A rarely performed musical adaptation by Tom Waits of one of the most influential plays ever written, Georg Büchner’s classic Woyzeck. When a soldier returns home from the war, desperate poverty leads him to take odd jobs that gradually tear him apart. As he starts to lose his mind, his love for Marie becomes increasingly obsessive. With his poetic combination of blues, jazz, and vaudeville, Tom Waits, along with his wife and collaborator Kathleen Brennan, has created a musical both carnivalesque and tender. Directed by Jonathan Fox.
Franz Woyzeck is a military barber who has lived a poor and difficult life. He has a child out of wedlock with a woman named Marie, and spends his time trying to make ends meet by performing odd tasks for his Captain, and participating in medical experiments with an eccentric Doctor. These tribulations have led him to a breaking point – including recurring apocalyptic visions.
When Marie’s eye starts to wander toward a Drum Major, Woyzeck seeks counsel from his friend, Andres, and receives some unsolicited advice from the Doctor and the Captain.
As Woyzeck’s insanity grows, his actions become wild and sporadic, leading him down a dark and violent path.
Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan have created a tender and carnivalesque score that is uniquely suited to the classic German play. Most songs can be heard on the “Blood Money” album, and include vaudeville numbers such as “Misery’s the River of the World,” love songs like “All the World is Green,” and hilarious Irish drinking songs such as “Just the Way We Are Boys.”
Phillip Brandon (Carnival Announcer) is returning to the beautiful city of Santa Barbara, having not been here since the tender age of 2, and is very excited to be making his debut with Ensemble Theatre Company. Broadway National Tours: The Color Purple (Preacher/Ol’ Mister). Regional/International Theatre: Tarzan (Kerchak), Ain’t Misbehavin’ (Ken), Ragtime (Coalhouse), Festival of The Lion King (Scar), and Meet Me in St. Louis. In addition to numerous nationally-branded commercials, voiceovers and TV, he recently wrapped his 5th year of sold out arena tours as a member of the multi-platinum rock group, Trans Siberian Orchestra. He currently has a Billboard Smooth Jazz Most Added Single entitled “Sail On.” Next up: Phillip will be headlining the iconic Catalina Bar & Grill in Hollywood, CA on Wednesday, May 13th. www.phillipbrandon.com
Steven Good (Drum Major) is an actor, singer, and musician originally from Gilroy, California. He studied music composition and operatic voice at UC Santa Cruz before achieving an MFA in acting at Harvard where he performed in the musicals Once, and Prometheus Bound, as well as a run of Alice vs. Wonderland at the Moscow Art Theater. Since moving to LA, Steven has shot a series regular role in the pilot “Hallowed Halls,” guest appeared in the CW’s “Hart of Dixie,” recorded and written on several studio albums, starred in multiple readings of new works, and has appeared in national and international commercials for Carl’s Jr., New Balance, and Sony. Steven is a front man, guitarist, and founding member of the rock group Cylvia. Follow him on twitter @thestevengood and like him on Facebook to keep up with performances and film/television appearances. www.stevengood.net.
Matt Gottlieb (Doctor) was last seen at Ensemble as Mark Rothko in Red. He recently appeared at the Fountain Theater as Ben Weeks in The Normal Heart, which garnered him an LA WEEKLY Nomination for Best Supporting Actor. He has performed with A Noise Within, ACT, Berkeley Rep, The Intiman, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, San Jose Rep, Sacramento Theater Co., Marin Theatre Company, Laguna Playhouse, The Colony Theatre, Pacific Resident Theatre, The Odyssey, Kingsmen Shakespeare Co., and at the Mark Taper Forum. He used to live in NY, and performed at the New York Shakespeare Festival, Circle Rep, Soho Rep, Long Wharf. Television appearances include “CSI,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Wings,” “JAG,” “Nash Bridges,” “The Practice,” “Boston Public,” “Still Standing,” “Without a Trace,” and others. Movies include Sheldon in Frank D. Gilroy’s The Luckiest Man in the World and the leading role in James Merendino’s The Handyman. He has received several Ovation and LADCC award nominations for both acting and directing. He dedicates this performance to his father, Saul.
