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Penn State Theatre Professor Elected to Board of University/Resident Theatre Association

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Steve Broadnax (left) directs actors in 'Blood at the Root'

Steve Broadnax, head of Penn State’s M.F.A. Acting program and accomplished actor and director, has been elected to the University/Resident Theatre Association (URTA) Board of Directors for a three-year term.

The URTA Board of Directors consists of six directors and four officers elected from member schools, with elections conducted in the fall. The board has responsibility for the governance of the association and, as a collection of experts in the areas of theatre and theatre training, has considerable influence in guiding URTA’s ongoing services and new programs. URTA is the nation's largest association of professional, graduate (M.F.A.) theatre training programs and related professional theatre companies, consisting of 39 influential universities (38 in the United States and 1 in the United Kingdom), and 15 partnered theatre companies.

Broadnax, who holds an M.F.A. in acting from Penn State, has conceived, written and directed a number of plays, including Smash/Hit!, The Hip Hop Project and American Taboo. The Hip Hop Project was showcased at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, while American Taboo was performed as part of bestselling author J.L. King’s national tour to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS and homosexuality in the black community. Broadnax also recently directed the new play Blood at the Root, which was commissioned for Penn State graduate actors and has toured internationally to critical acclaim.

As a member of Actors’ Equity Association, Broadnax toured nationally and internationally in more than 20 shows over a five-year period. He has worked in theatres such as St. Louis Black Rep, St. Louis Repertory Theatre, St. Louis Muny, Lincoln Amphitheatre, Westport Playhouse and Ozark Actors Theatre. Before coming to Penn State, he was head of the John McLinn Ross Theatre Program at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff.

Broadnax was elected to the URTA Board of Directors by a unanimous vote, along with Jacob Pinholster, director of the School of Film, Dance and Theatre at Arizona State University’s Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts. Alexander Gellman, director of the School of Theatre and Dance at Northern Illinois University and the producing artistic director of the Organic Theatre Company, was unanimously re-elected as URTA’s treasurer for another two-year term. “This unanimity indicates the depth of support for Jacob, Steve and Alex. URTA members expect—and appreciate—the considerable investment of time, effort and care made by colleagues serving on the board,” said URTA Executive Director Scott Steele.

For more on URTA, visit