Artistic Staff Bios
ELLEN SIMON (Playwright) wrote the screenplays for One Fine Day and Moonlight and Valentino, based upon her stage play. She also worked on How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days, as well as doing rewrites for numerous other films. Her plays have been performed at Duke Broadway Preview Series, Stages Repertory in Houston and The Pasadena Playhouse. Ellen wrote for the television series, “thirtysomething,” and created a sitcom pilot for NBC. She is most grateful to Karen Azenberg and Pioneer Theatre Company for the 2018 staged reading of Ass in their Play-by-Play series, and now for their main stage production.
KAREN AZENBERG (Director) This marks Karen Azenberg’s eighth season as Artistic Director at PTC. Favorite projects include the world premieres of Alabama Story and “i”; the regional premieres of Sting’s The Last Ship, and Les Misérables; and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Newsies, Sweet Charity, and The Rocky Horror Show. Originally from New York, her work there includes Lyrics and Lyricists (92nd St. Y), Blocks (a collaboration with Jonathan Larson), Prom Queens Unchained, and choreography for Richard Greenberg’s The Dazzle (Roundabout Theatre Company). Among her other credits are National Tours of Carousel and Brigadoon, West Side Story (over 15 productions), and productions at Indiana Repertory, Geva Theatre Center, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Goodspeed, and Utah Shakespeare Festival. Karen is a past president of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC). Her favorite productions are her son Alexander and her daughter Emelia.
WILL VAN DYKE (Music Composer) currently serves as the Music Supervisor/Orchestrator/Arranger of the hit revival of Little Shop Of Horrors Off-Broadway. Will also Orchestrated and Arranged Pretty Woman on Broadway and continues to Supervise worldwide. Other credits: Kinky Boots, Rent, The Addams Family, Grease, and Wicked. As a composer: i (Pioneer), The Gravedigger’s Lullaby (TACT), Straight (Acorn), Writing Kevin Taylor (Village), The Lion King Experience titles (Disney). Will also writes musicals with Jeff Talbott and is one-half of the band Stereo Dawn (@stereodawn). For more info and music: www.willvandyke.com or @wvdmusic.
JO WINIARSKI (Scenic Designer) is a set designer and art director, who also designed PTC’s production of The Lifespan of a Fact. Her Off-Broadway credits include Accidentally Brave, The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey; Love, Loss, and What I Wore; multiple shows with The Pearl Theatre Company; The Jewish American Princess of Comedy; and I Love You Because. Her regional design credits include 12 seasons and over 30 shows at Utah Shakespeare Festival, South Coast Repertory, The Old Globe, The Guthrie Theater, Arizona Theatre Company, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Dallas Theater Center, Geva Theatre Center, and Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park. Ms. Winiarski was the original art director on “Late Night with Seth Meyers,” for the first 5 seasons. She received an Emmy Award nomination for art direction for “A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All.”
PAUL MILLER (Lighting Designer) Previously at PTC: Cagney, Mamma Mia!, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Curious Incident…, I Hate Hamlet, A Few Good Men, Much Ado About Nothing, In The Heights. Broadway: Amazing Grace, The Illusionists, Legally Blonde, Freshly Squeezed, Laughing Room Only; Off-Broadway: Desperate Measures, Clinton!, Pageant, Vanities – the Musical, Waiting for Godot, Addicted, Nunsense, Balancing Act, and 11 productions for New York City Center Encores!. Regional: The Old Globe, Dallas Theatre Center, Chicago Shakespeare, Idaho Shakespeare, Asolo Repertory, American Conservatory Theatre, Cleveland Playhouse, Pasadena Playhouse, Goodspeed Opera House, Westport Playhouse. U.S. Tours include: The Illusionists, Elf, Shrek, Legally Blonde, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Hairspray, The Producers, The Sound of Music. Television: Live from Lincoln Center, Netflix, New Year’s Eve from Time’s Square for the last 20 years. International: Stratford Festival, London’s West End, Vienna, Milan (Teatro alla Scala), Brazil, The Phillippines, South Africa, and China.
ALLAN BRANSON (Sound Designer) is thrilled to be a part of Pioneer Theatre Company. He maybe if previously worked at The Arkansas Repertory Theatre as their resident sound designer for six seasons, where he designed such shows as Because of Winn-Dixie (world premiere), The Bridges of Madison County (regional premiere) and Memphis (regional premiere). Branson is a proud member of The Theatrical Sound Designers and Composers Association.
MARY P. COSTELLO (Production Stage Manager) has worked on over 60 productions during nine seasons with PTC. Favorites include Sting’s The Last Ship, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Les Misèrables, In the Heights, Next to Normal, and Rent. Other stage management teams: Indiana Repertory Theatre, Connecticut Repertory Theatre, Boston Theatre Works, Grand Valley Shakespeare Festival, and the Utah Shakespeare Festival. Proud Equity member.
BECKY LYNN DAWSON (Stage Manager) joins PTC for her third season. She holds an MFA from Mason Gross School of the Arts and a BFA from Utah State University. Selected stage management credits include From Here to Eternity, Saturday Night Fever (Merry- Go-Round Playhouse), The Spitfire Grill, Chicago, M. Butterfly (Northern Stage), The Christians (Gulfshore Playhouse), and Divinamente New York 2009 & 2010 (EH Arts International). She would like to send many thanks to her family for their continual support.
EMILY NACRISSA GRIFFITH (1st Assistant Stage Manager) graduated from UVU with a Bachelor of Science in Theatre Arts with emphases in performance and design/technology. Griffith earned the Kennedy Center’s Meritorious Achievement Award for her work as the production stage manager of UVU’s Next to Normal, which received the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival national award for Outstanding Production.
MAXWELL PARIS (2nd Assistant Stage Manager) is thrilled to be working for PTC as an Assistant Stage Manager. He is a junior in the stage management program at the University of Utah and has worked as a dresser for PTC for three seasons. Some of his favorite dressing credits include: La Cage Aux Folles, Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley, and Mamma Mia!. He has also enjoyed working as a stage manager at the U for It Doesn’t Rain Enough and The Odyssey. He thanks his friends and family for their endless support and Amber for her continuous guidance.
This production is sponsored by:
The Bireley Endowment