Melissa Crespo is a New York-based director who enjoys directing everything from classical to contemporary plays, as well as musicals and operas. She is most passionate about collaborating with playwrights and devising new work. She has developed plays at theatres such as: The Lark Play Development Center, Echo Theatre Company, Ars Nova, Morningside Opera, The Civilians R & D Group, Hangar Theatre, and The Public.
She is most known for ¡Figaro! (90210) which had it's world premiere at LA Opera and had it's NY premiere at The Duke on 42nd Street. Other operas include the undiscovered masterpiece Voodoo, a Harlem Renaissance opera by H. Lawrence Freeman that "soared" according to The Guardian. Produced by Morningside Opera, Harlem Opera Theater and the Harlem Chamber Players, the NY Times wrote that "the revival offers a glimpse of a nearly forgotten chapter of African-American operatic achievement."
Melissa also directed the most recent incarnation of Tar Baby written and performed by Desiree Burch with Dan Kitrosser. Hailed as one of Huffington Post's 'Favorite Female Comedians," Tar Baby was awarded the prestigious Scotsman Fringe First at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and has since had productions in London, New Zealand and Finland.
Melissa has served as the Allen Lee Hughes Directing Fellow at Arena Stage, Van Lier Directing Fellow at Second Stage Theatre and is a 2014 Drama League Fellow where she directed the world premiere of Maggie-Kate Coleman's The Map of Lost Things while in residence at the Hangar Theatre. She directed for the 2015 ABC Talent Showcase.
Currently, she is a Usual Suspect at New York Theatre Workshop and is a 2016-2018 Lab member of WP Theater (formerly The Women's Project). Melissa received her MFA in Directing from The New School for Drama.