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Wallace Shawn, credit Don Usner
Wallace Shawn

Play Wright and Actor

Sponsored by the Department of Theatre and
Co-sponsored by the NYS Writers Institute

March 20, 2007
Discusses His 30+ Years Career

4:15 p.m. Seminar |Recital Hall, PAC, Uptown Campus
8:00 p.m. Lecture | Recital Hall, PAC, Uptown Campus

Wallace Shawn
, one of the great character actors of modern film, is also a prize winning playwright. In 2005, he received PEN America's Laura Pels Foundation Award which is presented to "a master American dramatist." In making the award, the judges noted that Shawn "has been ahead of the avant-garde for forty years. In form and content, he has shown the way to a new kind of theater…."

"one of the most important dramatists of our time." - eminent theatrical producer, the late Joseph Papp

"the desperation of trying to survive in an out-of-control society." - Lucinda Franks, New York Times

The son of legendary "New Yorker" editor William Shawn, Wallace Shawn received an Obie Award from "The Village Voice" for his first play, "Our Late Night" (1975), and a second for "The Fever" in 1991. Other plays include "The Mandrake" (1977), "Marie and Bruce" (1980), "The Hotel Play" (1981), "Aunt Dan and Lemon" (1985), and "The Designated Mourner" (1996).

The Designated Mourner"'Marie and Bruce' tells more about the way we really live now than any American play in years." - Jack Kroll, "Newsweek"

As a screenwriter, Shawn co wrote and costarred in Louis Malle's arthouse hit, "My Dinner With Andre" (1981, shown by the Writers Institute Classic Film Series, Fall 1991). As an actor, Shawn made his stage debut in his own translation of Machiavelli's "The Mandrake" (1977), and his film debut in Woody Allen's "Manhattan" (1979). Since then, he has become one of the most in-demand and recognizable actors in America.

My Dinner With AndreHis many film credits include "Southland Tales" (2006), "Melinda and Melinda" (2004), "Clueless" (1995), "Vanya on 42nd Street" (1994), "Shadows and Fog" (1992), "The Moderns" (1988), "Prick up Your Ears" (1987), "The Princess Bride" (1987) [Inconceeeeeeeeeeevable!], and "The Bostonians" (1984). He has also had recurring roles on the TV show "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine," "Clueless," "Crossing Jordan," "Murphy Brown" and "The Cosby Show."

Shawn's adaptations of his own work for the screen have included "The Fever" (2004), "Marie and Bruce" (2004), and "The Designated Mourner" (1997).

The Princess BrideShawn also possesses one of the most sought-after voices in modern animation. His voice has been featured in the films, "Chicken Little" (2005), "The Incredibles" (2004), and "Toy Story 1 and 2" (1995 and 1999).

Wallace Shawn was a guest of the Writers Institute on November 22, 1991 (with Deborah Eisenberg).

Additional Links:
Gazette Article

For additional information, contact the Writers Institute at 518-442-5620 or online at https://www.albany.edu/writers-inst.