CAST & CREATIVE

cast

JAKE EPSTEIN (Ben) recently finished a year on Broadway originating the role of Gerry Goffin in the Tony-nominated, Grammy-winning Beautiful: The Carole King Musical. Prior to that he starred as Peter Parker/Spider-Man in Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark. On television, he is best known for playing Craig Manning on “Degrassi,” which earned him a Gemini Award. His other major stage work includes first national tours of Spring Awakening (Melchior), Green Day’s American Idiot (Will) and Billy Elliot (Tony). He can be seen in the upcoming films Borealis and Fourth Man Out. A graduate of The National Theatre School of Canada, Jake is proud to have co-written his first play, Therefore Choose Life, which debuted in Toronto with The Harold Green Jewish Theatre. All my love and thanks to Mom, Dad, Gubs, Ness, Joannie and Shari.

JENNA GAVIGAN (Emily). Broadway: Gypsy starring Bernadette Peters, directed by Sam Mendes. Los Angeles: Come Back, Little Sheba opposite S. Epatha Merkerson (Center Theatre Group, The Kirk Douglas Theatre). Film: Deliver Us From Evil, Terri, A Single Man, Easier With Practice, Kinsey. TV: “The Knick,” “Gotham,” “Blue Bloods,” “House of Cards,” “Medium,” “CSI: Miami,” “NCIS,” “Numb3ers,” “Criminal Minds,” “Cold Case,” “Without a Trace,” “Rescue Me,” “Law & Order: SVU” and recurring roles on “The Good Wife,” “Boardwalk Empire” and “Commander-in-Chief.” A New York native, Jenna holds a B.A. in Creative Writing from Columbia University.

THOMAS SULLIVAN (Chris) is very excited to be making his Off-Broadway debut in Straight. A recent graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, he received his acting training from the Atlantic Acting School. Los Angeles-born and raised. Recent theatre credits include Cowboy Mouth (Young Artists at the Chelsea), Die Kleinen (Access Theatre), The Mormon Bird Play (NY Fringe). Recent film credits include Labrador (Lance Edmands).

SCOTT ELMEGREEN (Author) is a playwright and composer whose shows include Tiananmen (Feinstein’s/54 Below; NY Theatre Barn’s New Works Series); Vote for Me: A Musical Debate (Roy Arias Stages; London Theatre Workshop); College The Musical (Hippodrome State Theatre; pub. Dramatic Publishing Company); Thucydides (Samuel French OOB Festival winner; pub. Samuel French); Ivy & Bean: The Musical (South Coast Repertory; Atlantic Theater Company; national tour; pub. Theatrical Rights Worldwide); Magic School Bus, Live! The Climate Challenge (national tour); Ladybug Girl and Bumblebee Boy: The Musical (Bay Area Children’s Theatre; national tour); and Awesome Allie: First Kid Astronaut (Vital Theatre; pub. Theatrical Rights Worldwide). Elmegreen also writes music for plays and film, including the Drama Desk and Emmy Award-nominated Colin Quinn: Long Story Short, directed by Jerry Seinfeld (Helen Hayes Theatre; HBO special; national tour). He is a graduate of Princeton University and lives in Brooklyn. ScottElmegreen.com

DREW FORNAROLA (Author) is a playwright and songwriter from New York. He is currently developing a stage musical for DreamWorks. Film: VeggieTales Noah’s Ark (2015) starring Wayne Brady. Theatre: Claudio Quest (dir. John Tartaglia, winner of six 2015 NYMF Awards for Excellence); Molly Shannon’s Tilly the Trickster (Atlantic Theater Company, collaboration with “Saturday Night Live”’s Molly Shannon); Thucydides (winner, Samuel French Play Festival); Vote for Me: A Musical Debate (London Theatre Workshop); College The Musical (MTV Award winner, Richard Rodgers Award finalist); and two musicals for children. Concerts of Drew’s work have been presented at Lincoln Center, 54 Below, London Theatre Workshop and Broadway au Carré, Paris, among others. Highlights from new musical Tiananmen premiered in a recent concert starring Ruthie Ann Miles and Telly Leung. Graduate of Princeton University and the BMI Workshop. www.DrewFornarola.com

