August 27, 1935 – September 21, 2014
Born and raised in Chicago, Sheldon graduated from the University of Chicago with a degree in English. While there, he joined Playwright's Theater Club, the pivotal 1950s group that spawned both the Compass Players and The Second City, where he produced plays with a group of other students including Mike Nichols, Elaine May, and Ed Asner. Sheldon was a member of The Second City Chicago in 1959, and in Toronto in 1974. He was a writer-assistant producer for “SCTV” (1976-78). He provided additional dialogue for an adaptation of an Isaac Bashevis Singer novel “The Magician of Lublin.” He was formerly chair of the theater department at Columbia College Chicago, serving from 1980 until 2009, and served as chair emeritus until his death. Some directing credits include “The Glass Menagerie” (Gift Theater Company), “South Pacific” (Metropolis Art Center), “Uncle Vanya” (Steppenwolf), “Long Day's Journey into Night” (Irish Rep at Ireland’s Galway Festival), and “Death of a Salesman” (Steppenwolf). His “Puttin' on the Ritz: an Irving Berlin American Songbook” won Joseph Jefferson Awards for Best Revue and Best Director. In 1991, Sheldon received a special Joseph Jefferson Award for Service to the Chicago Theater Community and, in 1992, he was presented the Illinois Association's Outstanding Contribution Award. He was an ensemble member at the Gift Theatre in Chicago. Survived by sister Ida (the late Rabbi Daniel) Goldberger and Norman (Jacqueline) Patinkin. Cherished uncle of Lynn, Karen (Peter Landon) and Phillip (Suzanne) Patinkin; Debbie (David) Beren, Rabbi Menachem (Bracha), the late David (Helle) and Joel (Marsha) Goldberger, and many loving great nieces and nephews.