Biographies

Amanda Jane Shank (Playwright) is a writer, photographer and theater artist currently based in Los Angeles.  Her plays have been developed in conjunction with the CalArts School of Theater, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the National New Play Network’s MFA Playwrights Workshop, The Theater Masters National MFA Playwrights Festival, The Unicorn Theater, The Blank Theatre Company and with directors such as The Fountain Theatre’s Simon Levy and New Paradise Laboratories’ Whit MacLaughlin.  Her work has been published in the U.S. through Samuel French and translated internationally. As dramaturg, she has worked with American Repertory Theatre and Boston’s SpeakEasy Stage Company, as well on the CalArts productions of The Portrait of a Lady (dir. Alexis Macnab) and In the Jungle of Cities (dir. Bart DeLorenzo). Amanda is currently an MFA candidate in the Writing for Performance program at California Institute of the Arts.  Prior to coming to LA, Amanda worked with Pomegranate Arts on such projects as Lucinda Childs’ Dance, Laurie Anderson’s Delusion and the 2012 remounting of Einstein on the Beach.

Alexis Macnab (Director) is a director, devisor, and performer whose work has been produced across the country and internationally at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Drawing from diverse training in story-theater, mime, puppetry, choreography, and traditional theatre, Macnab makes performances that challenge boundaries of classification. While in New York, she made several devised multi-disciplinary shows including a dance-theater/shadow-puppet adaptation of the Tristan and Iseult legend, Shipwreck, and a spectacle-installation in collaboration with puppet artist Kate Brehm, Dark Space, which was awarded a Performing Arts Residency by chashama arts in 2009. Her clown cabaret Hôtel de l’Avenir, called “a wonderful production” (ThreeWeeks) “spellbinding” and “a real treat” (Informed Edinburgh), was presented in New York and Scotland. Now based in Los Angeles, Macnab continues to explore new techniques and is developing her practice in stop-motion animation. Currently in her last semester at the California Institute of the Arts, Macnab is studying for her MFA in Directing for the Theater. At CalArts she began her collaboration with fellow classmate and award-winning playwright Amanda Shank, and their partnership, Echo Hart Commons, is a commitment to rigor and innovation in the service of genre-defying artistic exploration.

Meg Annand (Co-Producer) Theater Gargantua: The Justice Project (Producing Assistant). Walt Disney Imagineering/CalArts: Blue Sky Initiative. CalArts: Portrait of a Lady (Producer), The House of Bernarda Alba (Producer), New Works Festival (Producer), Phaedra’s Love (Producer), The Death of the Last Black Man in the Whole Entire World (Co- Producer), Ruins (Co-Producer). CalArts/Chung Ang: Lear/Layer (Assistant Production Manager). AUTS: Cabaret (Producer, Production Manager). www.megannand.com

Michael Aurelio (Daniel) CNP: Timboctu (Joey/Agent Walters).  Theatricum: Richard III (Ratcliff), Merry Wives of Winsor (Fenton). Boston Court:  Camino Real (Lord Byron, Dreamer, Casanova understudy). CalArts: Prairie Fire (ROLE). Film credits include: Dara Freidmans' Couples Improv, which will premier in April at The Hammer Museum, The Struggle Against Ourselves (REDCAT Video Gallery), David (Michael), Restrained (Edison).

Megan Barrett (Stage Manager) CalArts: Bright Now Beyond (SM), Taco Time (SM), The Portrait of a Lady (SM), Prairie Fire (ASM). Texas Shakespeare Festival: Blood Brothers (SM), The Merry Wives of Windsor (SM). Jenny Wiley Theatre: Annie (PSM), Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (PSM), Cinderella (PSM). Lamar University: The Rocky Horror Show (SM), Antigone (SM), A Doll’s House (SM), The Tempest (SM)

Evi Ellias (Scenic Designer) is a California based Production Designer and Artist, working largely in film, television, theater and immersive interactive environments and installations. Her work focuses on imagination and strives to create space for personal reflection through the communal activity of play. In 2012 her work on the film The Lepidoctor directed by Jon Barenboim was awarded - Best Production Design and Best Film at the L.A. Reel Film Festival. Ellias has shown and produced her work in Boston at the First Night Festival and Museum of Fine Arts, in San Francisco at The Green Festival, Goforaloop Gallery, Intersection for the Arts, SomArts and the Julia Morgan Theater, in Los Angeles at CalArts, the Disney Lund Theater and internationally as an invited artist in Mexico at the ComuArte Conference for International Women in Art and at the Prague Quadrennial among others. To view samples of her work please visit www.evitaz.com

Kate Fry (Costume Designer) CalArts: Purgatory in Ingolstadt, Itinerant Dance Orchestra, Prosper Springs, Inflated Ego. Highways: Lost in Lviv. Geffen Playhouse: The Excorcist (Costume Asst). Eugene O’Niel Theater: The Book of Mormon (Workshop Asst Designer & Shopper). American Place Theater: The Giver. Planet Connections Festival: Cake. Balloon Heaven: King Lear. Danish Royal Theatre: My Fair Lady. Film: Isla (Stylist), Miracle Maker, Pearl Was Here. 

