Welcome to the Drama League Directors Project Fellowships. These extraordinary, award-winning programs are designed to help early and mid-career directors take the next big step in their professional evolution. The five areas of focus each offer unparalleled opportunities for training, network development, production opportunity, and artistic growth. Below, you'll find detailed information on each of the initiatives and the 2018 fellowship recipients.
Sherri Eden Barber, Program Director
Gabriel Stelian-Shanks, Executive Artistic Director
Detailed information about each of our programs can be found by clicking the links below:
- New York Directing Fellowship (formerly titled Fall Directing Fellowship).
The Drama League DirectorFest production of She Persisted directed by 2017 Directors Project Musical Fellow Laura Brandel. Photo: Michael Bonasio.
2018 Fellowship Recipients
Classical Directing Fellowship
The Drama League Classical Directing Fellows will enjoy summer residencies at three of America’s leading theatrical homes for classical work – The Old Globe, The Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, and Shakespeare & Company – assisting on mainstage productions and directing in their educational and touring programs.
MYEONGSIK JASON JANG
MYEONGSIK JASON JANG is a stage director and a member of the South Korean theatre company Go-Rae. In South Korea, He has directed WAITING FOR LEFTY, BUT THAT’S NOT IT, THE SEAGULL, THE CRUCIBLE, KING LEAR, THE CENCI, MAGIC TIME, and THE TROJAN WOMEN. He has also worked as an assistant director for the play, KIM SANG OK, with Seoul Theatre Festival and Stage Reading Festival written by Gyeonri Park. In the USA, he has directed THE UGLY ONE, BUT THAT’S NOT IT, TALK TO ME LIKE THE RAIN and LET ME LISTEN, as well as the short operas PHAEDRA and DIDO AND AENEAS. Myeongsik is an MFA candidate in the professional directing program at Illinois State University. He received his Master's Degree of Literature in Drama and Cinema and his Bachelor’s Degree in Acting at Cheongju University in South Korea.
MARGARET LEE is a Washington, D.C.-based director and choreographer. As former Artistic Director of Chicago troupe 33rd Street Productions, she focused on fostering cross-disciplinary creativity with artists primarily in STEM. Directing credits include: VENUS IN FUR by David Ives, COMPANY by Stephen Sondheim, and the interactive MURDER’S IN THE HEIR by Billy St. John. 2017/18 Fellowship, Shakespeare Theatre Company; Apprentice, Victory Gardens Theater. As part of her Drama League Fellowship, Margaret will be in residence at the Old Globe, San Diego, CA. leemargaret.com
New York Directing Fellowship
An immersion for four directors in directing opportunities in the professional theatre, both regionally and in New York City, culminating in a festival of their work Off-Broadway.
JENNIFER CHANG is a multidisciplinary artist whose work has been honored with an Ovation Award and the Stage Scene LA award, among others. She is a founding member and current Artistic Circle member of Chalk Repertory Theatre where she served as Artistic Producing Director and produced, directed, dramaturged and acted in numerous plays over the course of eight seasons. She has taught in the conservatory at the East West Players and guest directed at USC and at Texas State University, San Marcos for the Black and Latino Playwrights Conference and is a professional actor with many stage and screen credits. She is a member of the Stage Directors and Choreographer’s Society (SDC - associate), Screen Actors Guild (SAG-AFTRA), and Actor’s Equity Association (AEA). She is the current Head of Undergraduate Acting at UCSD. BFA - Tisch/ NYU; MFA - UCSD. Director's Lab West, National Director's Fellowship Finalist 2017.
TARA ELLIOTT is the director of critically-acclaimed shows BURQ OFF! and NOT THE ONE, and producer of the Gotham Award-winning web series “Shugs & Fats,” now in development with Amazon Studios. She translated and directed the English language workshop premiere of prize-winning Chilean play LAS ANALFABETAS and is currently developing a performance exchange with Cuban theater company Teatro El Portazo. She is the recipient of a Tow Travel Grant for research in Cuba, a CUNY Diversity Projects Development Fund Grant, and has developed plays in residencies with KO Festival of Performance and Barn Arts Collective. She has created and directed educational, community, and professional theater in Russia, Italy, France, Chile, Costa Rica, London, New York, Seoul, and various U.S. states. In NYC, her work has been seen at Walkerspace, HERE Arts, The Cherry Lane, Dixon Place, Robert Moss Theater, and The Barrow Group among others. MFA Directing, Brooklyn College.
SEONJAE KIM is originally from Seoul, South Korea. Riot Antigone, her original Riot Grrrl musical adaptation of Sophocles' tragedy, premiered at La MaMa and received productions at ANT Fest and Bryn Mawr College. She recently served as Associate Director for the immersive musical KPOP (Ars Nova/Ma-Yi/Woodshed Collective.) Her work has been seen at Atlantic Theatre Company, Baryshnikov Arts Center, Dixon Place, Williamstown, PEN/World Voices Festival, New York Theatre Barn, Prelude Festival and Chicago Fringe. She has worked with Pam MacKinnon, Bill Rauch, Stafford Arima, Lee Sunday Evans and is an alumna of Directors’ Lab West, SITI Company Summer Workshop, Williamstown Directing Corps and various residencies at La MaMa Umbria. Honors: Van Lier Fellowship (Asian American Arts Alliance) Mike Ockrent Fellowship (SCDF) and Robert Moss Fellowship (Playwrights Horizons) New Georges Affiliated Artist. BA: Northwestern
DENNIS YUEH-YEH LI
DENNIS YUEH-YEH LI earned his MA in Performance Studies at Tisch School of Arts, New York University. He works as a director, playwright, performer, and performance artist, creating productions addressing sexuality, literature, philosophy, and politics. Dennis endeavors to make powerful and transcendental performances to stimulate compelling reactions in the audience. Highlighted directing productions include BLIND (Theater for the New City), THE (NEW) TRIAL (Theater for the New City), and CIVILIZATION AND ITS DISCONTENTS (Judson Memorial Church). Currently, Dennis is an Associate Artistic Director of The Living Theatre.
