in a word – Cast and Creative Team Toggle

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Cast

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Greg Ayers* (Man) is over-the-moon-excited to be back at San Francisco Playhouse where, earlier this year, he understudied several roles in Ideation.  He has also appeared at the The New York International Fringe Festival (Getting Even with Shakespeare), the Aurora (Small Tragedy), PCPA Theaterfest (The Lion in Winter), the Orpheum Theatre (Holes) among many others. You can see him in the mockumentary Unflinching Triumph; The Philip Rockhammer Story.  Greg has written several plays, the most recent being Rated M for Mature which premiered at the New York International Fringe Festival and was included in the Best Of Fringe Encore Series. A big "Thank You" to Michael. GregAyers.com
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Jessica Bates* (Fiona) is thrilled to be performing with San Francisco Playhouse! NY Theatre includes: Medea (Riverside Theatre), Love in the Time of Unemployment (Gershwin Hotel), The Magnificent Cuckold (East River Commedia Theatre) American Dreams, Lost and Found (Lucille Lortel Theatre) 365 Days/365 Plays (The Women’s Project), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Piper Theatre). National Tours; Twelfth Night, Hamlet (The National Shakespeare Company), American Dreams Lost and Found, As You Like It (The Acting Company). Regional Theatre: After the Revolution, The Lyons (Aurora Theatre), Noises Off (Idaho Shakespeare Festival) Or, (Capital Stage), The Voysey Inheritance (Milwaukee Rep), The Mask of Moriarty, Travesties, The Seagull, Tonight at 8:30, Henceforward (Pittsburgh Irish and Classical Theatre), Cyrano De Bergerac (Hangar Theatre). Theatre Abroad includes; Mind The Gap (UK Tour), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Tempest (Cambridge Shakespeare Festival), Miss Julie (Man in the Moon Theatre, London), The River Merchant’s Wife (Edinburgh Fringe Festival).

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Cassidy Brown* (Guy) is making his San Francisco Playhouse debut.  He has been seen at Theatreworks in DoubtDistractedThe 39 Steps, and The Loudest Man on Earth, at Marin Shakes in Complete History of America (Abridged) and The Tempest, at San Jose Rep in Game On and at Shotgun Players in The Death of MeyerholdThe JustCabaret, and The Forest War.  Other credits include Bosoms and Neglect at The Aurora Theatre andHunter Gatherers and The North Plan at Capital Stage and numerous shows at PacRep in Carmel. Cassidy hosts a monthly storytelling event called The Shout, and is a proud member of AEA and Theater Bay Area.

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Creative Team

Karina Chavarin (Costume Designer) is joyed to be working on her first show with San Francisco Playhouse. She recently graduated from UC Santa Cruz, with a major mixing Costume Design and Art History. Some of her noteworthy works with the university include Rent directed by Danny Scheie and Machinal directed by Kirsten Brandt (winning her the Art’s Deans Award for Costume Design). More recently, she designed costumes at Renegade Theatre Experiment (San Jose), Custom Made Theatre Co. (SF), and Cal Shakes Conservatory (Berkeley). She also worked as the hair & make-up designer and design assistant on And I and Silence at the Magic Theatre (SF).  Working and learning with Theatreworks, San Jose Rep, and Shakespeare Santa Cruz have also helped to pave her way as a young designer.  Now, she is looking forward to getting started as the Costume Design Assistant for the Cal Shakes 2015 Main Stage Summer Season.

Beth Hall (Stage Manager) is thrilled to be making her San Francisco Stage Management debut with the San Francisco Playhouse’s Sandbox Series. A resident of Fresno, CA, she graduated from Fresno State with a degree in Technical Theatre. She moved to the city in October to begin an internship with the Playhouse, and has loved every minute of it.  Previous show credits include: Promises, Promises, The Absurd Masterworks, Our Town, The Nutcracker, Arabian Nights, Undergrad, and Sty of the Blind Pig. She would like to say a big thank you to her family- if not for them, she wouldn’t be here today.

Lauren English (Casting Director) is a founding company member at San Francisco Playhouse where she casts all the main stage and Sandbox productions. Favorite San Francisco Playhouse roles onstage include: Kate in Seminar, The Pilot in Grounded, Steph in reasons to be pretty, Becky in Becky Shaw, Sally in Cabaret, Emily in Our Town and Lisa in 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 for Word for Word, Marin Theatre Company, Marin Shakespeare Company, PlayGround and Magic Theatre among others. She is a two-time BATCC award winner and three-time Dean Goodman award recipient. Training: Foothill Theatre Conservatory, MFA from NYU’s Graduate Acting Program. This spring she will be over at The Aurora Theatre playing Sally in Talley’s Folly.

