Briarcliff Resident to be Honored with Award for Outstanding Contributions to Broadway and Entertainment Engineering

William Gorlin PE, SE, Vice President of Entertainment Engineering at McLaren Engineering Group

William Gorlin PE, SE, Vice President of Entertainment Engineering at McLaren Engineering Group, will receive the prestigious Tenth Annual “Backstage Legends and Masters” Award from the Broadway Technical Theatre History Project.

Gorlin’s expertise has contributed to the success of over 200 Broadway productions. His portfolio includes shows such as Chicago, Will Rogers Follies, The Color Purple, The Music Man, King Kong, Merrily We Roll Along, A Bronx Tale, Tina the Musical, The Little Mermaid, Here Lies Love, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, The Lion King, Billy Elliot, Frozen the Musical, Moulin Rouge, Phantom of the Opera, and Beauty and the Beast.

Reflecting on his extraordinary journey, Gorlin states, “My passion for entertainment engineering was ignited with a project for the Moscow Circus back in 1988, and since then, I’ve had the privilege of providing solutions for iconic concerts from The Rolling Stones to Taylor Swift, amusements that thrill audiences from Orlando to Macau, TV and film productions, high-flying live performances, and even work on the first fully immersive LED theater wall in Cotai. Every project has been an exhilarating adventure, but my heart will always belong to Broadway.”

Gorlin’s influence extends beyond individual productions; he has played a pivotal role in shaping the structural renovations of 41 Broadway theaters. Notable projects encompass the Helen Hayes Theater, Hudson Theatre, restoration of iconic venues like the Winter Garden Theater, Majestic Theater and Studio 54, Belasco, Longacre, Schoenfeld, James Earl Jones, and Lyric Theaters.

Gorlin further emphasizes his commitment to Broadway, stating, “The work on shows and productions, rigging systems, and theater renovations are all exciting, but I am most proud of the work we have done to not only transform the audience experience but also keep the theatrical infrastructure relevant for modern shows and to improve safety features and standards in the theaters for all workers.”

Gorlin joins previous Backstage Legends and Masters honorees Artie Siccardi (2012), Arnold Abramson (2013), Fred Gallo (2014), Gene O’Donovan (2015), Pete Feller, Sr. (2016), Joseph B. Forbes (2017), Alyce Gilbert (2018), David Rosenberg (2019), and Bill Mensching (2023).

“Bill is likely one of the only people who has worked on every Broadway theatre,” says Dan Hanessian, associate professor at Purchase, who launched the Broadway Technical Theatre History Project in 2011. “If you consider just the work Bill has done in every Broadway theatre, not the productions, but the structural engineering part, that alone makes him unique. When you combine that with all the productions he has worked on, the standards for the industry he has helped shape, and countless other ways he has impacted Broadway practices, it’s hard to imagine anyone with a comparable portfolio of work,” Hanessian concludes.

The award ceremony is scheduled for Monday, April 29th, 2024, at 7 pm in the PAC Recital Hall at Purchase College, SUNY.

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