Edwin Sherin

Edwin Sherin (January 15, 1930 – May 4, 2017) was an American theatre and television director and producer.[1] Sherin's wife was actress Jane Alexander and his stepson was the similarly dubbed Jace Alexander, with whom he collaborated on the television legal drama/police procedural Law & Order on thirty-two (32) separate occasions. He directed many episodes of the television drama Law & Order, as well as directed for the stage, mainly on Broadway, including The Great White Hope, which starred Alexander in both the theater and film versions.[2][3] Additional members of his family included the actress Maddie Corman, his stepson Jace's current wife.

Edwin Sherin
Born(1930-01-15)January 15, 1930
DiedMay 4, 2017(2017-05-04) (aged 87)
CitizenshipAmerican, Canadian
OccupationActor, director, producer
Years active1971–2009
Jane Alexander (m. 1975)


Born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania,[4] He began his theatrical career as an actor, playing small roles on Broadway in Face of a Hero and Romulus, among others.[5]

He met Alexander while serving as the resident director at Washington, DC's Arena Stage, where he cast her and James Earl Jones in The Great White Hope. In 1968, he directed the play and its two stars on Broadway,[6] and the production marked the start not only of his Broadway directorial career, but a long professional and personal relationship with Alexander as well.

He directed Alexander in The First Monday in October on Broadway in 1978,[7] Hedda Gabler at the Hartman Theatre (Connecticut) in 1981[8] in the American Playhouse television movie A Marriage: Georgia O'Keeffe and Alfred Stieglitz, in 1991.[9] and in the Broadway revival of The Visit.[10]

While working at the Arena Stage, Sherin directed many plays, including The Wall (1963–1964), Galileo (1964–1965), St. Joan (1965–1966), Macbeth (1966–1967), The Iceman Cometh (1967–1968), and King Lear (1968–1969).[11]

Sherin won the 1969 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Director for The Great White Hope[12] and was nominated for a 1974 Tony Award for Best Direction of a Play (Find Your Way Home).

The Time of Your Life was revived in March 17, 1972 at the Huntington Hartford Theater in Los Angeles where Henry Fonda, Richard Dreyfuss, Ron Thompson, Strother Martin. Jane Alexander, Richard X. Slattery, Lewis J. Stadlen and Pepper Martin were among the cast with Sherin directing.[13][14]

In 1974, Sherin directed a revival of A Streetcar Named Desire at London's Piccadilly Theatre with Claire Bloom, Martin Shaw, Joss Ackland, and Morag Hood.[15]

In 2009, Sherin directed Alexander again in Thom Thomas's A Moon to Dance By at The Pittsburgh Playhouse and at The George Street Playhouse in New Brunswick, New Jersey.


Sherin executive-produced 163 episodes of the NBC drama Law & Order, between 1993 and 2000.[16] His television directing credits include all three editions of the current L&O franchise; Hill Street Blues; L.A. Law; Doogie Howser, M.D.; Homicide: Life on the Street;[17] and Medium.[18][19][20]


Sherin directed two theatrical films: Valdez Is Coming with Burt Lancaster and Susan Clark, and My Old Man's Place with William Devane and Michael Moriarty. Both films were released in 1971.

Personal life

Edwin Sherin and Jane Alexander were married in March 1975 in Massachusetts. "The two met at Washington's Arena Stage 10 years ago when he was a producer-director and she was in the troupe."[21] They had four children - Alexander's son Jace, a television director who frequently worked for him during his time with L&O, and his three sons, Tony, Geoffrey, and Jon, from a previous marriage.[16] He and Alexander became Canadian citizens, having maintained a home in Lockeport, Nova Scotia since 1998.[22] Sherin died on May 4, 2017 in Nova Scotia, aged 87.[23][24]


Sources: Internet Broadway Database;[5] Internet Off-Broadway Database[25]

  • The White Rose and the Red (1964)[35]