Genevieve Gearhart (Nora) is an actor, director, dancer and choreographer who creates unforgettable theatrical moments in unexpected places.  She was born in Philadelphia, PA, grew up in the New York area, and currently resides in Los Angeles.  Genevieve’s work has been seen at REDCAT, the Ohio Theater, the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, the Williamstown Theater Festival, and several found spaces in Los Angeles and New York.  Genevieve has performed with the International Wow company in Reconstruction-directed by academy award nominee Josh Fox, a devised pieced that invited the audience onstage to discuss our nation’s housing crisis. Her most recent directorial work, The Weird Sisters, was an environmental witch centric adaptation of Macbeth.  Genevieve will be receiving a MFA in Acting from California Institute of the Arts and graduated with B.A. in Dance and Theater from Manhattanville College.  She is one of the founding members of Indivisible Rollercoaster and has worked with Mir Productions, Pig Brooch, New Georges, Irondale, The Mad Dog Experimental and International Wow.

Casey Jackson (Howard) CalArts: Time of Your Life (Nick), Jungle of Cities (Baboon), The Pillowman (Tupolski), Tall, Grande, Venti (Venti). Berkeley Repertory Theater, The McCarter Theater, The Shakespeare Theatre: Argonautika (Pollux, various). SF Playhouse: Den of Thieves (Paul Handleman), 3 Seconds in the Key (Player #3). Impact Theater: Othello (Iago), Macbeth (Banquo), Money and Run (Run). SF Shakespeare Festival Tour: Midsummer Night's Dream (Bottom & Lysander). Shakespeare Santa Cruz Tour: Macbeth (Macbeth).  

Raakhi Sinha Kapur (Production Manager) CalArts: TEDxCalarts (PM), Paradise (Producer), Machine Orchestra Presents Samsara (Writer, Choreographer, PM) Managers Gone Wild (Choreographer, Performer). South Asian Arts: Can't Believe it's not Butter Chicken (Producer), Bollywood Birthday Party (Writer, Choreographer, Performer), Vancouver 2010 Olympics (Performer, Choreographer, Artistic Consultant)

Jesse Mandapat (Sound Designer) CalArts: The Tempest (Asst. Sound Designer). Additional credits include: Reactor (Asst. Sound Designer), Annie (Audio Asst.), Making Paradise (Audio Asst.), Bukas (Audio Asst.), The Revenger’s Tragedy (Sound Operator). Composition credits: Diminished, December, Celestial Gaze, Pulse, Attraction.        

Jessica Reed (Mary) CalArts:  Dance the Fallen (Ma), House of Bernarda Alba (Adela), Depth of Black Arts (Various), Weird Sisters (Witch 3), Moth Opera (Chorus), PoLATT (Various)  Film: Two Bodies (Nadia), Afflicted (Sarah), Zindagi and the Zombies (Zindagi)

Maura Reinhart (Lighting Designer) CalArts: Margery & Me (LD), House of Bernarda Alba (ALD). Edinburgh Fringe/ CalArts: GODS (LD), Becoming Conocido (LD). Marat Daukayev School of Ballet: The Nutcracker (LD). LA Opera: Two Foscari, Don Giovanni, Madame Butterfly (Lighting Intern). National Tour: Bring It On: The Musical (Lighting Intern). Plaza de la Raza/ CAP: Lola in Lincolnlandia (LD). Insight Theater: She Loves Me (LD). Innervision Dance Theater: The Ties that Bind (LD).

Rachel Sherbill (Co-Producer) CalArts: Graduating Actor Showcase 2013 (Producer), Theater Portfolio Review 2012, A Splendid Death (Producer), Gregor's Big Red Balloon (Producer). Production Management Assistant: Aurora Productions, Summer Play Festival, The Public Theater's New York Shakespeare Festival. Dreamworks Animation: Dreamworks Dragons: Riders of Berk (Production Intern).  

Jocelynn Suarez (Laura) is an actress currently in her last semester studying towards a BFA in Acting at California Institute of the Arts. In 2012 she performed in PoLAAT with My Barbarian at REDCAT and Angel Fragments (dir. Samantha Shay) at Highways Performance Space in Santa Monica. Her classically based acting training began with her participation in Carnegie Mellon University’s Pre-College Acting program in 2008. Attending CalArts has furthered her concentration in new forms of theater and sparked a passion for dance/movement theater. Last summer she studied with Christopher Sivertsen, founder and director of the Awake Project, in Southern France at the Au Brana Cultural Centre. Projects coming in 2013 include another Amanda Jane Shank play (Untitled Anne Frank Project) directed by Fernando Belo, developing Library of Light directed by Samantha Shay and performing in a production of Richard II directed by Mary Lou Rosato premiering in Los Angeles. www.jocelynnsaurez.com 

Tom Watson (Technical Director) CalArts: Purgatorty in Ingolstadt (TD), The Firebugs (TD). Williamstown Theater Festival: 2011 Season (ATD). TheaterCNU: 3x3 (TD)

Julie Zajac (Lead Scenic Artist) CalArts:  The House of Bernarda Alba (Lead Scenic), Purgatory in Ingolstadt (Assistant Scenic), Wounded (Assistant Scenic). Television: CBS Survivor After Show (Painter), Brand X - Cycle 2 (Painter). Themed Entertainment: Knott's Berry Farm's Halloween Haun t(Scenic Artist). Music Theatre of Wichita: Finian's Rainbow (Charge Artist), Xanadu (Charge Artist)