Susan L. Schulman has been a theatrical press agent for over 40 years, handling Broadway, off-Broadway, dance, film, special events, TV, books, dance and individual personalities.
Born and bred in New York City, she attended Hunter Elementary and Hunter High School, NYU and holds a Master’s degree in Theatre Arts from Columbia University.
Upon graduation from college she landed several low-paying but interesting jobs including Assistant to the Press Director at Lincoln Center which utilized her writing skills and love of the theatre. After a year and a half at L.C. she worked for virtually every top theatrical press agent in New York, honing her skills with the legendary Bill Doll, Mary Bryant, Arthur Cantor, Frank Goodman and Merle Debuskey. She also worked at WNET/Channel 13 (handling The Forsyte Saga, An American Family, etc.) and at United Artists as a Senior Publicist (Lady Caroline Lamb, Last Tango in Paris and Tom Sawyer, The Musical.)
Susan has heralded such worthy projects as Lauren Bacall in APPLAUSE, Jim Dale in SCAPINO, George C. Scott in DEATH OF A SALESMAN and SLY FOX, Bob Fosse’ DANCIN’, DEATH AND THE MAIDEN with Glenn Close, Richard Dryefuss and Gene Hackman, A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE with Alec Baldwin and Jessica Lange, a cross-country publicity tour with Susan Hampshire for THE FORSYTE SAGA, THE DANCE THEATRE OF HARLEM, FELD BALLET, JOFFREY BALLET, CIRCLE IN THE SQUARE, PHOENIX THEATRE, MANHATTAN THEATRE CLUB, etc. She has also been associated with such less memorable productions as “The Candy Apple,” “Brighttower,” “Father’s Day,” “All God’s Chillun’ Got Wings,” “An American Millionaire,” “Nash at Nine,” “Cleavage,” “All Night Strut,” “Waltz of the Stork,” “How To Build a Better Tulip” and “The Merchant” (the production that killed Zero Mostel.)
In 1978 Susan opened her own press office in the legendary Paramount Building handling theatre, dance, books, special events and individual personalities. Clients included Karen Akers, Carlin Glynn and Peter Masterson, Jack Gilford, Gene Klavan, The Feld Ballet, MTC, Phoenix Theatre, Joffrey Ballet, The Cleveland Play House, Garrison Keillor and “A Prairie Home Companion,” plus the Broadway production of REQUIEM FOR A HEAVYWEIGHT with John Lithgow and George Segal.
In 1984, CBS made Susan the offer she couldn’t refuse, so she closed her office and moved to CBS-TV ENTERTAINMENT in the newly-created position of Director, Press Information, handling the publicity for all the CBS Mini- Series including SPACE, ROBERT KENNEDY AND HIS TIMES, ALICE IN WONDERLAND and Joan Collins in SINS.
After CBS, Susan headed the Public Relations/Corporate Communications department at USA NETWORK for 4 years where she supervised the growth of the popular basic cable network from 4 hours of original programming per week to a full 24-hour schedule of new and/or exclusive programming. She then moved to the ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT Network (A&E) in a similar capacity and was subsequently named Vice President at Brown & Powers Public Relations, an international firm where she headed the Entertainment Division handling clients such as the BBC and Andrew Lloyd Webber.
In 1992 Susan returned to her first love, the theatre, handling the Broadway production of CITY OF ANGELS as well as the movie star-laden productions of DEATH AND THE MAIDEN and A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE. Surviving that, Susan decided to re-open her own theatrical press office, back home in the Paramount Building. In addition to such Broadway productions as the ‘new Rodgers & Hammerstein musical’ STATE FAIR and the Johnny Mercer musical DREAM, Susan has represented many extraordinary Broadway, TV and film actors including BRIAN STOKES MITCHELL, KAREN ZIEMBA, KATHLEEN CHALFANT, KAREN MASON, PENNY FULLER, HARRY GROENER and JASON GRAAE. She handled the national tours of STATE FAIR, PORGY AND BESS and MAN OF LA MANCHA as well as such not-for-profit arts institutions as Repertorio Espanol, The York Theatre, The Colleagues Theatre Company, CAP21, The All for One Festival, the Theatre World Awards, and Pulse Ensemble Theatre.
She is honored to be featured in three recent theatre books: IT HAPPENED ON BROADWAY by Myrna and Harvey Frommer; THE BIRTH OF SHYLOCK AND THE DEATH OF ZERO MOSTEL by Arnold Wesker, and Peter Filichia’s BROADWAY MUSICALS: The Biggest Hits and the Biggest Flops 1959-2009. Susan has been an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University’s Graduate School of the Arts, creating and teaching a course in theatrical publicity and audience development, and often lectures about the theatre and public relations. She has been a member of ATPAM (Assn. of Theatrical Press Agents and Managers) since 1973 and served on the Board of Advisors of Inside Broadway. She is included in numerous Who’s Who lists and is a graduate of the AWED program for women business owners. She has served as a NYSCA (New York State Council on the Arts) Theatre Program Panelist.
Her memoir BACKSTAGE PASS TO BROADWAY was published in 2013 and is Amazon’s list of top 100 books on theatre.