Artist Bios: Cast
Sarah Bary (Persephone/Loki/Ensemble) is excited to be working on another Brelby production! She was previously seen on stage in Wolves of Sherwood, Big Fish, and Return to Rosie’s Pub. She would like to thank her family and friends for all of their support during the process of this show. Sarah would also like to thank Brelby for this opportunity to dive into Deadland. Enjoy the show!
Eric Evans (Virgil/Hathaway/Ensemble) is going into his second year at GCU, with a major in Forensic Science and a Theatre minor. This is his Brelby debut, and some of his previous roles include Ted in Peter and the Starcatcher and Kolenkhov from You Can’t Take it With You. His hobbies include throwing knives and reading Stephen King novels.
Kevin Fenderson (Mr. Lethe) is stoked to be back on the Brelby stage with this amazing team! Favorite roles include: Mitch Mahoney (Spelling Bee, Brelby) and Man 1 (Now. Here. This., A/C Theatre Company). When not on the theatrical stage, you can find him performing throughout the valley with his band Owning November. He’s currently working on his first EP (look for it in August-ish)! He’d like to thank you for supporting local theatre. Enjoy the show!
Allison Foulk (Little Lu/Ensemble) is real excited to tap into her maniacally dark side as “Little Lu” in her debut performance at Brelby. Recently, she’s performed in Leading Ladies at Desert Foothills, A Murder is Announced and It’s a Wonderful Life at Starlight Community Theater, and Angels Among Us, a short film debuting in film festival circuits this year. Despite her love of humans of all ages, nearly getting to “double dead” a whole lotta teenagers has been a blast—thanks, Shelby and Helen, for trusting this non-musical actor with “Beat and Broken Spirits.”
Jen Gantwerker (Hel/Ensemble) is flattered to be playing a goddess, especially one this intimidating. She was seen most recently on the Brelby stage as Minerva Schlitz in spy love you, and behind the scenes as the Prop Designer for Big Fish. Outside the walls of Brelby, she performs with Murder and a Meal dinner theatre and the sketch comedy troupe The Cosmonauts. She does other stuff too. Thanks to her pretty awesome friends and family, this terribly impressive cast and crew, and also to James for asking, “Are you auditioning for Jasper?”
Hanna Grossenbacher (Beatrix/Ensemble) is an eighteen-year-old incoming freshman at the University of the Pacific. She is studying to become an English major. She’s been involved in the theater world for eleven years now. Her most current credits include playing Beatrice Rasponi in The Servant of Two Masters, Ida in Honk Jr., Audrey 2 in Little Shop of Horrors, and Emily Brent in And Then There Were None. She would like to send a thank you to her mother, Kim, and thank her father, Terry, her friends, and her cinanamon apple Mackenzie for their constant, never ending support.
Leigh Hager (Cerberus/Ensemble) is excited for her debut performance on the Brelby stage and final performance in AZ. Recent favorites include Company (Marta) and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (Borislava the Spy) at Starlight Community Theater. She recently assistant directed The Velveteen Rabbit at SCT and loved every moment of it! Leigh thoroughly enjoys performing, designing, and directing and hopes to be able to continue her artistic endeavors in IL. Enjoy the show!
Chris Jackson (Brutus/Ensemble) is taking the stage again for the first time in 2 years in Brelby Theatre Company’s production of Jasper In Deadland. When he’s not working on his photography career, he also likes to spend his spare time designing clothes, and running lights for Compel Church.
Tiffany Martinez (Blind Justice/Ensemble) is excited for Jasper in Deadland, her first Brelby show! She has been looking forward to this show since she first heard the music and is ecstatic to be involved in bringing this show to Arizona! Tiffany has spent the last year and a half diving wholeheartedly back into theater. Some of her favorite recent roles include Babe in The Pajama Game, Ethel in Footloose, and Edith in Pirates of Penzance. Tiffany lavishes much praise and thanks on her husband who continues to support her passion for theater every day!
