Virginia Morris, a Harvard graduate, first studied acting and directing with Robert Chapman at the Loeb Theatre in Cambridge, Mass., then with Sanford Meisner and William Esper in New York and with Paul Sills in Chicago. She performed regionally at theatres in Cleveland, Seattle, New York and Chicago, and, in Alaska, directed Uncle Vanya and Arthur Kopit’s Indians.
After spending three summers acting at the Sundance Institute’s Playwright’s Lab, she moved to Los Angeles and, with Didi Conn, Peter Hay and Ethan Phillips, helped found First Stage, Hollywood, an organization dedicated to developing new works for the stage and screen, where she has been acting in and directing staged readings and workshops for 22 years and currently serves on the artistic committee.
She has appeared in the films The Boost, Switch, Shocker, Bonfire of the Vanities, Mother, Species, ...and the earth did not swallow him,The Facts of Life, Zoe, and most recently Yvette Freeman’s Remember. Examples of television work include the telefilms Not My Kid, An Uncommon Love, A Different Affair, Skates, Lucky Chances, Intruders, Donato and Daughter, and Norma and Marilyn; episodes of ER, Dharma and Greg, Cracker, and Lost, as well as the pilots for Making Out, The Flash, Murphy’s Law and ER. She was nominated for an ADA award for acting in Sea Marks at the Raven Playhouse and won a Dramalogue for directing Adam & Eva Marie at Actors Art Theatre.
In 2000, she and her late husband, Jimmie F. Skaggs, founded ShapeShifter Productions, for which she directed the world premiere of Mimi’s Guide (which was nominated for four ADA awards- including one for direction of a new play) and the critically acclaimed comedy ...Anton’s Abandoned Story Cycle ... . In 2003, she co-produced for ShapeShifter the world premiere of Let The Rocks Speak, about the Armenian Genocide of 1915, at the Fountain Theatre. In 2004, she co-directed, with Richard Kuhlman, the world premiere of Shawn Muir’s comedy, Scathed, and in 2005, she directed the staged reading of Peter Cook and William Lanouette’s Uranium and Peaches, starring Ed Asner, Scott Wilson, and Joe Estevez, at the Raven Playhouse. Recently at Actor’s Art, she appeared in the evening of Maria Daleo’s poems, As If It Was Real.