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Will Wilhelm

trans/non-binary actor and queer crusader (they/them)

Will Wilhelm (they/them) is an actor and educator based in Chicago, IL, where they earned their BA in Theatre from Northwestern University before becoming the first non-binary company member at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. There, they reimagined genderqueer characters in AS YOU LIKE IT, MACBETH, and Bill Rauch’s OKLAHOMA! They are the co-creator and performer of GENDER PLAY. Other notable achievements include creating the role of Person in Charge in the Midwest Premiere of STRAIGHT WHITE MEN, written and directed by Young Jean Lee, at Steppenwolf Theatre; playing Angel in Metropolis Performing Arts Centre’s production of RENT, for which they won a BroadwayWorld Chicago Award; and performing full texts bilingually in Spanish and English. Additional theatre affiliations include Victory Gardens Theater, Williamstown Theatre Festival, and About Face Theatre Company. In 2020, Will wrote “Gender is Performance” for HowlRound and was featured in the Chicago Tribune. Will is represented by Gray Talent Group.

In their free time, they enjoy board game nights, dancing in their collection of platform heels, and eating the gender binary for breakfast.

two actors onstage
Gender is Performance
Essay

Gender is Performance

Why Trans* Actors Should Transcend the Character Breakdown

24 February 2020

Will Wilhelm argues that trans* actors are particularly skilled at performing gender and questions why it is so rare to see them perform on large stages.