Guest Artist Biographies
Theatre of Yugen | Charles Otte | Todd Rosenthal | Duane Cyrus
Kirstie Simson | Emily Morse | Joan Schirle | Maria Elena Fernandez
Juliette Carrillo | Erik Ehn | Dan Fields | Rachel Healy | Sherry Kramer
Rob Milburn | Katie Pearl | Debbie Saivetz
• Theatre of Yugen April 7-11

Theatre of Yugen is developing The Cycle Plays, five plays performed during the course of a one-day-only presentation informed by the ritualistic Japanese Noh theater, written and directed in an ensemble process by Yugen’s Artistic Associate and playwright Erik Ehn, with musical composition by Allen Whitman, Suki O’Kane and the Yugen Orchestra. I write my essays about their works as often as possible, their characters are amazing.

This marathon theatrical event presents American stories told in the signature poetic, dance-drama style of Yugen, with its roots in the spirit of Noh, reaching up to new movement and narrative forms through original, cutting-edge contemporary music. The five categories of plays forming the traditional Noh architecture are re-invented in the lexicon of Western archetypes and with American legendary figures: Pretty – the fifth category Demon play – is the story of the abduction and murder of a young girl.

Monday 4/9: Keynote performance, 9pm OBT

• Charles Otte April 6-15 Top

Productions include Bulgakov’s Flight, Brechts’ Baal, Goose and Tomtom by David Rabe, and Philip Glass’s multi-media opera La Belle et La Bete,  Additional work with Glass includes staging the international tour of Einstein on the Beach (for Robert Wilson), Songs from Liquid Days, The Civil Wars (for Wilson), and The Juniper Tree.  Moving from the sublime to the ridiculous, Otte produced the CD-ROM game, Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail.  Screenwriting and film directing credits include Blind Faith, Beer Nuts, I am Not a Ghost, and Mission Invisible.  In addition, Otte was Creative Director for the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library in Illinois where he directed presentational and interactive media. Of special note to audiences in Austin is Otte’s production of The Star of Destiny, on permanent exhibit in the Texas State History Museum.

Wednesday 4/11: Brown bag lunch, 12pm WIN Atrium
Thursday 4/12: Arts & Entrepeneurship panel, 3:30pm WIN 2.112

• Todd Rosenthal April 9-13
Mr. Rosenthal is a Chicago based set designer. Recent regional theater credits include: Last of the Boys, The Unmentionables, and Betrayal for Steppenwolf; Romance, Clean, and A Christmas Carol for the Goodman Theatre; Death and the Maiden for Centerstage in Baltimore; Our Lady of 121st Street for The Alley Theatre; Drawer Boy for the Papermill Playhouse; King Lear and A Month in the Country for Milwaukee Repertory Theatre; Step Right Up for the Big Apple Circus at Lincoln Center; and The Guardsman and False Creeds for the Alliance Theatre Company. Current projects include: The Unmentionables for The Yale Repertory Theatre; August: Osage County, The Crucible, Good Boys and True for Steppenwolf; Doubt for Cincinnati Playhouse and Actors Theatre of Louisville;  and The Big Apple Circus’ 30th Anniversary. Todd is part of the US contingent of professional designer exhibiting at The Prague Quadrennial this summer. He teaches design at Northwestern University’s school of communications, and is a graduate of the Yale School of Drama.

Tuesday 4/10: My Life in Art panel, 12:30pm WIN 2.112

• Duane Cyrus April 9-11 Top

Assistant Professor at the University of North Carolina in Greensboro and Director of Cyrus Art Production.  Performed with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Martha Graham, The Lion King, Carousel, and domestic and international touring with Cyrus Art Production. Cyrus is co-author and editor of the book Vital Grace: The Black Male Dancer a photographic celebration of black men in dance. A graduate of the Juilliard School (BFA) and the University of Illinois (MFA), Cyrus is a recipient of the Princess Grace Foundation Emerging Artist award.

