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Joe Iconis (he/ him) is a Tony-nominated musical theater writer and performer. His musical Be More Chill has played Broadway, London, and Tokyo and his new show The Untitled Unauthorized Hunter S. Thompson Musical will have its world premiere at La Jolla Playhouse this summer. Joe is the author of Love in Hate Nation, Broadway Bounty Hunter, Bloodsong of Love, The Black Suits, Punk Rock Girl!, and more. He frequently performs at 54 Below and the Laurie Beechman Theater. His albums include Album (Joe Iconis & Family), the original cast recordings of Love in Hate Nation, Broadway Bounty Hunter, Things To Ruin, and Be More Chill (both OCR and OBCR, which have been streamed over 750 million times); Two-Player Game (with George Salazar), and The Joe Iconis Rock & Roll Jamboree all available on Sh-K-Boom/Ghostlight Records. Joe is hugely inspired by Robert Altman, Dolly Parton, The Muppets, and the Family of artists he frequently surrounds himself with.
JOHN SIMPKINS | Director
John Simpkins (he/him) is happy to be a part of the NYSAF summer with writer Joe Iconis. He has collaborated as a Director with Iconis on World Premieres of Love in Hate Nation (Two River Theater), Bloodsong of Love (Ars Nova); The Black Suits (Center Theatre Group, Barrington Stage Company); ReWrite (Urban Stages, Goodspeed Opera House); The Plant That Ate Dirty Socks (Lucille Lortel); and Things to Ruin (co-conceived). The two are currently working on a new project called Family Album. Other World Premieres: Legendale (by Andrea Daly/ Jeff Bienstock) at Fredericia Teater (Demark) and Human Race Theatre, Raging Skillet (by Jacques Lamarre) at Theaterworks Hartford, The Bus (by James Lantz) at 59E59. He has directed regionally at Sacramento Music Circus, Lyric Theatre Oklahoma, North Carolina Theatre, Engeman Theatre, Sharon Playhouse (where he was Artistic Director). A strong supporter of new work, John has recently directed new musicals by artists including Kirsten Childs, Mike Reid/ Sarah Schlesinger, Alexander Sage Oyen/ Lauren Marcus/ James Presson, Josh Salzman/ Ryan Cunningham, Sam Salmond, Matthew McCollum/ Sofya Levitsky-Weitz, Maria Wirries/ Christian Thompson, and Gilbert Bailey. He is Head of Musical Theatre at Penn State University, where he created and curates a New Musicals Initiative. www.john-simpkins.com
LAURA DADAP | Cast
Laura Dadap is overjoyed to share a stage with her Iconis Family once again. A multi hyphenate performance artist, small business owner and new mama, Laura is dedicated to cultivating activism and the arts in collaboration through music and storytelling. Off Broadway: Oratorio for Living Things (Ars Nova), Voca People. Tour: Voca People, and Nickelodeon Presents: Storytime Live! Regional: Bhangin’ It! (La Jolla Playhouse) 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Arkansas Rep), Agent 355 (Chautauqua Theater Company). Proud graduate of Emerson College’s BFA Acting program and a founding member of Macabre Americana, a folk fusion band that sheds light on the dark side of American history. In her spare time, Laura and her husband own and operate Djablo Sauce, the first Filipino hot sauce to be manufactured in the United States that packs a mighty punch! www.lauradadap.com
SETH ELISER | Cast
Seth Eliser is excited to be here at NYSAF! As an actor, Seth was most recently seen in the premiere of The Twelfth Night Show at The Grange Theater, Beautiful NSMT, Ernst in the World Premiere of Punk Rock Girl, and PCLO’s Godspell. Seth has toured the country with The Music Man, The Lightning Thief, and internationally with Disney Cruise Line. Regional credits include multiple productions of ONCE, Buddy Holly Story, Ring of Fire, Hairspray. He can be heard singing, playing drums and guitar for Broadway writers Joe Iconis, Rob Rokicki, and also various university/conservatory programs. @seth_lsr
MORGAN SIOBHAN GREEN | Cast
Morgan Siobhan Green's credits include: Broadway: Be More Chill, National Tours: Hadestown (Original Company, Eurydice), Regional and Off-Broadway: White Girl In Danger (Secondstage, Caroline), Moby Dick (American Repertory Theatre, Cambridge), Between The Lines (Kansas City Repertory Theatre), Folk Wandering (ART NY) Avalanches (Because I'm Me) TV: The Bold Type (Zuri) 44 West Entertainment, Artists and Representatives. Pip and Vernie’s mom. For my Angel. www. Morgansiobhan.com
MOLLY HAGER | Cast
Molly Hager has most recently been seen as Megan White in Michael R. Jackson’s White Girl in Danger at Second Stage! Select credits: original casts of Waitress on Broadway, Heathers: The Musical (New World Stages) and Duncan Sheik’s NY premiere of Whisper House (59E59). Virginia Rider on Five Days At Memorial (AppleTV+).
LAUREN MARCUS | Cast
Lauren Marcus’s credits include Broadway: Be More Chill (Original Cast at the Lyceum Theatre). Select credits: White Girl in Danger (Second Stage/The Vineyard), Sarah Silverman’s The Bedwetter (The Atlantic), Fiddler On The Roof (Lyric Opera of Chicago), Little Shop of Horrors (Pittsburgh Public), The Humans (St. Louis Rep), Company (Barrington Stage), Love in Hate Nation (Two River Theater). Film: tick, tick…BOOM! Lauren is thrilled to be back at New York Stage and Film after developing her original television pilot with their 2022 Filmmakers Workshop. Her new musical Lauren and The Case of The Missing Hair (book/music/lyrics) is a 2022 Relentless Award Semifinalist, and she is currently finishing up her debut album as a singer/songwriter.
ERIC WILLIAM MORRIS | Cast
Eric William Morris’s credits include: Broadway: King Kong, Coram Boy, Mamma Mia! Eric is a frequent Joe Iconis cohort, starring in Be More Chill (Original Cast Recording, Two River Theatre) Things to Ruin (OCR, 2nd Stage) and Bloodsong of Love (Ars Nova). TV/Film Include: “Fleishman is in Trouble”, “I Know What You Did Last Summer”, “Mind Hunter”, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”. On stage he was most recently seen in Michael R. Jackson’s White Girl In Danger (2nd Stage/Vineyard) and Richard Greenberg’s THE PERPLEXED (MTC). His album of original 90’s rock inspired music “Do You Understand” is avail on all platforms. @theericwmorris
JEREMY MORSE | Cast
Jeremy Morse is a dad, loves Philly sports, and is a huge Joe Iconis fan. He lives in Washington Heights with his wife Alex and tiny daughter Clementine, back in NY after touring with Frozen (Weselton). He made his Broadway debut in Waitress and played the role of Ogie in the 1st National Tour. He was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for his portrayal of Lo Cocodrilo in Joe Iconis’s Bloodsong Of Love At Ars Nova, directed by John Simpkins. Select credits include Forum (Hysterium) at the Maltz Jupiter, How To Succeed (Finch) at the Walnut Street and Riverside Theatres, and Into The Woods (Jack) at North Carolina Theatre. TV/Film: “FBI,” “Brooklyn Sound.” Bachelor of Music from NYU Steinhardt, MBA from Wilmington University. www.jeremymorse.net @jeremycmorse
LORINDA LISITZA | Cast
Lorinda Lisitza is from Porcupine Plain, Saskatchewan. In New York she has performed as a member of the Jean Cocteau Repertory Theatre., appeared in several of the York Theatre's "Musicals in Mufti", has been a part of the Town Hall "Broadway" series, and is a member of the Joe Iconis Family as well as the Theater 20/20 Family. She has won three MAC Awards, a Bistro Award, a Nightlife Award, and the Patrick Lee Independent Theater Blogger Award. She appears with symphonies all over North America in concert with Spot-on Entertainment and has appeared on "Who Wants to be a Millionaire." Next up is the Hunter S. Thompson musical at La Jolla Playhouse.
MIKE ROSENGARTEN | Cast
Mike Rosengarten, the true definition of a gentleman, Mike Rosengarten knows how to play the accordion, but chooses not to. Mike was last seen on Broadway as the Associate Music Director as well as Guitar 2 / Keys 2 player for “The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical,” and before that played Guitar 1 for the viral smash hit “Be More Chill.” He recently made his Carnegie Hall debut playing with Jon Batiste on his new work “American Symphony.” He plays regularly with several bands and artists, both live as well as in the studio. You may also recognize him from his recurring TV appearances on “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.” A New York native, he now lives in Manhattan with his wife, daughter, son, dog, and a cat. He is allergic to the cat, but she is family now, so what can you do?
JASON TAM | Cast
JASON TAM was Peter in the hit NBC Live Jesus Christ Superstar. Prior to that he was in the Off-Broadway show KPOP (Lortel Award). Jason’s Broadway credits include Be More Chill (and Off-Bway), IF/THEN, Lysistrata Jones, and the original Paul in the revival of A Chorus Line. Jason’s TV credits include Law & Order: Organized Crime; FBI: Most Wanted, The Blacklist, Do No Harm, Guilty, Hawaii 5-0, One Life to Live, and Beyond the Break, and he was seen in the documentary Every Little Step. Jason holds a BFA from NYU Tisch and serves on the Board of Directors at Keen Company.
JASON SWEETTOOTH WILLIAMS | Cast
Jason SweetTooth Williams is an actor and a writer who was last seen on Broadway in Be More Chill! He has spent nearly two decades collaborating with Joe Iconis, having appeared in such Iconis-penned musicals as Bloodsong of Love (Ars Nova), The Black Suits (SPF- The Public Theater), ReWrite (Urban Stages), Things To Ruin, and many others. He is also featured on Iconis' epic 44-track record, ALBUM. Jason has originated roles in Disney's Freaky Friday (La Jolla Playhouse, Signature Theater), Benny and Joon (The Old Globe), and Crossing Brooklyn (Transport Group). He starred opposite Jackie Hoffman as Prince Dauntless in Transport Group's Off-Broadway revival of Once Upon a Mattress. As a writer, Jason is currently developing the musical In The Holiday Trenches and is a co-book writer (with Iconis and Lance Rubin) of Broadway Bounty Hunter, which premiered Off-Broadway at Greenwich House Theater and starred the great Annie Golden.
