Gerald Freedman

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Gerald Freedman
Born Gerald Alan Freedman
(1927-06-25) June 25, 1927 (age 87)
Lorain, Ohio
Monuments The Gerald Freedman Theatre at UNCSA (2012)
Ethnicity Jewish
Education
Title Dean Emeritus, School of Drama, University of North Carolina School of the Arts
Parents
  • Barnie B. Freedman (a doctor)
  • Fannie (Sepsenwol) Freedman
Awards Obie
Notes

Gerald Freedman (born June 25, 1927) was an American theatre director, librettist, and lyricist, and a college dean.

Life and career[edit]

Freedman was born in Lorain, Ohio and educated at Northwestern University under Alvina Krause and others. He earned both BA and MA degrees there.[3][4] He began his career as assistant director of such projects as Bells Are Ringing, West Side Story, and Gypsy. His first credit as a Broadway director was the 1961 musical The Gay Life. Additional Broadway credits include the 1964 and 1980 revivals of West Side Story, The Incomparable Max (1971), Arthur Miller's The Creation of the World and Other Business (1972), the 1975 and 1976 productions of The Robber Bridegroom, both of which garnered him Drama Desk Award nominations as Outstanding Director of a Musical, The Grand Tour (1979) with Joel Grey, and The School for Scandal (1995) with Tony Randall. He was also the off-Broadway director of the rock musical Hair when it premiered at the Public Theater.[5]

Freedman also wrote the book and lyrics for, as well as directed, the Broadway production of A Time for Singing, the short-lived 1966 musical adaptation of How Green Was My Valley.[citation needed]

Freedman was leading artistic director (1960-1967) and artistic director (1967-1971) of Joseph Papp's New York Shakespeare Festival, artistic director of the Great Lakes Theater Festival in Cleveland, Ohio (1985-1997), and co-artistic director of John Houseman’s The Acting Company (1974-1977). He taught at Yale School of Drama and the Juilliard School. He was Dean of the Drama School at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts (1991-2012). He was the first American ever invited to direct at the Globe Theatre in London.[1]

He is a member of the Kennedy Center New Play Committee and the College of Fellows of the American Theatre. He participates in the Oomoto Institute, Kameoka, Japan.[1]


Bibliography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Whitaker, Lauren (November 19, 2012). "UNCSA NAMES THEATRE FOR GERALD FREEDMAN, DEAN EMERITUS OF SCHOOL OF DRAMA". Winston-Salem, North Carolina: University of North Carolina School of the Arts. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 
  2. ^ a b "Gerald Freedman Biography (1927-)". Theatre, Film, and Television Biographies. filmreference.com. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 
  3. ^ a b Freedman, Gerald (Summer 2008). "My Life in Art: A 21st Century Riff on Stanislavsky" (PDF). The Fellows Gazette. The Roger L. Stevens Address 47 (College of Fellows of the American Theatre). pp. 5–10. Retrieved 2013-12-05. "It started when I went to Northwestern University and fell under the guidance of Alvina Krause, a former girl's gym teacher and eurhythmics instructor who seemed to have discovered Stanislavski and his techniques by accident, by curiosity and by observing the actors of the Twenties and Thirties. I still use many of her teachings in my work both professionally and in mentoring at the North Carolina School of the Arts. They are still valid. Alvina Krause reinforced in Art what I had learned from my Jewish parents in Lorain, Ohio. An unalloyed irreducible/inflexible respect for integrity of execution in all things. I arrived at Northwestern loaded with potential in skills, a hunger to learn about everything and boundless curiosity and energy. Alvina Krause guided me through a maze of possibilities to a clearer vision of who I was meant to be." 
  4. ^ "Introduction of Roger L. Stevens Speaker Gerald Freedman" (PDF). The Fellows Gazette 47 (College of Fellows of the American Theatre). Summer 2008. pp. 4–5. Retrieved 2013-12-05. "...he is a protegé of Alvina Krause at Northwestern University during the golden age of that famous theatre school; he presided over the golden era of John Houseman's Acting Company at Juilliard; he was artistic director during the golden years of Joe Papp's New York Shakespeare Festival; he was instrumental in the creation of a dozen musicals during the golden age of Broadway; he was artistic director of the American Shakespeare Festival in Stratford during that company's golden vintage; last year, he directed Beckett's Happy Days at an Istanbul on the Golden Horn of Turkey; and he recently staged a golden anniversary revival of West Side Story." 
  5. ^ ISHERWOOD, CHARLES (September 16, 2007). "The Aging of Aquarius". New York Times. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 

External links[edit]

  • Gerald Freedman at the Internet Broadway Database
  • Gerald Freedman at the Internet Movie Database
  • Gerald Freedman at the Internet Off-Broadway Database
  • Interview with Gerald Freedman about West Side Story
  • Citron, Stephen (2004). Jerry Herman: Poet of the Showtune. New Haven: Yale University Press. p. 221. ISBN 0300100825. LCCN 2003027632. Retrieved 2013-12-05. "The director was Gerald Freedman, who, except for Hair in its original downtown incarnation, was better known for serious drama than musicals. Because of his attention to minutiae, when the musical opened in San Francisco, it was far too long... Gerald Freedman (1927—) began his career as an assistant on Bells are Ringing and made his Broadway debut as director of the revival of On the Town in 1959. In 1960 he began a long assodciation with the New York Shakespeare Festival with an Obie-winning Macbeth and served as the festival's artisic director from 1967 until 1971. From 1974 to 1977 he was co-director of the American Shakespeare Festival in Stratford, Connecticut, and worked with New York's Roundabout Theatre. Since 1991 he has been dean of the North Carolina School of Fine Arts."