By The Way, Meet Vera Stark
THESE LIVESTREAMS WERE MAY 22-23, 2021
Nominated for a 2012 Drama Desk Award for Best Play. It’s the Golden Age of Hollywood, and aspiring starlet Vera Stark works as a maid to Gloria Mitchell, an aging star grasping at her fading career. Worlds collide when Vera lands a trailblazing role in an antebellum epic starring…her boss. While Vera’s portrayal of a slave turns out to be groundbreaking, decades later scholars and film buffs still grapple with the actress’ legacy in Hollywood and the impact that race had on her controversial career. Two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Lynn Nottage’s fast-paced, sly satire, will take you on a seventy-year journey through Vera’s life and the cultural climate that originally shaped her and continues today.
LYNN NOTTAGE is a playwright and a screenwriter. She is the first, and remains the only, woman to have won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama twice. Her plays have been produced widely in the United States and throughout the world. Nottage recently premiered Floyd’s at the Guthrie Theater […] Other plays include Mlima’s Tale (Public Theater), By The Way, Meet Vera Stark (Lilly Award, Drama Desk Nomination), Ruined (Pulitzer Prize, OBIE, Lucille Lortel, New York Drama Critics’ Circle, Audelco, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle Award); Intimate Apparel (American Theatre Critics and New York Drama Critics’ Circle Awards for Best Play); Fabulation, or The Re-Education of Undine (OBIE Award); Crumbs from the Table of Joy; Las Meninas; Mud, River, Stone; Por’knockers; and POOF! Her play Sweat (Pulitzer Prize, Evening Standard Award, Obie Award, Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, Tony Nomination, Drama Desk Nomination) moved to Broadway…Keep reading
CHIP MILLER^ is a director and producer, currently in the role of Associate Artistic Director at Portland Center Stage at the Armory. Some of their recent directing credits include Journeys to Justice (Portland Opera), Hedwig & The Angry Inch, the world premiere of Redwood (Portland Center Stage at the Armory), School Girls; or, The African Mean Girls Play, Welcome to Fear City, A Raisin in the Sun, (KCRep); the world premiere of Becoming Martin (The Coterie); dwb: driving while black (Lawrence Arts Center, Baruch Performing Arts Center). Education: BFA: New York University, Tisch School of the Arts.
BRITTANY K. ALLEN*
Brittany K. Allen is a Brooklyn-based writer and actor. Her play Redwood (Kilroys List 2020) received its world premiere at Portland Center Stage in 2019, and will appear in upcoming seasons at the Jungle Theater and Ensemble Studio Theatre. She’s developed work at the Public Theater, the Lark Play Development Center, KCRep, and elsewhere. Recent acting credits include Redwood (directed by Chip Miller), Gloria: A Life (DR2), True Right (Ars Nova), Minor Character (New Saloon; NY Innovative Theatre Award, Best Ensemble), and workshops with Clubbed Thumb, Atlantic Theater, New Georges, and New York Stage and Film. BFA, NYU-Tisch.
Claire is thrilled to be working with this incredible cast and creative team, and thankful to be able to create in these COVID times. Portland credits include Artists Rep, Portland Playhouse, Chapel Theatre, Proscenium Live, Oregon Children’s Theatre, Broadway Rose, and Live Onstage.
Leroy Barksdale/Herb Forrester
Seth studied at American Conservatory Theatre and Shakespeare & Company. Regional credits include Dontrell Who Kissed the Sea, The Fantastiks!, District Merchants, The Piano Lesson, Fences, The Seahorse, Blue Door, Fires in the Mirror, Civil War Christmas, Taming of the Shrew. Off-Broadway: Twelfth Night. TV: “Grimm,” “Mirror Mirror,” “The LIbrarians.”
Lottie McBride/Carmen Levy-Green
Shareen is excited to be making her Profile debut with this piece. She was most recently seen in Media Rite’s Ism Project, reprising her role in “Being Me in thee Current America” by local playwright Josie Seid. She was also featured in Troy, USA, part of the 2021 Fertile Ground Festival.
