Guest Artist Bios

January 29, 2014


JP Allen is an award-winning writer/director of independent feature films and stage plays.  His first feature film, COFFEE AND LANGUAGE, premiered at the Hamptons International Film Festival where it was nominated for the Golden Starfish Award and for Best Screenplay. He wrote, produced and acted a lead role in the film STEPHANIE'S IMAGE starring Academy Award Winner Melissa Leo. His other films include GAMBLING, BELIEF, "Meeting with Chekhov", SEX AND IMAGINING (based on his play produced in NYC and LA), CENTAUR and LOVE AND DEMONS.  Also a novelist, his most recent work is THE FILMMAKER.

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January 29, 2014

Edgerton Guest Artist

Sheila Callaghan's plays have been produced and developed with Soho Rep, Playwright's Horizons, South Coast Repertory, Clubbed Thumb, The LARK, Actor's Theatre of Louisville, New Georges, Woolly Mammoth, and Rattlestick Playwright's Theatre, among others. Sheila is the recipient of the Princess Grace Award for emerging artists, a Jerome Fellowship from the Playwright's Center in Minneapolis, a MacDowell Residency, a Cherry Lane Mentorship Fellowship, the Susan Smith Blackburn Award, and the prestigious Whiting Award. Her plays have been produced internationally in New Zealand, Australia, Norway, Germany, Portugal, and the Czech Republic. These include SCAB, CRAWL FADE TO WHITE, CRUMBLE (Lay Me Down, Justin Timberlake), WE ARE NOT THESE HANDS, DEAD CITY, LASCIVIOUS SOMETHING,...

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October 17, 2013


Steven Berkoff was born in London in 1937. He studied Drama in London and Paris. He performed with repertory companies before forming the London Theatre Group (L.T.G.) in 1968. Their first professional production was In the Penal Colony, an adaptation of a short story by Kafka. Berkoff's first original stage play East, was presented at the Edinburgh Festival in 1975.
Other original plays include...
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October 17, 2013

Playwright-THE THUGS


Adam Bock's plays include The Receptionist (MTC, Trinity Rep, Studio Theater, Outer Critics nom.) The Drunken City (Playwrights' Horizons, Outer Critics nom), The Thugs (Soho Rep, OBIE Award), ...

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October 1, 2013

Artistic Director of Playwrights Horizons

Tim Sanford is the Artistic Director of Playwrights Horizons, a writer's theater dedicated to the support and development of contemporary American playwrights, composers and lyricists, and to the production of their new work.  Beginning as a literary intern in 1984, Tim went on to serve for nine years as Literary Manager and two years as Associate Artistic Director, before assuming leadership of the theater in January 1996.  

In his tenure he has produced writers as diverse as Edward Albee, Christina Anderson, Billy Aronson, Jon Robin Baitz, Annie Baker, Tanya Barfield, Neal Bell, Adam Bock, Keith Bunin, David Cale, Kirsten Childs, Julia Cho, Kia...

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August 22, 2013

Culley Guest Artist - Director, THE THUGS

Larissa Kokernot is happy to be directing The Thugs at Occidental this fall as the Culley Guest Artist.  Larissa has been working in the professional theatre for over 30 years with regional directing credits at Indiana Repertory Theatre, Ten Thousand Things, the Guthrie Theater, The Playwrights' Center, California Repertory Theatre, Project Y at 59e59, La Jolla Playhouse and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival where she was the 2007 Phil Killian Directing Fellow.  Larissa served as Artistic Associate of Eye of the Storm Theatre in Minneapolis for 6 years where she directed The Death of the Father of Psychoanalysis (& Anna), Skylight and Two Sisters and a Piano as well as the seeds of many new plays.  Larissa has been living and working in the Los...

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August 15, 2013

Assistant Director - AGAMEMNON

Captain Jason Barlaan first enlisted in the Marine Corps in 2005 upon graduating from the University of California at Santa Barbara with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre.  After spending two years at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, he reported to Quantico, VA where he earned his Commission as a Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps.  In 2008 he was sent to Fallujah, Iraq in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. Two years later he was sent to Camp Leatherneck, Afghanistan in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM where he earned his second Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.  After being honorably discharged in 2011, Captain Barlaan enrolled into the California Institute of the Arts where he is now receiving his Master of Fine Arts degree also in Theatre.  Theatre credits...

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April 16, 2013

Oxy Alumnus '48 and Professor Emeritus

Omar Paxson’s (’48) interest in theater began during the second world war when he was sent to LSU to train as an army engineer - but watched rehearsals in the theater department instead. On leave in London after fighting on the front lines, Omar  “saw the young Lawrence Olivier and Ralph Richardson in Henry IV, Parts 1 & 2… and Dame Edith Evans in The ...

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March 27, 2013

Hairspray Choreographer!

Cheryl has been in the entertainment business for over 30 years working in theater, commercials, film and television. She started her career as an assistant choreographer to Gene Kelly and Kenny Ortega in Coppola's film, One from the Heart and went on to work with Meryl Streep in Death Becomes Her. She can be seen in over 20 films including Xanadu, Tap, Pennies from Heaven, 500 Days of Summer, and the new Muppet Movie. Cheryl has danced beside such legends as Gregory Hines, Sammy Davis Jr., The Nicholas Brothers and Donald O'Connor. Some of her favorite television credits are Glee, General Hospital, the Academy and Golden Globe Awards, How I Met Your Mother, 2 Broke Girls, and Mike and Molly. Theater performances include the Los Angeles and First National companies of Cats and 42nd Street and over 10 companies of ...

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March 19, 2013

Dan Dietz is the inaugural Guest Artist in Residence for the Edgerton Program in Theater 


Dan Dietz's new play, American Misfit, is receiving its world premiere production, directed by Michael Michetti at The Theatre @ Boston Court (April 4 - May 12, 2013).  
In addition to his work as a playwright, Dan is currently a writer for the CBS drama, Person of Interest. We are pleased that, through the Edgerton Guest Artist Program, Oxy students can benefit from both aspects of Dan's career: in the workshop described here and in a post-show discussion on April 12, following the final preview of American Misfit.
Dan Dietz’s plays include tempOdyssey, Tilt Angel, American Misfit, The Sandreckoner, Clementine in the Lower Nine and Home Below Zero. His work has been commissioned, developed and presented at...
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