Erika was born in Colorado and raised riding horses, camping & hiking, and eating illegal amounts of Kraft macaroni and cheese. The middle child of five playful and creative goofballs, it was no surprise that her 1998 portrayal of Outlaw Annie in Lewis-Palmer Elementary’s Pecos Bill marked the beginning of a promising career.
She joined Thespian Troupe 5450 in high school and spent a summer at the National High School Institute’s Theatre Cherubs program. Her passion for the work and for the communities that form around it led her to the acting program at University of Northern Colorado, where she earned her B.A.
College primed her for an acting career, but it wasn't until she found herself in the tempest of New York City that she truly uncovered her creative voice and artistic identity. An activist at heart, in 2015 she was brought on as the Director of Online Communities for StateraArts, a non-profit organization working to bring women* and nonbinary artists into full and equal participation in the arts. She also joined the efforts for prison reform, working at Rikers Prison as an actor-trainer for their crisis intervention training program-- a workshop training their DOC officers and mental health clinicians to access their empathy and de-escalate inmates without the use of force.
Erika's acting endeavors in NYC largely consisted of Shakespeare works, a spontaneously-arising interest that ignited a deep appreciation and genuine love for these classical expressions of timeless and universal themes. Her experience in the city also encouraged her to pursue an MFA in Acting, which she will be completing at the University of Washington, spring of '21. Erika is currently based in Seattle with her husband, Adam.
If all goes as planned, Erika will work in several Shakespeare Festivals, write a one-woman show, and run a female-led theatre company. Ideally all of this will be in collaboration with artists who share her passion for innovative, audacious and inclusive work.
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