Anna Mae Simpkins/Afua Assata Ejobo
Ayanna (She, Her, Hers) is a professional actress based in the Pacific Northwest. She is a Resident Artist of Artists Repertory Theatre, member of Actors Equity Association and SAG-AFTRA and recipient of the Round 14 TCG and Fox Fellowship Foundation grant for Distinguished Achievement. Ayanna’s works include: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (PCA); The Revolutionists, Wolf Play, Teenage Dick, Small Mouth Sounds, Between Riverside and Crazy, An Octoroon, The Importance of Being Earnest, A Civil War Christmas, Grand Concourse, The Understudy, Intimate Apparel and Race (Artists Repertory Theatre) and The Scottsboro Boys (Dir. Susan Stroman, Ahmenson Theatre).
Frederick Slasvick/Brad Donovan
Darius (he/him/his) an theatre artist based in Portland. Favorite productions as an actor include Stupid F***ing Bird, Bedlam’s Sense and Sensibility, The Santaland Diaries, Beard of Avon, Twelfth Night, The 39 Steps (Portland Center Stage); Feathers and Teeth, Small Mouth Sounds, The Strange Undoing of Prudentia Hart (Artists Repertory Theatre); the World Premiere of Stupid F***ing Bird (Wooly Mammoth Theatre); The Gaming Table and Comedy of Errors (Folger Theatre); Lungs, Kiss (Third Rail Repertory Theatre). He is a proud Company Member at Third Rail Repertory Theatre, co-founder of the Anonymous Theatre Company, and collector of turtles.
AARON COOPER SWOR
Maxmillian Von Oster/Peter Rhys-Davies
Originally from the Portland area, Aaron holds a BA in Acting from George Fox University. After a short break from theatre, Aaron dove back in by joining Third Rail Repertory Theatre’s Mentorship Program in 2018 and taking a number of improv courses at Curious Comedy Theater. He was most recently seen in Theatre Vertigo’s Everything You Touch as Victor and Bag&Baggage Productions’ A Clockwork Orange as Alex. When Aaron isn’t acting, he works in public relations for a global tech company. This is Aaron’s first production with Profile Theatre.
Treasure(they/themme) is a Black, queer, gender variant performer whose work aims to focus on those intersections and how they affect their movements through the world. Recent performance credits include Weighted Bodies (Risk/Reward), The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Portland Center Stage), School Girls: Or, the African Mean Girls Play (Portland Center Stage) and The Most Massive Woman Wins (Deep End Theatre)
JAMIE LYNNE SIMONS*
Jamie rejoins Profile Theatre after previously stage managing The Mineola Twins, Las Meninas, Indecent (ASM), and Community Profile’s Our City’s Veterans. They are the season stage manager for Oregon Ballet Theatre, which is soon performing live, in-person! Tour: production stage manager for Hundred Days. Other local credits: Portland Center Stage at the Armory, Portland Opera, Third Rail Repertory, Portland Playhouse, Chamber Music Northwest – and aiding in medical education at Oregon Health & Sciences University as a practice patient. Jamie spent a handful of years on cruise ships with Carnival Cruise Lines and is the Chair of Portland’s Liaison Committee for Actors’ Equity Association.
JAMIE M. REA
Jamie has had the pleasure of exploring theatre as a tool for connection and change for over 20 years. After directing in LA, New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Ohio, New York, and Portland, she now serves as founding co-artistic director of The Beirut Wedding World Theatre Project. Recent local credits include Jesus Hopped the A-Train, CoHo/Beirut Wedding, Topdog Underdog (Street Scenes) and B*tch in Kitchen as part of Salt with Shaking the Tree. Jamie’s activism work has a heavy focus on survivors of sexual violence. Two local projects include the development of and tour of Telling – a piece where survivors tell their own stories with facilitated audience conversations (3 year partnership with OAASIS – a Portland based resource and advocacy organization for adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse). And Made to Dance in Burning Buildings, an interdisciplinary dance/theatre piece of a survivor’s reclamation of self as she navigates PTSD.
*Appearing through an Agreement between this theatre, Profile Theatre, and Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.
^The Director is a Member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, a national theatrical labor union.
“A satisfying screwball comedy.” —Vogue