A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum | 2016-2017 Season

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A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum

Oct 4 – Nov 6

Book by Burt Shevelove & Larry Gelbart
Music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Directed by Melissa Rain Anderson
Musical Direction by Don Kot |  Choreographed by Rommy Sandhu
Scenic Design by Adam Koch
Costume Design by Devon Painter
Lighting Design by Brian Lilienthal
Sound Design by Bart Fasbender
Dramaturgy by Jean Gordon Ryon

Stephen Sondheim’s Tony Award®-winning, rollicking romp is fast-paced, witty, irreverent and one of the funniest musical comedies ever written. Pseudolus, a crafty slave, will do anything to win his freedom, including trying to win the hand of the beautiful (but dim) courtesan-next-door for his young master. With hilarious twists and turns, mistaken identity, slamming doors (and a showgirl or two), Forum has “something for everyone, a comedy tonight!”

Running time: 2 hours, 20 minutes, including intermission.
Contains mature content and may not be suitable for children under 12.



Mark Bedard makes his Geva Theatre Center debut in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. Off-Broadway credits include A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Pearl Theatre and Fashions for Men at Mint Theater.  Regionally, Mr. Bedard was a seven-year company member of Oregon Shakespeare Festival and highlights include The Cocoanuts (his own adaptation); Animal Crackers; She Loves Me; The Servant of Two Masters; Paradise Lost; Love’s Labor’s Lost; The Merchant of Venice; The Comedy of Errors and The Taming of the Shrew.  Other regional credits include The Cocoanuts at the Guthrie Theater; As You Like It, Measure for Measure, The Winter’s Tale, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream for the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival; Cymbeline for the Shakespeare Theatre Company; Boeing, Boeing at Seattle Repertory; Waiting for Godot at the Marin Theatre; Love’s Labour’s Lost and Mother Courage for Shakespeare and Company and A Circus Christmas Carol for International City Theatre. Mr. Bedard trained at UC Irvine. www.markbedard.com



ANNA BUCCI is thrilled to be a part of such a wonderful production! A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum marks her debut performance at Geva Theatre Center. University of Northern Colorado 2015 grad. All my love to Mommy and Daddy. Thanks, Team Boals! 



LANI CORSON is so excited to make her Geva Theatre Center debut!  After receiving a B.F.A. in Musical Theatre from Syracuse University, she traveled the world performing in such shows as 42nd Street (International Tour), Legally Blonde (North Shore Music Theatre) and Les Misérables (Riverside Theatre), among others.  In her travels, she was introduced to aerial arts – an extension of dance with an element of excitement.  What began as a hobby quickly became a passion and as a founding member of 2 Ring Circus, she has been able to merge her loves of musical theatre and circus into one genre.  Thank you to Melissa for this opportunity and as always, all my love to Ken.



JOSHUA DEAN is jubilant to work at Geva Theatre Center for the first time and to collaborate once again with Melissa Rain Anderson.  He is the artistic director of 2 Ring Circus and co-owner of the circus school Aerial Arts NYC.  He is on faculty at Pace University where he teaches aerial arts.  Credits include Twyla Tharp’s The Times They Are A-Changin’ at the Old Globe, Carnival! at the Goodspeed Opera House,  The Tempest at Hartford Stage, Ghosts of Versailles at LA Opera and The Little Mermaid at Arkansas Rep, to name a few. 



NICOLE ERAS is thrilled to be returning to Geva where she previously appeared in Monty Python’s Spamalot! She currently is a senior at SUNY Geneseo, where she studies Psychology and Musical Theatre. Other favorite roles include Little Red in Into the Woods, Gertrude McFuzz in Seussical the Musical, and Mrs. Harcourt in Anything Goes. Thank you to Mark, Melissa, and Don for all they have done. Extra special thanks to: ILMD-D, MDB, and JDB. Love you all. 



BEN FRANKLIN is thrilled to return the Geva Theatre Center where he previously played Tiny Tom in Urinetown. Credits include The Ghost of Versailles with Patti LuPone (LA Opera), My Fair Lady with Kelsey Grammer and Kelli O’Hara and Babes in Toyland (Lincoln Center), the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz, Rum Tum Tugger in Cats, Lumiere in Beauty & The Beast, Will Parker in Oklahoma!, and many more. The theatre led him to the circus world and now, Mr. Franklin spends most of his time creating and performing with his company 2 Ring Circus, based in New York. Recently, they toured China and created the circus sequences for The Wizard of Oz at Fulton Theatre, The Ghosts of Versailles for LA Opera, The Little Mermaid at Arkansas Rep and the production you are seeing today.  Enjoy!


