Michael Heil has designed scenery and/or costumes for dance, opera and theatre throughout the United States and Europe. Recent design credits include Blood Wedding, Oedipus King, Outlying Islands, Woyzeck (Upstream Theatre), Much Ado About Nothing, Twelfth Night, (Trinity Shakespeare Festival), The Crucible, Lonesome Highway, You Can’t Take It With You (Capital Repertory Theatre), Proof (PlayMakers Repertory Theatre), Buried Child, Art, The Brech Project, The Illusion, Cinderella (Clarence Brown Theatre), A Delicate Balance (7 Stages), O’Carolan’s Farewell to Music (Vermont Repertory Theatre), and Buried Child (Teatr am. Stefana Jaracza, Poland).
He has designed for distinguished directors Joe Chaikin, Blake Robison, Veronika Nowag-Jones and Philip Boehm. His designs have been published in TD&T, World Stage Design and Design USA. He has twice exhibited at the Prague Quadrennial, a peer-reviewed international theatre exposition held every four years in the Czech Republic. From 2000-2004 he was the resident designer for the Clarence Brown Theatre, a LORT Theatre in Knoxville, TN. Since 2007 he has been the resident designer for Upstream Theatre in St. Louis, MO. Michael’s design for Trinity Shakespeare Festival’s Twelfth Night won the 2009 Dallas-Fort Worth Critics Forum Award for Outstanding Creative Contribution. Criticalrant.com included his scenic design for Trinity Shakespeare Festival’s production of Much Ado About Nothing as “Best on Stage in 2010” listing. Michael’s set for Upstream Theater’s production of Oedipus King (2010) was both a Kevin Kline nominee and the Judith Newmark winner for Outstanding Scene Design.
In 2009 he became Design Chair for Region 6 of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCATF). In 2008 and 2010 he served as National Co-adjudicator for both the Rose Brand Award for Excellence in Graduate Scenic Design and the W. Oren Parker Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Scene Design.
Michael holds MFAs in theatre design (University of Texas at Austin) and studio art (Schiller University, Strasbourg, France). He is a member of the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT), the Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC), the Organisation International des Scénographes, Techniciens, et Architectes de Théâtre (OISTAT) and United Scenic Artists, Local 829.