ELISA BOCANEGRA (Truvy) was most recently seen in SPILL for L.A. Theatre Works. She starred in The Happiest Song Plays Last by Pulitzer-winning writer Quiara Alegria Hudes which was part of the Elliot Trilogy, a partnership with Center Theatre Group and the Latino Theater Company. She also appeared in Between Riverside and Crazy for L.A Theatre Works. Elisa received critical acclaim for her performance in Hero Theatre’s production of The Conduct of Life by Maria Irene Fornés. Her NY credits include: The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore w/ Olympia Dukakis at Roundabout Theatre Company, Song for New York at Mabou Mines, Adventures of Barrio Grrll at SPP. Regional credits include: The Goodman Theatre and South Coast Repertory’s production of Destiny of Desire. Also at SCR: The Motherf**ker with the Hat and California Scenarios. Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s productions of Servant of Two Masters, Paradise Lost, and Much Ado About Nothing. Electricidad at the Center Theatre Group, Love’s Labor’s Lost at the Huntington Theatre Company, Camino Real w/ Ethan Hawke at the Williamstown Theatre Festival. Elisa was part of the development of Like Water for Chocolate, the musical at the Sundance Theatre Lab. Film and television credits include: Easy to Assemble with Illeana Douglas and Jeff Goldblum, El Superstar (produced by Norman Lear and George Lopez), Sundance-winner Girlfight, Spun Undeclared by Judd Apatow, and Gilmore Girls. She is artistic director of Hero Theatre, which she founded with the help of her mentor Olympia Dukakis, www.herotheatre.org
SHANNON HOLT (Ousier) was previously seen at LATW in Seven, Steel Magnolias and Judgment at Nuremberg, as well as the national tour of Judgment at Nuremberg. Regional credits include Berkeley Rep, Mark Taper Forum, South Coast Rep, Laguna Playhouse, Pasadena Playhouse, The Public Theatre, Trinity Rep, Indiana Rep, Actors Theatre of Louisville, and Dixon Place in NYC. Stages throughout Los Angeles include work with Evidence Room, Rogue Machine, East West Players, Boston Court, Actors’ Gang, Padua Playwrights, Odyssey Theatre and Antaeus Theatre Company, where she is a company member. Her work has garnered nominations and awards from LA Weekly, Stage Raw, BroadwayWorld, Backstage West, and LA Stage Alliance Ovations. Film and TV credits include Seinfeld, ER, The Marc Pease Experience and Love, Liza.
MONICA McSWAIN (Shelby) has made a significant mark in both the dance world and acting world…and continues. As a child of the theater and Omaha native, Monica has danced, sung, and acted her way into the hearts of audiences in leading roles on Broadway (Schoenfeld Theatre, Lincoln Center), in feature films (Miramax, Paramount, Columbia & Universal Pictures) and television (ABC, FOX, Showtime, Disney). As a member of Actors’ Equity Association & SAG-AFTRA, Monica’s leading roles also include over 50 national TV commercials, billboards and national magazines. Her credits comprise dancing for notables like Debbie Allen and with legendary Michael Jackson (hired as one of only three females). Monica’s Choreography and teaching has commissioned her to produce across the globe. Her honors and awards include a full scholarship with The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and appearing with their main company. Monica believes in balancing career and life doing missions in the US and overseas, frequenting Rwanda, Africa. www.imdb.me/MonicaMcswain.
CERRIS MORGAN-MOYER (Annelle) is delighted to be touring L.A. Theatre Works’ production of Steel Magnolias as both cast member and tour manager. Previously with LATW: Daniel Deronda, Jane Eyre, Tribes, Under Milk Wood, Frost/Nixon, and the national tour of Pride and Prejudice. Regional theatre credits include Karen Zacarias’ Legacy of Light and Camilla Carr’s Grace Note. In Los Angeles: Mike Leigh’s Abigail’s Party, Beth Henley’s Sisters of the Winter Madrigal, Harold Pinter’s Old Times, Nick Darke’s The Body and Jane Chambers’ Last Summer at Bluefish Cove. In New York, Cerris worked with such companies as Gorilla Rep and Faux Real Theatre Company. Favorite NYC credits include: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, King Lear, The Taming of the Shrew, Faust, Fun Box Times Square, The Naked Show, and Where I’m Headed. Cerris’ film credits include: Appaloosa, The Rehearsal, The Audition, The Performance, Fantasy, Beatrice, Rule of Three, Wall/Paper, and Mister 49. Cerris’ voice is featured in a variety of audiobooks, animated series, video games, global campaigns and feature films such as: Black Panther, The Mummy, Spider-Man, Guardians of the Galaxy, and the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise. Cerris was born in Cornwall, UK, and filmed her first film there at the age of six: A Different Drummer, BBC biography of poet Jack Clemo. She trained at Central School of Speech and Drama in London.
