Carnegie Mellon University
May 28, 2019

CMU Alumnae Play Powerful Roles on Broadway

By Erin Keane Scott

Pam Wigley
  • College of Fine Arts
  • 412-268-1047
Jason Maderer
  • Marketing & Communications
  • 412-268-1151

Broadway experienced an unexpected first last fall: an all-female creative team assembled by alumna Leigh Silverman, mounted a production of "The Lifespan of a Fact" by journalist John D'Agatta.

"I feel it is our responsibility as we gain power and any kind of platform, that we continue to widen the road as we go," said Silverman, a 1996 CMU graduate. "This is my fourth Broadway show and I felt it was important to include, as I have throughout my career, women and people of color, and put them in positions of power."

This year, three alumnae from Carnegie Mellon University — producer Jamie deRoy, costume designer Ann Roth and lighting designer Peggy Eisenhauer — have received nine Tony Award nominations. Additionally, alumna Judith Light will receive the 2019 Isabelle Stevenson Award for her work as an advocate for LGBTQIA+ causes.

"My experience of being a woman working on Broadway has been nothing short of extraordinary, amazing in every way," Judith Light said. "These people and these casts and this productions — it’s beyond words how much love and faith and support I’ve received."

Numerous CMU alumnae are making their marks on Broadway, and as a part of CMU's annual celebration of the Tony Awards, we've reached out to several of them to learn about what inspires them, what tools they still use from their CMU training, and what advice they have for students following in their footsteps.

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