Executive and Artistic Director Raphael Parry joined Shakespeare Dallas in 2002, assuming his current role in 2008. Since then he has grown Shakespeare to a year-round theatre company reaching over 50,000 people annually through performances, classes and workshops across North Texas.
Parry oversees all productions and has also directed and performed in over 35 plays for the company including The Merry Wives of Windsor, King Lear, Tartuffe, Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), Pericles, Twelfth Night, Othello, Hamlet and a world premiere adaptation of Henry IV Parts 1 and 2.
Parry is the co-founder and former Co-Artistic Director of Undermain Theatre, the Founding Producer of Project X: Theatre and served for five years as Artistic Director of Young Audiences of North Texas. Additional selected directing/performance credits include An Almost Holy Picture (Echo Theatre); Road, Fool for Love (Kitchen Dog Theater), A Christmas Carol (Dallas Theater Center) and A Streetcar Named Desire (Zachary Scott Theater in Austin).
Across his career, he has received over 20 awards including citations from the Dallas Theatre Critics’ Forum and the Leon Rabin Awards. Parry has also been recognized for his ongoing contributions to the theatrical scene with the Dallas Theatre League Standing Ovation Award in 2006.
Shakespeare Dallas’ board of directors recently announced the appointment of Karen Raehpour as the company’s new executive director effective November 2022. The appointment was made after a national search was conducted under the guidance of professional search firm Martin Bragg & Associates.
Karen has an extensive business and theater background. With 25 years of business management experience, she has led the sales and marketing arms of several multi-million-dollar manufacturing companies, traveled the globe mounting trade shows and corporate trainings, and owned and operated a successful event planning business. Most recently, she served as the managing partner of RK Meetings and Events, where she produced the 2015-2017 Dallas editions of Diner en Blanc, world-renowned as the largest dinner party in the world. For DEB, Karen managed corporate sponsorships with Southwest Airlines, Merrill Lynch, Mercedes-Benz, Moet & Chandon, Evian, Celebrity Cruises, The Omni & The Hilton.
Raehpour has a theater degree from Northwestern University, has worked as a professional equity actor in Chicago and Los Angeles, and has participated in over 100 productions. Most recently, you may have seen Karen as King Claudius in our Fall 2022 production of Hamlet, directed by Christie Vela, and as Ross in our 2019 production of Macbeth. She has performed Shakespeare at several important regional theaters including The Goodman (Chicago), Chicago Shakespeare Repertory, and the Illinois Shakespeare Festival.