THE LITTLE SHAKESPEARE FESTIVAL
Updated: Aug 24
An AEA Approved Showcase
as part of the Little Shakespeare Festival
Shakespeare's Ladies at Tea or I thought You’d Never Asp
by Kathleen Kirk
by the Free Shakespeare Theatre Company
Directed by Frank Farrell
Production Stage Manager - Thomas J. Donohoe II
Light/Sound Design - Thomas J. Donohoe II
Stage Fight Director – Paul White
Assistant to the Director – Victoria Devany
Musical Composer - Ben Masterton
Featuring actors Michael Brunetti, Lee DeCecco, Claudia Egli*, Frank Farrell*, Brian Hagerty, Haley Karlich, Jennifer Kim, Adam Muñoz*, Danielle Ruth and Hannah Simpson.
*Equity Member appearing with permission of Actors’ Equity Association without
benefit of an Equity contract in this Off-Off Broadway production.
Shakespeare’s Ladies at Tea
I Thought You’d Never Asp
by Kathleen Kirk, after William Shakespeare
QUICKLY, Hostess at the Boar’s Head (Tea Room) - Lee DeCecco
CLEOPATRA, Queen of Egypt – Frank Farrell* (as of 8/8/23)
CRESSIDA, lover of Troilus - Brian Hagerty
DESDEMONA, a wife to Othello - Haley Karlich
LADY MACBETH, wife to Macbeth - Adam Muñoz*
OLIVIA, a rich countess - Hannah Simpson
ROSALIND, disguised as Ganymede – Jennie/r Kim
PORTIA, Cato’s daughter - Michael Brunetti
IRAS servant of Cleopatra – Danielle Ruth (as of 8/8/23)
Scene: The Boar’s Head Tea Room
Ten Minute Intermission
by the Free Shakespeare Theatre Company Chicago
ACTOR 1 - Michael Brunetti
ACTOR 2 – Brian Hagerty
ACTOR 3 – Danielle Ruth (as of 8/8/23)
ACTOR 4 – Jennifer Kim
ACTOR 5 – Frank Farrell*
ACTOR 6 - Hannah Simpson
ACTOR 7 - Haley Karlich
ACTOR 8 - Adam Muñoz*
ACTOR 9 - Lee DeCecco
PLAY TITLE READER – Claudia Egli*
SPECIAL THANKS: Hadley Todoran, Debby Bell, Conor Mullen, Sam Hood Adrain, Emily Owens, Cathy Ann McGlinchey and Mary Farrell.
FRIGID New York’s mission is to provide both emerging and established artists the opportunity to create and produce original work without limit to content, form, or style, and to amplify their diverse voices. FRIGID does this by presenting an array of monthly programming, mainstage productions, an artist residency, and 7 annual theater festivals that create an environment of collaboration, resourcefulness, and innovation. Founded in 1998, the aim was and is to form a structure, allowing multiple artists to focus on creating and staging new work and providing affordable rental space to scores of independent artists. Now in their third decade they have produced a massive quantity of stimulating downtown theater.
WHO’S WHO IN
Shakespeare's Ladies at Tea & Shakespeare's Deaths
MICHAEL BRUNETTI (Portia/Actor 1) is a New York Actor from Poughkeepsie. His performing experience began at Drew University where he participated in student progress plays, directing workshops and performed in several dance productions. He specializes in modern, contemporary, and experimental styles. Michael successfully collaborated with various professional companies in his undergrad years: Vanessa Long’s Dance Company at Medicine Show Theatre, Nimbus Dance Works at Brooklyn Academy of Music, and NYC Dance Arts at Barclays Center. Upon receiving his BA in Theatre Arts, he enrolled at Maggie Flanigan Studio to train and strengthen his Acting skills. Since completing this conservatory program, Michael has been cast in numerous Shakespeare Showcases produced and directed by Roger Hendricks Simon. He currently serves as a company member of The Simon Studio. Select Theatre credits: Bernhardt/Hamlet (Alphonse Mucha) at The CENTER in Rhinebeck, A Taste of Honey (Geoffrey) and Tartuffe at the American Theatre for Actors.
LEE DECECCO (Mistress Quickly/Actor 9) is a New Jersey based actor from the Boston area. They are very excited to be participating in this production of Shakespeare’s Ladies at Tea and Shakespeare’s Deaths. Lee graduated with a BFA in Acting from Montclair State University and has been involved in productions in the New Jersey area. Lee has appeared in the online improv show Zlurp Zlorp as multiple characters. Most recently, they appeared as Lunch in Tin Cat Shoes at Nutley Little Theatre.