Matthew Henerson (Captain) has appeared regionally at the Ahmanson, ACT, A Noise Within, Celebration Theatre, Deaf West, East West Players, International City Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, Main Street Theatre Company, Northern Stage, San Diego Repertory, San Jose Repertory, and South Coast Repertory, as well as at Shakespeare festivals in Arizona, Colorado, Marin, San Francisco, Santa Cruz, and Utah. Recent work: the world premiere of Serrano at the Matrix Theatre, Fluellen in Henry V at the New Fortune Theatre Company, and the first national tour of Flashdance: The Musical. Film and Television credits include “The Bernie Mac Show,” “Torn Apart,” “Hung,” A Christmas Carol, Mars Needs Moms, Ticking Clock, and Disney’s upcoming Jungle Book. He has a Supporting Actor Dramalogue Award and a Craig Noel Award for Best Director. He holds a BA from Yale and an MFA for UCSD. Matt lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Nancy, and their daughter, Miriam.
Matthew MacNelly (Andres) is an actor and musician currently based in Los Angeles. Regional Credits include Three Plays in a Tattoo Shop, Our Town (The Trip), Glengarry Glen Ross (La Jolla Playhouse), Titus Andronicus, June Moon, The Storm, Hookman, A Man, His Wife and His Hat (UCSD), Time Sensitive (Guthrie Theater), Much Ado About Nothing (Folger Shakespeare Library), and Fucking A (Studio Theater, DC). New York Credits include What We Know (Shrunken Shakespeare), Washougal, My Heart (Communal Spaces), True Believer (TheatreLab), and Fourteen Flights (NYC Fringe Festival/SoHo Playhouse). Matt received his BA from Georgetown University and his MFA from the University of California, San Diego. He is thrilled to be making his Ensemble Theatre Company debut. mattmacnelly.com.
Gina Manziello (Marie) has performed in Los Angeles in If You Can Get To Buffalo and The Wallowa Project (Son of Semele Ensemble), What of the Night? (The Vagrancy), Culture Clash’s The Birds (Getty Villa), Small Craft Warnings and Exit the King (City of West Hollywood), Don Juan Dispenso (Tony Tanner), Komitas (Atwater Village Theater), Surviving Mama (Edgemar Center), and BOTH (Open Fist). She is a graduate of USC’s MFA in Acting program, where she appeared in productions of The Caucasian Chalk Circle, The Dispute, The Constant Players (David Bridel, Dir.), The Serpent, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Andy Robinson, Dir.), and The Last Days of Judas Iscariot (Andrei Belgrader, Dir.). Other credits include Caviar on Credit (Guthrie Theater), the title role in Robert Xavier Rodridguez’s Frida (Society for New Music, Syracuse), and numerous musical theater productions. She has won several awards for her work on film. TV credits include “Leverage” and “Gilded Lilies.”
Willie Simpson (Karl) is thrilled to be a part of this rarely performed show and make his first appearance with Ensemble Theatre Company. Willie moved to Santa Barbara in 2008 and made his debut as Rod in the hit Avenue Q at the grand reopening of the Garvin Theatre. Favorite performance credits include Lt. Joseph Cable in South Pacific, a live concert re-recording of Stan Kenton’s Back To Balboa, backing vocalist for jazz legends Diane Schuur, Tommy Newsom, Don Shelton and John Hendricks at the Berkeley and Playboy Jazz Festivals, and appearing in several original musicals such as We Love You Sonja (Henie), and Among The Chosen Few with Cal Rep. Willie serves on the Board of Directors at Elements Theatre Collective which brings free, accessible theatre to greater Santa Barbara using intimate offbeat venues, and also provides musical performance opportunities to elementary-aged local children. Raised in Boulder, cultivated in Long Beach and Berlin, Willie is elated to call Santa Barbara home.
Tiffany Story (Margaret) has performed in over 200 theater productions, films, and commercials. She’s thrilled to be performing in this gloriously renovated theater, where years ago she’d gather with her three friends to watch weird foreign films. She was last seen in the sold out run of Boeing Boeing as Gloria in Circle Bar B’s final show. On that same stage she also appeared in Ghost of a Chance, Noises Off, Return Engagements, Sylvia (Independent Award), It Had to be You, Pump Boys & Dinettes, The Odd Couple, I Love You You’re Perfect, Now Change, Rumors, Nunsense, and 1940’s Radio Hour (Independent Award). She also could be caught in other venues like the Santa Barbara City College Theater Group in August Osage County, You Can’t Take It With You, The Laramie Project, Anton in Show Business, Wild Oats, Seascape, The Buddy Holly Story, and Gunfighter: a Gulf War Chronicle, as well as several Center Stage productions including Bob Potter’s The Last Empire, The Last Liberal (Independent Award), and the original rock musical Success (Independent Award). Tiffany sings in her favorite band, The Henderson Brothers, and dances with the local La Boheme Dance Troupe. Tiffany dedicates everything she does to her mother, Barbara.
