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Mr. Pope is originally from Alabama, making his unintended way to Atlanta by way of New York City (where, unlike Tony Bennett, he left HIS heart).  The performing bug came early when he joined the cast of Music Man at Jacksonville State University.  Suddenly he found his place in the world.  He performed in the local community children’s theatre and slowly graduated to their main stage productions as well getting roles at Jacksonville State University by the time he was in 10th grade.  When high school graduation arrived he was ready to leave for New York City!  Wisely his greatest champion, his dad, told him that he had to get an undergraduate degree first!  He said he would help him get to NYC, but ONLY if he first went through a college program.  He finished Jacksonville State University with a double major in theatre and history in three years.  After a brief one-year layover at Disney World, he was accepted to the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City.  After finishing there he spent the next five years as a professional actor, working Off-Broadway, on television (snobbishly do soaps and commercials to pay the bills), and in cabarets.  Over the span of his acting career he has had the honor of playing the roles of The Emcee in Cabaret (both locally and professionally); Tony in West Side Story (his favorite role and show ever); Mordred in Camelot; Seymour in Little Shop of Horrors;  Matt in The Fantasticks; Robert in Beyond the Horizon; and more.  He truly loved it all, but he became burned out by the time he was in his late 20s.  Deciding to take a break he came home and wound up earning a master's and eventually an EdS in education.  he never looked back.

    This begins his 23rd year of teaching and his 14th year at Midtown High School.  If you had asked him in his 20s if he would wind up in Atlanta he would have laughed.  If you had asked him if he would be a director, he would have roared!  Yet here he is, loving every show that he has directed, excited by the students that walk across this stage in every capacity.  Grady has a truly remarkable theatre program and he counts himself lucky to work alongside John Brandhorst, Jake Dreiling, Kevin Hill, and Lisa Willoughby (whom he credits with putting him back in the theatre…her encouragement is amazing).  He has had the pleasure of directing AMAZING talent in Cabaret; Into the Woods; Brighton Beach Memoirs; Thoroughly Modern Millie; Anything Goes; Gypsy; Grease; South Pacific; A Chorus Line, West Side Story; Drowsy Chaperone, and Little Shop of Horrors.  He doesn't know what the future holds, but he knows that as long as it holds Midtown Theatre and Film, he is contented and blessed to be here.

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