“Measure your life in love.”
Don’t miss this sensational, iconic musical hot off its 25th Anniversary! Rent took Broadway by storm with its deeply resonant look at a deadly virus, financial precarity, and love as a radical act. As a group of young artists fights for justice and visibility during the AIDS crisis, they revel in the beautiful bonds of friendship and chosen family. With its profound message of joy and hope in the face of uncertainty, this timeless musical reminds us to measure our lives with the only thing that truly matters — love.
Tony Award for Best Musical, Best Book & Best Original Score, 1996
Pulitzer Prize for Drama, 1996
Rent Plot Summary
Spoiler alert! A brief overview of Rent.
Alphabet City is a neighborhood in the East Village of Manhattan. Learn more about the history of this area and the many arts and activist movements that took place there.
AIDS, Arts, & Activism
Learn about the history of the AIDS epidemic, including the cultural responses that exist to this day.
La Bohéme to Rent: Legacies
Rent is loosely based on the opera La Bohème, composed by Giacomo Puccini. Learn more about the story of La Bohéme and its connection to Rent.
Thank You, Jonathan Larson: 25 Years of Rent
More than 25 years after Jonathan Larson's death and the original cast's first preview performance of Rent, both of which occurred on January 25, 1996, the world still has Jonathan to thank for his contributions to the living canon of musical theater.
From the Director: Chip Miller
How do you measure a year? Director Chip Miller on the timeless and inspiring messages of Rent.
Book, Music & Lyrics by Jonathan Larson
Delphon "DJ" Curtis Jr.*
Benjamin Coffin III
Angel Dumott Schunard
Ensemble, Understudy Maureen Johnson
Ensemble, Understudy Angel Dumott Schunard & Mark Cohen
Sandra W. Lee*
Ensemble, Understudy Mimi
Aléa Lorén aka Church Girl*
Ensemble, Understudy Joanne Jefferson
Ensemble, Understudy Roger Davis
Ensemble, Understudy Benjamin Coffin III & Tom Collins
*Member of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.
Synth, Acoustic & Electric Guitar
Acoustic & Electric Guitar
Director & Choreographed by
Original Concept/Additional Lyrics
Music Supervision & Additional Arrangements
Music Director & Conductor
Dominique Fawn Hill
Associate Lighting Designer
Amanda Vander Hyde*
Assistant Stage Manager & Intimacy Coordinator
Dance & Fight Captain
Chip Miller & Eric Little
New York Casting Director
*Member of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.
Assistant Scenic Designer
Costume & Wig Artisans
Will Bailey, Dresser; Foggy Bell,
Stitcher; Jenna Cady, Dresser;
Vanessa Elsner, Dresser & Wig
Dresser; Miranda Nolten, Assistant Wig Artisan; Melinda Roddy,
Costume Maintenance; Claudia La Rue,
Stitcher; Natalie Scott, Stitcher; Niko Suits,
Stitcher; Heather Taylor, Dresser
Roy Josh Antonio
Laurel Jane Vonderau
Follow Spot Operator
Jeremiah is a Chicago-based actor who is grateful to return to live theater with this special production and company. Credits include Oliver! and Madagascar at The Marriott Theatre, Beauty & the Beast at Drury Lane Theatre, Musidorus in Head Over Heels at Kokandy Productions (Jeff Award nominee). TV: Chicago Med. Much gratitude to Chip, Eric,PCS, and the DDO team for this experience. Big love to this cast,D33, a Grimm, a Beatty, a Jason, and a bunch of Alsops. This performance is dedicated to the humans who lost their lives to HIV+AIDS. @jnalso
Born in Portland and raised overseas, Caitlin feels honored beyond measure to return home to work on the PCS stage. Caitlin is an actor, musician, and educator with an M.F.A. in acting from The University of California, Irvine, and a B.F.A. in musical theater from Otterbein University. Regional/international theatrical roles include Rose in Dogfight (San Francisco Playhouse), Paulina in The Winter’s Tale (Texas Shakespeare Festival), Clara in Passion (Claire Trevor Theater), and Clytemnestra in The Electra Project (dir. Mihai Măniuțiu, National Theatre Bucharest). Film/TV: Emma. Love to my family. May we all measure our lives in love. @cbrookerreative
DJ is so grateful to return to Portland Center Stage for this piece. Most recently seen in Hedwig and the Angry Inch as the titular role, they were also in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. He graduated from William Peace University with a B.F.A. in musical theater. DJ has performed in productions across the country, including several occasions with North Carolina Symphony through the Manning Chamber Music Series. Favorite credits include David Lee’s adaptation of Lerner and Lowe’s Camelot with The Old Creamery Theatre Company and Great Plains Theatre, Ruined at Burning Coal Theatre Company, and, most recently, Dr. Frank-N-Furter in The Rocky Horror Show at Four Corners Musical Theatre Company. Local credits: A Christmas Carol and Crowns at Portland Playhouse, and Mlima's Tale with Profile Theatre.
