Kirsten Dahl

In fifth grade, Kirsten wrote and staged her first production in the auditorium of the New Meadow School in Newington, Connecticut. Entitled The Jewel of Madasillas, the play used dance and comedy (well, a 10-year-old’s idea of comedy) to enact the saga of a princess who is kidnapped by an evil Egyptian noble and the prince who attempts to save her but first tangles with some marsh spirits called Milikis, represented by classmates in black leotards draped with scarves. 

A bit later, Kirsten attended Goddard College in Vermont and graduated from Oberlin College in Ohio with a B.A. in English and no employable skills. She made matters worse by taking night classes at Playwrights Horizons Theatre School, studying with Will Reale (artistic director of the 52nd Street Project). The school selected her first play, Packed House, for a workshop production. After hearing laughter where it was actually intended, Kirsten was hooked. 

After moving to Los Angeles with her husband a year later, Kirsten served as literary manager at L.A. Theatre Works, which produces live-in-performance radio theater for broadcast on National Public Radio. Her second play, New York Profiles--which eventually became Della Doucet-- was performed by L.A. Theater Works and aired on KCRW, Santa Monica’s NPR station. The play was also selected for a playwriting workshop led by Terrence McNally at the 92nd Street Y and received staged readings at two L.A. theaters: The Keck Theater at Occidental College and Theatre West. Her satirical comedy, Bamberwood, was produced at the Met Theatre in Hollywood in 1997, where the run was extended after warm reviews in the L.A. Times, L.A. Weekly and Buzz Magazine.

In 1999, Kirsten and Tim had twin daughters and began a decade of moving and child-rearing, in Santa Monica, Denver, Colorado and Rye, New York. During that time, Kirsten completed her first mystery novel, Last Resort. Set in a desert resort full of Mid-Century Modern architecture, very like Palm Springs, the book features a transplanted New York social worker who tries to clear her sister of murder charges. The book is currently represented by Brandt & Hochman Literary Agents in New York.

Kirsten is a member of the Dramatists Guild of New York and Sisters in Crime.