Shakina Nayfack is an performer, director, writer, producer, and activist whose groundbreaking career has encompassed television, theater, and music. As the founding artistic director of Musical Theatre Factory, she has helped to develop hundreds of new musicals, including Michael R. Jackson’s Pulitzer Prize–winning A Strange Loop and her own autobiographical glam-rock odyssey, Manifest Pussy. In her work across mediums, Nayfack combines her own artistic motivation with advocacy, education, and acceptance.
Nayfack made history as the first transgender person to have a starring role in a network comedy, on NBC’s Connecting... She can also be seen in Amazon’s GLAAD Award–winning Transparent ("Musicale Finale"), which she helped write and produce, and Hulu’s Difficult People, for which she was a writing consultant. Her play Chonburi International Hotel and Butterfly Club premiered on Audible in 2020 in collaboration with Williamstown Theatre Festival and was recognized with a 2021 Drama League Award for Best Audio Theater Production. Nayfack is currently developing a sitcom based on her life, developing an original movie for Lifetime Television, and writing lyrics for the musical adaptation of Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmie Dean, Jimmie Dean with composer Dan Gillespie Sells and book writer Ashley Robinson.