“Sex with Strangers” Cast and Creative Team
October 5, 2015
Sex with Strangers
By Laura Eason
Directed by Brandon Woolley
Christopher M. Smith…………………………Ethan
Tony Cisek……………………...........Scenic Designer
Christine Meyers.........................Costume Designer
Kristeen Willis Crosser...............Lighting Designer
Scott Thorson..............................Sound Designer
Kelsey Daye Lutz.........................Stage Manager
Bailey Anne Maxwell...................Production Assistant
*The Actors and Stage Manager employed in this production are members of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.
Broadway: The Other Place u/s (Joe Mantello, Manhattan Theatre Club). Off-Broadway includes: I See You (Jim Simpson, The Flea), Through the Yellow Hour (Adam Rapp, Rattlestick Playwrights Theater), Bright New Boise (Davis McCallum, Partial Comfort), That Pretty Pretty or The Rape Play (Kip Fagan, Rattlestick), Blind (Lucie Tiberghien, Rattlestick), 10x25 (Annie Baker, Atlantic Theater Company), Love Song of an Albanian Sous Chef (Moritz von Stuelpnagel, Ensemble Studio Theatre) and the cover for the female roles in original productions of Annie Baker's Circle, Mirror, Transformation and The Flick (Sam Gold, Playwrights Horizons and Barrow Street Theatre). Regional credits include: World premiere of Sam Hunter's A Permanent Image (Kip Fagan, Boise Contemporary Theater), The Diary of Anne Frank (Paul Barnes, Denver Center), Plainsong (Kent Thompson, Denver Center). TV/Film: While We're Young (Noah Baumbach), Adult Beginners, recurring roles on Hostages and Guiding Light; Unforgettable. M.F.A. from the National Theatre Conservatory. Originally from Timberlake, Ohio, Danielle lives in Brooklyn.
Christopher M. Smith
Christopher M. Smith is excited to make his PCS debut! Theater credits include: Other Desert Cities(Boston premiere), The Pavilion (Los Angeles premiere), Orange Flower Water, True West, Tennis in Nablus (New York premiere), Eurydice, Antigone; and many others in New York and Los Angeles, including site specific productions of Fool For Love (set in an apartment in Brooklyn) and The Cherry Orchard (set in a Victorian-style house in Echo Park). Most recently he co-adapted and performed in a four-actor production of Washington Square by Henry James, with The Actors' Ensemble in New York. Film work includes: Something Blue (Best Feature, Sonoma International Film Festival), Wart and The Golden Age. He studied theater at the University of La Verne. Originally from Southern California, Christopher resides in New York City. www.christophersmithactor.com
Creative Team Biographies
Laura Eason is the author of 20 plays (original work and adaptations), a musical book writer and a screenwriter. Selected productions include Sex with Strangers (Second Stage, NYC; Signature Theatre, DC; Steppenwolf Theatre, Chicago; Sydney Theatre, AU; published by Overlook Press); The Undeniable Sound of Right Now (Rattlestick Theatre and Women’s Project Theatre, NYC; Rising Phoenix Repertory, NYC); The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (Hartford Stage, CT; New Victory, NYC; People’s Light, PA; Actor’s Theatre of Louisville; Kansas City Repertory Theatre; Repertory Theatre of St. Louis; Denver Center for the Performign Arts, published by Dramatists Play Service) and Around the World in 80 Days (New Vic Theatre and Royal Exchange Theatre, UK; Lookingglass Theatre; Center Stage (Baltimore), published by Broadway Play Publishing). She wrote the book for the musicals Days Like Today, music and lyrics by Alan Schmuckler (Writers Theatre, Chicago) and Summerland, music by Jenny Giering, lyrics by Sean Barry (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre commission). Additional plays include: The Vast In-Between (Denver Center commission, also developed by the Vineyard Theatre, NYC), Remarkable Invisible (Ambassador Theatre Group commission), Every Reason to Hope and Believe (Repertory Theatre of St. Louis commission), 40 Days (NEA grant, developed by New York Theatre Workshop and Lookingglass Theatre), Plainfield Ace (developed by Two River Theatre, NJ and Atlantic Theatre Company, NYC) and an adaptation of Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates (Arden Theatre commission), among others. As a screenwriter, Laura wrote on season two and three of the Emmy-winning Netflix show House of Cards. She is an ensemble member and former artistic director of Chicago’s Lookingglass Theatre (2011 Regional Tony Award). In New York, she is a member of Rising Phoenix Repertory, New Georges and an alumna of Women’s Project Playwright’s Lab. www.lauraeason.com and @LeasonNYC on Twitter.
Brandon is a director and producer in Portland, Oregon. Sex with Strangers marks his Portland Center Stage directing debut. He most recently self-produced and directed The God Game by Suzanne Bradbeer. Later this season he will direct The Few at CoHo Productions and The Further Adventures of Hedda Gabler with Post5 Theatre. He has directed/produced shows at CoHo Productions (International Falls), Theatre Vertigo (The End of Sex), Bag&Baggage Productions (Dial M for Murder) and Portland Center Stage (JAW kickoff events, 2012-2015). Brandon has worked with Rose Riordan on multiple shows at Portland Center Stage as an assistant director (LIZZIE, The Whipping Man, Red, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and A Christmas Story). He has also collaborated with Third Rail Repertory Theatre, Broadway Rose Theatre and Live On Stage. Brandon is the producing associate at Portland Center Stage. He’d like to thank Rose and Chris for this incredible opportunity. Much love to Sean, Mom and Brittney.
