ASHTON BYRUM is an Associate Professor and Coordinator of the Musical Theatre Performance program at Columbia College Chicago. After a long acting career in New York and around the world, he earned his MFA in Directing from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) in 2010. He’s had the privilege of working with students that have gone on to Broadway, National Tours, Regional and stock theatres, theme parks and cruise ships all over the country. He’s directed How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying at The Little Theatre on the Square, [title of show] and The Marvelous Wonderettes at Open Door Theatre, Bye Bye Birdie and Annie Get Your Gun for the Wilmette Starlight Theatre; Anything Goes, Orpheus Descending, Urinetown and Godspell at CCM, and Rent, Victor/Victoria, Oklahoma! (and the upcoming Once On This Island) as well as several Freshmen/Senior Showcases for Columbia College Chicago.
His acting credits include three seasons on Broadway in Susan Stroman’s annual A Christmas Carol with Tim Curry, F. Murray Abraham and Jim Dale, and the National Touring companies of The Producers (US and Tokyo), Fiddler on the Roof with Theodore Bikel, Grease! With Adrian Zmed, Sutton Foster and Marissa Jaret Winokur, Will Rogers Follies with Larry Gatlin, I Love New York, and My Fair Lady (Europe). Ashton has played roles in regional and stock productions around the country including: The Music Man and 9 to 5 (Little Theatre on the Square), The Spitfire Grill (Idaho Shakespeare Festival and Arkansas Rep.), Forever Plaid (Flat Rock Playhouse, NC), Joseph…Dreamcoat and Cats (Ogunquit Playhouse, ME), West Side Story (Westchester Broadway Theatre, NY), Kingdom (Denver Center Theatre Company), and The Secret Garden (Paper Mill Playhouse). Recently, he sang in the Launch Concert for FWD Theatre Project at City Winery in Chicago.
He’s a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association and a new board member for The Sarah Siddons Society. Originally from NC, Ashton and his wife Gina now live in Oak Park, IL with their 7 year-old son, Dylan.