Lavina Jadhwani is thrilled to make her Theatreworks debut! Her directing credits include work at American Conservatory Theater, Asolo Repertory Theatre, Guthrie Theater, Mixed Blood Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Shakespeare & Company, Teatro Vista, Silk Road Rising, and Writers Theatre. As an adaptor, she has tackled both South Asian epics (The Ramayana, Shakuntala) as well as Western classics like Uncle Vanya. Time Out Chicago named her their “Best Next Generation Stage Director” in 2013. Graduate of The Theatre School at DePaul University (MFA, Directing), Carnegie Mellon University (BFA, Scenic Design; Masters, Arts Management).
Lavina Jadhwani: Hinsdale, IL
TW: Home now?
LJ: Chicago, IL
TW: What did you want to grow up to be at age eight?
LJ: Probably the next Kristi Yamaguchi.
TW: Who are your theatre idols?
LJ: May Adrales, Rajiv Joseph, Shishir Kurup, Qui Nguyen, Tim Dang, Lauren Yee, Snehal Desai, Seema Sueko, Eric Ting, Dipankar Mukherjee and Meena Natarajan.
TW: What would you be doing if you were not a director?
LJ: I'm pretty good at organizing things and I like bringing communities together -- so maybe a community organizer or event planner?
TW: As an independent artist, you probably travel a lot. What do you love about that? What do you hate?
LJ: I love seeing different parts of the country (I want to direct a play in all 50 states) but also I do miss home at times.
TW: Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
LJ: Yikes, you'll probably have to ask the cast and production team! I do quote a lot of Aaron Sorkin shows...
TW: Tell us about one seminal experience where you saw greatness play out in front of you:
LJ: I saw an early workshop of Minita Gandhi's solo show Muthland at Silk Road Rising in 2015 and it's one of the bravest and most socially relevant pieces of theatre I've ever seen! I'm so thrilled to work with her on this project, too.
TW: What’s on your playlist these days?
LJ: Mostly Lizzo, Beyoncé, lots of 80s/90s Bollywood tunes, and the Always Be My Maybe soundtrack.
TW: Why does Around the World in 80 Days matter now?
LJ: I'm so moved by Laura Eason's adaptation, which manages to preserve the integrity of Jules Vernes' story while also crafting a narrative that's through a post-colonial, feminist lens. Through Phileas Fogg, we learn the importance of loyalty, love (both platonic and romantic), and opening your eyes to seeing the world. I'm really excited to share this production, which will be inclusive in so many ways, with Colorado audiences of all ages!