Actors’ Equity Association (AEA) was founded in 1913 as the first of the American actor unions. Equity’s mission is to advance, promote, and foster the art of live theatre as an essential component of our society. Today, Equity represents more than 40,000 actors, singers, dancers, and stage managers working in hundreds of theatres across the United States. Equity members are dedicated to working in the theatre as a profession, upholding the highest artistic standards. Equity negotiates wages and working conditions and provides a wide range of benefits, including health and pension plans for its members. Through its agreement with Equity, Tennessee Shakespeare Company has committed to the fair treatment of the actors and stage managers employed in this production. AEA is a member of the AFL-CIO and is affiliated with FIA, an international organization of performing arts unions. For more information, visit www.actorsequity.org.
E. Frank Bluestein (Executive Director) is the 1996-1997 Disney National Performing Arts Teacher of the Year and the 1994 Tennessee Teacher of the Year. In October of 1998, USA Today named Frank as one of the top 40 teachers in the United States. He is a past winner of the American Theatre Association's John C. Barner Award, a national award given to one secondary school teacher whose theatre program is judged most exemplary for the year. He has served as an arts advisory panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts, the College Board Arts Advisory Committee, the Council of Chief State School Officers, and the Tennessee Arts Commission. Frank is a former president both of the Tennessee Alliance for Arts Education and the Germantown Arts Alliance. Each summer he assumes the role of managing director of the Tennessee Arts Academy, a nationally-recognized statewide teacher training institute located in Nashville, TN. He has twice been named to Memphis Magazine's “Who's Who in Memphis” poll, and was presented a community service award for his accomplishments in education by the National Conference of Christians and Jews. At Germantown High School, which he retired from in 2013, Frank served as the chairman of the school's Fine Arts Department. He was the founder and director of the school's theatre, the Poplar Pike Playhouse, and also served as executive producer for Germantown Community Television (GHS-TV), the school's three-million-dollar educational television facility. In 1984 he helped the Germantown High School Fine Arts Department become one of eight secondary schools in the nation to be chosen to receive the Rockefeller Brothers Fun Arts in Education Award. Under Frank's leadership, Germantown Community Television received over 125 first place Hometown Video USA awards for its programming and was named ten times by the Alliance for Community Media as the Best Community Access Station in the USA. The station has been recognized with regional Emmy and Cable Ace Award nominations. Frank also participated in the educational programs of the National Television Academy of Arts and Sciences and led his team of teachers and scores of students to win two national student Emmys for sports (2004) and writing (2007) as well as 28 regional first-place student Emmy awards. He has served as a director of shows at Opryland, USA, and most recently wrote and directed the national touring production of Beale Street Saturday Night starring blues legend, Joyce Cobb. He is a frequent speaker and writer on arts-related issues.
Catie Broadwater (Stage Manager) returns for her third season with Tennessee Shakespeare Company. Her TSC credits include Hamlet, It’s a Wonderful Life: a Live Radio Play, Complete Works of Shakespeare (abridged), Macbeth, Southern Yuletide, the schools tour of Romeo and Juliet, The Tempest, and The Glass Menagerie. Catie comes from Nashville, where she works as a Stage Manager. A few of her theatre credits include Southern Production's The Nutty Professor; Studio Tenn's The Glass Menagerie; Chaffin's Barn Dinner Theatre's Sherlock Holmes and It's a Wonderful Wife; 3Ps Production’s John & Jen and Long Way Down, Parallel Lives, Oklahoma, Ramona Quimby, Baby, Spirit: The Authentic Story of the Bell Witch of Tennessee; and Nashville Shakespeare Festival's The Tempest. She is a graduate from MTSU, where she received a Bachelor of Science degree in Theatre.
Bruce Bui (Costume Designer) is very excited to be a part of Tennessee Shakespeare’s sixth season. He designed TSC’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Julius Caesar, Othello, Romeo and Juliet, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), It’s a Wonderful Life: a Live Radio Play, Rebel Shakespeare and His Women, Shakespeare’s Greatest Hits, and Hamlet. Originally from Southern California, Bruce now lives in Memphis and is going into his twelfth season as the Wardrobe Director and Resident Costume Designer for Ballet Memphis. His works can be seen regularly on the Orpheum stage and numerous other venues around the Mid-South, and have been praised as “dazzling” by Critical Dance Magazine, and a “Master of Chiffon” by The Commercial Appeal. He has also worked with The Western Stage (Always, Patsy Cline), Cabrillo Musical Theatre (Funny Girl), Santa Susanna Repertory Theatre (Shiloh, War of the World), and Kingsmen Shakespeare Company (As You Like It), among others. Some of his specialty garments can be seen on Mrs. Tennessee for Mrs. America 2005, At Home Tennessee Magazine’s featured wedding issue 2007, and The Memphis Mystic Krew 2005 court. Bruce also has worked on several commercials in the Mid-South. When not working behind the scenes, Bruce enjoys acting on stage, and has been in numerous productions with Emerald Theatre Company. Bruce would like to thank his hard-working staff for their dedication and talent.
