Theatre Arts

Sal Trapani – Professor

Sal Trapani (Professor: Acting, Directing, Playmaking with Children, Devised Theatre, Theatre History) is a director, writer and composer.

His work has been seen at many New York, regional and international venues including Minetta Lane (Raft of the Medusa), New York Theatre Workshop (The Events), The Lucille Lortel, Circle Rep, Westside Theater, Circle in the Square, Irish Arts Center, La Mama, Lincoln Center, Playwrights Horizons, Hudson Guild, Ensemble Studio Theatre, 52nd St. Project, The Playroom, Yale Rep (New Haven International Festival of the Arts), Long Wharf, The Powerhouse (Los Angeles), Bay Area Playwrights Festival (Associate AD, Six Seasons), Williamstown, Mass MOCA, Cleveland Museum, Holland Festival, Teatro Centro (Ecuador), Gilded Balloon (Scotland) and the Klaaver Festival (Estonia).

In December, 2021, he directed Of Pigs and Pianos, a one-woman show starring world-renown trans classical pianist, Sarah Davis Beuchner. The show was performed at TheatreLab in NYC and received a rave review in the Times. It will be performed in Minneapolis in October.

In the Spring of 2022, at Western, Sal directed Metamorphoses by Mary Zimmerman. In the time of Covid, Sal directed and curated an online streaming event, The Covid Decameron; sixteen short pieces inspired by Boccaccio’s work from 1350. Prior to that, he directed for streaming, Dognap on Dekalb, an original play, (seen as part of a streaming series of new works by writers from marginalized and underrepresented groups) by Ben Colon.

Just before Covid, he directed Hand to God.  Prior to that, he adapted, directed and composed the music for Ubu – An Absurdist Immersive Gran Guignol Musical for which he received a CSU-AAUP Grant.

Sal has been at Western for thirty years. During that time, he helped to establish the New York Showcase and participation in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, to great critical acclaim, premiering his musical adaptations of classics including The Tempest, Romeo & Juliet, Lysistrata, Macbeth, Twelfth Night, Antigone, Orpheus, Food: A Sixteen Course Musical and a multi-media adaptation of An Enemy of the People. During the run of Lysistrata in Edinburgh, he and his students were asked to perform in David Grieg’s award winning show, The Events at The Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh. Subsequently, the show was brought to the U.S. and Sal and his students reprised their roles at Yale Rep, as part of the International Festival of Art and Ideas and then the following year at The New York Theatre Workshop.

Other directing credits include: Our Lady of 121st Street., The Green Bird, Spring Awakening, Three Sisters, Tommy, Flea in Her Ear, Suburbia, Front Page, Hay Fever, The Hot L Baltimore, Distance from Here, Fiddler and The Threepenny Opera.

He is a member of New Circle Theatre Company, and recently directed Robert Wray’s Sam’s Lament. He is currently working on Milk and Blood — A Modern Hip- Hop Opera, based on Aeschylus’ The Libation Bearers. He is also working on a new spoken word musical about John Lennon, with Randy Noojin. As an actor he has appeared on Law and Order and One Life to Live and many commercials. His film work includes Enemy Territory, Feedback and others.

M.F.A. from the University of Southern California. Member, Stage Directors and Choreographers (SDC) and SAG-AFTRA.


Contact Information
Sal Trapani, Professor
Department of Theatre Arts


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