Jenny McConnell Frederick is a Washington, DC-based Director, Producer and strong believer in impossible theatre. She's the co-Artistic Director of Rorschach Theatre which she founded in the summer of 1999 with Randy Baker. She's a mom.
Currently she is part of 8-member team building Rorschach's ground-breaking Distance Frequencies, a project for which she created the concept. The immersive experience sends participants to seven locations around Washington, DC to explore chapters in an unfolding story about DC history--real and imagined. The project culminates in a live show in July 2021.
For Rorschach, she has directed the Helen Hayes Nominated Voices Underwater and God of Vengeance as well as Sing To Me Now, Dead City, This Storm is What We Call Progress, Rough Magic, The Arabian Night, The Scarlet Letter, Master and Margarita, A Clearing in the Woods, The Illusion and both of the recent sold-out runs of Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere. In 2015, she conceived and directed Truth & Beauty Bombs, an original work based on the Canadian webcomic A Softer World.
She has also directed for Theater J (G-d's Honest Truth) and Catholic University (Sissy and Fifi & Hunter Forever!). She co-created March!: The Women's Movement from Isadora Duncan to Now, and Chambers of the Heart, both immersive Dance/Theatre projects at Word Dance Theatre. She’s served as a mentor director for the Theatre Lab’s Honors Acting Conservatory and for the Kennedy Center's American College Theatre Festival and was a featured speaker at the CityWrights Conference in Miami. During her tenure as Director of Artistic Programs at CulturalDC, she served as Artistic Director of Source Festival. In that capacity she oversaw the selection, development and production of more than 200 works for the stage over nearly a decade. Work developed and produced by Jenny at the Source Festival boasts multiple National New Play Network Rolling World Premieres, several American Theatre Critics Association Steinberg Award Nominations and an Osborn Award Winner. Through CulturalDC's Mead Theatre Lab Program and Space4: Performing Arts (which she conceived of and launched in 2017), she directed artist selection and recruitment processes and oversaw advisory panels. She has worked closely with many artists to create, develop and produce their own work. Prior to that she spent ten years working in development and special events for Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company as they moved from a tiny garage space on Church Street to their permanent home on D Street NW. There she collaborated to develop and launch two of the company's biggest on-going fundraising events, the annual benefit bash and Dinner on Stage.
In 2018 she launched the It/That Happened project at the University of Maryland. This new initiative solicited student's real life experiences and shaped them into performances pieces that served as a catalyst for substantive, actionable dialogues on diversity and inclusion. She graduated cum laude from Virginia Commonwealth University with a BFA in Theatre and joined Mensa for the free pencils.
She lives in Takoma, DC with her husband and their long-term collaboration, a son named Thane.