LAUREN YEE | Book
Lauren Yee’s (she/her) Cambodian Rock Band, with music by Dengue Fever, premiered at South Coast Rep, subsequent productions at Oregon Shakespeare Festival, La Jolla Playhouse, Victory Gardens, City Theatre, Merrimack Repertory Theatre, Signature Theatre, and Jungle Theatre/Theater Mu, and is currently touring. Her play The Great Leap has been produced at the Denver Center, Steppenwolf, Seattle Repertory, Atlantic Theatre, the Guthrie Theatre, American Conservatory Theatre, Arts Club, Pasadena Playhouse/East West Players, InterAct Theatre, and Asolo Rep. Honors include the Doris Duke Artists Award, Whiting Award, Steinberg/ATCA Award, American Academy of Arts and Letters literature award, Horton Foote Prize, Kesselring Prize, Primus Prize, a Hodder Fellowship at Princeton, and the #1 and #2 plays on the 2017 Kilroys List. She's a Residency 5 playwright at Signature Theatre, New Dramatists members, Ma-Yi Writers’ Lab member, and Playwrights Realm playwright. TV credits: Pachinko (Apple), Soundtrack (Netflix). Upcoming TV credits: Interior Chinatown (Hulu), Billions (Showtime), The Sterling Affairs (FX). She has developed pilots for Apple and Netflix. Current commissions include Arena Stage, Geffen Playhouse, La Jolla Playhouse, Second Stage, South Coast Rep. B.A: Yale. M.F.A: UCSD. laurenyee.com
HEATHER CHRISTIAN | Music & Lyrics
Heather Christian (she/her) is a Lortel, Drama Desk and two time Obie Award winning composer/performer making music centered shows and rituals. She is a 2021 Richard Rodgers Award winner, 2022 Stephen Schwartz Outstanding New Composer awardee and Sundance Institute Time Warner Fellow. Recent composing/performing credits include her own work Oratorio for Living Things (Ars Nova), Animal Wisdom (The Bushwick Starr, now a motion picture made in collaboration with Wooly Mammoth in DC and American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco) I am Sending You the Sacred Face (Theater In Quarantine/ YouTube— Named Vultures #5 Theater Experience of 2020), Prime: A Practical Breviary (Playwrights Horizons Soundstage—named IndieWire’s #1 Podcast Episode of 2020) in addition to being a lead artist on devised works Mission Drift Nat’l Theater London, The World Is Round (BAM). Film composition credits include The Craft: Legacy (Sony Pictures/ Blumhouse 2020) Lemon, (2017 Sundance Film Festival and SXSW) Gregory Go Boom, (Sundance Grand Jury Prize) Adult Swim series Teenage Euthanasia and The Shivering Truth (2021 BMI TV Music Award for Outstanding Score), and all four films in the Criterion Collection’s Restrospective of Janicza Bravo. She was named one of TimeOut NY's Downtown Innovators To Watch and is a 2019 Harold an Mimi Steinberg Trust commissionee. She has released 13 records, teaches vocal-based music composition at NYU, owns and operates her own recording studio in Beacon, NY, and can be seen regularly in concert halls and dive bars as Heather Christian & the Arbornauts. www.heatherchristian.bandcamp.com
LEE SUNDAY EVANS | Director
Lee Sunday Evans (she/her) is a New York-based, two-time Obie award-winning director and choreographer. Lee most recently directed the acclaimed production of Heather Christian’s Oratorio for Living Things (Lucille Lortel Award for Best Director) and was just announced as the director of a Broadway-bound musical adaptation of A Wrinkle in Time. She is developing a TV project for A24, and directed The Coutroom a feature-length film written by Arian Moayed. Notable credits include Dance Nation by Clare Barron (Playwrights Horizons, OBIE and Lortel Awards), The Courtroom (Waterwell; NYTimes Best Theater of 2019 List), Detroit Red by Will Power (ArtsEmerson), Sunday by Jack Thorne (Atlantic Theater Company), In the Green by Grace McLean (LCT3), Miller, Mississippi by Boo Killebrew (Dallas Theater Center, Long Wharf Theater), The Winter's Tale (The Public), Home (BAM), Farmhouse/Whorehouse by Suzanne Bocanegra (BAM), Bull in a China Shop by Bryna Turner (Lincoln Center/LCT3), Caught by Christopher Chen (The Play Company), [Porto] by Kate Benson (WP Theater/The Bushwick Starr), A Beautiful Day in November on the Banks of the Greatest of The Great Lakes by Kate Benson (OBIE Award; WP Theater, New Georges). Lee’s work has been also presented and developed at Baryshnikov Arts Center, Sundance Theater Lab, BAX, CATCH, LMCC, Robert Wilson’s Watermill Center, and Juilliard among others. She is the Artistic Director of Waterwell.
LEANNE ANTONIO | Cast (Ensemble)
Leanne Antonio is a New York based Actress, Broadway Credit: THE LION KING; Off-Broadway credit: Black No More (Choreo: Bill T. Jones, music: Black Thought); TV: "The Equalizer" (Nia, Ep.7 dir: Christine Moore); Some Other Credits Include: Murder on the Orient Express (Mary Debenham, Paper Mill Playhouse), Muriel’s Wedding (Rhonda, dir: Simon Phillips, writer: PJ Hogan), Lempicka (La Jolla Playhouse, dir: Rachel Chavkin, Choreo: Raja Feather Kelly), Disaster (Levora, starring/writer: Seth Rudetsky, dir./writer: Jack Plotnick). She would like to thank her awesome team at HCKR and Stagecoach management, God, and her beautiful support system of friends and family. And last but not least, GO BLUE!
KIM BLANCK | Cast (Ensemble)
Kim Blanck's New York and regional credits include 6 world premieres: Octet (Signature Theatre, winner of the Drama Desk Ensemble Award), The Best We Could (MTC), Alice by Heart (MCC), The Tattooed Lady (Philadelphia Theatre Company), Moby-Dick (A.R.T.), and Folk Wandering (Pipeline). TV: “East New York” (CBS), “New Amsterdam” (NBC), “WeCrashed” (Apple TV+), “Dr. Death” (Peacock). Film: Call Jane, Friday Afternoon, Women Who Kill. BFA, NYU Tisch; MFA, UC San Diego. www.kimblanck.com
Jeffrey Cornelius | Cast (Calvin O'Keefe)
Jeffrey Cornelius is ecstatic to join this company! Most recently, Evan Alternate: Dear Evan Hansen. Other favorite projects include LINK: Class 4, Sonnets and Soul, and Homeschool Musical: Class of 2020 on HBOMax. CCM MT24! Thank you to everybody at DGRW, and every single family member and teacher that has helped me get here! (Especially Mom, Dad, The Grands and Daniel) It takes a village!
Major Curda | Cast (Ensemble)
Major Curda is a Korean-American multi-disciplinary storytelling artist who was last seen as Romeo in NAATCO's off-broadway production of Romeo & Juliet; prior to which Major could be seen opposite South Korea’s recording superstar Luna in the Broadway musical KPOP! As an artist with a love for reifying classic stories, Major is thrilled and truly humbled to be working with such a phenomenal cast & creative team on A Wrinkle in Time. Major can be found recurring on the CW smash hit series RIVERDALE as “Dilton Doiley” and on Netflix’s ATYPICAL as “Arlo”. In addition to other Broadway, touring, and regional theatre credits, Major has recurred on multiple Nickelodeon shows and web-series, as well as hosted an AwesomenessTV game show; while on the voiceover side, they are the host voice of multiple Xbox One Disney video games. Major is a recent graduate of the Carnegie Mellon School of Drama and a member of One Year Lease Theatre Company. @Majorly.MC Website: MajorCurda.art
ASHLEY PÉREZ FLANAGAN | Cast (Ensemble)
Broadway: Freestyle Love Supreme; Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812. Off-Broadway: The Beautiful Lady (La Mama); Morning//Mourning (HERE); Oratorio For Living Things (Ars Nova, Lortel Award); Freestyle Love Supreme (Ars Nova); In The Green (LCT3, Lortel Award nomination); The Lucky Ones (Ars Nova); Hadestown (NYTW); In Love With Jobim (York Theatre). Regional: Cowboy Bob (Alley Theatre); The Tattooed Lady (Philadelphia Theatre Company), Life After (Goodman Theatre), A Crossing (Barrington Stage Company), Moby-Dick (A.R.T.), The Great Comet of 1812 (A.R.T.), Prometheus Bound (A.R.T.), Evita, West Side Story, The Sound of Music. Concerts: Carnegie Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Joe’s Pub, 54 Below. Film: The Kitchen.
ROBI HAGER | Cast (Ensemble)
Robi Hager is a Mexican-American performer and musical theatre composer. He has appeared on Broadway with Spring Awakening, How To Succeed…, Bye Bye Birdie, and Doctor Zhivago. Regional: Ragtime, Parade, Next to Normal, Bonnie & Clyde, among others. As a composer, his work has been showcased and developed at The Eugene O’Neill Center, NAMT and Rhinebeck Writers Retreat. For more info visit robihager.com. @robihager
KATRINA LENK | Cast (Mrs. Whatsit)
Katrina Lenk is currently filming a major recurring role in the upcoming limited series Apples Never Fall on Peacock. She previously appeared as a recurring guest star in the final season of Netflix’s Ozark. She starred as Bobbie in the revival of Stephen Sondheim’s Company, the first woman to play the role on Broadway. She previously starred as Dina in The Band’s Visit, for which she earned Tony, Grammy, and Lucille Lortel Awards. She also received nominations from OCC, Chita Rivera Awards, Drama League, Theatre World Award’s Dorothy Loudon Award, and a Clarence Derwent Award (Breakout Female of the Year). Other Broadway credits: Pulitzer Prize winning Indecent (OCC nomination), Once, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, The Miracle Worker. Additional theater credits: Indecent (Vineyard, La Jolla Playhouse, Yale Rep), iWitness (Mark Taper Forum), Lost Land (Steppenwolf), Lovelace: A Rock Opera (L.A./Edinburgh). Other TV credits: “Little Voice,” “Tommy” “The Village,” “The Good Fight,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” “Elementary,” “The Blacklist.”
