Theresa Mitchell (New Play Lab Director)

Theresa Mitchell (she/her) graduated from Independence Community College with an Associate of Arts Degree in Theatre in 1975. She went on to graduate from the University of Kansas (1979) with a Master of Arts and Utah (1984), where she earned a Master of Fine Arts in Directing. She is a Professor Emeritus from Emporia State University, from which she retired in 2019. During her tenure at ESU, two plays, which she directed, were selected for presentation at the Region 5 American College Theatre Festival. The first to be selected was FIVE WOMEN WEARING THE SAME DRESS by Alan Ball in 2009. That year she was chosen as a Directing Fellow from Region 5, and went to The Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Part of her fellowship was to nurture student playwrights and directors, the other part was to direct an original 10-minute student play for Festival production. At the National Festival, Theresa was selected as Outstanding Director in the new student play competition. The other production Theresa directed, which was chosen for presentation at Region 5 ACTF was a full-length student written play, THE TREEHOUSE EFFECT by Mark Warner and Brandon Jensen in 2015. Bringing new plays to the stage has always been a fulfilling opportunity for Theresa. In addition to teaching and directing at Emporia State University, she was a theatre educator at Kent State University and Webster University Conservatory of Theatre Arts, She is the author of Movement: From Person to Actor to Character, which was published in 1999. Theresa is married to Mark Mitchell and they moved back to Independence in 2020.