YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections


Actress Brings Some Comic Relief to the Lives of Psychiatric Patients

August 29, 1993

Actress Anne Randolph has found a way to share her love of theater and help others. The Santa Monica resident works as an assistant social worker at the Community Psychiatric Center in Westwood, where she directs comedies written and performed by patients in the hospital's day program.

"I have always been drawn to working with people who have mental disabilities," said the 29-year-old Ohio native. "They have been kind of pushed aside and some lead very lonely lives."

Randolph started working with mental patients during her college days at Ohio University in Athens. To support herself, she worked 15 hours a week with patients at a state mental hospital there in exchange for room and board. It was there that she wrote plays and cast patients for performances. The shows were an immediate hit with patients and audiences.

After graduating with a degree in psychology and theater, Randolph worked with troubled teen-agers as an artist in residence at theaters in Boston and New York City. She went on to teach playwriting and theater to students for a year at the University of Alaska in Valdez.

Two years ago, Randolph moved to Los Angeles to devote more time to her acting career. She also joined the Community Psychiatric Center Hospital staff and began recruiting patients for shows.

"The skills that I learned in college are the basic rules of improv or staging," she said. "I can teach (the patients) the same things that I am working on because improv is free form."

Randolph said she is enjoying the best of both worlds. It is sometimes difficult to hold a challenging job while pursuing an acting career, but she said she wouldn't want it any other way.

"It's such a joyous experience to watch them," she said. "They really don't have a chance to get out of their lives, and this day program provides an outlet for them."

The patients are now rehearsing "Clementine Goes to Camp," which will be performed in the fall. Costumes for the shows are supplied by the Groundlings comedy troupe.

In addition, Randolph performs in comedy clubs throughout the city and recently finished a part in a feature film.


Patricia Samarage has been named teacher of the year in the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District.

Samarage is an assistant principal at Roosevelt Elementary School in Santa Monica, and teaches English as a Second Language.


The Los Angeles affiliate of Shaare Zedek Medical Jerusalem will award its "Women For" award to Linda Komorsky, vice president of International Acquisitions and Marketing for BMG Music Publishers.

Komorsky, a longtime supporter of the hospital, will be honored Sept. 12 at a luncheon at the Beverly Hilton.


Loyola Marymount University has awarded academic scholarships to Lynn Oku of Venice and Jennifer Auer of Santa Monica in recognition of their academic accomplishment and potential.

The candidates maintained overall grade point averages of 3.6 and had combined SAT scores above 1200. The scholarships are worth $6,300.


The Jewish Community Centers Assn. of Greater Los Angeles will celebrate 50 years of service to the community with a dinner Sept. 12 at the Museum of Flying in Santa Monica.

Past presidents of the organizations will also be honored with awards. Honorees include Beverly Hills residents David Fox, Louis Warschaw, Bernard Levin and Irwin Daniels; Brentwood resident Robert Felixson; Century City resident Lawrence Irell; West Los Angeles residents Jack Brostoff, Eugene Caplin, David Finegood and Owie Miller and Westwood residents Lionel Bell and Ronald Leibow.


Frank Burris, director of UCLA Extension's Department of Engineering, received the American Society for Engineering Education's Centennial Medallion.

Burris was presented the award at a ceremony held June 22 at the ASEE Centennial Conference in Urbana, Ill. The award recognizes individuals who have had a significant and lasting impact on engineering education or engineering technology education.


The Volunteer Center of Los Angeles presented its "Community Award" to Maria Maximoff, founder and volunteer of the Music Therapy Program at Orthopaedic Hospital in Los Angeles.

Maximoff conceived the idea for the program 15 years ago as a patient while recovering from back surgery. She is a resident of Beverly Hills.

Los Angeles Times Articles