Michele Pawk
Born (1961-11-16) November 16, 1961 (age 62)
Occupation(s)Actress, singer
Spouse(s)Kevin McCollum (divorced)
John Dossett (m. 2004)
AwardsTony Award for Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Play
2003 Hollywood Arms Lucille Lortel Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play
2020 (Heroes of the Fourth Turning)

Michele Pawk (born November 16, 1961) is an American actress and singer. She is also an associate theater professor.


Born in Butler, Pennsylvania, Pawk attended Allegheny College and the College Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati,[1] where she received her BFA in musical theater. After graduation, she spent a year working in a musical revue at Disney World. In 1988, she made her Broadway debut in a short-lived musical entitled Mail, but it wasn't until 1992 that she made her mark with her performance in the Ira and George Gershwin-inspired production Crazy for You, for which she was nominated for a Drama Desk Award as Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical. From there she went on to three successful revivals – Merrily We Roll Along (1994), Chicago (1996), and Cabaret (1998) – and an original musical, Seussical (2000), based on the works of Dr. Seuss.

In 2002, Pawk earned critical raves for her performance in Hollywood Arms, the Carrie HamiltonCarol Burnett play adapted from Burnett's memoir, One More Time. Her portrayal of an alcoholic who dreams of success as a movie magazine writer, a character based on Burnett's mother, won her the Tony Award as Best Featured Actress in a Play. She was featured in Hairspray as Velma Von Tussle, after appearing in Mamma Mia! as "Donna" (October 19, 2005 – February 20, 2006).

Pawk's television credits include L.A. Law, The Golden Girls, and all three editions of the Law & Order franchise. She appeared in small roles in the films Jeffrey (1995) and Cradle Will Rock (1999). She also guest starred on an episode of Quantum Leap (1990) and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (2020).

Pawk was featured alongside Victoria Clark and Jonathan Groff in the New York premiere of "Prayer for My Enemy" by Craig Lucas at the Playwrights Horizons Theater. The play touches on several topics including the Iraq War (Groff plays a young veteran), homosexuality, alcoholism, and the definition of family. The play ran from November 14, 2008, through December 21, 2008.[2] In December 2022, Pawk took over the role of Madame Morrible in the Broadway production of Wicked.[3] She will play her final performance on March 3, 2024.[4]


Pawk has been a full-time faculty member at Wagner College, Staten Island, New York, since 2010, teaching advanced acting, directing and film studies.[5][6]

Personal life

She is married to actor John Dossett. They have a son, Jack, born in February 2000.[7]

Two of Michele's uncles, Johnny Pawk and Steve Pawk, were early professional basketball players in the 1930s.[8][9]

Awards and nominations



  1. ^ Everett, Carole J. (2009). "University of Cincinnati College—Conservatory of Music". College Guide for Performing Arts Majors: The Real-World Admission Guide for Dance, Music, and Theater Majors. Peterson's. p. 325. ISBN 9780768926989. Faculty, Resident Artists, and Alumni ... Alumni continue to hold key positions in the performing and media arts. Numbered among them are ... musical theatre stars Faith Prince, Lee Roy Reams, Michele Pawk, Jason Graae, Jim Walton, Vicki Lewis, and Ashley Brown.
  2. ^ Playwrights Horizon Current Season Archived 2012-09-22 at the Wayback Machine, playwrightshorizons.org, accessed November 18, 2008
  3. ^ Stewart, Zachary (November 16, 2022). "Michele Pawk to Play Madame Morrible in Broadway Production of Wicked". Theater Mania. Retrieved February 3, 2023.
  4. ^ Gans, Andrew (January 31, 2024). "Donna McKechnie to Return to Broadway in Wicked Alongside Mary Kate Morrissey, Alexandra Socha, More". Playbill. Retrieved January 31, 2024.
  5. ^ "Staten Island's Wagner College Theater Department hires a bona fide Broadway babe: Tony winner Michele Pawk" silive.com, October 7, 2010
  6. ^ Pawk Archived 2015-09-10 at the Wayback Machine wagner.edu
  7. ^ Kate Rockland (December 25, 2005). "Where the Midtown Direct, Oz and Springsteen Meet". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-05-21.
  8. ^ "Michael L. Pawk obituary". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Legacy.com. October 8, 2014. Retrieved May 17, 2019.
  9. ^ "Steve Pawk obituary". Butler Eagle. Legacy.com. March 5, 2009. Retrieved May 17, 2019.