Geminae Twin

JESSICA MURPHY is thrilled to be making her Geva Theatre Center debut! She is currently a junior Musical Theatre major at SUNY Geneseo. At Geneseo, Ms. Murphy has had the privilege of performing roles such as Beth in Little Women, and Florinda in Into the Woods. She would like to thank her friends and family for their never-ending support and encouragement! 



ELYSE NIEDEREE is so excited to be making her Geva Theatre Center debut with this incredible cast, crew, and team of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. Recent credits include Legally Blonde and Hello, Dolly! at Sacramento Music Circus; West Side Story at Finger Lakes Musical Theater Festival; Chicago at North Shore Music Theater; The Producers at The Fulton Opera House and the national tour of Elf the Musical. Endless thanks to Melissa, Rommy, teachers, friends, family, MSA, Alex my love, and especially to my parents and my two brothers for their constant encouragement.


Marcus Lycus

BILL NOLTE makes his Geva Theatre Center debut in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. He just returned from the Cape Playhouse’s The Mousetrap (Major Metcalf) and Maine State Music Theatre’s Fiddler on the Roof (Tevye). Favorite roles include Tony in The Most Happy Fella at Goodspeed Opera (Connecticut Critics Circle Best Actor Award); Franz Liebkind in the Broadway, National Tour, Las Vegas and regional productions of The Producers; Horace Vandergelder in Hello, Dolly! at Music Theater of Wichita and Alfred Dolittle in My Fair Lady at Pittsburgh Public Theatre. On Broadway he has appeared in Cats (debut), The Secret Garden, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Amour, 1776, Jane Eyre, La Cage aux Folles, King David, A Christmas Carol and Me and My Girl. Mr. Nolte is an accomplished watercolor artist and a graduate of the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music.  


Geminae Twin/Dance Captain

DENNIS O’BANNION is thrilled to be making his Geva Theatre Center debut.  He was most recently seen touring around the country in the new production of The Little Mermaid.  Other recent credits include the Young Fool in Big River at Sacramento Music Circus and the Cowboy Quartet in the Maltz Jupiter Theatre’s production of The Will Rogers Follies.  He is also a Carbonell nominee for his performance as Marcellus Washburn (Best Supporting Actor) in The Music Man at the Maltz Jupiter Theatre.  On Broadway, he was in Irving Berlin’s White Christmas at the Marquis Theatre.  He’s worked at many regional theatres around the country including Paper Mill Playhouse, Theatre Under the Stars, KC Starlight and North Shore Music Theatre.  Thanks to my dear friend Rommy and Melissa for this great opportunity.  Thanks also to Bloc and my amazing family and friends.  For Tita Lena. 



MICHELE RAGUSA is thrilled to be returning to the Geva stage having appeared in Company. Broadway credits include Young Frankenstein (Elizabeth-succeeding Megan Mullaly); Urinetown (Penny); Ragtime (Evelyn Nesbit); A Class Act (Mona); Titanic; Cyrano. Other NYC credits include Titanic – The Anniversary Concert @Lincoln Center (Alice Beane); Disaster! (Jackie) at St. Marks; Craving For Travel at Playwrights Horizon; Adrift In Macao (Corinna) at Primary Stages (Lortel/Drama League nomination, Barrymore Award).  Regional credits include Hello, Dolly! (Dolly); The King and I (Anna); Thoroughly Modern Millie (Mrs. Meers); Cake Off (Rita); Gypsy (Rose); Mary Poppins (Winifred Banks); Monty Python’s Spamalot (Lady of the Lake); The Drowsy Chaperone (Chaperone); Sweeney Todd (Beggar Woman); Into The Woods (The Witch); Kiss Me, Kate (Kate); Boeing, Boeing (Gabriella); The Full Monty (Vickie); Singin’ in the Rain (Lina); Company (Sarah); Annie (Miss Hannigan); Bad Dates (Haley); She Loves Me (Amalia); Guys and Dolls (Adelaide), for which she won a Rabin Award; The World Goes Round; Noises Off (Belinda); Side by Side by Sondheim; Lend Me A Tenor (Maria); Me and My Girl (Jacquie); Nunsense (Sr. Amnesia); South Pacific (Nellie).  She also headlines with symphonies across the country.  www.micheleragusa.com



