15 Directors and Choreographers to Follow On Social MediaFeb 24, 2023
Written By Melvin Tunstall III
We’re back with another roundup of TheaterMakers to follow on your social media platforms. Today we set our sights on 15 Directors and Choreographers to watch! Did any of your favorites make the list? Check out the links below!
One of Forbes Magazine’s 30 Under 30 in Hollywood & Entertainment, Sammi’s recent theater credits include Evita (New York City Center), Endlings (New York Theatre Workshop, A.R.T.), Ragtime on Ellis Island, Violet on a moving bus (A.R.T.), and Allegory (La Jolla Playhouse). Upcoming projects include Carmen at Lincoln Center with MasterVoices.
With the announcement of Douglas Lyon’s Chicken & Biscuits making the move to Broadway, Levingston is set to make history as Broadway’s youngest Black director. The play will premiere at the Circle in the Square Theatre starting September 23, 2021, with an opening night on October 10. Theater veterans Norm Lewis and Michael Urie will star in the limited engagement!
The director and his company, the Forest of Arden, who made last summer’s immersive “American Dream Study” in the Hudson Valley, teamed up with the playwrights Jen Silverman and Eric Berryman for the new immersive performance Alien/Nation, which uses local history from 1969 as a starting point for this year’s Williamstown Festival.
The Associate Choreographer and Global Dance Supervisor for Hamilton was recently named Choreographer of the new musical “A Commercial Jingle for Regina Comet,” premiering at the DR2 Theater. After making a stellar directing debut with In The Heights at the Kennedy Center, all eyes are on the dynamo for the announcement of her next directing gig!
The senior resident director at Roundabout Theatre Company, who directed A Soldier’s Play last season, joined the company January 2021 with a focus on selecting Roundabout’s plays and musicals for on-stage productions and workshops and helping develop the careers of BIPOC directors training at the theater. Though it has yet to be announced, Leon is set to premiere a new musical at the Alliance Theater in the 2021-2022 season.
The Juilliard-trained Mrs. Doubtfire and Waitress choreographer’s views on her choreographic style are grounded in humility. “I’m less interested in putting on a style that is particularly ‘the Lorin Latarro style’, I’m less interested in putting that on top of any story, it’s just not my thing. I’m more interested in finding a unique way of moving for each story, so that each piece of choreography I do moves differently and moves organically inside what the story is trying to say.”
Just announced for the Tony winner is Liliana Padilla’s How to Defend Yourself, which she will co-direct with Padilla and Steph Paul for the New York Theater Workshop’s 2022-2023 season. We’ve also got our eyes on Lempicka, which is finally opening at La Jolla Playhouse after pandemic delays.
Once On This Island’s choreographer has not stopped since she burst on the scene! With her brilliant mind behind the dances of the new musical adaptation of Soul Train, audiences will surely be dancing up and down the aisles alongside the lucky dances chosen to bring her vision to life!
The Tony-nominated director gave us all a much-needed dose of laughter this past spring with the acclaimed streaming production of Larissa FastHorse’s The Thanksgiving Play starring Bobby Cannavale, Keanu Reeves, Heidi Schreck, and Alia Shawkat.
The mastermind behind Broadway Bares has three new musicals he’s working on for Broadway: Becoming Nancy, another inspired by Betty Boop (with Bob Martin writing the book, lyrics by Susan Birkenhead, and music by David Foster), and an adaptation of Jeffrey Self’s YA novel Drag Teen. The creative team for Drag Teen includes book writer Troy Johnson, with a score by Stephen Oremus and Jake Shears of the Scissor Sisters.
Noted Korean-American playwright Young Jean Lee’s new one-woman show “We’re All Gonna Die” is a tour-de-force for its leading lady. “She gets hit with all of this real trauma and all of this pain. And she has the choice of ‘I can be sad and lost in despair and isolate myself the way that I know how to do. Or I can just look at it and say, f*** it, I’m still alive now. I might die tomorrow. What am I going to do with today?’”
The famed theater director has spent lots of time behind the camera lately, and it doesn’t look like she will slow down anytime soon! Disney recently announced Tommy will executive produce and direct an episode of ABC Signature’s eight-episode prequel to the 2017 live-action film Beauty and the Beast starring Book of Mormon breakout star Josh Gad.
The 2020 Tony nominee for Moulin Rouge, who was set to premiere the new musical Sing Street when the pandemic halted all productions, says the “Backstage Romance” sequence is her favorite number in Moulin Rouge. “It’s your quintessential Broadway-musical, opening-of-Act-Two, big dance number. It was so fun to combine highly physical, sensual movement with the plot driving forward quickly. The secret of Christian and Satine’s affair is brewing, and that hidden sexual tension forms the baseline of the movement.”
The Obie and Lilly Award-winning director, actor, and musician based in Brooklyn is the current recipient of the Susan Stroman Directing award. An Artistic Associate at the Roundabout and part of the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative, White’s original musical Definition was part of the 2019 Sundance Theatre Lab and her five-part musical exploration of Shakespeare’s Women and ambition “Reach for It” is currently under commission with the American Repertory Theater in Boston.
The visionary behind Moulin Rouge was recently announced as the Production Consultant for the move of David Byrne’s American Utopia from the Hudson to the St. James Theater for its limited return engagement. Followers of his social media channels are treated to a host of production photos and behind-the-scenes looks at some of his biggest hits!
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