caryn desai (Artistic Director/Producer) is an award-winning director with awards and nominations from LA Drama Critics Circle, LA Weekly, Drama-Logue, Robby, Ovation and NAACP for her productions. Recent works: Red, Ghost-Writer, God of Carnage, The Old Settler, Loving Repeating, The Clean House, Backwards in High Heels, and Dinah Was (most L.A. Ovation award nominations that year). Selected credits: “Master Harold” … and the boys, Visiting Mr. Green, Having Our Say, Greetings, Beast on the Moon, Jar the Floor, Home, A Shayna Maidel, A Raisin in the Sun, Shakuntala (also adapted by her), Rashomon, Our Town, The Importance of Being Earnest, A Piece of My Heart, Joe Turner’s Come and Gone, Contradictions (her original work), Lysistrata, Antigone, Agamemnon, and Oedipus. Musicals: Raisin (LADCC “Best Production”), Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Swinging on a Star, Once on This Island, Bed and Sofa, Frankenstein, Lies and Legends, Tapestry, and Romance/Romance. caryn is a member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society.
She has an MFA in directing from UC Irvine, a BA from CSU, Long Beach in acting and directing, and a certificate from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, London. She also has certificates in Arts Administration, Marketing and Fundraising. With a full Fellowship, she completed an Executive Program at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business as one of fifty arts leaders in the nation selected for the program. Additionally, she completed an Executive Coaching Program through the Hudson Institute, Santa Barbara.
She has served on grant panels for the county and city and as a speaker/panelist for the SRO Theatre Conference at USC on Best Practices, the Technical Theatre Conference about the role of a director, and more. She represented ICT as a National Participant for the Listening Post Project with Johns Hopkins University and was named "Enterprising Woman in the Arts" in Long Beach. caryn was honored with the “We Can Do It” Award from the Long Beach Rosie the Riveter Foundation and was nominated as an Amazing Woman in the Arts. She has taught college for more than twenty years and received the Distinguished Alumni Award from Long Beach City College. She served as a Dramaturgical Responder for the graduate playwriting students at USC. Most recently she was elected as Vice Chair of the LA Producers League for Mid-Sized Theatres.