VICTORIA DEVANY (Assistant to the Director) has been a professional performer since she was a teenager. She also works as an acting/vocal coach, dramaturg/playwright and assistant director. Vicky has performed in venues such as City Center, Symphony Space, Carnegie Hall, Wolf Trap, and others, including tours in New England, the Midwest, CA -- and performances in England and Japan. Her solo cabaret show has been performed in Chiba Prefecture, and in NYC. She is delighted to participate with First Flight Theatre Company and thanks everyone involved in the production. Member: AEA/DGA. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
THOMAS J. DONOHOE II (Production Stage Manager & Light/Sound Design) is a NJ/NYC-based stage manager and graduate of Ramapo College of New Jersey with a degree in Directing/Stage Management. Select credits include First Flight Theatre Company: Little Women (PSM), New Studio on Broadway: An Experiment. (PSM), Once More (PSM), Montclair Studio Players: Miracle on 34th Street (PSM/TD), Triad Theatre: Magic Box (PSM/Lighting), Charles Seller Foundation: The Addams Family (PSM/Sound Design), Wolfsmouth Players: Effigy (ASM/Tech), A Very Great Mischief (Tech), Acting Under the Influence: Julius Caesar (Director), Twelfth Night (PSM), The Tank NYC: 20th Anniversary Gala (SM), Autumn Affair (Tech), Modern Swimwear (Tech), Ramapo College: Stop/Kiss (PSM), Baltimore (PSM), The Big Unknown 1.5° (PSM), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (ASM), Antigone (ASM), The Sonic Life of a Giant Tortoise (ASM). Nutley Little Theatre: Hand to God (TD), Tin Cat Shoes (PSM). He currently serves as the first chair of the Nutley Little Theatre Youth Committee, and was a recipient of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival Region 2 Award for Stage Management Excellence. Contact at email@example.com.
FRANK FARRELL* (Director/Producer/Cleopatra (as of 8/8/23)/Actor 5) most recently directed First Flight Theatre Company’s Little Women at The Hermitage in Bergen County, NJ. He was an actor in Chicago for 40 years receiving three Joseph Jefferson acting nominations and recently returned to NYC where he was born. While in Chicago he directed and produced plays for Free Shakespeare Theatre Company, Temporary Theatre, Shakespeare’s Herd, Steppenwolf Theater, Raven Theatre, Equity Library Theater Chicago, the North Lakeside Players and Theatre-Hikes. For Citadel Theatre in Lake Forest, IL he directed outdoor productions of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, As You Like It, Spoon River Anthology, Romeo and Juliet and Scapin. Frank has formed six theater companies along the way including Theatre-Hikes in Chicago and, in Grand Haven, Michigan, the Pigeon Creek Shakespeare Company. In NYC he wrote, directed and produced Forgotten Soldiers from Our Forgotten War for the First Flight Theatre Company, the seventh theatre group he has formed. For First Flight he also coordinated several stage readings of Maxwell Anderson’s plays in New York City and Chicago. Frank directed and produced last summer’s production of Maxwell Anderson’s play Valley Forge at The Hermitage Mansion in Bergen County, New Jersey. His Zoom film In the Garden of Live Flowers recently won Best Biopic at the Green Academy Awards Film Festival. He has published seven books including Forgotten Soldiers from Our Forgotten War, all available at Amazon.com.
BRIAN HAGERTY (Cressida/Actor 2) is a graduate of Montclair State University, and he has studied acting at The Simon Studio, Stella Adler Studio of Acting, and the New Actors Workshop. He appeared as Dudley in The House of Agatha Mystrie with Park Players and Eglamour in The Two Gentlemen of Verona with American Theater of Actors.
HALEY KARLICH (Desdemona/Actor 7, Fight Captain) is an actor and production assistant of live theatre and film; recent credits include Insidious 5, Nutley Little Theatre’s Tin Cat Shoes, Tiny Viking Production’s Ghost Light, Fleischmann & Campanella’s The Visitation Opera, and other projects. With a BA in Theatre Studies & Musical Theatre, she’s also an experienced director, vocalist, combat and voiceover artist; appearing throughout the Radio Repertory Company of America’s Anne Manx audio series, as well as dramas produced by Cape Swoosh Productions. Haley’s currently working on another major independent film, by the writer of Green Book; but is over the moon to be playing in NY with this amazing team, marking her Shakespearean debut!
JENNIFER KIM (Rosalind/Actor 4) is a NYC-based actress. Her recent roles include two roles in Thornton Wilder's short plays, Love and How to Cure It (Linda) and Cement Hands (Diana), Maxwell Anderson's Valley Forge (Neil), How to Survive a Shakespeare Play (Juliet), Alfred Sutro's The Open Door (Lady Torminster), Orson Welles' War of the Worlds (Announcer #2), a three-actor performance of A Christmas Carol (Bob Cratchit/Marley/others), Little Women (Beth/Aunt March/Hannah).
