Zanzibar,” and “Pride’s Crossing.” Her other plays include “One Show Off,” “East of the Sun and West of the Moon,” “Rembrandt’s Gift,’ “Cheri” and “Chasing Manet.” Ms. Howe’s works have premiered at New York City’s Public Theater, Kennedy Center, Second Stage, Old Globe Theatre, Lincoln Center Theater, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Atlantic Theater Company, Primary Stages and translated and produced abroad. Her works can be read in numerous anthologies including in “Coastal Disturbances: Four Plays by Tina Howe,” and “Birth and After Birth and Other Plays: A Marriage Cycle.” Ms. Howe’s other publications include her translations of Ionesco's “The Bald Soprano” and “The Lesson,” and “Shrinking Violets and Towering Tiger Liles: Seven Brief Plays about Women in Distress.” She is the subject of “Howe in an Hour,” edited by Judith Barlow. Among Ms. Howe’s many awards include an Obie award, a Tony Award nomination, an Outer Circle Critics Award, an Obie award, Sidney Kingsley Award, New York Drama Critics' Circle Award, William Inge Award, and PEN’s Master American Playwright award. Ms. Howe has taught at NYU, Columbia University, and UCLA, and is a Visiting Professor at Hunter College. She created the Rita and Burton Goldberg MFA in Playwriting. Ms. Howe is proud to have served on the council of the Dramatists Guild since 1990.
DAVID HENRY HWANG
Best known for his play, M Butterfly, which won a Tony Award, Drama Desk Award, John Gassner Award, and Outer Critics Circle Award, was also a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Mr. Hwang’s plays include "Golden Child" on Broadway, receiving three Tony nominations, and an Obie Award, "Yellow Face," premiere at Los Angeles’ Mark Taper Forum and New York's Public Theater, receiving the Obie Award, and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, “Chinglish" on Broadway, Chicago’s Goodman Theatre receiving a Jefferson Award, “FOB” receiving an Obie award, “The Dance & the Railroad” receiving a Drama Desk nomination, “Family Devotions” receiving a Drama Desk nomination, and “Kung Fu.” Mr. Hwang’s operas include four works with composer Philip Glass, including “1000 Airplanes on the Roof,” he wrote the libretto for “An American Soldier” with music by Huang Ruo, and “The Silver River” and “Dream of the Red Chamber” with scores by Bright Sheng. His operas have been performed at the Metropolitan Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Bavarian State Opera, Lincoln Center, Spoleto Festival USA, and around the world. Mr. Hwang's Broadway musicals include a new book for Rodgers & Hammerstein's “Flower Drum Song” receiving a Tony Award nomination, and Disney’s “Tarzan,” and he co-wrote “Aida,” with music and lyrics by Elton John and Tim Rice, which received four Tony Awards, and “The Forgotten Arm” with Aimee Mann and Paul Bryant. Mr. Hwang's film and television work includes "M. Butterfly" directed by David Cronenberg, “The Lost Empire,” co-authored “Possession” starring Gwyneth Paltrow, and “Chinglish" directed by Justin Lin. Mr. Hwang is the writer-producer for “The Affair,” and “Shanghai.” Mr. Hwang received the William Inge Award, Asia Society Cultural Achievement Award, the PEN/Laura Pels Award for a Master American Dramatist, and Steinberg Award. He is a Resident Playwright at the New York City’s Signature Theatre, and the Director of Columbia University’s School of the Arts' M.F.A. program in playwriting.
ODILE GAKIRE KATESE
Associate Director of the University Centre for Arts and Drama at the National University of Rwanda. Ms. Katese is a playwright, novelist, screenwriter, poet, drummer, and actress. Among her many accomplishments in Rwanda are the first women‟s drumming company (Ingoma Nshya, Women Initiatives), the first professional contemporary dance company (Amizero Dance Kompagnie), the first international festival (Festival Arts Azimuts), the first national festival in Rwanda (Rwanda Drum Festival), the first co-op ice cream store (Inzozi Nziza – Sweet Dreams). Ms. Katese participated as the 2008 ‘Playwright in Residence’ at Sundance Institute East Africa. She received the Gilder/Coigney International Theatre Award.
