Kumiko Mendl has worked as an actor, director, producer and teacher for more than thirty years. She is a founding member of New Earth Theatre and has been Artistic Director since 2011. She trained at the Jacques Lecoq Theatre School in Paris and worked as an actor with many theatres including the National Theatre, The Young Vic, Soho Theatre, The Gate, Northampton Royal & Derngate, Polka Theatre and The Unicorn as well as for television and radio.
She co-directed Flight Paths, The Last Days of Limehouse and directed Yeh Shen and Why the Lion Danced as well as numerous play readings for the company. She has taught at numerous drama schools including Mountview, Central School of Speech and Drama, Arts Ed and ALRA and was core tutor at Clean Break Theatre for over 10 years.
In recent years she has rediscovered her love of masks and had been teaching annually in Japan until the pandemic hit. Kumiko is also co-Artistic Director of A Thousand Cranes, a company she set up with children’s director Vicky Ireland, to bring the stories and art forms of Japan to UK young audiences. She is a trustee for Curious Directive and True Heart Theatre.