Presented as part of the National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere, The Mermaid Hour focuses on the 21st century All-American Family and the challenges they face raising Violet, a 12-year-old trans girl. Meet the cast and crew that bring this poignant and hilarious play to life.
Jed Arkley, Bird
Jed Arkley has been featured in “Poltergeist: Live” (Steve Freeling), “Road House: The Play!” (Wade Garrett), and “Rudolph: On Stage!” (Rudolph), all at The Siren Theater. Jed has also written for and acted in numerous sketch comedy shows and has been performing improv comedy for close to 20 years with groups such as Whiskey Tango, Arkley and McLendon, and J Names. He is a co-founder and producer of The Stumptown Improv Festival, which is now entering its fifth year. His 13-year-old daughter is pretty much the best.
Michael Cavazos, Crux
Michael Cavazos is the author of the play Gritos y Chismesitos and co-author of Chic and Sassy and Chic and Sassy: The Higher the Hair, the Closer to God. A founding member of the sketch comedy troupe Gender Offenders, he has performed mainly on the East coast. In Portland, he has stage managed several shows including La Belle, Savage/Love, and Medea at Imago Theatre. A member of Latinx Pride, he has produced the festival line-up for the last two years. You can hear Michael deejaying every Wednesday on opbmusic.
Kai Hynes, Jacob
Kai Hynes recently participated in “The Caucasian Chalk Circle” (Shaking the Tree Theatre), “Midsummer Night’s Dream” (Livermore Shakespeare Festival), and “Cyrano de Bergerac” (Livermore Shakespeare Festival), in addition to a number of shows at his school, the University of Portland. He is very excited to be involved in telling this important story, and he hopes you enjoy it as a much as he does.
Jaryn Lasentia, Violet
Jaryn Lasentia recently performed in: Cabaret (Boy Soprano) Village Theatre, I Am Harvey Milk (Young Harvey Milk) Seattle Mens Chorus, Mary Poppins (Michael Banks) Village Theatre, Oliver! (Charlie Bates) 5th Avenue Theatre, Jesus Christ Superstar (Featured Ensemble) Seattle Musical Theatre, The Who’s Tommy (Young Tommy) Seattle Musical Theatre, Amahl/Night Visitors Opera (Amahl) First Congr. Church. Thanks to Jeannette D’Armand, Troy Wageman, and Dennis Coleman.
Nelda Reyes, Pilar
Nelda Reyes co-founded Nuestro Canto. She has been a professional actress and educator specialized in physical theatre and Latin American and Mexican cultural expressions. She holds a MA degree in Theatre Arts from Portland State University. In addition to her stage experience she has assisted and directed theatrical and opera productions in Mexico and Portland. Recent credits; The Tale of the Sleeping Beauty, The Sun Serpent (NWCTS), Sam Shepard´s Festival of One Acts (Profile Theatre).
Barbie Wu, Mika
Barbie Wu recently performed in Magellanica (Artists Repertory Theatre). Wu is an actor from Taiwan. She received her Masters of Fine Arts in acting from Southern Methodist University in 2014. Her previous credits include Katherina Serafima Gleb in Slavs! (Southern Methodist University), Kattrin in Mother Courage (Oregon Contemporary Theatre), and Puck in Shakespeare in Hollywood (Very Little Theatre).
Sacha Reich, Director
Reich conceived, adapted and directed original programming for her company, Jewish Theatre Collaborative (JTC), including Charlotte Salomon: Life? Or Theatre? A Play with Songs, A Pigeon and a Boy. The Ministry of Special Cases and Davita’s Harp. Before JTC, Sacha She was the Co-founder and Artistic Director of Women in Time, a Bay Area theatre company creating critically acclaimed, innovative ensemble productions of classical theatre, such as The Misanthrope and Winter’s Tale. Reich also served as an Artistic Associate with Milagro Theatre, participating in company visioning, play selection and directing main stage productions; among them, Yemaya’s Belly. She is thrilled for the invitation to rise up with Milagro and this play.
