In memoriam: Dan Kern

In memoriam: Dan Kern

Oct 4 2023

The Theater Department was saddened to hear of the recent passing of legendary Philadelphia actor and director Dan Kern. Dan was a beloved member of the Temple Theater Faculty, husband to fellow Temple professor Nancy Boykin, father to Temple alum, actor James Kern, father-in-law to Megan, and new grandfather to Asher. Dan's contributions to the Department of Theater and to so many students are profound. He was a consummate artist and professional, who expected the best from students while always offering his generous guidance, support, and mentorship.

Dan had a prolific career in stage and screen acting and can be seen in multiple guest spots on television shows like Star Trek: Voyager, Frasier, and in the films President’s Man and Me and the Big Guy. While in Los Angeles, he was awarded two LA Drama Critics Circle Awards, one for direction for Juno and the Paycock at Interact LA, and one for playing the role of Leontes in A Winter's Tale at A Noise Within. Dan moved to Philadelphia from the west coast in 2000 after receiving a job at Temple Theaters, where he served as both the Head of Directing and later, Head of Acting. During his time at Temple, he directed classics such as Anton Chekhov’s Three Sisters, Shakespeare’s Macbeth, and performed in a production of Measure for Measure as the Duke. He was also a prolific stage actor in the Philadelphia area, starring in many regional theater productions, occasionally alongside his wife Nancy. In 2008, Dan received the Barrymore Award for Best Director of a Play for his work on Skylight at The Lantern Theater.

Dan will be sorely missed by those who knew him and whose lives he touched in such a meaningful way. May he rest in peace, and may his memory be a blessing.

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