Dragon Productions Theatre Welcomes Karen Altree Piemme to Run 2nd Stages Series

Dragon Productions Theatre Company will welcome Karen Altree Piemme to the newly created role of Associate Director of the Dragon 2nd Stages Series. Dragon's 2nd Stages series launched in 2014 as a program designed to give Bay Area artists the opportunity to fully produce their passion projects with funding and mentorship with Dragon's staff. The series is intended to develop new local theater makers with the support of an already established theater company. About to open the third show in the inaugural 2nd Stages season, Dragon is committed to growing this program for the future with the support of a local theater maker with exceptional talent and a breadth of experience in the field who can focus solely on this exciting new initiative.

Karen Altree Piemme is an accomplished director, actor, dramaturg, workshop facilitator and acting instructor, specializing in community access to the arts. Ms. Piemme spent 21 years with San Jose Repertory Theatre, where she was the Director of Outreach and Resident Dramaturg. She also served as the Director of the Red Ladder Theatre Company, the nationally-acclaimed, award-winning resident outreach company, which empowers disenfranchised populations in our community by helping them develop positive life-skills through the art form of theatre. Ms. Piemme is proud of the positive impact Red Ladder has had on the community as it works to meet the needs of the diverse populations the program serves. Through her expertise in the field, Ms. Piemme has been asked to mentor other artists through the process of creating their own programs based on Red Ladder's philosophy and methodology, and has successfully launched two other companies on this model. Ms. Piemme's facility for innovative program design has led her to develop a wide range of interactive arts programs which have been lauded by others in the field of arts education and have been replicated by theatres nationwide.

As an active Bay Area theatre artist and community leader, Ms. Piemme served for two years as the Executive Director of the San Jose Leadership Council. She has directed productions, conducted dramaturgy, taught classes and delivered workshops locally, nationally and internationally for over twenty-five years. In 2011 she received the Champion of Arts Education Award from the City of San Jose, and in 2012 she was honored as one of the "35 Faces" of Theatre Bay Area. She serves on the Theatre Services Committee for Theatre Bay Area, is on Playwrights Foundation's play selection committee for the Bay Area Playwrights Festival, teaches classes at San Jose State University and is a member of Actors' Equity Association. Ms. Piemme was educated in both New York and London, and received her degree in Acting & Directing (graduating Magna Cum Laude) from Syracuse University.

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