General information

1960s

Ralph Allison (MA 1969)

Allison is associate professor of theatre and coordinator of the Theatre Performance Specialization at Concordia University, Loyola Campus in Montreal, Quebec. Ralph is a specialist in theatre movement, mask and mime, and trained at the school of Jacques Lecoq in Paris. In Canada, Ralph has performed at the National Arts Center in Ottawa and the Centaur Theatre in Montreal. In the US, he has acted at the American Conservatory theatre in San Francisco and the Asolo Theatre in Sarasota, Florida.

Rama Lama/Denny Norwood (BA 1969)

keeps on keepin’ on in Santa Cruz, after a 30-year career spent mainly as a professional scriptwriter. However, one cannot overlook his songwriting and his life as an underground musician, try as one might. The Rama Lama BMI canon includes “3-D Astral Teenage Love,” “Blue Schmuck Shoes,” “Honk if You Love Jesus,” the deathless “DOA in San Jose,” and the prophetic “Maybe Someday We’ll Be Poor.” Rama has worked in conceptual art, journalism, collage and performance; for ABC, NBC, CBS and PBS; for Norman Lear, Al Burton, Jack Millman, Chris Bearde and Charlie Greene. His songs and radio program, film (“Windfall”) and novel-in-progress about his goofy life in show bidness and “art” (RAMA LAMA by Denny Norwood) may be found on Life Is Dull. And in these troubled times, who can resist a look at Rama’s 1985 LA Free Press column, “I Was On Welfare For the CIA”? “It might be slightly comforting for modern students to see that one such as they did enter into an interesting and remunerative life of art as a direct result of his course of academics,” Rama wrote. “The institution might like to present some evidence along this line, whether the students think they want to know about it or not… Because, like the plays of Ibsen, life after academia is no packed lunch.”

Keith Muscutt (MA 1969) in real life is Assistant Dean of the Arts at UC Santa Cruz and in his other life is an explorer and an expedition photographer. He has published a lush volume of photographs, Warriors of the Gods: A Lost Civilization in the Upper Amazon of Peru (University of New Mexico Press, 1998). In 1985, Keith established the Fundación Benéfica Niños de Chuquibamba (FBNC), “a small private charity dedicated to improving the health and education of the children who live in the Andean village of Chuquibamba in Amazonas, Peru,” the town on the cover of his book. The FBNC gives the village children donated medical supplies and clothes, and has set up a small local clothing manufacturing co-op. If you want to help, contact the Fundación at fbnc@chachapoyas.com.

Larry Ferguson (MA 1968)

is a Hollywood screenwriter, producer and director. He wrote the script for the video Rollerball, a remake of the 1970s flick about sports violence. He was also the screenwriter for the thrillers The Hunt for Red October, Alien 3 and Highlander. Directorial credits include Gunfighter’s Moon and Beyond the Law.

David Rinear (MA 1968)

as a student at UCD was a Regent’s Fellow, and has had a long and productive career since graduation. Today he is professor of drama and director of theatre at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. He has written many scholarly articles as well as (with Mahard and Wilmeth) Theatre in the United States: A Documentary History, Vol. 1 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995) and The Temple of Momus: Mitchell’s Olympic Theatre (Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 1987). He recently directed Women of Letters for the Firelight Players in San Antonio, and 6 Characters in Search of an Author at Trinity. Before going to Trinity in 1989, David was an an outstanding professor at the University of Oklahoma School of Drama.

John Ammirati (BA 1967)

is a Theatrical Lighting Designer and Visual Artist based in San Francisco. He has been active in the production industry for 25 years designing lighting for exhibits, industrial theatre, corporate centers, and special events. He was a set designer and instructor at the University of California at Santa Cruz, and received the Bay Area Critics Circle Award in set design. John received his MFA in theatrical design from New York University Tisch School of the Arts, and his BA from the University of California at Davis. His work also encompasses other mediums of visual art including drawing, site specific works, and sculpture. His art is included in a recent book, SITE MATTERS, by Carol J. Burns + Andrea Kahn, published in 2005 by Routledge, NY; the chapter including John’s work is by Lucy R. Lippard. For further information and photos of John’s lighting designs and artwork please see his website: www.ammiratix2.com

Jere Wade (BA ‘57, MA 1966)

has retired after 33 years as professor of theatre at California State University Stanislaus. He and Penny, his wife of 45 years, live in Walnut Creek and travel extensively. Jere and Penny have three sons and six grandchildren.

Adele Edling Shank (BA 1963)

is on the playwriting faculty of the Theatre and Dance Department at UC San Diego. During her illustrious career she has received many awards, including an NEA Playwriting Fellowship, Rockefeller Playwrights-in-Residence Grant, The Great American Playwriting Contest of the Actors Theatre of Louisville, and a Dramatist Guild/CBS Award. Her plays have been produced in American theatres in San Francisco, New York, Louisville, and Los Angeles, and in England. Her publishers are West Coast Plays or the TCG (New York).

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