librettist/ dramaturge & stage director
Rebecca Engle (librettist/dramaturge and stage director) has directed over thirty theatrical works – at Saint Mary’s College of CA, where she ran the Theatre Program for two decades, and for conservatory programs, summer companies, and professional theatres, including Drama Studio of London, Hope Summer Rep (MI), Boston University, and DAMU (Prague). Her early career focused on Shakespeare and the classics, but she has long championed contemporary writers, specializing in scripts that center themes of social injustice and highlight historically marginalized voices. As dramaturge-director, she has collaborated in the development of a number of new plays, including west coast and world premieres by playwrights Octavio Solis, Ken Prestininzi, and Angela Santillo. She was both dramaturge and workshop director for The Hillsboro Story, a dance-theatre work which tells the story of four Civil-Rights era “Marching Mothers” who took their case against the local school board to the Supreme Court. Originating at Artists’ Repertory Theatre in Oregon, The Hillsboro Story toured nationally, with special performances in both Little Rock and at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Ohio.
Engle’s achievements as a teaching artist, director, and dramaturge have been recognized both regionally and nationally by the Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival. Among other awards, she’s been a national finalist for Outstanding Production (Nilo Cruz’ Lorca in A Green Dress); a Kennedy Center National Teaching Artist; and a Dramaturgy Fellow for the Kennedy Center’s National New Plays Symposium in Washington DC. She has mentored many young artists who have gone on to top graduate programs and professional careers, among them two-time Oscar winner Mahershala Ali. She received her graduate training in UC Berkeley’s Director-Scholar Program, and her BA from Reed College