JAMES MICHAEL REILLY appeared previously at Geva Theatre Center as E.K. Hornbeck in Inherit the Wind, and has had the honor of teaching in Geva’s Summer Academy. Jim has appeared Off-Broadway, in the international tour of West Side Story, and in major roles at the Denver Center, the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, the Indiana Repertory Theatre, the Delaware Theatre Company, and many others. Favorite roles include Jaques in As You Like It, Amos Hart in Chicago, Editor Webb in Our Town, and Scapin in That Scoundrel Scapin. He has appeared on “Law & Order,” “The Blacklist,” “Person of Interest,” “Elementary,” The Onion News Network, and in many commercials. Jim and his wife Nancy are building one of the first green roof houses in New Jersey. He dedicates his performance to his friend Pete Fisher.



ROB RIORDAN recently graduated with a B.F.A. in Musical Theatre from the Webster Conservatory of Theatre Arts in St. Louis, Missouri. Favorite roles include Link in Hairspray at Hope Summer Rep, Hines in The Pajama Game at Webster Conservatory, Nikos in Big Love at Festival de Teatro de la Habana, Flotsam in The Little Mermaid for Variety Children’s Theatre, Will Parker in Oklahoma! at Grandstreet Theatre, and Varrius in Antony and Cleopatra for Shakespeare Festival St. Louis. He’s very excited and grateful to be doing his first Sondheim with such a fantastic company! Peace and love. 


Miles Gloriosus

TIM ROGAN makes his Geva Theatre Center debut in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. National tours include Camelot (Lancelot) and Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (Gaston) Regionally. Mr. Rogan has appeared in Thoroughly Modern Millie (Trevor Graydon), Billy Elliot (Tony Elliot), Rocky Horror Show (Brad Majors), Big Nate (Artur), Spring Awakening (Ensemble), The Fantasticks (El Gallo), Rocky Horror Show (Rocky), Grease (Danny Zuko), The Hollow (U/S), The Boy Detective Fails (U/S), Side by Side by Sondheim (U/S) and Sunset Boulevard (Ensemble) TV credits include “Younger” (Co-Star). Mr. Rogan holds a Bachelor of Music Degree from Catholic University.



STEVE ROSEN originated roles in the Broadway productions of Monty Python’s Spamalot, The Farnsworth Invention and the 2009 revival of Guys and Dolls. He co-created and co-starred in the long-running late night comedy-improv benefit Don’t Quit Your Night Job and the musical The Other Josh Cohen, for which he was nominated for six Drama Desk Awards, a Lucille Lortel Award and an Off-Broadway Alliance Award. He lost them all. The Other Josh Cohen also played the Paper Mill Playhouse last year. Other Off-Broadway: Peter & the Starcatcher, CQ/CX and Pretty Filthy (2015 Lortel Best Supporting Actor Nomination).  Regional credits include world premieres A Confederacy of Dunces starring Nick Offerman and Mr. Burns. TV credits include: “Law and Order: SVU,” “Nurse Jackie,” “The Good Wife,” “Masters of Sex,” “Psych,” “Elementary” and “Kings.” Film includes Woody Allen’s Café Society, Storytelling, Arthur. Mr. Rosen is a graduate of Pittsford Sutherland High School and is so grateful to finally be making his Geva debut. For my teachers.



JOHN SHUMAN makes his Geva Theatre Center debut in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. Broadway credits include the revival of La Cage Aux Folles and 13 Rue de l’Amour. Off-Broadway credits include The Dishwashers, The Fantasticks (revival), Hot l Baltimore, An Oak Tree and Moonchildren. Regionally, Mr. Shuman has appeared at the Guthrie Theater, Shakespeare Theatre, Yale Rep, Alley Theatre, Syracuse Stage, Bay Street, Portland Center Stage, Goodspeed Musicals (Pappy in L’il Abner) and Children’s Theatre Company (Mr. Popper in Mr. Popper’s Penguins), Film credits include Movie 43 and The Naked Man. Television credits include “Boardwalk Empire,” “Melrose Place,” “Love and War” and “Guiding Light.” A member of the Bread Loaf Acting Ensemble (Middlebury College), Mr. Shuman recently portrayed Vanya in Christopher Durang’s Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike and has performed in several productions of Underneath the Lintel by Glen Berger. His last Rochester appearance was as Ezekiel in the national tour of White Christmas at the Auditorium Theatre.