DIEGO LUCANO | Cast (Charles Wallace Murry)
Diego Lucano and his beautiful hair have performed in various professional stage productions, such as School of Rock (Broadway), Trevor (Off Broadway and Disney+), Sing Street (Huntington Theatre Co.), and recently Let The Right One In (Berkeley Rep) as well as on film in Marry Me (2022). He also created an animated short film, Marks, which went on to win numerous awards in multiple film festivals. IG: @diego_lucano
KENITA R. MILLER | Cast (Mrs. Who)
Kenita R. Miller’s credits include: B'way: For Colored Girls (Lady In Red/Drama Desk, Drama League, & Tony Nom.), Come From Away (Hannah), Once On This Island (Mama Euralie/ Grammy Nom.), The Color Purple (Celie), Xanadu (Erato/Kira understudy) Off Broadway: Bubbly Black Girl Sheds Her Chameleon Skin (Granny, Encores!), Bella: an American Tall Tale (Miss Cabbagestalk/Mama), Merrily We Roll Along (Encores!), Wild Party (Encores!), Langston In Harlem (Zora Neale Hurston-Drama Desk Nom./Audelco Award), Working (Drama Desk Award), Avenue Q Regional: Parade (Minnie McKnight, Angela/2014 Barrymore Award Outstanding Featured Actress), Once On This Island (Timoune/Mama Euralie), Ragtime (Sarah) Film/TV: Tick Tick Boom, Sesame Street, Bull, Hostages, Blacklist.
MIA PAK | Cast (Meg Murry)
Mia Pak (she/her) is an actor, singer, and songwriter based in Brooklyn, New York. Recent credits include Suffs (The Public Theater), In The Green (Lincoln Center Theater), and Your Own Personal Exegesis (Lincoln Center Theater). Her first time at NYSAF, she is overjoyed to be sharing this timeless piece with such an inspiring group of artists.
MARTÍN SOLÁ | Cast (Father/Dr. Murry)
Martín Solá just completed a run as Juan Perón in Evita at The REV Theater; and prior to that he was seen in the premiere of Suzan-Lori Parks’ Plays for the Plague Year at The Public Theater in NYC. Broadway: On Your Feet, The King and I, Coram Boy, and Baz Luhrmann’s La Bohème. Additional NY Credits: New York Pops at Carnegie Hall, New York City Opera, City Center Encores, The Roundabout Theater Company, and more. TV: Father Russo in Archive 81 (Netflix), FBI (CBS), and Law and Order SVU (NBC). Martín wrote, directed and starred in his first short film, May I Take it Your Plate which garnered “Best Film” and “Best Actor” awards at both the International Puerto Rican Heritage and the New York City Downtown Film Festivals. He also teaches singing at Yale University in New Haven and has had a private voice and acting studio in NYC for many years. For more info visit www.martinsola.com.
PHILLIP TARATULA | Cast (Ensemble)
Phillip Taratula’s credits include: Broadway: The Skin of Our Teeth (LCT). National tour: What the Constitution Means to Me. Off-B'way: Becomes a Woman (Mint Theater Co); Riddle of the Trilobites (New Victory); Taylor Mac's The Lily's Revenge (HERE); Empire Travel Agency (Woodshed Collective). Regional: Two River, Huntington, La Mirada, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Gulfshore Playhouse, Tuacahn, Humana Festival, Ordway, O'Neill Conference, more. Opera: Die Fledermaus (Metropolitan Opera); The Solder's Tale (Castleton Festival). Film/TV: Almost Love; "And Just Like That" (HBO Max); "Dr. Death" (NBC/Peacock); "For Life" (NBC); "High Maintenance" (HBO); "FBI" (CBS). BFA, Boston University School of Theatre.
KATIE THOMPSON | Cast (Mrs. Which)
Katie Thompson was last seen on Broadway as Aunt Eller in Daniel Fish’s “Oklahoma”, the world premiere of “Renascence” by Carmel Dean and Dick Scanlan, and “R.R.R.E.D. a Secret Musical”, which she composed. Other roles include: Vashti in “Giant” by Michael John LaChiusa, The Witch in the world premiere of “Big Fish" by Andrew Lippa, and Nora Hildebrandt in Philadelphia Theater Company’s “The Tattooed Lady” by Max Vernon. She has guest starred on CBS’s “Blacklist”, HBO’s “High Maintenance”, and NBC’s “30 Rock”. Her musical theater cast albums include: “Giant”, “Renascence”, “R.R.R.E.D. a Secret Musical”, “The Mad Ones”, “Polkadots: The Cool Kid Musical”, and “Dreamland, Area 51”. In addition to her musical theater discography Katie’s solo albums have been featured on “So You Think You Can Dance” and can be found on iTunes. Instagram/Twitter handle: katiethompsonkt
ADRIENNE WALKER | Cast (Mother/Dr. Murry)
Adrienne Walker, proud graduate of Spelman College, is a stage a tv/film actor based in New York. She made her Broadway debut as Nala in Disney’s The Lion King and also starred as Hattie in the Broadway revival of Kiss Me Kate. TV credits; "Power Book IV: Force," "Law & Order: Organized Crime," and "FBI." Regional theatre credits; Porgy and Bess, Rent, Hair, Dreamgirls, Agamemnon, Iphigenia in Aulis and The Color Purple. Adrienne is the founder of 32 Bar Cut – an advice platform for actors and also sells handmade organic skincare on Etsy @tembospa. www.adriennemwalker.com
JAYKE WORKMAN | Cast (Ensemble)
Jayke Workman is a non-binary performer based in New York City. A graduate of The Hartt School, Jayke holds a BFA in Musical Theater, and is originally from the midwest. Jayke has had the pleasure of appearing in regional productions across the country, and has also played the role of Mary Sunshine in Chicago The Musical on the National Tour, and most recently on Broadway. When not onstage, Jayke has worked in many facets of the arts, including in the wig department for Saturday Night Live. Listen to Jayke's podcast, 'Oh My Pod U Guys' on the Broadway Podcast Network anywhere you listen to podcasts. Much love to my wonderful family, friends, and The Roster Agency. @jaykeworkman
EMILY XU HALL | Cast (Ensemble)
Emily Xu Hall 黃福霖 is an actor, composer, lyricist, and playwright. Off-Broadway: Shaina Taub’s As You Like It (Jaques Standby), Public Theater Shakespeare in the Park. Regional: Nell Gwynn (Lady Castlemaine/Louise), Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Snow Queen (Snow Queen), Triad Stage. MFA, NYU Graduate Acting. As composer, lyricist and playwright, she was awarded the American Theatre Wing Jonathan Larson Award for her solo writing, the Dramatists Guild Stephen Schwartz Composer Award, and was the inaugural winner of the “Go Write A Musical” Lilly Award for Women in Theatre. Off-Broadway as composer-lyricist: Nomad Motel at the Atlantic Theatre Company. Development: Cherry Orchard Musical, Mei-do Film: LYLE, LYLE, CROCODILE (2022), co-wrote with Pasek & Paul for live action movie musical starring Shawn Mendes, Javier Bardem and Constance Wu. emilyxuhall.com
JASON KAISER | Production Stage Manager
Jason Kaiser: Monsoon Wedding the Musical (St. Ann's); Only An Octave Apart (St. Ann's, NY Phil.); Kiki and Herb SLEIGH (BAM); Social! and Party in the Bardo (both at Park Avenue Armory); the Tony Award-winning revival of Oklahoma! (Broadway, St. Ann’s); A 24-Decade History of Popular Music with Taylor Mac (St. Ann’s, tour); Available Light with Lucinda Childs Dance Company; the opera premieres of Book of Mountains and Seas, Acquanetta, The Source, anatomy theater, and love fail; the Olivier Award-winning revival of Einstein on the Beach (BAM, tour); three world-premiere plays by Athol Fugard; two European tours of Jesus Christ Superstar directed and choreographed by Baayork Lee.
JO FERNANDEZ | Assistant Stage Manager
Jo Fernandez (he/they) Previously at NYS&F: Annie Salem. They are the Festival Stage Manager at Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, working on Henry V and Penelope. Broadway: The Ferryman, Head Over Heels. Select New York: Oratorio for Living Things (Ars Nova); The Appointment (Lightning Rod Special); Wolf Play, soft, Charm (MCC); Only An Octave Apart (St. Ann's Warehouse); The Underlying Chris (Second Stage), Public Works' Hercules, Julius Caesar, The Gabriels Trilogy (The Public); If Pretty Hurts Ugly Must Be…, Men On Boats, The Christians, Bootycandy (Playwrights Horizons); Continuity, India Pale Ale (MTC). Opera and Concerts: The Mother of Us All (Juilliard, The Met Museum, & the NY Philharmonic), Of Thee I Sing (Carnegie Hall), and the White Light Festival for Lincoln Center. Regional productions, workshops, and readings for Berkeley Rep, The Old Globe, and Shakespeare Theatre Company. Many thanks to the NYS&F staff & crew, the cast, and especially Jason.
BEN MOSS | Musical Director
Ben Moss (he/him) is an award-winning music director, performer, songwriter, and orchestrator. He performed in, co-orchestrated, and music directed Heather Christian’s acclaimed Oratorio for Living Things at Ars Nova (Obie Award, Lucille Lortel Award). Broadway conducting credits include Head Over Heels and Amélie. Other credits: Azul (Eugene O’Neill Theater Center), Gavin Creel’s Walk On Through (O’Neill), Heather Christian’s PRIME (Playwright’s Horizons “Soundstage”), The Hello Girls (Prospect Theater), Arlington (Vineyard Theatre), After Anatevka (Audible), Chasing The Song (La Jolla Playhouse), America is Hard to See (Life Jacket, Edinburgh), Spring Awakening (1st National Tour), Ben Moss & Friends (The Duplex), The Bongo Hour with Peter Smith & Sandy Honig (The Slipper Room), and appearances at Lincoln Center and the Kennedy Center. He is the composer of the new musical Don’t Call Me John! and the music director of the Broadway Sings concert series. On all platforms @benkmoss and benkmoss.com
EMILY WHITAKER | Associate Music Director
Emily Whitaker is a music director, conductor, and pianist from upstate New York. She recently served as the music supervisor for the New York premiere of Monsoon Wedding at St. Ann’s Warehouse. She also currently subs as a conductor and keyboard player at &Juliet. Other recent credits include the world premiere of Monsoon Wedding at the 2022 World Cup in Doha, Qatar (music director), Suffs (associate music director), the Mean Girls National Tour (music director), Trading Places at the Alliance Theatre (associate music director), The Visitor at the Public Theater (associate music director), Merrily We Roll Along with Fiasco Theater at Roundabout (conductor/pianist/associate music director), The Band's Visit on Broadway and with Atlantic Theater Company, Into the Woods at Princeton University, and The Hello Girls with Prospect Theater Company. Emily has also been a proud teaching artist at Princeton and McCarter Theater Center. B.A. Princeton University; M.A. in Musicology: Columbia University.
