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Elizabeth Swain


Professor Emerita of Theatre Arts


Theatre Arts


Elizabeth Swain is an English born actor, director and teacher who has lived in Los Angeles since 2008, where she is a member of the Antaeus Company. She made her Broadway debut in Charley’s Aunt, opposite Louis Nye and Maureen O’Sullivan. Other Broadway credits include Crown Matrimonial with Eileen Herlie and George Grizzard, Sherlock Holmes with Robert Stephens and a featured role in the NYC Opera’s production of The Crucible, directed by Frank Corsaro. Other acting work includes regional theatres, national tours and plays off and off off Broadway. In Los Angeles she has played the Third Witch in Antaeus‘ Macbeth, Chorus in Oedipus the Man at the Getty Villa, the Ghost in the LA Women’s Shakespeare Company’s Hamlet, the Pope in Top Girls for Antaeus, and in The Clean House for Cal Rep and has appeared in several Antaeus Classicfest readings. On television she was on One Life to Live, As the World Turns and played Emily for five years on The Guiding Light. She has an active voice over career, including recorded books.

Recent directing credits include King Lear with The Southwest Shakespeare Company, Hamlet and Measure for Measure (co directed with Armin Shimerman) which closed prematurely because of the pandemic, Early Birds for Moving arts, The Two Noble Kinsmen for the Kingsmen Shakespeare Festival, An Evening of Betrayal for The 6th Act and Forever House for Skylight. She also directed Macbeth for CSULB, Marston’s The Malcontent for Antaeus, Master Harold and the Boys for Cape May Stage, A Midsummer Night’s Dream for CSULB and The Love of the Nightingale and a Shakespeare evening for AMDA, LA. For Antaeus Classicsfest she has directed Medea, KIng John, The Lucky Chance and The Master Builder amongst others and has directed School for Wives, Hay Fever, and The School For Scandal for the Classical Theatre Lab. Other favorite productions include plays by Aphra Behn and Timberlake Wertenbaker, The Winter’s Tale, Hamlet, Stoppard’s Arcadia and Pam Gems’ Camille. For The 6th Act she directed a staged reading of Julius Caesar

Elizabeth has led text discussions at Antaeus on Richard II, The Tempest, The Winter’s Tale, and King John, and was awarded an NEH fellowship to study Shakespeare’s staging at the Blackfriars in Virginia and Shakespeare’s Globe in London. She has taught for the Teachers’ Workshops at the Huntington Library, at A Noise Within and is a regular faculty member with the Antaeus Academy. In NY she taught at the Michael Howard and T Schreiber studios and at NYU, CCNY, Hunter College, Barnard College and is currently Professor Emerita at Marymount Manhattan College where she taught until her relocation to Los Angeles, She holds a Ph D from the CUNY Graduate Center.