Judi Ann Mason

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Judi Ann Mason
Born (1955-02-02)February 2, 1955
Bossier City, Louisiana, United States
Died July 8, 2009(2009-07-08) (aged 54)
Los Angeles, California, USA
Occupation Author, playwright, Producer, Film executive
Nationality United States
Alma mater Grambling State University
Information
Period 1975-2009
Debut works Livin' Fat
Notable work(s) Livin' Fat, A Star Ain't Nothin' But a Hole in Heaven, The Cornbread Man
Awards Norman Lear Award for Comedy
Lorraine Hansberry Playwriting Award

Judi Ann Mason (February 2, 1955 — July 8, 2009) was an American television writer, producer and playwright.

Background[edit]

Mason was born in Bossier City, Louisiana on February 2, 1955. She excelled in English and became interested in playwrighting while in high school. Her professional writing career began while a drama student at Grambling State University.[1]

Career[edit]

While attending Grambling,[2] she won the Norman Lear Award for comedy writing from the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts for her play, Livin’ Fat.[1][3] The following year she won the Lorraine Hansberry Playwriting Award for A Star Ain’t Nothin’ But A Hole In Heaven.[1][4] The New York Times said that Mason had created "captivating characters" in her play, but that she had forfeited letting main character Pokie face the decision between romance and a better life, when the character's boyfriend ends up joining the war in Vietnam.[5] She was named one of Glamour Magazines' Top Ten College women in 1977 alongside her friend actress, Sheryl Lee Ralph. Mason also taught playwriting and screenwriting at a number of colleges and universities for over twenty years. Her last school was Columbia College of Hollywood where she taught screenwriting for the past three years.[6] Mason began her professional writing career in New York city where she was a member of the NEC (Negro Ensemble Company).

Her television writing credits include Good Times, Sanford and Son, A Different World, Beverly Hills, 90210, I'll Fly Away, American Gothic,[7] Generations, and Guiding Light. Her film credits include Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit.[8] She is also renowned for the Emmy Award/CableACE Award nominated Sophie And The Moonhanger. Her stageplay credits include The Cornbread Man[9] and Indigo Blues.[10]

Mason counted Patti LaBelle, LaTonya Richardson, Jennifer Holiday and Jheryl Busby as personal friends. She is the one who gave Patti LaBelle her first acting credit on TV on the show A Different World.

She was a mother of two, daughter Mason Synclaire Williams and son Austin Barrett Williams. She taught playwriting around the globe at a number of universities including the University of Florida, Gainesville, and the University of Louisville. She also produced feature films and plays for the stage until her death.

Mason died unexpectedly of a ruptured abdominal aorta on July 8, 2009.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Andrews, Tina (August–September 2009). Stayton, Richard, ed. "Tribute: ...And the People Shall Know Thy Name". Written By (Writers Guild of America, West) 13 (5): 8–11. 
  2. ^ www.gram.edu Retrieved on May 17, 2008.
  3. ^ www.onstagechattanooga.com Retrieved on May 17, 2008.
  4. ^ www.coterietheatre.org Retrieved on May 17, 2008.
  5. ^ query.nytimes.com Retrieved on May 17, 2008.
  6. ^ www.geocities.com[dead link] Retrieved on May 17, 2008.
  7. ^ garycole.net Retrieved on May 17, 2008.
  8. ^ Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit at the Internet Movie Database
  9. ^ www.arts.ufl.edu Retrieved on May 17, 2008.
  10. ^ www.broadwayworld.com Retrieved on May 17, 2008.

External links[edit]