Herman D. Farrell III

Associate Professor of Theatre

Herman Daniel Farrell III is a Chellgren Professor and Associate Professor in the Department of Theatre & Dance. He received his B.A., cum laude, in Drama from Vassar College in 1983, his J.D. from New York University School of Law in 1989 and his M.F.A. in Playwriting from Columbia University in 1994.

Farrell was co-writer of the award winning (Peabody, AFI, NAACP Image Awards) and critically acclaimed HBO Film Boycott about Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott of 1955 (starring Jeffrey Wright and Terrence Howard). Farrell was nominated for a Humanitas Prize.

Farrell's essay “The Ancient Mariner and O’Neill’s Intertextual Epiphany” was published in 2012 by McFarland Publishing in a book of essays: Intertextuality in American Drama: Critical Essays on Eugene O'Neill, Susan Glaspell, Thornton Wilder and Arthur Miller and Other Playwrights, edited by Brenda Murphy and Drew Eisenhauer and Farrell recently completed an Artist in Residency Travis Bogard Fellowhip at Tao House, the Eugene O’Neill National Historic Site in Danville, California where he completed the first draft of his new play, Journey.

Play productions: civilian, 2011 New York International Fringe Festival; Rome, 2004 New York International Fringe Festival; Portrait of a President, 2002 New York International Fringe Festival (Excellence in Playwriting Award); Solo Goya, Lincoln Center’s Director’s Lab at HERE (NY 1998), Bedfellows, The Flea Theater (NY 1997), The Echo Theater Company (LA 1996) (Drama-Logue Award & Critic’s Choice).

His plays have been developed in workshops and readings at Manhattan Theater Club, Crossroads Theater Company, Primary Stages, The Working Theater, New Dramatists and The Eugene O’Neill Theater Center National Playwrights Conference. Farrell’s work has been recognized and honored by several national arts institutions: New Dramatists (Member Playwright 1995-2002, Joe Calloway Award); NEA Grant (To Mandela at The Working Theater 1998); NEA Grant (There at Primary Stages 1996); MacDowell Colony (Fellow 1996); 1994, 1995 & 1999 National Playwrights Conference (Bedfellows, Brodkin Scholarship Award, There, 1st Eric Kocher Playwriting Award and Memorial Day).  

Farrell recently completed Cousins Table, a family drama that was presented in a reading at New Dramatists in December 2014 and a short commissioned work for the American Slavery Project called Assento as part of the Writing Collaborative of Unheard Voices, a theatrical response to the African Burial Ground in lower Manhattan. Excerpts from the work received a staged reading in May of 2012 at the Malcolm X and Betty Shabazz Cultural Center in NYC.

Farrell is the former Kentucky Regional Representative for the Dramatists Guild of America and a member of the Eugene O'Neill Society.