ANDY SANDBERG (Director) directed and co-authored the world premiere of Application Pending (Westside Theatre; Broadway World Award, Best Off-Broadway Play; Drama Desk nom., Outstanding Solo Show). He previously directed the world premieres of Craving for Travel (also co-author; Peter J. Sharp Theater), The Last Smoker in America (Westside Theatre/CATCO), Operation Epsilon (Central Square Theater, MA; four IRNE Awards including Best Play/Best Director) and Shida (Ars Nova/A.R.T.; four AUDELCO Award noms. including Best Musical/Best Director). Additional New York credits include A Perfect Future (Cherry Lane), Zelda at the Oasis (St. Luke’s), R.R.R.E.D. and Bernice Bobs Her Mullet (NYMF), Into the Woods and A Funny Thing…Forum (Blue Hill Troupe). Sandberg has been represented on Broadway and London’s West End as a producer of the hit revival of Hair (Tony, Drama Desk, Drama League, Outer Critics Circle awards), The Best Man (Tony, Drama Desk, Drama League, Outer Critics noms.) and The Realistic Joneses. B.A. Yale University. Proud member of SDC/AEA. Alumnus of Yale Dramat, Alley Cats and Whiffenpoofs. AndySandberg.com/@Andy_Sandberg

GREG BALLA (Ben/Chris understudy; Assistant Stage Manager) has performed Off-Broadway in Blue Man Group (New York, Chicago, Boston and internationally aboard Norwegian Epic) Regional: Ether Dome (La Jolla, Hartford, Huntington). Other credits include: Into the Woods, By The Way Meet Vera Stark (Lyric Stage Co.) Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me (Bad Habit Prod.) and Ragtime. (Fiddlehead Theatre Co) Mr. Balla Holds a BA in Theatre Performance from Fordham University.

ALEX TROW (Emily understudy)New York credits include London Wall (Mint Theater), Flamingo (Sanguine Theater Co.), The Detour (Metropolitan Playhouse), and Scarlett Fever (NY Fringe Fest). Regionally, she has appeared in Owners (Yale Rep), Mad Love (Northern Stage, world premiere), and Othello (Shakespeare Santa Cruz). TV/Web: “Blue Bloods”, “Twenty Five”, “Cooking for One with the Crying Chef” (Best Actress Award, ITV Fest), “Inappropriate Jane Austen”. Alex was educated and trained at Yale. Love to her family and friends! www.alextrow.com

CHARLIE CORCORAN (Scenic Designer)Fidelio (Santa Fe Opera), Vanya & Sonia & Masha & Spike (Goodman), A Comedy of Tenors (Cleveland Playhouse, McCarter), The Barber Of Seville, The Marriage Of Figaro (McCarter), Billy and Ray (Vineyard), The Weir, The Emperor Jones (Irish Repertory Theatre), Cosi Fan Tutte (Co-production Metropolitan Opera & Juilliard), Craving for Travel (Peter J. Sharp Theatre), The Last Smoker In America (Westside Theatre), A Perfect Future (Cherry Lane), Exits And Entrances (Primary Stages), Absurd Person Singular (Two River), Without Walls (Center Theatre Group). TV: “Madam Secretary”, “Mozart in the Jungle”, “Believe”.

MICHAEL McDONALD (Costume Designer)Broadway & West End: Hair (Tony, Drama Desk and Hewes Award nominations). The Public: Hair (Delacorte Theater). Off-Broadway: The Irish Curse (Soho Rep); A Perfect Future (Cherry Lane Theater); Jericho (59E59); Almost Home (The Directors Co.); Amahl and the Night Visitors (Lincoln Center). Regional: La Cage Aux Folles (Goodspeed); God of Carnage, [Title of Show] (George Street Playhouse); Take Me Out (Repertory Theatre of St. Louis); Johnny Baseball (American Repertory Theater); All The Way, Dirty Blond, Spring Awakening, Omnium Gatherum and Crowns (Zachary Scott Theatre).

