John has directed the West Coast premieres of Borderlands, an original play about Bosnia, which was a Best Pick in the LA Weekly and Fortune’s Fools at the McCadden Theater in Hollywood, also a Best Pick and for which he won a Dramalogue Award. He directed One Grimm Evening at the Odyssey Theatre as well as What I Heard About Iraq by Simon Levy, which performed on college campuses, in theaters and performing arts centers in New York, California, Washington State, Montreal and at the LaMama Theatre in Manhattan. He has acted Off-B’Way at the former Ubu Rep, at the Victory Gardens Theatre in Chicago, The Odyssey and Fountain Theatre in Los Angeles and Shakespeare Orange County as well as television and film roles. He’s a proud member of Actor’s Equity and SAG/AFTRA.
He wrote and directed the award-winning film Children of the Struggle, which was shown in film festivals across the country, on PBS station KQED for three years to commemorate Black History Month, and is seen in high schools and colleges nationwide. It was also recognized by the NAACP Film Commission for its “true and poignant portrayal of the fight for black voting rights”.
He is certified by Ivana Chubbuck to teach her approach to acting, an acting technique used by award-winning actors Brad Pitt, Halle Berry, Charlize Theron, Jim Carrey, Jake Gyllenhaal, among many others.
In 2007, John approached Andrew Carroll about the possibility of a play based on Carroll’s collection of war letters. Three years later he directed the premiere of If All the Sky Were Paper by Andrew Carroll (video) at Chapman University. In 2013 he was awarded a prestigious National Endowment for the Arts grant, as well as a Cal Humanities grant to bring the play to a wider audience. Since then, together they have taken the play to Seattle Rep, the WAMC Linda Performing Arts Studio in Albany, NY, The Lobero Theatre in Santa Barbara, The Martha’s Vineyard Performing Arts Center, The Kirk Douglas Theatre in Los Angeles twice and the Kennedy Center Terrace Theatre in Washington, DC. Annette Bening, Laura Dern, Gary Cole, Mary Steenburgen, Peter Strauss, Ken Howard, Common and Brad Hall are only a few of the actors he has had the pleasure to direct as part of this production.