Hangar Directing Fellowship
A practicum in artistic leadership of a regional theatre, where fellows lead a resident acting company in programming, directing, and producing the second stage season at the Hangar Theater in Ithaca, NY.
JAKE BECKHARD is a freelance theater director and the Director of Performance at Chinatown Soup, an ethical gallery in the Lower East Side (chinatownsoup.nyc). He is the 2016 Westport Country Playhouse Directing Fellow and a member of the 2017 Williamstown Theater Festival directing corps. His work has been seen at Theater for the New City, the Flea, the Tank, the Brick, Atlantic Stage Two, Chinatown Soup, and apartments across Manhattan. Most recently: INTUITIVE MEN, by Sofya Levitsky-Weitz at the Tank. Credits with Westport Country Playhouse, Arena Stage, and the New Group, including assistant directing for Molly Smith, Trip Cullman, Danya Taymor and Scott Elliott. www.jake-beck.com; @jakebecknation.
KYLE HADEN is a director and Equity actor who is beginning his fourth season as artistic director of the Ashland New Plays Festival in Oregon, where he has worked on workshops of HAZARDOUS MATERIALS and EDWARD III, as well as readings of NOW THIS and THE LUCKIEST PEOPLE. He has directed various productions across the country, including HAMLET (Island Shakespeare Festival) and THE MONOLOGUE PROJECT (Pittsburgh). As an actor, Kyle has performed at regional theaters nationwide, including Guthrie Theater, Shakespeare Theatre, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Arizona Theater Company, Colorado Shakespeare Festival, and Cleveland Play House, as well as various theaters in New York and Chicago. He spent three seasons in the acting company at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and is a member of their Institute Faculty. Kyle is an Assistant Professor of Acting at Carnegie Mellon University in his hometown of Pittsburgh, PA. BA: Wake Forest University, MFA: Columbia University.
IVEY LOWE is a New York based director and fight director with a focus on new works development. Recent directing includes: HAPPILY AFTER EVER (Laura Zlatos, Bloomington Playwright’s Project), EXPOSED BONE (Charlie O’ Leary, The PIT), THE ASCENT(Jon Caren, Williamstown Theater Festival), and THE QUESTION OF MY VIRGINITY (Tessa Slovis, Secret Theater). Recent developmental work includes: A staged reading of THE ALLIES (Charlie O’Leary, The Habitat), a reading of FOR THE LOVE OF (Gina Femia, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater), and a works in progress showing of UNTITLED MOMENTS (devised) in The Tank’s Brunch Residency. She has developed new works with Williamstown Theater Festival, Vertigo Theater Company, The New Georges, IAMA Theater Company, and The Flea Theater among others. She is an alumnus of The Lincoln Center Director’s Lab, Williamstown Theater Festival Directing Corps, 24 Hour Plays: Nationals, and SDC Observership Class 2016-2017. BFA: Savannah College of Art and Design.
CHRISTOPHER NÙÑEZ is currently pursuing his MFA in Directing at Florida State University. He is an early career Director with professional experience as a Manager, Producer and Designer including Associate Company Manager on THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA (dir. Hal Prince) and ROCK OF AGES (dir. Kristen Hanggi). Assistant Producer: MAGIC MIKE LIVE (dir. Channing Tatum), MAGIC REINVENTED NIGHTLY, PUPPET UP: UNCENSORED. Stage Manager: The Groundlings. He spent 10 years creating and developing with BASE Entertainment. Christopher is a passionate scholar of the history of American casino entertainment and formerly served as a Docent at the Neon Museum in Las Vegas, and is a consultant on the Broadway Center, a NYC museum currently in development. BFA in Theatre Design and Technology from FSU. www.christopherblassnunez.com
The Leo Shull New Musicals Fellowship
The Leo Shull Fellowship for New Musicals places an early-career director as part of the creative teams of two new musicals at SigWorks, the developmental workshop and festival at the Signature Theatre in Arlington, VA. The fellow is also mentored by Sigworks director Joe Calarco before returning to New York to direct their own presentation of new musical scenes.
KEMAR JEWEL is an international director and choreographer from Philadelphia, who became a viral internet sensation after he released his video "Voguing Train" (2014). Kemar holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Theatre with a concentration in Directing from Temple University, and has since toured Europe working with celebrities and choreographed a music video for the legendary DJ Bob Sinclair. Kemar’s projects have garnered over six million views across the myriad of social media platforms and have been featured on Huffington Post, TIME Magazine, FOX News and in film festivals across the globe. In theatre, he most recently directed LEGENDARY for Philadelphia’s Underground Arts and SONGS FOR MARSHA at the Helen Mills Theatre in New York City.