Mr. Kopit is a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist for his plays, “Indians” and “Wings” on Broadway, which also received Tony Award nominations. His book for the musical, “Nine” received a Tony Award nomination in 1982 starring Raul Julia, a revival of “Nine” on Broadway in 2003 received a Tony Award starring Antonio Banderas, and in 2009, Rob Marshall directed the film, Nine, starring Daniel Day Lewis, Judi Dench, Nicole Kidman, Marion Cotillard, Penelope Cruz. Sophia Loren, Kate Hudson and Fergie. Mr. Kopit’s other plays include “Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mamma’s Hung You in the Closet and I’m Feelin’ So Sad,” a new translation of Ibsen’s “Ghosts,” “End of the World with Symposium to Follow,” the book for the musical, “Phantom,” the book for the musical, “High Society,” “Road to Nirvana,” “BecauseHeCan,” originally entitled “Y2K,” and an original musical “Tom Swift and the Secrets of the Universe” with David Yazbek, and Lost Again. Mr. Kopit has taught playwriting at the Rita and Burton Goldberg Graduate Department of Dramatic Writing at NYU, Yale Drama School, Harvard and Princeton. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild, the Dramatists Guild Council, and he heads The Lark Playwrights’ Workshop at The Lark Play Development Center.
Considered by many to be American theater’s greatest librettist, a prolific stage director and screenwriter, Mr. Laurents is most well-known for writing the books for the musicals, “West Side Story,” and “Gypsy” starring Ethel Merman, and the screenplay for the film, “The Way We Were” starring Barbra Streisand and Robert Redford. He made his Broadway debut with “Home of the Brave,” later adapted for film. His films included the scripts for Alfred Hitchcock’s “Rope” starring James Stewart, “Anastasia” starring Ingrid Bergman, “Anna Lucasta" with Philip Yordan, “Summertime” starring Katharine Hepburn, “West Side Story” starring Natalie Wood and Richard Beymer, which received ten Academy Awards, “Bonjour Tristesse" with Jean Seberg and Deborah Kerr, “Gypsy” with Leonard Spigelgass, starring Rosalind Russell and Natalie Wood, and the Oscar-nominated “The Turning Point” starring Shirley MacLaine and Anne Bancroft. His work on Broadway included “The Bird Cage” with Melvyn Douglas and Maureen Stapleton, “The Time of the Cuckoo” starring Shirley Booth, and “A Clearing in the Woods” starring Kim Stanley, “Anyone Can Whistle” with Stephen Sondheim. Mr Laurents directing on Broadway included “Invitation to a March,’ directing and writing the musical “I Can Get It for You Wholesale,” introducing a then-unknown Barbara Streisand to the world. Mr. Laurents transformed his play “The Time of the Cuckoo” into a musical, “Do I Hear a Waltz?” set to Mr. Sondheim's lyrics and composer Richard Rodgers' music. He brought Leslie Uggams to Broadway in “Hallelujah, Baby!” Receiving a Tony for Best Musical. Mr. Laurents directed and co-wrote Phyllis Newman's one-woman show, “The Madwoman of Central Park West,” directed the Broadway musical version of ‘La Cage aux Folles,” winning six Tonys. His memoir, “Original Story by Arthur Laurents: A Memoir of Broadway and Hollywood,” was published in 2000. He wrote and directed the musical, “Nick and Nora,” the dramas, “Attacks of the Heart” and “Claudia Lazlo,” and directed a revival of “West Side Story” in 2008 and 2009, respectively. Continuing to work well into his nineties, Laurents wrote the drama, “Come Back, Come Back, Wherever You Are” which premiered in 2009. Mr. Laurents received the Sidney Howard Award, the American Academy of Arts and Letters Award, and he was inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame.