Leah Hammond (Props Artisan) is excited to work on her second show with San Francisco Playhouse after a great run of the Playhouse’s 77%. She is a graduate of Mount Holyoke College and has worked as a props master, scene shop assistant, and assistant scenic artist for shows including Skin of Our TeethHeartbreak HouseMandrake, and Rent. She also dabbles in acting, and favorite recent roles include Lenny in Rumors and Universanaut in Disinsemination.

Matthew Johns (Lighting Designer)’ first show with San Francisco Playhouse, having recently designed for Giovanna Sardelli at TheatreWorks on The Lake Effect. Other works of note include the media and lighting design of The Memory Tax off-Broadway, the film premiere and interactive media installation of Awaken in Los Angeles, and assisting the SITI Company’s production of Persians at the Getty Villa. Mr. Johns recently completed his M.F.A. at UCLA’s School of Theatre, Film, and Television, and is freelancing as a lighting and media designer in both the Bay Area and Los Angeles.

Catalina Niño (Set Designer) is happy to be designing her first show for San Francisco Playhouse Sandbox Series. Her most recent work includes Dragon Play for Impact Theatre in Berkeley, Pirates of Penzance for CMT in San José, The Fantasticks and On Golden Pond for Los Altos StageCo, References to Salvador Dalí Make me Hot and The Trial of Lucullus at SFSU. Currently she is designing Mulan for CMT and Fiddler On The Roof for the Berkeley Playhouse. Catalina received an MFA in Set Design from San Francisco State University.

Madeleine Oldham (Sound Designer) is very happy to be working with San Francisco Playhouse again. She has worked as a sound designer for Crowded Fire, Shotgun Players, JustTheater, AlterTheater, the Bay Area One-Act Festival, PlayGround, and Geva Theatre inRochester, NY, among others. For San Francisco Playhouse, she designed sound for 77%. She also hosts a program on KALX radio, 90.7fm.

Jordan Puckett (Production Manager) is the Literary Manager at the San Francisco Playhouse, first starting her tenure as an intern in 2011. Her play, Inevitable, was presented as part of the Sandbox Series last March and she is a proud member of the Playground Writers Pool. She also moonlights as a lighting designer, having most recently designed Bauer, The Motherf**ker with the Hat, Reunion, and Private Parts at San Francisco Playhouse. 

Giovanna Sardelli (Director) is an award-winning director who has worked on several world premieres of plays by Rajiv Joseph, Matthew Lopez, Theresa Rebeck, Lynn Rosen, Joe Gilford, and Zoe Kazan, among others. She has worked Off-Broadway at the Cherry Lane Theatre, Second Stage, Vineyard, Playwrights Realm, The Women’s Project and Ensemble Studio Theatre and Roundabout Theatre Company. She has directed numerous productions for Dorset Theatre Festival, where she is the Resident Director, Barrington Stage Company, Actor’s Theatre of Louisville, The Old Globe, Hartford Stage Company, Cleveland Play House, Cincinnati Playhouse, CTG, and Hudson Stage Company, among others. She is the Director of New Works for TheatreWorks, where her production of Rajiv Joseph’s The Lake Effect is running through March. She received her MFA in acting from NYU and is also a graduate of their Director’s Lab. Currently running: Little Children Dream of God by Jeff Augustine (Roundabout, NYC). Upcoming: Intimate Apparel (Dorset Theatre Festival), Veils (Barrington Stage Co).

Lauren Yee (Playwright) Plays of Lauren Yee include Ching Chong Chinaman (Pan Asian, Mu Performing Arts, SIS Productions, Impact Theatre), Crevice (Impact), The Hatmaker’s Wife (Playwrights Realm, The Hub, Moxie Theatre, AlterTheater, PlayPenn), Hookman (Company One workshop, upcoming at Encore Theatre), in a word (Cleveland Public Theatre, Hangar and Williamstown workshops, upcoming at Mo’olelo), King of the Yees (Goodman Theatre commission), Samsara (Victory Gardens, O’Neill Conference, Bay Area Playwrights Festival, upcoming at Chance Theatre)and The Tiger Among Us (MAP Fund, Mu). Former Dramatists Guild fellow, MacDowell Colony fellow, Public Theater Emerging Writers Group member, Women’s Project Lab playwright, Second Stage Shank playwright-in-residence, and Playwrights Realm Page One resident playwright. Samsara was a nominee for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize and L. Arnold Weissberger Award. The Hatmaker’s Wife was an Outer Critics Circle nominee for the John Gassner Award. She is a Ma-Yi Writers’ Lab member and Playwrights’ Center Core Writer. Lauren is under commission from the Goodman Theatre, Lincoln Center/LCT3, Mixed Blood, and Encore Theatre. BA: Yale. MFA: UCSD. www.laurenyee.com

* Members of Actors’ Equity Association. This theatre operates under an agreement with Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.

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