Who I am

Jeffrey Puukka
Acting teacher, theatre director, drinker of coffee, creator and curator of the And, Not Or podcast.

I appreciate your curiosity!

Photo: Natasha Elizabeth Hass-Hauskins.

Here is some basic information about me.

I am curious and passionate about actor training, and have worked with actors as a director or teacher for 20 years.

I initiated and have facilitated the highly popular and successful Monday Night Acting Lab at Mt. Hood Community College since 2017. 

I was invited to teach at Metropolitan Performing Arts in 2017, and was asked to develop the Teen Actors Conservatory, a conservatory approach for teen students who wish to focus on acting.

I have frequently been invited to collaborate with Sam Barlow High School’s nationally celebrated Speech and Debate Team as an Interpretation Coach for students working with prose, poetry, or dramatic texts.

I have directed more than thirty productions in the Pacific Northwest over the last twenty years.  Some of my favorite projects include Dracula, Phaedra, David Adjmi’s Elective Affinities (in Portland, Edinburgh, and Cambodia), my own adaptation of Women of Troy, (from Euripides’ plays The Trojan Women and Hecuba), and Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire.

My deepest wish is to do work which accomplishes something different—and I hope more—than simply adding to the noise.  I know you know what I mean.  The noise is everywhere.  It is there for a reason, and I do not suggest we ignore it; it is important to stay informed. Still, I would argue that it’s necessary to our well-being to take breaks to nourish our individual and collective spirits.  That is at once my goal, and why I do what I do… to use my skill-set to make work and offer services that aspire toward something more empowering, inspiring, and uplifting.  I’m a theatre director, acting teacher, and life coach.  My work is headquartered in the Pacific Northwest, and I live in Vancouver, Washington.

I am enthusiastic about the mentorship process, and I am always interested in alternative pathways for education and learning.

Some of my other general interests include photography, cooking, walking and hiking, gardening, writing, and coffee.

Of all the work I have done, from theatre, to sales, to mental health advocacy, I have discovered I am at my best when I’m working with actors.  Whether I am wearing the professor hat, or working from the director’s chair makes no difference to me. It is the collaboration… the working with that feeds me. In a rehearsal room, a workshop, or in 1:1 Coaching or Consultations, I feel most alive myself when I’m helping people unblock themselves or their creativity, and set their authenticity and confidence free. Isn’t that the life we all deserve? To live with authenticity and be free?