"The Oregon Trail" Cast and Creative Team

Posted 28 October 2016

The Oregon Trail
By Bekah Brunstetter
Directed by Rose Riordan


THE CAST

Now Jane........................................................Sarah Baskin
Billy/Matt.........................................................Chris Murray
Voice of The Oregon Trail/Clancy...........Leif Norby
Then Jane........................................................Alex Leigh Ramirez
Mary Anne...................................................... Emily Yetter


THE CREATIVE TEAM

Bekah Brunstetter..........................................Playwright
Rose Riordan..................................................Director
Misha Kachman ............................................Scenic Designer
Alison Heryer..................................................Costume Designer
William C. Kirkham........................................Lighting Designer
Casi Pacilio.......................................................Sound Designer
Liam Kaas-Lentz.............................................Projection Designer
Janine Vanderhoff.........................................Stage Manager
Will Bailey.........................................................Production Assistant
Mary Blair.........................................................Production Dramaturg

The Actors and Stage Managers employed in this production are members of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.

CAST BIOS


Sarah Baskin
Now Jane
Originally from Montreal, Sarah is a New York based actor who is thrilled to be making her debut at The Armory. Off-Broadway credits: The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore (Roundabout Theatre Company), Wolves (59E59 Theaters), I Forgive You, Ronald Reagan (Beckett Theatre), Caucasian Chalk Circle (Sonnet Repertory Theatre). Other New York and regional credits include Cardenio(American Repertory Theater), The Unbelievers, Three Women Mourn the Apocalypse (The Theatre Centre, Toronto), Beau Jest (Gulfshore Playhouse), L’Amour Fou (Dangerous Ground Productions), Romeo and Juliet (chashama), Retrospective (Manhattan Theatre Source). TV/Film credits include Blindspot, Who Killed Chandra Levy?, Thanks for Sharing, The Lives of Hamilton Fish, In the Shadow of the Water Tower, iHeart (writer/actor). Company member of The Actors Center and Subway Token Films. M.F.A.: American Repertory Theater at Harvard University. Many thanks to Portland Center Stage at The Armory and my dear friends and family.

Chris Murray
Billy/Matt
Chris is happy to be back working at The Armory with Rose and this amazing cast. Previous credits at The Armory include 10 years at the JAW festival, Great Expectations, Our Town, Futura and Sometimes a Great Notion. Regionally, Chris has worked on readings, workshops and premieres of new plays at several theaters including the New Play Summit at Denver Center for the Performing Arts and the 38th annual Humana Festival at the Actors Theatre of Louisville. Locally, Chris has performed at Artists Repertory Theatre The Liar, Playboy of the Western World, Xmas Unplugged, (I Am Still) The Duchess of Malfi, Mr. Marmalade and Take Me Out); A Bright New Boise, The Aliens, Penelope and A Skull in Connemara (Third Rail Repertory Theatre); Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson (Portland Playhouse); Falstaff and Romeo and Juliet (Oregon Symphony); Animals and Plants, Hamlet and The Receptionist (CoHo Productions) and several shows at Profile Theatre, including The Sam Sheppard One Act Festival, Six Degrees of Separation and The Sisters Rosensweig. He has appeared on Grimm and Portlandia, and produces plays and live comedy. It is an honor and a privilege to create art in the greatest city in the world.

Leif Norby
Voice of The Oregon Trail/Clancy
Leif was last seen at The Armory in Catch as Catch Can with JAW. Other recent appearances at The Armory include Professor Willard/Joe Stoddard in Our Town, De Guiche in Cyrano, Rodrigo in Othello, ensemble in both Anna Karenina and Sunset Boulevard, Richard Hannay in The 39 Steps, Tateh in Ragtime, and Benny Southstreet in Guys and Dolls. Other recent Portland appearances include Cervantes in Man of LaMancha (Lakewood Theatre Company), Dr. Givings in In the Next Room (Profile Theatre), Tom in The God Game (Brandon Woolley prod.), Bastion in Mr. Kolpert and Jane/Edgar in Mystery of Irma Vep (Third Rail Repertory Theatre), Verne/George in And So It Goes… and Frank Keller in Red Herring (Artists Repertory Theatre), Charlie in The Scene (Portland Playhouse) and Beast in Beauty and the Beast (Pixie Dust Productions). TV credits include Portlandia and Leverage. Leif is a proud member of Actors’ Equity, sends love to his wife Susie, and thanks you for supporting live theater.

