Theatre alumni reach a larger audience
In the past year, graduates and former students of the UDM Theatre Company have been making a splash across the country. Last summer in New England, David Leidholdt '88, produced Hair and Donna McKechnie's one-woman show. On the opposite coast, Randy Gianetti '77, and Mary Gutzi '75, did an evening of hits from shows they've done together (Ragtime, Les Miserables, Evita) at the Fullerton Civic Light Opera. In September, Anita Barone '86, was in the national news with the lead in the new sitcom The War At Home. This is actually her fourth lead as a suburban mom: she was also in The Ties That Bind, Daddio, and The Jeff Foxworthy Show. In October, Ted Raimi was in town to promote his latest movie – his sixth, plus the cult TV shows, Xena, Warrior Princess, Hercules, and SeaQuest DSV.
In November, Marcus Neville '81, with many Broadway shows and national tours to his credit including the lead in The Full Monty, began workshopping a new musical by James Lapine. Joseph Alvaro '81, has a highly successful video production outfit in New Jersey, and of course Angelina Fiordellisi '81, continues to run the Cherry Lane Theatre off-B'way . . . and these are just the ones who send us letters!
Here in Detroit, our graduates are everywhere. Dana Gamarra '86, is the longtime production stage manager of the Gem Theatre, Kate Peckham '94, runs the acting program for Mosaic Youth Theatre, Chris Bremer '85, is managing director of the Jewish Ensemble Theatre, Greg Trzaskoma '94, runs the Warren Civic Theatre, Mary Bremer '85, '86, runs the Dearborn Family Theatre and the Dearborn Youth Theatre. Harry Wetzel is technical director of Detroit Repertory Theatre (and the director of their current play, Yemaya's Belly). Eric Maher '99, formerly managing director, then artistic director of the Planete Ant Theatre, just moved to the Zeitgeist to direct and design. Mary Callaghan Lynch '77 is the engine behind Motor City Lyric Opera; and James Bowen continues to earn awards, acting at Meadowbrook and Plowshares Theatres.
Starting in May, Keegan Michael Key '93, will appear on Celebrity Poker, which gives him the TV hat trick, with three shows running concurrently: he is also on Mad TV and Animal Planet's The Planet's Funniest Animals!