Paul Lazarus

Adjunct lecturer

  • Paul Lazarus


Paul Lazarus is a faculty member at the USC School of Dramatic Arts. He is an award-winning director, producer and writer of film, television and theatre projects. Recently, he completed work on a short narrative film entitled Graham: A Dog’s Story, which is shot entirely from the viewpoint of a purebred Lab. His feature length documentary, SlingShot, about noted Segway inventor Dean Kamen and his work to solve the world’s water crisis, appeared in over 40 film festivals around the world and garnered numerous awards. SlingShot is currently available on iTunes, Amazon Prime and Vimeo. Lazarus directed and produced the feature film, Seven Girlfriends, starring Tim Daly, Mimi Rogers, Jami Gertz and Melora Hardin. Produced independently, Seven Girlfriends was released by Castle Hill Productions and was featured on HBO and Comedy Central.

Lazarus resides in Los Angeles, where he has been directing many notable primetime television series. Most recently, he directed Pretty Little Liars for ABC Family, Second Generation Wayans for the BET, The Middle, Samantha Who? and Ugly Betty for ABC, and Big Time Rush for Nickelodeon. Past shows include Friends, Psych, Everybody Loves Raymond, Melrose Place, Mad About You, LA Law and Dream On.

For the Hollywood Bowl, he produced and directed the acclaimed 75th birthday tribute to Stephen Sondheim. That evening featured the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Barbra Streisand, Warren Beatty, Angela Lansbury, Carol Burnett, Eric McCormack, Jason Alexander and Bernadette Peters, among many others. His play, A Tale of Charles Dickens, co-written with Janet Jones, was produced and recorded for radio by Los Angeles Theater Works in association with the Antaeus Theater Company. Other L.A. credits include directing John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men and Neil Simon’s Biloxi Blues at the Pasadena Playhouse, directing Kristin Chenoweth in her solo concert debut and the world premiere of a new musical, The People vs. Mona, also at the Pasadena Playhouse. Favorite Los Angeles theatrical projects include directing the world premieres of Mark St. Germain’s play Camping With Henry and Tom — starring Robert Prosky, Ronny Cox and John Cunningham, and The 24th Day — starring Noah Wyle and Peter Berg. Camping… received the Outer Critics’ Circle and Lucille Lortel awards for best off-Broadway play. The 24th Day received six Los Angeles Dramalogue awards, including best director and four Ovation Award nominations.

In the early ’90s, he served as the artistic director of the historic Pasadena Playhouse. Lazarus has directed over 90 plays and musicals in such prominent theatres as The Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, Playwrights Horizons, The Manhattan Theater Club, Circle Rep, The Actors Studio, La Mama ETC and The Goodspeed Opera House, to name a few. Highlights include receiving a Drama Desk nomination for directing the hit off-Broadway musical, Personals, which was written by David Crane, Seth Friedman and Marta Kauffman and composed by Stephen Schwartz and Alan Menken; directing Anouilh’s Antigone for the Lincoln Center Institute; serving as associate director for the celebrated concert version of Stephen Sondheim’s Follies, starring Carol Burnett, Lee Remick and Mandy Patinkin; and staging the premieres of Jon Klein’s drama, Life Class, for the Art Institute of Chicago; David Crane and Larry Coen’s comedy, Epic Proportions for the Manhattan Punch Line; and Mark St. Germain and Randy Courts’ AT&T award-winning musical Johnny Pye and the Foolkiller for the George Street Playhouse.

Early in his career, he produced and directed A Stephen Sondheim Evening, which starred Angela Lansbury, George Hearn and Stephen Sondheim. That evening was recorded by RCA Records and received a Grammy nomination. He produced and hosted Anything Goes, an award-winning radio series celebrating the American musical theatre past, present and future for WBAI-FM in New York and National Public Radio. For many years, he has served on the executive board of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society. A graduate of Dartmouth College, Lazarus apprenticed with the Royal Shakespeare Company in England.


Dartmouth College