Shaleen Cholera (Company and Box Office Manager) is excited to be involved in his fourth season with TSC. Previous TSC credits: Othello (Gratiano), Macbeth (Lennox/Bloody Captain), The Tempest (Boatswain), A Southern Yuletide (Musician/Ensemble), and Romeo and Juliet (Benvolio/Paris). Other Memphis credits include: Twelfth Night (Duke Orsino) and A Midsummer Night's Dream (Lysander/Francis Flute). Shaleen has a BA in Theatre Arts from Sewanee: The University of The South, and studied at Michael Howard Studios and the Living Theatre, both in New York City. Shaleen would like to give many thanks to his family, friends, teachers, and mentors.
Lorraine Cotten (Lana Sherwood) is thrilled to be a part of this production once again! Most recently, she appeared in the ensemble Les Miserables at Playhouse on the Square. She was also seen as Claire Partridge in Left Hand Singing at Theatreworks and as Pauline in Dividing the Estate at Circuit. Before receiving her MFA in Theatre (Directing) at the U of M, she lived in New York and Los Angeles and was fortunate to work in such theatres as Perry Steet (Off Broadway), Tiffany Theatre (LA), the Barter Theatre, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, the New Jersey Shakespeare Theatre, and Arkansas Rep, among others, as well as in film and television. For the past 14 years, she has mostly been a mom and wife and has worked as a director and teacher at local high schools and theatres. Directing credits include: Big River at The Harrell, and The Wizard of Oz and Beauty and the Beast at ECS. You also may have seen her playing a middle-aged wife in recent commercials. Lorraine would like to thank Chris, Katy, and James for being patient with her as she does what she loves.
Jim Eikner (Harry “Jazzbo” Heywood) is a native Memphian, who attributes any success he has enjoyed in emceeing, television hosting, and acting to the remarkable Freda Kenner, his speech and drama teacher at Messick High School. Earlier this year, he portrayed Norman Thayer, Jr. in the Germantown Community Theatre production of On Golden Pond. He has performed the title roles in Da and The Foreigner, as well as Ensign Pulver in Mister Roberts, Judge Turpin in Sweeney Todd, and is pleased to reprise from last year his role of Guardian Angel Clarence Oddbody with TSC. Jim has served as Marketing Manager for WKNO-TV and FM for over 26 years and dedicates his performance to his family, among whom there are many stage credits, including those of his talented grandchildren. After this repeat run as an Angel Second Class, Jim is considering opening a chain of eateries, “Clarence’s Hot Wings.”
Amelia Fischer (Sally Applewhite) hails from Washington, DC, and is thrilled to be returning to TSC for her third season. Audiences in Memphis have seen her in It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play, Shakespeare’s Greatest Hits, Hamlet, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), and The Tempest. Regional credits include: Hamlet, Othello, Comedy of Errors, and Taming of the Shrew with Houston Shakespeare Festival; As You Like It with Virginia Shakespeare Festival; Pericles and The Servant of Two Masters with Georgia Shakespeare. Amelia is proud to have received her MFA from the University of Houston PATP, her BA from Coastal Carolina University, and to have trained with the Gainesville Theatre Alliance.
Jeremy Allen Fisher (Lighting Designer) is the Resident Lighting Designer for Theatre Memphis and a graduate of Oklahoma City University with a BFA in Lighting Design. He has worked for Santa Fe Opera, Busch Gardens, Oklahoma Shakespeare in the Park, and Northern Oklahoma College. Jeremy was recently nominated for an Ostrander Award for best lighting design, Chicago, the Musical at Theatre Memphis, and placed first runner-up for the National Barbizon Lighting Award (2011) for his lighting design of A Streetcar Named Desire. He would like to thank his fiancée, friends, family, mentors and colleagues.
Logan Foy (Assistant Stage Manager) is a native of Memphis and a graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi, where he majored in Theatre. He recently worked as a technical theatre intern at the Jefferson Performing Arts Society in the New Orleans area where he served as master electrician for the 35th Season. He designed the lighting for numerous JPAS shows, including Bye Bye Birdie, The Music Man Jr., and Driving Miss Daisy among others. He is very excited to be working with Tennessee Shakespeare Company and hopes to make this a long-standing friendship.
