Professor Brandon McShaffrey wins coveted Charles Nelson Reilly Prize for directing Temple Opera production!

Professor Brandon McShaffrey wins coveted Charles Nelson Reilly Prize for directing Temple Opera production!

Oct 14 2021

We all know Professor Brandon McShaffrey is a winner -- he's one of our favorite professors on campus and an alum of Temple's MFA in Theater Directing.


But now there are more congratulations in order, because he has won The American Prize in Directing —The Charles Nelson Reilly Prize, college/university opera division, 2021 for his work on the Temple Opera Theater's 2019 production of "L'elisir d'amore" --


The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts is the nation's most comprehensive series of non-profit competitions in the musical and theater arts, designed to recognize and reward the best artists, ensembles and composers -- and directors... like McShaffrey. The American Prize was founded in 2009 and is awarded annually in many areas of the performing arts. 



Check here for the official annoucement and more winners! 


Brandon has been teaching at Temple University since 2009 and is both a resident theater director and the resident stage director for Temple University Opera Theater. His crossover work with both Boyer School of Music and Dance and TFMA gives him a unique perspective when directing. 


With TU Opera Theater he has directed Turn of the Screw (Britten), L’elisir d’amore (Donizetti), Il Ritorno d’ulisse in patria (Monteverdi), Der schauspieldirektor (Mozart), La Canterina (Hadyn), Trouble in Tahiti (Bernstein), Dido and Aeneas (Purcell), The Merry Widow (Lehar), and Hansel und Gretel (Humperdink). In his direction for the theater department he has recently helmed The Country Wife (Wycherley), Side Show (Russell) and Hit The Wall (Holter). 


He runs both graduate and Undergraduate Opera workshops as well as Cabaret and performance classes -- and produces 6 annual Aria/Scenes program.   Professionally he has directed over 20 productions at Maples Repertory Theater and is an active member of the National Opera Association. 


Also, he is a founding member and Producing Director of Mauckingbird Theater Company (Philadelphia’s professional LGBT theater company).  


So, needless to say, he's always working. If you see him you can definitely congratulate him! And can check out his site


We're so proud to have him at Temple! 



If you're curious... Here's a little more about Charles Nelson Reilly for which the award is named: 

Charles Nelson Reilly was a Tony Award-winning actor and Broadway stage director, and an acclaimed opera director and teacher. Far more than the zany television personality by which he was most often identified, Reilly nurtured the creation of a whole series of unique one-person stage plays. Most famously, he directed Julie Harris in her Tony Award-winning star turn in "The Belle of Amherst", on the life and poetry of Emily Dickinson. Among Reilly's many Broadway directing credits were Ira Levinʼs "Break a Leg", Larry Shueʼs "The Nerd", and the revival of "The Gin Game", starring Julie Harris and Charles Durning, for which Mr. Reilly was the sole American director to be nominated for a Tony in 1997. Mr. Reillyʼs career as an opera director included productions for Chicago Opera Theater, Dallas Opera, San Diego Opera, Palm Beach Opera, Toledo Opera, Milwaukee Opera and Opera Pacific.  Charles Nelson Reilly and The American Prize chief judge David Katz were friends for three decades, first meeting through their mutual Hartford voice teacher, Mrs. Friedrich Schorr. Mr. Reilly served as honorary chairperson of the Friedrich Schorr Memorial Performance Prize in Voice from the competition's founding in 1990, until his death. To read more about the career of Charles Nelson Reilly, please click here.





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