Program Books/Ameenah Kaplan

Ameenah Kaplan


Ameenah Kaplan holds a BFA in directing from the Academy of Art University Film School. She also studied acting at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. Kaplan has served as Resident Director for Disney’s The Lion King on Broadway and on the show’s North American tour, and appears on the ABC+ show Encore! as a choreographer and director. She spent her early career working as an actor, choreographer, and drummer. Her acting credits include Avengers: Infinity War and guest-star and recurring roles on The Office and Grey’s Anatomy, and she was in the original American cast of Stomp. Kaplan has been a drum coach with Blue Man Group for 18 years and has played drums for Rihanna, Macy Gray, Adam Lambert, and Rod Stewart. Other directing credits include The Wiz for First Stage Mil­waukee, Our Country’s Good at American Players Theatre, By the Way, Meet Vera Stark at Purdue Uni­versity, How to Break for the Village Theater Seattle, The Royale at ACT Theatre Seattle, and Bash’d for Los Angeles’ Cele­bration Theatre. She directed Molodi: Up Close and Personal for Las Vegas’ premiere body percussion group and consults for Antics Performance, a hip-hop theater company in Los Angeles. Kaplan has twice directed for Noah Wylie’s Young Playwright’s Festival. Her short film Man with a Movie Camera premiered at Hollyshorts Film Festival in 2014. She also directed an award-winning short, The American Failure, which was shown at multiple film festivals. Kaplan has choreographed more than two-dozen shows for stage and television, including Dancing with the Stars. She originated the choreography for The Royale at the Kirk Douglas Theatre in Los Angeles and for The Dancing Granny by Ashley Bryan at the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta. Kaplan is the recipient of Gregory, Ovation, Sherwood, Queen of Angels, and multiple NAACP and LA Weekly awards for choreography, fight choreography, and directing.