Kalean Ung is an award-winning multi-disciplinary theater artist whose professional career ranges from Shakespeare to experimental theater to contemporary opera and solo performance. She has performed at The Kirk Douglas Theatre, Disney Hall, REDCAT, The Getty Villa, The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA, Boston Court Pasadena, The Hammer Museum, The Actors’ Gang, among others, collaborating with critically-acclaimed theater and opera companies including Critical Mass Performance Group, The Industry, The LA Philharmonic, Rogue Artists Ensemble, Independent Shakespeare Company, Four Larks Theatre, and CalArts Center for New Performance. Kalean’s voice acting can be heard as the lead in the English version of Denis Do’s award-winning, animated feature about the Cambodian genocide, Funan, The Duplass Brothers’ Cinema Toast on Showtime, among others. This past summer she performed in the world premiere of Both Eyes Open, an experimental chamber opera in San Francisco. She was also Lady Macbeth in Independent Shakespeare Co.’s Macbeth at the Griffith Park Free Shakespeare Festival.
Her solo play Letters From Home (LFH) will have its East Coast premiere at Merrimack Repertory Theatre in 2023. LFH has had performances at Independent Shakespeare Company, UC San Diego, Cambodia Town Film Festival, Willamette University, LA Mission College, UC Irvine, as well as a four-camera live-stream adaptation that was workshopped at Boston Court Pasadena. In addition to these residences, she co-curated a companion exhibit called “Music, Letters, Home: An Exhibition celebrating the Journey of Composer Chinary Ung and Actor Kalean Ung” at The Orange County & Southeast Asian Archive Center. LFH has received support from the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, CalArts, and MAPP Fund. Kalean was just awarded the competitive California Arts Council Established Artist Fellowship for her artistic work spanning the last ten years.
Kalean teaches The Barrantes Voice System in the Theater School at California Institute of the Arts. She has also taught at California State University, Los Angeles and Northridge. She received her Master of Fine Arts in Acting from California Institute of the Arts and her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of California at Santa Cruz.