Falin Ossipinsky (Gretchen/Agnes) is incredibly stoked to be a part of Jasper in Deadland, making this her fourth show here at Brelby! Falin’s choreography credits include Confetti (SYT performance troupe), You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown (SYT), Company (SCT), Big Fish (BTC), and the 2018 AriZoni Awards Ceremony opening number! On stage she has recently been seen in Cabaret (SYT) as Lulu, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson (SYT) as the Tour Guide, and Heathers (BTC) as New Wave Girl. She sends many thanks to the wonderful Shelby for all she does, all of the cast and crew involved in this beautiful show, her family, and Jack for being a pretty sweet stage/life partner!
Jesse Pike (Eurydice/Ensemble) is 19 years old and is attending ASU for Biochemistry in the fall. She was last seen in I Love You You’re Perfect Now Change at PVCC, All Shook Up at Theater Works, and Janet in The Drowsy Chaperone at ACAA. She would like to thank Shelby, Helen, Max, and James for this incredible opportunity and wonderful experience. Jesse would also like to thank her incredible family, friends, and boyfriend for their never ending support. This show now has such a special place in my heart and I’m so excited for you to experience it too!
Josh Pike (Dante/Cerberus/Ensemble) is currently a sophomore at Arizona Conservatory for the Arts and Academics. This is his first Brelby show, but his past roles include Dickon in The Secret Garden (ACAA), Wilbur in Charlotte’s Web (Arizoni nomination), and Mr. Tumnus in The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe (Arizoni nomination) both at TheaterWorks. He would like to thank Mom, Jesse and Dad for their support and he would like to thank Max, Helen, James, and Shelby for giving him this opportunity! Also thanks big papa Joe Biden.
Anthony Rozzen (Pluto/Ensemble) was very excited to start this show at Brelby, having it be his second show. He is 19 years old and has nothing better to do rather than pretend to be other people in front of a crowd. “I like not being me,” he often says in the dark corner of his room.
Faith Sterling (Ammut/Ensemble) is super excited to be making her Brelby debut! She has recently been in Les Mis at Chandler High (Madame Thenardier) where she won an ASU Gammage award. Other credits include Sampson in Romeo and Juliet, Anita Bath in Rock of Ages, Lady in White in The Bottom of the Lake (NYA Award), and more. She will be attending The University of Northern Colorado in the fall studying acting. She would like to give a shout-out to her father who is always looking down on her.
Jack Taylor (Jasper) is excited to be performing in his 4th show at Brelby. He’s been seen on the Brelby stage before as Harold in Fly By Night and Ram in Heathers. He’s also been seen on the Spotlight Youth Theatre stage as CB in Dog Sees God and Mercutio in Romeo & Juliet, which earned him his first AriZoni award. He would like to thank the Jasper in Deadland directing team, his family, friends, and Falin.
Artist Bios: Production Team
Shelby Elise Maticic (Director/Choreographer/Costume Designer) is a Zoni nominated playwright and designer. She received her B.S. in Theatre Performance from NAU, and her MFA in Arts Entrepreneurship and Management from ASU. Shelby is proud to serve as the Vice President of the ariZoni Awards of Theatre Excellence. Select Brelby Acting Credits: Peter and the Starcatcher (Molly Aster) She Kills Monsters (Agnes), Twelfth Night (Viola), Playing Games (Mel), Fangirl (Sophia), Windfall (Olivia). Select Brelby Directing credits: Godspell, Picasso at the Lapin Agile, Little Women: the musical, Little Shop of Horrors, Ghost the Musical, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Dogfight, Heathers the Musical. Extra love to Brian and Rory.
Helen Morris (Music Director), a Music Performance & Secondary Education student, is so excited to be part of this incredible production! Helen is a musical theatre workshop instructor for the Arizona Thespian Society, where she teaches musical writing, music theory, and audition coaching & techniques to high school and college students from Arizona, California, and New Mexico. Recent performance credits include Sweeney Todd (2019), Company (2018), A Murder is Announced (2018), and more. She would like to send out a huge thanks to Shelby, Max, James, the cast, and to you, the audience, for keeping theatre alive! Thank you!