MACKENZIE WARREN is honored to make her Geva Theatre Center debut! She has appeared in the national tours of Pippin (swing, Fastrada u/s) and Anything Goes (Reno u/s). Other regional credits include The Producers; Camelot; Steam Heat; Kiss Me, Kate; Evita and Cinderella. Thankful for family and friends constant encouragement.  Psalm 16:11.



KENNETH ZIEGLER is thrilled to be working at Geva Theatre Center for this production of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum!  He has performed regionally with the McCarter Theater, Ogunquit Playhouse, and the Fulton Theater, has worked internationally with Tokyo Disneyland and Royal Caribbean, and can be seen in the movie Across the Universe directed by Julie Taymor.  As a founding member of 2 Ring Circus, he has finally made his parents proud by refusing to grow up. Many thanks to Ben and Joshua, and much love to Lani.



LARRY GELBART, a Chicago-born writer and producer who has achieved success for his work in radio, television, film and theater. He began his professional career in the late 1940s, before reaching the age of twenty, writing for such radio shows as The Eddie Cantor Show,” “The Maxwell House Coffee Time with Danny Thomas,” “Duffy’s Tavern,” “Command Performance,” “Jack Carter,” “The Jack Paar Show,” “The Joan Davis Show” and “The Bob Hope Show.” By the early 1950s he had begun writing for television, including “The All-Star Revue,” “The Red Buttons Show,” “Honestly,” “Celeste, “The Patrice Munsel Show,” “Caesar’s Hour” and “The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom”; his television work in the 1960s, ’70s, ’80s and ’90s includes “The Danny Kaye Show,” “The Marty Feldman Comedy Machine,” the long-running and hugely successful “M*A*S*H,” “Barbara Streisand… and Other Musical Instruments,” “Roll Out!,” and “Karen,” “AfterM*A*S*H” and the award-winning HBO television film, Barbarians at the Gate. In addition to A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum, his work for the theatre includes the plays My LA (1950), Sly Fox (1976) and Mastergate (1989); and the musicals The Conquering Hero (1960); One, Two, Three, Four, Five (1988) and City of Angels (1989; which won six 1990 Tony Awards, including Best Book of a Musical and Best Musical). His film work includes The Notorious Landlady, The Thrill of It All, The Wrong Box (co-written with Burt Shevelove), Not With My Wife, You Don’t, The Chastity Belt, A Fine Pair, Oh, God, Movie, Movie, Neighbors, Tootsie and Blame It on Rio.



BURT SHEVELOVE was born in Newark, New Jersey, graduated from Brown University and received a Master’s degree in theatre from Yale. While at Yale, he wrote lyrics for a musical version of Plautus’s Mostellaria and later became the resident director for the Yale Dramatic Association. After serving as an ambulance driver in World War II, he began a career as a writer, director and producer for radio and television, working with such stars as Judy Garland, Red Buttons, Jack Paar, Cyril Richard, Nancy Walker and Victor Borge; his work won him Emmy and Peabody Awards. His Broadway career began in 1948 with Small Wonder, a revue for which he wrote material, co-produced and directed. He also directed a revival of Kiss Me, Kate (1956); Hallelujah Baby! (1968); No, No, Nanette (1971; he also wrote the book); The Frogs (1974; written with Stephen Sondheim and performed in and around the Yale University pool) and Happy New Year (1980; he also wrote the book). He co-wrote the film, The Wrong Box, with Larry Gelbart. Burt Shevelove died in 1982.