Neil Freeman (Text Consultant) is a teacher, director, text coach, and actor. He is the man behind the acclaimed First Folio editions published by Applause and utilized across the globe. Currently Associate Professor Emeritus (of Theatre) at the University of British Columbia in Canada, he is also a Master Teacher with Shakespeare & Company in Lenox, and Text Consultant to several other U.S. and Canadian theatres. His range of teaching, coaching, and directing ranges from the fifteen-year-olds in youth companies to high school teachers, through university level students (undergraduate and graduate in both liberal arts and the top-ranked professional training schools) to professional theatre companies and individual actors.
Barry Gilmore (Music Arranger; Guitar/Percussion/Hammered Dulcimer) is the Middle School Head at Hutchison School. In addition to performing in the Celtic ensemble Planet Reel on guitar, hammered dulcimer, and other traditional instruments, he and his wife Susanna arranged, composed, and performed music for TSC's productions of As You Like It and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Before entering administration, Barry was an English teacher for nearly twenty years. He served as president of the Tennessee Council of Teachers of English and has won awards for teaching from the National Council of Teachers of English, the Tennessee Holocaust Commission, and was named a Star American Teacher by the U.S. Department of Education. He is also the author of seven books for teachers and students.
Susanna Perry Gilmore (Music Arranger; Violin) is a founding member of TSC, having composed, arranged, and performed music for As You Like It and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. She joined the Omaha Symphony in 2011 as concertmaster, a position she previously held for fifteen years with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra. In addition to her orchestral role, Susanna enjoys a multifaceted career as a solo artist and chamber musician in performances across the nation. She has frequently been heard on National Public Radio in chamber ensembles on shows such as Performance Today, A Prairie Home Companion, and America’s Music Festivals. She was twice named Premier String Player by the regional chapter of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, served as Distinguished Adjunct Professor of Violin at the University of Memphis, and has served as the Valade Violin Fellow at the Interlochen Summer Arts Program for the past six years. She has also taught and performed at the Sewanee Summer Music Festival, the Hot Springs Music Festival, and the Grand Canyon Music Festival, and was a fellow at the Tanglewood and Norfolk Music Festivals. Susanna played a fundamental role in creating and directing a new music series for the Memphis Symphony, Opus One, which garnered national attention for its creative collaborations between symphony ensembles and jazz, rock, folk, blues, and hip-hop artists from the Memphis community. She also recently appeared in both dramatic and musical roles in the film, Narcissus, filmed on location in Lithuania. Susanna earned her Bachelor’s degree in music from Oxford University, England. As a post-graduate, she spent a year in the Advanced Solo Studies Program at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, where she studied with violinist Yfrah Neaman; she then received her Master’s degree in Violin Performance from New England Conservatory in Boston under the instruction of James Buswell. Prior to her studies in England, Ms. Gilmore studied with Christian Teal at the Blair School of Music and Mimi Zweig at Indiana University. When not working as a classical violinist, Susanna plays Irish fiddle and spends time with her two daughters Katy and Zoe, her husband Barry, and her dog Heidi.
Kristen Greene (Properties Designer) is excited to be involved in her third season with TSC. Previously, she has worked on The Tempest, The Glass Menagerie, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), and It’s a Wonderful Life. Kristen is currently the stage manager and production coordinator for Ballet Memphis. She has a BFA in stage management from Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, and she also studied at Shakespeare’s Globe in London. Love and thanks to her parents and fiancé, Jeremy.
Brad Kroeker (Freddie Filmore) appeared in TSC’s 2012 production of It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play. He also recently appeared as guest grill chef on WKNO’s “Local Color” and as John Christow in Agatha Christie’s The Hollow. Other recent Memphis credits: Opera Memphis’ Macbeth, and Frederick in A Little Night Music and El Gallo in The Fantasticks. Brad has been the fight choreographer with Opera Memphis and other theatrical productions (Ostrander winner for Rhodes College’s Hamlet) and is the Memphis University School varsity fencing coach (2012 State Champions). A native Nebraskan and graduate of The University of Nebraska, Brad also has served on the faculty of The University of Memphis and Rhodes College. Currently with FedEx Express, Brad specializes in training design projects. But really, he lives to cook and eat!
