Past Commencement Speakers - Norbert Leo Butz


Norbert Leo Butz
Award Winning Actor

Norbert Leo ButzAward-winning Broadway star Norbert Leo Butz is a 1990 graduate of Webster University’s Conservatory of Theatre Arts in the Leigh Gerdine College of Fine Arts. He received the Outstanding Alumni Award from the Leigh Gerdine College of Fine Arts in 2000.

The Saint Louis native made his Broadway debut as Roger Davis in the musical “Rent” in 1996. Since then he has gone on to star in numerous Broadway shows including “Dead Accounts,” “Enron,” “Speed the Plow,” “Wicked” and “Thou Shalt Not.” He won a Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical for his work in “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” in 2005 and for “Catch Me If You Can” in 2011.

In addition to his work on the stage, his film credits include “Greetings from Tim Buckley,” “The English Teacher,” “Higher Ground” and “Dan In Real Life.” His television work includes “The Deep End,” “Comanche Moon,” “The Good Wife,” “CSI” and “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.” 

Born Jan. 30, 1967, Butz is the seventh of 11 children. A graduate of Bishop DuBourg High School in St. Louis, some of his first theatrical roles included roles at area schools including Cor Jesu Academy and Nerinx Hall. In addition to his BFA from Webster, he earned an MFA degree from the University of Alabama, Alabama Shakespeare Festival’s Professional Actor Training Program. 

Butz also helped produce, write and record an album for The Angel Band Project, a Saint Louis based non-profit organization formed after the tragic murder of his sister, Teresa Butz, and the attack on Teresa’s partner. The Angel Band Project uses music to promote healing, raise awareness and create positive change for survivors of sexual violence. Butz recently headlined two benefit concerts in Saint Louis for the Angel Band Project to help fund the non-profit’s pilot music therapy program for sexual violence survivors.

2013 Commencement Address by Norbert Leo Butz (20:44)