Alex Leigh Ramirez
Then Jane
Alex Leigh Ramirez is originally from Ventura, California, but has settled in as a Portland area actor, deviser and theater-maker. Favorite credits include: Antigone Project (Profile Theatre and String House Theatre), TeatroSOLO: Deseo (Boom Arts Theatre), Passion Play (Shaking The Tree and Profile Theatre), Ivy & Bean (Oregon Children’s Theatre), Dance for a Dollar (Miracle Theatre) and Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson (Portland Playhouse). She is dedicated to creating original devised theater and is a proud member of String House, the independent producing title and new works laboratory that has received two Drammy Award nominations for Best Devised Production. When not on stage, Alex is inspired by the impact theater has on Portland’s youth. She is proud to work as a coach and actor with Playwrite Inc., and as a performer with The Armory’s touring education program, All’s Fair in Love and Shakespeare.

Emily Yetter
Mary Anne
Emily, hailing from Massachusetts, is thrilled to make her debut at The Armory. National Tour/Regional credits: Threesixty’s Peter Pan (Tinker Bell, National Tour), The Exorcist (Regan, Geffen Playhouse), The Night Fairy (title role, South Coast Repertory), OZ 2.5 (South Coast Repertory), Bolero: Ravel’s Dance for Orchestra (Walt Disney Concert Hall), Tempest Redux (Ariel, Odyssey). Emily has also appeared in Warner Brothers’ Project X, and a number of national commercials and popular web series including Spooked (Geek and Sundry), Relationship Goals (Go 90) and Weird Couples (Episode 28, Buzzfeed). In 2012, she started the company Crooked Grin with some peers specializing in film and site- specific devised theater. Emily produced and co-starred in their pilot, Monster Girls, which recently screened at Austin Film Festival. Emily is also an avid physical performer, training/performing in contortion, aerial arts, dance and martial arts. Training: UCLA’s TFT and BADA. Follow Emily on Instagram/Twitter: @lilemilycaitlin and emilyyetter.com.


CREATIVE TEAM BIOS

Bekah Brunstetter
Playwright
Bekah hails from Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and currently lives in Los Angeles. Plays include The Cake (Ojai Playwrights Conference), Going to a Place where you Already are (South Coast Repertory), The Oregon Trail (O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, Flying V Theatre), Cutie and Bear (Roundabout Theatre Company commission), A Long and Happy life (Naked Angels Commission), Be A Good Little Widow (Ars Nova, Collaboraction Theatre, The Old Globe), Oohrah! (Atlantic Theater Company, Steppenwolf Theatre Company’s Garage Rep and London’s Finborough Theatre), Nothing is the end of the World (except for the end of the world) (Waterwell Productions), House of Home (Williamstown Theatre Festival) and Miss Lilly Gets Boned (Ice Factory Festival). She is an alumni of Center Theatre Group’s Writers Group, Primary Stages’ Writers Group, Ars Nova’s Play Group, Playwright’s Realm and the Women’s Project Theater Lab. She is currently a member of The Echo Theater Company’s Playwright’s Lab. She has previously written for MTV (Underemployed and I Just Want My Pants Back), ABC Family’s Switched at Birth, and Starz’s upcoming series, American Gods. She is currently a co-producer on NBC’s This Is Us. She holds a B.A. from UNC Chapel Hill and an M.F.A. in Dramatic Writing from the New School for Drama. Bekahbrunstetter.com.

