Biography

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Jaclyn Biskup is the Associate Producer and Production Manager at Smartypants Pictures, a New York-based boutique production company that produces award-winning documentaries, feature films, commercials, and digital media. Dedicated to creating artful, engaging work with a social conscience, Smartypants' productions have appeared on HBO, PBS, A&E, Bravo, Showtime, and many others.

Jaclyn was the Associate Producer on the Emmy nominated PBS NOVA web series, The Secret Life of Scientists and Engineers and Co-Produced the newly launched series, The Secret Life of Muslims, which uses humor and empathy to subvert stereotypes and reveal the truth about American Muslims while providing a counter-narrative to the rampant Islamophobia prevalent in the media. At Smartypants, Biskup has also worked as Associate Producer on branded content for social media and web for Delta Air Lines, CalTech, Harvard, Duke, and others.

Prior to her role at Smartypants, Jaclyn was the founding Artistic Director of The Mill (fka Experimental Theatre Chicago) where she directed over 15 productions.

In NYC, she has worked with Imported Talent’s Fresh Produce’d, Core Ensemble, Re Group, Cellar Door, Blue Box Productions, Hearth Gods, and Horse Trade Theatre. She has directed 13 productions with The Mill, including The Private Lives of Eskimos, A Dream Play, Venus, The Madman and the Nun, Desdemona: A Play About A Handkerchief, Big Love, The Bald Soprano, Mexico, and off. She has conceived and directed:Un-American Activities, An Unenchanted Evening, The Eve Project, and Coming and Going. She has assisted on productions with Steppenwolf, The Public, and The American Musical Theatre Workshop.

 

She received a Bachelor’s degree in Theater from Northern Illinois University and a Master of Fine Arts in Directing and Theatrical Production from Northwestern University.

Artist Statment

I believe that the theatre is an inherently political space and therefore create work with the intention of affecting positive change in our society.  The act of mimesis allows art to illuminate, reconstruct, and ultimately reinvent our world.  As a politically conscious director, I recognize the magnitude of this power and consciously create and manipulate images to control the meanings they produce. It is my purpose to challenge outdated paradigms and disrupt the status quo by creating productions which utilize progressive ideologies. 

I consider myself a feminist and see this inextricable from my work as an artist. Feminism seeks to make the world a better place by expanding freedom for all people.  It is an ever-expanding and constantly evolving concept which contributes to an inclusive way of thinking.  By embracing this truly progressive politic, my work actively challenges representations of sex, gender, sexuality, race, and class.  I also have a special interest in making choices that challenge hegemonic notions of both femininity and masculinity that would otherwise conflate gender with biological sex and reify gender binaries. By actively constructing representations that both draw attention to and challenge these binaries, I believe that I can create and popularize new possibilities for all bodies, both on stage and in life.  I can stage whatever I imagine and believe it is possible to affect change as radical as I can dream.