Assistant Professor of Theatre
Voice and Stage Speech
Shelly Gaza is an Assistant Professor of Theatre, specializing in Voice & Speech and Acting Styles. She has an MFA in Acting from Wayne State University, a BFA in Acting from Millikin University, and has studied at the Moscow Art Theatre School in Russia. Shelly is a member of Voice and Speech Trainers Association, Actors’ Equity Association and is Chair of the Denver Actors’ Equity Liaison Committee.
As an actor, Shelly has worked with theatre companies across the country including the Tony Award-winning Utah Shakespeare Festival, appearing in Twelfth Night, King Lear, The Merry Wives of Windsor, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Love’s Labour’s Lost, and The Taming of the Shrew. Other theatres include Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Colorado Shakespeare Festival, Paragon Theatre (Denver), Talisman Theatre (Chicago), and The JET and Hilberry Repertory Theatres in Detroit. She received the 2003 Oscar Wilde Award for Best Actress for her work in A Streetcar Named Desire at Hilberry Repertory, and the 2006 Finlayson Acting Award at the Utah Shakespeare Festival. Shelly has also performed with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra and done film, television and radio work including national commercials for HGTV, Red Roof Inn Hotels, and Coors Light. She and her family can also be seen in a current episode of the reality television program My First Sale.
As a director, Shelly received the 2009 award for Best Direction of a Period Play by the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (Region 5) for her production of Compleat Female Stage Beauty at Minnesota State University Moorhead. She has also directed for Backstage Theatre in Breckenridge, Colorado and Paragon Theatre in Denver.
Shelly has taught theatre at Minnesota State University Moorhead, Wayne State University, the Actor Training Program at Utah Shakespeare Festival/Southern Utah University, Lake Dillon Theatre Company, and the Eliot Street Collective in Denver. Shelly now lives in Thornton, Colorado with her husband and two children.