Stephen Van Dorn (Woyzeck) recently portrayed John Jasper/Clive Paget in Actors Co-op’s production of Drood, which he also directed. He’s taken turns in Lend Me a Tenor, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, The Learned Ladies, and Silence! The Musical, directed by Tony Award winner Christopher Gatelli, wherein he played serial killer Buffalo Bill/Jaime Gumb, opposite Christine Lakin and Davis Gaines. Recent film credits include Turnaround Jake, and A Chance of Rain. Van Dorn holds degrees in Sacred Music and Theatre Arts from Bethel University, in St. Paul, MN, and hails from Broomfield, Colorado, where he grew up singing, dancing, and acting in the Colorado Children’s Chorale. He has performed for Presidents and First Ladies, and under the batons of Zubin Mehta, Robert Shaw and Peter Matz. Soli Deo Gloria. www.stephenvandorn.net.
Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan (Composers/Lyricists) Tom Waits was born in Pomona, California, to schoolteachers Alma Fern (Johnson) and Jesse Frank Waits. Described as one of the last beatniks of the contemporary music, Tom Waits – in fact – had two separate careers. From 1973 (LP “Closing Time”) to 1983 (“One From The Heart” soundtrack), he recorded nine LPs for Asylum Records, writing songs mainly in the manner of Tin Pan Alley, mixing them with jazz and blues. Extraordinarily, he never produced a hit, but he earned a cult following all over the world. The second part of his career coincided with his marriage to Kathleen Brennan, a former writer for Francis Ford Coppola. Brennan is credited as a co-writer and collaborator on numerous songs and projects written since her marriage to Waits. She is generally regarded as the catalyst for Waits’ more experimental sound beginning with the album “Swordfishtrombones.”
Georg Büchner (Playwright) was born on October 17, 1813 in Germany. His father, a scientist and rationalist, primed him from an early age with a scientific approach to the world, which would later manifest itself in the sharp, realistic, and critical nature of his writing. He began his medical training at Strasbourg in 1831, where he became clandestinely engaged to Minna Jaegle, the daughter of a pastor. Because of his radical political involvement, Büchner was eventually forced to flee Germany altogether for Zurich. After settling there, he relinquished his political fervor and developed a politically-disillusioned outlook that manifested itself deeply in his three plays, Danton’s Death, Leonce and Lena, and especially his ultimate effort, Woyzeck. Despite the short length of his literary career, Büchner contributed immeasurably to the dramatic canon, but never considered himself a playwright by profession. Buchner died of an undiagnosed fever, probably typhus, at the age of 23 on February 19, 1837.
Jonathan Fox (Director/Executive Artistic Director) joined ETC in 2006. He directed ETC’s productions of Amadeus, Metamorphoses, A Little Night Music, The Liar, Crime and Punishment, Creditors, Underneath the Lintel, Ghosts, Loot, The Glass Menagerie, Buried Child, Striking 12, Take Me Out, Old Wicked Songs, Thérèse Raquin, This Is How It Goes and Visiting Mr. Green. He is the recipient of seven Indy Awards. Recent European productions include Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, A Streetcar Named Desire, Visiting Mr. Green and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof at the English Theatre of Frankfurt, and Old Wicked Songs, Crimes of the Heart, and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof at the Vienna English Theatre. Before joining ETC, Mr. Fox spent 12 years with Two River Theater Company in New Jersey, which he helped establish in 1994. He served as managing director of the company from 1994-99, and subsequently became its artistic director. For Two River, he directed over a dozen acclaimed productions. His production of The Umbrellas of Cherbourg was profiled in American Theatre Magazine, as was his festival of work by Samuel Beckett. His directing work has been seen in New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Cologne, and has received critical acclaim in The New York Times, Variety, the LA Times, and other publications. He received his MFA from Columbia University, and is a recipient of the prestigious Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Fellowship. He has served as an adjunct faculty member in theatre departments at UCSB, Columbia University, University of Utah, and Monmouth University.
Sean Alexander Bart (Music Director) is honored to work with Ensemble Theatre. Originally from San Francisco, he’s worked onstage and off with many top NorCal theaters, including Berkeley Rep, Theatreworks, and ACT. He received his BA in Vocal Performance from SF Conservatory of Music, also excelling in piano and acting. Today he is a sought-after vocal coach, music director, actor and accompanist. Sean tours frequently with Ragazzi Boys Chorus, recently to Montreal and Cuba, and this coming summer to South Africa. He was on the Notre Dame de Namur University Vocal Department staff for classical and musical theater. His extensive experience in other genres includes pop and rock projects, jazz, cabaret and a large assortment of original songs and compositions. He is currently collaborating on a piano/voice-duo reimagining of Queen songs. Sean became a Tom Waits fan upon first hearing “T’aint No Sin” as a teenager.
