About the CollaboratorsCynthia Croot (Director)
Earned her MFA from Columbia University. As a writer, director and activist, she’s been a guest artist at Bryn Mawr College, Harper College, Washington College, Bucknell University, the International Institute of Peace Educators in Rhodes, Greece, and El Rayo Experimenta, Argentina. Her stage adaptation of Djuna Barnes’s Nightwood led to a subsequent residency at UCross. Wyoming to develop the script Mata Hari. Croot’s recent directing credits include: Palestinian playwright Natalie Handal’s Details of Silence (Symphony Space), Haroldo de Campo’s Act of the Possessed (Guggenheim Museum), Ubu Roi (Brick Theater, Brooklyn), Spring Awakening (Whitman College), The Winter’s Tale, and Julius Caesar (Colorado Shakespeare Festival). She directed Suzan-Lori Park’s Venus at the Windybrow in Johannesburg, South Africa and her benefit staging of Venus at the Public Theater (NYC) featured Tim Robbins, Joe Morton and Kathleen Chalfant. In 2004/5 the Center for International Conflict Resolution (Columbia University) invited her to represent emerging U.S. artists in an exchange with Damascus University, Syria. This continuing collaboration aims to improve international relations through innovative use of the arts and media. Croot is a principal organizer for THAW (Theaters Against War). This fall she joins the faculty of Whitman College in Washington State, where she will be directing Strindberg’s The Ghost Sonata.
Steven Katz (Musical Director)
Has had a varied career in music. As a singer and pianist, his club act led to a year touring with the Manhattan Rhythm Kings and then eight years as the tenor voice and arranger for the international a capella doo-wop group JQ & the Bandits. The Bandits appeared on televison and at the White House and in concert everywhere from Broadway to Buckingham Palace. In recent years he has served as the resident musical director for River Rep Theatre Company on such shows as Godspell, The Mikado and Follies. A native New Yorker, Steven is currently a vocal coach to many talented artists who bring him great inspiration. He also continues to direct solo cabaret shows in venues around town, often alongside partner Warren Kelley.
Rachel Benbow Murdy
Is a co-creator and an original cast member of The Donkey Show: a Disco Midsummer Night's Dream developed by Project 400 Theater Group with director Diane Paulus and writer Randy Weiner. She played Oberon and Hermia during the 7 year off-Broadway run as well as touring with the show internationally. In NYC she created roles with Project 400 in The Karaoke Show: A Comedy of Errors, and Measure for Measure at Club El Flamingo, and in Swimming With Watermelons at the Vineyard Theater. She is a currently a company member and devisor-director at Conni’s Avant Garde Restaurant: a character driven environmental dinner party event at the Bushwick Starr. Recent credits include Marina in Uncle Vanya directed by Rachel Chavkin at Classic Stage Company, Gertrude Stein in Night at the Café at the Frist Museum, Nashville, TN, Dean Sarah Daniels in Rebecca Gilman's Spinning Into Butter and Enid in Roulette by Paul Weiss at Queens Theater in the Park, the Nurse in Romeo and Juliet for New Canaan Summer Theater, and Duke Senior/Duke Frederick in As You Like It at Opera House Arts in Stonington, Maine. Rachel has an MFA in acting from Columbia University.
Deborah Philips (Director)
Over the last two years Deborah has collaborated on more than a dozen theatre projects. She is a founding member of Conni's Avant Garde Restaurant, a recurring & evolving salon-inspired event of performance and food. With the cast of Conni's, she created A Night at the Café for the Frist Museum in Nashville, TN. As an Associate Artist with Genesius Theatre Group this summer she directed Week 36 of Suzan-Lori Parks year-long play-cycle 365 Days/365 Plays as a site-specific performance at Lincoln Center Theatre and the Public Theatre. Deborah has done dramaturgy for innovative Shakespeare productions as well as original adaptations for the stage. She is a "Reactionary Director" with Epiphany Theatre Company, and directed in their 24 Hour Plague Festival. Deborah studied at Royal Holloway, University of London and holds a BA cum laude with high honor in theatre arts from Mount Holyoke College.
Margi Sharp (Vincent Millay)
has performed as a singer and actor in Off-Off Broadway venues such as HERE, PS 122, and the Connelly Theater and regionally at the Orlando UCF Shakespeare Festival and at the Opera House Arts in Stonington, Maine. Favorite roles include Hermione in A Winters Tale, Kate in Taming of the Shrew and Madeline in a new play Freudian Slips. She has worked on plays with director and puppet master Ralph Lee, regional directors Dennis Delaney and Russell Treyz, and internationally acclaimed director Andrei Serban. Margi received her BA from Duke University in Drama and English as well as a Certificate of the Arts for her work in dance and theater. She also holds an MFA from Columbia University in Acting. She is a co-founder and the Producing Director of Magis Theatre Company, which had their Off Broadway debut last year with an adaptation of C.S. Lewis’ The Great Divorce. She is also a member of Crossing Jamaica Avenue theater company and has performed numerous roles with them such as Edna in Chiori Miyagawa’s Awakening, and most recently the Contemporary Woman in Thousand Years Waiting.