Storefront Church – San Francisco Playhouse Holiday Play

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STOREFRONTStorefront Church

Written by John Patrick Shanley
Directed by Joy Carlin

It’s almost Christmas, and Tony, Oscar and Pulitzer winner, John Patrick Shanley (Doubt) transports us to a wintery Bronx, where gluttonous bankers devour giant gingerbread houses, a disillusioned preacher rediscovers his faith, and a modern day Scrooge is redeemed. Read the Press Release

“Irresistible… [the] ensemble makes believers of us all.”-San Francisco Chronicle


Production Photos:

Photos by Jessica Palopoli. *Member of AEA

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Pre-Production Photos:

Photos by Lauren English



Derek Fischer (Tom) is a local actor and educator and is proud to be making his SF Playhouse debut.  He is a company member of both Cutting Ball and Pianofight productions. He has worked with numerous companies throughout the bay area including:  Berkeley Rep, Cal Shakes, Pianofight, Sleepwalkers Theatre, Town Hall, The Bay Area One Acts Festival and others.  Favorite productions include: Of Mice and Men, The White Plague, The Chairs, The Bald Soprano, and The Pond.   He feels fortunate to live in an area that presents opportunities to cultivate and hone his interests and be amongst his family and close friends.


Rod Gnapp*(Reed) A veteran of Bay Area stages, Mr. Gnapp was last seen at the San Francisco Playhouse in Behanding in Spokane.  He recently appeared in Buried Child and Se Llama Cristina at the Magic Theatre and The Beauty Queen of Leenane at Marin Theatre Company.  Theatre credits also include work at American Conservatory Theater, Berkeley Rep, California Shakespeare Theater, San Jose Rep, Aurora Theatre Company, TheatreWorks, the Huntington Theatre Company, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Seattle Rep, Virginia Playhouse and the Pittsburgh Public Theater.   Mr. Gnapp can be seen in the independent feature film Touching Home by the Miller Brothers, with Ed Harris. He can also be seen in Valley of the Hearts Delite, Calendar Confloption (Pixar), and Return to the Streets of San Francisco.  He is the recipient of many Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle (BATCC) Awards and is a graduate of the American Conservatory Theater’s MFA program.


Carl Lumbly* (Chester) Last seen earlier this season at the SF Playhouse as Ralph D. in Stephen Adly Gurgis’ The MotherF**ker with the Hat, Carl Lumbly has been busy.  Most recently, Carl played the lead role, Mr. Ames, in the world premiere of Regina Taylor’s Off-Broadway play Stop. Reset at the Signature Theatre in NYC.  Bay Area audiences last saw Carl as an Irish serial killer in the first American production of Terminus by Mark O’Rowe, directed by Jon Tracy at the Magic Theatre.


Aeron Macintyre* (Understudy) has been acting, directing and producing for stage, film and television for more than 25 years. He has appeared in several productions at the San Francisco Playhouse including the critically acclaimed Abraham Lincoln’s Big Gay Dance Party and Coraline. Film and television credits include Trauma, The Evidence, Hearts Afire, Killer Clowns from Outer Space and the starring role in Nominated.  Since 1985 he has been teaching both privately and in professional training programs both here and in Los Angeles.  He is currently an instructor and the Associate Director of Film Acting Bay Area.


Gabriel Marin* (Donaldo) is delighted to return to the San Francisco Playhouse where he was previously seen in Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, The MotherF**ker with the Hat, Wirehead, Landscape of the Body, Bug, Jesus Hopped the A Train, and Our Lady of 121st St. Additional credits over the past year include This is How it Goes at Aurora Theatre, Pilgrims Musa and Sheri in the New World at Center REP, The Happy Ones at Magic Theatre, and  It’s a Wonderful Life at Marin Theatre Company. Locally Marin has appeared with American Conservatory Theater, Aurora Theatre Company, Bay Area Playwrights Foundation, Black Box Theatre, Center REP, Magic Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, PlayGround, San Francisco Fringe Festival, San Jose Rep, San Francisco Playhouse, TheatreWorks, The Jewish Theatre, Thick Description, Word for Word, Z Space, among others. Mr. Marin was named Best Actor by the East Bay Express in their “Best of The East Bay 2010”. Mr. Marin was named as co-MVP for 2011 by Sam Hurwitt (, Marin Independent Journal, KQED). He has performed on NBC, CBS, PBS and the BBC. Marin will next appear in Napoli! with the American Conservatory Theatre.


