Debra Krajec
Mrs. Debra KrajecMarquette University

Helfaer Theatre, 111

MilwaukeeWI53201United States of America
(414) 288-1504(414) 288-7048 (FAX)

Associate Professor, Digital Media and Performing Arts


Master of Fine Arts in Theatre May 1982
Texas Christian University Fort Worth, Texas
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre
May 1979 Texas Christian University Fort Worth, Texas

Courses Taught

THAR 1020 Theatre Appreciation
THAR 1150 Acting for Non Majors
THAR 1320 Basic Costume Technology
THAR 1340 Stage Makeup
THAR 2500 Stage Direction
THAR 3953 Career Prep
THAR 4100 Acting 5: Auditioning and Career Prep
THAR 4220 History of Costume & Clothing I
THAR 4230 History of Costume & Clothing II
THAR 4240 Period Styles for the Theatre
THAR 4340 Advanced Costume techniques
THAR 4400 Costume Design
THAR 4500 Advanced Directing
THAR 4953 Senior Capstone Project
THAR 4999 Senior Thesis

Research Interests

History of Clothing
Stage Directing Methodologies
Costume Design
French Playwright and Actor-manager
Digital Costume Rendering

Professional Experience

Deb has been an active, professional costume designer, having designed for Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, G.B. Shaw Festival-Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, Next Act Theatre, Northern Stage Company, Theatre Tesseract, The Ring of Steel Action Entertainment Group, Porthouse Theatre - Blossom Summer Festival, Casa Mañana Playhouse - Fort Worth, TX, and The Fort Worth Theatre.

She has directed professionally for In Tandem Theatre, Playwright’s Theatre of Milwaukee, Playwright’s Studio Theatre, and Casa Mañana Playhouse. She is also an Equity actress.

At Marquette, Deb has designed costumes for over 60 Mainstage productions, and directed over 20 plays.

Professional Affiliations

Deb has been very active in the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (the only professional organization in the US for theatre designers and technicians) since 1980 and has held several national offices, the two most important being Commissioner of the Costume Design & Technology Commission (1997-2002) and a Director-at-Large for the National Board of Directors (2006-2009, 1994-1997, and 2003-2006). 

Deb is serving a three-year term as a Director-at-Large for United States Institute for Theatre Technology.  She was named a Fellow of the Institute, which is an honorary designation bestowed for life upon those USITT members who have made a truly outstanding contribution to the profession of theatre and the work of USITT.  Further, Deb has been active in the Midwest Section of USITT since 1989 and has held the following offices at the regional level: Chair, USITT Midwest Section (1994-1996), Member Executive Board, USITT Midwest (1990-1993).

Additional affiliations include a member of the Costume Society of America, a member of the Alpha Psi Omega National Honorary Dramatic Fraternity, and has been a member of Actor’s Equity Association since 1983.

Honors and Awards

2015: Certificate of Merit for costume design for "To Kill a Mockingbird," Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival

2011: John P. Raynor, S. J. Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence at Marquette University

2009: Special Commendation for Achievement in Costume Design for "Censored on Final Approach," Kennedy Center American College Theatre, Festival Region III

2008: Named a Fellow of the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT)

2005: United States Institute for Theatre Technology Midwest Section Founder's Award

2001: Director of MU Theatre's production of "The Merry Wives of Windsor," which was selected to participate in the Kennedy Center / American College Theatre Festival's Region III competition, Jan. 2001 in Evansville, IN.

1999: Dean’s Recognition Award for Outstanding Teaching, College of Communication

1997: Dean’s Award for Outstanding Service to the University, College of Communication

Artistic Work

Costume Design, "Dad’s Season Tickets," Milwaukee Repertory Theatre
(in progress – postponed due to Covid-19)

Costume Design, "Nunsense," Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, November 2019

Costume Design, "Godspell," Saint Michael's Playhouse, June 2019

Director, "Most Dangerous Women," with Milwaukee Public Theatre (in progress).

Costume Design, "Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse," First Stage Milwaukee, May 2016.

Costume Design, "Censored On Final Approach," Renaissance Theaterworks, April 2016.

Costume Design, "To Kill a Mockingbird," Marquette Theatre Arts, Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival Region 3 (KCACTF), Milwaukee, WI, January 2016.

Costume Design, "Wait Until Dark," produced by Saint Michael's Playhouse, Colchester VT, 2015.

Costume Design, "The Train Driver," produced by Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, 2015.

Costume Design, "Arsenic and Old Lace," produced by Saint Michael's Playhouse, Colchester VT, 2014.

Costume Design, "Lend Me A Tenor," produced by Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, 2014.

Costume Design, "Gathering Blue," (world premiere of new script), produced by First Stage Milwaukee, 2013.

Costume Design, "Lion in Winter," produced by Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, 2011.

Costume Design,"Holy Days," produced by Retro Productions, New York, NY (off-off-Broadway), 2009.

Costume Design, “Poor Tom” by Martin Maguire. Chosen for presentation at KCACTF Region III Festival, January 2008.

Director, “” by Joseph Gardner, an original work presented as part of the young playwrights Festival presented by Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, December 2008.

“Trying,” Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, Nov. 16 – Dec 16, 2007, C. Michael Wright (dir)

Stage Director for “No Safety in Numbers” by Stan Peale, and performed the role of “Friend” in PARTY by Laura MacMahon for the Playwright’s Studio theatre 10 Minute Play Festival Nov.-Dec. 2006

Costume design for the musical “BABY” at Casa Mañana Theatre, Fort Worth TX, April 2005

Stage Director for “What Corbin Knew” by Jeffrey Hatcher, produced by In Tandem Productions, Milwaukee WI May–June 2004

Costume Designer for “Mindgame” by Anthony Horowitz, directed by Kurt Hartwig, produced by Next Act Theatre, Milwaukee WI - Sept.-Oct. 2003

Why Marquette

Deb came to Marquette in 1984 after working in professional theatre expecting to stay a few years, and hasn’t left yet! She fell in love with MU students – they are smart, hardworking and talented. She believes in the liberal arts approach to training theatre artists, and knows MU is a special place where Performing Arts undergrads get unique training and opportunities not offered in other BA programs. She also appreciates the freedom to “cross over” at MU – to be able to design AND direct AND perform. She encourages her students to be students to be cross-trained as well, which increases their employment potential and gives them informed insight into all areas of the art and craft of theatre.