Elena Araoz is a stage director of theater and opera.
The New York Times has praised her productions as “striking,” “primal,” “wild,” “stirring,” and “refreshingly natural” and The Boston Globe as “riveting,” “dreamy,” and “vivid.” Of her production of Octavio Solis’ Prospect, which just enjoyed a critically acclaimed run in NYC with Boundless Theatre Company, NY Theatre Guide said, “Director Elena Araoz has masterfully created tension lines that are pulled taut between the characters to almost snapping point. She doesn’t let the charged atmosphere of danger slip, and keeps us strapped into the seat of the roller coaster with no escape from the exhilarating ride. She sticks her finger into the open wound of each of the characters’ vulnerability, inspiring formidable performances.”
She just directed for the Great Plains Theatre Conference in Omaha, Naomi Wallace’s The Retreating World. The Drama League also recently named Araoz the inaugural Beatrice Terry Artist-In-Residence where she completed her play Plastic Drastic (an environmentally-aware music-theatre commedia adaptation of The Odyssey, Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner, and Hansel and Gretel) which she also directed for Omaha’s Rose Theatre in February 2016.
Araoz recently directed the collaboratively-created Off-Broadway piece Architecture of Becoming by Kara Corthron, Sarah Gancher, Virginia Grise, Dipika Guha, Lauren Yee (Women’s Project at City Center). Other Off-Broadway productions include the American premieres of two Carl Djerassi plays.
Internationally, she directed the world premiere of Li Tong Chen’s The Power in Beijing, the first English-language play commercially produced in Beijing, A Midsummer Night’s Dream for Prague Shakespeare Festival in the Czech Republic, and the world premiere of Jaclyn Villano’s Unanswered, We Ride for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Scotland (which was also seen at 59E59 and Last Frontier Theatre Conference).
Other directing credits include Mac Wellman’s plays Wu World Woo and Horrocks and Toutatis too (Sleeping Weazel at ArtsEmerson) and Muazzez(Great Plains Theatre Conference), Natalia Naman’s Lawnpeople (Cherry Lane Mentor Project), Monika Bustamante’s Thirst: a spell for Christabel(HERE), The Price (Northern Stage), Naomi Wallace’s The Fever Chart (Underground Railway Theatre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (SUNY and Geva Theatre Center), Don DeLillo’s The Word for Snow with Kathleen Chalfont (CUNY), and Jaclyn Villano’s The Company We Keep (Boston Playwrights’ Theatre).
Opera credits include La traviata (New York City Opera at BAM’s Howard Gilman Opera House), Lucia di Lammermoor (Opera North), Falstaff with Sir Thomas Allen (Brooklyn Philharmonic at BAM’s Howard Gilman Opera House), and choreography for Latin Lovers arranged by Steven Blier (Glimmerglass Opera).
New play workshops include Welcome to Fear City by Kara Corthron (Labyrinth Theatre’s Barn Series), Tiny People by Christopher Oscar Peña (Two River Theatre), River of Gruel by Sibyl Kempson (New Dramatists), Megastasis by Kia Corthron (New York Theatre Workshop, Yale University, New Works Brooklyn), Madame Ho by Eugenie Chan (Great Plains Theatre Conference), Light Creatures by Jessica Almasy (Personal Space Theatrics),Obra Negra by Flavio González Mello and translated by Carmen Rivera (Lark Play Development Center’s Mexico/US Exchange), Good People by Maria Alexandria Beech with versions in both English and Spanish (Two River Theatre), and Hilary Bettis’ plays Ghosts of Lote Bravo (Lark Playwright’s Week, Repertorio Español), Dakota Atoll (New York Theatre Workshop), Mexico (Project Y), and Alligator (Great Plains Theatre Conference).