There’s tremendous synergy among this trio of theater professionals who ignite the imagination.
A prize-winning playwright with training as an actor, Ki Gottberg directs and produces a range of theatrical productions in addition to teaching acting and playwriting. She received a playwriting fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts along with numerous commissions and awards for her work. Gottberg, a Seattle University faculty member since 1988, says both acting and playwriting call for a voice of authenticity about the intricacies of life.
Scenic designer Carol Wolfe Clay enjoys manipulating theatrical space and creating that powerful moment when the audience first experiences the visual world of the play. Since joining the SU faculty in 1986, she designed more than 50 productions. Her scenic work is a regular feature of many Seattle theater productions, including six professional shows in a recent 18-month span, and she brings her students along as assistants whenever possible.
Rosa Joshi is a director who likes digging into plays that explore the extremes of human behavior, whether classical or contemporary. Her all-female theater collective, upstart crow, casts only women actors, an unusual twist for what Joshi acknowledges is a male-dominated profession. Joshi, a member of the SU faculty since 2000, credits Clay and Gottberg with being especially formative to her career.
The three regularly collaborate on projects, including a September 2012 production of Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus, which Rosa directed, Ki acted and Carol designed. Gottberg and Clay both won Footlight awards from the Seattle Times, Gottberg for a 2009 solo show and Clay for best set in 2011. Gottberg and Clay have collaborated on many projects, most recently the original new play with puppets, little world, which won a grant from the City of Seattle mayor’s office in 2011.
All have a hand in professional theater and find opportunities for their students in off-campus theatrical productions. Gottberg says Seattle-area theater groups are partial to SU students as interns because of their breadth of experience working with professionals in the field. Clay, Gottberg and Joshi are artistic collaborators whose work has brought significant attention to Seattle University’s contributions to cultural life in Seattle.