UAB Department of Theatre alumnus Patrick Johnson was recently elected Vice-President of City Equity Theatre, Birmingham's sole professional theatre operating under agreement with Actors' Equity Association.
CET was established in 2006 by another Theatre UAB alumnus, Alan Gardner, Director of Theatre Arts at Vestavia Hills High School, with Jonathan Fuller, Artistic Director of Theatre Arts at the Alabama School of Fine Arts and former adjunct professor with Theatre UAB.
Says Fuller, "Patrick is really the embodiment of the professional standard UAB's Department of Theatre puts out. Not only is he an excellent actor, but his assumption of duties as stage manager and director for our productions demonstrate a great, broad-based, in-depth knowledge of the theatre. He has been one of the most pro-active, collaborative, and creative stage managers I have worked with in all my travels doing regional theatre."
Patrick has a long history in Birmingham-area theatre, having appeared onstage at Birmingham Festival Theatre, Terrific New Theatre, Theatre Downtown, Birmingham Children's Theatre, and Town & Gown Theatre. In the past year, he has served as stage manager for BCT's national tour of "Sacagawea," CET's "Superior Donuts," and directed UAB classmate Alan Gardner in CET's production of "The Sea Horse." Currently he is working as stage manager for CET's upcoming production of "Ruined" by Lynn Nottage, co-directed by Jonathan Fuller and UAB assistant professor of Theatre Cheryl Hall; this summer, he will return to the stage in the role of Steve Heidebrecht in CET's production of Tracy Letts' Pultizer-winning drama "August: Osage County."
"I'm a big fan of Theatre UAB and its insistence on turning out well-rounded graduates," says Johnson. "I was an acting/directing student, but for more than decade I took a break from performing and worked exclusively in technical theatre--swinging hammers, slinging paint, throwing cues, designing sound. I wouldn't have had the chops to do those things if it hadn't been for UAB's program and faculty."
City Equity Theatre's mission is to enrich the cultural life of our community by providing opportunity, experience, and education for professional and aspiring theatre artists; providing artistic and professional leadership for Birmingham's rich theatre community; and expanding the presence of Actors' Equity Association in the region for the benefit of Birmingham's theatre professionals.