Walt Witcover

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Walter Witcover Scheinman (August 24, 1924 – November 15, 2013) was an American actor, director, and acting teacher born in New York City. His parents were Louis J. Scheinman, a sculptor and composer, and Juliette T. Benton, a critic and lecturer.[1] He received a BA and MA from Cornell University and served in World War II.[2]

Witcover studied acting under his mentor Lee Strasberg, as well as with Herbert Berghof, and Curt Conway. As director, three of his Off-Broadway productions won Obie Awards. He taught acting and directing at Berghof's studio for twenty-five years and was Professor of Theatre Arts at the State University of New York at Purchase Theatre Arts program, and at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. He also was co-founder and Artistic Director of Masterworks Laboratory Theatre.[3] He later founded the Witcover Acting Studio in New York City.[4] He directed plays featuring Jane Alexander, Dominic Chianese, Jerry Stiller, Lee Marvin and Ernest Borgnine, among many others.

His students have included Lance Henriksen, Tony Musante, Robert Clohessy.

Masterworks Laboratory Theater[edit]

MLT Productions[edit]

In 1954, Witcover staged an off-Broadway production of three one-act plays using 3 actors, entitled "Three by 3". The program included "Box and Cox" (1847) by John Maddison Morton with actors Jerry Stiller as Box, Charles Nelson Reilly as Cox and Anne Meara as Mrs. Bouncer. The other two plays in the program were "How He Lied to Her Husband" by George Bernard Shaw and "John John, Tib and Father John" (1533) by John Heywood.

In 1998, Witcover again directed "Box and Cox" and "How He Lied to Her Husband" with Victoria Thompson, Michael Stebbins and Nick Psaltos.


Witcover authored the 2004 book Living on Stage: Acting from the Inside Out: A Practical Process.[5][6]


  1. ^ Witcover bio
  2. ^ Witcover Acting Studio bio
  3. ^ Masterworks Laboratory Theater biography of Walt Witcover
  4. ^ All the Ships at Sea - Biographies
  5. ^ Walt Witcover with foreword by Jerry Stiller (2004). Living on Stage: Acting from the Inside Out: A Practical Process. Watson-Guptill. ISBN 0-8230-2832-1.
  6. ^ http://www.news.cornell.edu/essentials/2013/12/once-upon-hill-co-author-walt-witcover-dies