Charles is truly over the moon to be working on this show with this incredible group of people. It is a dream come true! Previous Portland Center Stage credits include Charles Bingley (Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley) and the Instructor (Redwood). As an artist who wears a number of hats (actor, producer, teacher, and director), he’s worked with various companies over the years including Portland Playhouse, Many Hats Collaboration, Third Rail Repertory Theatre, Fuse Theatre Ensemble, Confrontation Theatre, and Oregon Children's Theatre. So much love and appreciation to everyone involved in Rent for giving your time, talent, and tenderness. And to those who are reading this, THANK YOU for being here with us in this moment. Check out thecharlesgrant.com or IG: @charlesLg_ to say hello.
Sandra is ecstatic to be making her PCS debut and be back in her hometown after relocating from NYC. Off-Broadway: Blueprint Specials (The Public Theater, Under the Radar Festival), Bullet Catchers (The Gym at Judson), Comfort Women (Theatre at St. Clements). Regional: Rent (Ivoryton Playhouse). Other select credits include Diana in Next to Normal, Bloody Mary in South Pacific, and Alice Beineke in The Addams Family. Film/TV: Dietland (AMC). Sandra is also a disabled Army combat veteran having served in Iraq shortly after 9/11. Many thanks to this talented creative team for giving me the opportunity to ride along on the magnificent journey which is Rent. So much love to my incredible support system of friends and family, a crazy pack of joyous but sometimes maddening five dogs, but especially to my husband, Mac, who is my rock and strength. They allow me to live “No day but today!” Proud member of SAG-AFTRA. @sandrawlee
Aléa Lorén Johnson debuted her first solo in church at age 2. She was always moved and inspired by the soul, sound, spirit, and vibration she’d experienced growing up in church — hence the name “Church Girl.” Angela Braxton Johnson, Aléa’s mother, composed and directed stage plays at church, in which Aléa had the privilege to perform. She can act, sing, and play the clarinet. Aléa performed in the chorus for Show Boat with Portland Opera, went on tour with professional gospel group Kingdom Sound, and sang in front of many gospel grates at the Stellar Awards. She sang background vocals for Johnathan Nelson, Lillian Lloyd, Josh Groban, and opened up for groups like Kiss, just to name a few. Aléa believes her purpose is to serve and impact people with love and light by sharing the many gifts she’s had the privilege to cultivate over the years. She plans to do that by continuing to perform and cultivating other artists by helping them to pursue their dreams.
