Who is Leah Maddrie?
Leah Maddrie has been a house manager, a costume shop crew member, an assistant stage manager, a stage manager, a managing director, a development director, and for ten years made a living as a professional actor. She really wanted to write for the theatre, so in the last few years, she has made it a priority to create work that reflects her experiences and perspective, in the process hoping to create opportunities in all areas of the theatre for people from underrepresented groups.
Leah is a member of The Dramatists Guild. In June 2009, Leah received a commission from the Ensemble Studio Theatre’s Sloan Foundation project for Dark Energy Stuns Universe, which had a reading April 26, 2010 at 7:00 p.m. in the First Light Festival. Her full-length play Chasing Heaven was a 2008 O’Neill National Playwright’s Conference semi-finalist, and was read at LaMama in February 2010. Her ten-minute musical The Awkward Stage (with composer Jonathan Breit) received its New York Premiere in November 2008, and a song from the show was featured in the cabaret concert Lots of Really Great Stuff at the Laurie Beechman Theatre in September 2008. Her lyrics to the song Fallingwater from the song cycle Monongahela Rising (written with composer Waddy Thompson) were selected to be in the top five finalists for the first WNYC Soundcheck lyric contest in 2008, and Monongahela Rising was chosen to be performed as part of the Composers Now marathon February 22 at Symphony Space, and in Orfeo Duo’s new works initiative in March of 2010.
Leah has a Bachelor’s in Arts Management from Eastern Michigan University, an MFA in Acting from the University of California, San Diego and an MA in Arts Administration from Teachers College, Columbia University. She has performed in theaters coast to coast, from the Mark Taper Forum in L.A. to the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis to New York Shakespeare Festival. At New York Shakespeare Festival, in the last years of Joe Papp’s tenure, she understudied Tracey Ullman’s Kate and played The Widow in a production of Taming of the Shrew that was directed by A.J. Antoon, whose televised Much Ado About Nothing from the Festival had inspired her to become an actor. She has appeared in a range of plays across the country including Death and the Maiden; Henry IV, Part 1; Miss Evers’ Boys; The Waiting Room; The Boyfriend and Tintypes.