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Deb Alley and Tom Quinn.

Photo courtesy of Dylan Paul.  ​

Like most theatre folk, I've had a lot of different jobs.  I worked for DramaSearch Production Co. when I started out.  We were a two-person team - writing and producing works for historic sites on the east coast.  After a few years, we moved on and started Columbus Ensemble Theatre, where I functioned mostly as a Managing Director but also as an occasional actor and director.  After CET had run its course, I was hired as Director of Children's Theatre at Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse... where I also served as Production Manager.  This led to management gigs on three national tours.  

My association with the Illinois Shakespeare Festival began in 1995 when I was hired to stage manage Henry IV, part 2.  I worked as Production Manager for the Festival for 5 years, before becoming Associate Artistic Director in 2006.  I served as Artistic Director from 2007 to 2012.

I have directed a number of shows at the Illinois Shakespeare Festival - Much Ado, Julius Caesar, Midsummer, The Tempest, Winter's Tale, and The Rivals.  Recent work at the Texas Shakespeare Festival includes Cymbeline, Twelfth Night, and The Merry Wives of Windsor.  In addition, I direct regularly for regional venues.  My favorite productions include: Pride's Crossing, Othello, Little Shop of Horrors, Servant of Two Masters, King Lear, Skriker, The Arkansas Bear, Cabaret, Laramie Project, and Caucasian Chalk Circle.


I was on the faculty at Illinois State University from 1999 to 2013 and was the head of the MFA Directing Program my last six years.


I taught at Texas State University from 2013 to 2022, serving as chair of the Department of Theatre and Dance for five of those years.  I retired from teaching in January of 2023.

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