Wendy Gross Baker is a director, playwright, performer and educator who has been working with young people for 20 years.
Wendy was the Artistic Director of Rainier Valley Youth Theatre in Seattle, WA from 1997 until 2001. As Artistic Director, she was responsible for a 250-seat state-of-the-art performing space, founded the theater's Young Playwrights Festival, created a summer theater workshop and numerous school-based residency programs. Also in Seattle, she was a teaching artist for Seattle Repertory Theatre and Director of the youth theater program at Bainbridge Performing Arts Center.
In NY, Wendy has directed for The Roundabout Theatre Conservatory, Michael Howard Studio, Prism Productions, Stepforward Productions, Groundworks Productions, The American Musical and Dramatic Academy, Fleetwood Stage, The Mannes School and the Lucy Moses School for Music and Dance.
As a performer, Wendy has appeared in over thirty productions. She has written, directed and performed with The Poppy Seed Players, the resident theater company at the Elaine Kaufman Cultural Center in Manhattan. She was a member of the cabaret group, “Paranoise”, when they received the 1993-94 “Entertainers of the Year” by CaB Magazine. Early NY work includes several off-off broadway productions, television walk-ons, regional commercials and independent films.
As an arts educator, Wendy develops and conducts school-based residency programs that integrate classroom content with drama activities as a way to deepen students' learning. Residency topics range from literature to science to social studies and include hands-on drama activities with writing, playwriting and video editing. Wendy has worked as an Artist-in-Residence in the following districts: NYC, White Plains, Clarkstown and Pelham. She currently freelances as a video editor for Southern Westchester BOCES.
Wendy started performing at age eleven and studied at HB Studio, SUNY Purchase and at Stagedoor Manor Training Center. She holds a degree in Acting and Directing with a Voice Minor from Syracuse University. Other training includes the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts and the Michael Howard Studio. Graduate studies at Hunter College concentrated in Creative Drama and Theatre in Education.