Director and writer Beverly Blankenship grew up in Europe and the United States. She trained as an actress at the Max Reinhardt Seminar in Vienna. After her first contract at the Salzburger Landestheater she went to Australia, where she started to direct and write. Beverly Blankenship returned to Europe in 1992. Her productions can be seen at many major theatres and opera houses.
Blankenship directed ROMEO AND JULIET for the Hanoi Youth Theatre (November 2019) just before the Pandemic locked down theatres. Instead of directing she wrote a book:
In October 2022 her first book DER SINGENDE KÖRPER IN BEWEGUNG, a handbook for students of music theatre, will be published by OLMS Verlag, Germany.
In theatre Beverly Blankenship prefers the work of contemporary authors. For her production of Howard Barkers Scenes from an Execution she received the Vienna Volkstheater Skraup Prize for Best Production. Her production of Clara S. by Elfriede Jelinek premiered at the same theatre. She also directed Barker´s Hang of the Gaol in Sydney and 7xLear for Vienna´s Theater in der Drachengasse. For Theater in der Josefstadt (Vienna) she produced Alan Ayckbourn´s Relatively Speaking and Tom Stoppard´s The Real Thing. Her production of John Godber´s Bouncers at the Theater in der Drachengasse was invited to Moscow. She directed Dacia Maraini´s Maria Stuarda twice and performed the role of Maria in a third production. She directed Merlin or the Waste Land by Tankred Dorst and Ursula Ehler twice (Staatstheater Saarbrücken, Landestheater Salzburg).
Beverly Blankenship also worked as a dramaturg (Playworks Sydney, founded by Ros Horin) and script editor (Australian Film Council). She has been a member of the Australia Council for the Arts´ Funding Board, which supports the development of new authors. She founded a new company, Dramatic Services, in order to develop and produce new work. Dramatic Services´ first venture was the production of Vivace: A collaboration between five authors, five composers, six performers and two directors (the other director was Thea Brejzek) who created innovative, narrative music theatre. In January 2011 a new music theatre piece led her to Hanoi, where the Goethe Institute produced PARZIVAL, composed by Pierre Oser to a libretto by Dorst/Ehler.
Together with her daughter Jessica Gerger, Beverly developed My Year without Sex, which has been performed in Vienna, London, the Adelaide Festival, the Melbourne Comedy Festival. Their latest work, Mrs T and the Problem of Plastic, is currently touring Melbourne schools.
There have always been plenty of new plays to produce, but the “classics” have been fun too. Quite a few of them have come her way more than once. She creates such repeat productions anew according to the different teams, the demands of new spaces and different audiences.
Shakespeare has been a constant companion: she has directed Hamlet in Sydney, As You Like It at the Staatstheater Saarbrücken and the Salzburger Landestheater, Measure For Measure and Much Ado About Nothing for Vienna´s Volkstheater, where she also directed Racine´s Phèdre. Schiller´s St Joan of Orleans was produced by Beverly Blankenship for the Staatstheater Saarbrücken.
The Reichenau Festival gave her the opportunity to work on Arthur
Schnitzler´s major plays: Das weite Land, Zwischenspiel, Der einsame Weg, Professor Bernhardi. The adaptation of Stefan Zweig´s novella Rausch der Verwandlung as well as Hauptmann´s Before the Sun Sets was also directed for this festival.
She also directed Lessing´s Minna von Barnhelm at the Theater St. Gallen.
In February 2008 her production of Schiller´s Dom Carlos premiered in Meiningen at the Südthüringisches Staatstheater.
In January 2010 Nestroys Lumpazivagabundus opened at the Salzburger Landestheater. For the Festspiele Reichenau she produced Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (2016), Das Spiel der Sommerlüfte (2017), A Streetcar Named Desire (2018). Her most recent theatre production: Das Mädl aus der Vorstadt was for the Festival in Kobersdorf, Austria (July 2019).