Music and Lyrics

STEPHEN SONDHEIM wrote the music and lyrics for Saturday Night (1954), A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1962), Anyone Can Whistle (1964), Company (1970), Follies (1971), A Little Night Music (1973), The Frogs (1974), Pacific Overtures (1976), Sweeney Todd (1979), Merrily We Roll Along (1981), Sunday in the Park With George (1984), Into the Woods (1987), Assassins (1991), Passion (1994) and Road Show (2008) as well as lyrics for West Side Story (1957), Gypsy (1959) and Do I Hear a Waltz? (1965) and additional lyrics for Candide (1973). Anthologies of his work include Side By Side By Sondheim (1976), Marry Me a Little (1981), You’re Gonna Love Tomorrow (1983), Putting It Together (1993/99) and Sondheim On Sondheim (2010). He composed the scores of the films Stavisky (1974) and Reds (1981) and songs for Dick Tracy (1990) and the television production “Evening Primrose” (1966). His collected lyrics with attendant essays have been published in two volumes: Finishing the Hat (2010) and Look, I Made A Hat (2011). In 2010 the Broadway theatre formerly known as Henry Miller’s Theatre was renamed in his honor.



MELISSA RAIN ANDERSON returns to Geva Theatre Center, where she has appeared in numerous productions and directed the 2014 production of The 25th Annual Putman County Spelling Bee and last season’s production of Monty Python’s Spamalot. Ms. Anderson will also direct The Marvelous Wonderettes in the Fielding Stage later this season. Directing Credits: New York City; John and Jen for The Secret Theater.  Regional credits include The Cocoanuts at Utah Shakespeare Festival, Spamalot and The Little Mermaid for Arkansas Repertory Theatre; the Houston premiere of Next to Normal  (Houston Press Award Best Musical) as well as Five Course Love, the entire Wonderettes Series including the World Premiere of  The Marvelous Wonderettes: Dream On for Stages Repertory Theatre; Always….Patsy Cline for PCPA Theatrefest,  The Fantasticks and The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged) for the Great River Shakespeare Festival.  Upcoming projects include A Christmas Carol at The Denver Center Theater Company and The Little Mermaid at Cape Fear Regional. Ms. Anderson lives in New York City with her husband, actor Jim Poulos. Please visit melissarainanderson.com


Musical Director

DON KOT is Resident Music Director and Affiliate Artist at Geva Theatre Center where he celebrates his sixteenth season!  Geva productions include Little Shop of Horrors, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, All Your Questions Answered (world premiere), Next to NormalAvenue Q, CompanyThe Music ManFive Course LoveSweeney ToddCabaretUrinetownA Chorus LineCamelot1776A Christmas CarolSister’s Christmas Catechism, Convenience and as part of the Festival of New Plays, The Shaggs: Philosophy of the WorldOne For My Babyrightnextto me, Tomorrowland and An Evening with Mrs. Kasha Davis, International Celebrity Housewife.  He was also vocal coach and music arranger for The Odd Couple, Informed Consent, You Can’t Take It With You, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The House in Hydesville, Our Town, and Inherit the Wind.  Mr. Kot has performed Off-Broadway at the Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre at Pershing Square Signature Center, 45 Bleecker Street Theatre, Laurie Beechman Theatre, and at the Toronto Fringe Festival.  Other regional credits include The Music Man, The Best of Forbidden BroadwaySmokey Joe’s CaféLeader of the PackHonk!, and The Most Happy Fella.  National touring productions: Fosse, FootlooseFiddler on the RoofThe King and IMamma Mia and Hairspray.  Mr. Kot is the Coordinator of the Musical Theatre degree program at the State University of New York at Geneseo.



ROMMY SANDHU is excited to make his Geva Theatre Center debut with A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. He most recently choreographed The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Tuacahn). In addition, Mary Poppins, Sister Act, Ragtime, The Pajama Game and Singing in the Rain. In New York, he has directed and/or choreographed several Broadway Cares Benefits (Minskoff Theater NY), How Now Dow Jones and Dancebreak. As Associate, Denver Center’s The Unsinkable Molly Brown (Dir. Kathleen Marshall), Little Shop of Horrors (w/ Ellen Greene and Jake Gyllenhaal, Dir. Dick Scanlan), Bells are Ringing, Applause (NY’s City Center), The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (Broadway). As a performer on Broadway, Mr. Sandhu has appeared in Mary Poppins, Zorba, Bombay Dreams, Oklahoma!, On The Town, The Life, Sweet Charity (Concert), A Christmas Carol, Annie Get Your Gun and nationally in Carousel; Kiss Me, Kate; Evita and Dreamgirls (w/ Jennifer Holliday). On Television in “SMASH,” “The Tony Awards,” “Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade,” “The Today Show,” “Live with Regis and Kelly” and “The View.” Mr. Sandhu is on faculty at Marymount Manhattan College’s Musical Theatre Department, Broadway Dance Center (NYC) and ONSTAGE New York. Proud father of three and husband to one. www.RommySandhu.com twitter: @newrom


