First things first — it's Seth BOAKley. Rhymes with Oakley. Why?! Not totally sure. It just does.
Over the past decade, Seth has established himself as an original voice in the American theater. He is equally confident as an adapter — translating to the stage fiction such as George Saunders’ story Jon and Roberto Bolaño’s megalithic novel 2666, as well as writing original plays — deeply felt dramatic and multimedia work such as Wilderness, the musical February House (a collaboration with composer/songwriter Gabriel Kahane), and the puppet opera Laika’s Coffin.
As a director, he has acquired a reputation for visually compelling and imaginative interpretations of contemporary plays, and for guiding new play development and world premiere productions with rigor and care. He is equally confident with the texts of German neo-expressionists like Marius von Mayenburg (The Ugly One) and Ewald Palmetshofer (hamlet is dead. no gravity) as with new American plays like Lauren Yee’s Samsara, Philip Dawkins’ Failure: A Love Story, Jason Grote’s 1001 and Civilization (all you can eat) and (with Devon de Mayo) The Twins Would Like To Say.
Beyond theater, his creative work includes interdisciplinary projects such as “The Picture Book”, a community based visual arts and storytelling spectacle in rural Donegal, Ireland; as well as video direction, event design, and onstage emceeing (with and without fat suit, evening gown, etc.)
He once dressed up as a skeleton for the Obamas’ first Halloween party. He made a clown show with a Mexican troupe that toured a maximum security prison. He is known to get the dance floor going at weddings.
Winner of two ‘Jeff’ awards for Best Adaptation (Jon and 2666), and a graduate of Brown University, Seth teaches at the University of Chicago, and is an artist in residence at the Goodman.