Starting 7/23/24, 7:30:00 pm: In the Silence Film Screening

Lisa Kelly

I have an undergraduate degree in theatre, an MFA in directing and theatre pedagogy, and a PhD in Theatre History. My research focuses on the social and political engagement and activism of 19th century British actresses and theorizing the underpinnings of contemporary celebrity culture.

I have worked as a director, stage manager, and dramaturg in regional and university theatres in Iowa, New Jersey, North Carolina, Virginia, and Chicago. I have worked with TCR since 2015 first as backstage crew, then as a stage manager for Grandon shows, a dramaturg, an assistant director for The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Annie, Billy Elliot, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and as a director for Ada and the Memory Engine and New Play Festival.

When I’m not at the theatre I work at the University of Iowa in the Graduate College where I facilitate professional development for graduate students around teaching and career preparation and run a program helping graduate students integrate their teaching and research.


I am a collaborative director. I like to spend a lot of time exploring ideas in the rehearsal room and encouraging everyone to take risks and think creatively. The best insights into a play or into character often come from trying something totally different or unexpected. We spend time talking about character and context throughout the rehearsal process while working on scenes. It’s important to me that rehearsals are productive, but also a lot of fun.

Lisa joins our 19/20 Season as…