Shirley Jo Finney

Shirley Jo Finney

Office Location

Theater Dance West 2510




SHIRLEY JO FINNEY is an award-winning international director of theatre, television, and film, as well as an accomplished actress. She has worn her director’s hat in some of the most respected regional theater houses across the country including The McCarter Theatre, The Pasadena Playhouse, The Goodman Theater, the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, the Cleveland Playhouse, the Fountain Theater, LA Theater Works, the Crossroads Theater Company, Actors Theater of Louisville Humana Festival, the Sundance Theater Workshop, The Mark Taper Forum Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the State Theater in Pretoria, South Africa. Most recently, Miss Finney directed and developed the critically acclaimed world premiere of Citizen: An American Lyric, by the award-winning PEN poet Claudia Rankin. Other recent works index Facing Our Truth: The Trayvon Martin Project at the Kirk Douglas Theatre; The Lark Foundations rolling premier of The Road Weeps, by Marcus Gardley at the Los Angeles Theatre Center; Tarell Alvin McCraney’s Brother/Sisters Plays, Lisa B Thompson’s Single Black Female at the Crossroads Theater; and Company and Dominique Morisseau’s Detroit 67 at the Penumbra Theater. She also helmed the international all South African Opera Winnie based on the life of political icon Winnie Mandela. Miss Finney is the recipient of prestigious award such a SDCF’s 2017 Denham Fellowship for her production of Runaway Home by Jeremy Kamps, the LA Drama Critics Milton Katsleas Distinguished Career Award, the LA Stage Alliance Ovation Award, The Los Angeles Drama Critics Award, LA Weekly Award, The NAACP and the Santa Barbara Independent awards for her directing work. She was honored with the UCLA Department of Stage Film and Television Distinguished Alumni Award and The Black Alumni Associations Dr. Beverly Robinson Award for Excellence in the Arts. She is an alumnus of the American Film Institute’s Director Workshop for Women, holds an MFA degree from UCLA and is also a member of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers, the Director’s Guild, and the Screen Actor’s Guild.