IMTAL 2013 Keynote Discussions

Roscoe Orman

Roscoe Orman, best known for his many years as Gordon on “Sesame Street," has had a long and distinguished career on stage, film, and television. A Bronx native, Mr. Orman was an early member of the Free Southern Theater in New Orleans and a founding member of Harlem's New Lafayette Theatre, where he acted in and directed many plays, including Who's Got His Own, We Righteous Bombers, The Duplex, The Devil Catchers, and The Fabulous Miss Marie. Additional stage work includes The Great McDaddy, The Sirens, Every Night When the Sun Goes Down, The Last Street Play, Julius Caesar, Coriolanus, The Sixteenth Round, Confessions of Stepin Fetchit, Do Lord Remember Me, Driving Miss Daisy, Fences, The Talented Tenth, and many others. He most recently performed the role of Becker in August Wilson's Jitney at Baltimore's Murphy Fine Arts Center.

Mr. Orman's films include the title role of Willie Dynamite and also FX, Follow That Bird, Striking Distance, New Jersey Drive, Twilight’s Last Gleaming, Adventures of Elmo In Grouchland, Drive-by, 30 Days, and “Jeremy Fink and The Meaning of Life." On television, he has also been seen on "Sanford & Son", "Kojak", "All My Children", "A Man Called Hawk", "Hard Time on Planet Earth", "Law & Order", "Law & Order SVU", "Sex In The City", "The Wire", and "Cosby."

As a voice-over artist, Orman has narrated many audio books, commercials, and documentary films for PBS, Discovery Channel, ESPN, National Geographic, and others. He is the author of two books, Sesame Street Dad: Evolution of An Actor and Ricky & Mobo. More information about his life and career can be found at


PJ Powers

PJ Powers was a co-founder of Chicago’s TimeLine Theatre Company in 1997 and became Artistic Director in 1999. He has overseen the production of more than 55 productions, including nine world premieres and 18 Chicago premieres. TimeLine has garnered 48 Jeff Awards, including nine for Outstanding Production and one award for PJ as an Actor. During PJ’s tenure, TimeLine also launched the TimePieces play reading series and the Living History Educational Outreach Program in Chicago Public Schools. TimeLine was heralded as the country’s “Company of the year” by the Wall Street Journal in 2010, named 2011 “Best Theatre” by Chicago Magazine, and most recently was named “one of the nation’s top 10 most promising emerging professional theatres” in 2011 by the American Theatre Wing. TimeLine has also been recognized in the industry with the 2006 Alford-Axelson Award for Nonprofit Managerial Excellence of a small company and the 2009 Richard Goodman Strategic Planning Award in the Non-profit category from the Association for Strategic Planning (ASP).  PJ has appeared as an actor on stage in 17 productions at TimeLine and at other Chicago theatres. He is a proud recipient of the 2008 Meier Achievement Award for mid-career artists.