Johnny was most recently seen starring as Barry in the original cast of Sing Street, which had its world premiere at New York Theatre Workshop. Broadway: The Last Ship. Off-Broadway: The Low Road, Into the Woods (The Public Theater), Ride the Cyclone (MCC Theater). National Tour: American Idiot. International: Rent (Edinburgh Festival Fringe). Regional: Once, Next to Normal, Spring Awakening (ZACH Theatre). Love and thanks to Mom, Dad, Ashley, and Paige, my managers Thomas Green, Lakey Wolff, and Sarah Chybrzynski at Lakey Wolff & Co, Eric, Alexandra, and my dog, Luna. IG: @johnnynewcomb
Kailey is so honored to return to PCS to tell this eternal story alongside such gifted artists. This past fall, she devised a drive-in production of an original work, Bluebeard, at Bag&Baggage Productions. She was last seen wearing pink as Lydia in Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley. Other local credits include Teenage Dick, An Octoroon, and The Importance of Being Earnest at Artists Repertory Theatre; The Wolves at Portland Playhouse; Sense and Sensibility at Clackamas Repertory Theatre; Urinetown and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee with Anonymous Theatre Company. After appearing in Into the Woods and Ordinary Days at Broadway Rose Theatre Company, she rejoins them this fall for The Evolution of Mann. Enormous gratitude to Chip and Eric for celebrating and elevating Maureen; to my PDX family of artists for inspiration and support; and to Matt for everything. IG: @kaileydidit
Claire is thrilled to be in her first full production at Portland Center Stage after performing in Ms. Holmes & Ms. Watson – Apt 2B and The Red Beads at the JAW festival this past summer, and The Bells That Still Can Ring in 2020. It is an honor to be part of this iconic show with such an incredible group of artists.Previous credits include shows with Artists Repertory Theatre, The Alliance Theatre, Portland Playhouse, Profile Theatre, Oregon Children’s Theatre, Broadway Rose Theatre Company, Bag&Baggage Productions, B Street Theatre, and The Barnyard Theatre. She is a graduate of Emory University, London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts, and the Institute for Contemporary Performance. When she’s not on stage, you can find her making experimental theater in garages, fountains, and public parks, or sitting with her kitty knitting, crocheting, or tufting. Thank you to all of my loved ones for the endless support, and especially to Chip and Eric for believing in me!
Ashley is ecstatic about returning to Portland Center Stage for this show — being in Rent is a dream come true! She is an award-winning, half-Korean actor/producer who co-founded Desert Island Studios to increase artists’ accessibility to film resources. When Ashley was 16, she applied to NYU to study acting. She was admitted on a full merit scholarship, which was good because she lied when she told her parents she had applied to other schools. She ended up training at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute. Ashley would like to thank her partner, Joe, without whom she would probably never eat a home-cooked meal. She is grateful to be a part of this incredibly talented team of creators. @ashleysongmellinger @desertislandstudiospdx
Nyla, originally from Brooklyn, NYC, is a singer/songwriter with two albums and one visual album currently streaming. She made her debut on the stage with the 2nd National Tour of Hamilton as Peggy Schuyler and Maria Reynolds. Nyla has also had the honor to play Dionne in Hair, directed by James Vasquez, at The Old Globe Theater in San Diego, CA. She is grateful to play what she considers a "dream role," and she wants to thank her friends and family for their love and support as well as the creative team for inviting her on the journey. IG: @nylanana
Ben is a Portland-based actor and musician, last seen at Portland Center Stage in Astoria: Part One & Two. Locally, he has also performed at Portland Playhouse, Third Rail Repertory Theatre, Broadway Rose Theatre Company, Lakewood Theatre Company, Pixie Dust Productions, and others. Ben is also a musician and songwriter with music on Spotify and iTunes. You can follow Ben's upcoming projects, creative work, and outdoor adventures on Instagram at @benjamintissell or at benjamintissell.com. Ben is overjoyed to be collaborating with this incredible group of artists to tell this iconic story!
Skyler creates in a variety of ways, ranging from poetry to music to filmmaking to acting. He seeks to challenge society’s preconceptions of how art is to be used — exchanging entertainment for medicine, an artifact, or a meditation. By using his artistic process as a pathway towards his own personal healing, Skyler hopes to help audiences see the world in a new light and find beauty in unlikely places. Skyler is thrilled to be joining his first production at PCS. His film and television credits include lead roles in James Franco’s Memoria and the film Sophie Jones (currently on Showtime, Best Feature Film winner at Americana Film Festival), and a recurring role on seasons one and two of the TBS comedy Chad. On the stage, he was last seen as Zach in Lyon Theatre’s production of Tigers Be Still. Other favorite stage roles have included Pippin from Pippin, Frank Abagnale Jr. from Catch Me If You Can, and J. Pierpont Finch from How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.
