Will Shephard is a professional actor, director, playwright, and performance artist with a broad range of professional experience from New York’s Off-Off Broadway theatre to regional theatre and films. He has performed at the Ashland, Oregon and New York Shakespeare Festivals and was a founding member of New York’s Performance Group, directed by Richard Schechner. He subsequently received a Fulbright grant to study with Jerzy Grotowski and the Polish Laboratory Theatre in Wroclaw, Poland. In addition to a number of smaller independent films, he has appeared in major motion pictures such as Phantom of the Paradise, Deathrace 2000, and King Kong (1976), and he wrote, produced and directed his own short 16mm. film, Love’s Exquisite Joy. He was Artistic Director for the Palouse Performance Project (1996-98) and wrote, produced, directed, and performed in the Project’s multimedia performance, The Woman Who Turned To Soap, featured in the 1997 Seattle Fringe Festival. In the 70’s, Shephard wrote, produced, directed, and performed his one man show about American author Jack London, The True Story of Jack London, in Los Angeles, New York, Anchorage, AK, and Orlando, FL, to critical acclaim. Will Shephard is also an educator with over forty years’ experience teaching acting, directing and playwriting at the university level. In 1998-99 he received a Senior Lecturer Fulbright grant to teach and direct in India where he directed a production of Brecht’s The Caucasian Chalk Circle at the University of Punjab in Chandigarh. He has also taught acting workshops in China, Malaysia, Singapore, Belarus, Turkey, and Israel. He is now a Professor of Theatre at California State University, Monterey Bay’s department of Music and Performing Arts.
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The Dionysus Group
By William Shephard
Published: August 22, 2012.
The Dionysus Group is a story from tumultuous times in American history (1967-1970) told through the eyes of a young actor in New York’s Off-Off Broadway theater production of Dionysus in 69 by The Performance Group, directed by Richard Schechner. Themes of passion, intoxication, violence, and bloodshed in Dionysus in 69, were indicative of the times in which the performers lived.
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