Area of Study
Class of 2021
Emma Cordray (She/Her) is a director and dramaturg from Columbus, Ohio, where her parents put a keyboard in her hands before she could walk. Since those first noisy songs, she’s chased music from one medium to another—from chamber music to concert piano to synchronized swimming to musical theater to dance. Along the way, she picked up an insatiable curiosity around storytelling that’s taken her across novels, songwriting, podcasting, and new work development. In her time at CMU, she’s directed and/or dramaturged 7+ world premieres, spearheaded development processes for many new musicals, and founded an educational group for writers. Her recent directing work includes The Beach (Kate Vargish, CMU), Macbeth (Braving the Bard), Dance Light (CMU), you’ll thank me for everything one day (Rebecca Hodge, CMU), and Birds & Beansprouts (Joe Young, CMU). Emma has evaluated scripts for the O’Neill’s National Playwrights Conference, Austin Film Festival, and Kitchen Dog Theater and has interned with the Pittsburgh CLO and Signature Theater Company. She is a former apprentice with One Year Lease Theater Company and a 2020 graduate of the National Theater Institute’s Advanced Directing program. Her current projects include new musicals BL!NK (Grace Ward), Esperanza Rising (Jimena Caballero, from Pam Muñoz Ryan’s novel), Birds and Beansprouts (Joe Young), and Rebel (Olivia Wilson). Outside of rehearsal, you can find her hiking, rock climbing, singing, making music, or playing board games with friends. After graduating, Emma will be a 2021-2022 Fulbright Scholar in Spain.
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