Slade Kyle (Education Manager/Resident Artist) as a founding member and former SEWA Professional Wrestler is well versed in many forms of Stage Combat, and serves as TSC’s resident Fight Director. TSC credits: Hamlet (Prelude Scene Director), Complete Works (abridged) (Prelude Scene Director), Shakespeare’s Greatest Hits (Fight Director), The Glass Menagerie (Tom), The Tempest (Fight Director, Prelude Scene Director), Romeo and Juliet Schools Tour (Friar Lawrence/Mercutio/Peter/Abram, Fight Director), Macbeth (Malcolm, Fight Director), Romeo and Juliet (Mercutio/Prince/Gregory/Friar John, Fight Director, Prelude Scene Director), Themes From a Midsummer Night with IRIS Orchestra (Puck), Othello (Fight Director, Prelude Scene Director), Julius Caesar (Prelude Scene Director), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Puck, Fight Director), As You Like It (Oliver, Fight Choreographer). Slade graduated Summa Cum Laude with a BFA from University of Memphis, focusing in Physical Theatre and Pedagogy.
Joe Landry (Playwright) At age 12, Joe's first job was in the film department at the library in his hometown of Fairfield, CT. This was before the dawn of home video, back in the days of 16mm, and their permanent collection included It's a Wonderful Life, The Lady Vanishes, and other early Hitchcock films. Joe's other main interest was the theatre. Encouraged by his parents, Joe was introduced to various theatres which he came to call home, including Playwrights Horizons and Roundabout Theatre Company in New York, Westport Country Playhouse, and others. In 1995, Joe founded Second Guess Theatre Company, which produced over two dozen new plays, adaptations, and revivals to critical-acclaim. In 1997, It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play premiered in Stamford, CT, and has since enjoyed productions around the country. Joe's other plays include Vintage Hitchcock: A Live Radio Play and an adaptation of the cult classic Reefer Madness. Other projects include Mothers and Sons, a musical co-written with Kevin Connors and Lifeboat, Dahling! with Bert Bernardi.
Mark Marchan (Assistant Master Electrician) is a home-schooled junior and lighting design intern at Theatre Memphis. This past summer, he attended Governor School for the Arts for Lighting Design. Technical credits: Lighting Designer - Chicago (Cordova High School, High School Musical nomination for Best Lighting Design); Assistant Lighting Designer - Altar Boyz, A Chorus Line, Singing In the Rain (Theatre Memphis); Master Electrician - Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (The Kroc Center); Stage Manager - Last Five Years (Germantown Community Theatre.) Next, Mark plants to pursue a major in Lighting Design at either Oklahoma City University or University of Texas, Austin. Apart from theatre, Mark enjoys Karate, MMA, disc golf, ultimate Frisbee, and archery.
Dan McCleary (Founder and Producing Artistic Director; Actor/Director of Unto the Breach and The Taming of the Shrew) is a native Memphian and a graduate of Germantown High School and its Poplar Pike Playhouse. Dan directed and acted in TSC’s inaugural production of As You Like It (Jaques) and The Glass Menagerie; and he directed TSC’s acclaimed Hamlet, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), The Tempest, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, all-female Julius Caesar, Othello, and Themes from a Midsummer Night. He also has directed productions of As You Like It at Orlando Shakespeare Theater, The Servant of Two Masters outdoors in downtown Atlanta and at Seattle Shakespeare Company, and All’s Well That Ends Well at Georgia Shakespeare Festival. At the Orlando Shakespeare Theatre, he directed the world premiere of The Stone Face and played the title roles in Antony and Cleopatra and Richard III, Brutus in Julius Caesar, Porfiry in Crime and Punishment, Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew, and Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor. As Associate Artistic Director at Shakespeare & Company in the Berkshires, Dan acted in and directed over 30 productions, appearing as Coriolanus, Macbeth, Herman Melville, Stephano, Don Armado, Hotspur, Master Ford, Bertram, and Antipholus/Dromio of Ephesus. He directed S&Co’s first production of The Servant of Two Masters, also his own adaptation of Anaïs Nin’s Henry & June, Vita & Virginia, My Own Stranger, and The Fiery Rain. Other Regional/New York theatre: Merrimack Rep, North Shore Music Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, StageWest, Alabama Shakespeare, Arden Theatre, Studio 4-A, and Huntington Theatre. Dan is a published poet and teaches Shakespeare master classes around the country. Memphis Magazine has named him among the “Who’s Who in Memphis” each year from 2009-12, and the Germantown Arts Alliance honored him with its 2009 Distinguished Arts and Humanities Medal for Performing Arts. He serves on the City of Germantown’s Telecommunications Committee, and holds a B.A. in Advertising and Journalism from Temple University. Dan and his wife Stephanie are the proud parents of three-year-old twin boys, Sullivan and Collins.