INGER TUDOR (M’Lynn) is a graduate of London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, Harvard College and Harvard Law School. She is a long-time member of Theatre of NOTE and Rogue Machine Theatre and a guest artist with A Noise Within and Antaeus Theatre Company. Los Angeles theatre credits include: The Suppliant Women, Honky, Stop Kiss (Rogue Machine), Antigone (A Noise Within), Diet of Worm, Slither (Chalk Repertory), Going to St. Ives (Actors Coop – LA Stage Scene Award, Stage Raw and NAACP nominations for Best Lead Actress), What May Fall, Just Say No, Food for Fish (NOTE), The Exorcist (Geffen Playhouse), Stuff Happens (Mark Taper Forum), The Maids (Stage 54 – 4 NAACP Theatre Award nominations) and Romeo and Juliet: Antebellum New Orleans, 1836 (Boston Court – NAACP Theatre Award nomination – Best Supporting Actress). Television credits include: Goliath, Doubt, Aquarius, Hand of God, House, NCIS, General Hospital and Without a Trace. Film credits include: On Time (Best Actress Awards – Ikuska Flm Festival, Spain and Grand Off Film Festival, Poland), Elizabeth Blue, Lemon, Stairways, The Social Network, The Lost One and The Making of “Grits” (Mockumentary Festival – Best Actress Award). Voice-over credits include: Jefferson’s Garden, The Goodbye Girl (L.A. Theatre Works), The Grim Sleeper: The Lost Women of South Central, Engineering Infinity (Deyan Audio) and voice-over narration for the blind for film and television through WGBH.
PATTI YASUTAKE (Clairee) received an Independent Spirit Awards – Best Supporting Actress nomination for the film The Wash, not long after her film debut in Ron Howard’s Gung Ho, which became a series she co-starred in with Scott Bakula. She is best known as ‘Nurse Alyssa Ogawa’ from the Star Trek: The Next Generation series and films. Her extensive TV guest star and film roles include: Notorious, Pretty Little Liars, NCIS: Los Angeles, The Closer, Cold Case, Grey’s Anatomy, Bones, Blind Spot, The Road to Galveston, Drop Dead Gorgeous, Tales of Meeting and Parting, and more. In theatre, she worked extensively with East West Players and originated lead roles in Stumps (New Mexico Rep & American Southwest Theater), I Don’t Have To Show You No Stinkin’ Badges (L.A. Theatre Center & San Diego Rep), Tea (Manhattan Theatre Club), plus in touring East West Stories (EWP/Hawaii) and Finding Home (SCR). Other notable leads include: Loose Ends (SCR), Top Girls (SCR & Westwood Playhouse), And The Soul Shall Dance (Olympic Arts Festival), Hokusai Sketchbooks (EWP), and playing ‘M’Lynn’ in Steel Magnolias (EWP). She is a native of Los Angeles and graduated with Honors in Theater from UCLA.
BRIAN KITE (Director) has directed live theater across the United States and abroad and is currently the Chair of the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television Department of Theater. He served as producing artistic director of La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts from 2008-2015 and directed many productions for the theater, co-produced by McCoy Rigby Entertainment, including their critically acclaimed productions of American Idiot, Billy Elliot, Les Misérables, Miss Saigon, Little Shop of Horrors, Dinner with Friends, Steel Magnolias starring Cathy Rigby, Driving Miss Daisy starring Michael Learned, and David Auburn’s Proof. Kite is the recipient of the Los Angeles Ovation Award for Best Direction of a Musical for his production of Spring Awakening and was again nominated for his productions of Les Misérables and American Idiot. He directed the national tours of Judgment at Nuremberg, In the Heat of the Night, The Graduate, and Pride and Prejudice for L.A. Theatre Works, and staged the first production of Miss Saigon to ever play in China when his show closed the Macau International Music Festival. He also directed Top Secret: The Battle for the Pentagon Papers, starring Margaret Colin, which toured throughout Mainland China. The production was the first U.S. production of a play at Beijing’s National Center for the Performing Arts (NCPA). In 2018, he staged the South China premiere of David Lindsay-Abaire’s Rabbit Hole in Mandarin at the Guangzhou Dramatic Arts Center in Guangzhou, China. He helmed a production of Cabaret in Bermuda under the patronage of the Queen’s Governor and directed Tennessee Williams’ The Glass Menagerie at The Actors Co-op in Hollywood. His work with actress/writer Michelle Azar, From Baghdad to Brooklyn, premiered at the United Solo Festival in New York City in 2017 and continues to tour nationally. Other credits include directing the live radio recordings of David Mamet’s American Buffalo, David Rambo’s The Tug of War and Ayad Akhtar’s Disgraced. He directed the Los Angeles revival of Archibald MacLeish’s J.B., and the West Coast premiere of Václav Havel’s The Beggar’s Opera. In addition, he directed the Philadelphia production of Glenn Wein’s Grandma Sylvia’s Funeral and worked with Tony Award-winning director Daniel Sullivan on Geffen Playhouse’s production of Hedda Gabler, starring Annette Bening. He directed more than 20 productions during his tenure as director of theater programs at New York’s French Woods Festival, a position he held for more than seven years. Kite serves on the Board of Governors of the L.A. Stage Alliance, holds an appointment as a Visiting Professor at the Shanghai Theatre Academy, and is the artistic director of the award-winning Buffalo Nights Theatre Company.
