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Michael Gene Sullivan

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Michael Gene Sullivan BIO

Michael Gene Sullivan is an actor, writer, director, blogger, and teacher committed to developing theatre of social and economic justice, of political self-determination, and, of course, musical comedy.

A veteran actor, Michael has acting credits at the Bay Area's three Tony award-winning regional theatres: American Conservatory Theater , The San Francisco Mime Troupe, and Berkeley Repertory Theatre. He has also performed at the Denver Center Theatre Company, The Magic Theatre, The Marin Theatre Company, Symmetry Theatre, Central Works, Word for Word , Lorraine Hansberry Theater , San Francisco Shakespeare Festival , and Theaterworks, as well performances off-Broadway, at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Asian People's Theater Festival (Hong Kong), The Canadian Popular Theatre Festival, the International Outdoor Theatre Festival (Korea), the Israel Theatre Festival, and the Theatre Action Festival (Belgium,) and since 1988 he has been a principal member of the San Francisco Mime Troupe , where he has acted in, directed, and/or directed over twenty-five plays in the US and abroad.

His one person show, "DID ANYONE EVER TELL YOU - YOU LOOK LIKE HUEY P. NEWTON?" , premiered at the New York Fringe Festival, and went to award winning and critically acclaimed runs at the Vancouver Fringe Festival, and at the Eureka Theatre in San Francisco.

A contributing writer on San Francisco Mime Troupe shows since the mid-nineties, in 2000 Michael became Resident Playwright for the Troupe, and has written and co-written some of the biggest hits it the history of the company, including 1600 TRANSYLVANIA AVENUE, MR. SMITH GOES TO OBSCURISTAN (with Josh Kornbluth), VERONIQUE OF THE MOUNTIES, GODFELLAS, RED STATE, (nominated for The San Francisco Bay Area Critic's Circle Award for Best Original Script of 2008,) the Mime Troupe's 50th Anniversary production TOO BIG TO FAIL, (nominated for Best Original Script of 2009), POSIBILIDAD, or DEATH OF THE WORKER, 2011's apocalyptic extravaganza, 2012: THE MUSICAL!, and FOR THE GREATER GOOD, or THE LAST ELECTION.

"1984", his critically-acclaimed stage adaptation of George Orwell's classic novel, opened at Los Angeles' Actors' Gang Theatre under the direction of Academy Award winning actor Tim Robbins. Approved by the Orwell Estate, and published by Playscripts, Inc. (the first U.S. published adaptation in 50 years), "1984" has had repeated extended runs in LA, toured to Australia, Europe, Asia, Central and South America, and 40 of the United States. In 2013, in honor of Orwell's service on the Barcelona Front during the Spanish Civil War, Michael worked with acclaimed novelist and playwright Lluis-Anton Baulenas on translating his stage adaptation into Catalan, what long-time Spanish dictator Francisco Franco called the "language of the anti-Fascists." That translation premiered at Almeria Teatre in Barcelona, and was published by Edicions de 1984.

Other plays written by Michael include FUGITIVE/SLAVE/ACT, a drama based on a true story from pre-Civil War America, RECIPE, an all-woman political farce, scheduled to open October 2014 at Central Works (and which in 2012 had an all-star reading at the Will Geer Theater in Los Angeles) and a modern, worker oriented adaptation of Charles Dickens' CHRISTMAS CAROL. His screenplay work includes ANGELS, (written with John Grilley) a drama about the sex trade in post-colonial modern Philippines, and LOVE YOU MADLY, a bio-pic on the life of Duke Ellington, comissioned in part by the Ellington Estate.

A regular contributor to Huffingtonpost.com, one of the foremost political sites on the web, he also gave the closing speech at the 2008 Theater Bay Area Annual Conference (which was reviewed!)