Cara McHugh (Journeyman Artist-Manager) is originally from Memphis and received her Bachelor of Arts from Murray State University with a dual major in Theatre and Political Science. Cara then enrolled in the Masters of Fine Arts in Performance program at the University of Louisville, where she graduated in May with a Dean’s Citation in Academic Excellence. Cara performed in UofL's Sleep Rock thy Brain, The Artifacts, Richard III, Plays: A Play, A Perfect Wedding, and How I Learned to Drive. She also performed in Reasons to Be Pretty and Misses Strata at the Bard’s Town Theatre in Louisville, KY, where she served as a Board member. While in Louisville, Cara taught children’s theatre for Encore Youth Theatre and Adelante Hispanic Achievers. Cara is thrilled to be joining TSC to both teach and perform Shakespeare’s works.
Trevor Pittinger (Jake Laurents) comes from New York City and is overjoyed to be returning to TSC and It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play. Last season, he also appeared in Hamlet and Shakespeare’s Greatest Hits. Regional credits include: Romeo and Juliet at Greenbrier Valley Theater, Much Ado About Nothing with Palo Duro Shakespeare, two years in HYPE at the Alley Theater, The Dispute with Theatre Collide, and two years in the outdoor drama TEXAS! Film credits include: Child of God (dir. James Franco). Trevor received his MFA in acting from the University of Houston School of Theatre & Dance, his BA from Rice University, and trained at the O'Neill National Theater Institute.
William Shakespeare (Playwright) was probably a lot like you, regardless of your age. He was also a Revolutionary. He was born into an Age of alarming innovation and discovery in every field of study: voyage, religion, printing, science, commerce, history, disaster, and triumph. Just like you. There was revolution all around him. William was born into an Age of religious ambivalence, often with accompanying violence, and he received the usual education for a boy of the Age until he is 12 years old. He married an older woman, perhaps because they were pregnant first. And there are two periods in his early adult life that we know very little about. When he emerges in documentation, he is a player and a writer. But he doesn’t write like the others around him. He writes, using known stories, through the rhythm of his heart. You can hear it in his verse lines. He began to write his life into his plays: when his son Hamnet and father die, there is Hamlet; after his mother dies and England’s riots create domestic war, there is Coriolanus; after he falls in love with a dark-haired woman in the city, there are the Sonnets to his Dark Lady and all of his Rosalinds in As You Like It and Romeo and Juliet and Love’s Labor’s Lost; and when his daughters come of age, there are his final plays in which the daughters redeem their fathers. It is said he created the human being, which is to say he developed characters on stage with psychological underpinnings and fragile grace resulting in landmark joys or the end of lives. Like a genuine poet, he forces no answers upon us. He lends us timeless questions. William was a Revolutionary because he dared to question his life in a public forum. He discovered that which is most personal is shared by us all. It is collectively held and needs to be articulated and felt. In so doing, he redefined the function of theatre. His Age compelled and inspired him, just as our own Age can do for us.
(General Manager and Education Director; Actor/Arranger of Unto the Breach; Creator/Director of Shake(s), Rattle & Roll; Director of It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play and Romeo and Juliet) TSC directorial work includes It’s a Wonderful Life: a Live Radio Play, Shakespeare’s Greatest Hits, Southern Yuletide, Romeo and Juliet, and The Rebel Shakespeare and His Women. During her 18 years with Seattle Shakespeare Company, 13 as Artistic Director, she directed 17 productions, including The Threepenny Opera, Cyrano de Bergerac, and the lauded all-male Taming of the Shrew. A well-known actress in the Northwest, Stephanie has performed for Seattle Repertory Theatre, Seattle Shakespeare Company, ACT, The Empty Space, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Book-It Repertory Theatre, and Tacoma Actors Guild. Regionally, she appeared with the Oregon and New Jersey Shakespeare Festivals, Houston’s Alley Theatre, Arizona Theatre Company, and NYC’s Theatre for a New Audience. Her Shakespeare roles include Juliet, Rosalind, Lady Macbeth, Beatrice, Regan, Feste, Kate, Bianca, Dionyza, The Princess of France, Hero, Perdita, The Chorus in Henry V, and most recently Gertrude in TSC's Hamlet. Stephanie is the lucky mother of Conor, Cahilan, Sullivan, and Collins.
Nancy Wright (Bookkeeper) has provided bookkeeping services for small businesses in both the private and public arena for over 20 years. She obtained her B.S. from U.T. Knoxville.