Ray Reinhardt*(Ethan) is delighted to be back again at San Francisco Playhouse after last appearing here in The Fantasticks.  In his over 40 years as an actor, Ray has had a wonderful time working with many esteemed Bay Area theater companies such as ACT (for 25 years in various roles including leads in Desire Under the Elms, The Visit, The Miser, Sleuth and Cyrano de Bergerac); San Jose Repertory Theatre (Willy Loman, Death of a Salesman); Berkeley Repertory Theatre (Con Melody, Touch of the Poet; James Tyrone, Long Day’s Journey Into Night); Aurora Theatre (The Price, Awake and Sing); Marin Shakespeare Company and San Francisco Shakespeare Festival (Lear, King Lear).  He has also performed on Broadway (A Flea in Her Ear and in Tiny Alice with Sir John Gielgud) as well in a number of television and film roles.  What a joy to be working with all of these wonderful actors and our wonderful and esteemed director, Joy Carlin.


Gloria Weinstock*(Jessie Cortez) is elated to return to professional theatre as a cast member in Storefront Church.  To work under the direction of Joy Carlin is a plus. Gloria has acted in the Bay Area and nationally and is currently chairing the Theatre Arts Department at City College of San Francisco.


Creative Team:

Abra Berman (Costume Designer) has been designing costumes for over twenty five years.    Collaborations include San Francisco Playhouse, Berkeley Playhouse, West Bay Opera, Marin Shakespeare Company, Company C Contemporary Ballet, Alonzo King Lines Ballet, Berkeley Opera, Brava Theatre, Pocket Opera, Lamplighters Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, Alameda Civic Light Opera, Palo Alto Players, The De Young Museum, The Museum of Performance and Design, Hillbarn Theatre, Arclight Theatre, Contra Costa Musical Theatre, Ballet Califia, Cinnabar Theatre, and Sonoma County Repertory Theatre, among others.  Abra has an MFA from UCLA in theatrical costume design.

Charlotte Brockman (Administrative Manager) A theatre enthusiast since that first taste of stardom at age 7 in the school play, Charlotte is thrilled to find her professional home here at the Playhouse!  Over the years she has been known to tread the boards and work backstage.  She is proud to be working “upstairs” for a company with such incredible artistic vision.  Muchas Gracias to Bill, Susi, and of course, Erin, without whom she would not be here!

Joy Carlin (Director) is a former Associate Artistic Director at A.C.T. and member of the acting company for many years. Carlin has also been Resident Director and Interim Artistic Director at the Berkeley Repertory Theatre. She is a member of Playground and of 4 unions including the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC) At San Francisco Playhouse she directed The Ride Down Mt. Morgan and Mrs. Bob Cratchit’s Wild Christmas Binge and appeared in Kimberly Akimbo and Harper Regan. Most recently she acted in Marin Theatre Company’s Beauty Queen of Leenane and directed After the Revolution at Aurora Theatre Co. and can be seen as The Lady on the Plane in Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine.


Susi Damilano (Producing Director) is co-founder of the San Francisco Playhouse (SFPH); she is a four-time recipient of the Bay Area Theatre Critic Circle (BATCC) award for Best Female Performance in Harper Regan, Bug, Six Degrees of Separation, and Reckless. At SFPH she has performed leading roles in Abigail’s Party, Harper Regan, Coraline, Slasher, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Landscape of the Body, First Person Shooter, Jesus Hopped the ‘A’ Train, The Crucible, Kimberly Akimbo, Our Town and The Smell of the Kill. Her directing credits include A Behanding in Spokane, Den of Thieves and Wirehead* and the West Coast Premieres of Honey Brown Eyes*, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, Coronado, The Mystery Plays and Roulette and the World Premiere of Daniel Heath’s Seven Days in the 2010 Sandbox Series. (*nominated for BATCC Directing award.)