NICK KASSOY | Music Assistant
Nick Kassoy (they/he) is a queer theatre creator, actor, music director, copyist, composer, and designer based in New York. A recent graduate of University of Southern California’s School of Dramatic Arts, they have served as music assistant for the world premiere production of A Transparent Musical (Mark Taper Forum), as well as developmental readings of Dr. Silver (South Coast Repertory) and Harold & Lillian (South Coast Repertory). Notable music work at USC included Ghost Quartet (Music Director/Assistant Director), Next to Normal (Music Director), and Eurydice (Composer). Nick is thrilled to be back at NYSAF in a new capacity, having been a part of the 2019 summer season as a lighting intern. @nkassoy
LAURENCE FISHBURNE | Writer & Performer
Laurence Fishburne (he/ him) has achieved an impressive body of work as an actor, producer and director. Fishburne’s versatile acting has won him awards in theatre, film and television. In 1992, Fishburne won a Tony Award for his portrayal of Sterling Johnson in August Wilson’s Two Trains Running. He won his first Emmy Award in 1993 for “The Box” episode of Tribeca, and his second for his one-man show, Thurgood, in 1997. In 1993, Laurence also received a Best Actor Oscar nomination for the Tina Turner biopic, What’s Love Got to Do with It. His most recent Emmy win was for his role in Quibi’s #FreeRayshawn.
Laurence may be best known for his role as Morpheus in the Wachowksi siblings’ blockbuster The Matrix trilogy, but his many film credits include: Academy Award nominee John Singleton’s Boyz ‘n the Hood, Richard T. Heffron’s telefilm A Rumor of War, Steven Spielberg’s The Color Purple, Steven Zaillian’s Searching for Bobby Fischer, Mr. Singleton’s Higher Learning, Clint Eastwood’s Mystic River and cult classics, Deep Cover and King of New York.
LEONARD FOGLIA | Director
Leonard Foglia is a theater and opera director as well as librettist. Broadway Productions: Master Class, Wait Until Dark, Thurgood (filmed for HBO), The People in the Picture, On Golden Pond, The Gin Game. Off-Broadway: Let Me Down Easy (filmed for PBS), Notes From The Field (filmed for HBO), One Touch of Venus, The Stendhal Syndrome, If Memory Serves, About Alice. He directed the world premieres of the operas of Everest, Moby Dick (filmed for PBS), It’s a Wonderful Life, Cold Mountain, The End of the Affair, Three Decembers, Stonewall, A Coffin in Egypt (also librettist), Cruzar la Cara de la Luna/To Cross the Face of the Moon (also librettist), El Pasado Nunca Se Termina/The Past Is Never Finished (also librettist), El Milagro del Recuerdo/The Miracle of Remembering (also librettist). His production of Dead Man Walking has been seen across the US and Europe. The three ‘mariachi operas’ for which he wrote the librettos have been staged on three continents and are continually produced in the U.S.
SAMARA COHEN (PRINCESS LOCKEROOO) |
Co-Creator & Choreographer
Princess Lockerooo (she/her) is a visionary in the dance industry, known for her exceptional work as a producer, public speaker, event curator, director, and choreographer. With a reputation for excellence and numerous accolades, including a Bessie award for Breakout Choreographer and a nomination for Sustained Achievement as a fellow of the RSA, Princess is a highly regarded artist and leader in the dance world. In 2022, she founded The Fabulous Waack Dancers, a dance company, and the Waack dancer training program, showcasing her commitment to preserving the legacy of Waacking. Through her passion and expertise, she has brought the art of waacking to communities around the world, promoting self-love, building communities, and inspiring confidence. Princess is dedicated to preserving the history of waacking and conducted the interview for the oral history of Choreographer and Waacking Pioneer Bill Goodson for the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.
Lockerooo has been featured on leading television platforms such as So You Think You Can Dance? and America's Got Talent, and has collaborated with renowned pop artists such as Madonna, Jody Watley, Icona Pop, Bob The Dragqueen, Pangina Heals, and more. Her productions have been showcased at world-renowned venues including Lincoln Center, The Guggenheim Museum, NYBG, Summerstage, Women's Entrepreneurship Day, HATCH, Original Thinkers, ASAP NextGen, and the United Nations.
Her impact on the dance world has earned her recognition from prestigious press outlets, including the New York Times, which featured her on the cover of the Sunday Times Metro section for her pioneering work in the resurgence of Waacking. She has also been featured in Brut, Dance Magazine, Dance Teacher, The Medium, Document Journal, and Get Out Magazine. Princess is not only an artist but also a philanthropist and activist for LGBTQ rights, producing a night of entertainment for Global Ambassadors at the United Nations event F4D, and working with and raising funds for organizations such as Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, The Omomuki Foundation, The Center, GMHC, and NYC Pride.
Lockerooo continues to push the boundaries of her art and industry through her current role as co-director of an untitled feature film with an Academy Award-winning team, and as writer and director of a new musical, Paradise Ballroom, supported by the Musical Theater Factory. She is an Artist in Residence with Guggenheim Works & Process and will be producing events with The New York Public Library for The Performing Arts and Lincoln Center in the summer of 2023.
HAROLD O'NEAL | Co-Creator, Composer & Music Director
Harold O'Neal (he/him) is a versatile musician, producer, pianist, composer, public speaker, and storyteller, renowned for his association with the legacy of jazz pianists. He has worked with a diverse range of artists across various musical genres, including Jay Z, Damien Rice, Bob Geldof, and Lupe Fiasco. His work has garnered widespread recognition in top media outlets such as NPR, Forbes, The Hollywood Reporter, and Fortune Magazine. Recently, O'Neal brought his expertise to Pixar's Academy Award-winning film, Soul, as a creative expert. He has also made a name for himself as a sought-after director and producer, working on high-profile events like Electric Burma with U2, the CNN All Star Tribute, and The Albie Awards with The Clooney Foundation. O'Neal's captivating presentations have been delivered to a diverse range of innovation leaders, including Salesforce, TIME, Google, McKinsey & Company, United Nations Ambassadors, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and The World Economic Forum at Davos. Currently, O'Neal is working on a range of exciting projects, including producing and scoring a feature-length film with an Academy Award-winning director. With his impressive track record, O'Neal continues to make waves in the entertainment industry and beyond, inspiring audiences with his passion for creativity and storytelling.
COLETTE ROBERT | Director
Colette Robert is a director and playwright from Los Angeles, currently based in New York. Most recently, she wrote and directed The Harriet Holland Social Club Presents The 84th Annual Star-Burst Cotillion In The Grand Ballroom Of The Renaissance Hotel (The Movement Theatre Company/New Georges.) Other New York directing credits include: the first New York revival of Lynn Nottage’s Crumbs From The Table Of Joy (Keen Company), and the world premieres of Stew (Page 73, Pulitzer Prize Finalist) and Behind The Sheet (Ensemble Studio Theatre). Regional credits include The Wanderers (City Theatre Company), Weathering (Penumbra Theatre), Egress (Salt Lake Acting Company), and Celebrating The Black Radical Imagination: Nine Solo Plays (Williamstown Theatre Festival). She was the Associate Director for the Broadway revival of Caroline, Or Change. Colette is a member of Ensemble Studio Theatre, a New Georges affiliated artist, and an adjunct lecturer at NYU. M.A., RADA and King’s College, London. B.A., Yale University. Member, SDC. SDCF Denham Fellow. https://www.coletterobert.com/
ERNEST ALLEN | (Teddy)
Ernest Allen (They/Them) is a New York born and raised theater artist. Having graduated from Pace University’s Class of 2022, they are excited to continue their journey into the theater world. They are nothing less than honored to be part of this show and have gratitude for all those involved. Keep in touch! @TheErnestAllen or TheErnestAllen.com
LEANNE ANTONIO | (Harp)
Leanne Antonio is a New York based Actress, Broadway Credit: THE LION KING; Off-Broadway credit: Black No More (Choreo: Bill T. Jones, music: Black Thought); TV: The Equalizer (Nia, Ep.7 dir: Christine Moore); Some Other Credits Include: Murder on the Orient Express (Mary Debenham, Paper Mill Playhouse), Muriel’s Wedding (Rhonda, dir: Simon Phillips, writer: PJ Hogan), Lempicka (La Jolla Playhouse, dir: Rachel Chavkin, Choreo: Raja Feather Kelly), Disaster (Levora, starring/writer: Seth Rudetsky, dir./writer: Jack Plotnick). She would like to thank her awesome team at HCKR and Stagecoach management, God, and her beautiful support system of friends and family. And last but not least, GO BLUE!
WILLIAM BAILEY (JADA VALENCIAGA) | Cast (Franceska)
William Bailey’s (He/She/They) credits include: National tour: How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Madison Square Garden). Off Broadway: Hair (Roundabout Theater). TV/film credits: Shade: Queens of NYC, “Wig” (HBO), Nickelodeon commercial (choreographer and dancer), “Dragged,” Party of one (Afro Daisiac), Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen. As a choreographer, he has choreographed for multiple recording artists and has also choreographed shows such as CATS, Chicago, and a new work called Sirens Den: a Rock Musical. Dance captain credits include: Fame, Once on this Island, and the world premiere of a new musical called Rock ‘n’ roll Man (starring Alan Campbell and George Wendt) in which he served as dance captain as well as playing the young crooner Frankie Lymon. You can currently catch William doing the Broadway drag revue “Curtains Up!” as his drag persona Jada Valenciaga on Tuesdays at The Manhattan Monster Bar 9-11PM! IG: @jadavalenciaga
TYRONE BEVANS | Cast (Lenny)
Tyrone Bevans is dancer, and sound/visual artist based in Brooklyn, NY. Raised in the Bronx he received his early training from Martha Graham school of Contemporary Dance and the Mark Morris Dance Center. He is currently dancing for Princess Lockeroo’s Fabulous Waack Dancers and Joya Powell’s Movement of the people. In the past Tyrone has performed and collaborated with artists such as Christal Brown, Chafin Seymour, J.Bouey, Janeill Cooper, Maya Orchin, FunkanometryNY, and Karla Garcia. As a mover Tyrone investigates space, risk, and play with one’s physical vernacular in order to access personal freedom.
TYTUS LARUE JAMES GIBSON- JACKSON | Cast (Gino/Narrator)
Tytus Larue James Gibson-Jackson has a connection to performance that’s undeniable–from almost being born on the stage to attending three different Art High Schools, Tytus has always been in alignment with his purpose of entertaining the world! Moving to New York pre-pandemic with Broadway goals in mind, Tytus found an agent in Duncan Stewart; half of Stewart and Whitley Casting Agency. Shortly thereafter Broadway shows and theaters shut down due to the Covid-19 CoronaVirus. Determined not to be held back by whatever New York or the world threw his way and desperate to still pursue his art in any way, Tytus began to explore and experiment with music producing on Logic Pro. Not only a singer, dancer, actor, model, and songwriter; now a producer with an EP project coming out. Recently, Tytus Larue has become a spokesmodel for the second year in a row with the campaign HIV Stops With Me, spreading education and awareness about living a healthy and prosperous life with HIV. The silver screen is one of Tytus’s dreams, but the ultimate goal is still the Great White Way; Broadway!
