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W. Tom Wheatley

Professor Emeritus

William WheatleyWilliam Tom Wheatley began teaching acting and directing in the Department of Theater in 1973.

A native of New York, Wheatley received his master’s degree in theater from Columbia University in 1956 and his Ph.D. from New York University in 1965. As a student, he was the recipient of two Fulbright scholarships: to Japan in 1963 and Colombia in 1966.

After graduation, he became a member of the Actors Studio in New York, and began his professional career as "Tom Wheatley."

He performed in several Off-Broadway productions, including The Cat and the Canary and Ping Pong. On Broadway, Wheatley appeared in The Shadow of a Gunman and later created the role of Andrew in All the Way Home, alongside Colleen Dewhurst, Lillian Gish and Arthur Hill. Under the direction of Arthur Penn, the production won the Pulitzer Prize and the Tony Award as Best Play of the Year in 1961.

Other credits include performing in New York’s Central Park Shakespeare Festival, and with A.C.T. in San Francisco. In Hollywood, he performed as the "silent Lear" in Robert Wilson's production of King Lear, and worked opposite Burgess Meredith in The Threepenny Opera. He also directed and performed in the London Fringe Theater Festival.