GRANT YEAGER (Lighting Designer)NY: How to Live on Earth (Colt Coeur); Now. Here. This. (Vineyard); Between Worlds (NWS); Chimichangas and Zoloft (Atlantic); Long Story Short (Prospect); Romance Language (@ Ars Nova); NYMF festival design 2009-2012; Designer for The New York Pops Orchestra 2012-2016; 40+ concerts at Carnegie Hall. Regional/Int’l: SHIDA (ART); The Nest (Denver Center); Marry Harry (American Theatre Group); Joseph… (Dallas Theater Center); Soul Doctor (Parker Playhouse); Backwards in High Heels (Cleveland Playhouse); Academy (Maltz Jupiter Theatre); Siudy Entre Mundos (Venezuela, Mexico); Central Avenue Breakdown (Korea). www.grantyeagerdesign.com

ALEX HAWTHORN (Sound Designer)Sound Design: Fly by Night (Playwrights Horizons), The Great Immensity (Civilians at The Public), A Dream Play (NAATCO), Leaving IKEA (Artful Conspirators), Old Comedy From Aristophanes’ Frogs (Target Margin Theater at CSC). Theater Reconstruction Ensemble: Rhinbecca, NY; You On The Moors Now. Resident Artist with Theater Mitu: Hamlet/UR-Hamlet, Juárez, Medea, Death of a Salesman, DR. C, Hair. Broadway (Associate Sound Design): Aladdin, A Christmas Story, Chaplin, Once, Newsies, Memphis. Alex has designed and engineered concerts, live events and theatre both nationally and internationally.

WILL VAN DYKE (Original Music)Compositions: Winnie the Pooh Kids, The Lion King Jr. & Kids, The Devil’s Bitch and One Small Step for Melvin. Upcoming: Magnificent Climb (with Rick Elice), Imagine Harry and Wintersong (with Jeff Talbott) and Writing Kevin Taylor (with Josh Halloway). Music direction/musician: Kinky Boots, Rent, The Addams Family, Grease, Wicked. Will serves as MD for Annaleigh Ashford. Recordings: Chasing the Day, Writing Kevin Taylor and A View of the River. With Matt Doyle: Daylight, Constant, Make the Season Bright and Uncontrolled. www.willvandyke.com

MATTHEW MAISTO CASTING, CSA (Casting) has cast film, television and theatre in NY and Los Angeles for 10 years. He makes his first Off-Broadway venture and third collaboration with writers Elmegreen/Fornorola on Straight. Devoted to modern and provocative works, most recent credits include: Bone Tomahawk (Nominee: Independent Spirit Awards’16); Condemned (Screamfest ’15); The Escort (LAFF ’15); Lily & Kat (TIFF ’15); regional casting for The Walk (Sony). Numerous TV shows and pilots. Two associate Artios Award Nominations for Foxcatcher and Top Five.

ALEX HARE (Assistant Director) is a director and sometimes-performer. Recent credits include original devised plays Gayropa (Dixon Place HOT! Festival) and HamletGhosts (HERE Arts Center, Rochester Fringe Festival). He is a graduate of Columbia University and a member of the theatre collective The Brewing Department. Alex assisted Andy on Application Pending in 2015 (Westside Theatre) and has been associated with the Broadway productions of Side Show and School of Rock. alexhare.nyc

E SARA BARNES (Production Stage Manager) Off-Broadway (Selected): By the Water (Manhattan Theatre Club); Pageant (SAS Productions); Volleygirls (NYMF); Bloodsong of Love (Ars Nova); The Sonic Life of a Giant Tortoise (Play Company); Three Men on a Horse, Bedroom Farce (The Actors Company Theatre); Twelfth Night (Sonnet Repertory Theatre). Regional Theatre: I Promised Myself to Live Faster, Twelfth Night, Zero Cost House (Pig Iron Theatre Co.); Guys and Dolls, Saving Aimee, Memphis! Hello, Dolly! (5th Avenue Theatre).