ISAIAH JOHNSON | Cast (Maverick)
Isaiah Johnson has appeared on and off Broadway, working with Al Pacino and Daniel Sullivan in The Merchant of Venice, Kevin Spacey and Sam Mendes in Richard III, Kelli O'Hara and Michael Greif in Far From Heaven, Roger Rees and Alex Timbers in Peter and the Starcatcher, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Thomas Kail in Hamilton (lab production, 1st nat'l & Puerto Rico Tours), John Doyle’s Tony, Emmy and Grammy award winning reimagining of “Color Purple”. Among working along side other notable artists and directors, he has starred in “Person of Interest" (CBS), "The Knick" (Cinemax), “Nancy Drew”, “All Rise” (CBS), the Peabody Award Winning Drama “David Makes Man” (HBO MAX) and the new series “Florida Man” starring Édgar Ramirez (Netflix).
JADE JONES | Cast (Harp)
Jade Jones (They/Them) is a New York based Actor/Rapper who was recently seen as Belle in Olney Theatre’s internationally-acclaimed production of “Disney’s Beauty and The Beast”, and as Mary in the recent Off-Broadway revival of “Vanities” at the York Theatre Company. They were spotlighted on ABC 20/20’s 25th anniversary Cinderella reunion special alongside Billy Porter and Todrick Hall. Jade has been featured in Playbill, MSNBC, and People magazine. Jade is represented by KMR Talent, and managed by Rochel Saks. @LittyOfficial
NICOLE KYOUNG-MI LAMBERT | Cast (Harp)
Nicole Kyoung-Mi Lambert (she/her) is happy to be back at Six. Theater: SIX (OBC Broadway, C.S.T, A.R.T., Citadel, Ordway, ), Little Shop of Horrors, In the Heights, Memphis, Rent, Seussical, Godspell. TV: Nurse Nell in “Night Sky” (Amazon). Education: Roosevelt University, music education BFA. Big love to her family, Jabowen, friends, DDO Chicago, and the entire Six Team. Special thanks to mom and dad for doing so much so we kids could dream so big! www.nicoleklambert.com
JOHN-MICHAEL LYLES | Cast (Andy)
John-Michael Lyles is a NYC-based, guitar-wielding, multi-hyphenate creative who’s excited to be making his NYSAF debut! Broadway: A Strange Loop (The Lyceum). Off-Broadway: Sweeney Todd (Barrow), This Ain't No Disco (Atlantic), The Flick (Barrow), Brooklynite (Vineyard), Love Life, Big River & 1776 (Encores!). Regional: Bliss (5th Ave), The Art of Falling (Second City), Choir Boy (Guthrie). TV: "The Other Two", "Chicago PD", “NCIS: New Orleans”. Film: Blind. Writing: Shoot For The Moon, additional music for We’re Gonna Die (Second Stage), Vivace Award & Obie Winner. For Ashley Daché Lyles. @johnmichael_lyles
PHILLIP JOHNSON RICHARDSON | Cast (Benji)
Phillip Johnson Richardson (Benji) has theatre credits that include: GODDESS, Berkeley Rep: HAMILTON, Chicago; NEWSIES, ALL SHOOK UP, JCSS, AIDA, THE MUSIC MAN, MUNY Theatre. FILM: Sharper (Apple+) ; TV: THE LAST O.G,. LITTLE VOICE, CHICAGO PD, PROVEN INNOCENT, THE OTHER TWO. @philsgoodmusic BFA Cincinnati Conservatory of Music
ALYSSA K. HOWARD | Production Stage Manager
Alyssa K. Howard's recent credits include: The Refocus Project (Roundabout Theatre), Lady M (Heartbeat Opera), Public Obscenities (Soho Rep), The Far Country (Atlantic Theater Company), Black Lodge (Beth Morrison Projects), Once Upon A (korean) Time (Ma-Yi Theater), Golden Shield (MTC), Wolf Play (Soho Rep), Nollywood Dreams (MCC), King Lear (Northern Stage), for colored girls… (Public Theater), If Pretty Hurts... (Playwrights Horizons), Good Grief (Vineyard Theatre), Henry VI (NAATCO), Teenage Dick (Ma-Yi Theater), Word Sound Power (BAM), The Echo Drift (Prototype), Glass Guignol (Mabou Mines). Other: Page73, National Sawdust, Berkshire Theatre Group, Playwrights Realm, Noor Theatre, Bushwick Starr, 3LD, Mannes Opera, Juilliard School of Vocal Arts, Connecticut Repertory Theatre, Yale Repertory Theatre, McCarter Theatre, Orlando Shakespeare Theater. MFA: Yale School of Drama. BA: Williams College. ig@shiningatthetop
NYGEL D. ROBINSON | Music Director
Nygel D. Robinson is an Artist based in Chicago, IL. Select music directing credits include: Lady Day (Mercury Theatre), The Amen Corner (Shakespeare Theatre Company), Rose’s War (The Rave Theatre Festival). Nygel is also the co-creator of the new live looped musical Mexodus which started being developed through New York Stage and Film in early 2020. Nygel’s very excited to work with this incredible team and to be back at NYSAF!
JESSE-RAY LEICH | Music Assistant
Jesse-Ray Leich's (he/him) Credits include: Broadway: Mr. Saturday Night, KPOP, & Juliet (sub). Off-Broadway: Titanique (sub). Tours: Motown the Musical, Something Rotten!, Summer: The Donna Summer Musical. Jesse-Ray received his BM from the University of Rhode Island. On Socials: @jesserayleich
JASON KIM | Writer
Jason Kim is a multiple Emmy nominated screenwriter, playwright, and producer. He received a Primetime Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Comedy Series for Barry in 2022 and 2019, and won the Writers Guild Award for Best Comedy Series for Barry in 2020. In addition to writing on HBO’s Girls, he was a consulting producer for HBO’s Divorce and the Netflix series Love. He is currently in an overall television deal with 20th and Onyx Studios at Disney. In film, he is writing the spinoff to CRAZY RICH ASIANS and adapted the true crime book THE FLAWLESS for Fox Searchlight Pictures. Along with Stacey Sher, he is producing an adaptation of the New York Times best seller CRYING IN H MART by Michelle Zauner for Orion. In theater, his musical KPOP opened on Broadway at Circle in the Square in Fall 2022. The 2017 off-Broadway production of KPOP won the Richard Rogers Award, the Off-Broadway Alliance Award, and Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Musical. MFA in Playwriting. Acclaimed Beyonce historian.
DANNY SHARRON | Director
Danny Sharron (he/him) is a theater director with a focus on developing new plays and musicals. Dedicated to elevating the stories of the LGBTQ+ community, he is currently collaborating with Ryan J. Haddad, Jason Kim, Ricardo Perez González, and Ben Diskant, among others. Danny is committed to leading processes with a mix of empathy, clarity, rigor, and kindness, and brings the full scope of his identity (gay, Jewish, Middle Eastern, husband, father) into everything he creates. For five years, Danny was the Senior Associate Director on Dear Evan Hansen (Tony Award for Best Musical), overseeing four companies: Broadway, West End, Toronto, and the U.S. National Tour. Danny has developed and directed work with The Public Theater, New York Theatre Workshop, Roundabout Theatre Company, Manhattan Theatre Club, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Ars Nova, LAByrinth Theater Company, Primary Stages, Ma-Yi, and The Lark. He was most recently a 2021-2022 Next Stage Directing Resident with The Drama League. He is also a recipient of New York Theatre Workshop's 2050 Fellowship, Williamstown's Bill Foeller Fellowship, The Drama League's New York Fellowship, and is an alumnus of the Ars Nova Director's Troupe. NYC-based. BA/BS University of Florida. Proud member of SDC. www.dannysharron.com
MOLLY GRIGGS | Cast (Ella/Maid)
Molly Griggs will co-star in the upcoming Netflix series “The Residence”. Other TV credits: “Dr. Death” (Peacock), “Succession” (HBO), “Servant” (Apple+), “The Good Doctor” (ABC), “New Amsterdam” (NBC), “Prodigal Son” (FOX), “Instinct” (CBS), “FBI” (NBC), “Bull” (CBS), “Mindhunter” (Netflix). Broadway: Hello, Dolly!. Off-Broadway: Linda (Manhattan Theatre Company), Nomad Motel (Atlantic Theater Company), The Ultimate Beauty Bible (Page 73). Education: Carnegie Mellon University.
GREG KELLER | Cast (Suit 1/Captain Minks)
Greg Keller has originated roles in plays by Suzan-Lori Parks, Stephen Adly Guirgis, Clare Barron, Ayad Akhtar, Sarah Ruhl, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Amy Herzog, Richard Greenberg, Julia Cho, Moises Kauffman, Theresa Rebeck, Mara Nelson-Greenberg, Jordan Harrison, Jenny Schwartz, Daniel Goldfarb, Sheila Callaghan, Melissa Ross, Zayd Dohrn, David Grimm, Rachel Bonds and Robert O’Hara. Acting MFA: NYU. Lila Acheson Wallace Playwriting Fellow at The Juilliard School (two-time recipient of Lecomte Du Nouy prize). His play Dutch Masters has been performed in Chicago (2 Jeff awards), Los Angeles (2 Ovation awards), and New York, where it was nominated for Best New Play by the Off Broadway Theater Alliance.
SUE JEAN KIM | Cast (Suit 2/Brinna)
Sue Jean Kim has recently appeared in: You Hurt My Feelings, Hide and Seek, and I Know This Much Is True. Selected Off-Broadway credits include: Office Hour (Public Theater), Aubergine, Assistance, Drunken City, and BFE (all at Playwrights Horizons), Water by the Spoonful (Second Stage), 10 Out of 12 (Soho Rep), and The End of Longing (MCC).
