Illinois Theatre alumni and siblings Brandon J. Dirden and Jason Dirden are both currently on Broadway. Brandon is appearing in Robert Schenkkan's All The Way at the Neil Simon Theatre and his brother Jason is appearing in A Raisin in the Sun at the Barrymore Theatre.
Read More at: Playbill.com
Michael Filerman and Sue Murray at Homecoming in 2009
The Department of Theatre at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is sorry to note the passing of a longtime Friend of Illinois Theatre, Michael Filerman, a graduate of Communications and one of the most successful producers in the history of primetime broadcast television.
Mr. Filerman is best known for his work on such popular programs as Dallas, Knots Landing, Falcon Crest, and other series. He also produced more than a dozen television movies. For the legit stage, Mr. Filerman produced many plays and musicals, receiving eight Tony Award nominations and winning twice, for The Norman Conquests (2009) and Porgy and Bess (2012). He also served as a producer on the current Broadway production of Cinderella.
Mr. Filerman was a classmate at Illinois of Sue Divan Murray, herself a veteran of University Theatre and continuing Friend of Illinois Theatre. For those who had the opportunity to get acquainted with him, Mr. Filerman was likely known as a passionate member of the Illini Nation who always had a wry grin and a wicked wit. It was always a pleasure to encounter him at the theatre or social events.
We are the poorer for the loss of our generous friend, but his love for the theatre--especially Illinois Theatre--insures that his legacy continues to shine.
We extend our deepest sympathies to Mr. Filerman's family and friends.
Congratulations to BFA almunus Michael Halberstam! From Chris Jones in the Chicago Tribune Dec. 27th, 2013:
"Michael Halberstam, the co-founder and artistic director of Writers Theatre in Glencoe, is ambitious, likable and determined. That trifecta of qualities, rarer than you might think in artistic directors of non-profit theaters, goes a long way toward explaining how Writers raised $23 million during 2013 (as of last week) — sufficient money to permanently change the face both of Chicago-area theater and the village of Glencoe."
Illinois Theatre Professor Lisa Gaye Dixon performs in Black Pearl Sings with the Kitchen Theatre Company in Ithaca, New York.