Wednesday
Feb012012

Dan E. Campbell is a Kansas-based actor who was a long time resident of both New York and Los Angeles. The acting bug first bit him when he led the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance at an elementary school assembly and by high school he was hooked. It was on the stage at West High that Dan first encountered two roles he would seem destined to repeat throughout the years - Charlie Brown in YOU'RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN and Sheridan Whiteside in THE MAN WHO CAME TO DINNER, the latter bringing Dan his first acting award for Best Actor from the school’s Thespian troupe. During high school, Dan also made his big-screen debut as Dr. Harris Freeb in the comedy KING KUNG FU.

Immediately following his high school graduation, Dan began a long association with The Walnut Valley Horsefeathers and Applesauce Summer Dinner Theatre Association, a summer dinner theatre troupe housed on the campus of Southwestern College in Winfield, Kansas and known affectionately as “H&A” to the locals. Through the years Dan has performed many of his favorite roles with the troupe, including Nicely Nicely in GUYS AND DOLLS, Charlie in THE FOREIGNER, Charlie in ON GOLDEN POND, Herr Schultz in CABARET, and half the residents of Tuna, Texas, in GREATER TUNA, A TUNA CHRISTMAS and RED WHITE AND TUNA. At H&A Dan also taught improvisation workshops and made his directorial debut with the comedy LONDON SUITE. In 2000 Dan wrote a book chronicling the history of H&A for the troupe's 20th anniversary season.

After college Dan moved to New York, where he performed in several off-off Broadway shows and made his television debut on the soap opera AS THE WORLD TURNS. One of his early claims to fame was appearing opposite Marcia Cross in the final week of the soap opera EDGE OF NIGHT. And then there was his memorable turn as Mudman on the kid's show OUT OF CONTROL. Dan also gave his all for a few movies filmed in New York, including the Jerry Lewis/Martin Scorsese film THE KING OF COMEDY and the cult classic C.H.U.D.  After several years in New York Dan decided to give Los Angeles a try.

In Los Angeles Dan appeared in all entertainment media, including television appearances on GENERAL HOSPITAL, UNSOLVED MYSTERIES, the talk show WHAT'S YOUR GRIPE?, and a national commercial for LITTLE CAESARS PIZZA that won four Clio awards. Radio listeners have heard him in the drama THE ATTIC, and movie goers saw him as the Scared Vampire in THE VAMPIRE HUNTERS CLUB, Sidekick Bob in PREGNANT FATHER, and as the acting coach in the short film THE AUDITION. Dan also played Edna in the music video "Get A Haircut, Get A Job" for the band Honky Stomp. Dan has a long association with TV game shows, from being a contestant to working on staff.  He’s been a winning contestant on four different shows, including his biggest win of a sports car and a trip to Australia on HIGH ROLLERS. Behind the scenes he was Contestant Coordinator for BALDERDASH and HOLLYWOOD SQUARES, where he led the national search for contestants for the show's annual College Tournament.

Not long after moving to Los Angeles, Dan became a presenter and performer in the annual Golden Raspberry Awards show (also known as The Razzies), an annual parody awards ceremony dishonoring worst achievements in film. In 1990 Dan directed the show and made his first appearance as the late, great Divine. His appropriately over-the-top performance went down in the annals of Razzie folklore (a photo of which is immortalized in the book "The Official Razzie Movie Guide"), and Dan was asked to don pink dress and huge wig again in 2005 so Divine could present Worst Picture Of The Year at the gala 25th Anniversary Razzie Awards.

Dan's regional theatre appearances include playing the role of Dvornichek in the comedy ROUGH CROSSING, (MJT Award). Legit performances in Los Angeles include two years with the improvisational comedy group CARRY A BIG SCHTICK!, which featured a performance for COMIC RELIEF. Dan appeared as Inspector Clay in the critically-acclaimed and highly popular PLAN 9 FROM OUTER SPACE – THE MUSICAL, and won an ADA award as Sister Dolores in the musical ANGRY YOUNG TEEN-AGE GIRL GANG, which was also presented at the New York International Fringe Festival and the New York Musical Theatre Festival.

Since returning to his home state of Kansas in 2012, Dan has been very active in the Wichita and Winfield theatre scenes.  As a guest artist at Southwestern College he has portrayed Uncle Fester in THE ADDAMS FAMILY and Edna Turnblad in HAIRSPRAY.  He has also both acted and directed in the college's 24 HOUR PLAY FESTIVAL.  In Wichita he has reprised his roles of Herr Schultz in CABARET and half the residents of GREATER TUNA (both garnering MJT Award nominations), plus played Charley in DEATH OF A SALESMAN (MJT Award, BroadwayWorld Award), Bob Cratchit in an original musical version of A CHRISTMAS CAROL (written by his cousin Paul Ellis Jackson), Benjamin Franklin in 1776 (MJT nomination), Dr. Scott in THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW, Ben Hubbard in THE LITTLE FOXES, and Alfie Byrne in A MAN OF NO IMPORTANCE (MJT Awards for Best Lead Male in a Musical and Outstanding Ensemble).  He has also branched out into directing, garnering MJT and BroadwayWorld Awards for his work on [title of show].