Merritt Janson

Merritt Janson

Merritt Janson is a Brooklyn-based actor working across theater, television and film.

Devoted to developing new work, Merritt has originated roles in Robert Woodruff's Notes From Underground and Autumn Sonata (Yale Rep, La Jolla, Theatre for a New Audience); Your Blues Ain’t Sweet Like Mine, created by Ruben Santiago-Hudson (Two River); Built with Robert O’Hara at 59E59, Jonathan Franzen’s House For Sale directed by Daniel Fish (Duke Theater, Transport Group); Lloyd Suh’s Great Wall Story (Denver Center); The Deception created by Dominique Serrand (La Jolla); and The Onion Cellar with Amanda Palmer and The Dresden Dolls at the American Repertory Theater.

An Off-Broadway regular, Merritt has specialized in classical roles with Theater for a New Audience (Julius Caesar directed by Shana Cooper, Sir Michael Boyd's Tamburlaine the Great, and Measure for Measure directed by Simon Godwin); Red Bull Theater (Coriolanus); The Public (A Midsummer Night’s Dream) and Shakespeare Theatre DC’s Othello. Over five seasons with Shakespeare & Company she played Miranda opposite Olympia Dukakis in The Tempest, Viola in Twelfth Night, Rosalind in As You Like It, Titania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Desdemona in Othello opposite John Douglas Thompson. Other works include the title role in The Wilma’s Eurydice directed by Blanka Zizka, American Repertory Theater’s Britannicus directed by Robert Woodruff and Paradise Lost directed by Daniel Fish.

She can be found regularly onscreen most recently appearing on “Elementary” (CBS), “Billions” (Showtime), “Quantico” (ABC), and “Madam Secretary” (CBS). 

Merritt also plays music. Her style and composition are rooted in early American blues and her primary instruments are finger-style guitar, piano and tenor banjo. She has used this skill in several productions, most recently in TFANA’s Measure for Measure.

Merritt holds an MFA in Acting from ART / MXAT at Harvard University and is currently based in New York City.