James Beneze (Assistant Director) is making his second venture into the world of directing. He is the newly appointed Volunteer Coordinator for Brelby Theatre Co. and has been a fixture with the company for the past few years. A regular behind the scenes, he can usually be found as a stage manager or props designer. He was last seen on stage in Powerhouse and Return to Rosie’s Pub and can be seen this August in Alice’s Canvas.
Max Plata (Stage Manager) is thrilled to be spending his summer in Deadland! He’d like to thank Shelby & the whole team for welcoming him back and trusting him to care for a show as big, crazy, and special as this one. Max is a student at Arizona State University studying Theatre (Playwriting). He is the resident Assistant Stage Manager for ASU’s Music Theatre & Opera program under the mentorship of Kate Leonard. Keep an eye out for one of Max’s upcoming projects at ASU – the Arizona premiere of another of Ryan Scott Oliver’s works – 35mm: A Musical Exhibition!
Brian Maticic (Executive Director/Scenic Designer) received his B.S. in Theatre Performance from NAU. Acting: Black Stache/Peter and the Starcatcher (ariZoni nomination), Robert/12 Days of Christmas, Bob/Revenge of the Space Pandas, Duke Orsino/Twelfth Night, Bill/Poseidon’s Regret. Directing: She Kills Monsters, Love’s Labours Lost, Be a Good Little Widow, Princess and the Pirate, Beyond Musketeers: Utopia Lost, missing grace, The Oz Chronicles. Playwright: Playing Games, Non-fat Soy Peppermint Mocha Latte … With Sprinkles, 12 Days of Christmas, Beyond Musketeers: Utopia Lost, Windfall, Depend on Me.
Tim McCandless (Lighting Designer) is thrilled to be back designing lights for Brelby! He previously designed lights for Ghost: The Musical and The Pledge at Brelby. Tim is the theatre director and teacher at Saguaro High School. He would like to thank his grandparents for introducing him to the wonderful world of theatre.
Rebecca Ulbrich (Prop Designer) is proud to be the Props designer for Jasper in Deadland and has had so much fun helping to create this rich underworld. Past credits include As You Like It (props and sound), Much Ado About Nothing (props) and spy love you (props). Rebecca would like the thank Shelby for taking her along on this journey, the designers for pushing her to strive for the best and the actors for bringing this world to life. Rebecca would also like to give a huge special thanks to Anabel for helping her bring her props to life and her husband for giving up time together during this process. Enjoy the show!
Anabel Olguin (Assistant Prop Designer) is super excited to be a part of this world premier. She was most recently seen on the Brelby stage as Malbete in Wolves of Sherwood, Renee in 12 Days of Christmas and as Numbers in Spy Love You. She hopes you all enjoy this fantastic show.
Kenzie Laughlin (Wardrobe Supervisor) is a BFA Design/Tech major at the University of Arizona with an emphasis in costume design and a minor in history. She is so excited to be working on this show. Past credits include working as head of wardrobe for UA’s Erased and On The Verge, and acting as a first hand for ART’s productions of Top Girls and Richard III. She would love to thank Max and Shelby for hooking her up with this sweet opportunity, and also everyone in the Design/Tech program that endlessly teach and support her.
Sophia Rodriguez (Sound Mixing) is excited to be apart of this amazing and unique show! She’d like to thank the cast, crew, and creative team behind Jasper for giving her the opportunity to be apart of something this Summer. She is a Sophomore at Arizona State University studying Theatre. Sophia was apart of the crew for Brelby’s production of Heathers in 2018 and is glad to be back to bring this show to life! Shout out to Maxwell and his bunny son, Tucker.
Sam Jones (Run Crew) is grateful for the opportunity to work on such a fun and exciting show! This will be the first show Sam has worked on since graduating from Shadow Ridge High School this last May. She looks forward to seeing this show come together and working with the amazing cast and crew!