Tony Cisek has collaborated with PCS on the productions of Our Town, A Small Fire, The Whipping Man, The North Pool, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, The Christmas Story and Frost/Nixon, as well as the premieres of A Feminine Ending and Sometimes a Great Notion. Tony’s work has been seen Off-Broadway and regionally at Roundabout Theatre Company, Arena Stage, Guthrie Theater, Goodman Theatre, Ford’s Theatre, South Coast Repertory, Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Cincinnati Playhouse, Alliance Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Center Stage (Baltimore), Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Indiana Repertory Theatre, Syracuse Stage, New York Theatre Workshop, Cleveland Play House, Folger Theatre, The Kennedy Center, Round House Theatre, Studio Theatre, GALA Theatre, Berkshire Theatre Festival and Signature Theatre. He has received four Helen Hayes Awards in Washington, four Drammy Awards in Portland, and a Barrymore Award nomination in Philadelphia. www.tonycisek.com
Christine Meyers is a costume designer, production designer and cinematographer who has created for opera, theater, dance and film. Current pieces include Napoli at Oregon Ballet Theatre and the upcoming indie film I Am That (production/costume design). Her work spans genres, ranging from a collaboration with dance company Zoe|Juniper, to a music video for The Head and the Heart's "Let's Be Still," to Crayola at Oregon Ballet Theatre and Tartuffe at Seattle Shakespeare Company. She has created dissolving dresses for an Alice in Chains video, Lesson Learned, and costumes for classic Handel opera in Germany. Regional credits: Seattle Repertory Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Book-it Repertory Theatre and The Huntington Theatre. Broadway credits: Matilda (assistant design) and How the Grinch Stole Christmas (associate design). Film credits: 48hour film short Lethal Cotillion (costume design), which was selected to screen at the Cannes Film Festival in 2008, and the independent feature film Bhakti Boy (cinematography).
Kristeen Willis Crosser
Kristeen is thrilled to be designing for Portland Center Stage this season. She was privileged to win 2014 Drammy Awards for Outstanding Scenic Design (Gidion's Knot) and Outstanding Lighting Design (A Bright New Boise). She has designed for several area theaters, including Artists Repertory Theatre's The Cherry Orchard and Eurydice, Third Rail Repertory Theatre’s The Night Alive and Belleville, Northwest Children’s Theater’s Willy Wonka and Pinocchio, Profile Theatre’s Buried Child and Thief River, CoHo Production’s Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune and The Outgoing Tide, and Miracle Theatre’s Mariela in the Desert and How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents. She was also recently nominated for a Los Angeles Ovation Award for her lighting design of Foxfinder in Pasadena. She thanks her husband, Mike, for all of his love and support.
Scott Thorson has been living the dream as a sound engineer at Portland Center Stage since 2010. PCS credits include live audio engineer for world premiere musicals Somewhere in Time and LIZZIE, sound designer for The Mountaintop and The Typographer's Dream, live translations for Chinglish, associate sound designer for The People's Republic of Portland and four seasons of JAW. Other Portland designs include Sweet and Sad, Noises Off, Middletown and The Night Alive (Third Rail Repertory Theatre); Ivy and Bean (Oregon Children's Theatre); Uncanny Valley (Hand2Mouth Theatre); and Fish Girl as part of the Fertile Ground Festival (Best in Fest, San Francisco Fringe). He holds a degree in architecture from the University of Oregon and is a proud Kenton resident. Many thanks to Casi for her mentorship and much love to Alice.
Kelsey Daye Lutz
Kelsey Daye is a North Carolinian dairy farmer’s daughter. PCS credits include: stage manager for The Lion, The People’s Republic of Portland (second engagement), Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, The Typographer’s Dream, The Last Five Years and A Small Fire, and production assistant for Clybourne Park, Venus in Fur, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The North Plan and Anna Karenina. Kelsey Daye is a graduate of University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She would like to thank her boys for all their unconditional love, and Shamus for being wonderful.
Bailey Anne Maxwell
Bailey Anne Maxwell is thrilled to be joining Portland Center Stage for another season, after acting as production assistant for Other Desert Cities, Twist Your Dickens and Dreamgirls last year. Bailey most recently worked as a production assistant with Artists Repertory Theatre on The Motherf**ker with the Hat, Foxfinder, Ten Chimneys, The Lost Boy and Seven Guitars. Bailey has recently enjoyed being the stage manager on Tamer Tamed and the assistant stage manager on Taming of the Shrew with Portland Shakespeare Project. She has also worked with Profile Theatre as a stage management apprentice on Buried Child and Eyes for Consuela. Bailey is a Linfield College graduate and a proud member of the EMC program.