KATHLEEN KIRK (Shakespeare’s Ladies at Tea/Playwright) is a widely-published poet, freelance writer, editor, actor, and director who moved back to her hometown in central Illinois after a career in Chicago. She serves on the Board of Heartland Theatre Company, where she has acted, directed, and written short plays for the Young at Heartland acting troupe. She writes history-based scripts for Illinois Voices Theatre, performed in the annual History Makers Gala and Evergreen Cemetery Walk for the McLean County Museum of History. In Chicago, Kathleen acted with the Free Shakespeare Company, for which Shakespeare’s Ladies at Tea was written, as well as the Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Court Theatre, and others, and directed in the Organic Theater’s New Plays Festival. She is the poetry editor for Escape Into Life, an online journal, and works part time at a public library.
BENJAMIN MASTERTON (Composer) has composed and arranged music for dozens of Shakespeare productions in Chicago with the Shakespeare Festival of Chicago, Free Shakespeare, and Body Politic, including Midsummer Night's Dream, Macbeth, Hamlet, The Winter's Tale, Two Gentlemen of Verona, Twelfth Night, Merchant of Venice and All's Well That Ends Well. Other favorite productions include The Lennon Play, Dagon, The Lorenzaccio Story, Dorothy Parker Review, Dear Brutus, The Songs of the Pogo Podcast (with Frank Farrell), The Imaginary Invalid, The Successful Life of 3, The Snow Queen (with Rod Ceballos), The Crucible and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf (Raven Theater), Three Sisters (Commons Theater), and The Enchanted (Chicago Waldorf School). Ben has written over a hundred songs and currently resides in Gainesville, Florida.
ADAM MUÑOZ* (Lady Macbeth/Actor 8) lives, performs and teaches in NYC, recently becoming an Adjunct Professor at his alma mater, NYU Tisch School of the Arts. Off Broadway: Pip's Island, It Came From Beyond, and The Great Cat Massacre. Associate Choreography credits: The Three Musketeers (Oregon Shakespeare Festival), Richard III (The Public). Adam has always been captivated by storytelling, and he is lucky to spend every day exploring its connection to the human heart. He would like to thank his partner Danielle for never allowing his fire to fade.
DANIELLE RUTH (Iras/Actor 3 (as of 8/8/23)) is thrilled to be joining the cast as a last-minute replacement in these rousing plays! Danielle holds a BA in Theatre & Dance from the University of Texas where she took a deep dive into Shakespearean acting. New York Credits Include: Poppy in Lights Out!, Vera/Private Dancer in It Came From Beyond!, and Revolutionary in Counting Sheep - An Immersive Guerrilla Folk Opera. The rest of her credits can be found at danielleruth.com. She wants to thank her partner Adam Muñoz for his support and encouragement through this fast past process!
HANNAH SIMPSON (Olivia/Actor 6) received her BA in Theatre from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and studied Shakespeare at the Stella Adler Studio of Acting in NYC and made Brooklyn her home with her cat Tybalt. She was last seen at the New York Theatre Festival playing Meredith in My Body, My Health, My Choice! The last time she died a Shakespearean death was as Lady Anne in Richard III. Other past NYC credits include Curse of the Starving Class (Emma), The Merchant of Venice (Launcelet), and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (Tumnus). @han_simpson2.
A Note from the Free Shakespeare Theatre Company’s founder and first artistic director Frank Farrell, who is also the founder and current Artistic Director of the First Flight Theatre Company
When a bunch of us were very young and living in Chicago working together with the Free Shakespeare Theatre Company the ensemble put together something called Shakespeare on the Spot, which featured a triple bill of half hour versions of Hamlet, Macbeth (in the dark w/flashlights), and Shakespeare’s Ladies at Tea by Kathleen Kirk. Shakespeare on the Spot was first presented at the Story Theater, 1608 N. Wells St, Chicago from January 22 through February 14, 1982 for 12 performances. Each of the three plays were again presented as part of a 24-hour marathon of Shakespeare’s plays, sonnets and Shakespeare related sketches presented by the Free Shakespeare Theatre Company April 23 – 24, 1982 at the Story Theater, 1608 N. Wells St, Chicago. Shakespeare’s Deaths was presented for the first time as the finale of this Shakespeare Birthday marathon. Till now…
Actors' Equity Association (AEA), founded in 1913, represents more than 50,000 actors and stage managers in the United States. Equity seeks to advance, promote and foster the art of live theater as an essential component of our society. Equity negotiates wages and working conditions, providing a wide range of benefits including health and pension plans. AEA is a member of the AFL-CIO, and is affiliated with FIA, an International organization of performing arts unions. The Equity emblem is our mark of excellence. www.actorsequity.org.