JON NORMAN SCHNEIDER | Cast (Suit 3/Kal)
Jon Norman Schneider most recently appeared onstage in Keith Bunin's The Coast Starlight at Lincoln Center Theater. Select New York credits include Catch As Catch Can (Playwrights Horizons), The Chinese Lady (The Public), Henry VI Parts 1-3 (NAATCO), Awake and Sing! (NAATCO/The Public), The Oldest Boy (Lincoln Center Theater), Lunch Bunch (Clubbed Thumb), A Map of Virtue (13P), among others. Regionally, he has worked at Actors Theatre of Louisville, The Alley, Alliance, Barrington Stage, Dorset Theatre Festival, The Goodman, Huntington, The Kennedy Center, Long Wharf, The Magic, McCarter, Milwaukee Rep, Mosaic, Northern Stage, The Old Globe, and South Coast Rep. His film and TV credits include Bitter Melon, Manila Is Full of Men Named Boy, The Normals, HBO's Angel Rodriguez, "The Endgame," "Jessica Jones," "Veep," "30 Rock," and "Law & Order: Criminal Intent."
EMILY KACZMAREK | Writer
Emily Kaczmarek (she/her) is an LA-based writer for TV, theatre, and film. Her TV credits include Monsterland for Hulu and The Staircase for HBO Max (for which she was nominated for a 2023 Writers Guild Award), among others. Her plays and musicals have been produced and developed at numerous theaters across the country, including the 5th Avenue Theatre, Second Stage Theater, American Conservatory Theatre, WP Theatre, and many others. Emily is a 2019 Princess Grace Award finalist, a 2019 Kilroys Honorable Mention (for Sam & Lizzie), a 2018 Jonathan Larson Award winner, and a 2018 Kleban Prize finalist, and has been in residence at SPACE on Ryder Farm, the Orchard Project, the O'Neill, the Hermitage Colony, Goodspeed, and more. Emily is the bookwriter of the original musicals Afterwards and Afloat (music and lyrics by Zoe Sarnak), and is currently writing a feature and several TV projects for Amazon, Sony, and Fifth Season. www.emilykaczmarek.com
JO BONNEY | Director
Jo Bonney has directed premieres of plays by: Alan Ball, Hilary Bettis, Eric Bogosian, Eleanor Burgess, Hammaad Chaudry, Culture Clash, Eve Ensler, Jessica Goldberg, Isaac Gomez, Danny Hoch, Ione Patricia Lloyd, Neil LaBute, Warren Leight, Martyna Majok, Lynn Nottage, Dan O'Brien, Dael Orlandersmith, Suzan-Lori Parks, Darci Picoult, John Pollono, Will Power, David Rabe, Jose Rivera, Seth Zvi Rosenfeld, Christopher Shinn, Diana Son, Universes, Naomi Wallace, Michael Weller. Productions of plays by: Caryl Churchill, Nilo Cruz, Anna Deavere Smith, Charles Fuller, Lisa Loomer, Paul Lucas, Carey Perloff, Lanford Wilson. Tony Award nomination for Cost of Living, two Obie Awards for Sustained Excellence of Direction, Lucille Lortel Best Musical and Lucille Lortel Best Revival, Drama Desk nomination for Direction of By the Way, Meet Vera Stark. Audelco Award for Father Comes Home from the Wars. Drama League and Outer Critics Circle Award nominations. Alliance and Lilly Award. Editor of Extreme Exposure: An Anthology of Solo Performance Texts from the Twentieth Century (TCG).
UGO CHUKWU | Cast (Jonah)
Ugo Chukwu is an actor and teaching artist from the Bronx. He most recently was an understudy for Primary Trust at the Roundabout. Other credits: Broadway National tour of Oklahoma!, Lunch Bunch (Play Co/Clubbed Thumb), A Bright New Boise (Signature Theater), What to Send Up When It Goes Down (BAM/Playwrights Horizon), PORTO (WP Theater/Bushwick Starr), Today is My Birthday (P73), Do You Feel Anger (Vineyard). TV/Film: Seasoned, The Path, Inventing Anna, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Late Night with Seth Meyers, Late Late Show with James Corden and Driven which premiered at Tribeca. Ugo has also appeared in commercials for Spectrum mobile. @ugolessinsta
DAMON DAUNNO | Cast (Bunny/Ugly)
Damon Daunno received a Tony and Grammy nomination for his performance as Curly is Daniel Fish’s revival of Oklahoma!. TV/film credits: Interview with a Vampire (AMC), The Hating Game (Amazon), The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon), and Blue Bloods (CBS). Other theater credits: The Lonely Few (The Geffen), The Bengsons’ The Lucky Ones (Lucille Lortel Award Best Lead Actor in a Musical), Daniel Fish’s Oklahoma! (St Ann’s, Bard), Dave Malloy’s Beardo, Anais Mitchell’s Hadestown (NYTW). With UK based Kneehigh Theater Co. Brief Encounter (Bway, Int’l Tour), Wild Bride, Tristan and Yseult and The Tin Drum. He has performed with orchestras on behalf of the US State Dept throughout Russia and Europe. He is a multi-instrumentalist and has scored feature and short length films. He is currently working on an EP of original music, available to stream soon. Graduate of NYU’s Tisch SOA.
ARIA KANE | Cast (Amanda)
Aria Kane is honored to be able to bring Amanda to life for this reading. Theater credits include: The Bedwetter Workshop (Sarah) and Disney Frozen North American Tour (Young Anna). TV: FBI: Most Wanted (Gracie Cartwright), The Blacklist (Young Liz Keen) and SNL. Thanks to Susan Lipton, Bonnie Shumofsky Bloom, Lucius Robinson, Emma Lewis and Stewart Talent, Katie, Emily, Steven, Annie and Annie’s Playhouse for believing in me, Rachel Hoffman and Telsey for giving me every opportunity to shine, and Emily Kaczmarek for trusting me with this extremely challenging and emotional role. Special thanks to Jackie for always being there to work through the big feelings with me. Giant hugs to Mom, Dad, Eena, Dylan & Bonnie for your constant love and support. @AriaKane_Actress
COLBY MINIFIE | Cast (Diary)
Colby Minifie usually plays high strung women on TV (“The Boys”, “Fear The Walking Dead”, “Jessica Jones”, and the upcoming “Gen V” primarily). But she can also be seen in films such as Charlie Kaufman’s I’m Thinking Of Ending Things, Joseph Sackett’s Homebody, Richard Levine’s Submission, Pilcher and Mohler’s Radium Girls, among others. Theater includes the Broadway revivals of Six Degrees Of Separation, Long Day’s Journey Into Night (Roundabout), and the OG The Pillowman. Off-Broadway favorites include Epiphany (LCT), Punk Rock (MCC), Close Up Space (MTC), Landscape of the Body (Signature), and The Dark at the Top of the Stairs (TG). She’s thrilled to be returning to NYSAF.
GABRIELLE POLICANO | Cast (Natalie)
Gabrielle Policano is a New York based actor and poet. A recent graduate of Boston University's BFA Acting program, her theatre credits include Let the Right One In (Berkeley Rep) and Richard II (Luna Stage). She is also an award-winning spoken word poet, having performed regularly with the Inspired Word and the Nuyorican Poets Cafe. gabbypolicano.com
MIRIAM SILVERMAN | Cast (Jen)
Miriam Silverman won the 2023 Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play for her critically-acclaimed performance as "Mavis" in the Broadway production of THE SIGN IN SIDNEY BRUSTEIN'S WINDOW, opposite Oscar Isaac and Rachel Brosnahan. She was seen alongside John Boyega and Connie Britton in the feature BREAKING, and the Amazon series adaptation of DEAD RINGERS, starring Rachel Weisz. Miriam recurred on THE MARVELOUS MRS. MAISEL, and recently guest starred on FLEISHMAN IS IN TROUBLE, THE BLACKLIST, and BLUE BLOODS. Miriam played alongside Carla Gugino in Atlantic Theater Company's 2020 production of ANATOMY OF A SUICIDE after completing the world premiere run of Ethan Coen's A PLAY IS A POEM at the Mark Taper Forum. She also starred in the sold-out run of Will Arbery's off-Broadway play PLANO and made her Broadway debut as the female lead in Ayad Akhtar's JUNK, opposite Steven Pasquale. She is based in NYC.
SHANNON TYO | Cast (Molly)
Shannon Tyo, New York: The Comeuppance (Signature), Regretfully, So the Birds Are (Playwrights), The Far Country (Atlantic), peerless (Primary Stages), The Chinese Lady (Ma-Yi at The Public; Lortel Award, Theater World Award, Drama Desk nom), Kentucky (EST), Bikeman (Tribeca PAC). Select regional: Berkeley Rep, Baltimore Center Stage, Barrington Stage, The Old Globe, Pioneer Theatre, MT Wichita. TV: “30 Rock” (NBC), “The Last O.G.” (TBS), “Rediscovering Christmas” (Lifetime). shannon-tyo.com
DEBORAH COCONIS | Stage Directions
Deborah Coconis has performed regionally with Half Moon Theatre, Howl Playwrights, Berkshire Playwrights Lab, County Players, and in numerous productions at The Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck. She was the associate artistic director of Behind the Mask Theatre in Cambridge, MA, where she developed, performed in, and created masks for their touring productions of folktales. As a visual artist, she taught at and directed several seasons of the Art Effect’s Dutchess Arts Camps. Most recently, she retired as director of Millbrook Community Preschool. She is grateful to support NYSAF in their development of artists and new works through this presentation of SOFT TARGET.
SOPAN DEB | Writer
Sopan Deb (he/him) is a writer for The New York Times, where he has covered sports and culture. He is the author of the critically acclaimed novel "Keya Das's Second Act," and a memoir, "Missed Translations: Meeting The Immigrant Parents Who Raised Me."
TRIP CULLMAN | Director
Trip Cullman (he/him)- Broadway: The Rose Tattoo, Choir Boy, Lobby Hero, Six Degrees of Separation, Significant Other. Select Off Broadway: Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow, YEN, Punk Rock (Obie Award), A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Gynecologic Oncology Unit At Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center Of New York City (MCC); Days Of Rage, The Layover, The Substance of Fire, Lonely I’m Not, Bachelorette, Some Men, Swimming In The Shallows (Second Stage); Unknown Soldier, The Pain Of My Belligerence, Assistance, A Small Fire (Drama Desk nomination), The Drunken City (Playwrights Horizons); Choir Boy (MTC); Murder Ballad (MTC and Union Square Theatre); The Mother, I’m Gonna Pray For You So Hard (Atlantic); Roulette (EST); The Hallway Trilogy: Nursing (Rattlestick); The Last Sunday In June (Rattlestick and Century Center); Dog Sees God (Century Center); US Drag (stageFARM); and several productions with The Play Company. London: The Colby Sisters of Pittsburgh, PA (Tricycle). Select regional: Geffen, Alliance, Old Globe, La Jolla, South Coast Rep, Bay Street, Williamstown Theater Festival.
