Entertainment and creative arts industries have a vast reach on American culture and society, spanning a diverse range of career opportunities. This industry brings in alumni with backgrounds from a variety of different fields. From film & media production to theater and American poetry, there are professionals who have drawn from their experiences at UChicago to make their mark on media, television, the silver screen, the stage, and beyond. Alumni will share their experiences about how they took advantage of their UChicago experiences and refined the skills they accrued from their education to ones they now use in the work force.
Andrew Cutler, AB'12
Instructor/Associate Artistic Director, Black Box Acting/First Floor Theater
Andrew Cutler graduated from the University of Chicago in 2012. While still at the University, he co-founded First Floor Theater, where he still serves as Associte Artistic Director. He also attended the Academy at Black Box, and subsequently was hired as an Instructor there, where he still teaches in both the Studio and the Academy. As an actor, Andrew has appeared onstage at Actors Theatre of Louisville, A Red Orchid Theatre, The Artistic Home, many productions with First Floor Theater, and several other theaters in Chicago.
Dorothea Duenow, AB'99
Ms. Emery graduated from the College in 1999 with a degree in English Literature. As a student, she was heavily involved with University Theater and performed in various musical groups. After graduating, she continued writing, acting, and performing and then formed her first band, DUENOW, signed to United For Opportunity records. ["If You Could Only See What They Are Doing to You" Sound Records, 2003, and "The Draft LP" UFO, 2006.] In 2015, she began her current musical project, MUSE WRANGLER, and is currently touring in support of her latest album, "Songs of Spring and Regeneration." She continues to act and teach dance and offers creative coaching to young artists and performers through The Heron Project, an online collective of artists from all genres encouraging the pursuit of creative vision and the artistic lifestyle.
David Goodman, AB'84, AB'84
Mr. Goodman graduated from the College with a degree in political science. After a short stint in book publishing, he started writing, and was soon hired as a staff writer on The Golden Girls. Since then, he has written for 20 television series, including American Dad, Futurama, and Star Trek: Enterprise, as well as Family Guy, where he's worked on and off for the last eighteen years, six of them as head writer and Executive Producer. He is currently Executive Producer and a writer on "The Orville", Seth MacFarlane's one-hour drama/comedy for Fox . He is also the author of three Star Trek related books, "Federation: the First 150 Years", "The Autobiography of James T. Kirk", and "The Autobiography of Jean-Luc Picard." He is currently President of the Writers Guild of America West.
Edmund O'Brien, AB'93
Teaching Artist, Storycatchers Theatre/Second City Training Center
Mr. O'Brien graduated from the College in 1993 with a degree in History and a year spent at UCL in London. He wrote sketches and improvised with Off-Off Campus. He performed weekly for nine years with his troupe Sheila at Jimmy's and on WHPK. Mr. O'Brien wrote twisted trivia for Jellyvision's "You Don't Know Jack" before spending seven years in LA writing for various TV shows, such as Streets Smarts and MTV's Undressed. He also taught improv and performed in ACME Comedy Theatre's improv and sketch companies. He returned to Chicago and began teaching improv, writing and songwriting at The Second City. He currently improvises with his wife and fellow OOC alumna, Dana, in Sheila's Sister and spends most of his working hours with Storycatchers Theatre, where he helps incarcerated and recently paroled youth write and perform original musicals inspired by personal stories.
Lucas Wiesendanger, AB'07, MA Sociology 2010 (Yale)
Vice President, Red Wagon Entertainment
Lucas graduated from the College in 2007 with a degree in Sociology. While at U of C, he was part of the circus group Le Vorris and Vox and volunteered with Doc Films. He entered a PhD program in Sociology at Yale, but left after a few years to move to Hollywood. After a several years stint at the Gersh agency, he moved to Red Wagon Entertainment where he is now Vice President under producers Doug Wick and Lucy Fisher. His focus is on developing and producing wide-release feature films.