Oscar, Tony and Emmy Award-Winning Designer/Director Comes to JMU

Oscar, Tony and Emmy Award-Winning Designer/Director Comes to JMU

More than 100 students will have the opportunity to learn from the legend in the entertainment world. Walton will visit eight theatre classrooms during his four-day residency at JMU.

Walton earned his first Oscar nomination for Best Costume Design in Walt Disney’s “Mary Poppins,” a film starring his then-wife, Julie Andrews. Walton made quite an impression on JMU theatre professor, Rebecca Lustig, who worked with Walton in New York. “I was lucky to have Tony as my mentor for almost 10 years. He is a wonderful teacher … the opportunity for our students to learn from a world-class designer is tremendous.”

In addition to “Mary Poppins,” Walton’s credits include the film designs of “All That Jazz” (Academy Award winner: Best Art Direction), “The Wiz” (Academy Award nominations: Best Costume Design and Best Art Direction) and “Murder on the Orient Express” (Academy Award nomination: Best Costume Design). He won an Emmy for his Art Direction of “Death of a Salesman.” He has also won three Tony awards (nominated 16 times). He was inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame in 1991 and received the Art Director’s Guild Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012.

Walton’s theatre and film works have included collaborations with Harold Prince, Bob Fosse, Nöel Coward, Mike Nichols, Sidney Lumet, Jerome Robbins, Stephen Sondheim, Walt Disney, Ken Russell, Nora Ephron, Paul Newman, Peter Shaffer, Nathan Lane, Tommy Tune, Sammy Davis, Jr., Diana Ross, Twiggy, Patti Lupone, Michael Jackson, Robin Williams, Bill Irwin, Steve Martin, Linda Ronstadt, Bette Midler, Whoopi Goldberg, Ben Vereen, Vanessa Redgrave, Julie Christie, Laura Linney. He recently directed Alec Baldwin in a production of “Equus.”

In his latest project, Walton designed both sets and costumes for a new production, “The Great American Mousical the Musical,” directed by Julie Andrews based on the book co-written by Andrews and their daughter, Emma Walton Hamilton (illustrated by Walton).

Contact Jen Kulju, public relations coordinator at the Forbes Center, at (540) 568-4394 or by e-mail at kuljuja@jmu.edu for further information.

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