Rose Riordan
Director
Rose is in her 19th season at Portland Center Stage at The Armory, where she serves as associate artistic director and has previously directed Our Town, The People’s Republic of Portland (2013 and 2015), Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, The Typographer’s Dream, LIZZIE, A Small Fire, The Mountaintop, The Whipping Man, The North Plan, Red, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, A Christmas Story, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Receptionist, A Christmas Carol, Frost/Nixon, How to Disappear Completely and Never Be Found, Doubt, The Underpants, The Pillowman and The Thugs, which won four Drammy Awards, including Best Ensemble and Best Director. She has also recently directed, for various other theaters, Adam Bock’s Phaedra, The Passion Play, Telethon and The Receptionist. In 1999 she founded the annual JAW: A Playwrights Festival. JAW has been instrumental in developing new work for the company’s repertory, including Threesome, Bo-Nita, The People’s Republic of Portland, The Body of an American, The North Plan, Anna Karenina, Outrage, Flesh and Blood, Another Fine Mess, O Lovely Glowworm, Celebrity Row, Act a Lady, The Thugs and A Feminine Ending. Rose has also directed some of the staged readings for JAW festivals: The Thugs (2005), Telethon (2006), A Story About a Girl (2007), 99 Ways to F*** a Swan (2009), The North Plan (2010), San Diego (2012), The People’s Republic of Portland (2012), Mai Dang Lao (2013) and A Life (2014). She enjoys being part of a company committed to new work and having a beautiful building in which to work.

Misha Kachman
Scenic Designer
Misha Kachman has worked at Arena Stage, The Kennedy Center, Baltimore Center Stage, Signature Theatre, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Asolo Repertory Theatre, Round House Theatre, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, The Wilma Theater, Maryland Opera Studio, Theater J, Opera Lafayette, Skylight Music Theatre, Syracuse Stage, Studio Theatre, Shanghai Dramatic Arts Center and Milwaukee Shakespeare, among many other companies in the United States and abroad. Misha is a recipient of the 2013 Helen Hayes Award for his design of The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company. He is a company member at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company and an associate artist at Olney Theatre Center. Misha is a graduate of the St. Petersburg Theatre Arts Academy, and he serves as the associate professor of scene and costume design and head of M.F.A. in Design at University of Maryland.

Alison Heryer
Costume Designer
Alison Heryer is a costume designer for theater, film and print. She is thrilled to be returning to Portland Center Stage at The Armory, after designing costumes for Ain’t Misbehavin’, Our Town, Three Days of Rain and Threesome. Other design credits include productions with Steppenwolf Theatre Company, 59E59 Theaters, La MaMa, The New Victory Theater, Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Indiana Repertory Theatre, Portland Opera, Artists Repertory Theatre and The Hypocrites. Recent awards include the ArtsKC Inspiration Grant, the Austin Critics Table Award and a 2016 Drammy. Alison is a faculty member in the School of Art + Design at Portland State University and a member of United Scenic Artists Local 829. alisonheryerdesign.com

William C. Kirkham
Lighting Designer
William C. Kirkham is thrilled to return to The Armory. Recent credits include: Little Shop of Horrors (The Armory); Moby Dick (Alliance Theatre); Julius Caesar, Murder for Two (Utah Shakespeare Festival); Moby Dick, The Little Prince – 2014 Jeff Award for Lighting Design (Lookingglass Theatre Company); Life and Limb (Steppenwolf Theatre Company); United Flight 232 (The House Theatre of Chicago); Stupid F**king Bird, Antigonick (Sideshow Theatre Company); Three Sisters, The Tennessee Williams Project (The Hypocrites); Gidion’s Knot, From Prague (Contemporary American Theater Festival); Wonderful Life (ArtsWest Playhouse); Bud not Buddy, A Year with Frog and Toad (Chicago Children’s Theatre); Pete, or the return of Peter Pan, Girls Who Wear Glasses (Childsplay). William earned his M.F.A. in Stage Design at Northwestern University and is a proud member of USA Local 829. wckirkham.com

