Former MSU Theater Professor Dies at 88


SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — A longtime professor of theater and danced passed away last night.

Byrne Blackwood passed away last night at the age of 88. Blackwood was born in 1930 and began his career at what is now Missouri State University in 1959 where he would spend 37 years. In 1964, Blackwood began working with the Tent Theater within the theater department, eventually becoming House Director. He was responsible for helping shape what it is today.

Blackwood’s son Randy said, “My dad was just an engaged guy. He was so fond of Springfield and wanted to promote arts and culture to really enhance everyone’s life experiences to make life better for our residents and visitors too.”

Blackwood had a large circle of friends and former students including well-known talents like Kathleen Turner, John Goodman and Tess Harper, along with thousands of students and community members.

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