Dr. Maria Patrice Amon is a Director, Producer, Scholar, and artistic leader.
She is launched the Latinx New Play Festival at San Diego Repertory Theatre and continues to produce the festival with the La Jolla Playhouse.
As an Associate Artistic Director at San Diego Repertory Theatre she produced staged reading, the led Amigos del Rep, created community engagement events, developed new relationships with playwrights and worked on season selection.
Maria Patrice is a co-founder and co-Artistic Director of TuYo Theatre, a professional Latinx Theatre Company in San Diego. In this role she runs financial management, board relations, institutional development, and artistic production.
Maria Patrice has a PhD in Drama from University of California, Irvine with emphasis in Critical Theory and Chicano Studies and a Juris Doctorate from California Western School of Law. She attended the University of San Diego and double majored in Political Science and Philosophy with a minor in Peace and Justice Studies. She teaches theatre at CSU San Marcos as an Assistant Professor.
My path to theatre has been unique: I come from a trajectory set by both the hard work of my family and an accident of fate. My brother was in a near-fatal drunk driving accident when we started high school and I decided to become a lawyer and judge to spare others from feeling the marginalization that I felt in the law. I quickly discovered that legal practice was not my fit--I wanted to tell stories that empowered and discovered our shared humanity. I shifted to theatre because in theatre we have the tool to bring our nuanced and full depth of humanity to the stage, we move beyond marginalization through our shared storytelling.
As a director I am drawn to work centering on strong BIPOC women and I use my artistic practice to create opportunities for underrepresented artists. As a practice I strive to work predominantly with designers and collaborators of color and women+, I advocate for emerging directors of color as assistant directors on my projects, and I prioritize sharing recommendations of BIPOC artists.
My directorial style is collaborative, honest, human-centered, audacious, and vivid. I thrive in new work development and text analysis, I love working with collaborators to break down text and develop clear character arcs. My rehearsal rooms are laboratories in which we as a team of artists can experiment to create theatre and performance that speaks to the intrinsic nature of humanity, to our shared experiences and insights. I strive to be approachable and clear with my notes and value the contributions of my collaborators. I love to create richly detailed worlds with collaborators that are vibrant platforms for storytelling. In my recent production of A Skeptic and A Bruja I used lighting and illusions to craft a magical world and worked with the playwright on this world premiere to develop the balance between four distinct characters and create a strong ensemble of women facing generational conflict. Audaciousness was at the heart of my production of On Her Shoulders We Stand. For this multi-sensory, individualized immersive experience project I brought audiences into forgotten memories of my community through seven fully staged rooms.
I have worked in regional theaters and community based theaters both locally in San Diego and across the US. I have directed a broad range of work including new works, classics, musicals, and world premieres. I have also directed fully supported in-person productions, workshop productions, online-productions, staged readings, and workshops. Locally I have worked with La Jolla Playhouse, San Diego Repertory Theatre, Playwrights Center, Diversionary Theatre, Moxie Theatre, and TuYo Theatre. Nationally, I have worked with Urbanite Theatre in Sarasota Florida, Passage Theatre in Trenton New Jersey, Kitchen Dog Theatre in Dallas Texas, Roundabout Theatre in Washington DC, Su Teatro in Denver Colorado, and Theatre Lab in Boca Raton Florida. I have also directed at educational institutions including UCSD, CSUSM, and UC Irvine.
From my broad range of experiences I have forged an artistic commitment towards respect and inclusion. My rehearsal rooms are laboratories in which we as a team of artists can experiment to create theatre and performance that speaks to the intrinsic nature of humanity, to our shared experiences and insights. Following Dr. Sharell Luckett’s innovative approach in Black Acting Methods, I recognize the importance of centering social activism and elevating cultural plurality in my directing work.