Actors’ Equity Association (AEA) was founded in 1913 as the first of the American actor unions. Equity’s mission is to advance, promote, and foster the art of live theatre as an essential component of our society. Today, Equity represents more than 40,000 actors, singers, dancers, and stage managers working in hundreds of theatres across the United States. Equity members are dedicated to working in the theatre as a profession, upholding the highest artistic standards. Equity negotiates wages and working conditions and provides a wide range of benefits, including health and pension plans for its members. Through its agreement with Equity, Tennessee Shakespeare Company has committed to the fair treatment of the actors and stage managers employed in this production. AEA is a member of the AFL-CIO and is affiliated with FIA, an international organization of performing arts unions. For more information, visit www.actorsequity.org.
Bruce Bui (Costume Designer for Richard III) TSC: The Taming of the Shrew, Unto the Breach, Shakes Rattle & Roll, Hamlet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Julius Caesar, Othello, Romeo and Juliet, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), It’s a Wonderful Life: a LiveRadio Play, Rebel Shakespeare and His Women, and Shakespeare’s Greatest Hits. Originally from Southern California, Bruce now lives in Memphis and is in his twelfth season as the Wardrobe Director and Resident Costume Designer for Ballet Memphis. His works can be seen regularly on the Orpheum stage and numerous other venues around the Mid-South. He has also worked with The Western Stage (Always, Patsy Cline), Cabrillo Musical Theatre (Funny Girl), Santa Susanna Repertory Theatre (Shiloh, War of the World), and Kingsmen Shakespeare Company (As You Like It), among others.
Neil Freeman (Text Consultant) is a teacher, director, text coach, and actor. He is the man behind the acclaimed First Folio editions published by Applause and utilized across the globe. Currently Associate Professor Emeritus (of Theatre) at the University of British Columbia in Canada, he is also a Master Teacher with Shakespeare & Company in Lenox, and Text Consultant to several other U.S. and Canadian theatres. His range of teaching, coaching, and directing ranges from the fifteen-year-olds in youth companies to high school teachers, through university level students (undergraduate and graduate in both liberal arts and the top-ranked professional training schools) to professional theatre companies and individual actors.
Paul Kiernan* (Clarence/Ensemble in Richard III) TSC: The Taming of the Shrew (Petruchio) Regional theatre: Hamlet, 12 Angry Men, Is He Dead, Pride and Prejudice, Our Town, The Tempest at Pioneer Theatre; Freedomland, Skin in Flames, The Beard of Avon, Six years, End Days at Salt Lake Acting Company; Julius Caesar, Henry IV at Salt Lake Shakespeare; Romeo and Juliet at Pennsylvania Shakespeare Company; Cyrano de Bergerac (title role) at Hangar Theatre; Macbeth, As You Like It, The Tempest, The Taming of the Shrew at St. Louis Shakespeare; The Merry Wives of Windsor, You Can't Take it With You, Amadeus at Great Lakes Shakespeare; Twelfth Night, Much Ado About Nothing, Richard III, As You Like It at Orlando Shakespeare Theater. Film/TV: HBO series From the Earth to the Moon, Luck of the Irish, Go Figure, The Cell 2. MFA in Acting from Brandeis University.
Dan McCleary (title role in Richard III; director of Twelfth Night) is a native Memphian and a graduate of Germantown High School and its Poplar Pike Playhouse. Dan directed and acted in TSC’s inaugural production of As You Like It (Jaques) as well as The Glass Menagerie and The Taming of the Shrew. He directed TSC’s Hamlet,The Tempest, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, all-female Julius Caesar, Othello, Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), and Themes from a Midsummer Night. He also has directed productions of As You Like It at Orlando Shakespeare Theater, The Servant of Two Masters outdoors in downtown Atlanta and at Seattle Shakespeare Company, and All’s Well That Ends Well at Georgia Shakespeare Festival. At the Orlando Shakespeare Theatre, he directed the world premiere of The Stone Face and played the title roles in Antony and Cleopatra and Richard III, Brutus in Julius Caesar, Porfiry in Crime and Punishment, Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew, and Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor. As Associate Artistic Director at Shakespeare & Company in the Berkshires, Dan acted in and directed over 30 productions, appearing as Coriolanus, Macbeth, Herman Melville, Stephano, Don Armado, Hotspur, Master Ford, Bertram, and Antipholus/Dromio of Ephesus. He directed S&Co’s first production of The Servant of Two Masters, also his own adaptation of Anaïs Nin’s Henry & June, Vita & Virginia, My Own Stranger, and The Fiery Rain. Other Regional/New York theatre: Merrimack Rep, North Shore Music Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, StageWest, Alabama Shakespeare, Arden Theatre, Studio 4-A, and Huntington Theatre.