Gifted author, screenwriter, and producer, his novels included “What Makes Sammy Run,” “The Harder They Fall,” “The Disenchanted” which he adapted into a Broadway play starring Jason Robards, “Sanctuary V,” “Loser and Champion: Muhammad Ali,” “The Four Seasons of Success,” and “Some Faces in The Crowd.” Mr. Schulberg’s celebrated screenplays include “On the Waterfront” starring Marlon Brando, Rod Steiger, Karl Malden, Lee J. Cobb and Eva Marie Saint receiving the Academy Award, “Wind Across the Everglades” written with his brother, Stuart, and directed by Nicholas Ray, “A Face in the Crowd” starring Andy Griffith and Patricia Neal, “Government Girl,” and “Winter Carnival,” written with F. Scott Fitzgerald. In the wake of the Los Angeles riots in the mid-1960’s, he helped create the Watts Writers Workshop. He co-founded in 1971 the Frederick Douglass Creative Arts Center in New York City. Mr. Schulberg is the only non-boxer honored as a Living Legend of Boxing by the World Boxing Association. He published a collection of his boxing pieces, “Sparring with Hemingway,” and a second collection, “The Hardest Games.” In 1982, Mr. Schulberg wrote his autobiography, “Moving Pictures, Memoirs of a Hollywood Prince,” weaving his personal story of his youth in Hollywood growing up in the 1920’s-1930s as the son of B.P. Schulberg, head of Paramount Studios. Mr. Schulberg died in 2009. (The interview was conducted in 2005.)
JOHN PATRICK SHANLEY
Mr. Shanley’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play, “Doubt: A Parable” was first performed on Broadway directed by Doug Hughes, with Cherry Jones, Brian F. O’Byrne, Heather Goldenhersh and Adriane Lenox, receiving a Tony Award, a Drama Desk Award, among others. The play became an award-winning film directed by Mr. Shanley, starring Meryl Streep, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Amy Adams, receiving the Writers Guild of America Award. His films include “Moonstruck” starring Cher, Nicolas Cage, Olympia Dukakis and Danny Aiello, receiving the Academy Award and Writers Guild of America Award, “Five Corners” receiving the Barcelona Theatre Festival’s Special Jury Prize, “The January Man” with Jodie Foster and Tim Robbins, “Joe Versus the Volcano,” which he directed, starring Tom Hanks, Alive, “Congo” based on Michael Crichton’s book, with Laura Linney, “Live from Baghdad” receiving an Emmy Award nomination, and “The Waltz of the Tulips.” Mr. Shanley wrote the libretto for an opera of “Doubt: A Parable” with music by Douglas J, Cuomo. Mr. Shanley also wrote the songs for the films, “Marooned Without You” and “The Cowboy Song.” On Broadway, his play, “Outside Mullinger" Starred Debra Messing and Brian F. O’Byrne. Mr. Shanley has written over twenty-five plays including “Pirate,” “Romantic Poetry,” “Defiance,” “Danny and the Deep Blue Sea,” “Savage in Limbo,” “the dreamer examines his pillow,” “Beggars in the House of Plenty,” “Pirate,” “Welcome to the Moon,” “Four Dogs and a Bone,” “Italian American Reconciliation,” “Missing/Kissing,” “Psychopathia Sexualis,” “Dirty Story,” “Storefront Church,” “Sailor’s Song,” and “Prodigal Son.” Mr. Shanley was inducted into the Bronx Hall of Fame. “Doubt: A Parable” is featured in “The Fourth Wall,” a book of photographs by Amy Arbus, in which he also wrote the foreword.
The first writer to win an Oscar, an Emmy and a Tony, Mr. Stone is probably most-well known for his musical, “1776,” which won the Tony Award, and his film screenplays of “Charade” with Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant (Edgar Award), “Father Goose” with Cary Grant, and “Sweet Charity’ with Shirley MacLaine. He adapted Billy Wilder's film, “Some Like It Hot” for Broadway into the musical, “Sugar,” starring Robert Morse, and John Godey's novel “The Taking of Pelham One, Two, Three” into a film starring Walter Matthau, George Stevens's “Woman of the Year “ receiving a Tony Award into a Broadway musical starring Lauren Bacall. His other shows on Broadway include “The Will Rogers Follies,” “My One and Only” starring Tommy Tune and Twiggy, “Titanic,” Skyscraper; and “Two by Two” starring Danny Kaye receiving a Tony Award. Mr. Stone’s television work included “Adam's Rib” starring Ken Howard, “One of My Wives is Missing” and “The Truth about Charlie.” For eighteen years, Mr. Stone was president of the Dramatists Guild of America. In 2011, “Death Takes a Holiday,” which he completed with Thomas Meehan and Maury Yeston was produced Off-Broadway. He was posthumously inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame. Mr. Stone died in 2003 (The interview was conducted in 2003).
