William Kernen was born in Boise, Idaho on August 1, 1948. He grew
up in the Pacific Northwest, moved with his family to California in
1960 and spent the next 35 years living in Southern California. After
majoring in Psychology at the University of Redlands from
1966-1970, he graduated cum laude, was Student-Athlete of the
Year and immediately signed a professional baseball contract with
the Baltimore Orioles.
Following a two-year minor league career, he went into coaching, first
at a high school and then at Orange Coast Junior College. From
there, he worked his way into major college baseball at California
State, Fullerton, the University of Illinois, California State, Northridge
and North Carolina State. Kernen's programs soon became ranked in
the Top 10 in the country, winning league and regional
championships in the NCAA, and ultimately an NCAA Division I
While at the top of a profession in big-time collegiate athletics,
Kernen decided at the age of 47 to move to New York City in the
summer of 1995 to pursue a career as a playwright. He studied at
Columbia University with Eduardo Machado for the next two years.
During this time, two full-length plays were written and produced in
New York in 1997, And Other Fairy Tales and A Graveyard
Symphony. In 1998, another full-length play was completed, Galleria
degli Angeli, and a fourth, Musica de Mariposa, was completed in
1999. And Other Fairy Tales was a finalist in the Oglebay Institute
National Playwriting Competition, 1997.
In April 2001, Galleria degli Angeli was produced in New York at The
Independent Theatre. Kernen directed this production as his first full
length directing effort. This was followed by several one-act plays
produced also in New York.
In 2005, one of these, In the House of Athazagora, was produced as
a short film. Kernen directed this film as well.
This was followed by a return to his former profession as a Division 1
college baseball coach. He was hired to build a brand new program
from scratch at California State University, Bakersfield. This project
was undertaken in 2007 and continued until he retired from coaching
in June, 2015.
He has returned to New York City to resume theatre and film
endeavors and resides in Manhattan.
William Kernen is represented by the Robert A. Freedman Dramatic Agency in New York City.
William Kernen has written 11 plays, two of which were produced while
studying at Columbia University under Eduardo Machado. Five other plays,
four of which are one-act dramas, were subsequently produced in New York.
Full length work, "Galleria degli Angeli" received critical acclaim and was
directed by Kernen as well. He has written, directed and produced a short
film, "In the House of Athazagora".