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Shotgun Players is one of the few mid-sized theatres that still maintains a core company of artists. We meet the first Sunday of every month and go away for a 3-day annual retreat to debate, analyze, and celebrate our craft and process. Company members are not just exceptional artists, they are also thoughtful, community-minded people who get the big picture. They are the heart and creative conscience of this organization.
Andy Alabran received his B.A. in Theater from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and his M.F.A. in Acting from the American Conservatory Theater. He is an actor, director, writer, teacher, and producer. He has performed with Theatre First, the Shotgun Players, and Killing My Lobster. A current company member of the Shotgun Players since 2000, his acting credits include Bent, The Bacchae, The Skriker, Loot, A Fairy’s Tail, Cyrano de Bergerac, Threepenny Opera, The Miser, Woyzeck, The Death of Meyerhold, A Seagull in the Hamptons, Truffaldino Says No (world premiere), and Mother Courage. He served as Creative Director with San Francisco’s premiere sketch comedy group Killing My Lobster. With KML, he also performs, writes, directs, teaches, and produces where credits include The Shakespeare Bug (world premiere), The Whole Megillah, KML Plays with Beckett (at A.C.T.), and Patronizes the Arts. He also had the sublime experience of performing in San Francisco Symphony's production of Leonard Bernstein's Candide along with, among others, Rita Moreno, George Hearn, and Jason Danieley. He teaches at Studio A.C.T., the Young Conservatory program, the Oakland School for the Arts, and with 826 Valencia. He also facilitates a course called “The Artist’s Way”.
Scenic Design, Costume Design, Scenic Artist
Nina has worked all over the bay area designing sets and costumes. In addition to her designs at Shotgun (Faust Part 1, Macbeth, The Farm, The Threepenny Opera) her work has been seen at the Aurora Theatre Company, San Francisco Mime Troupe, TheatreFIRST, The Berkeley Playhouse, The Jewish Theatre, Musical Theatre Works, Town Hall Theatre, Solano College, Willows Theatre Company, St Mary’s College, and San Francisco State University. She was the recipient of the 2009 Landisman Fellowship, and has been nominated for two Shelley Awards and two Bay Area Critics Circle Awards. She is constantly amazed that she has such a cool job and gets to hang out with so many cool people.
Kevin Clarke started out as a fan of Art Street Theatre. After attending three seasons of Art Street shows, Kevin wrote a letter to Mark Jackson requesting an audition for the upcoming Messenger #1. He was cast as Agamemnon/Orestes in the show and has been working with Mark and company ever since. Kevin originated the roles of Shostakovich in The Death of Meyerhold, Prometheus in Io - Princess of Argos!, Happy Man in The Lost Plays of Jacques du Bon Temps, Don Juan/Scanarelle in workshop productions of Don Juan, and Lord Kain, bad guy supreme, in The Forest War. He directed Jackson in his one man show, I Am Hamlet and co-directed Faust Pt. 1 with Mark in addition to designing costumes and weapon/blood effects. Other Bay Area roles include Tristan Tzara in Tom Stoppard’s Travesties and Del in David Mamet's The Cryptogram at Shotgun Players, and Horst in Bent at Theater Rhinoceros. Kevin co-directed the maverick performance duo Hagen & Simone with Monique Jenkinson from 2001-2007. Their work was seen locally in theaters, on nightclub platforms and in store windows. They received great acclaim for Future Perfect – an evening-length piece about style and editing as distilled from two vastly different texts: the eclectic memos of fashion grand dame Diana Vreeland and Strunk & White’s The Elements of Style, the father of all grammar guides. Kevin first hit the San Francisco stage in the work of Chris Black (POTRZEBIE Dance Project) and continues to perform in many of the company’s dances. In Mark Jackson’s absence, he supervised the 2004 revival production of Black’s Izzy-nominated The Ecstasy of St. Whatshername, a solo originally created with and directed by Jackson. He has performed with First Seen, Huckabay McAllister Dance, Joe Goode Performance Group, OnSite Dance Co., SQUAD, STEAMROLLER and Stephen Pelton Dance Theater. Kevin has appeared in several independent short films by Kia Simon, most notably her beautiful The Dive, which was in rotation on MTV2. He also worked with Kia on developmental stages of her feature, Alice, where he played opposite actress Rosanna Arquette. He is a part of a group of core extras in Gus Van Sant's Milk. His design work has been included in Print Magazine’s 2003 Regional Design Annual and in Two-Color Graphics: Unlimited Design Solutions Templin Brink Design).
