Yale University

Yale School of Drama Professor in the Practice of Acting and Directing and Yale Repertory Theatre Resident Director Evan Yionoulis ’82 last month was named the Richard Rodgers director of drama at Juilliard. Yionoulis will join the Juilliard faculty beginning in the 2018-2019 academic year.

Yionoulis’ appointment marks the end of her 20-year tenure on the drama school’s faculty. From 1998 to 2003, she served as the Lloyd Richards professor and chair of acting.

“It’s an exciting time to be an artist and to be training artists,” Yionoulis said. “New voices are being included, and that is affecting the theatre as a whole, the culture as a whole and certainly the training programs.”

In her new position, Yionoulis will oversee Juilliard’s students, faculty, curricula and production seasons. Juilliard’s drama program is regarded as one of the top programs in the country, along with YSD.

At Yale, Yionoulis has taught scene study to acting students, and led actor-director labs in which directors and actors learn about the process of collaborating and rehearsing.

As a resident director of the Yale Repertory Theatre, Yionoulis has directed a play every year or two. She has directed both new works of drama and classics.

Yionoulis attended both Yale College and the drama school. The first play Yionoulis directed was performed in the Athenaeum Room in Saybrook College. But Yionoulis said her interest in drama began much earlier: in grade school, she often transformed class projects into opportunities to write and produce short plays.

During her time at Yale College, Yionoulis also directed a production of “The Robber Bridegroom” in the Davenport College dining hall. For her junior project in the theater studies major, Yionoulis directed “Measure for Measure,” and for her senior project, she directed “The Threepenny Opera” in the Education Center for the Arts on Audubon Street.

Yionoulis attended YSD as a directing student, and taught in its summer programs after her graduation.

Yionoulis said that in the most basic terms, she works with her students on “listening, talking and pursuing a goal.”

“I teach how we can use language to get what we want, and simply and clearly we must receive from our partners,” she said.

Dean of the School of Drama James Bundy said Yionoulis will be missed in New Haven. Still, he said, Yionoulis’ new appointment is “wonderful news for the future of our art form.”

“She will continue to raise the standard of practice in the field through her leadership at Juilliard, where so many of our current and future collaborators will be uplifted by her spirit and expertise,” Bundy said.

While a student at Yale, Yionoulis belonged to Saybrook College.   

Julia Carabatsos | julia.carabatsos@yale.edu