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Shadow on Concrete Wall
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Hey! I'm Danielle!

My friends call me D. Or sometimes just Gallo.


It's hard to answer when people ask what I do, because I wear so many hats! I'm an actor. I'm a teacher I'm a human rights advocate, specifically for disability and gender rights. I'm the #3 ranked blue belt rooster weight Brazilian Jiu Jitsu grappler in the world. I'm a coach, a poet, a playwright, a marketing content creator, a dramaturg, a director, a regional chess champion, a future winner of the television show Survivor, and so much more. I guess I ~contain multitudes~ or whatever.

I'm based in Washington, DC, and I have been for several years now-- ever since I graduated from American University's Honors Program back in 2019, where I was the first ever double major in Theatre and International Relations.

But I learned the importance of community, and how to stand up for what I believe in from my very fiery Italian family. I grew up in South Jersey, right outside of Philly, where there are no shortages of opinions.​

(It's gravy, not "pasta sauce.") ​

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As a theatre artist, I'm most interested in work that challenges norms and inspires discussion, especially if that work explores the implicit and explicit politics of identity and existence.
I'm also a huge fan of Shakespeare reimagined in modern contexts, magical hyperrealism, and innovative audience participation (!!!). 

Here's what you should to know about my "approach" as an actor. I ask lots of questions. I make bold, imaginative choices. I believe in telling the truth, above all. I am a collaborator. I am very physical. I get notes on using my hands too much. My team on a show (cast, director, designers, whoever) becomes my family-- and it is that trust and unconditional love that makes this job so fun, and so beautiful.

I do theatre because it is the only art form whose lifeblood is human connection, spontaneity, and empathy. It leads with the heart. And there's something pretty extraordinary about the messiness and absurdity of being a human, too.


In addition to being an actor, I also work as Project Coordinator for Family Voices National-- a nonprofit, community-led organization that advocates and builds networks for families of children with special health care needs and disabilities. As a queer, first-generation college graduate with disabilities myself, I have made it my mission to advocate for inclusion and accessibility. 

Before this, I worked for several organizations and coordinated global efforts in gender rights, educational access, mental health advocacy, democratic governance empowerment, global health, human rights, religious freedom, and cross-cultural exchanges in post-genocidal countries and specifically in the Balkans. I believe that the arts, and theatre, can be used as a tool to solve global problems, and promote healing and reconciliation in post-war communities.


In college, I studied all across Europe (based in Brussels, Belgium) and worked at an organization called the European Disability Forum that fought for rights of over 200 million persons with disabilities. I wrote laws, gave presentations in front of the European Parliament, and helped manage the organization's communications and political strategy.

I'm also an educator! I work a ton with multilingual students with disabilities, ranging in age from 3 years old to 17 years old. I teach theatre classes, develop movement based curriculums for preschoolers, and run the kids program at my martial arts gym. I love my students more than anything, and nothing inspires me more than their success and joy.

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I'm passionate, ambitious, fearless, and my heart takes up 80% of my 4'11" frame.


I have very strong opinions on dairy-free ice cream, I thrive in warm weather, I use way too many exclamation points, and I could geek out about jiu jitsu to you for days on end if you'd let me. 

The quote that I live my entire life by is something my high school Humanities teacher said as a joke:


"Take the leap into the absurdity."


It has guided every decision I've made since he wrote it on the chalkboard.

What else... I like sunflowers! I know a really good spot for pho! I have weirdly specific names for my meticulously curated Spotify playlists!

If I sound like your kind of person, let's connect to figure out how we can work together!

Shadow on Concrete Wall

Danielle Gallo





Washington, D.C. area


  • Project Coordinator at Family Voices

  • Working on my open guard passing for IBJJF No Gi Worlds

BA in Theatre Performance &

BA International Relations through the American University Honors Program.

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