A founding member of Elements Theater Company and current Artistic Director, Danielle Dwyer, CJ, has either directed or performed in over eighty of the Company’s productions since its inception in 1993. Classically trained, but also skilled in contemporary drama, Sr. Danielle Dwyer seeks to fulfill the vision of every playwright with utmost authenticity, and strives to elevate the truths that lie hidden beneath the surface of every work.
Dwyer’s directorial experiences range from the timeless humanity of Shakespeare, Ibsen, and Chekhov, to the biting comedy of Oscar Wilde and Yasmina Reza, to the razor-sharp wit of Alan Bennett, to the sacred Latin Mystery plays from the 15th century. Danielle Dwyer has written, directed, and performed three original solo sacred dramas at the Church of the Transfiguration as a part of the Sacred Drama Series Revealing Transfigured Lives. In 2013 under Dwyer’s Direction, Elements Theatre Company launched Arts in Conversation, a series of panel discussions following theatre performances featuring leaders in the arts, education, religion, media, and social outreach, with the aim of creating a broader, richer public dialogue on the power of the arts to humanize culture. She has devised and directed several shows for performances at home and on tour in Italy and the United States.
Collaborative ventures include co-directing the 2005 New England Premier (and directing in 2017) Ralph Vaughan Williams’ opera, The Pilgrim’s Progress, performed by Gloriæ Dei Cantores and Elements Theatre Company. She was also involved in helping to bring a new medium, Instrumental Theatre in Motion, to the stage, with performances in South Korea, South Africa and the United States.
“Under the able handed direction of Sr. Danielle Dwyer this ‘Julius Caesar’ soars with sight and sound. Dwyer is able to combine the intimacy of the columned setting, the sound of the slap of the sandals on the stone floor, the dance of burning torches, the rich acting, and the beautifully composed music… into not just a play for the audience to view but more like the transport of actually being there.”—Barnstable Patriot
As an actress, Sr. Danielle Dwyer is equally highly acclaimed. Her recent roles include Madam Arcati in Blithe Spirit, Kate Keller in All My Sons, and Shylock in Merchant of Venice. Other roles include Irene in Talking Heads, Calpurnia in Julius Caesar, Annette Raleigh in God of Carnage, Lona Hessel in Pillars of the Community, Malvolio in Twelfth Night, Ranevskaya in The Cherry Orchard, Mrs. Erlynne in Lady Windermere’s Fan, Eleanor in The Lion in Winter, Mephistopheles in Doctor Faustus, Queen Elizabeth in Richard III, Everyman in Everyman, and Lettice Douffet in Lettice and Loveage.
“Madame Arcati, played to the hilt by Sr. Danielle Dwyer, is a show-stealer. The character, in contrast to the socialites who hire her, feels contemporary and real. She tells it like it is, expresses herself freely and is fun to watch. Dwyer brings Madame Arcati hilariously to life…”—Blithe Spirit, Cape Cod Times
“Sr. Danielle Dwyer reaches unbelievable depths in her portrayal of Kate Keller… She makes us feel the pain and strength of this matriarch ….compelling performance.” —All My Sons, Broadway World
“…her portrayal (of Irene Ruddock) in Alan Bennett’s monologue was so believable, so realistic, that at play’s end it felt a bit like waking up in another place. …British accent was flawless, but it was her understanding of her character’ humanity that really delivered.”—Talking Heads, Cape Cod Times
A skilled and inspired teacher, she has led workshops with students in acting and movement across the country, and works annually with Spirit Winter Percussion, a youth marching percussion ensemble, teaching theatre, performance practice, and storytelling. She is the author of video scripts, poetic monologues, and narratives for worship and meditation.