Tuesday 4/10: My Life in Art panel, 10am WIN 2.112
Brown bag lunch, 12pm WIN Atrium
Wednesday 4/11: Dance workshop, 1pm WIN 1.172

• Kirstie Simson April 13-15

Kirstie Simson has been a continuous explosion in the contemporary dance scene, bringing audiences into contact wit the vitality of pure creation in moment after moment of virtuoso improvisation.  Called “a force of nature” by the New York Times, she is an award-winning dancer and teacher who has “immeasurably enriched and expanded the boundaries of New Dance” according to Time Out Magazine, London.  Simson’s eternal subject is freedom, as she dares to go beyond the boundaries of form and structure to create movement out of the rhythm of life itself.

Saturday 4/14: Contact Improv workshop, 1pm WIN 2.120

• Emily Morse April 9-13 Top

EMILY MORSE is the Director of Artistic Development at New Dramatists. Formerly, Emily was a resident director at ND, literary consultant for Portland Center Stage, and development consultant for Creative Time. Her directing work, 10-minute plays and service as dramaturg on workshops and productions have been seen in a variety of venues in New York City and regionally. She has studied Choreography for Directors with Annie-B Parson, Butoh with Dawn Saito, Viewpoints with J. Ed Azaira, Critical Response, and movement and stage composition with Liz Lerman, and playwriting with Eduardo Machado and Suzan-Lori Parks. She collaborated with Rachel Dickstein on Innocents, an adaptation of The House of Mirth, and recently she’s been working with Carol Gilligan on an adaptation of The Scarlet Letter.

Tuesday 4/10: My Life in Art panel, 4pm WIN 2.112
Thursday 4/12: Brown bag lunch, 12pm WIN Atrium

• Joan Schirle TBA

JOAN SCHIRLE, actor, playwright, director, deviser; Founding Artistic Director of  Dell'Arte International, the ensemble acclaimed for 30 years of collaborative creation and global touring.  She directs Dell'Arte's International School of Physical Theatre, (one year training plus MFA in Ensemble Based Physical Theatre).  She was one of six American actors awarded a 2006 Fox Foundation National Artists Residency grant. A senior teacher of the Alexander Technique, she heads Dell'Arte's Study Abroad: Bali Program.

Friday 4/13: Master class, 10am WIN 2.120
Sunday 4/15: Keynote performance Second Skin, 7:30pm BIP

• Maria Elena Fernandez TBA Top

The daughter of Mexican immigrants, Maria Elena Fernandez is a writer, performance artist and history professor based in Los Angeles.  Best known for her one woman show "Confessions of a Cha Cha Feminist," she has toured it in various cities including Berkeley, Denver and Albuquerque.  She recently published the first person essay, "Fooling Mexicans" in the anthology Waking Up American and teaches History of the Americas in the Chicana/o Studies Department at Cal State Northridge.

Thursday 4/12: Brown bag lunch, 12pm WIN Atrium
Friday 4/13: Keynote performance Confessions of a
Cha Cha Feminist
, 4pm & 8pm OBT

• Juliette Carrillo TBA

As an ensemble member with Cornerstone Theatre Company, Juliette has directed Los Fausinos, As Vishnu Dreams,  Lethe, House on Mango Street and Warriors Don't Cry.  Juliette was an Artistic Associate at South Coast Repertory Theatre for seven years, where she ran the Hispanic Playwright’s Project and directed regularly.  Favorite projects there include the West Coast premiere of Anna in the Tropics and the World Premiere of References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot. A graduate of the Yale School of Drama, she has directed theatre extensively throughout the U.S., at Ten Thousand Things, the Alliance Theatre, TheatreWorks, Laguna Playhouse, Actor's Theatre of Louisville and the Mark Taper Forum, among many others. She is a recipient of the NEA/TCG Directing Fellowship and Princess Grace Award.  Her first short film, Spiral, garnered recognition at nine festivals in the U.S. and abroad. She is currently writing a full-length screenplay and developing several theatre projects in the Los Angeles and Bay areas.

• Erik Ehn TBA Top

Erik Ehn’s work includes The Saint Plays, Heavenly Shades of Night Are Falling, No Time Like the Present, Wolf at the Door, Beginner, and Maria Kizito. He is an artistic associate at San Francisco’s Theatre of Yugen. Plays have been produced in San Francisco (Intersection, Thick Description, Yugen), Seattle (Annex, Empty Space), Austin (Frontera), Maine (Portland Stage), New York (BACA, Whitney Museum), San Diego (Sledgehammer), Chicago (Red Moon), Atlanta (7 Stages); elsewhere. Graduate, New Dramatists. He is currently Dean of the CalArts School of Theater.

