Meet Eli Sibley 


An actor and theatre professional for over 20 years, Eli's credits include production, playwrighting, and movement direction.  She's worked nationally and internationally, most recently with Dramatic Adventure Theatre and West Virginia University for their Heart of Europe tour as Movement Director.  Her one woman movement, storytelling piece, Born of a Fairytale was produced both in DC and New York to great applause.  And the inaugural production of the company she founded with her husband, Vacant Lot Theatre Co, was privileged to work closely with renowned playwright, Erik Ehn, bringing Child's Drawing of a Monster to its world and New England premiers in New York and then in Boston.  Along with her MFA and AmSat Alexander Technique certification, she is also a certified Laban Movement Analyst. She currently works with local theater companies and acting studios and teaches Mindfulness and 55+, Acting, and Pre-natal Alexander Technique classes in the Twin Cities.  She gives private lessons in her home studio, Up&Back Alexander Technique and Performance Studio.  


I was a dancer from a young age, in my living room, to the sounds of The Age of Aquarius, The Nutcracker Suite, and my mother on the piano with The Entertainer and The Spinning Song.  Although I attended a couple of one-off dance classes it wasn't something I actually pursued.  Why?  Idunno.  I also turned to writing for a short while, short stories and poetry.  That, too, was never seriously followed up.  Eventually I turned to acting as my artistic, and hopefully, lifetime endeavor.  This I pursued with actual degrees, internships, studies abroad, and continuing education.  This was how I was going to make it.  (Define: make it)

After spending a lot of money, which is what I perceived as a path towards greatness, or at least steady casting, I ventured forth to New York.  And got wore out.  I was old for New York, or for just getting there and starting out.  And this was like my fourth starting out in a new city.  I had also just gotten married and wanted that settling down feeling rather than that never seeing my new husband, pounding the pavement, working late hours catering/serving feeling.  But we both persevered and made an honest go of it.  I made connections through classes and small off off off, I said OFF, Broadway productions and together we had our own theatre company.  And that was good.  But I knew, at this point in my life, I now needed more, something else, that next endeavor; I had pursued Acting long enough and it wasn't fulfilling anymore.

I ended following up on two programs that were also primary considerations for moving to New York, along with theatre and film/television.  I looked into doing the LIMS' Laban Movement Certification and The AmSAT Alexander Technique Certification at The Balance Arts Center.  Since I was already feeling old, I felt I should get on it and do them at the exact same time.  So I did.  I was still in love with dance/movement and over the years found myself consistently drawn to theatre pieces with "movement" attached to the audition notice.  When doing my study abroad, I was introduced to both techniques and felt an affinity towards each of them and how they could better me as a performer.  Although, honestly, that didn't really come to a reality until I pursued certification.  Now I'm awesome!  

Anyway, so I got my certifications, met some wonderful amazing people, got to collaborate with some of them too and now I teach and direct movement.  I will continue to pursue Acting after my babies are a little older because I still enjoy it, particularly because I feel I have improved and I'd like to find out if the world thinks so too.  I also continue to write and actually completed a one woman story telling movement (of course) piece back in Grad school (thank you deadlines!). 

My teaching includes private lessons to artists and non alike in my home and group classes through various organizations around the Twin Cities.  I love teaching the Alexander Technique, movement and acting.  I love it I love it I love it.  I work with athletes, seniors, beekeepers, and pre-natals as well as performers of all varieties.  At this point in my life, this is my making it and in one way or another, I can help others make it too.  

EliSibley -
It was refreshing to be led by someone with such a clear sense of the world (both physical and otherwise) of the production — (Eli) took control of our few sessions together in a way that made me feel absolute trust in her, both as a person and as an artist. Starting with “macro” concepts (i.e., hipster and restoration) allowed me to wade into Alceste’s physicality at just the right pace... the “macro” work led clearly and smoothly toward the more “micro,” specific movement work with the Misanthrope characters — the idea to have us play ourselves and then play other characters in the world was especially helpful, both because personal impressions were so integral to our world of the play and because finding extreme contrasts in movement helped break open my own ideas of how Alceste moved (and solidified some ideas I had been inkling around with).
— Matthew Ellis Murphy, actor