Dan Harder writes a lot about a lot of different things. His theatrical work has been performed at The Marsh, Actors’ Theater, The Exit, The Jewish Community Theater, The Farm, Footworks, Bannam Place Theater, Mechanics Library Theatre (San Francisco), Greensleaves Theater (Fringe Festival, Edinburgh, Scotland), La MAMA ETC and Abingdon Theater Co. (NYC), Paramount Theater (Oakland, CA), Gallery Players (McMinnville, OR), The Western Stage (Salinas, CA), Murphys Creek Theater (Murphys, CA), Company One (Hartford, Conn.), Throckmorton Theater, (Mill Valley, CA), Marin Civic Auditorium and other venues. He won a San Francisco Bay Area Playwrights Award and his play, A Killer Story, was awarded a number of grants including a James T. Irvine Grant and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. He has published over sixty individual poems in scores of publications and three books of poetry: Rave (with poets Kevin Kissell and Trish Steinhardt, Back Alley Press, Santa Cruz, 1983), Generous Misgivings (Studio 301, San Francisco, 1985), and Askew: Found and Lost in the Almost South of France (Pince-Nez Press, 2020), two photo-essay books: San Francisco Points of View and France (Graphic Arts Center Publishing, 1996/1992), and two children’s books: A Child’s California (Westwinds Press, 2000) and Colliding With Chris (Hyperion/Disney, 1998), which received the Children’s Choice Award from the International Reading Association. Dan conceived of the poetic form and wrote the libretto for the soaPOPera Zipperz with composer Nathaniel Stookey. It premiered at the Paramount Theater in Oakland (2008) and was released as a CD and MP3 under the Warner/Ghostlight label in 2017. In July of 2019, Dan received a commission to write the libretto for a new opera about Paul Robeson to premiere with Michael Morgan and the Oakland Symphony in 2023. And in 2020, West Margin Press published his first novel, Rancho de Amor. Over two-dozen of his articles and features have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, other newspapers, magazines, and academic journals. His commentaries have been heard on National Public Radio as well as other radio programs. Over 50 published reviews of his various works are available.
Dan’s past includes working as a cowboy, a truck driver, and a librarian in California; a translator, director of a sailing school, a ski instructor, a high school English teacher, and a waiter in France; a grunt pulling green-chain in an Oregon lumber-mill; a teacher of English and philosophy at the French American School and a co-owner of a successful restaurant in San Francisco. He was – and occasionally still is – a drummer and a sculptor. A native of Los Angeles and graduate of U. C. Berkeley, Dan currently lives with his wife, Ora Schulman, with whom he co-owns a catering business.