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KATY HAHN

Theatre Artist & Educator

FREELANCE CONTACT EMAIL:

KATY.A.HAHN@GMAIL.COM

INSTITUTIONAL CONTACT EMAIL:

KATHERINE.HAHN@UNI.EDU

Katy is based in Cedar Falls, Iowa, which is located on the ancestral land of the Báxoǰe or Bah Kho-Je (Iowa), oθaakiiwaki‧hina‧ki (Sauk) and Meškwahki·aša·hina (Fox), Očhéthi Šakówiŋ (Sioux), Umóⁿhoⁿ (Omaha), and Hocąk (Ho-Chunk) people.

Katy’s mission as a theatre artist and educator is to use accessible, equitable, and sustainable practices to spark creativity, inspire confidence, cultivate empathy, build community, and launch discourse.

UP NEXT…

Director

Ordinary Days

THEATREUNI, 2024

RECENT HIGHLIGHTS…

Director

Dracula: A Feminist Revenge Fantasy

THEATREUNI, 2023

LAERTES

HAMLET

CROOKED PATH THEATRE, 2023

Director

RADIUM GIRLS

THEATREUNI, 2023

Director

WONDER OF THE WORLD

COE COLLEGE, 2022

King Henry

HENRY V

RIVERSIDE THEATRE, 2022

DIRECTOR

THE REVOLUTIONISTS

COE COLLEGE, 2022

THE PILOT

GROUNDED

RIVERSIDE THEATRE, 2020

Katy’s Background

Katy’s Work in Higher Education

Katy serves as an Assistant Professor of Theatre at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls. She is the primary acting instructor and intimacy choreographer at UNI, and directs regularly in the mainstage season, in addition to accent coaching. Katy serves as the current faculty advisor for a student organization called the Multicultural Theatrical Society. She is the co-chair of the Performance Committee, the theatre faculty representative for the College of Humanities, Arts, and Sciences Faculty Senate, and a member of the Equity and Antiracism Committee.

Katy has also taught undergraduate theatre courses at Florida Atlantic University, Coe College, Hawkeye College, and the University of Iowa. 

College/University theatrical productions Katy has directed include:
Dracula: A Feminist Revenge Fantasy (UNI, 2023)
Radium Girls (UNI, 2023)
Wonder of the World (Coe College, 2022)
The Revolutionists (Coe College, 2022)
The Wolves (Cornell College, 2019)

Katy’s Work in the Iowa Theatre Community

Born in Iowa to a pair of artistic educators, Katy ultimately returned to her home state to do her part in enriching the cultural landscape that nurtured her through her youth. She takes great pride in raising her children in the state that raised her.

Katy has worked with Iowa companies such as Riverside Theatre, Crooked Path Theatre, Working Group Theatre, and Fourth Room Theatre (Iowa City); Nolte Academy and City Circle Theatre Company (Coralville); Mirrorbox Theatre, Revival Theatre Company, Theatre Cedar Rapids, The Classics at Brucemore, SPT Theatre, The Foundry Performance Lab, and Urban Theatre Project of Iowa (Cedar Rapids); and the Iowa Theatre Artists Company (Amana). 

Katy is actively involved in the Iowa theatre community as a performer, director, teacher, coach, and consultant, with specialties in acting, voice, text, and accent work.

Recent acting highlights include playing King Henry in Henry V (2022) and The Pilot in Grounded (2020) at Riverside Theatre, and Alex Overstreet in the limited series Friendly Faces (2023)

Recent directing highlights include Aurora at the Theatre Cedar Rapids Underground New Play Festival and Bully at Mirrorbox Theatre (2019).

Katy’s Background

Education & TRAINING

Katy earned a BA in Theatre Performance from the University of Northern Iowa in 2010 and an MFA in Acting from Florida Atlantic University in 2015. She has completed multiple training intensives in New York, Chicago, and the Twin Cities, including three with Shakespeare & Company. She did an apprenticeship with Riverside Theatre in the Park in the summer of 2014 and a month-long course on Meisner Technique in the fall of 2015.

Katy was trained and distinguished as an “Educator Advocate” by Theatrical Intimacy Education in 2023 and will complete teacher certification in the Michael Chekhov Technique through the Great Lakes Michael Chekhov Consortium in the summer of 2025. 

