Emilyn Kowaleski

Writer & Director

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About Me ~

I grew up in Berkeley, California, where I enrolled in my first acting class at the age of 7. Throughout high school I performed and trained at several Bay Area Theater companies including California Shakespeare Theater and American Conservatory Theater. In 2007, I co-founded  a student-led performing arts and philanthropy organization called Performers for Progress (now in it’s 8th year running!).

I crossed the country in 2008 to earn my B.F.A. in Drama from NYU, Tisch School of the Arts, Experimental Theater Wing, and the International Theatre Workshop in Amsterdam with a dual-degree in Psychology.  

Since graduating, I've  continued my artistic education by taking a wide range of classes from experts in the performing arts, such as Theater Mitu,  Labyrinth Theater Company , Winter Miller, Merry Conway,  Karen Begreen and The Team. I have interned and assisted for a handful of theatre companies including, Shotgun Players, foolsFURY Theater Company,  Elevator Repair Service , Big Dance Theater, and Target Margin Theater. I was the Associate Director of Young Jean Lee's Theater Company from August 2013 to January 2016 where I primarily helped develop and tour Straight White Men

From 2012 to the present, I was the lead singer/song-writer for the music project, Red Queen on the River, with whom I performed at venues across New York City. You may have also seen me performing in a few plays, readings, and films. Nowadays, occasionally you'll catch me performing some original music or a poem somewhere, but mostly, I write and direct new work (both my own, and other playwrights').

My work to date has been  presented at venues such as Manhattan Repertory Theatre, Cloud City, Grand Art Haus, Dixon Place, The Kraine, The Bowery Poetry Club, Pete's Candy Store,  Ars Nova, Access Theater,  The Performance Project at University Settlement,  JACK, and The Brick.

Currently: I am the Event Artistic Director for The League of Independent Theater's local politics and community board engagement project in the fall of 2017. I am also representing The League at Race Forward's Arts Lab to advance racial equity in arts organizations across New York City. I co-host a montly discussion called "What the F*ck is Womanhood" at Vital Joint. I am gearing up for a 2018 production of my performance poem, Our Heroine.