Wednesday, January 28, 2015 Shevat 8, 5775

Michael Elkin

Features Editor
The 'Times,' it's a-changin'
Is "Page One" the new Page Six? With its mix of insider innuendo and rocking revelations, there is a link -- albeit tenuous -- between "Page One," an intriguing investigative independent-movie examination of what makes The New York Times tick, and the gossip page that is the rival New York Post 's celebrity sales pitch. But "Page One: Inside The...
Does Magneto magnetize or stigmatize the hallowed issue of heroics in the Holocaust? Magneto of "X-Men: First Class" is not the first, just the latest, character to jump from the comic book pages to the screen, as he has done in this summer's sizzler of a box-office hit. Born as Max Eisenhardt in the Marvel Comics empire back in 1963...
Israeli group shakes up the notion of what a band can accomplish
Is the Shuk -- with its mantra of "Preserve, Perpetuate and Innovate" -- Israel's sand-dune version of "Survivor"? This Jewish tribe has spoken; more importantly, it's sung. And in the marketplace -- shuk's meaning in Hebrew -- of ideas, this one thrives on sound advice. As leaders of the band, Brooklyn-born Yoni Avital and Cherry Hill's Ami Yares are actually...
Beating a special path to the heart
At an age when I decidedly know better, I decided not to run away with the circus. I became one instead. Father's daze: Keeping up with a 2-year-old is a three-ring juggling act all its own that requires the dexterity of an acrobat with the acumen of a mind-reader. It is also the greatest show on earth. For someone who...
Jennifer Hirsh, you've just won a golden ticket and you're going to ... West Philadelphia? Well, it's 3,000 miles from West Hollywood but it's all in the right direction for the 2009 "American Idol" season wannabe. Hirsh was booted from the Hollywood segment of the TV titan of a reality show two seasons back after winning her "golden ticket" but...


Michael Elkin has worked as the Exponent Arts & Entertainment and Features editors for some 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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