A.D. is a Chicago-based artist, thrilled to make his PCS debut. Regional theater: The Phoenix Theater Company (The Color Purple), Drury Lane Theater (Forever Plaid), The Fireside Dinner Theatre (The Buddy Holly Story), Mirrorbox Theater (His Shadow), Mercury Theater Chicago (Avenue Q, Little Shop of Horrors), Playhouse Stage Company (Ragtime), Court Theater (Five Guys Named Moe), Children’s Theater of Madison (Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane), Black Ensemble Theater (Teddy Pendergrass Story), Cardinal Stage (A Year with Frog and Toad), ETA Creative Arts Foundation INC. (Migration). Television: Southside (HBO), American Greed (CNBC). In concert, he has toured Europe and Asia. Much love to my MIGHTY village. Love you mommy! AEA member. A.D. is represented by DDO Artist Agency. Jeremiah 29:11. IG: @adeontaiii
Will is a Chicago-based actor, writer, and educator. They are thrilled to return to Oregon after two seasons with Oregon Shakespeare Festival, where they reimagined genderqueer characters in As You Like It, Macbeth, and Bill Rauch's Oklahoma! Chicago credits include Notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci (Goodman Theatre), Mr. Burns (Theater Wit), and Straight White Men (Steppenwolf Theater). Additional theater affiliations include About Face Theatre, Chicago Children’s Theatre, Northlight Theatre, Victory Gardens Theater, and Williamstown Theatre Festival. Will received a 2016 BroadwayWorld Chicago Award for their previous performance as Angel (Metropolis Performing Arts Centre). With Erin Murray, Will is the co-creator of the solo show Gender Play and the podcast Teacakes & Tarot. Gender Play will have its world premiere, performed by Will, next year in Chicago. Proud Northwestern graduate. Represented by Gray Talent Group. willwilhelm.com IG: @wwilhelm
Austin is elated to be making his Portland Center Stage debut with this show! Recent Portland credits include Buddy in Elf: The Musical (Lakewood Theatre Company) and The Wolf/Cinderella’s Prince in Into the Woods (Broadway Rose Theatre Company). Austin spent two seasons in the acting company of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, appearing in the U.S. premiere of Shakespeare in Love, among others. Other work includes the Fertile Ground Festival, Oregon Fringe Festival, Lunacy Fest, and Puppeteers for Fears. He holds a B.F.A. in theater performance and a minor in musical theater from Southern Oregon University. IG: @austincomfort
Jessica is thrilled to be working with Portland Center Stage for the first time on this project. Since she began working in Portland in 2009, she has appeared on many local stages with companies including Stumptown Stages, Staged!, Defunkt Theatre, Crave Theatre Company, Shaking the Tree Theatre, Funhouse Lounge, Badass Theatre Company, The Anonymous Theatre Company, Fuse Theatre Ensemble, and others. She was a company member with Post5 Theatre for several years and is presently a member of sketch comedy group Spectravagasm. She was most recently seen on the Lakewood Theatre Company stage as Meg in Leading Ladies. Some favored roles include Leading Player in Pippin (Drammy nomination, 2019), Berger in Hair, and Heather Chandler in Heathers. Many thanks to the entire team!
Eric is a musician and theater artist living in Portland, Oregon. Past credits at Portland Center Stage include Music Man (music director), Fun Home (conductor), The Last Five Years (pianist), and Sweeney Todd (Tobias).
Cameron is a Portland-based multi-instrumentalist, thrilled to be making his debut with Portland Center Stage playing guitar/keys for Rent. He moved to Oregon from Tokyo, Japan, where he played a series of solo jazz shows and fronted an indie rock band for three years. Locally, he’s played guitar and keyboards for Haley Heynderickx, Phillip Rogers, and Each Both. Cameron currently operates The Doran School of Music, teaching students how to love music lifelong, while perpetually writing and producing his next project.
