Alumnus embraces first professional project

September 18, 2019

With the first project he’s worked on during his professional career about to come to fruition, one recent Penn State alumnus credits hands-on experience he gained at the University for putting him in a position to succeed.

Elan Fingles earned his advertising/public relations degree in 2018 and headed to Hollywood after graduation to start a job with Jesse Murphy & James Sears Bryant’s company, Jesse James Films. As an undergraduate Fingles had been selected for the Penn State Hollywood Program, which solidified his eventual career path.

He completed two internships — one at Grandview/Automatik, a talent and literary management and production company, and one with Wayans Alvarez Productions, the production company run by actor Marlon Wayans. He embraced the high-energy entertainment world and planned to return, doing so a week after walking across the stage during commencement exercises at the Bryce Jordan Center. Connections he made during his internships helped lead to his first job.

“I don’t want to sound cliché when saying that the Hollywood Program was life-changing, but I’d simply be lying if I said it wasn’t,” Fingles said. “Without the opportunity to come out to L.A. for a semester, not only would I not have had access to jobs in entertainment — I wouldn’t have even known they existed.”

“Without the opportunity to come out to L.A. for a semester, not only would I not have had access to jobs in entertainment — I wouldn’t have even known they existed.” 

-- Elan Fingles, 2018 advertising/public relations

Ironically, Fingles has focused neither on film nor on Hollywood during the first part of his career.

His initial project, nearly two years in development, is the off-Broadway debut of “Only Human” — a musical that tells the story of the Bible according to the devil, with Academy Award nominee Gary Busey in the role of God.

“In its simplest form it’s a comedic pop-rock musical. In an even simpler form … it’s just bizarre,” Fingles said. “The music is incredible, the script is hilarious, and Gary is very Gary.”

The limited engagement of “Only Human” begins with paid previews Oct. 8 and the premiere on Oct. 21. More information about the show the St. Clements Theatre, located at 46th Street and 9th Avenue in New York City, may be found online (http://onlyhumanmusical.com/).

  • "Only Human" opens off-Broadway with paid previews on Oct. 8.

    IMAGE: Image Provided
Last Updated September 18, 2019