Since childhood I have believed in the magic of theatre. I am a storyteller, performer, director, producer, teacher and creator. I love getting my hands dirty, building sets, climbing on ladders, working ridiculous hours and being one part of a much larger whole.
I believe the power of a well-told story can transform the Universe. I believe in believing.
When I was a little girl I had a babysitter with a prosthetic leg. I LOVED this babysitter; I had a little girl crush. I used to watch her out my kitchen window, she had a bright yellow Volkswagen bug, the cutest boyfriend, and every morning her ponytail would swish back and forth when she jogged. Sometimes if she wanted my brother and I to be good she would say, “If you are quiet I will take my leg off for you.” Giggling we would go silent. She would take of her prosthetic and dance around the house with one leg. Oh my god we loved that.
When I was 24 I was hit by a Mac truck. The truck driver was trying to beat a cab around the corner. My roommate saw him out of the corner of her eye pulled me back a step, was hit by the side mirror and flung across the street. I got my foot pinned under the wheel. When he backed the truck up I was pulled into fetal, my foot was detached from my ankle, and it was what they called fully “de-gloved”. The pain was so searing that my brain couldn’t centralize where the pain was coming from. When I turned around and saw what appeared to be an unsalvageable foot, I experienced a profoundly defining moment. My memory, and my will to survive, instantly pulled forward the babysitter I hadn’t thought of in 20 years. I had an overwhelming sense that I would be ok. That whether or not I kept my foot I could remain in the theatre, I would still be working, I would still be an active member of society, and most importantly I would move forward into a rich fulfilled life.
In a millisecond I learned two essential lessons. I learned the power of connectivity. Every person has a story, every story is connected to another story, every story leaves an imprint, and therefore, every story has value. A simple story literally has the power to save a life. It is comforting to know that no matter how unimportant one may think their story is it is an integral part of the fabric of the universe.
The second thing I learned is that perception determines our outcome. I realized there are 2 types of people. Those that let crisis impede their lives, and those who see crisis for what it is; a turning point. They view it as a chance for positive growth and forward motion. At the end of the day we do not know how our stories have affected the world around us. I’m sure my babysitter has no idea that she was a key component to my future. Our only real job is to keep moving forward. And to move forward one must find ways to stay inspired. All our pain, angst, fears, depression, whatever it is, is not ours to judge it is just there. What is remembered, what is lauded, what is revered is motion. My purpose and ambition as a director is to inspire that motion by honoring stories that create connection.
Kara M. Tyler is a graduate of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts (NY, Angel Award Recipient) and received her BA in Theater with a minor in Psychology from Temple University (Magna Cum Laude). She has worked as a director with various theater companies on the East Coast and LA including Kings County Shakespeare Company (NYC), Assembly Line Theater (LA), and Theater Workshop of Nantucket(Artistic Director John Shea). She was the Artistic Director and founding member of the production company Groove MaMa Ink LLC that resided at the Gene Frankel (Underground) Theater in NYC. Groove MaMa Ink produced and facilitated numerous festivals, monthly shows, short films, and a “docummercial”. She has also been a teaching artist with MCC Theater (Artistic Director Robert LuPone), GilgameshTheater, Shakespeare’s Playground and others. Some of her favorite career highlights include doing dramaturgy for 3 days-The Tragedy of Hamlet with Richard Chamberlain and performing a triple orgasm for Eve Ensler.