Broadway Star in the Spotlight @ UHD
Hamilton’s Josh Tower Inspires Future Thespians
By Sheryl E. Taylor
There’s never a dull moment in the world of theatre—or for that matter, on the UHD campus.
Timothy Klein, Associate Professor of Drama, invited Broadway star Josh Tower to campus for a Q&A session with his students in Drama 1304-Acting II class.
Tower is on tour with the multi-award-winning “Hamilton,” which is playing at Houston’s Hobby Center through March 20. Tower plays pivotal character and villain Aaron Burr—the man who killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel in 1804.
Klein and Tower’s 25-plus-year friendship began in the ’90s during graduate school at the University of Carolina at Chapel Hill. During their grad stint, they participated in numerous productions, so Klein seized on the opportunity to invite Tower to one of his classes.
“I want my students to experience that there’s a larger world outside of UHD,” said the Director of O’Kane Theatre. “This unique opportunity to share a space with a Broadway star is truly special. And I’m so glad that Josh said ‘yes!’”
UHD student Jordan Martinez, a senior who is graduating in May 2022 with a Bachelor’s in Interdisciplinary Studies (with concentrations in Drama and Psychology), participated in the Q&A sesh with his fellow students.
“I’ve always wanted to study acting,” said the 28-year-old. “I love the classes with Professor Klein, especially the one on realism … it’s not easy, but it’s worth the work.”
For Tower, taking time away from the stage to inspire future thespians is a natural fit.
“It’s important to inspire the next generation of theatrical professionals,” Tower said. “It’s really cool to have the opportunity to share my story and experiences that may pull one or two individuals into this business.”
The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD)—the second-largest university in Houston—has served the educational needs of the nation’s fourth-largest city since 1974.
As one of four distinct public universities in the University of Houston System, UHD is a comprehensive four-year university led by President Loren J. Blanchard. Annually, UHD educates more than 15,000 students; boasts more than 60,000 alumni and offers 45 bachelor’s, nine master’s degree programs and 16 fully online programs within five colleges (Marilyn Davies College of Business; Humanities & Social Sciences; Public Service; Sciences & Technology; and University College).
For the fourth consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report ranks UHD among universities across the nation for Best Online Criminal Justice Programs (No. 27 and No. 15 for Veterans) and Best Online Bachelor’s Programs.
UHD has the most affordable tuition among four-year universities in Houston and one of the lowest in Texas. U.S. News ranked the University among Top Performers on Social Mobility and a No. 1 ranking as the most diverse institution of higher education in the southern region of the U.S. The University is noted nationally as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, Minority-Serving Institution and Military Friendly School. For more on the University of Houston-Downtown, visit www.uhd.edu.