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Conservatory of Performing Arts

John Shepard Named Performer of the Year

Point Park University Theatre Department Chair Named Post-Gazette 'Performer of the Year'

  John Shepard, chair of Point Park University's Conservatory of Performing Arts theatre department, was recently named Performer of the Year by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for his acclaimed role as Willy Loman in The REP's Sept. 2008 production of Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman.

Shepard is an actor, director and associate professor.  He has worked at almost all of the major Pittsburgh theatres, at many of the country's finest regional theatres, on Broadway and off-Broadway, as well as in film and TV.  Shepard is also the author of "Auditioning and Acting for the Camera."  Recent acting credits include Willy Loman in The REP's Death of a Salesman, directed by Robert A. Miller, and in the feature films Adventureland and Hollywood and Wine.  John will be appearing in Quantum Theatre's upcoming production of Mouth to Mouth by Kevin Elyot, directed by Ronald Allan-Lindblom, on stage Jan. 29 through Feb. 22.

Also given accolades in the Post-Gazette's 'Best Theatre 2008' were the following:

Ensemble:  Point Park alumnus Joshua Elijah Reese as Elegba in The Brothers Size (City Theatre)

Leading actor:  Point Park faculty member Mark Staley as the queen in Cymbeline (Quantum) and M.F.A. graduate Randy Kovitz as Lennie in Of Mice and Men (Prime Stage)

Leading actress:  M.F.A. in Acting program director, faculty member and alumna Robin Walsh as Stevie in The Goat (The REP) and Point Park faculty member and alumna Sheila McKenna as Nadia in The Vertical Hour (The REP)

Supporting actor:  Point Park theatre student Justin Mark DeWolf as Billy in The Goat (The REP) and Point Park alumnus Daniel Krell as the Emperor in Amadeus (Pittsburgh Public Theater)

Supporting actress:  Point Park alumna Daina Michelle Griffith as Constanze in Amadeus

Other mentions include Jarrod DiGiorgi as Biff in The REP's Death of a Salesman and Tony Ferrieri's set design for Point Park alumnus Marcus Stevens' Eastburn Avenue (The REP).

In addition to these accomplished individual performances, The REP's Death of a Salesman was named as one of the top ten plays of the year.  Also mentioned were the Conservatory Theatre Company's productions of Can-Can and Thou Shalt Not and The REP's world premiere production of Eastburn Avenue, written by Point Park alumnus Marcus Stevens with music by Doug Levine.

Finally, the Washington Observer-Reporter named as part of its top 10 list of 2008 the Conservatory Theatre Company's Assassins and The REP's The Goat.


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