Diane Robinson is a versatile speech, performance, and communications professional with 30 years’ experience performing, directing, writing, producing and developing new plays for professional theater. She has worked within the medical and academic arenas, having conducted Breath and Empathy workshops for students at Rush Medical Center and having worked alongside conducting fellows on Performance and Presence for the Chicago Sinfonietta. Additionally, Diane has coached accents for a variety of high profile clients and groups, including most recently NBC’s Chicago Fire and for theaters and universities around the country. Diane also teaches nationally in a wide range of acting and performance skills, including Audition Skills, Acting, Diction, Accents, Movement and Shakespeare, Playwriting, Theater History, and Linklater Voice.
Diane is actively developing research projects around her focus on transgender voice and communication, and leads drop-in voice classes for the community at Howard Brown Medical Center and for The Voice Lab, Inc. She has presented on transgender voice at academic conferences and outreach events for the Center on Halsted, and she recently directed a gender-bending adaptation of Little Red Riding Hood for City Lit Theater.
In addition to her theater and performance work, Diane is unique in her vantage point as a coach who has spent a major part of her career working for large corporations – corporate litigation firms and most recently for a firm led by the president of the board of the Chicago ACLU. She is therefore uniquely familiar with both the world of performance and the world of high stakes, outcomes-driven corporate practices and brings these perspectives to bear on the work with her corporate coaching clients.
Diane has an MFA in Theater from the University of California, Irvine and is a certified Fitzmaurice® Voicework teacher. She is currently pursuing certification in Knight-Thompson Speechwork, a speech training method that creates awareness of the physical actions of speech to help clients learn – and unlearn! – accents. Diane is the chair of the Teaching & Learning Committee of the Voice and Speech Trainers Association and a 30-year member of the Actors Equity Association.
Diane lives on Chicago’s northside with her college sweetheart and enjoys swimming in Lake Michigan.