An accomplished director, Michael has also staged several of SFMT's most popular shows, including 1600 TRANSYLVANIA AVENUE, VERONIQUE, COAST CITY CONFIDENTIAL, RED STATE, FOR THE GREATER GOOD , and co-directed MAKING A KILLING and MR. SMITH GOES TO OBSCURISTAN . Other directing credits include work with the San Francisco Shakespeare Festival, and DEATH AND THE MAIDEN (Mystic Bison Theatre), and the 2012 production of JULIUS CAESAR for the African American Shakespeare Company. Michael was Artistic Director of the Street of Dreams Theater ('80 - '86), Associate Artistic Director of the Lorraine Hansberry Theater ('93 - '94.) From 2008 - 2010 Michael was also the director of San Francisco's all- woman, all-amazing, and all-hilarious CIRCUS FINELLI.

Michael's awards include The San Francisco Chronicle Award for Outstanding Achievement in Acting, The Bay Guardian's Upstage/Downstage Award and San Francisco Bay Area Drama Critic Circle Solo Performance Award nomination for "DID ANYONE EVER TELL YOU..." , and The Dean Goodman Choice Award for Principal Performer and Drama Critics Circle Award Nomination for his portrayal as Flick in VIOLET at Theatreworks. Michael was awarded the Sacramento Area Regional Theatre Award for Best Direction for I AM A MAN at the Harbor Theatre and his re-staging of SFMT's I AIN'T YO UNCLE won several Dramalogue Awards, including Outstanding Direction. In 2007 Michael was awarded the Theatre Bay Area New Works Grant for playwrighting.

One of the original teachers for the San Francisco Shakespeare Festival's groundbreaking "Midnight Shakespeare" program for inner-city teens, Michael has been a teacher and director for the California Shakespeare Festival Summer Camp, and has taught workshops in Play Creation, Acting, Melodrama, and Physical Comedy at colleges and universities across the country. He has also worked as a "script doctor" and advisor for emerging playwrights, and has served as Playwright-in-Residence for the Young California Playwright's Project since 2001, teaching at-risk high school students how to create plays on subjects that matter to them, using revolutionary drama to change the world into the place they know it can be.

Michael Gene Sullivan Photos

Michael Gene Sullivan News


What did our critic think of SF MIME TROUPE OPENS 64TH SEASON WITH 'BREAKDOWN' at Various Locations?

Remote Announces Artistic Team For Mixed-Reality Performance Piece Inspired By Ntozake Shange's Novel, LILIANE

Remote Theater, an award-winning theater collective born at the start of the pandemic, today announced the artistic team for a mixed-reality piece (using augmented and virtual reality) inspired by late Obie-award winning playwright Ntozake Shange's coming of age novel, Liliane. It is also the first day of the production's Kickstarter campaign where it seeks to raise funds to offset the costs required for this production. The production - titled Your Mind, Girls, is the First Battleground For Freedom - is set to launch in early 2024 in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Review: CLUE at SF Playhouse

What did our critic think of CLUE at SF Playhouse?

Remote Theater to Livestream Concert Performance of THE FOURTH MESSENGER in March

Remote Theater, an award-winning online theater company born of the pandemic, will livestream a concert performance of THE FOURTH MESSENGER-a contemporary Western re-imagining of the Buddha legend featuring a flawed, female Buddha figure-which will take place at The Ark in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on Saturday, March 18 at 1 pm.

CLUE to be Presented at San Francisco Playhouse in March

Directed by San Francisco Playhouse Co-Founder and Producing Director Susi Damilano, Clue will perform March 9 – April 22, 2023 at San Francisco Playhouse.

West Coast Premiere Of MEET ME AT DAWN Comes to the Radial Theater Project Next Month

Radial Theater Project has announced that tickets are now on sale for the twice-postponed West Coast Premiere of Meet Me at Dawn by Zinnie Harris, running March 24 - April 8, 2023 at 18th & Union in Seattle's Central District.

Goodman Theatre Announces Jamal Howard as the 2023 Michael Maggio Directing Fellow

Goodman Theatre has announced Jamal Howard (he/him) as the 2023 Michael Maggio Directing Fellow. A Chicago-based director and choreographer, Howard is the co-artistic director of New American Folk Theatre and an associate company member with TUTA Theatre.

