Award-winning directors and outsider musicals

Earlier this week, the Stage Directors and Choreographers Foundation announced that Ron OJ Parson was the recipient of its annual Zelda Fichandler Award, named for one of the pioneers of regional theater in the US, founding Washington DC’s Arena Stage in 1950.

As for Parson, he’s one of those actors/directors who has helped build Chicago into one of the nation’s most vibrant theater communities.

Parson is also the guy who directed Ensemble Theater Cincinnati’s long-awaited production of Dominique Morisseau’s “Pipeline.” That was the show that opened March 11, 2020, only to close the following evening, Cincinnati theater’s first notable victim of the COVID pandemic. Fortunately, ETC producing artistic D. Lynn Meyers is a patient person. She left the “Pipeline” set on the stage. And when pandemic numbers decreased, the show completed its run – 18 months after its scheduled engagement.

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