William Russell’s plays have been produced in Manhattan; Brooklyn; Woodstock, NY; Norwalk, CT; and Los Angeles. Russell’s play, The Journey, produced at Westbeth, was directed by Lawrence Sacharow, director of the premier production of Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women. Along with playwrights Jean Claude van Itallie, Megan Terry, and Murray Mednick, Russell contributed a short play to Sacharow’s production of Tabula Rasa, which was produced at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Sacharow also directed Russell’s two character play The Major General’s Memoirs, with George Bartenieff and Marta Heflin, produced at Theatre for the New City in Manhattan and River Arts Repertory in Woodstock, New York.
For several years, Russell was an actor/writer member of the avant-garde theatre troupe,Quena Company. Quena created and performed theatre pieces at many venues, includingTheatre Genesis, the Nuyorican Poets’ Café, the Baltimore Theatre Project, and in colleges and prisons throughout the Northeast. Russell wrote and performed Uncle Bridgewater and Tom, a play about Oklahoma cowboys, produced in Los Angeles at Theater/Theatre. He adapted Fulltime Active, a performance piece based on oral histories from the Community Documentation Project at Saint Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery; performed at Saint Mark’s and New York University. His poetry and songs have been included in special “Vigil” services at Saint Mark’s as well.
Russell has had play readings at The Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine in Manhattan; Northern Westchester Center for the Arts in Mount Kisco, New York; and theTheatre Artists’ Workshop in Norwalk, Connecticut.
As a writer/actor member of Theatre Artists Workshop, Russell’s work has been included in the Workshop’s productions of the Playwrights’ One-Act Festival; the WOW Festival; Songs and Stories; and New York State of Mind, among others. He collaborated with Eric Blau (creator of Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris) on Remembering Eye -- a theatre piece based on Blau’s poetry, published as Collected Works. Russell was asked to do a screenplay adaptation of Upton Sinclair’s last novel, Affectionately Eve. The completed screenplay, not yet produced, has been well received. BACK