Scenic Designer

ADAM KOCH returns to Geva where he previously designed A Christmas Carol, Five Course Love and Sweeney Todd. Credits across the nation, include the landmark outdoor productions of Miss Saigon and Carousel (Serenbe Playhouse); Sister Act, Saturday Night Fever, and the regional premiere of The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Ogunquit Playhouse); the seven-year smash hit Chicago production of Million Dollar Quartet (Apollo Theatre); Hello, Dolly! (Ford’s Theater); Miss SaigonDreamgirls, See What I Wanna See, Kiss of the Spiderwoman (2008 Helen Hayes nomination) (Signature Theatre); Dreamgirls, Big FishA Little Night Music, TarzanBye Bye Birdie (Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma); Hairspray, Baskerville (Syracuse Stage); Bat Boy (1st Stage, 2015 Helen Hayes nomination); Off-Broadway credits include Rooms: A Rock Romance, Loaded, We the People, Pinkalicious, Freckleface Strawberry. Mr. Koch trained at Carnegie Mellon University


Costume Design

DEVON PAINTER returns to Geva Theatre Center to work with the incredible artists here. Previous Geva credits include Good PeoplePump Boys and DinettesA Christmas Carol, Five Course Love and Sweeney Todd.  Ms. Painter lives in New York and designs costumes throughout the United Statesmost recently Seascape at American Players Theatre in Spring Green, WI.  New York credits include shows for Juilliard, The Ensemble Studio Theatre, The Culture Project, and many, many productions at The Pearl Theatre Company, as well as assisting on Broadway.  Regional theatre credits feature designs for the Guthrie Theater (Stage Kiss, Shadowlands, Private Lives, Death of A Salesman), the Denver Center, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Indiana Repertory Theatre, Delaware Theatre Company, Trinity Repertory Theatre, Virginia Stage Company, the Folger Theatre and the Studio Theatre in Washington DC, Anchorage Opera, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, Shakespeare Festival of St. Louis, Great Lakes Theater Festival, the Utah Shakespearean Festival, the Contemporary American Theater Festival, and Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Her design work was exhibited in Curtain Call; Celebrating a Century of Women Designing for Live Performance. Ms. Painter is a member of United Scenic Artists.


Lighting Design

BRIAN J. LILIENTHAL returns to Geva Theatre Center where he previously designed Monty Python’s Spamalot!, Women in Jeopardy, Little Shop of Horrors, Informed Consent, The 39 Steps and The Book Club Play.  Regionally he has designed over 250 productions for Huntington Theatre, Arizona Theatre Co, Milwaukee Rep, Cleveland Play House, Pasadena Playhouse, South Coast Rep, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Merrimack Rep, Arden Theatre, Trinity Rep, among many.  Mr. Lilienthal has designed operas for Long Beach Opera, Bard Summerscape, Portland Opera Repertory Theatre.  He has won the Los Angeles Ovation Award for lighting design, and has been nominated multiple times for Boston’s IRNE Award.  He has spent nine summers as the resident lighting designer for the National Playwrights Conference at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center.  He received his M.F.A. at California Institute of the Arts.  Mr. Lilienthal currently teaches lighting design at Tufts University, and is a member of the newly formed Patriots Program at Merrimack Rep in Lowell, MA.  He lives in Somerville, MA, and is a drummer with a rockabilly trio that performs throughout New England.