THEATRE FOR YOUTH & COMMUNITIES

Katy attended her first play at age 2 and started performing at age 5, continuing to be involved in theatre throughout childhood in school and community theatre settings. 

She began teaching theatre as a summer camp counselor at the age of 15, and has since taught dozens of youth theatre camps, classes, and workshops in Mason City, Webster City, Cedar Rapids, Iowa City, Mt. Vernon, and Coralville, including semester-long courses at Theatre Cedar Rapids and Nolte Academy.

Theatre that focuses on social issues has been a primary focus throughout Katy’s artistic life, beginning in childhood. At the age of 10, Katy played the title role in a production of Annie that partnered with the Make-a-Wish Foundation. When she was 17, she played the lead in the Iowa premier of an award-winning new play called Up the Waterspout by Ryan Borcherding, which spread awareness of teen peer pressure, mental illness, self-harm, and suicide. In college, Katy tackled these themes again when she directed Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead through the UNI Student Theatre Association.

In 2016 Katy performed in the first national tour of Out of Bounds by Jennifer Fawcett, for which she also led forum theatre workshops and talkbacks with middle school and high school students about cyberbullying and bystander intervention techniques. This tour consisted of over 50 performances in multiple venues across Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Nevada, New Jersey, and New York, including a week-long residency at the Smith Center for the Performing Arts in Las Vegas.

Later in 2016, Katy collaborated with OneIowa North (an area chapter of the state-wide LGBTQ+ organization) to produce and direct The Laramie Project in her hometown of Mason City, IA. In 2018, Katy joined forces with OneIowa North again to direct Urinetown the Musical. Both productions were fundraisers for the Craig W. Hickok Memorial Scholarship Fund.

In 2018, Katy worked with community college music and theatre students in Waterloo, IA to devise a free public performance based on the book A Long Way Home by Saroo Brierly. In 2021 she used a similar process to devise a piece with young adults in Iowa City and Coralville based on the children’s book Antiracist Baby.

DANCE & MOVEMENT

Katy started taking dance classes through the Studio of Performing Arts at age 5, studying ballet, jazz, tap, and modern dance throughout her youth. She was also active in sports, including volleyball, basketball, softball, cheerleading, and track, qualifying for events in the Iowa State Track Meet and Drake Relays as a sprinter/hurdler in multiple years. She performed in her high school show choir and danced in the annual summer musicals. Her first mainstage role in college was playing a female version of the character Larry (the choreographer) in A Chorus Line as a freshman. Katy has continued to train in various forms of dance and movement as an adult, from African dance to body percussion to swing and ballroom, as well as yoga and acroyoga. She has experience doing stage combat in production, including unarmed, knife, single sword, and rapier and dagger. Movement techniques studied include Alexander Technique, Feldenkrais Method, Laban Movement Analysis, Viewpoints, and others.

VOCAL & INSTRUMENTAL MUSIC

Katy sings as a mezzo-soprano/alto, and plays alto and tenor saxophone, piano, and a little ukelele.

As a teenager Katy participated in music ensembles such as concert choir, chamber choir, madrigal choir, show choir, symphonic band, jazz band, pep band, and marching band, as well as honor choirs and honor bands. She served as drum major for two years, was the only student in her grade to play in her school’s top jazz band throughout all four years of high school and holds the unique distinction of having been selected for both the Iowa All-State Chorus and the Iowa All-State Band.

In college, Katy minored in music and worked on mainstage theatre productions as a vocal arranger, music director, and conductor. She performed with UNI’s choral ensembles and jazz bands.

Professional musical theatre credits include Side by Side by Sondheim with the Atlantic Artists Ensemble, The Robber Bridegroom with Big Country Dinner Theatre, and the original cast of Tic Tic Tic – A Timely Musical with SPT Theatre, among other revues, green shows, and cabaret performances.

SPEECH & ACCENTS

Katy discovered a passion and proclivity for voice, speech, and accent work in graduate school. She has formally studied the vocal production techniques of Catherine Fitzmaurice and Kristin Linklater, as well as the speech methodologies of Edith Skinner and Dudley Knight. 

Katy has amassed extensive experience as an accent coach and has been referred to as “the premier accent coach in the state of Iowa, if not the region.”