Jesse Graham Galas (she, her) identifies as an actor, director, and professor of the performing arts. With 7 years combined experience as a professor of Theatre, 5 years experience as a Director and Assistant Director of both plays and musicals, and 28 years professional experience on the stage, she brings both crafted techniques and real world experience to the table, currently serving as the Assistant Professor of Musical Theatre at High Point University.
She earned her BA in Theatre from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, her MFA in Acting from Ohio University and her Teaching Certificate in Michael Chekhov Physical Acting Technique from Great Lakes Michael Chekhov Consortium. She continues to present workshops at SETC and other venues in Musical Theatre, Acting, Movement, and Stage Combat. She also serves as a Stage Combat and Intimacy Director for many shows, as she continues her education in intimacy choreography and consent-based practices in the classroom through Theatrical Intimacy Educators.
Acting Credits include: National/International Tours - (2011 - 2020) My Fair Lady
"Mrs. Pearce", Guys & Dolls
"General Cartwright", An American in Paris
"Madame Baurel" - Big League Productions. Regional/Summer Stock: A Comedy of Tenors
"Maria", An Inspector Calls
"Mrs. Birling", Bright Star
"Mama Murphy", See How They Run
"Miss Skillon" - Okoboji Summer Theatre (2022-23).
Directing Credits include: The Seagull
, Troy University; Songs for a New World
, The Women of Lockerbie
, Little Women, the Musical
, Coker University; Lost Girl
, High Point University; The Addams Family, a New Musical
, High Point University (upcoming Fall 2023).
As an actor, she follows two quotes, "Acting is living truthfully in imaginary circumstances"~ Sanford Meisner and "There is no Art without Joy"~ Michael Chekhov. While most of her early work was primarily in musicals, after moving to NYC in 2010 she branched into Shakespeare and film. She has played mandolin for over 10 years, and enjoys the challenge of bringing each unique character to life.
As a director, she encourages collaborative storytelling between cast and designers in both classical and contemporary styles. From blackbox "page-to-stage" small projects to mainstage musicals, she believes theatre as an art form is essential to humanity and every story gives both the audience and the artist an opportunity to grow.
As a professor, she strives to create a brave environment where her students feel free to risk while discovering and acting on their impulses. She has taught many courses (Acting, Voice, Movement, Acting the Song, Dramatic Literature, Playscript Analysis, Film Criticism, The Business of Acting, etc.) at several universities (Troy University, Marietta College, Kennesaw State University, Coker University, and now High Point University).