SIRAJ HUDA | Cast (Amin Khondakar)
Siraj Huda was born in Orissa, India, and considers himself an accidental actor. He took an unconventional path to his acting career, milking cows in Nepal and teaching ice skating in Dubai on the way. After immigrating to the United States to pursue an MBA, Siraj moved to New York City where he has worked in publishing and as a software engineer. When the recession hit in 2008, Siraj discovered acting and never looked back. His varied life experiences contributed to his ability to get under the skin of the characters he portrays.
KESHAV MOODLIAR | Cast (Vikas Choudhury)
Keshav Moodliar was born in Pune, raised between Bombay and New Delhi, and is now an actor based in New York City. He recently graduated with his MFA from The Juilliard School. Last seen Off-Broadway in Madhuri Shekhar’s Queen at Long Wharf and NAATCO. Other Off Broadway credits include - Romeo and Juliet, Measure for Measure and Native Son. Film and TV credits include – Extrapolations (Apple TV), Chicken (Independent), SINK SANK SUNK (mini-series), In Defense of Civil Society (Independent), Untitled Paul Simms Pilot (FX).
RESHMA SHETTY | Cast (Shivani Ghosh)
Reshma Shetty most recently starred as the lead in one of 2022’s most successful Hallmark Christmas Countdown movies, JOLLY GOOD CHRISTMAS. Immediately following graduation from the famed opera department at the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, she garnered the lead role of "Priya" in A.R. Rahman and Andrew Lloyd Webber's first Broadway National Tour of Bombay Dreams. Shetty then opened to rave reviews in her Off-Broadway debut at The New Group, starring in Ayub Khan-Din's Rafta Rafta. Her work on stage immediately parlayed into her next success as she burst on to the small screen in USA's flagship series ROYAL PAINS as one of television's first female South Asian series leads. ROYAL PAINS aired for a staggering 8 seasons of over 100 episodes. The very next season, Reshma starred as a series regular in Jason Katim's CBS drama, PURE GENIUS. Additional television and film credits include recurring on MONARCH (FOX), BLINDSPOT (NBC), Netflix's SHE-RA PRINCESS OF POWER, INSTINCT (CBS), ODD MOM OUT (Bravo), HAPPYISH (Showtime), MADAM SECRETARY (CBS), CSI MIAMI (CBS), 30 ROCK (NBC), and co-starring in the feature film ALLEGIANCE.
ALOK TEWARI | Cast (Dulal Ghosh)
ALOK TEWAR Alok Tewari’s credits include: Broadway: The Band’s Visit Other Theatre: Monsoon Wedding, The Musical (St. Ann’s/Berkeley Rep); Dom Juan (Bard); India Pale Ale (MTC); The Band’s Visit (Atlantic); Awake and Sing! (Public / NAATCO); A Fable, Through the Yellow Hour, War (Rattlestick); Bunty Berman Presents, Rafta, Rafta… (New Group) Television: “Kaleidoscope,” “The Good Fight,” “Ramy,” “FBI,” “Iron Fist,” “House of Cards,” “Madam Secretary,” “Homeland,” “Fringe” Film: 40-Love, The Pirates of Somalia, Shelter.
RITA WOLF | Cast (Susmita Ghosh)
Rita Wolf has recently appeared in the NY Theater scene, in shows including: A Delicate Balance, Out Of Time, What Happened? The Michaels Abroad, The Michaels, An Ordinary Muslim, NYTW (world premiere.) Other NY Theater credits includes Homebody/Kabul, The American Pilot, MTC (Drama Desk nomination, featured actress), Stuff Happens, Public Theater, O Jerusalem, and The Flea Theater. Other selected Regional US theater credits include: The House Of Bernarda Alba. Film and TV credits include Spike Lee’s “Girl Six”, “The Beautiful Laundrette”, “Law and Order” and “The Good Wife”.
SAMANTHA WATSON | Stage Manager
Samantha Watson’s credits include: Broadway: Ohio State Murders, Significant Other, The Real Thing. Off-Broadway: The Secret Life of Bees, The Mother, This Ain’t No Disco, Posterity, Our New Girl, The Jammer (Atlantic); Bobbie Clearly, The Last Match, Significant Other (Roundabout); The Underlying Chris, Days of Rage (2ST); A Funny Thing Happened… (MCC); Lazarus (NYTW); Taking Care of Baby (MTC); Rimbaud In New York, The Master Builder (BAM). Regional: La Jolla Playhouse, Santa Cruz Shakespeare, New York Stage & Film, San Diego Symphony. International: The Bridge Project’s Richard III, The Continuum: Beyond the killing fields (Arts Centre Melbourne). MFA from UC San Diego.
BETH HENLEY | Writer
Beth Henley (she/her) is an award-winning playwright, screenwriter, and professor. Her plays include Crimes of the Heart (Pulitzer Prize in Drama and the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best American Play) The Wake of Jamey Foster, The Miss Firecracker Contest, Am I Blue, The Lucky Spot, The Debutante Ball, Abundance, Control Freaks, Impossible Marriage, Family Week, Ridiculous Fraud, The Jacksonian, Laugh, and The Unbuttoning. Her plays have been produced on Broadway and across the country as well as internationally and translated into twelve languages. Originally from Mississippi, Ms. Henley now lives in Los Angeles.
JAKI BRADLEY | Director
Jaki Bradley (her/her) is a director for theater, TV and film. Recent theater projects include The Paper Dreams of Harry Chin (IRT), How to Load a Musket (LTR) White Noise (Berkeley Rep); Radio Island and Good Men Wanted (NYSAF); House Plant and 1969: The Second Man (NYTW: Next Door); Mama Metallica (Denver Center); and Playing Hot (Ars Nova). She has developed and presented work with The Public, Williamstown, Soho Rep, Clubbed Thumb, the O’Neill, and Arena Stage, among others. She has been a member of the Civilians R&D Group, an artist-in-residence at Ars Nova, a Drama League artist-in-residence and TV/Film Fellow, the Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab, Williamstown Directing Corps, Lincoln Center Director’s Lab, and a U.S. Fulbright Scholar. In TV and film, she has written for Netflix, FX, AGBO, Chernin, and Paramount and is in development with her feature directorial debut starring Adria Arjona, Nicholas Hoult and Riley Keough. www.jakibradley.com
CAROLYN BRAVER | Cast (Sharon Bunn)
Carolyn Braver's credits include: Broadway: Pearl in the revival of The Iceman Cometh, starring Denzel Washington; Zoe in Airline Highway, a role they originated in the Steppenwolf production. Off-Bway: How to Load a Musket (59E59). Regional: Airline Highway; Leveling Up (Steppenwolf); Kill Local (La Jolla Playhouse); Napoli, Brooklyn (Long Wharf); Spelling Bee (Drury Lane Oakbrook); The Knowledge (Steep Theatre). Film: The Ray Donovan Movie, The View From Tall, The Wisdom Tooth. TV: "FBI," "Chicago Fire," "Mercy Street." In addition to acting, they also write, direct and produce for both stage and screen and have many projects in various stages of development. Carolyn’s stoked to be here!
LILY HARRIS | Cast (Low)
Lily Harris is an actor, collaborator, and animal-lover who is incredibly excited to share Downstairs Neighbor with everyone at NYSAF. Recent theatre credits: workshops of Downstairs Neighbor at Flint Repertory Theatre and Berkeley Repertory Theatre, A Christmas Carol and Top Girls at American Conservatory Theater. Film/TV credits: the upcoming A24 film Love Lies Bleeding, "Chicago Med." Lily also co-directed the short film Salty, which won Best U.S. short at the 2022 Seattle Film Festival. MFA: American Conservatory Theater
WILL TURNER | Cast (Wayne Purvis)
Will Turner is an actor and songwriter based in New York, drawn to stories about mental health. Select credits include SeaWife (Naked Angels, Drama Desk Nomination for composing), The Panic of ‘29 (59E59); Regional: Downstairs Neighbor (Berkeley Rep), Twelfth Night (Two River), To Kill A Mockingbird (Trinity Rep), The Cat and the Canary (Berkshire Theater Group). Film: Living Things, New New. MFA: Brown/Trinity, BA: Yale.
UGBA | 2023 FOUNDERS' AWARD RECIPIENT
Ungrateful Black Artist (UGBA - 'oog ba') (pronoun inclusive) is a queer poet, rapper, playwright, actor, and activist based out of Brooklyn, NY. UGBA is the founder/host of CEREMONIES—a Brooklyn based monthly Black-Queer artist showcase held in honor of Essex Hemphill. UGBA is also the founder of "Dark-Skin Support Group" a virtual support network for dark-skin Black Americans in need of a space to discuss the realities of colorism. In 2020, UGBA was named a “Black LGBTQ+ playwright you need to know '' by Time Out NY. UGBA is the script assistant for the Pulitzer Prize winning and 5 time TONY nominated Broadway show Fat Ham. He is an alumnus of the Public Theater’s #BARS program. He is a current member of the Public Theater’s Emerging Writers Group 2020-2023 cohort. He is a 2023 Artivism Fellow through Broadway Advocacy Coalition, a 2022 MAP Grant recipient, a 2020-2021 BAM Resident, and current Artistic Director at NY Writers Coalition.
JAMEEKA HOLLOWAY | 2023 PFAELZER AWARD RECIPIENT
JaMeeka Holloway is a multi-dimensional Human and Artist identifying as an “Imaginative-Cancerian-Empath with a deep curiosity about the complex nature, experiences, and relationships of humans.”
Raised and based in the South, she’s a revolutionary optimist with deep affection and concern for her local and diasporic communities and the plights of current and future art-makers. She is a Storytelling Strategist, often emerging as a director elevating worlds and underrepresented voices, a Pathfinder raising platforms and unlocking opportunities, and a Creative Producer shaping compelling live performance experiences and events.
A recipient of a 2018 Indy Arts Award, JaMeeka is also the recipient of a BOLD Ventures grant from the National BOLD Women's Circle as well as an NC Arts Council Art Equity grant. In 2019, the African American Heritage Commission and Governor Cooper honored her for her contribution to North Carolina's arts and culture landscape.
An alumnus of The Lark Play Development Center Apprenticeship program, JaMeeka has been an Assistant Director with The Oregon Shakespeare Festival and Playmakers Repertory Co.
Her directing has been presented at La MaMa, Durham Performing Art Center, Kent State University, Northern Stage, Shakespeare in Detroit, The National Black Theatre Festival, Classic Stage, Ohio University, Dartmouth College, Duke Performances, and the School of Dramatic Art at UNC-Chapel Hill.
