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Stories of rewarding careers between starving artist and celebrity.

See it to Be it!

PODCAST EPISODES

ShowArt_AnneCofellSaunders
Anne Cofell Saunders–a television writer, executive producer, and mom of two daughters–tells her story of growing up in a small…
ShowArt_BonusEp_CollegeCreatives_rev
College theatre students share how they are staying creative and productive during times of isolation and uncertainty. All this time…
ShowArt_AlannaSaunders_REV
Alanna shares her experience as a New York-based Broadway actor–from growing up as a young performer in Seattle to getting…
ShowArt_JennaRubaii_REV
Jenna Rubaii shares what it’s like to be on the 50th Anniversary Tour of Jesus Christ Superstar, the importance of…
ShowArt_LoganJones
  Logan Jones shares how he went from being an unpaid apprentice to becoming a full-time theatre artist in the…
ShowArt_MariandTorres
Mariand Torres shares her incredible journey–from starting out not knowing about musical theatre to hopping from broadway show to broadway…

About Jen

As the creator, producer, and host of the Ditch Your Backup Plan (DYBP) podcast, I am on a mission to change perceptions about careers in arts and entertainment and what it really means to “make it” in the arts.

I am a university professor of theatre and an associate director in the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance at Kansas State University. Previously I have taught at the University of Miami (FL), Ohio University, and I have taught workshops at universities across the U.S. I teach all levels of acting, directing, and voice/speech to theatre, music, dance, broadcasting, and law students and many of my former students enjoy successful careers on Broadway and in TV/Film, in all kinds of jobs. My interviews with former students and colleagues prove there are many rewarding careers between starving artist and celebrity.

As a director, my passion is new play development. I have directed several new plays including Fashionistas by Janet Allard at the New York City venue, Urban Stages in 2012 and workshop productions in Brooklyn, Chicago, and Norway (Oslo and the Arctic city of Tromsø) of Chantal Bilodeau’s Forward, the second play in The Arctic Cycle, a company for which I serve as the resident director. We began development on Chantal’s newest play, No More Harveys in Helsinki, Finland in 2018. I directed the American premiere of Bustown, by Australian playwright, Lachlan Philpott. and premieres of Bilodeau’s The Motherline at the New York International Fringe Festival in 2009, and Alex Wakim and Chantal Bilodeau’s new musical, An American in Beirut in 2019.

Other professional theatre credits include work at Lincoln Center, Guthrie Theater, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Dallas Theater Center, Old Globe Theatres, Playhouse on the Square, Circuit Playhouse, Redhouse Art Center, and Monomoy Theatre.

I continue to work as a voiceover artist in the business arena and in my pre-director days, I performed as an actor and singer all over the U.S. including in New York, Chicago, China and Croatia. I remain a member of Actors Equity Association as Jennifer Guindon.