Ellicia Elliott (she/her) is the Founding Artistic Director of The Rude Mechanicals, Eastern Washington's premier Shakespeare theatre company. She holds an MFA in Directing from the University of Idaho, an MA in Theatre Production, and a BA in Language Arts and Theatre Arts Education, both from Central Washington University. Her most recent work includes serving as dramaturg and directing consultant for Lauren Gunderson's A Room in the Castle, executive producer for the film This is Their Land, directing Shakespeare's As You Like It and The Thanksgiving Play by Larissa FastHorse (The Rude Mechanicals), Ada and the Engine by Lauren Gunderson (Walla Walla University), and Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors (Woodward Shakespeare Festival, Fresno). In the Summer of 2020, Ellicia produced Idris Goodwin's FREE PLAY: Open Source Scripts Toward an Antiracist Tomorrow and created an online season for The Rude Mechanicals, available on YouTube, of new works and Shakespeare-inspired pieces focusing on equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility.
Before starting The Rude Mechanicals, Ellicia directed over fifty productions in educational theatre programs, community theatres, and at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. She taught in the public school system for fourteen years, and worked with the students in the Benton County Juvenile Justice Center, teaching Shakespeare, playwriting, and leading improvisation workshops. From 2020-2021, Ellicia was an adjunct professor at Walla Walla University and she is currently a curriculum consultant for middle school and high school theatre educators. She is a proud member of artEquity and the Educational Theatre Association (EDTA). Ellicia's newest roles in theatre education are as an adjudicator/respondent for organizations such as EDTA and the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF) and as a Board member for the Washington State Thespians.
Recognitions for Ellicia's work include Directors Lab West (2020), Shakespeare's Globe Directing Studio (2016), artEquity Facilitator Training with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival (2015), the Teaching Artist Training (TAT) Lab Fellowship with Seattle Rep (2011), The Outstanding Educator award (2014), two Educational Outreach awards (2008, 2012), and Outstanding Direction of a Musical (2008), all from The 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle, and the Theatre of Puget Sound’s Young Playwright’s Award (2001).
I have worked with professionals across the country from San Francisco to Chicago to NY. Ellicia Elliott is the real deal. Her artistic vision, education, training, tenacity, creativity, and respect for art and artists is laudable. Elliott continues to attract top regional talent and growing national attention for The Rude Mechanicals Shakespeare Company in Eastern Washington.
- Cynthia Vaughn, company member 2015-2018