David K H Elliott (Lighting Design) has designed for Berkeley Repertory Theatre, American Ballet Theater, Playwrights Horizons, Della Davidson, Robert Wilson, Keith Terry, the Hartford Stage Company, the Organic Theater Company, the Joe Goode Performance Group, California Shakespeare Festival, Jess Curtis / Gravity, San Francisco Ballet, the Marin Theatre Company, West Wave Dance Festival, Robert Moses’ Kin, Teatro Zinzanni, ODC/San Francisco, Beach Blanket Babylon,  and, most recently, the Sixth International Body Music Festival. He received Chicago’s Joseph Jefferson Award for Organic’s WARP and won two Drama-Logues at California Shakespeare Festival. He recently retired from UC Berkeley after twenty-four years of teaching lighting design. Storefront Church is his first design for SF Playhouse.

Bill English* (Artistic Director) spent his life producing works of art. Bill is an accomplished singer, pianist and composer.  He has acted in films, television and professional theatre and is a member of all the performing unions. Bill’s work has been recognized with numerous awards for acting, directing, sound and set design. Under Bill’s leadership The SF Playhouse, has earned multiple nominations and awards making it the fastest growing and most awarded theatre company in San Francisco.

Lauren English* (Education and Casting Director) is a founding member of the San Francisco Playhouse. At the Playhouse she played leading roles in Grounded, Reasons to be Pretty, Bell, Book & Candle, Becky Shaw, Reborning, Cabaret, Our Town and The Glory of Living. New York Theater: TACT’s Off Broadway Production of The Cocktail Party, Hamlet at the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, and The Idealist at The New York Times Theatre. She has also worked at the Public Theater, Ensemble Studio Theater, Lark Theatre and Playwrights Realm among others. Locally, she has worked at the California Shakespeare Theater, Word for Word, Marin Shakespeare Company, and Magic Theatre and is a PlayGround company member. She is a two-time BATCC award winner and three-time Dean Goodman award recipient. She holds an MFA from NYU’s Tisch Graduate Acting Program.

Tatjana Genser* (Production Stage Manager) is right behind you, pushing all the buttons for this wonderful show. Other previous and current occupations in her life in theatre include costume designer, production manager, props artisan, graphic designer, special effects (of the blood and gore variety) as well as dramaturgy and copywriting. Thanks to her boyfriend, cat and all other loved ones for putting up with her when her crazy is showing and for loving her in return.

Amy Glazer (Associate Artistic Director) has directed numerous World, American and West Coast premieres. Recent productions include The Understudy at San Jose Rep. The The Couch at 3 Girls Theatre, Model Apartment at Traveling Jewish Theatre and Abigail’s Party, Becky Shaw, Tigers Be Still, Harper Regan, Animals Out of Paper, Shining City, and The Scene at San Francisco Playhouse. At Magic Theatre her work included The God Of Hell, The Crowd You’re In With, The Sweetest Swing in Baseball, Blue Surge and The American in Me, Drifting Elegant,  Tape, and Wyoming. At Marin Theatre Company Amy has directed What The Butler Saw, Frozen, Displaced, Life x 3, My Old Lady, The Music Lesson, Misalliance, Candida and Indiscretions. She has also directed plays for Eureka Theatre, TheatreWorks, SJ Stage Company and the Assembly Theatre at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland. Also a filmmaker, Amy has directed Ball Lightning, Drifting Elegant and Seducing Charlie Barker, available on VOD, Netflix and Amazon. All three films were developed from plays she previously directed. Amy Glazer is a theatre and film professor at San Jose State University.

Issere Grier (Production Assistant) has been with the San Francisco Playhouse since September 2012. She started out as a production intern and assisted with shows Motherfucker with the Hat and Bell Book and Candle. She has Spotlighted for Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo. Issere is currently a student at Laney College majoring in Theatre. She is so blessed to be a part of this world of theater at the San Francisco Playhouse.

