Thursday, December 8, 2016 Kislev 8, 5777

Michael Elkin

Perchance to dream … No, everyone was wide awake at this fun Pajama-rama held for kids by Har Zion Temple at Top This in Narberth. Storytime featuring Jewish tales was led by Rabbi Nogah Marshall (in the Elmo getup), the temple’s educational director.
The Hebrew Free Loan Society gets ready to mark its 30th anniversary with a salute to its founders; an acclaimed former area schoolteacher and principal turns his efforts to a new book to assist adults struggling with literacy; and an internationally prominent flutist celebrates a decade of her Philadelphia music ensemble.
The Lasting Legacy Award dinner benefitting Green Tree School & Services left a lasting impression on the 300-plus members of the crowd gathered to fete Stephen Harmelin of Dilworth Paxson. Not only did the attorney receive the first Legacy Award but he and his wife, Julia (right), announced the establishment of the Stephen and Julia Harmelin Fund for the Arts...
The musical Lockheed Martin engineer from Newtown was instrumental in the development of the satellite systems that were antecedents to GPS.
The Friends of the IDF Pennsylvania/Southern N.J. Chapter and Congregation Beth Or’s Israel Committee are presenting a tribute to lone soldiers and parents from the region in September.


Michael Elkin worked for the Jewish Exponent for over 40 years.

He has won some 40 national and regional writing awards over his career as well as three fellowships in playwriting and screenwriting from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts.

His arts articles — including working as a jazz critic for the Evening and Sunday Bulletin; book reviewer for the Philadelphia Inquirer; and rock reviewer/TV writer for the Camden Courier-Post  — and op-eds have appeared throughout North America; his plays have been staged internationally, including runs in Romania — one play running for  five years —  Israel, Germany, Los Angeles and, locally, the Walnut Street Theatre and People's Light and Theatre Company. He is a  Tony Award voter and is a member of a national new play selection committee handing out an annual award to an  up-and-coming playwright.

He worked as a mentor with the Philadelphia Young Playwrights' outreach program to area high schools and at one point headed up the playwriting program at the Walnut Street Theatre School.  His play "Cries in the Night" was cited in the book "The Best Plays of 1992-93," in the "New Plays From Around the Country" category. His travel articles have appeared nationally and he has worked as a travel editor for Fodor's Travel Guides.

As a screenwriter, he  was asked by filmmaker John Frankenheimer ("Birdman of Alcatraz," "The Manchurian Candidate"), with whom he then worked,  to write a script for Frankenheimer to direct.

He has moderated and taken part in national conferences both here and in New York on topics ranging from hip-hop/rap to theater to comedy and has served as a board member of film and theater arts groups.

Elkin has appeared on area TV and radio shows and served as arts critic for the cable program "Our Town." He has been cited in reference books for his investigative work on TV as an influential social medium. For his expertise in film and theater, Elkin was asked to — and did — serve as on-screen interviewer of actor Richard Dreyfuss in a documentary about the American Music Theater Festival, with which Dreyfuss was involved.

A graduate of Temple University — he also studied screenwriting at New York University and attended the University of Houston Bates School of Law — Elkin was honored to be Temple's commencement speaker in the mid-90s. He also taught journalism at Temple as well as screenwriting at La Salle University.

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