Casi Pacilio
Sound Designer
Casi’s home base is The Armory, where her recent credits include Little Shop of Horrors, A Streetcar Named Desire, Great Expectations, Ain’t Misbehavin’, Three Days of Rain, Cyrano, The People’s Republic of Portland, Threesome and Dreamgirls (PAMTA Award); Other Desert Cities, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, A Small Fire and Chinglish with composer Jana Crenshaw; and ten seasons of JAW. National shows: Holcombe Waller's Surfacing and Wayfinders; Left Hand of Darkness, My Mind is Like an Open Meadow (Drammy Award, 2011), Something’s Got Ahold Of My Heart and PEP TALK for Hand2Mouth Theatre. Other credits include Squonk Opera’s Bigsmorgasbord-WunderWerk (Broadway, PS122, national and international tours); I Am My Own Wife, I Think I Like Girls (La Jolla Playhouse); Playland, 10 Fingers and Lips Together, Teeth Apart (City Theatre, PA). Film credits include Creation of Destiny, Out of Our Time and A Powerful Thang. Imagineer/maker of the Eat Me Machine, a dessert vending machine.

Liam Kaas-Lentz
Projection Designer

Liam is a native of Bellingham, WA. He is an ensemble member of Sojourn Theatre, having served as their stage and production manager for the past ten years and thirteen productions. He has also stage managed for Hand2Mouth Theatre, Portland Playhouse, Artists Repertory Theatre, Pacific Conservatory for the Performing Arts, Geva Theatre Center, Oregon Children's Theatre, Pixie Dust Productions, The Kitchen, River to River Festival, Teatro Milagro, and many others. He received his B.F.A. in stage management from Southern Oregon University and his M.Ed. in curriculum and instruction from Portland State University. Liam has taught stage and production management with a focus on ensemble, devised and site-specific contexts and methodologies at Georgetown University, Northwestern University, Portland State University, Reed College, and Lewis and Clark College. He is a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association, and lives with his wife and two cats in southeast Portland.

Janine Vanderhoff
Stage Manager
Janine is glad to be back for her second season at The Armory. Previous credits at The Armory include: Little Shop of Horrors, JAW 2016, Great Expectations, Ain’t Misbehavin’ and Our Town. Other Portland credits include Portland Opera’s Sweeney Todd (followspot caller); the world premiere of DC Copeland's Play (stage manager/production manager); and How to End Poverty in 90 Minutes and The Other Place at Portland Playhouse (stage manager). Touring stage management credits include: The Graduate (starring Morgan Fairchild), CATS, The Vagina Monologues, Jekyll & Hyde and Show Boat. While in New York, Janine had the opportunity to work on The Lion King on Broadway, as well as with many Off-Broadway and regional companies. Production management credits include: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart for “Democalypse 2012 Republican National Convention” (Tampa, FL); Straz Center (Tampa, FL); and The Fox Theatre (Atlanta, GA). Proud NYU graduate and AEA member.

Will Bailey
Production Assistant
Will is excited to be making his debut this season as a production assistant at The Armory. He recently worked as a production assistant on Sweeney Todd and an assistant stage manager on The Italian Girl in Algiers with Portland Opera. Will has worked as a production assistant and prop master at Artists Repertory Theatre, where his production assistant credits include: Ithaka, Mistakes Were Made, Xmas Unplugged, The Monster Builder, The Motherf**ker with the Hat, Intimate Apparel, Exiles, Blithe Spirit and The Invisible Hand. Will has also worked as a production assistant for Profile Theatre, Portland Shakespeare Project, Portland Playhouse, and as a stage manager at Teatro Milagro.

Mary Blair
Production Dramaturg
Despite a degree in Business Administration and a career in Human Resources with Macy’s and PepsiCo, Mary is a theater geek at heart. She joined Portland Center Stage at The Armory in 2010 as a member of the JAW reading committee, then left to manage CoHo Productions for two seasons. She returned to The Armory in 2014 as Literary Associate and provided dramaturgical support for last season’s Our Town – her favorite play of all time. Mary wishes to thank Rose Riordan for this second opportunity to immerse herself in a great script and contribute to the magic!

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