Theatre and Dance


Dr. Rachel Chaves

Assistant Professor of Theatre
Office Location: 100B Browne Hall
Office Phone: (309) 298-1029

Dr. Chaves is a stage director with a wide range of theatrical experience.She received her BFA in Acting from Otterbein College, her MFA in Directing from Illinois State University, and her PhD in Theater Historiography from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. She spent a number of years in Chicago, freelancing and running a small not-for-profit called The Treehouse Theatre.

Additionally, Rachels scholarly work includes research with community-based theatre zAmya Theater Project, a collective composed of non-self-identified performers experiencing homelessness. Rachel's research was supported by several significant grants, including the Diversity of Views and Experiences Fellowship and the Norman Johnston Dewitt Fellowship. She was previously employed at Young Harris College, where she taught courses in directing, performance, and history/literature.

Dr. Chaves is currently artistic director of Brasstown Repertory Theatre Company, a stage company devoted to producing delightful summer fare, devising original pieces, and cultivating the work of new playwrights. She is excited to begin mentoring Western's future theatre professionals, and looks forward to many fruitful collaborations during her tenure here as Head of MFA Directing.