Alexandra is a Portland-based drummer and percussionist. Along with their band, The Cabin Project, Alexandra has performed and recorded in various other bands, musical projects, and theater companies throughout Portland. They’re very excited to be making their PCS debut and honored to work with so many talented performers! As well as teaching music privately, Alexandra is a teaching artist and lead campus and community coordinator at PHAME, an arts organization for adults who experience intellectual and developmental disabilities. Having worked with the I/DD community for many years, Alexandra is thankful for the experience of fusing a love for music and performance with accessibility and representation in the arts. zannydrums.com
Zack is a multi-genre guitarist hailing from Wichita, Kansas. His versatility on the six string stems from rock, country, blues, and pop influences. He currently plays lead guitar with Portland-based pop rock band Keeper, and has a solo project in the works.
Sam is multi-instrumentalist and music teacher currently residing in Portland, Oregon. Born and raised in San Jose, CA, he was surrounded by a broad influence of styles including salsa, bossa nova, and rock. He found joy in studying piano and guitar through private lessons, rock camps, and middle school “Estudiantina.” Eventually, he took guitar more seriously in his high school jazz band and groups with friends outside of class. Sam received his bachelor's degree in jazz studies at the University of Oregon and was heavily involved in the Eugene music scene; especially with his band Spiller. Now in Portland, Sam teaches privately and gigs primarily on guitar and bass with artists Julia Logue, Maria DeHart, Bory, Golden Boy, and his solo project Salmon Doza.
A new resident of Portland via NYC, Jake is thrilled to be making his PCS debut. As a professional multi-instrumentalist for the past 25 years, some favorite credits include Seven Brides (Godspeed Opera House), Hair (Barrington Stage Company), Rent (Ivoryton Playhouse), Mamma Mia! (ACT of CT), and Altar Boyz (New World Stages).
British-born Sequoia has worked for such companies as the Royal Opera House, English National Opera, Rambert Dance Company, the BBC Singers, and the acclaimed music theater group the Clod Ensemble. Since his arrival in Portland, he has regularly worked for Portland Opera, the Oregon Symphony Orchestra, and Opera Theater Oregon. He also enjoys working in progressive music outside of the classical box, and has performed and collaborated with the likes of rock legends Mark E Smith (The Fall), Damo Suzuki (Can), and jazz/improvising luminaries Meredith Monk, Jacqui Dankworth, and Barb Jungr.
Jonathan received the 1996 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for Rent. He also won the 1996 Tony Award for Best Musical and the 1994 Richard Rodgers Award for Rent and twice received The Gilman & Gonzales-Falla Theatre Foundation's Commendation Award. In 1989, he was granted the Stephen Sondheim Award from American Music Theatre Festival, where he contributed to the musical Sitting on the Edge of the Future. In 1988, he won the Richard Rodgers Development Grant for his rock musical Superbia, which was staged at Playwrights Horizon. He composed the score for the musical J.P. Morgan Saves the Nation, which was presented by En Garde Arts in 1995. Mr. Larson performed his rock monologue tick, tick... BOOM! at Second Stage Theatre, The Village Gate, and New York Theatre Workshop. In addition to scoring and song writing for Sesame Street, he created music for a number of children's book-cassettes, including Steven Spielberg's An American Tail and Land Before Time. Other film scores include work for Rolling Stone’s magazine publisher Jann Wenner. He conceived, directed, and wrote four original songs for "Away We Go!," a musical video for children. Rent, his rock opera based on La Bohème, had its world premiere on February 13, 1996, at New York Theatre Workshop. Jonathan died unexpectedly of an aortic aneurysm on January 25, 1996, 10 days before his 36th birthday. His music (including songs cut from his shows) is archived in the Library of Congress.
