Kristin Horton is a director primarily interested in developing new work, re-imagining classics, and producing public events that create forums for dialogue and action concerning urban democracy and the arts. Her new play collaborations have appeared at the Contemporary American Theater Festival, Working Theater, HERE, NYC Summerstage, William Inge Playwrights’ Festival, The Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis, Workhaus Collective, among others. She has a long-time association with the Lark Play Development Center, where she has directed as part of its many programs, including the US-Mexico Exchange, Playwright’s Week, and Barebones Series. At the Lark, she’s worked with a diverse range of writers including Rajiv Joseph, David Henry Hwang, Samuel D. Hunter, Lisa Kron, Chisa Hutchinson, Katori Hall, Steve Drukman, and Lloyd Suh. Horton began her theater career in the mid-90s as a member of the Living Stage Theatre Company, the groundbreaking social change theater of Arena Stage. In DC, she also produced adult education programs for the Kennedy Center’s 1999-2000 season. A recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts/TCG Career Development Program for Directors she has also received fellowships from the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and Sundance Theater Lab. She is the recipient of the 2013-2014 Gallatin Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, an award which recognizes educators for their outstanding teaching; their ability to inspire their students; a pedagogical approach that is creative and rigorous; expert advising and mentoring skills; and contributions to their field. She currently serves as a Faculty Fellow in Residence at Carlyle Court.
Teaching and Research Interests
directing; new play development; Shakespeare in performance; W. B. Yeats; Caryl Churchill; religion and theater; process drama; puppetry; theater for social change; cross-cultural dialogue
B.A. Religion, Emory University, 1994 M.F.A. Directing, University of Iowa, 2003
Professor Horton is the recipient of a 2016-2017 National Endowment for the Arts Project Grant for Breaking Bread, a participatory performance she is developing in collaboration with playwright Chisa Hutchinson and Working Theater. She recently directed a reading of Hutchinson's The Subject at the New Brooklyn Theater in May.
Along with playwright and NoPassport founder Caridad Svich, Professor Horton co-curated and co-organized the 2016 NoPassport Theatre Alliance Conference: Dreaming the Americas: Who Is It For? Spectatorship and the Body Politic, which was held at Gallatin in March 2016.
Professor Horton directed the world premiere of Dead & Breathing by Chisa Hutchinson at the Contemporary American Theater Festival. She and Hutchinson have been commissioned as part of a playwright/director team by Working Theater to create a play inspired by and about Staten Island as part of The Five Boroughs/One City Project. A workshop of the play, featuring the actors Robbie McCauley and Arthur French, was presented at the Abingdon Theater in May 2015.
In the fall of 2014, Professor Horton produced the Roman Tragedies Festival, an examination of Shakespeare’s Roman tragedies through a series of performances, readings, conversations and screenings. As part of the festival, she directed a devised adaptation of Shakespeare's long poem, "The Rape of Lucrece." The festival also featured collaborations and partnerships with the Urban Democracy Lab, Fiasco Theater, and Show Us Womanish, an all-female student performance ensemble.
Along with Matthew Gregory, she organized a staged reading and a panel discussion of Sulayman Al-Bassam’s play The Al-Hamlet Summit in March 2014 at Gallatin. She directed Hamlet for the Riverside Theatre in the Park in Iowa City, IA in April 2014. Horton has been an Artistic Associate of Riverside Theatre, one of Iowa’s few professional theater companies, for over a decade. In the fall of 2013, she directed a reading of Christopher Cartmill’s Home Land for New York’s Theater East. She continued her affiliation with the Lark Play Development Center by serving as a member of the Middle East America Initiative. She directed the world premiere of Chisa Hutchinson’s Dead & Breathing at the Contemporary American Theater Festival during the summer of 2014.