An award-winning writer, a prolific poet, playwright, novelist, short story writer, storyteller, actor, painter, and musician of New Zealand, he is of Ngati Porou, Te Whanau a Apanui, and Ngati Ruanui tribes, and also Māori and Pākeha heritage. His poetry and prose has been published nationally and internationally and translated into several languages. His stories are frequently accompanied by traditional and contemporary Māori music. Mr. Taylor’s publications include: “The Breathing Tree,” “Five Strings,” “Eyes of the Ruru. A Book of Poetry,” “Three Shades. A Book of Poetry,” “He Rau Aroha: Short Stories,” “Ki Te Ao: Short Stories,” He Tangi Aroha: A Novel,” “Soft Leaf Falls of the Moon: Poetry,” “Kohanga and Whaea Kai Rau: Two Plays,” and “Iti te Kopara: Short Stories.” Mr. Taylor has been published in many major New Zealand Anthologies including: “Doors: Poetry for Secondary Schools,” “Jewels in the Water: Poetry for Secondary Schools,” “Where's Waari: A History of the Maori through the Short Story,” “Growing up Maori,” “The Puffin New Zealand Story Book,” “An Anthology of New Zealand Poetry,” “The Penguin Book of Contemporary New Zealand Short Stories,” and “Parihaka.” His first play, Kohanga, was voted play of the year by the Dominion and Evening Post. He was a prominent member of the Māori theatre cooperative, Te Ohu Whakaari, which he helped form, at a time when no such theater existed. He has acted in and written many plays, and received a New Zealand Television award nomination as Billy in Tiger Country. His film appearances include Moby Dick and The Swiss Family Robinson. Mr. Taylor has been Writer-in-Residence at Massey and Canterbury Universities, Rangi Ruru, St. Andrews College, New Zealand Drama School, Whitireia Polytechnic, and Hagley High School. Mr. Taylor won the 1994 Te Ha Award for Poetry, the I.B.M Young Writers award, and was runner up in the Pegasus Book Awards.
Considered “the Arthur Miller of India,” Mr. Tendulkar was the most influential dramatist and theater personality in Marathi, the principal language of the state of Maharashtra in India, which has had a continuous literary history since the end of the classical period in ndia, with nearly seventy-five million speakers today. He was best known for his plays, “Shantata! Court Chalu Aahe" (“Silence! The Court is in Session”), “Ghashiram Kotwal” (“Officer Ghashiram”) – with over 6,000 performances, it remains one of the longest-running plays in the history of Indian theatre, and “Sakharam Binder” (“Sakharam, the Bookbinder”). He wrote twenty-seven full-length plays including “Gidhade" (“The Vultures”), “Safar,” “The Masseur,” and “His Fifth Woman” (in English). Mr. Tendulkar wrote eleven movies in Hindi and eight movies in Marathi, including “Nishant,” “Akrosh" (“The City”), and “Ardh Satya" (“The Half-Truth”), “Manthan” receiving the National Film Award, “Samama" (“Confrontation”), “Simhāasan” (“Throne”), and “Umbartha” (The Threshold – a groundbreaking feature film on women’s activism in India, directed by Jabbar Patel, starring Smita Patil and Girish Karnad. His last screenplay, “Mukhabhinoy” was directed by Shyamanand Jalan, starred Ashish Vidyarti and Pawan Malhotra. Mr. Tendulkar translated nine novels, two biographies, and five plays by other authors into Marathi, including Mohan Rakesh’s “Adhe Adhure,” Girish Karnad’s “Tughlaq,” and Tennessee Williams’ “A Streetcar Named Desire.” He wrote an acclaimed television series, “Swayam Siddha,” with his daughter, Priya Tendulkar in the lead role. He wrote a biography, two novels, five anthologies of short stories, and sixteen plays for children. Mr. Tendulkar received two Maharashtra State government awards, Mahārāshtra Gaurav Puraskār, the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award, the Padma Bhushan Award from the Government of India for his literary accomplishments.
