Kevin Michael Reed knows exactly when to leave the actor to explore and when to throw ideas of his own into the mix. His work with movement and instinct has been really helpful for me because with such a text heavy piece it could quite easily have become a very intellectual process.
Kevin Michael Reed is not only a Director. He is a visionary. Kevin knows how he wants things to look/ sound/ feel before pen has been put to paper. He never settles when it comes to quality and takes an immense amount of pride in his work. He lives and breathes it.
Kevin was the Director and Development Dramaturge of my full length play ‘Shadows’ which had a successful sold out run and achieved outstanding reviews.
Most of all Kevin is extremely talented and a pleasure to work with. I have learnt a huge amount about the theatre industry through working and discussing my work, and the work of others with him. Kevin is always open and willing to share and understand new concepts and ideas. He is particularly intrigued by work that combines both the day to day struggle and commentary on the way in which society operates.
"Someone who commands the respect of the actors in this way is invaluable in any process and testament to their quality as a director."
As an assistant director I found Kevin conscientious and committed and I enjoyed having him work with me very much. In fact he showed great creativity and strong leadership skills within in the rehearsal process.
I was impressed with Kevin’s skill as a director but also because he worked hard setting the tone and establishing a work ethic for the rest of the company. I found Kevin was an insightful and open minded collaborator confident in his opinion and yet willing reconsider, learn from the experience. He is already a very accomplished director in his own right and his graduate show was very impressive in its ambition its intellectual rigor and in it’s delivery. I would say Kevin has a wide ranging knowledge of theatre and great natural instincts as a director. In addition he was generous with his time and a very kind and considerate ally of the performers, in our production they sometimes struggled with the material we were working on, but they all felt they could come to Kevin for additional help and advice. For me someone who commands the respect of the actors in this way is invaluable in any process and testament to their quality as a director.
Kevin is a theatrical powerhouse – writer, director, producer and all-round great guy to work with. Freelancing for him in 2017 on three projects was very rewarding: all three were very creatively inspiring, and he has a knack for surrounding himself with the kind of people who make working in this field so worthwhile.
From a personal perspective, he places the work before himself, always giving you his time and energy, and always finding more in the seemingly bottomless well he draws from. Having him on your team, or being on his, is a fantastic experience.
"Kevin worked with the cast in a very open, straightforward way."
Kevin demonstrated a rapid connection to and thorough understanding of the text. ‘Shed’ is a very British play, set in a small Yorkshire town and using a very Northern voice, but this presented no issues at all in Kevin’s direction or the work with the actors. Kevin worked with the cast in a very open, straightforward way that allowed them freedom to explore the characters for themselves; the play deals with dementia and the decline of one character’s mental capacity, yet Kevin also found the humour in the script.
At no point did Kevin compromised or suggest changing the script. These constraints didn’t prevent Kevin from creating a very poignant presentation of the script that also brought out the characters’ relationships and ability to have fun together.
"Kevin was a great mentor, and an enjoyable boss"
Photographer / Videographer
Kevin was a great mentor, and an enjoyable boss. We spent a great deal of time together planning and producing a lot of successful work together.
His vision of what he wanted was always clear, and made work a lot easier. He treated me like an equal, and that made me work harder for him.
"Considered and Effective."
Development: Letting Go, 2018
His direction has always been considered and effective; he is a joy to work with in the rehearsal room. I hope to be directed by and generally collaborate with him in the future.
"His exceptional ability of perceiving the text."
Version 2.0, 2018
Kevin’s biggest strength as director lies in his exceptional ability of perceiving the text.
Kevin broke down the script into simpler layers that assisted the actors in understanding the “play within the play” structure. He gave the actors complete freedom to explore and give their own interpretation to the characters. He respected the script and made sure that the actors remained true to the text.
"He asks questions that focus me on the right things."
Development, Letting Go
WHORE: A Kid’s Play, 2017
As an emerging playwright, there are a few qualities I hope to find in a director. Chief among these are trust, dramaturgical guidance, the ability to motivate, and the passion/will to make things happen. In all of these categories, Kevin excels. During rehearsals, his input was tactful and focused on tone. As much of my work mixes genres and toes the line between drama and comedy, this kind of dramaturgical guidance proved invaluable. As a director developing a new play, he asks questions that focus me on the right things. This is no surprise as he is an accomplished dramatist himself. He also listens better than most directors I’ve worked with.
I have learned from previous collaborations that it’s more common to encounter those who are well meaning and aspirational. With Kevin, I know that a conversation will be followed by action and follow-thru.