writing for tv: the state of the art

Thursday, October 11, 2001
5:00 - 7:00 p.m.


The television drama series has been a dominant force in our culture for the past fifty years. The advent of cable and satellite broadcasting and the emergence of the Internet have transformed the TV medium in general, and its story-telling functions in particular. In this Forum, writer/producers for such innovative shows as The West Wing and Party of Five will discuss the current state of television drama, the commercial realities and artistic possibilities of TV today and in the future.


Julia Dahl is currently on the writing staff for NBC's The West Wing and is attached to write the third installment of HBO's If These Walls Could Talk. She also wrote and produced three seasons of Party of Five, has written several screenplays, and had a full-length play, Wonderland, produced off-Broadway. Dahl attended Tufts University, but left in her junior year to pursue her writing career.

John Romano has been writer, producer and consultant on more than a dozen television shows including Hill Street Blues, L.A.Law, Knot's Landing, Party of Five, Third Watch, and Providence. In addition, he has created three series of his own: Class of '96 (Fox); Sweet Justice (NBC) with Cicely Tyson; and Michael Hayes (NBC) starring David Caruso. Previously, Romano was assistant professor of English at Columbia University, and is the author of Dickens and Reality (Columbia, 1979).