Jane Eyre production showing one woman with arms over head and another laying on a table

Rin Allen and Margaret Ivy in Jane Eyre, Directed by KJ Sanchez; Photo: Mikki Shafner

KJ Sanchez, Associate Professor of Playwriting and Directing

KJ Sanchez

KJ Sanchez

KJ Sanchez is the founder and CEO of American Records, dedicated to theatre that chronicles our time; theatre that serves as a bridge between people. Her most recent play, Cincinnati King, which she also directed, received its world premiere production at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park. As a playwright, Sanchez’s been produced at Berkeley Rep, Playmakers Rep, Asolo Rep, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Two River Theater Company, Baltimore’s Center Stage, Frontera Rep, Round House, Cornerstone Theater Company and Off-Broadway at Urban Stages and Here Arts, among others. Her plays are published by Playscripts. Sanchez has directed across the country, including Off-Broadway at the Gene Frankel Theatre, The Goodman Theatre, Hartford Stage, Huntington Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville and Milwaukee Rep. As an actor, Sanchez performed at the Brooklyn Academy of Music and internationally including the Toga-Mura Festival in Japan and the Ibero Americano Festival in Bogota, Columbia. She is the voice of many characters on the cartoons Dora the Explorer and Go Diego Go. Sanchez is a Fox Fellow, Douglass Wallop Fellow and a recipient of the 2014 Rella Lossy Playwright Award as well as the National Endowment for the Arts/TCG Career Development Program.


Advanced Director, Directing Methods and Practices, Rehearsal Practices, Viewpoints Training, Undergraduate DIrecting, Documentary Playwriting, Spectacle as a Political Tool (UGS)

Areas of Expertise

Directing for the Theatre, playwriting. 

Recent Publications

  • Life in the Middle, Playscripts Inc. (2012)
  • "Joining Forces," American Theatre Magazine July/August (2011)
  • ReEntry, Playscripts Inc. (2010)
  • "A Night at the Opera" (co-author Tommer Peterson), Grantmakers in the Arts' GIA Reader Vol. 23 No. 1 (Winter, 2012)

Recent and Current Works

  • Will direct Quixote Nuevo by Octavio Solis at Hartford Stage (Hartford, CT), Huntington Theatre Company (Boston, MA) and The Alley Theatre (Houston, TX)
  • Directed Polly Teale's adaptation of Jane Eyre for Cincinnati Playhouse in the Part and Milwaukee Rep (2017)
  • Writing and directing (dis)placed, a commission for The Guthrie Theater (present)
  • Writing and directing Mama's Empanadas, a commission for Milwaukee Rep (present)
  • Directing the world premiere of Vichet Chum's K'nyum for Merrimack Rep (opening January 2018)
  • Directing Octavio Solis' Quixote at Cal Shakes (opening June 2018)

What do you enjoy most about being a part of the UT Theatre and Dance community?

I love being part of a department that is: 1. Collegial and full of good cheer. 2. Fearless and hard-working. 3. Working ALL THE TIME - faculty, staff and students, this is a place full of individuals who never tire of new work. 4. Full of good people who understand that a creative life, a fulfilling educational life and a healthy personal life can all go hand-in-hand.

What is your favorite thing about Austin?

The green, the lakes and river and creeks, the tacos (requisite answer), the locally-sourced food, the music, the music, the music and the grackles (I really do like those crazy birds).

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