Heather Castillo (Choreographer) is thrilled to be making her choreographic debut with Ensemble Theatre in Santa Barbara. Credits include Meet Me In St. Louis, The Sound of Music (Ovation Nominee for Best Musical in 2011), She Loves Me (Backstage Critics Pick), Loving Repeating (Critics Pick of the Week, LA Times), Suessical (Best Choreography from BroadwayWorld.com), Cinderella, The King and I, 1940’s Radio Hour, The Fix, Annie, and For a Look or a Touch. Heather is a dance researcher and is currently working on a film documentary focusing on the lives of ensemble dancers during Golden Era movie musicals from 1940-1965. She is a Professor of Performing Arts in Dance at California State University Channel Islands.
François-Pierre Couture (Scenic Designer) originally from Canada, discovered his love for theatre and the arts in the extraordinary diverse cultural scene of Montréal. Work from artist such as Robert Lepage, Jocelyne Montpetit, Cirque du Soleil, Lalala Human Step, Dominic Champagne and Ariane Mnouchkine contributed in shaping his visual aesthetic and taste. After completing a degree in Theatre and Fine Arts at Concordia University, he set sail to California to complete a Masters degree at UCLA in Scenic and Lighting design. Little did he know he would discover in Los Angeles a rich artistic milieu that would soon become his new home. Since then he has worked continuously around the U.S. Some of his works include the scenery and lighting design for the critically acclaimed production of Love’s Labour’s Lost at the Actor’s Gangs Theater, scenery for Médée for the Chicago Opera Theater, Scenery, lighting, and projections for Maestro at the Geffen Playhouse, scenery for Beethoven as I knew Him at the San Diego Old Globe (also at the Geffen Playhouse, Chicago Water Tower, Phoenix and Tucson Herberger Theatre Center, Cleveland Bolton Theatre), lighting for Opus at Ensemble Theatre Company, scenery for 1951-2006 at the LATC, lighting for Dementia at the LATC, scenery for Jewtopia at the Greenway Court Theatre, scenery and lighting for KLÜB and Gulliver’s Travels at the Actors’ Gang Theatre, scenery and lighting for Wounded, Spring Awakening, and Survived at the Power House Theatre. Mr. Couture has been nominated for an Ovation Award for his scenic design of A Picasso at the Los Angeles Geffen Playhouse, received the 2010 Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle for Sustained Achievement in Set Design, received a Garland Award for the scenery of The Quality of Life, also at the Geffen Playhouse, was nominated for Best Scenic Design for Stranger at the 2010 LA Weekly Awards, and received the 2010 Ticket Holder Award for Best Lighting Design for Solitude at the LATC. For complete information, please visit www.fpcouture.com.
Kate Bergh (Costume Design) is delighted to be designing her third production at Ensemble Theatre Company where she has designed Metamorphoses and A Little Night Music Kate has worked on several productions at The Colony Theatre including The Lion in Winter, The Morini Strad, Blame it on Beckett, The Savannah Disputations directed by Cameron Watson, American Fiesta, and Old Wicked Songs. At Pasadena Playhouse she designed Sleepless in Seattle: the Musical, Under My Skin, Art, South Street, and Amahl and the Night Visitors. At Reprise Theatre she designed Cabaret, for which she received a Backstage Garland Award for Best Costume Design, Gigi, How to Succeed in Business…, The Fantasticks, directed by Jason Alexander, They’re Playing Our Song, I Love My Wife, and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. At The Geffen Playhouse she designed Next Fall and Yes, Prime Minister Her recent foray into the world of science fiction had her designing 11 one-act plays in two weeks for Sci-Fest 2014 and her videos of Firefall and World of Tanks Rap Battle are showing all over the Internet. Two of her recent short films, Cash for Gold and In Confidence, have been on the festival circuit. She received an Ovation Nomination for her design of Shrek: the Musical for 3-D Theatricals, and has been named “Costume Designer of the Year” two years in a row. Her most rewarding assignment is designing for the “Night at Sardi’s” Alzheimer’s Benefit every year – always a challenge, a highlight, and for a very good cause. Kate is honored to be a part of this production of Woyzeck at Ensemble Theatre Company.
