Susan Stroupe is a theater maker, primarily working as a director, ensemble deviser, and teaching artist, who specializes in interdisciplinary and devised works of theater, often performed in non-traditional spaces. Throughout her career, Stroupe has also worked as a director, performer, writer, puppeteer, teacher, and collaborator in professional and professional community-based projects, with actors and nonactors of many ages and many abilities and disabilities. Focus and passion lies in theater in nontraditional spaces or arrangements, collaboratively devising pieces or working with scripts that challenge norms of race, gender, and genre.
Artist Statement: Theater, as a live art form that combines many artistic media, must always be in response to the community around it, not to give answers, but give space and time to explore complex questions. My role as a director and community member in Baltimore is to contribute what I can strengthening and empowering our theatrical community, by engaging in work that expands our collective imagination and mythology, whether by creating new work or revisiting "old" work with new eyes and/or new voices. In my professional theatrical work, I strive to create a rehearsal room of empowered actors, designers, and crew who can grow together and work together to connect to their audiences in the most meaningful and powerful way possible. In my teaching artist work, primarily with Baltimore City students, I strive to empower students to discover the amazing creative and critical thinking skills they already possess, and to guide them along their journey of theatrical creation. Theater is a whole brain and whole body activity, and the skills we use in theater like empathy, observation, problem solving, and joy, can help cultivate a student's sense of identity, curiousity, and community, and give them confidence and skills to go into any profession they choose.
My vision for my theatrical work is always to remind everyone involved, both performers and audience, and myself, of the complexities of humanity, and how as humans, our primary way of progressing forward is through storytelling--intimately, in the same space, on the same journey, together.