Dan is a published poet and teaches Shakespeare master classes around the country. Memphis Magazine has named him among the “Who’s Who in Memphis” each year from 2009-12, and the Germantown Arts Alliance honored him with its 2009 Distinguished Arts and Humanities Medal for Performing Arts. He serves on the City of Germantown’s Telecommunications Committee, and holds a B.A. in Advertising and Journalism from Temple University. Dan and his wife Stephanie are the proud parents of three-year-old twin boys, Sullivan and Collins.
Melissa A. Nathan* (Stage Manager for Richard III and Twelfth Night) TSC: The Taming of the Shrew. Melissa is based out of New York. Recent regional theatre: RED (Triad Stage), Deathtrap (Centenary Stage Company), Knight of the Burning Pestle and Our Town (Theater at Monmouth), Educating Rita (Florida Rep), August: Osage County (WPPAC), The Mound Builders (Kaliyuga Arts), Lost in Yonkers (Atlantic Stage), The Diary of Anne Frank (Chenango River Theatre), Wicked City (Depot Theatre), Victory (PTP/NYC), Bonnie & Clyde (Asolo Repertory Theatre), China: The Whole Enchilada (FringeNYC), Twelfth Night and The Imaginary Invalid (Orlando Shakespeare Theatre).
William Shakespeare (Playwright) was probably a lot like you, regardless of your age. He was also a Revolutionary. He was born into an Age of alarming innovation and discovery in every field of study: voyage, religion, printing, science, commerce, history, disaster, and triumph. Just like you. There was revolution all around him. William was born into an Age of religious ambivalence, often with accompanying violence, and he received the usual education for a boy of the Age until he is 12 years old. He married an older woman, perhaps because they were pregnant first. And there are two periods in his early adult life that we know very little about. When he emerges in documentation, he is a player and a writer. But he doesn’t write like the others around him. He writes, using known stories, through the rhythm of his heart. You can hear it in his verse lines. He began to write his life into his plays: when his son Hamnet and father die, there is Hamlet; after his mother dies and England’s riots create domestic war, there is Coriolanus; after he falls in love with a dark-haired woman in the city, there are the Sonnets to his Dark Lady and all of his Rosalinds in As You Like It and Romeo and Juliet and Love’s Labor’s Lost; and when his daughters come of age, there are his final plays in which the daughters redeem their fathers. It is said he created the human being, which is to say he developed characters on stage with psychological underpinnings and fragile grace resulting in landmark joys or the end of lives. Like a genuine poet, he forces no answers upon us. He lends us timeless questions. William was a Revolutionary because he dared to question his life in a public forum. He discovered that which is most personal is shared by us all. It is collectively held and needs to be articulated and felt. In so doing, he redefined the function of theatre. His Age compelled and inspired him, just as our own Age can do for us.
Stephanie Shine (director of A Midsummer Night's Dream; creator/director of touring Shakespeare Said It First!) spent 18 years with Seattle Shakespeare Company, 13 as Artistic Director, before departing in June of 2011 to join her husband in Memphis and the staff of Tennessee Shakespeare Company. For Seattle Shakespeare, she directed 17 productions, including The Threepenny Opera, Cyrano de Bergerac, and the lauded all-male Taming of the Shrew. Her other directorial credits include Romeo and Juliet for Tennessee Shakespeare Company, Taming of the Shrew and The Comedy of Errors for Colorado Shakespeare Festival; I Am of Ireland (which she also conceived and adapted) for Book-It Repertory Theatre; Love's Labor's Lost for Cornish College of the Arts; A Christmas Carol (also adapted) for Bainbridge Performing Arts; Romeo and Juliet for Seattle University, When the Messenger is Hot for Theater Schmeater, and the international award-winning one-woman Marilyn Monroe Biopic, Marilyn: Forever Blonde. A well-known actress in the Northwest, she has performed for Seattle Repertory Theatre, Seattle Shakespeare Company, ACT, The Empty Space, Seattle Children's Theatre, Book-It Repertory Theatre, and Tacoma Actors Guild. Regionally, she appeared with the Oregon and New Jersey Shakespeare Festivals, Houston's Alley Theatre, Arizona Theatre Company, and NYC's Theatre for a New Audience. Her Shakespeare roles include Juliet, Rosalind, Lady Macbeth, Beatrice, Regan, Feste, Kate, Bianca, Dionyza, The Princess of France, Hero, Perdita, and most recently The Chorus in Henry V. Ms. Shine is the newly appointed Artistic Director of the robust young company Shakespeare Walla Walla in Washington State, and she is the lucky mother of Conor, Cahilan, Sullivan, and Collins.
* Member of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.
+ Member of The Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers, Inc., an independent national labor union.