Sound Designer

BART FASBENDER is a composer/sound designer from New York City and made his Geva debut last season with The May Queen. His credits include Alex Timbers’ Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson on Broadway; Neil LaBute’s The Way We Get By and Paul Weitz’s Lonely, I’m Not at Second Stage; Tanya Barfield’s Bright Half Life for Women’s Project; John Patrick Shanley’s Storefront Church dir. by Mr. Shanley at Atlantic Theater; Neil LaBute’s All The Ways To Say I Love You at MCC; The Long Shrift at Rattlestick dir. by James Franco; Jesse Eisenberg’s The Revisionist and Ascuncion dir. by Kip Fagan at Cherry Lane; A.R. Gurney’s Family Furniture, directed by Thomas Kail at The Flea Theater; A Month in the Country for director Erica Schmidt at Classic Stage Company. Other designs and compositions off-Broadway for The Play Company, Playwrights Horizons, Lincoln Center, Primary Stages, The Public, Manhattan Theater Club, BAM, The New Group, Naked Angels, Ars Nova and many more. Regionally he’s designed at the Guthrie, Mark Taper Forum, American Conservatory Theater, The Old Globe, Philadelphia Theater Company, Williamstown, NY Stage & Film, Seattle Rep, Two River Theater and many others. Proud member of United Scenic Artists 829 and Theatrical Sound Designers and Composers Association.



JEAN GORDON RYON serves as New Plays Coordinator at Geva Theatre Center where, among other duties, she produces the Regional Writers Showcase and the Young Writers Showcase. She was dramaturg for 1776, John Bull’s Other Island, That Was Then, Shear Madness, The Underpants, The Clean House, Almost Maine, The Music Man, Company, Perfect Wedding, The 39 Steps, Last Gas, Wait Until Dark, Little Shop of Horrors and Geva’s current production of A Christmas Carol, and she has contributed dramaturgical research and written program articles for several other productions. Ms. Ryon holds a degree in drama from Tufts University and a master’s degree in Arts Administration from Goucher College. Her most recent directing credits in the community include Grace and Glorie, Master Class, Blithe Spirit, Pride’s Crossing, and The Gin Game for Blackfriars; The Chosen and The Immigrant for JCC’s CenterStage; Juno and the Peacock, Da, Translations, Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me, Waiting for Godot, The Kings of the Kilburn High Road, Dancing at Lughnasa, Faith Healer, The Hostage, Love in the Title, The Cripple of Inishmaan, Dublin Carol, and A Moon for the Misbegotten for RCP’s Irish Players; and Romeo and Juliet and Much Ado About Nothing for RCP’s Shakespeare Players. Ms. Ryon is also the Artistic Director of The Geriactors, a traveling troupe of mature actors. 


Stage Manager

JENN LYONS is a Rochester native happy to be working at Geva. Previous shows at Geva include A Moon for the Misbegotten, Miracle on South Division Street, Red, The Mountaintop, Little Shop of Horrors, The Odd Couple and Clybourne Park.  National Tours include Mary Poppins, The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella (starring Eartha Kitt), Showboat and The Who’s Tommy. New York credits include work at Roundabout Theatre and Circle Repertory Theater as well as the Broadway production of The Little Mermaid.  Her two favorite productions are Maddie and Jack.



ELISSA MYERS CASTING, Paul Fouquet, CSA, a Rochester native, is honored to be recognized as a Geva Affiliate Artist. This marks the 19th year of Myers’ and Fouquet’s collaboration with Geva Theatre Center. Casting credits include “Poisoner’s Handbook,” “Becoming Helen Keller,” and the mini-series “Mystery of Matter” for PBS. Other PBS projects include “The Abolitionists,” “Dolly Madison,” “Alexander Hamilton,” “John and Abigail Adams,” “Benjamin Franklin” (Emmy Award), “Liberty” (Peabody Award), “God in America,” “People vs. Leo Frank,” “Louisa May Alcott,” as well as PBS “Great Performances” (Artios Award in “Outstanding Achievement in Casting”) and most recently “Murder Of A President” for American Experience. Additionally three “Movies of the Week,” as well as five pilots. Feature films include “Hank and Asha” (Audience Award at Slamdance 2013 and five other festival awards), and “The Union.” Theatre includes seven Broadway shows, including Tony-nominated Having Our Say, as well as 26 Off-Broadway shows. Regional theatre casting in the past two years includes Denver Center, Geva Theatre Center, Cleveland Play House, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Magic Theatre, Arena Stage, Alley Theatre, George Street Playhouse, and Arizona Theatre Company. The office has so far received 16 nominations and has won three Artios Awards for “Outstanding Achievement in Casting.”