Richard Roland, 1991
B.F.A., Denison University
M.F.A., Pennsylvania State University
Performer; Director; Broadway Veteran; Assistant Professor of Musical Theatre, Director of the B.F.A. Musical Theatre Program
B.F.A., Denison University
Richard Roland is a fourth-generation performer and a third-generation Broadway veteran, having appeared on Broadway in “Thoroughly Modern Millie,” “The Scarlet Pimpernel,” and “Follies.” He also has appeared in national tours of “Titanic “and “… Millie.” Off-Broadway audiences saw him in “Zombie Prom,” “Forever Plaid,” “The Fantasticks,” and “The Cocoanuts.”
Among his regional performing credits are “La Cage aux Folles,” “The Who’s Tommy,” “West Side Story,” “Damn Yankees,” “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,” “Cabaret,” “The Sound of Music,” “Shenandoah,” and “Mame.” He played Jason Sheffield on television’s “All My Children” and has appeared in several television commercials. A vocal arranger, as well, Richard founded and directed the jazz vocal group Monday Off, co-produced two CDs, and toured all over North America, playing many clubs in New York, as well as Carnegie Hall.
Richard’s directing credits include “The Secret Garden,” “110 in the Shade,” “Brigadoon,” “A Christmas Carol,” “Dogfight,” “Working,” “Forever Plaid,” “Barefoot in the Park,” “Souvenir,” “Urinetown,” “Avenue Q,” “God of Carnage” (Raleigh Indy Week, Best Director), “Hairspray,” “Ragtime” (N.H. Theatre Awards, Best Direction of a Musical), “Dear Ruth,” “No Way to Treat a Lady,” “Grease,” “Thoroughly Modern Millie,” “Chicago,” “Steel Magnolias,” and “Metamorphoses.” He served as associate director of the New York City première of “Vanities: A New Musical” and the Danish première of “Story of My Life.” He also served as associate artistic director at Theatre Raleigh and is currently associate artistic director for Indiana University Summer Theatre.
Richard holds a B.F.A. in theatre from Denison and an M.F.A. in directing from Penn State, where he also served on the School of Theatre faculty. At PSU, he taught Audition Technique, Theatre History, Musical Theatre History/Form and Function, and an Actors’ Equity Association “29-Hour Reading” class. He also was an adjunct faculty member and directed at the University of West Florida. At Indiana University, he teaches Acting, Musical Theatre Form & Function, Audition Techniques, Musical Theatre History, Business of the Business, Directing for Musical Theatre, and four different levels of Musical Theatre Studio classes. Richard has taught master classes on audition technique and acting the song in New York, nationally, and abroad.
As a student at Denison, Richard was a member of Burpee’s Seedy Theatrical Company improvisational comedy troupe and the Denison Concert Choir.
Some of his favorite memories of being at Denison were working on the productions of “Company” and “On the Verge” and, of course, the MDA Dance Marathons!
Richard’s mother and grandfather are also Denison Alums: Lispet Nelson (née Mary Elizabeth Taylor) ’57, and Edward Taylor ’16. Richard and his husband, Raymond Sage, (and their two Labrador retrievers, Finn and Millie) spend a lot of time traveling between Bloomington, Ind., and State College, Pa., where Raymond is an associate professor of voice for musical theatre and head of the Vocal Pedagogy Master’s Degree program.