Costume Design and Construction
Valera has been a Shotgun company member since 1999. Of Valera’s nearly forty Shotgun designs, her favorites include: The Village Bike; The Mousetrap; New Electric Ballroom; Strangers, Babies; Precious Little; God’s Ear; The Norman Conquests; Macbeth; The Forest War; and Cabaret. Her work has been seen at theaters throughout the Bay Area, including: Douglas Morrison Theatre, Lesher Center for the Arts, San Francisco Playhouse, Saint Mary’s College, Crowded Fire, Magic Theatre, Custom Made Theatre Co., and Word For Word.
Christine began designing costumes for Shotgun Players in 2004 with Travesties, and she's happily returned year after year ever since. Some other favorite Shotgun credits include Beardo, In the Wound, Assassins, Woyzeck, and Edward Gant. Christine's designs are also seen all over the Bay Area with companies like Opera Parallèle, Magic Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, Cal Shakes, Encore Theatre, Aurora Theatre, Boxcar Theatre, San Francisco Playhouse, UC Berkeley, Center Repertory, Just Theater, Festival Opera, and Berkeley Playhouse. Outside of the bay Christine designed costumes for Lucia di Lammermoor with LA Opera for their 2013/14 season. Christine has an MFA in costume design from UC San Diego and is the recipient of two SF Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Awards, and a 2008 Patté Award for Theater Excellence. Check out her work online at christinecrook.squarespace.com
Founding Artistic Director, Actor, and Director
Actor, Director, and Writer
Mark Jackson is a director, playwright, performer and maker. His work has been seen in the Bay Area at Art Street Theatre, Aurora Theatre Company, Encore Theatre Company, EXIT Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, Potrzebie Dance Project, San Francisco International Arts Festival, The Shotgun Players, and Z Space. Nationally at The Catamounts (Denver), Hunger & Thirst (NYC) and The Studio Theatre (Washington D.C.). Internationally at Arts International Festival IV (Japan), Edinburgh Festival Fringe and Bread & Roses Theatre (UK), Deutsches Theater Berlin and English Theatre Berlin (Germany). Mark was a 2003 resident playwright of the Djerassi Resident Artists Program and a 2005 German Chancellor Fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. More on Mark at markjackson-theatermaker.com.
Stage Manager, Production Manager
Nikita Kadam is a stage manager and occasionally a production manager if you ask her nicely. She started her crusade to organize art at UC Berkeley where she graduated with a degree in Theatre and Performance Studies in 2014. Nikita began working with Shotgun in 2015 with Heart Shaped Nebula and since then has managed Eurydice, Hamlet, Caught, and Grand Concourse. When not working at Shotgun, she works with other theatre and dance companies in the Bay Area like Just Theater, World Arts West, and Smith/Wymore Disappearing Acts to name a few. In her spare time, she also coaches gymnastics at Golden Bear Gymnastics.
Heather Kelly-Laws is a stage manager and sometimes-playwright born and raised in San Francisco. She began her Shotgun escapades as production assistant for Eurydice in 2015 and has been opening doors, raising curtains, and occasionally pushing buttons here ever since. She has also worked around the Bay with the Cutting Ball Theater and San Francisco Fringe Festival, and is co-founding artistic director of the Pop Quiz Reading Series, a quarterly-ish cold-reading series of new and under-produced plays which takes place at her home in Oakland.
LIZ HITCHCOCK LISLE
Liz Lisle is a producer, dramaturg and playwright. She has worked in non-profit theater arts and management since 2000, and with Shotgun Players since 2001. Liz is also a company member and the director of Shotgun’s Theatre Lab, the company’s second stage experimental season. She has spent several years on the selection committee for the Bay Area Playwright’s Festival, and worked as a dramaturg for the BAPF, as well as for Word for Word. Liz’s play EAT was produced by the Shotgun Theatre Lab in 2003, and in 2007 she was commissioned to create a new play in Just Theater’s Writer/Director Lab, the product of which is called Matterless Fact. Liz is the recipient of the Observership Grant awarded by Theatre Communications Group. In addition to her work with Shotgun Players, Liz is the Managing Editor of Watchword Press, an independent literary collective that publishes a biannual literary magazine. She also co-produces an annual festival of radical puppetry in San Francisco called PuppetLOVE!
