Melissa Rain Anderson | Director ~ Actor ~ Coach Melissa Rain Anderson | Director ~ Actor ~ Coach
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  • ASF's ‘Marvelous Wonderettes’ lives up to its title

    “The Marvelous Wonderettes” is a warm-hearted, good-time musical of exquisite simplicity.

    The cast sings and dances so well (Director Melissa Rain Anderson shines not just as a director but for her choreography) that the production probably could have succeeded simply as a review, but it doesn’t have to.

    Believe the title — the Wonderettes are marvelous.
    – Rick Harmon, The Montgomery Advisor
  • Director and choreographer Melissa Rain Anderson sets a lively pace throughout, and challenges the four actors to give it their all over the two acts.... It's non-stop entertainment of dozens of songs interspersed with laughter and tears as they discover and develop their friendships over time.
    – Michael P. Howley, theatremontgomery

Upcoming Work

  • Syracuse Stage’s Production of Disney’s The Little Mermaid
    • Disney's The Little Mermaid

    • Disney's The Little Mermaid
      Director
    • Syracuse Stage
    • Book by Doug Wright
    • Based on the Hans Christian Andersen story and Disney film
    • Music by Alan Menken
    • Lyrics by Howard Ashman and Glenn Slater
    • November 25, 2022 – January 8, 2023

Recent Work

  • Three bold actors bathed in brooding light and soundwork take charge of the outdoor stage in Santa Cruz Shakespeare’s ingenious production of RII, a compressed adaptation by Jessica Kubzansky of Shakespeare’s King Richard the Second.

    The effect is by turns brilliant and surprising. Hearing Shakespeare explore the power of the English language makes RII a mesmerizing experience.

    The actors move fluidly in and out of their various parts, bodying forth all the intrigue, allegiance, and plotting that will launch the Hundred Years War. Thanks to intelligent direction by Melissa Rain Anderson, we are never in any doubt as to who’s who...

    Fine acting and inspired light and soundwork keep the various flashbacks moving swiftly, interweaving the doomed Richard and his chequered past into a shimmering organism.

    RII is worth its weight in dramatic gold. Skillful acting, pliant adaptation, and the exciting stagecraft we’ve come to expect of Santa Cruz Shakespeare.

    – Christina Waters, Good Times
  • The romantic tale of a forbidden love comes to life with a fresh take on the characters, time period, and costumes. The result is intriguing and captivating...Redhouse's Romeo and Juliet, under the creative direction of Melissa Rain Anderson, is refreshing from the casting choices to the setting and especially the line delivery. It is a beautiful, thought-provoking, and creative production of William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet.

    – Natasha Ashley, Broadway World
  • Under Anderson’s direction, the show moves across the thrust-styled stage with real grace and urgency.

    – Len Fonte, Syracuse.com
  • ...a captivating and raw production of Sarah DeLappe's The Wolves under the impressive direction of Melissa Rain Anderson.

    – Natasha Ashley, BroadwayWorld - Central New York
  • ...because the dialogue is so sharp, authentic, and kinetic I quickly got caught up in the girls’ stories/lives. Of course it helps that the play is smashingly well acted by an incredible ensemble and directed brilliantly by Melissa Rain Anderson. ...take my word go see it. It’s a knockout.

    – Craig Thornton, WWNY 7News
  • “All Is Calm” uses an incredibly talented 10-man cast to tell this story with powerful simplicity and subtle beauty. The fine acting and Anderson’s direction adds depth to the story and a bittersweet quality to the Christmas miracle.

    – Rick Harmon, Montgomery Adviser
  • As a lament to this loss of life and dignity, this production directed by Melissa Rain Anderson stuns her audiences with its simple messages and warnings. The richness of four-part men's harmonies, and the quality of individual voices [“O Holy Night“, for example], stress the senselessness of war, a potent theme of All is Calm that leaves a lasting memory.

    – Michael P. Howley, Theatre Montgomery
  • In adapting the animated original of Disney's The Little Mermaid for the stage, director Melissa Rain Anderson tosses in magic and motion.

    To elevate the fairytale magic of the story, Anderson brought in the team of circus artists, Ben Franklin and Joshua Dean, who trained the cast in trapeze and other circus arts for this production; they also lend their acrobatic talents to it as performers. The trapeze and circus aspects add a feeling of weightlessness along a vertical plane as kelp, anchor lines, and floating jellyfish take flight. In the musical number, "Kiss the Girl," the circus elements create an aerial spectacle as birds soar down from the sky to the sea.

    – Anna Jensen, Broadwayworld
  • Director Melissa Rain Anderson delivers everything we expect from a PCPA holiday production – spectacle, fun and heart.

    – Brent Parker, Santa Ynez Valley News
  • PCPA goes all out in its production of “The Little Mermaid,” and the spectacle is awe-inspiring....Something that makes the show stand out from other PCPA productions is that this one has collaborated with New York City’s 2 Ring Circus to bring breathtaking aerial feats to life on stage. This helps make the action to look as if you’re under the sea, swimming with all the sea creatures, or on a ship watching sailors climb the tall mast.

    – Daniel Lahr, Santa Ynez Valley Star

Selected Work

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