Artist Bios: Authors
Hunter Foster (Book) is an Artistic Associate at Bucks County Playhouse where he has directed Company, Ain’t Misbehavin’, The Buddy Holly Story, National Pastime, The Rocky Horror Show (2013, 2014 and 2016), Summer of ’42, and It’s a Wonderful Life. His other directing credits include Cabaret, My Fair Lady (Cape Playhouse), Grease (North Carolina Theatre), Spamalot (Casa Manana) and has directed productions of Million Dollar Quartet for the Ogunquit Playhouse, Gateway Playhouse and Westchester Broadway Theatre. In the spring of 2017, he will direct the play adaptation of the movie Clue for Bucks County Playhouse. As a book writer he has written the book to the musical Jasper in Deadland, which played at the 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle in Spring 2015 following its world premiere at Prospect Theater Company in NYC. Hunter also wrote the book to the Off-Broadway musical Summer of ’42 which opened at the Variety Arts Theatre in New York City and was nominated for an Outer Critic Award for Best New Off-Broadway Musical. Other recent book writing credits include The Circus in Winter (Goodspeed Musicals), Clyde and Bonnie: A Folktale (New York Musical Theatre Festival, Aurora Theatre), The Hollow (Signature Theatre) and Blue Ridge Sky. As an actor, he has appeared on Broadway in The Bridges of Madison County, Hands on a Hardbody, Million Dollar Quartet, The Producers, Little Shop of Horrors (Tony nomination), Urinetown, Les Miserables, Footloose, Grease and King David. Hunter is a graduate of the University of Michigan (BFA in Musical Theatre).
Ryan Scott Oliver (Book/Music & Lyrics) is a 2011 Lucille Lortel Award Nominee, a 2009 Jonathan Larson Grant recipient and wrote the music and lyrics for 35mm: A Musical Exhibition, Mrs. Sharp (2008 Richard Rodgers Award Winner, at Playwrights Horizons starring Jane Krakowski, dir. by Michael Greif), Darling (featured on the “Bound for Broadway” episode of NBC’s The Apprentice), the song cycle Out of My Head, Quit India (commissioned by UCLA), the music for Angus Oblong’s The Debbies, a commission for Disney Theatricals, The Frog Prince Continued (commissioned by Chicago’s Emerald City Theatre) and Jasper in Deadland (commissioned by the Pasadena Musical Theatre Program).
A collection of his work, Rated RSO, has been seen across the country, playing the Kennedy Center, Joe’s Pub, New York Musical Theatre Festival, and Pace University among others, and his work has also been heard at the Writer’s Guild Awards (perf. Kristen Schaal), Off-Broadway in TheatreWorksUSA’s We the People (Summer 2010 at the Lucille Lortel), on the hit YouTube TV show The Battery’s Down (“This is Your Life” among others) and in showcases presented by Weston Playhouse, Summer Play Festival (SPF), The York Theatre, Goodspeed Musicals, William Finn & Barrington Stages, New York Theatre Barn, Monday Nights New Voices, the Festival of New American Musicals in Los Angeles, Oklahoma City University (STRIPPED), Seattle’s New Voices, and more.
In 2012, he premiered 35mm: A Musical Exhibition based on the work of photographer Matthew Murphy, which has been preserved as an original cast recording by the Ghostlight label. The piece is currently being licensed and has received productions around the US (including Baltimore, MD; Dayton, OH; among others), and will open around the world in 2013 (including London and Canada).
A proud member of A.S.C.A.P., Ryan is an adjunct professor at Pace University in New York, and Artistic Director of the Pasadena Musical Theatre Program in California, where he also teaches Songwriting, Playwriting, and Musical Theatre History. B.A. Music Composition, UCLA; M.F.A. Musical Theatre Writing, NYU-Tisch; RSO has been mentored or taught by Stephen Schwartz, Lynn Ahrens, Stephen Flaherty, William Finn, Jeanine Tesori, Michael-John LaChiusa, Margo Lion, and more.