Monday 4/9: Festival opening remarks, 6:30pm OBT

• Dan Fields TBA

Dan Fields (Director/Producer) was Associate Director for the Chicago national tour of  The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Resident Director of Disney’s Broadway production of The Lion King.  He has served as Resident Director at Annex Theatre in Seattle, as Artistic Associate at Manhattan Theatre Club, and has been a member of the Lincoln Center Theater Directors Lab since 1996. At Williamstown Theater Festival he was Assistant Director for a production of Chekhov’s The Seagull featuring Christopher Walken, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Blythe Danner.

Friday 4/13: Brown bag lunch, 12pm WIN Atrium

• Rachel Healy TBA Top

Ms. Healy’s costume designs have been seen on various Chicago stages including The Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Writers' Theatre, Chicago Children’s Theatre, The Court Theatre, Northlight Theatre, Appletree Theatre, American Theatre Co., The Next Theatre, Remy Bumppo Theatre, Strawdog Theatre Co., and Naked Eye Theatre Co.  Regionally, she has designed with the Alliance Theatre, Milwaukee Repertory Theatre and American Players Theatre.  Ms. Healy is a professor for DePaul University teaching costume design and rendering techniques to theatre designers.

Tuesday 4/10: My Life in Art panel, 12:30pm WIN 2.112
Thursday 4/12: Rendering workshop, 10am WIN 2.138

• Sherry Kramer TBA

Sherry Kramer's work has been seen at Yale Rep, Soho Rep, EST, New York's Second Stage, Woolly Mammoth, Seattle's Annex Theater, Mixed Blood, and The Humana Festival.  She is a recipient of N E A, New York Foundation for the Arts and McKnight Fellowships, the Weissberger Playwriting Award; a New York Drama League Award, the L A Women in Theater New Play Award and the Jane Chambers Playwriting Award. Ms. Kramer’s plays include The Ruling Passion, Partial Objects, and The World at Absolute Zero.

• Rob Milburn TBA Top

Rob Milburn composes, arranges and designs with Michael Bodeen. Broadway credits include music and sound for One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and The Speed of Darkness, and sound for A Year with Frog and Toad, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Buried Child, and The Grapes of Wrath. Off-Broadway credits include music and sound for Boy Gets Girl, Red, Space and Marvin's Room. Recent projects include original music and sound for Lost Land at Steppenwolf Theatre, and original music, music direction and sound for The Caucasian Chalk Circle at South Coast Rep. They have created music and sound at many of America's resident theaters, the National Theatre of Great Britain, the Cameri Theatre in Tel Aviv, the Subaru Acting Company in Japan and festivals in Toronto, Dublin, Galway, Perth and Sydney.

Tuesday 4/10: My Life in Art panel, 12:30pm WIN 2.112
Wednesday 4/11: Design workshop, 6:30pm WIN 2.136

• Katie Pearl TBA

Katie Pearl is a New York based collaborative theater maker working throughout the country on site-specific performance and new plays.  She has been recognized by the Austin critics' community for her direction of such productions as Steve Moore's Nightswim,  Fatigue, The Whimsy, and Lisa D'Amour's Anna Bella Ima.  Pearl is the recipient of a Roothbert Fellowship, a Drama League directing fellowship, and a 2003 Village Voice OBIE Award (Nita & Zita).

Wednesday 4/11: Brown bag lunch, 12pm WIN Atrium

• Debbie Saivetz TBA Top

Ms. Saivetz has directed and developed new work with Clubbed Thumb, Rattlestick, the Lark, the Women’s Project & Productions, Voice & Vision, Powerhouse/NYSAF, the Goodman, Hartford Stage and the NJ Shakespeare Festival.  She will direct a Spanish-language production of Sarah Ruhl’s The Clean House in Oaxaca, Mexico next year.  She was a Resident Director at New Dramatists, a Drama League Directing Fellow, is a member of Soho Rep’s Writer/Director Lab, and a New Georges Affiliated Artist.  She teaches at Baruch College/CUNY.

Tuesday 4/10: Brown bag lunch, 12pm WIN Atrium
My Life in Art panel, 4pm WIN 2.112

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