Playwright/director, translator and educator, Ms. Thoron created “Recycling: washi tales,” a collaboration with Japanese paper artist, Kyoko Ibe, performed in Japan and across America, “Country of Kings,” a solo show with Tony award-winning poet, Lemon Andersen. She developed and directed Lemon Anderson’s play, “ToasT,” and “Eleni the Shining One,’ with classical Indian dancer, Rajika, performed at the Puri Chennai Dance Festival. Her plays include “Green Violin,” music by Frank London, performed across America and at St. Petersburg’s Teatr na Mokhvaya, “Charlotte: Life? or Theater?,” music by Gary Fagin, performed in America, London and Amsterdam, “Prozak and the Platypus,” music by Jill Sobule performed across America, and a Cuban nightclub opera, “Hatuey: A Memory of Fire,” music by Frank London. Ms. Thoron adapted and directed in Russian ‘The Great Gatsby,” continuing in repertory for over a decade at the Pushkin Theater in Moscow. As Associate Artistic Director at American Place Theater, she developed and directed new plays and solo shows, and co-founded with Artistic Director, Wynn Handman, “Literature to Life,” a highly successful performance-based literacy program in 1994. For the program, Ms. Thoron has adapted, and directed several books including Sandra Cisneros' “House on Mango Street,” Junot Diaz's “The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao” and Hustron’s “Their Eyes Were Watching God.” Since 1986, she has worked on cross-cultural collaborations with Russian and American theater artists through the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, and was one of the co-founders of A.S.T.I.-American Soviet Theater Initiative. She directed a bilingual production of Oleg Antonov’s “Egorushka” in America.
JEAN-CLAUDE van ITALLIE
One of America’s most gifted playwrights, translator, painter, and teacher, his trilogy of one-act plays, “America Hurrah,” was hailed as the watershed off-Broadway play of the sixties. Mr. van Itallie was one of Ellen Stewart’s original “La MaMa playwrights.” As principal playwright of Joseph Chaikin’s Open Theater in the 1960’s, he wrote “The Serpent.” His other plays include his often produced versions of Chekhov’s four major plays; “Tibetan Book of the Dead,” “King of the United States,” “The Traveler,” “Struck Dumb” written with/for Joseph Chaikin, “Bag Lady,” “Ancient Boys,” and “Light.” His translations include Jean Genet’s “The Balcony,” Bulgakhov’s “Master and Margarita.” He has performed his one-person autobiographical shows: “Confessions and Conversation” directed by Rosemary Quinn, “War, Sex and Dreams’ at La MaMa in New York City, and at Highways in Santa Monica. He co-wrote the libretto with Lois Walden for a new opera: “Mila, Great Sorcerer,” with music by Andrea Clearfield. A painter of large black-on-white calligraphies, Mr. van Itallie’s exhibit, “Characters” was at the Open Center Gallery in New York City in May, 1993. Mr. van Itallie has taught playwriting and performance at Princeton, NYU, Harvard, Yale School of Drama, Amherst, Middlebury, Columbia, University of Colorado, Boulder, Naropa University and many other colleges. He teaches workshops in acting, writing and creativity in Los Angeles, New York City, and at Shantigar Foundation for theater, meditation and healing which he directs on the old farm where he lives in Western Massachusetts. Mr. van Itallie’s books include “The Playwright’s Workbook” and “Tea with Demons, games of transformation.”