Theodore J.H. Hulsker (Sound Design) is pleased to make his debut at The San Francisco Playhouse. Theodore’s recent work includes Mugwumpin’s The Great Big Also, San Francisco Playhouses’s Sandbox production of Grounded, NCTC’s American Dream, Shotgun Player’s Strangers, Babies and Cutting Ball’s The Chairs. He was the 2012 recipient of the Eric Landismen Fellowship for an emerging designer. Go Gators.

Kirk Johnson (Audience Development Manager) originally hails from Columbia, South Carolina but has called San Francisco home for over three years now. He is elated to be joining the Playhouse staff as full-time box office guru. Big thanks to Bill, Susi, Erin and the rest of the San Francisco Playhouse family. Enjoy the show!

John (Bear) Kelley (Technical Director) has worked all over the world as a technical director, designer and road manager for countless productions. Previous credits Ewing Ventures, Sierra Stages, Theatre works, Paramount theatre Denver, Denver Center for the Arts, C B S Rocky Mountain Scenic, CO. Old Globe Theatre San Diego, San Diego Rep, San Diego Starlight Opera. Disneyland (Toontown), Stage Lights and Sound Bay Area, Scenic Highlights Inc. Los Angeles.5 Tours- Chinese Acrobatic of Taiwan. 3 Tours- Peking Acrobatic of China.

Maggie Koch (Resident Stage Manager) A native of Pittsburgh, PA, Maggie graduated from San Francisco State University with a degree in Technical Theatre. In 2005 she began as an intern with the SF Playhouse and has been with the company ever since—now taking on the role as a Resident Stage Manager.  Some of her favorite productions include: Art, Jesus Hopped the ‘A’ Train, Coronado, Cabaret, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, Den of Thieves, Slasher, Wirehead, Tigers Be Still, Period of Adjustment, The Aliens & A Behanding In Spokane, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and reasons to be pretty. She would like to thank: her boyfriend, Ed—for always making her laugh, her family—for believing, the SFPH company—for being her second family and her friends—for providing constant support. Go Steelers!

Lindsay Krumbein (East Bay Youth Coordinator) is thrilled to work with Rising Stars Education to bring youth from all over the Bay Area to SF.  Lindsay served as Education Director for three years, and is the founder of Gritty City Repertory Youth Theatre in Oakland, where she produces edgy, modern works and re-imagined Shakespeare with Oakland youth.  She looks forward to increasing the number of schools that participate in the Rising Stars Theatre Attendance Program, and to offer increased access to youth who lack theatre programs in their schools.

Ewa Muszynska (Scenic Artist) has been creating new worlds at San Francisco Playhouse since Coraline.  She has also worked with Shotgun Players, Festival Opera, Berkeley Playhouse, San Jose Opera and many other theater companies. She became a citizen of the US on October 3, 2012.

Yusuke Soi (Props Artisan) is a Bay Area theatre artist, SFSU graduate of 2013. His recent work includes prop design for Thrillpeddlers’ Shocktoberfest 14 and NCTC’s My Beautiful Launderette. His upcoming work includes puppet design for Bay Area Children’s Theatre’s Where the Mountain Meets the Moon, set design for Do It Live’s The Tempest and Foothill College’s Little Shop of Horrors. His portfolio can be viewed at

Watch the Trailer

Behind the Scenes

“A fascinating, intensely relevant play with an exceptional cast” –

“Miracles do happen… [Director Joy Carlin’s] ensemble makes believers of us all.” –San Francisco Chronicle

“This is the rare holiday show that engages the mind as well as well as the heartstrings.” –San Jose Mercury News

“Brilliantly directed by Joy Carlin and featuring an accomplished cast, Storefront Church is a beautifully constructed play.” –For All Events


Buy Tickets Previews Start: Nov 26, 2013

Opens: Nov 30, 2013

Closes: Jan 11, 2014

Run time: 2 Hours (including a 10 minute intermission)

Show Times: Tuesday – Thursday at 7pm, Friday at 8pm, Saturday at 3pm & 8pm, Select Sundays at 2pm.

Tickets: $20 – $100

Order Online or call (415) 677-9596

Box office Hours: Tues-Sat 1:00 pm-6:00 pm

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