F. J. Hartland has a reputation as a published playwright, professional actor, award-winning director and respected theatre reviewer. He holds a BA in English from Westminster College and an MFA in Playwriting from Carnegie-Mellon University. He made his NYC debut as a playwright at the age of 23 when the Ensemble Studio Theatre presented a workshop of his award-winning play A Piano Player with Sad Brown Eyes. Other NYC credits include the Emerging Artists Theatre, GayFest NYC, Lovecreek Productions, Quaigh Theatre, 13th Street Theatre, Don’t Tell Mama and Lincoln Center Library Theatre. Five times he was a finalist in the Samuel French Off-Off-Broadway Short Play Festival—winning in 1983 and 1985. In 2008 he was the recipient of a Playwriting Fellowship from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. In Pittsburgh his plays have been performed at Duquesne University, Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre, Bricolage, Rage of the Stage, Cup-A-Joe, South Park Theatre, Upstairs Theatre and a record-setting eleven times in the Pittsburgh New Works Festival where he has taken home the “Donna Award” for Best Play in 2005,2010 and 2011.
A member of Actors’ Equity since 1991, F. J. has performed at Off The Wall Theatre, the Pittsburgh Playhouse REP and at the Mountain Playhouse.
He has directed more than fifty production at Mount Aloysius College while serving as their Director of Theatre. Locally, he has directed at Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre and McKeesport Little Theatre, where he was named “Best Director of 2009-2010” for his production of The Wizard of Oz.
For three years he served as the theatre reviewer for outonline.