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Jon Fraser

Jon Fraser

Professor of Theatre and Film

B.A., Columbia UniversityM.F.A., New York University

Description

In 1983, playwright/director Jon Fraser was driving to Montauk to begin an Edward Albee Foundation Fellowship in playwriting. Along the way, nature called, and the next possible exit said “Southampton College.” He took the exit and wandered into what looked like a theatre, in search of a rest room. He got caught by a man who turned out to be the director of humanities, and two weeks later, began teaching his first course in theatre as an adjunct at the College. Within two years, he was asked to take over the then-ailing student radio station, since after his graduation from Columbia University, he had worked as a writer for WCBS-TV News. With radio and theatre assignments, he became a full-time faculty member in 1985.

Fraser proposed, and the University created, an affiliation with National Public Radio, and the station flourished, ultimately becoming the flagship station of the Long Island University Public Radio Network. Several years later, he became director of the Arts & Media Division at Southampton. Fraser completed a Master of Fine Arts degree in dramatic writing at Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. In 1996, he transferred to the C.W. Post Campus, first as assistant dean for the School of Visual & Performing Arts, then becoming associate dean the next year, and rising to acting dean of the school upon the retirement of Dean Emeritus Lynn Croton. He then became senior associate dean before returning to the faculty in 2008.

At Post, he has taught courses in acting, directing, playwriting and film. He has been active in the Association for Theatre in Higher Education, holding the national office of treasurer of the organization for two terms. His most recent publication is a series of biographical essays in “The Gay & Lesbian Theatrical Legacy,” published by The University of Michigan Press in 2005. He continues to write plays and screenplays, and is a member of Circle East Theatre Company in New York City.

Specialties

Playwriting, Directing, Acting, Film History

Publications

  • Playwright, “Vert Gallant,” one-act play (2003)
  • Playwright, “Voyage,” one-act play (2001)
  • Playwright, “Bright Golden Haze,” full-length play (2001)
  • Playwright, “Falling from Grace,” full-length play (2001)
  • Playwright, “Heavens to Betsy,” 10-minute play (2000)
  • Playwright, “Red, White, And Blue, a triptych of three one-act plays” (2000)
  • Playwright, “Heavy Mettle,” one-act play (1999)
  • Playwright, “Bungee,” one-act play (1995)
  • Playwright, “Black Forest,” full-length play (1994)
  • Playwright, “Kid Napper,” full-length play (1989)
  • Playwright, “…Against Nature,” full-length play (1983)
  • Screenwriter, “Naked Nude,” unpublished screenplay based on short story by Bernard Malamud
  • Author, “Biographical Entries on Edward Albee, William M. Hoffman, Mart Crowley, and Jean Claude van Itallie,” published in “The Gay and Lesbian Theatrical Legacy” (2005)
  • Author, “Liberal Arts Education vs. Specialized Education,” introductory essay, published in Peterson’s 2007 and 2008 College Guide for Visual Arts Majors (2006, 2007)

Performances

  • Playwright, “Vert Gallant,” produced by Circle East Theater Company, New York, N.Y. (2003)
  • Playwright, “Voyage,” produced by Circle East Theater Company, New Yor, N.Y. (2001)
  • Playwright, “Bright Golden Haze,” commissioned and produced by the Post Theatre Company (2001)
  • Playwright, “Falling from Grace,” produced as a staged reading by Circle East Theater Company, New York, N.Y. (2001)
  • Playwright, “Heavens to Betsy,” 10-minute play produced by Circle East Theater Company, New York, N.Y., as part of "Full Circle" (2000)
  • Playwright, “Red, White, And Blue, a triptych of three one-act plays,” commissioned and produced by Post Theatre Company (2000)
  • Playwright, “Heavy Mettle,” commissioned and produced by Post Theatre Company (1999)
  • Playwright, “Bungee,” produced by Phoenix Ensemble, New York, N.Y. (1995)
  • Playwright, “Black Forest,” produced by Phoenix Ensemble, New York, N.Y. (1994)
  • Playwright, “Kid Napper,” staged readings in New York City (1989)
  • Playwright, “…Against Nature,” staged readings in New York City

Films

  • Actor, films including “Sophie's Choice,” “Broadway Danny Rose,” “Zelig; Lords of Flatbush” “No Picnic” and “Eerie”

Lectures and Presentations

  • Presenter, “Teaching Theatre and Performance in Moments of Global Political Crisis,” plenary breakout session presented at the Association for Theatre In Higher Education Conference (2002)
  • Speaker, “Gay Theatre in the Post-Gay Environment,” presented at the Association for Theatre In Higher Education Conference (1999)
  • Moderator, “Revival or Revisal: Restaging Vintage Musicals,” with Broadway directors, choreographers, designers and producers, presented at the Association for Theatre In Higher Education Conference (1996)
  • Speaker, “Biomechanics: A Method of Stage Movement,” with Russian master teacher Gennadi Bogdanov, presented at the Association for Theatre In Higher Education Conference (1994)

Honors/Awards

  • Semi-finalist, Samuel French One-Act Play Festival (2002)
  • Finalist, New York State Council on the Arts Creative Artists Public Service Program
  • Winner, Edward Albee Foundation Fellowship (1983)

Affiliations

  • The Dramatists Guild
  • Actors' Equity Association
  • Screen Actors Guild
  • Association for Theatre in Higher Education
  • International Council of Fine Arts Deans

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