Jeffrey Puukka is
A coffee-loving fellow of Finnish and Irish roots, who likes walking, cooking, writing, and sitting by the fire thinking and daydreaming.
Professionally, Jeffrey works with actors. He gets his greatest joy in working with actors to solve interpretive puzzles, or find the clarity and confidence they need and deserve.
Some of Jeffrey’s favorite projects over 20+ years of directing include:
Steven Dietz’ This Random World: The Myth of Serendipity.
Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire.
Polly Teale’s Mermaid.
David Adjmi’s Elective Affinities, which performed in Scotland and Cambodia after opening in Portland, OR.
Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.
His own adaptation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
His own adaptation of Women of Troy, inspired by Euripides.
Work with actors
Jeffrey is passionately curious about actor training and has collaborated as a coach for actors ranging eight to eighty years of age.
In addition to facilitating the highly popular Monday Night Acting Lab which he initiated in 2017, Jeffrey has taught for the American Association of Community Theatres, the East Metro Arts and Culture Council, he has guest lectured about Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire at the University of Washington, and facilitated other learning opportunities at several spots throughout the region.
He is currently engaged (as of 2021) as an acting instructor for Metropolitan Performing Arts (Vancouver, WA), Mt. Hood Community College, (Gresham, OR), and as an interpretive speaking coach for Sam Barlow High School’s nationally recognized Speech and Debate team.
As an acting coach, Jeffrey works 1:1 with actors and acting-curious souls seeking support with many kinds of work actors do. You can book Jeffrey here.
Creativity and community
When the Covid-19 pandemic found its way to the Pacific Northwest in 2020, theatres closed, and social gatherings were difficult. Jeffrey began Notes to Dearie, which was an experimental project about optimism and serendipity. Jeffrey began writing short, optimistic, handwritten messages, and hiding them in public places where strangers could discover them. Jeffrey scattered these notes all around the Portland Metro area, as well as Hood River, and the Oregon Coast.
ANTI-RACISM COMMITMENT / COLLABORATION PHILOSOPHY
Jeffrey Puukka welcomes people of all races, ages, religions, political affiliations, genders, countries of origin, sexual orientations, sizes, and abilities into collaboration with him, and the projects he facilitates as an independent theatre practitioner. Jeffrey is committed to anti-racism as a core thread of his own ongoing education, and a core value in his ongoing independent practice.