Actor and Fight Director
Dave is an award winning Fight Director that has composed violence for many Shotgun productions including The Three Musketeers, Cyrano de Bergerac, Macbeth, The Threepenny Opera, Bulrusher, King Lear, Blood Wedding, Cabaret, Bright Ideas, and Abington Square among others. He is also the resident Fight Director at California Shakespeare Theatre and his credits include work at ACT, Berkeley Rep, San Jose Rep, Magic Theatre, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, SF Playhouse, La Jolla Playhouse and Impact Theatre, among others. His acting contribution to Shotgun includes roles in In The Wound, The Three Musketeers, King Lear, Cyrano de Bergerac, Dog Act, The Death of Meyerhold, Mother Courage, The Vampires, Troilus and Cressida as well as the Shotgun Theatre Lab production of That Ugly Month of September. Dave is a Full Instructor of Theatrical Combat with Dueling Arts International and a founding member of Dueling Arts San Francisco. He teaches Stage Combat certification classes at Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, St. Mary’s College of California and Pixar Animation Studios.
Champagne Staged Reading Series Program Director, Stage Director
Susannah is an award-winning director, teacher, and theatre maker. For five years, she was the Joint Artistic Director of Paducah Mining Co., a San Francisco-based theatre ensemble that produced acclaimed work by established playwrights and devised original pieces on complex material such as domestic terrorism, spousal abuse, and poverty in America. During her tenure with Paducah, she was awarded three Dean Goodman Choice Awards. She has also been nominated for BATCC, Broadway World, and Shellie Awards. She has directed and taught for a variety of companies throughout the Bay Area including: A.C.T., Aurora Theatre Company, Boxcar Theatre, California Shakespeare Theater, Marin Theatre Company, Mugwumpin, the Playwright's Foundation, Porchlight Theatre Company, Sonoma County Rep., the Sacramento Theatre Company, TheatreFIRST, and Town Hall Theatre Company. Susannah’s relationship with Shotgun began in 2004 when she conceived and directed an original multi-disciplinary theatre piece on faith in America called The Faith Project. Originally presented as part of the Shotgun Lab, the piece went on to be her thesis at UC Davis. After graduating, Susannah directed one part of The Coast of Utopia for Shotgun’s first Champagne Series, and has subsequently directed Shaw’s Mrs. Warren’s Profession, Brecht and Weill’s The Threepenny Opera, E. Hunter Spreen's Care of Trees, and Sondheim and Weidman's Assassins. She is extremely proud to be a member of this extraordinary company. To keep track of Susannah's work please click here.JOANIE McBRIEN
Dramaturg and Development Director
Joanie McBrien has been a company member since 2001 and has served as Shotgun's Director of Development since 2004. As a company member she has worked as a dramaturg and assistant director for The Skriker, Iphigenia in Aulis, There Will Be No Trojan War, A Fairy's Tail, Oedipus Rex, The Miser. She has co-directed Troilus & Cressida and King Lear with Patrick Dooley. Directing credits include The Vampires, Cyrano de Bergerac and The Three Musketeers. Joanie has also worked for California Shakespeare Theater since 1993 as a dramaturg, teaching artist and lecturer. She has a Master's Degree from The University of Warwick in English and European Renaissance Drama. Joanie has taught courses at St. Mary's College, Diablo Valley College, and for the Extended Education Department at Stanford University. She has also worked as a teaching artist in several Bay Area schools. Joanie is proud to call Shotgun Players home.
