Associate Artistic Director
Molly is proud to be back under the stars for her ninth season in Pen Park. She spent the past winter directing The Flick at Forward Theater Company in Madison, directing the premiere of Just a Little Critter Musical at First Stage, and acting in Fallen Angels at Milwaukee Chamber Theater. She is proud to make her entire artistic living in Wisconsin theaters and is grateful to call Northern Sky home. This fall she’ll appear in A Lovely Sunday for Creve Couer at Milwaukee Chamber Theater and UnSilent Night at Next Act Theater. She’ll also be directing Great Expectations at MCT in the spring. Molly’s favorite thing is listening to her four-year-old daughter sing Northern Sky songs, and she loves meeting families that have made Northern Sky their summer tradition. Thank you for supporting live theater and new musicals.
Rhode was born in Brookfield, WI into a family of musicians and began performing in plays at a young age. At 14, she was one of the first students to attend First Stage Theatre Academy when they opened their doors in 1992, and she later graduated as a Theatre Major from Milwaukee High School of the Arts. In 2000, She earned her B.F.A. in Theatre Studies with a double emphasis in Playwriting and Directing from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX. Missing the Midwest, she quickly returned to Wisconsin to begin her career.
A classically trained actor, she played several of Shakespeare’s leading ladies at Milwaukee Shakespeare Company, spent two summers with American Players Theatre, and two summers with Door Shakespeare. At the same time, she also became a regular face at the Skylight Music Theatre, singing lead roles in Cabaret, The Producers, and other Broadway musicals. She joined the Actor’s Equity Association in 2003 and has worked on all of Milwaukee’s professional stages and other theaters around the country.
Rhode first came to American Folklore Theatre in 2007 and has since originated roles in Cabin with a View, Main-Travelled Roads, Cheeseheads, Life on the Mississippi, Bing! The Cherry Musical, Victory Farm, and Strings Attached. Rhode began directing professionally in 2010 with a production of Main-Travelled Roads at Milwaukee Chamber Theatre. Soon after she directed productions at First Stage Children’s Theatre, Children’s Theatre of Madison, and most recently, Skylight Music Theatre’s acclaimed productions of The Sound of Music and Les Miserables. At AFT, Rhode directed last season’s Packer Fans from Outer Space and the world premiere of Windjammers.