Erik Abbott is a director, actor, playwright, dramaturge, and theatre scholar. He made his professional theatrical debut as an actor at fifteen and has since worked on well over one hundred productions. Erik has worked at US theatres including the Guthrie, The Lost Colony and the Charlotte Shakespeare Company, and with two theatres in Cologne, Germany.
For Actors Rep, he has performed in Flowers in the Desert (2015), The Fever (2016), Big Boys (2017), and Dear Santa… (2017), which he also wrote, and in his original solo piece #WTF Happened? On the Phenomenon of Trump (2017 and 2018).
Originally commissioned by Théâtre D’Esch and its then Director Charles Muller, portions of #WTF Happened? On the Phenomenon of Trump were presented at the theatre as part of the Esch-sur-Alzette, Luxembourg’s, ‘Night of Culture’ (Nuit de la Culture) in May 2017. A fully revised and re-imagined version was directed by Associate Artistic Director Christine Probst for Actors Rep in September 2017 at TNL. It was again revised and revived in June of 2018, prior to its highly successful run in the the US as part of the Kansas City Fringe Festival. That production was named as ‘Best of the Fringe’ for its venue (Musical Theatre Heritage – Mainstage).
Erik is in the television films The Murder of Mary Phagan and Lucky Day and the Irish-Luxembourgish feature film, The Runway, and in the Luxembourg produced short films D. – A Reproduction and If Six Was Nine. He appeared in commercials for, among others, the Minnesota Twins Major League Baseball team and was an English-language narrator for the German documentary film das geht nur langsam.
He played Dr Seward in an interactive CD-ROM video game called ‘Dracula Unleashed!’ and was seen as ‘Professor Bergdahl’ in the Luxemburger Wort German website’s 2015 April Fools’ Day video.
In 2013 Erik directed Actors Rep’s debut production, The Goat Or, Who is Sylvia?, in co-production with the Théâtre National du Luxembourg (TNL). For Actors Rep he has also directed A R Gurney’s Love Letters in 2014, Daryl Lisa Fazio’s Greyhounds in 2015, and Daniel Pinkerton’s Do You Want to Know a Secret? in 2016. In 2010 he directed David Mamet’s Jolly for the New World Theatre Club, which was awarded ‘Best Production’ at the 2010 Festival of European Anglophone Theatrical Societies (FEATS) and the Sydney Fisher Trophy at the 2010 British All-Winners Festival in Essex. In addition he has directed for companies including the Professional Theatre Workshop and Theatre Unbound.
Erik is a former Core Member of The Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he was also a member of the Artistic Staff and a two-time finalist for the Jerome Playwriting Fellowship. His works have received productions or staged readings at the Minnesota Fringe Festival, The Playwrights’ Center Hothouse Festival, Red Eye Collaboration, the New World Theatre Club, and of course Actors Rep. Erik has published articles in the scholarly journals Contemporary Theatre Review and European Stages and was a lecturer at several campuses of the City University of New York (CUNY) system. He has taught playwriting at the Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis, and was an Artist-in-Residence with SteppingStone Theatre for Youth Development in the St Paul (Minnesota) school system.
He trained at and has a BFA degree in Acting from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and has an MFA in Writing from Hamline University, and a Master’s and PhD in Theatre Studies from the CUNY Graduate Center.