Megan Wilkerson, Scenic Design Consultant
Megan Wilkerson is a resident artist at Artists Repertory Theatre, a member of The Rivendell Theatre Ensemble in Chicago. Previously for Milagro Megan designed scenery for Oye Oya, Opcion Multiple, American Night, and consulted on the renovation to El Zocalo. At Artists Rep this year she designed Scenery for Caught, The Humans, and The Thanksgiving Play as well as Projections for Magellanica. She also designed Lungs and The Events for Third Rail and is currently working on The Secretaries for Profile Theatre. Next season her you can see her work here in Portland on stage at Artists Rep and at Portland Center Stage. Megan is a member of USA 829 the Union of Theatrical Designers. Her portfolio can be found at www.meganwilkerson.com.
Gina Piva, Costume Design
After graduating with a BA in Theater Arts in 2012, Gina began a design apprenticeship with Portland Playhouse for their 2013-2014 Season. Since ending the apprenticeship Gina has been busy working as a freelance costume designer with professional theater companies and high school theater programs. Her work includes Lifeboat (Corrib Theatre), Davita’s Harp (Jewish Theater Collaborative), One Man, Two Guvnors (Clackamas Repertory Theater), Gruesome Playground Injuries (Action/Adventure), and Twelfth Night (Post 5).
Kim Williams, Lighting Design
Kim is a local designer who has been working in/around Portland for around 3 years. She has worked in various capacities for local companies including: ART, Beirut Wedding, Jewish Theatre Collaborative, Milagro, and Enlightened Theatrics in Salem. Kim received training in lighting design and related skills from the Broadway Master Classes in New York and has had the privilege of learning from some of Broadway’s greatest designers through the KCACTF theatre program in Washington D.C. In 2014, she received 1st place in scenic design at the KCACTF national festival.
Christopher Beatty, Sound Design
Christopher Beatty is a composer, sound designer, and actor with a penchant for the absurd. Recent projects include Northwest Classical Theatre Collaborative’s Three Sisters, Fuse Theatre Ensemble’s Tether: A one woman anti-circus, Jewish Theatre Collaborative’s Davita’s Harp and The Ministry of Special Cases, and the Spectravagasm series. You can hear his work every holiday season underscoring the hugely popular Christmas Carol: A One Man Ghost Story with the inestimable Phillip Berns in various locations across Portland. He is currently a company member with The Reformers, and performs music with the band Brothers Hallowed Junction.
Sarah Andrews, Properties Master
Sarah Andrews earned her BFA in Acting in 2014 and has lived in Portland since. In 2013, she wrote, produced and directed an original adaptation of “Life is a Dream”, and in 2012, the children’s show “Pearl and the Five-Headed Dragon.” In Portland she has worked with theatre companies including Artists Repertory Theatre, Staged!, Imago, defunkt, Lakewood, Valley Rep, Coho, Oregon Children’s Theatre, and is the resident properties designer at Milagro. She has directed Thom Pain (based on nothing) for Crave Theatre, a company she co-founded.
David Levine, Stage Manager
David Levine is a lifelong Portlander and former teacher who comes from a long line of educators-turned-actors, dating back to 1950’s summer camp in the Catskills. Recent stage managing credits include Peter and the Starcatcher, How I Learned What I Learned, and A Christmas Carol at Portland Playhouse.
Joel Patrick Durham, Board Operator
Joel Patrick Durham is a Portland based director and actor. Most recently Joel wrote and directed Nesting: Vacancy a serialized horror/thriller, which performed at the Shoebox Theatre last October. Previously he appeared as Luciana/Dromio in The Bomb-itty of Errors (Post-5 Theatre) and has toured three shows with Oregon Children’s Theatre, performing for youths all over Oregon. Joel is a proud member of the 13/14 Third Rail Mentorship Program.