Nationally known alumnus visits campus to talk about show business - Dec 14, 2012 - Communicating Arts Department - UW-Superior News and Events

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Nationally known alumnus visits campus to talk about show business

Posted on Dec 14, 2012
A nationally known theatre alumnus offers practical advice to students.
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Rick Sordelet talks to student and faculty during an informal session in the Black Box Theater.

Rick Sordelet talks to student and faculty during an informal session in the Black Box Theater.

It's always good to get advice from an expert, and that's what UW-Superior students got Thursday, Dec. 13, when alumnus Rick Sordelet dropped by to talk about show business.

Sordelet is a veteran of University Theatre who graduated in 1982. Since then he's built a career as a nationally known fight director and choreographer. In short, his job is to help actors put on a good fight without actually hurting anybody.

Sordelet was in town to speak at UW-Superior's Commencement Ceremony on Dec. 15. He took time to talk informally with a group of theatre students and faculty about his days on campus and how he got his start in fight choreography from working with Dr. Al Katz, a UW-Superior professor who was a pioneer in the art form.

He also had an opportunity to meet again with retired professors John Munsell and Stewart Platner, who were key members of the Communicating Arts Department and University Theatre during Sordelet's years on campus.

Sordelet spent a lot of time offering practical advice to students who are interested in pursuing acting, directing and other career fields. He covered everything from making connections with key people to saving money while working for that first big break.

Among his numerous credits, Sordelet has worked on more than 50 Broadway productions and several Hollywood movies. He has staged fight scenes for the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, The Royal Opera House in London, and La Scala in Milan, along with 84 different productions of "Romeo and Juliet" and 66 different productions of "Hamlet." He is the only fight director to stage a battle for a Super Bowl halftime show.

Earlier this year the UW-Superior Alumni Association presented him with its Distinguished Alumnus Award. The award is presented annually to an alumnus whose success serves as an inspiration for current and prospective students.

Sordelet holds a master of fine arts degree from Rutgers University. He teaches at The New School for Drama and The Neighborhood Playhouse, both in New York City, and the Yale School of Drama. He is a board member for The Shakespeare Theater of New Jersey, and author of the play "Buried Treasure."

News Contact: Al Miller | 715-394-8260 | amiller{atuws}
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