Casting Director, Actor
Trish has performed with Shotgun since 1998 and is also the company's Casting Director. She is a graduate of the National Theatre of Australia and holds an honors degree in Psychology from the University of Melbourne. Studying human behavior is the recurring theme in her varied career/s. She is an experienced drama teacher and currently practices as a coach for communication skills and career strategies. Trish enjoys marrying people - yes, really - and she hopes that most of the marriages she has officiated at are happy ones. She has also been MC and officiator at other public events, including funerals. These are roles she deeply appreciates. Trish was a top-rated radio announcer in Australia and Europe, and has appeared in various television roles. She has also written sketch comedy for stage and national television in Australia. She is alarmed that a lot of the music she used to play on popular radio is still following her around. Who knew the '80s would last this long?! She is something of an '80s music expert and relishes radio work and voice-overs. Trish is the recipient of Pater Award (Australasian radio) and she has been nominated for several BATCC awards. Her favorite roles with Shotgun include Mother Courage, Agave in The Bacchae, Marion (the predatory realtor in Caryl Churchill's first play, Owners), Juliet's Nurse, and Woman in the west coast premiere of Edward Albee's The Play About The Baby. Trish has appeared in theatres around the bay area including ACT, The Aurora Theatre, and SF Shakespeare Festival. When not acting or being somehow involved in people things, Trish enjoys surfing (web and sea) and digging (garden and music).
Judy hails from New Orleans, where she studied at the University of New Orleans and Contemporary Arts Center and was a founding member of the Uncommon Players. In New York she studied Meisner Technique at the William Esper Studio. Judy is an original memeber of Shotgun Players, having performed multiple roles in its first production, David Mamet's Edmond. Other Shotgun productions include Baby with the Bathwater, All Men are Whores, The Shawl, Sure Thing, The Blue Hour: City Sketches and The Tragical Historie of Doctor Faustus, Possum Play, The Water Engine, Mother Courage, Quills and most recently , Cabaret. She has also performed at the California Conservatory Theatre, the College of Marin, Oregon Coast Music Festival, and the Esalen Institute's First Annual Arts Festival in Big Sur. She landed the leading role in the East Coast tour of A Rage in Orange, to educate the public regarding women and HIV. She can be seen and/or heard in over 50 local radio and television commercials as well as several educational and industrial videos. She assists Shotgun Players in its ongoing fundraising efforts by catering Opening Night festivities.
Richard Reinholdt is an award-winning actor who has been breaking it down with Shotgun since Season 3 (1994.) He is a 5th generation San Franciscan and a UC Berkeley alumnus (Rhetoric.) To date, Richard has appeared in 14 mainstage Shotgun Players productions along with numerous productions with other local theatre companies. You can keep up with his activities by clicking here.
Actor and Actors' Equity Liaison
Katja Rivera is a director and actor, studying at Los Angeles City College Theatre Academy and the Drama Studio London at Berkeley. After getting her Equity Card she took a ten year hiatus from acting to raise her two gorgeous and smart daughters, but returned with Shotgun's production of Silence and the Storyteller. Other Shotgun productions include Three Sisters (Anfisa) and We Won't Pay (Antonia), and King Lear (the Fool). She's also acted with the Magic Theatre, Theatre Rhinoceros, Center Rep and Geoffrey Chaucer and Co., as well as directed with Shotgun The Winged Man, Eastenders Rep, Subterranean Shakespeare, Boxcar Theatre and Custom Made Theatre and Playground. She is also proud to be a member of AEA and SF Playground.
Make a Difference (MAD) Coordinator
Leigh Rondon-Davis is Shotgun’s resident ‘gal about town’. At Shotgun, Leigh is a frequent Production Assistant (Heart Shaped Nebula, The Rover, The Village Bike, CAUGHT, and The Events), Front of House staff, Make a Difference Program Coordinator, 2017 season Champagne Reading Series Co-Coordinator, and, most recently, one of Shotgun’s newest (and youngest) Company Members. When Leigh isn’t running frantically around the Ashby Stage, she works at Magic Theatre in San Francisco and Ubuntu Theater Project in Oakland. Leigh attended Wellesley College and was a member of Laney College’s Fusion Theatre Project; she is a performer, visual artist, dramaturg, and playwright.
Actor and Director
Michelle has been a company member since 2015. She is a Bay Area theatre maker for over 20 years. With Shotgun, she has worked on Skriker, As You Like It, Arrivals and Departures, Our Town, and Caught. She is one of the Champagne Staged Reading Series coordinators this season and has directed Ohio State Murders and Cherokee. Michelle is also a proud company member of Mugwumpin, a theatre performance collective. She also has strong roots at the EXIT Theatre in SF where 2 of her murals can be seen. Michelle has been fortunate to also have worked with many other local companies, including: The Ground Floor at Berkeley Rep, Central Works, Impact Theatre, Ferocious Lotus, Cutting Ball Theatre, Magic Theatre, and Bindlestiff Studios.
