Anita Jo Lenhart
Associate Professor Anita "Jo" Lenhart holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from Eastern
Kentucky University and an MFA in Theatre (Directing) from Florida State University.
She completed her professional apprenticeship in acting with Actors Theatre of Louisville.
229 Theatre Building
At UM, "Jo" mentors and teaches graduate directing students; she also teaches in the
BFA in Peformance concentration, focusing on Voice for the Stage, Somatics, and Acting.
Her work in the classroom is informed by her professional career as an actress and
singer, as well as her work in yoga. "Jo" is a Certified Trainer in the Lessac Voice
and Bodywork. She also holds internationally recognized teaching certifications in
Bikram yoga and Kundalini yoga (as taught by Yogi Bhajan.)
She has performed professionally with local companies such as Opera Memphis, the Memphis
Symphony, Playhouse on the Square, Voices of the South and Theatre Memphis. Trained
in classical voice, as well as musical theatre, she has held the professional position
of Soloist in Residence for the Third Church of Christ, Scientist for over fifteen
years. Her professional work outside Memphis includes a variety of venues, including
Actors Theatre of Louisville, The Oklahoma Shakespeare Festival, Mill Mountain Theatre,
The Lamplighter's Musical Theatre, Pennsylvania Centre Stage, Hope Summer Repertory
Theatre, The Neil Simon Festival and The Great Plains Theatre. She has earned several
awards for her work, including a performance award in Musical Artistry from the Metropolitan
Opera regional auditions. Her directing career includes several shows for the University
of Memphis, as well as ten seasons for the Memphis Moving Line, eight seasons with
The Tennessee Governor's School for the Arts, and four seasons with The Moving Company
in Tallahassee, Florida. Jo was awarded the 2012 Best Director Award for her production
of King Lear, produced by Memphis' New Moon Theatre.
"Jo" recently co-directed a short film with UM Professor Steve Ross, Scenes from King Lear. The film debuted at The Memphis Film Festival, has been shown at the University
Film and Video Conference (Orange, CA) and can be viewed via Vimeo at http://vimeo.com/userstevenjross
Department of Theatre & Dance
144 Theatre Building
Phone: (901) 678-2523
Fax: (901) 678-1350