Michelle Lema

Michelle is an actor, writer, and director who grew up in the small town of Elk Grove, California, just south of Sacramento. She was a member of Sheldon Theatreworks there and in 2001 traveled with them to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, performing in THE COARSE ACTING SHOW.

Michelle moved to Los Angeles to study at the University of Southern California School of Theatre. She also studied at Oxford University with the British American Drama Academy.

Since graduation from USC, she joined The Open Fist Theatre Company in Hollywood where she was a member and Fundraising Director for four years. With the Open Fist, Michelle had the opportunity to perform in and assistant direct a wide array of productions, including stage managing for Neil LaBute for the Open Fist First Look Festival where Neil wrote and directed two new one act plays. She also was a cast member in DEVIL WITH BOOBS which won an LA Weekly Award for Best Comedy Ensemble in 2009.

Michelle was a member of an improv troupe at Ultimate Improv in Westwood for two years. She is also a practiced pianist and has assistant musical directed shows including Cornerstone Theatre Company’s DEMETER IN THE CITY at the Red Cat Theatre in downtown Los Angeles.

In 2008, Michelle spent a summer at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland where she performed for a month in 3 shows with This Bridge Theatre Company. She assistant directed one of the shows, SHAKESPEARE’S R&J, and co-wrote another show, SHAKESPEARE MADE EASY, a childrens’ show which has also been produced in Colorado, Georgia, and Northern California. She and her writing partner, Melissa Lyons, have written 7 childrens’ shows together and recently published SHAKESPEARE MADE EASY (now called SHAKESPEARE FOR KIDS!) with Heartland Plays, Inc. which is available for purchase at www.heartlandplays.com.

In 2009, she traveled to Germany for her second run assistant directing SHAKESPEARE’S R&J with This Bridge Theatre Company. The production began its tour at the Mainzer Kammerspiele in Mainz and finished its run at the International Shakespeare Festival at the Globe Theatre in Neuss.

Most recently in Los Angeles, Michelle created LEMABEAN PRODUCTIONS and wrote, produced, and performed in her world premiere solo show called BEAN. The show was Best of Hollywood Fringe 2011 in June and enjoyed an extended run through July and August. In January 2012 BEAN toured Australia performing at FRINGE WORLD Festival Perth in Western Australia where the Perth Now Sunday Times called BEAN a “Top Ten Pick” of the festival.