ROBERT HARLING (Author) made his directorial debut with The Evening Star for Paramount, which he also wrote for the screen based on Larry McMurty’s novel. The Evening Star reunited Shirley MacLaine and Jack Nicholson and co-stars Juliette Lewis, Bill Paxton, Scott Wolf, Miranda Richardson and Marion Ross. The Evening Star is the continuation of one of the most beloved and acclaimed movies of our time, Terms of Endearment. Before launching a successful stage and screenwriting career, Robert graduated from Tulane University School of Law, but instead of taking the bar exam, he opted to become an actor in New York. After years of productive work as an actor in voiceovers and commercials, Harling was inspired to write the highly acclaimed stage play Steel Magnolias, which was based on events from his personal life. Steel Magnolias continues to thrive in theatrical productions throughout the world. Immediately bridging a career from stage to screen, Harling adapted his original play into the popular film of the same title, which starred Sally Field, Julia Roberts, Shirley MacLaine, Olympia Dukakis, Dolly Parton and Daryl Hannah. Over the years, Mr. Harling has become a much sought-after screenwriter: other credits, to name a few, include Soapdish, which was based on Harling’s acting experience and starred Sally Field, Whoopi Goldberg and Robert Downey Jr., and First Wives Club for Paramount, starring Bette Midler, Goldie Hawn and Diane Keaton.
SUSAN ALBERT LOEWENBERG (Producing Director) is founder and Producing Director of L.A. Theatre Works, a non-profit media arts and theatre organization. Ms. Loewenberg has produced award-winning radio dramas, plays, and films in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, and London. Under her supervision, LATW has created the largest library of plays on audio in the world, garnering numerous awards from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the Writers Guild, The American Library Association, Publishers’ Weekly, and others. Ms. Loewenberg also serves as host and is the Executive Producer of LATW’s nationally distributed syndicated radio series, “L.A. Theatre Works,” broadcast on NPR stations nationwide. A graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, she has served on innumerable boards and panels, including the National Endowment for the Arts, California Arts Council, The Fund for Independence in Journalism in Washington D.C., and was co-chair of the League of Producers and Theatres of Greater Los Angeles. From 1996-2002, Ms. Loewenberg served during the Clinton administration on the Board of Directors for Federal Prison Industries, a presidential appointment, and served for several years as a member of the regional panel of the President’s Commission on White House Fellows. She is currently a member of the Board of Directors of The Center for Public Integrity and a Fellow of the Los Angeles Institute for the Humanities at USC. Ms. Loewenberg is the author of a number of articles that have appeared in American Theatre Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, and various professional journals.
ANNA LYSE ERIKSON (Associate Artistic Director) is point producer for all LATW productions, including live recordings, in-studio recordings, and tours. With Susan Loewenberg, she does all casting, manages rights and play selection, and generally oversees the artistic quality and development of LATW productions. Anna Lyse has worked as a casting director, acting coach, and dramaturg for numerous theatre, film, and radio projects in the LA area. She was previously the Consulting Artistic Director for Vagabond (Los Angeles), Development Director of the Morgan-Wixson Theatre (Santa Monica), and Director of Marketing and Outreach for the Independent Actors Theatre (Columbia, Missouri). Anna Lyse holds an M.A. in Theatre History, Theory and Criticism from the University of Colorado at Boulder and a B.A. in Theatre Performance from the University of Missouri.