Chip is a director and producer, currently in the role of associate artistic director at Portland Center Stage. They were previously the artistic associate/resident director at KCRep. Directing: August Wilson's Gem of the Ocean, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, the world premiere of Redwood (Portland Center Stage); Larry Owens' Sondhemia (Carnegie Hall); Journeys to Justice (Portland Opera); School Girls; Or, The African Mean Girls Play, Welcome to Fear City, Sex with Strangers, A Raisin in the Sun (KCRep); the world premiere of Becoming Martin by Kevin Willmott (The Coterie Theatre); dwb: driving while black (Lawrence Arts Center, Baruch Performing Arts Center); 4:48 Psychosis (The Buffalo Room). Chip has developed work with playwrights including Kevin Wilmott, Kara Lee Corthron, Brittany K. Allen, Catherine Trieschmann, Darren Canady, Andrew Rosendorf, Susan Kander and Roberta Gumbel, Michelle T. Johnson, and Michael Finke. They have developed work at The William Inge Theatre Festival, NYU’s New Plays for Young Audiences, La Jolla Playhouse’s DNA Series, PCS’s JAW Festival, The Midwest Dramatists Center, KCRep’s OriginKC New Works Festival, The Living Room Theatre, and Musical Theatre Heritage. Education: NYU, Tisch School of the Arts.
Britton is a Pittsburgh-based scenic designer. He has designed three world premieres — Untitled and The Burdens at City Theatre Company, and Old Man and the Sea at Pittsburgh Playhouse. Some of his other designs from these venues include The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey at City Theatre Company; and Good Grief, and Wig Out! at Pittsburgh Playhouse. Britton has designed for Portland Center Stage (Hedwig and the Angry Inch); Long Wharf Theatre (I am My Own Wife) in New Haven, CT; Cardinal Stage (Fun Home) in Bloomington, IN; and Mixed Blood Theatre (Mermaid Hour Remixed) in Minneapolis, MN. Closer to home, he has designed for Pittsburgh Public Theater, Front Porch Theatricals, Pittsburgh CLO, Prime Stage Studio, Pittsburgh Musical Theater, and Quantum Theatre. He is a member of the USITT IDEAs Committee and is the coordinator for the USITT Gateway Program.
Dominique is from the Bronx; design credits include An Untitled New Play by Justin Timberlake, One Night in Miami, Pipeline (City Theatre Company); Journeys to Justice (Portland Opera); Mlima’s Tale (Profile Theatre); STEW (Soho Repertory Theatre); Where the Mountain Meets the Sea (Actors Theatre of Louisville); Hedwig and the Angry Inch, (Portland Center Stage); Dark Girl Chronicles: CHRONICLE X (The Shed); 125th & FREEdom (National Black Theatre); Grow Up (film); Grace (Ford’s Theatre); Tambo & Bones (Playwrights Horizons/Center Theatre Group). M.F.A., UCSD. dominiquefhill.com
Jennifer is a freelance lighting designer, stage technician, and theater-maker who has been working behind the scenes for Portland theater, opera, and dance since 2008. She attended Portland State University and in 2007 received The Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival’s Achievement Award for her lighting design for PSU’s production of Electra. Her lighting designs have spanned a wide range of venues, disciplines and styles, from site-specific dance, to opera in bars, to children's theater. Recent work includes Artist Repertory Theatre’s The Chinese Lady, Portland Opera's Journeys to Justice, Coho Productions’ From These Streets I Rise, and Third Rail Repertory Theatre’s Home/Place and You Are Here. Jennifer is a core company member of Third Rail Repertory Theatre. Long live theater.