See also


  1. "Edwin Sherin". The New York Times.
  2. Clive Barnes (1968-10-04). "Theater: Howard Sackler's 'Great White Hope'" (PDF). The New York Times.
  3. Vincent Canby (1970-10-12). "'Great White Hope' Brought to Screen". The New York Times.
  4. Edwin Sherin profile at FilmReference.com; accessed April 10, 2011
  5. Edwin Sherin profile, IBDb.com; accessed April 10, 2011.
  6. Barnes, Clive."'The Great White Hope'" The New York Times, October 4, 1968
  7. "The First Monday in October listing" InternetBroadwayDatabase, accessed April 10, 2011
  8. Gussow, Mel."Theater:Jane Alexander Plays 'Hedda Gabler'" The New York Times, October 2, 1981,
  9. "Variety Review" VARIETY TV REV 1991-92 17 (books.google.com), JTaylor & Francis, 1994, ISBN 0-8240-3796-0, July 17, 1991 (no page number)
  10. Rich, Frank."'The Visit'; Revenge and Common Greed As the Root of Much Evil" The New York Times, January 24, 1992
  11. "Arena Stage, Production History" Archived 2011-01-12 at the Wayback Machine arenastage.org, accessed April 10, 2011
  12. "1968-1969 15th Drama Desk Awards" dramadesk.com, accessed April 10, 2011
  13. "WorldCat". Worldcat.org. Retrieved 2012-01-22.
  14. "Hollywood Beat". The Afro American. 1972-04-08. Retrieved 2012-01-22.
  15. Kolin, Philip C."London, 1974" Williams: A streetcar named desire, Cambridge University Press, 2000, ISBN 0-521-62610-2, p. 97
  16. Roberts, Jerry."Robert B. Aldrich Award" Archived 2010-03-16 at the Wayback Machine dga.org, accessed April 10, 2011
  17. Bianculli, David."A Trifecta For 'Homicide' Fans" New York Daily News, November 12, 1997
  18. "Filmography, Edwin Sherin" Archived 2012-09-23 at the Wayback Machine movies.msn.com, accessed April 11, 2011
  19. "Edwin Sherin, Filmography by year" InternetMovieDatabase, accessed April 11, 2011
  20. "Edwin Sherin, Filmography" movies.amctv.com, accessed April 11, 2011
  21. "Notes on People", The New York Times, March 15, 1975, p. 13
  22. "South Shore enchants actress". Archived from the original on 2018-09-17. Retrieved 2017-05-06.
  23. McNary, Dave (May 5, 2017). "'Law & Order' Director, DGA Official Ed Sherin Dies at 87". Variety. Retrieved May 7, 2017.
  24. Shanley, Patrick (May 5, 2017). "Edwin Sherin, Director of 'The Great White Hope' on Broadway and 'Law & Order,' Dies at 87". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 7, 2017.
  25. "Internet Off-Broadway Database listing" Archived 2012-03-10 at the Wayback Machine Internet Off-Broadway Database, accessed April 11, 2011
  26. Jones, Kenneth."'Prymate' Quietly Closes on Broadway" Archived 2010-06-19 at the Wayback Machine playbill.com, May 10, 2004
  27. Gussow, Mel."Play: 'Goodbye Fidel' About Cuban Exiles; Between Parties" The New York Times (abstract), April 24, 1980
  28. Arbuzov, Alekseĭ Nikolaevich.Script Do you turn somersaults?: A play in two parts (books.google.com), Samuel French, Inc., 1978, ISBN 0-573-60832-6, p.4
  29. Barnes, Clive."Stage:Williams' Eccentricities" The New York Times (abstract), November 24, 1976, p. 23
  30. Barnes, Clive. "'Rex' by Rodgers Stars Williamson", The New York Times, April 26, 1976, p. 32
  31. Barnes, Clive."The Stage:'Sweet Bird' of Brooklyn" The New York Times (abstract), December 4, 1975, p. 53
  32. Kanfer, Stefan."The Theater: Brute Strength" Time Magazine, December 30, 1974
  33. Randall, Bob.Script 6 rms riv vu: a Comedy in Two Acts (books.google.com), Samuel French, Inc., 1973, ISBN 0-573-61545-4, p. 3
  34. "'An Evening With Richard Nixon and..' cast and crew listing" broadwayworld.com, accessed April 12, 2011
  35. "'The White Rose and the Red' cast and crew" broadwayworld.com, accessed April 12, 2011
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