Miles Wilkin (BSBA '70), a UF alumnus and innovator in the international entertainment industry, visited the University of Florida School of Theatre and Dance February 21. Wilkin, the vice chair of The John Gore Organization, visited with students and gave a lecture about his life and career.
Wilkin has won numerous awards, including six Tony Awards for producing Spamalot, Hairspray, The Producers, Fiddler on the Roof, Gypsy and Jerome Robbins’ Broadway. Wilkin has also been honored with a Theatre Lifetime Achievement Award from The Broadway League and a 2016 Special Tony Award, but he did not grow up in the theatre world. It was during his time as a business major at UF that he learned he was a natural leader after working on events like Gator Growl.
“These student organizations and activities taught me how to organize and build something, which was very practical and important for me,” he said.
His experiences led him into a career in event programming, where he met people in the theatre industry. Wilkin went on to revolutionize the Broadway touring system through Broadway Across America, which brings theatre to people all across the country.
Reflecting on his career, Wilkin said that his favorite part has been the opportunity to work with some really great people and mentors. Wilken encouraged students interested in theatre to immerse themselves in the world and stressed the importance of meaningful relationships in what he describes as a “cottage industry.”
"Learn what you can in school where it's easy and OK to fail sometimes, and then go out and apply that knowledge and get practical experience,” he said.