Pablo Santiago-Brandwein (Lighting Design) has enjoyed over 15 years experience lighting for stage, film, and TV. Pablo is nominated for the 2015 Stage Raw Award for Best Lighting Design for his work on The Brothers Size at Fountain Theater. In addition, he was nominated for a 2014 Ovation Award for Best Lighting Design for Premeditation at LATC and was nominated for the 2014 LA Weekly Award for Best Lighting Design for Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde at Actors Co-Op Theater. He won a “Memorable Design” Scenie Award in 2014 for The Brothers Size and Time Stands Still at Chance Theater. He is also the winner of the Cirque Du Soleil Scholarship Award. His work has been seen at Disney Hall, LA Philharmonic, and Latino Theater Co. at the Getty Villa. Pablo is a Lecturer in Lighting Design at the Department of Theater, Film and Television at UCLA. For more information on his film work, check his IMDB profile, or visit pablosantiagodesign.com.
Julie Ferrin (Sound Designer) is honored to be with Ensemble Theatre Company and the New Vic for another fantastic show! It is always great to work in Santa Barbara! Julie recently designed Suessical, starring Cathy Rigby, with 3D Theatricals, Jesus Christ Superstar with DOMA Theatre Company and the Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer tour, with HERKON Entertainment. She is president of Sound Advice LLC, a sound design, engineering and rental company. Please visit www.soundadvicedesigns.com for more information and follow on Facebook at Sound Advice LLC. Julie is a proud member of USA 829. Thank you for supporting the arts and enjoy the show!
Amy Lieberman, CSA (Casting) has worked with Ensemble Theatre Company for seven seasons. The recipient of six CSA Artios Awards, with a total of twelve nominations. Broadway: The Dinner Party, Flower Drum Song, Big River. Recent Past: Reprise Theatre Company for three seasons. Center Theatre Group (Mark Taper Forum/Ahmanson/Kirk Douglas) 1999–2006, 1983-1989. Many regional theatres throughout the states as well as locally. L.A. TheatreWorks, Pasadena Playhouse, Ojai Playwrights Conference, The Granada, KCRW, Sundance Theatre Lab, Deaf West, Theatre@Boston Court, Falcon Theatre, Hollywood Theatre of the Ear. Film and television throughout the 90’s. Visiting Assoc. Prof. UCLA- MFA 3rd yr. graduate program 2007-2013.
Anna Jensen (Dramaturg) happily returns to Ensemble after serving as Dramaturg for Intimate Apparel, The Best Brothers, Amadeus, Looped, Red, Metamorphoses, Good People, A Little Night Music, Creditors, Crime and Punishment, and The Liar. In March of 2013, Austin College in Texas produced her new translation and adaptation of When We Dead Awaken by Henrik Ibsen. She has her bachelor’s degree from UC Berkeley, where she majored in Rhetoric, focusing on the rhetoric of historical discourse. Her master’s degree was from UC Santa Barbara, where she wrote on the playwright August Strindberg’s dramas as interpreted by the film and stage director Ingmar Bergman. Her dissertation research, also at UC Santa Barbara, considers how Norse Saga material was instrumental to Henrik Ibsen’s dramaturgy. She teaches full-time in Santa Barbara at the Brooks Institute.
Aleah Van Woert (Stage Manager) is pleased to be stage managing her third season with ETC. Previous credits include Black Pearl Sings!, Crime and Punishment, Bell, Book and Candle, The Liar, The Year of Magical Thinking, Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune, A Little Night Music, Good People, Metamorphoses, Red, Looped, Amadeus, The Best Brothers, and Intimate Apparel. A resident of Santa Barbara for nine years, she has also stage managed over 20 shows for PCPA Theaterfest in Santa Maria and Solvang, including All My Sons, Hairspray, Caroline or Change, Pride and Prejudice, Peter Pan, Songs for a New World, Curtains, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Heart’s Desire, Art, and The Importance of Being Earnest. Originally from Fallon, Nevada, she graduated in 2003 from Southern Oregon University with a BFA in Theatre Arts, emphasis in Stage Management.
Woyzeck Explores the Price of Humanity Stripped - Maggie Yates, BroadwayWorld
Songs by Tom Waits Reinvent a Great German Play - Charles Donelan, SB Independent
"[a] scintillating spark of rebellious energy" - Maggie Yates, BroadwayWorld
"excellent performances...brilliant" - Charles Donelan, Santa Barbara Independent