Jeanne Beckwith’s plays have been staged from New York to California and as far away as Dublin and Istanbul, proving her international appeal as a playwright. Originally a "Navy Brat" and now a proud Vermonter, Jeanne embraces words to explore the world around her, choosing theater as her medium. In addition to being a prolific playwright for nearly forty years, she directs theatrical productions of every genre, teaches literature and theater arts on the college level, and is a sought-after panelist for literary conferences around the country.
Jeanne’s love of the written word was apparent as she began her educational journey as an English Education major at Eastern Illinois University in 1968. Her passion continued through earning a Master’s degree in Creative Writing at Indiana University, a Master of Fine Arts in Playwriting at the University of Georgia, and finally a PhD in Drama in 1994, also from the University of Georgia.
Her first publication came in 2002 through Playscripts, Inc., with the full-length play, A War Story at the Rialto, which was produced by the State Theater of Turkey in Ankara and Istanbul during 2010 and 2011. Many of Jeanne’s short plays have been included in anthologies and “best of” collections, and theatrical organizations in New York and throughout New England have recognized her snappy writing style and “dark comedy” with awards for her original work.
Her plays have been produced continuously since 2008 by prestigious theater companies and festivals including Chicago’s Otherworld Theater, The New Jersey Repertory Company, Alpha New York Actors Theatre, NYC’s Redd Tale Theater, Golden Thread Producions in San Francisco, and Thistle Dew Theater in Sacramento. In 2018, Jeanne’s play The Late Rosie Callaghan was staged as part of the NEWvember Playreading Series in Dublin, Ireland, which Jeanne and her husband, writer F. Brett Cox, happily attended.
In Jeanne’s adopted home state of Vermont, regional and community theater companies and audiences have loved her work for twenty years. Her plays are regularly produced in by Off-Center for the Dramatic Arts in Burlington, by MOXIE Productions in Waterbury Center, by Unadilla Theater in Marshfield, and by the Valley Players and the Vermont Playwright’s Circle as part of an annual ten-minute play festival in Waitsfield. A production of her newest full-length play, The End of the World As We Know It, will be produced in Rutland this fall by the Vermont Actor’s Repertory Theater.
When not writing, teaching, or directing, Jeanne finds time to hold professional memberships with the Dramatists Guild, the New England Theater Conference Board of Directors, and the International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts, and to enjoy her little slice of heaven in Roxbury, Vermont.