Writer and Director
Jon Tracy works as a director, playwright, designer and educator with such companies as Shotgun Players, Magic Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, Aurora Theatre, San Francisco Playhouse, PlayGround, American Conservatory Theatre, Darkroom Productions, Impact Theatre, TheatreFIRST, Solano Repertory Company and the San Francisco, Marin, Carmel, Napa, Sebastopol, and Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festivals. A graduate of Solano College Theatre’s Actor Training Program, he is the recipient of grants from Theatre Bay Area and the National Endowment for the Arts. Jon is a proud member of SDC, the union for stage directors and choreographers.MATT STINES
Megan became a proud Shotgun company member in 2015. Past Shotgun productions include: Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Grand Concourse, The Village Bike, Hamlet (in roulette), The Mousetrap, Sarah Ruhl’s Eurydice, Bonnie & Clyde, and The Coast of Utopia. Other Bay Area credits with the Aurora Theatre Company: A Bright New Boise, Metamorphosis; Central Works: Dracula Inquest, Richard the First; Just Theater: We Are Proud to Present; The O'Neill Foundation: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof; Boxcar Theatre: Buried Child, A Lie of the Mind; Symmetry Theatre: Patience Worth; and the 11th Hour Ensemble: Alice. Megan has a background in competitive gymnastics and trains regularly as a dancer. Movement direction and choreography credits include: Our Town (West Valley College, dir. Jessica Holt), Eurydice (Palo Alto Players, dir. Jeffrey Lo). Training includes a BA in theatre arts from San Francisco State University and two programs completed through the Moscow Art Theatre: The Stanislavsky Summer Session (Cambridge) and The Winter Extension Program (Moscow).
Matt Stines began his Shotgun adventures with Mark J’s Faust Pt. 1 in 2009. Six months later he graduated from San Francisco State and has occasionally slept in the Ashby pews ever since. Beyond Shotgun, he’s made noises and other things with local companies like Aurora, Center Rep, Cutting Ball, ACT Conservatory, Marin Theatre Company, San Francisco Shakespeare, San Francisco Playhouse, New Conservatory, San Francisco Sketchfest, Soundwave ((5)), and many tireless projects with his State comrades. He’s been heard nationally in Albuquerque and New York (FringeNYC), and internationally at the Prague Quadrennial 2011. He is a recipient of two BATCC awards. His collective Full Grownmin has created 11 albums, none of which contain any actual content. He makes music and sound art on his own and with Avant Digs, tries to write sketch comedy, and teaches sound for theatre at his alma mater. Please visit mattstines.wordpress.com to learn more.
Champagne Staged Reading Series Program Director, Actor and Stage Director
Beth Wilmurt is an actor and singer who has performed in over fifty plays, musicals, dance pieces, and cabarets with a variety of Bay Area theater companies, including Shotgun Players, Aurora Theatre Company, Potrzebie Dance Project, Erika Shuch Performance Project, Banana Bag & Bodice (New York), SF Playhouse, Word For Word, Magic Theater, Campo Santo, Encore Theatre Company, Crowded Fire, EXIT Theatre, Willows Theater, Center Repertory and Art Street Theatre, of which she is a founding member. Her performances in theater and cabaret have garnered numerous awards and award nominations, among them the Bay Area Theater Critics Circle Award, the Shelly Award, the Dean Goodman Award, and the SF Bay Guardian Goldie Award. She has appeared on several local newspaper Best Performer of the Year lists, and was named by San Francisco Magazine one of the top 100 Bay Area artists.
Production Manager, Stage Manager
Hanah Zahner-Isenberg grew up in Long Beach, California. Finding the sunshine and warm ocean breezes overly pleasant, she come north to attend UC Berkeley, where she received a BA in Religious Studies and Theater. Her first venture as a stage manager for Shotgun consisted of wrangling a bunch of Norse gods in Ragnarok at John Hinkel Park in 2006. Since then, she has SMed Assassins, The Great Divide, Road to Hades, remount of Beowulf, Ubu for President, and Blood Wedding. Other favorite projects include Once on this Island with company member Kimberly Dooley and Annie with Mina Morita at Berkeley Playhouse. Hanah also works as Artistic Learning Coordinator for Cal Shakes. She is very happy and proud to work with such a talented group of artists.