History Highlight

Published on 12 July 2022

With the enthusiastic support of President Charles Rabe and Dean Byron A. Barnes, John Grotpeter, Ph.D., a professor of politics and history, began staging regular theater productions on campus. Because there was  no physical theater on campus until 1994, the  productions were performed in room 221 in the main academic building.

In 1968, University of Health Sciences and Pharmacy in  St. Louis put on its first production, Neil Simon’s “Barefoot in the Park,” for two nights with a full set. Before long, students were approaching Grotpeter asking about the possibility of producing two or three shows a year. After Grotpeter’s passing in 1993, Joan Hanson, Ph.D., professor of communications, carried the torch forward and became the first director to stage musicals and plays in Whelpley Auditorium.

In 2007, Tim Moylan, Ph.D., professor of English, took the helm as director of the theater program at the University. Under Moylan’s direction, and with the support and collaboration of Tristan Frampton, Ph.D., assistant professor and director of music activities, the University’s theater program has thrived. With remarkable sets, talented students, engaged faculty and staff and an earnest love of the arts, the University has become the institution of choice for students who are passionate about health care and feel the call of the stage.

Learn more about theater at University of Health Sciences and Pharmacy in St. Louis at uhsp.edu/theater.


This story was first published in the spring 2022 issue of Script Magazine. To view past issues of Script, visit the Script Magazine archive.

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