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Legendary UE Theater Director Dies

John David Lutz

Famed Director John David Lutz was 83

A giant in the Evansville theater and arts community has died. WNIN's David James reports:

Director, actor and professor John David Lutz died over the weekend. He's being remembered for his 50-year career at the University of Evansville.

Under Lutz' direction, the theater program gained national recognition and there's a long list of current and former theater professionals who regarded Lutz as one of their mentors.

Among them, noted TV and film director Matt Williams who came to Evansville earlier this year to dedicate a theater lab on campus in honor of Lutz:

"You have across the country in regional theaters, on Broadway, off Broadway, in TV and film, U of E graduates. Either on the stage, directing, acting, behind the stage, managing theatres, stage managing. It's pretty astounding that this small department has turned out so many working professionals. And it's interesting the very first play I ever saw at Shanklin Theater was Hamlet. I was in high school at Reitz. Eva Kenard brought the drama class to Shanklin to see Hamlet starring John David Lutz. That John David Lutz impact I was talking about, it's always there."

John David Lutz was 83 years old.