Friday, October 9, 2015 Tishri 26, 5776

Michael Elkin

A public relations executive with Comcast-Spectacor finds a wet and wild way to celebrate his anniversary with the company; a retired ophthalmologist turns his eye to the integration of art, science and medicine; and a Philadelphia native has been named winner of the Israel Prize, that nation's most prominent award.
It was an evening on behalf of State of Israel Bonds, in which the Medical Professions gathering logged in a record-breaking sale of $2.5 million in bonds. Part of the evening’s attraction was a bifold Bonds honor: Husband-and-wife doctors Gary Emmett and Marianne Ruby (above) were feted for their excellence as professionals and humanitarians.
Members of the Freezer 5K committee make a post-run announcement that funds raised from the second annual Horsham benefit race, held last month, will go to the St. Vincent de Paul Society for families in need in Horsham Township. From left are Ann Marie Mangin, Gary Chamberlain, Ted Taylor, Jon Waxman, Jodi Hallen, Lt. Jon Clark of the Horsham Police...
A New Jersey couple, chosen last year as Mitzvah Heroes, are wed even as they continue to battle the groom's rare bowel disease.
Jewish Heritage Programs hosted a pong tournament benefitting the Jewish Relief Agency.


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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