SIR DEREK WALCOTT
Distinguished poet, playwright and essayist, and the winner of the 1992 Nobel Prize in Literature, was born in Castries, the capital of St. Lucia, in the West Indies. In 1957, he was awarded a fellowship by the Rockefeller Foundation to study the American theater. In 1959, he founded the Trinidad Theater Workshop, and his plays have been produced by the New York Shakespeare Festival, the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles, and the Negro Ensemble Company. He has published eleven books of poetry, including “Selected Poems,” “Collected Poems 1948-1984,” “The Arkansas Testament,” “Tiepolo’s Hound,” and “Collected Poems: 1948-1984” which won the 1986 Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Poetry. His poems have appeared in “The New Yorker,” “The New York Review of Books,” “The Nation,” and other periodicals. He has written over twenty-five plays including “Henri Christophe: A Chronicle in Seven Scenes,” “Wine of the Country,” “Tri-Jean and His Brothers,” “Dream on Monkey Mountain,” “The Joker of Seville,” “The Isle Is Full of Noises,” “Odyssey,” “Walker and The Ghost Dance,” “O Starry Starry Night,” and “The Capeman" (with book and lyrics in collaboration with Paul Simon). He co-authored “Homage to Robert Frost,” with Joseph Brodsky and Seamus Heaney. Mr. Walcott teaches at Boston University. He has been painting oil and watercolor paintings for more than five decades. His first one-person show in New York City was shown at the June Kelly Gallery. Mr. Walcott’s awards include the Guinness Award for Poetry, a Royal Society of Literature Award, the Cholmondeley Prize, and the Welsh Arts Council International Writers Prize. In 1988, he was awarded the Queen’s Medal for Poetry. He is an Honorary Member of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters.
Writer, educator, scholar, and humanitarian, Mr. Wiesel was the recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Mr. Wiesel was born in Sighet, Transylvania, which is now part of Romania. He was fifteen years old when he and his family were deported by the Nazis to Auschwitz. His mother and younger sister perished, his two older sisters survived. Mr. Wiesel and his father were later transported to Buchenwald, where his father died shortly before the camp was liberated in April 1945. After the war, Mr. Wiesel studied in Paris, and later became a journalist. The distinguished French writer, Francois Mauriac, persuaded Mr. Wiesel to write about his experiences. Mr. Wiesel was the author of more than sixty books of fiction and nonfiction, among them: “Night,” which has been translated into more than thirty languages, “Dawn,” “The Accident,” “A Beggar in Jerusalem” receiving the Prix Medicis Award, “The Fifth Son,” winner of the Grand Prize in Literature from the City of Paris, “From the Kingdom of Memory,” “The Forgotten,” “The Testament” receiving the Prix du Livre Inter Award, “The Jews of Silence,” and “All Rivers Run to the Sea and the Sea is Never Full.” He has written two plays: “The Trial of God” and “Zalmen: or The Madness of God.” In 1977, President Carter appointed Mr. Wiesel as Chairman of the President’s Commission on the Holocaust. He was the President of The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity. He had been the Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities at Boston University. Among the many honors Mr. Wiesel received include the Nobel Peace Prize, Presidential Medal of Freedom, National Humanities Medal, the Medal of Liberty, Ellis Island Medal of Honor, the rank of Grand-Croix in the French Legion of Honor, the first David Ben Gurion Award, and the U.S. Congressional Gold Medal. Mr. Wiesel died in 2016. (This interview was conducted in 2002.)
WILLIAM YELLOW ROBE, JR.
A member of the Assiniboine people, Mr. Yellow Robe, Jr. is from the Fort Peck Indian reservation in northeastern Montana. Author of over fifty plays, many of having been produced by companies including Trinity Rep, Penumbra Theatre, and The Public Theatre in New York city. A member of the St. Paul’s Penumbra Theater Company in Minnesota, and New York’s Ensemble Studio Theater, his plays include “Grandchildren of the Buffalo Soldiers,” “A Stray Dog,” “Better-n-Indins,” “Pieces of Us: How the Lost Find Home,” “Sneaky Blood of the Rez,” “Paper Wars,” “The Council,” “The Star Quilter,” “A Broken Bottle-A Broken Family,” “The Independence of Eddie Rose,” “Wood Bones,” and “The Pendleton Blanket.” He is a Professor of Multi-Culturalism at the University of Maine, and has written two books, “Grandchildren of the Buffalo Soldiers: and Other Untold Stories,” with Dr. Margo Lukens of the University of Maine, and “Where the Pavement Ends.” He has garnered several honors including a Princess Grace Foundation Theater fellowship, the Playwright’s Center Jerome Fellowship, and a Native Writers' Circle of the Americas First Nations Book Award for Prose.