Paul Heller/Literary Manager
I grew up in San Francisco watching Gilbert and Sullivan and A.C.T. During the 1970’s, I worked in Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe. Seeing Junkanoo in the Bahamas, mask dances in Mexico, and Easter Mass in Rome expanded my understanding of what theater could be. I think trying to understand foreign languages and cultures started me writing plays, principally to make sense of cultural and political differences and how other people perceive the U.S.
For example, “Scavengers,” which will premier in Spanish in Mexico City, retells the Conquest of Mexico by examining how present day Mexican orphans defend their empire against an American pastor. My “Beijing, California” imagines a future Chinese takeover of the U.S. in which financial success depends on learning Chinese and Chinese mores. I used the story to examine what exactly makes us North Americans. It premiered with The Asian American Theater in 2010. Finally, with Central Works, I am retelling Sophocles’ “Philoctetes”, using the play to explore the forces that might make a soldier sacrifice a chance to be a national hero in order to show compassion for an outcast veteran.
I’ve collaborated with the SF Mime Troupe, Mary Sano’s Dance Company, and Luis Tentindo’s Bunraku puppet theater. I hold an MFA in Creative Writing, and am a fellow of the Djerassi Resident Arts Program.
Laura Lowry/Artistic Associate
Laura is a professional actress and teacher in the Bay Area. She has worked in London, New York City and now the Bay Area. Laura is a full time Acting Professor at West Valley College in Saratoga. She has taught at Las Positas College, USF, Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, StageWrite and Cal Shakes. She received her MFA from FSU/Asolo Conservatory and studied Shakespeare in London with Patsy Rodenburg. After graduate school, she moved to New York City, where she continued to study Shakespeare at The American Globe Theater. Laura is delighted to be a part of this wonderful theater company that asks and explores the Big Questions through theater.
Jeff Garrett/Artistic Associate
Jeff is a professional actor in the Bay Area. He has appeared twice as Richard Feynman in Indra’s Net Theater’s production of QED, as well as being part of the cast of Delicate Particle Logic. Jeff has appeared in theaters around the Bay Area including Shakespeare Santa Cruz, the Aurora, Shotgun Players, Alter Theatre, the Jewell Theater and Cutting Ball, among others.
Alan Bond & Jenn Taylor/Crunchy Cat Video/Videographers
Alan Bond is a California native as well as a photographer, graphic designer, painter, singer-songwriter, and mandolin player. In 1977, he sold everything he had and borrowed money to buy the Stan Miller F5 mandolin he still uses. The many bands he’s played with include Oakum, a hippie western swing band, the Backyard Party Boys, and Bay Area bluegrass stalwart Dark Hollow. His latest CD is “Old Guitars”; he is working on recording a new one.
Jen Taylor is a copywriter by trade. Of course, she writes doggeral on the side. She also backpacks, cooks, practices Zen, and takes photographs. She currently edits the Berkeley Zen Center Newsletter. In other guises, she has facilitated prison workshops and taught English as a foreign language to small children. She considers that the fewer things humans actually “do,” the better it is for everybody else on the planet. She is learning to play the ukelele.
Together, they make short videos.