Next up: Finding Freedom: The Journey of Robert Smalls at the Charleston Gaillard Center. www.jdhdirectedit.com
MOLLY BEACH MURPHY | BOYS STATE
Molly Beach Murphy is a writer of plays and musicals from Galveston, Texas. Musicals include: COWBOY BOB (Alley Theatre) and Credit (Civilians R&D + Mercury Store) both with core collaborators Annie Tippe + Jeanna Phillips. Plays include: The Air Got Thick; IKE; Big Bend in the Red Dirt Desert. Molly’s work has been developed with New York Theater Workshop, New York Stage & Film, Williamstown Theater Festival, Ars Nova, Page 73 Productions, The Orchard Project, Ucross Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers’ Fund, Yale Institute for Music Theater, Village Theater Festival of New Musicals, NYMF, Pipeline Theater Company. Molly was a semi-finalist for the Page 73 Playwriting Fellowship and is a New Georges 22/23 Audrey Resident. Published works appear in Vol. 1 Brooklyn, The Hairpin, Santa Ana River Review & American Theatre Magazine.M
JEANNA PHILLIPS | BOYS STATE
Jeanna Phillips (she/her) creates and facilitates communal experiences for people of all ages using music and theatre. COWBOY BOB, her musical with collaborators Molly Beach Murphy and Annie Tippe, premiered at the Alley Theatre in 2023. Her piece for young audiences, The Last Grove, was the inaugural Atlantic for Kids developmental residency at Atlantic Theatre Company. Jeanna makes and records music for kids with Alex Thrailkill as Little Bandits; they released their self-titled album in 2018. As a performer, she’s developed new musicals with Karen O, Toshi Reagon, Cynthia Hopkins, Elizabeth Swados, and others. Alumna: New Victory LabWorks, FGP’s Playground Playgroup, The Civilians R&D Group, Yale Institute of Music Theatre. Graduate candidate at the City University of New York’s Masters of the Arts in Applied Theatre.
ANNIE TIPPE | BOYS STATE
Annie Tippe (she/her) is a director and creator of new work, film and music theater. Recent theater credits include the premiere of Dave Malloy's OCTET at Signature Theatre Company, for which she won the Lucille Lortel Award for Best Direction and was named an SDC Callaway Award Finalist. She also directed the premiere and subsequent tours of Dave Malloy's award-winning GHOST QUARTET. Recent: Life After (Goodman; Jeff Award Nominee), COWBOY BOB (Alley Theatre), Your Own Personal Exegesis (LCT), Cult of Love (IAMA), Continuity (Goodman), The Hombres (Two River), and (Bushwick Starr). Her film "HELP ME MARY'' won Best Narrative Short at the Lower East Side Film Festival. Former Ars Nova Director-in-Residence, Drama League Directing Fellow, Williamstown Directing Corps. UPCOMING: POTUS at Berkeley Rep. annietippe.com
AARON COLEMAN | The Dramatists Guild Foundation
Aaron Coleman is a New York City-based playwright and lyricist originally from Los Angeles. He is honored to be on the 2022 Short List for the Yale Drama Series Prize for his play Tell Me I’m Gorgeous At The End Of The World. In February 2022, his play Where Have All The Fairies Gone? had a reading with Brave New World Repertory Theatre. Recently, his original short family musical Leo’s Big Day Out (music by Chuck Pelletier) was virtually staged by Circle in the Square Theatre School. Tell Me I’m Gorgeous also received a lab reading with The Workshop Theater. His play Uncle Remus, His Life and Times, As Told to Aaron Coleman was chosen by Primary Stages for their 2019 ESPA Drills reading series at the famed Lucille Lortel Theatre. Over the past couple years, Aaron been a Semi-Finalist for the O’Neill and the Princess Grace Award, a two-time Finalist for the Jerome Fellowship at the Playwrights’ Center, a Finalist for New York Theater Workshop’s 2050 Fellowship, and a two-time Finalist for The Civilians’ R&D Group. Select works: Lyricist for the Off-Broadway musical Imelda written with East West Players and New Musicals Inc. (Pan Asian Rep, David Henry Hwang Theatre). Co-bookwriter for Stay Forever: The Life and Music of Dusty Springfield (Renberg Theatre), produced at New World Stages as Forever Dusty. Aaron has developed musicals for McCoy Rigby Entertainment, the Celebration Theatre, and American Folklore Theatre. MFA: Writing for Screen and Television from the USC School of Cinematic Arts.
NICHOLAS CONNORS | The Dramatists Guild Foundation
Nicholas Connors is a composer/lyricist, orchestrator, and conductor. His writing spans many genres and musical styles, from an award-winning short chamber musical, Here, In The Park to a zany sci-fi romp, Space Voyage: The Musical Frontier. Nicholas is currently at work on a new folk rock musical, Ten Long Years (book by Kyle Wilson) and an untitled bluegrass-infused musical about the West Virginia Coal Mine Wars. His songs have been performed throughout the country by artists including Karen Olivo, Kyle Selig, and Jenna Ushkowitz. Nicholas is the Assistant Music Director of the new Broadway musical Almost Famous and his past Broadway credits include Kristin Chenoweth’s For The Girls (Associate Music Director, Orchestrations) and Mean Girls (Keyboard). Nicholas was also an Associate Music Director for Kristin Bell’s Encore! on Disney+. His orchestrations have been performed at Carnegie Hall, The Metropolitan Opera, and in televised concerts by some of America’s top performers and orchestras. Website: www.Nicholas-Connors.com Instagram: @nick_connors
JORIAH KWAMÉ | The Dramatists Guild Foundation
Joriah Kwamé is a composer/lyricist/librettist based in NYC. In 2019, his career was launched when he won Tony Nominee Taylor Louderman’s Write Out Loud competition for “Little Miss Perfect,” which has since grossed over 15 million views and inspired a Broadway-aimed musical of the same name. He is a recipient of the 2020 ASCAP Foundation Cole Porter Award and was one of six ASCAP writers featured in the ASCAP Songwriters: Next Generation showcase. He participated in the 2020 Johnny Mercer Songwriting Project. He has written pieces for The New York Film Academy, Prospect Theater Company, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, and 54 Below. Andrew Lippa enlisted him to write a piece for the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus premiere song cycle, Songs Of The Pheonix, alongside the likes of Stephen Schwartz, Stephen Sondheim, and Ingrid Michaelson. With Pasek and Paul, he co-wrote “Top Of The World” from the upcoming Sony Picture Film Lyle, Lyle Crocodile, performed by Shawn Mendes. He has many musical projects in development, ranging greatly in style and subject matter. His upcoming work HOW TO: YOU is a 2022 O’Neil finalist and was featured in the 2022 NAMT Songwriter Showcase. He is a 2021 Jonathan Larson finalist. @JoriahKwame Joriahkwame.com
MATTHEW LIBBY | The Dramatists Guild Foundation
Matthew Libby is a writer and actor based in Brooklyn, by way of Los Angeles. His play DATA won the Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Award, and was adapted as a digital production presented by the Tony-winning Alliance Theatre in May 2021, a production featured in a New York Times review of virtual theatre works that “clear a path toward continued innovation and growth of the form.” Matt is a two-time Princess Grace Award finalist, two-time O’Neill Playwrights Conference semifinalist, and Blue Ink Playwriting Award featured finalist, and his work has been produced and developed by theaters across the country, including Alliance Theatre, Pioneer Theatre Company, The Kennedy Center, National New Play Network, Theater Masters, The Barrow Group, The Road Theater Company, WNYU’s Theatre-in-the-Sound, and others. With Stanford Repertory Theater, he helped devise and acted in THE MANY FACES OF FARCE, which was nominated for a 2018 Bay Area Critics Award for Best Production. As a TV writer, he is developing projects with eOne, Beau Willimon’s Westward Productions, and Alex Gibney’s Jigsaw Productions, and his screenwriting work has been recognized by The Black List and Script Pipeline. Matt studied cognitive science and creative writing at Stanford University, and received his MFA in dramatic writing from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, where he was awarded the Chair’s Award for Distinguished Achievement. He is a proud member of the Writers Guild of America and the Dramatists Guild of America. https://www.matthew-libby.com/
JULIÁN MESRI | The Dramatists Guild Foundation
Julián Mesri is a New York-based Argentinean-American composer and writer who makes multilingual plays and musicals in the US and around the world. He is a current member of the Public Theater Emerging Writers Group and received a 2020-2021 EST/Sloan Commission for his musical Favaloro: A Heart in Pieces. This spring he will be writing the songs for the Public Mobile Unit’s musical adaptation for Comedy of Errors directed by Rebecca Martinez. Recent productions include Telo (Live and In Color Finalist, O’Neill NMTC Finalist), Bartolomé de las Casas Ruins My Pool (O’Neill NPC Finalist), Immersion (Ingenio Festival at Milagro Theater, Columbia/Roundabout Finalist, BAPF Semi-Finalist.) Mesri has been an Emerging Artist of Color Fellow and Usual Suspect at NYTW, a Van Lier fellow at Repertorio Español, and the recipient of an ASCAP Scholarship. His adaptation of Fuenteovejuna received the HOLA Outstanding production award. He has also translated dramatic works for the Lark US/Mexico Exchange and PEN World Voices. He received his MFA from Columbia University.
APRIL DAE OKPWAE | The Dramatists Guild Foundation
April Dae Okpwae is a performer, playwright, composer, librettist & community organizer who utilizes comedy to highlight the diversity of black identity while exploring the intersectionality of religion in racial, economic, & gender inequities. Her 15-character solo show, I’mma Do Me, satirically exposes the impact of poverty in America & has won several awards including Best Emerging Actress at United Solo Theatre Festival in NYC and Best Short Play at Atlanta Black Theatre Festival. Her concert credits include Poetic Theatre Production’s Feeling Good as Ritual, Musical Theatre Factory’s 4X15, and Maestra’s & Parent Artist Advocacy League’s Motherhood Concert. Her music(al) video, “Be Soft Be Pretty,” from her latest musical in development, Queens of Solomon, was a 2021 Hip Hop Film Festival Official Selection. As a community organizer & nonprofit leader for the past 15 years, April Dae has worked in black & brown communities throughout New York City and Detroit, MI conducting performance-based development workshops. She is a founding board member of BlackCount, an arts-based voter education, engagement, & advocacy organization. Born & raised in Detroit, April Dae received her BFA from SUNY Purchase performing in television, theatres, & universities throughout the country.