Digital Artist Hope Hutman Joins Remote Theater To Develop A New Mixed Reality Theater Project

Remote Theater, an award-winning online theater company born of the pandemic, has recruited Hope Hutman as a resident artist. Hope, a pioneer in digital storytelling, will lead the development of an innovative mixed reality theater project for Remote.

Photos: Redtwist Theatre Presents the World Premiere Of THE GREAT KAHN, Playing Through February 26

See photos from the Redtwist Theatre’s world premiere of The Great Khan, written by Michael Gene Sullivan and directed by Jamal Howard, playing through February 26, at Redtwist Theatre.

Cast & Creative Team Announced for THE GREAT KHAN World Premiere at Redtwist Theatre

Redtwist Theatre will present the world premiere of, The Great Khan, written by Michael Gene Sullivan and directed by Jamal Howard, January 19 – February 26, 2023. See who is starring in the cast, how to get tickets and more!

Redtwist Theatre Announces 2023 Season; Tickets On Sale Tomorrow

Redtwist Theatre has announced its 2023 season at its home in Edgewater.

ROE V WADE THEATER ANTHOLOGY Is Now Available On Demand Until December 1

Remote Theater, an award-winning, online theater company born at the beginning of the pandemic, has announced that THE CHOICE, an anthology of seven short plays about the rise and fall of Roe v. Wade, is now available on demand, free of charge, until December 1, 2022.

Radial Theater Project Presents MY BODY NO CHOICE: A Free Reading, October 24

Radial Theater Project will present a free reading of My Body No Choice, a collection of eight new monologues by eight American playwrights, on Monday October 24 at 18th & Union in Seattle’s Central District.

San Francisco Playhouse to Present AS YOU LIKE IT Musical Beginning in November

San Francisco Playhouse will continue its 20th Anniversary season with the imaginative and exhilarating hit musical adaptation of William Shakespeare's As You Like It. Helmed by San Francisco Playhouse's Artistic Director Bill English with music direction by Dave Dobrusky and choreography by Nicole Helfer, As You Like It will perform November 17, 2022 – January 14, 2023.

Remote Theater Reschedules Premiere of THE CHOICE About Roe. v. Wade

Remote Theater has announced a new date for the 'The Choice,' an anthology of seven short plays about the rise and fall of Roe v. Wade. The event will premiere on November 5, 2022, 4PM Pacific, 7PM Eastern, the Saturday before Election Day.

Remote Theatre Announces New Dates for THE CHOICE

Remote Theater will now premiere THE CHOICE -- Seven Stories About Roe v. Wade -- on Saturday, September 24, 4 PM Pac./7PM Eastern.

Photos: Inside Look at TheatreWorks' Production of RAGTIME

TheatreWorks Silicon Valley continues its 51st season with the hit musical Ragtime. This sweeping and stirring musical masterpiece paints a portrait of America at the dawn of the twentieth century, interweaving the lives of three families—an African American family, a Jewish Immigrant family, and a wealthy white family—finding their places and pursuing the American Dream in a rapidly changing world. Featuring a Tony Award-winning book by Pulitzer Prize finalist Terrence McNally (Master Class, Kiss of the Spider Woman, The Rink) and a Tony Award-winning score by Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens (Once on This Island, Anastasia, Seussical The Musical), this musical is based on E. L. Doctorow’s best-selling novel of the same name. Ragtime will be presented June 1-26, 2022 (press opening: June 4) at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts. For tickets (starting at $30) and more information the public may visit TheatreWorks.org or call (877)-662-8978.

Christine Dwyer to Star as Mother in RAGTIME at TheatreWorks Silicon Valley

This sweeping and stirring musical masterpiece paints a portrait of America at the dawn of the twentieth century, interweaving the lives of three families—an African American family, a Jewish Immigrant family, and a wealthy white family—finding their places and pursuing the American Dream in a rapidly changing world.

Dominique Morisseau's BLOOD AT THE ROOT Comes to Custom Made Theatre in May

Custom Made Theatre Co. (Brian Katz, Executive Artistic Director) continues its 23rd season with the Bay Area Premiere of “Blood at the Root” by trailblazing playwright Dominique Morisseau, directed and choreographed by Darryl V. Jones. 

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