BASELINE THEATRICAL (General Management) Andy Jones founded Baseline Theatrical in 2014, after ten years on the management teams of Rent, Avenue Q and In the Heights. Broadway: Hamilton, The Last Ship. Off-Broadway: Application Pending. Upcoming: Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812. For more, visit baselinetheatrical.com.

TINC PRODUCTIONS (Production Manager) Established in 2007, Tinc is a technical producing firm, providing experienced production management, technical talent, and event consulting. Tinc specializes in high profile theatrical productions, corporate events, meetings, fashion shows, and concerts throughout the world. Recent credits include Shear Madness, Mad Libs Live, Real Men The Musical, the New York Musical Theatre Festival, and Clinton The Musical.

CAIOLA PRODUCTIONS (Producer) Luigi Caiola is a Managing Member of B and L Management LLC, a real estate development company. Two time Tony winner, Luigi made his debut as a producer in revival of Godspell. This season: Sylvia, On Your Feet, The Color Purple, China Doll, Spring Awakening and Fiddler on the Roof. Recent: The Elephant Man, An American in Paris, All The Way, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella. Luigi and husband, Sean McGill, are devoted parents to Maria and twins William and Adam.

HARRISON CHAD (Producer) is thrilled to be making his producing debut. Harrison has been acting professionally since he was six years old. Broadway: Caroline, or Change, Les Miserables, Beauty and the Beast, Peter Pan. Regional: The Black Suits, Mame. Television: “Smash”, “Dora the Explorer” (Boots the Monkey), “Go, Diego, Go”, “Little Einsteins”, “Ed”. Film: Tarzan 2, Charlotte’s Web 2, Carry Me Home, The Hebrew Hammer. Brown University Alum. Thanks to his parents, Amanda, Josh, Grandma Barbara, Joel, Michelle, Ryan, Stu, Marc, and Andy.

PETER MAY (Producer) is President and Founding Partner of Trian Partners, an investment firm. He has co produced many Broadway shows, including An American in Paris, Cinderella, The Elephant Man, Passing Strange, Sweet Smell of Success, A View From the Bridge, the upcoming Shuffle Along, Blackbird, Gotta Dance, Waitress, and The Crucible. He has been an investor in Book of Mormon, Spamalot, West Side Story, Evita, On Your Feet, Kiss Me Kate,and many others.

OLIVER ROTH (Producer) is pleased to be producing Straight. He has previously been involved with Invisible Thread and Broadway’s The Realistic Joneses. Outside of New York, Roth has worked for Center Stage (MD), and the BHS Music Festival (PA). He currently writes “The Broadway Beat,” a monthly column in The Connector Magazine. Other producing credits include Off-Broadway’s Boogie Stomp! In 2011, Roth was awarded the American Marketing Association’s Marketing Excellence Award. He founded OHenry Productions in 2014, shortly after working on his first Broadway show, Macbeth (Alan Cumming). @oliverhenryroth www.ohenryproductions.com

SUNNYSPOT PRODUCTIONS (Producer) Since forming their partnership, Bruce Robert Harris and Jack W. Batman have produced over forty shows including: On The Town (Tony Award nomination), You Can’t Take It With You (Tony Award nomination), Pippin (Tony Award), Clybourne Park (Tony Award), Nice Work If You Can Get It (Tony Award nomination), Bonnie and Clyde (Drama Desk Award nomination), The Scottsboro Boys (Tony and Olivier Award nominations), Carrie the Musical (Ovation Award nomination), I Am Harvey Milk (Lincoln Center), The 39 Steps (Off Broadway). www.sunnyspotproductions.com.

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