Sharath is an Oregon-based designer who works internationally focusing on experimental, commercial, academic, political, and socially conscious theater. Recent designs: Portland Center Stage, A Contemporary Theatre, Artists Repertory Theatre, Alliance Theatre, Alley Theatre, Asolo Repertory Theatre, Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, Indiana Repertory Theatre, The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, American Repertory Theatre, Seattle Rep, Cal Shakes, Alabama Shakes, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Arena Stage, Weston Theater Company. Additional work in New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, D.C., Boston, Norfolk, Raleigh, Aspen, India, France, England, Germany, Romania, Vietnam. He has previously served as a visiting assistant professor, lead designer, guest artist, instructor, or lecturer at Reed & Whitman Colleges, Yale, Fordham, Columbia, Willamette, Ohio, and Butler Universities. Affiliations: USA829 IATSE, Theatrical Sound Designers and Composers Association, Arts Envoy for the U.S. Department of State, National Respondent for the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival, resident artist at Artists Repertory Theatre. B.F.A.: Ohio University. M.F.A.: Yale School of Drama. sharathpatel.com
Danny is a queer artist and storyteller based out of Kansas City, Missouri. They're excited to be back with such a wonderful team here in Portland.
Kamilah is a playwright, dramaturg, and educator originally from North Carolina. She holds a B.F.A. in theater education from The University of North Carolina at Greensboro and was an NC teaching fellow. Kamilah has spent several seasons at celebrated regional theaters across the country, including Triad Stage in Greensboro, NC, Asolo Repertory Theater in Sarasota, FL, and Two River Theater in Red Bank, NJ. Her play Nick & The Prizefighter was a semifinalist in the 2021 Bay Area Playwright’s Festival and won the 2021 Urbanite Theater Modern Works Festival.
Jessica is delighted to be back at Portland Center Stage. She is excited to add Rent to her list of wig shows, which includes Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Fun Home, The Color Purple, and Lady Day. She has a B.A. in costume design from the University of Oregon, where she discovered her love for the art of wig making and design. She is also lucky enough to use her hair skills to work in the local TV and film industry.
Phil is a visual and theatrical artist based in Portland and the program director of Coho Productions. He is a multidisciplinary artist who likes to express himself in as many art forms as possible. He identifies as a futurist and surrealist who focuses on the realities of the human condition, especially as it relates to his experience as an African American. As a technologist, Phil likes to find ways to use technology to imagine these future worlds, whether it is creating using virtual reality, binaural recordings, or new programming software that enhances the theatrical experience. As a theatrical artist, Phil is curious about the performer-spectator relationship and enjoys finding ways to deconstruct theater norms. Phil has a B.F.A. and M.A. from Ohio University. If you would like to learn more, comment using @philjohnsonlive or visit philjohnsondesignstheworld.com for more content.
James is a lighting designer, writer, and board game creator who lives and works in Portland, Oregon. Primarily working in dance, he has traveled the country and world, including to India, China, and — his personal favorite — the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. He was born and raised in Portland. He’s thrilled to be working at Portland Center Stage again after many years away.
Janine is thrilled to return for her sixth season at Portland Center Stage. She has been a stage manager and production manager in theater for more than 20 years on Broadway, Off-Broadway, regionally, and on tour. She's had many favorite productions in that time, but some of her favorites include Frida … A Self Portrait, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Macbeth, A Christmas Memory/Winter Song, Wild & Reckless (all at Portland Center Stage); Sweeney Todd (Portland Opera); The Lion King (Broadway); The Graduate (starring Morgan Fairchild), Cats, The Vagina Monologues, Jekyll & Hyde, and Show Boat (all on tour); The Daily Show with Jon Stewart “Democalypse 2012 Republican National Convention.” Proud NYU graduate and AEA member.
A graduate of Western Oregon University with a B.F.A in technical production, Amanda is a freelance stage manager in the Portland theater scene. She works as a production and stage manager for the likes of Oregon Children's Theatre, CoHo Productions, triangle productions!, The Actors Conservatory, Many Hats Collaboration, and Chapel Theater. She also works as the resident stage manager at Majestic Theatre. Along with stage managing, she is an intimacy coordinator in the Portland area, having worked on various pieces, including Heathers: The Musical at Linfield University. She wants to thank her partner for putting up with her late hours and constant busyness.
Dana is so excited to be back at Portland Center Stage. Her previous credits at PCS are In the Heights, Redwood, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (production assistant), Hedwig and the Angry Inch (assistant stage manager), and The Bells That Still Can Ring (stage manager). Dana graduated from The Ohio State University with a B.A. in theater. While at OSU, Dana was the stage manager on 7 Ways to Say I Love You, Beyond All Recognition, Execution of Justice, Michael Von Siebenburg Melts Through the Floorboards, and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Dana sends all of her love to her family, both blood and found.
Andrea is so in awe of this ensemble of East Village denizens. Off-Broadway/NYC: A Delicate Balance (Transport Group, Fall 2022); Golden Shield (MTC); Where The Wild Things Are (New Victory); Neurosis (DR2); Syncing Ink (The Flea); Elf The Musical (MSG); New York Stage and Film; Dramatists Guild Foundation; ACLU/NYCLU. National Tours: Yemandja; The Sound of Music; Bullets Over Broadway; Elf The Musical; Finding Neverland. Regional: Portland Center Stage, 5th Avenue Theatre, Florida Studio Theatre, Arrow Rock Lyceum, Alley Theater, TUTS. Associate credits include numerous Broadway, Off-Broadway, film, television, and commercial projects. zee-casting.com
What Critics Are Saying
"The world would certainly be a better place if love were the measure of a life." –BroadwayWorld
"It’s a magnificent rock musical featuring a mix of talented locals along with out-of-state actors, directed and choreographed with precision, heart, and soul by PCS associate artistic director Chip Miller." –Judy Nedry
"Theater companies need a heap of talent for a successful performance of Larson’s Rent, and the cast of Portland Center Stage once again exceeds expectations." –PDXParent
"A revival of Rent sells itself—the iconic musical is a cultural phenomenon, and its many ardent fans will jump at the opportunity to see it where it belongs, live on stage." –The Portland Observer
"However, one of the most revolutionary aspects of this musical is how it has touched generations of queer individuals, especially children. Director Chip Miller brings this up in his note." –The Log, Lewis & Clark College
"Loosely based on Giacomo Puccini’s famous opera La Bohème, Rent is a rock musical that was revolutionary at the time of its Off-Broadway premiere in 1996. The production went on to win four Tony Awards, including Best Musical." -The Huntington News
"Mr. Larson has proved that rock-era song styles can be integrated into a character-driven story for the stage with wildly affecting success." -The New York Times
"Rent now feels like a time capsule in many ways. It’s a portrait of a frenzied time at the end of the millennium." -The Mercury News
What Audiences Are Saying
"Phenomenal energy. My aspiring artist child was thrilled with the entire experience."
"One of the best performances of any show I have seen in a while! I forgot how much I love Rent and this cast really brought it to life and reminded me of how relevant the show’s themes continue to be."
"Top-notch production. Outstanding voices."
"Haven’t seen Rent in 23 years. Loved this production and looking forward to seeing more shows here."
"The show gave me goosebumps multiple times. The cast was wonderful and I can’t wait to see tick, tick ... BOOM!"
"Brilliant piece of art performed with excellence."
"Phenomenal! Want to see it again tomorrow!"
"Enthusiastic and talented actors/singers brought this story to life and clearly communicated the theme of needing love and support in difficult times. Clearly, much work went into this production, including the building of the urban set and the dramatic visual background scenery. Thanks to all involved."
"An amazing performance!! I literally am blown away by the talent I saw on stage."
"First time seeing a musical live on the stage, and this did not disappoint! Amazing job to the whole cast and crew!"
"Superb performances by all of the cast. The energy level was astounding. Sets, choreography, costumes, everything was excellent."
"If you have the time, go see this show. The actors are absolutely phenomenal and have the kindest hearts. Literally such a beautiful show with beautiful people. 10/10 recommend."
"I laughed, I cried and I got chills during many parts of the performance. The energy was moving and left us wanting more."
Portland Center Stage is committed to identifying & interrupting instances of racism & all forms of oppression, through the principles of inclusion, diversity, equity, & accessibility (IDEA).