Roald Dahl's Willy Wonka
Music and Lyrics by
Leslie Bricusse & Anthony Newley
Adapted for the Stage by
Leslie Bricusse & Tim McDonald
Roald Dahl (Author) was born to Norwegian parents in 1916 in Wales and has become one of the world's most successful and well-known of all children's writers. Roald Dahl's inspiration for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory came from his time at school, when he and his classmates were occasionally asked by an important chocolate manufacturer to test out their newest inventions. He never lost his taste for chocolate. His other books include James and the Giant Peach, The BFG, The Witches (winner of the 1983 Whitbread Award), and Matilda. Roald Dahl died in 1990. Read more about Roald Dahl by visiting the official website at www.roalddahl.com
Leslie Bricusse (Music, Lyrics)is a writer-composer-lyricist who has contributed to many musical films and plays during his career. He has been nominated for ten Academy Awards, nine Grammys and four Tonys, and has won two Oscars, a Grammy and eight Ivor Novello Awards, the premiere British Music Award. He was born in London, and educated at University College School and Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge (later receiving a Master's Degree). There, he co-authored, directed and performed in his first two musical shows, Out of the Blue and Lady at the Wheel (which eventually moved to the West End).
He spent the first year of his professional life at the Globe Theatre writing the musical, Boy On The Corner, and the screenplay and score of his first motion picture, Charley Moon, which won his first Ivor Novello Award. His subsequent stage musicals include Stop The World - I Want To Get Off; The Roar Of The Greasepaint - The Smell Of The Crowd; Pickwick; Harvey; The Good Old Bad Old Days; Goodbye, Mr. Chips; Henry's Wives; Scrooge; One Shining Moment; Sherlock Holmes; Jekyll and Hyde and Victor/Victoria. He has written songs and/or screenplays for such films as Doctor Dolittle; Scrooge; Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory; Goodbye, Mr. Chips; Superman; Victor/Victoria; Santa Claus - The Movie; Home Alone I & II; Hook; Tom & Jerry - The Movie and various Pink Panther(s).
In 1989, Leslie received the Kennedy Award for consistent excellence in British songwriting (British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors) and was inducted into the American Songwriters' Hall of Fame. His many songs include: "What Kind of Fool Am I?"; "Once In A Lifetime"; "Gonna Build A Mountain"; "Who Can I Turn To"; "The Joker"; "If I Ruled The World"; "My Kind Of Girl"; "Talk To The Moon"; "You and I"; "Feeling Good"; "When I Look Into Your Eyes"; "Goldfinger"; "Can You Read My Mind?" (the love theme from Superman); "You Only Live Twice"; "Le Jazz Hot"; "On A Wonderful Day Like Today"; "Two For The Road"; "The Candy Man"; "This Is The Moment" and "Crazy World". His songs have been recorded by major artists, including Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Judy Garland, Aretha Franklin, Barbra Streisand, Sammy Davis, Jr. (who recorded 60 Bricusse songs), Tony Bennett, Shirley Bassey, Tom Jones. Petula Clark, Julie Andrews, Liza Minnelli, Andy Williams, Rex Harrison, Kate Smith, Elaine Paige, Anthony Newley, Michael Feinstein, Bette Midler, The Moody Blues, Nancy Sinatra, Lena Horne, Sergio Mendes, Dionne Warwick, Robert Goulet, Matt Munro, Ray Charles, Ethel Merman, Placido Domingo, Jennifer Holliday, Danny Kaye, Robbie Williams, Mariah Carey and Linda Eder.
His next projects include a remarkable musical biography of the world's greatest entertainer, the late Sammy Davis, Jr., entitled Sammy, which goes into production in America in the Fall of 2004, directed and choreographed by Debbie Allen, and the U.S. premiere of Doctor Dolittle (2005). Bricusse has also completed the book, music and lyrics of his musical version of Noah's Ark (opening 2006) and is presently writing a musical adaptation of Cyrano De Bergerac with Frank Wildhorn, which will open in the U. K. in 2005.
Anthony Newley (Music, Lyrics) was an actor, singer, songwriter and director of unusual versatility; his career spanned more than 50 years and included film, theatre, television and recording. Born September 24, 1931, in London, his education was interrupted by the Blitz. Newley was evacuated to Morecombe, Lancashire, where he was fostered by George Pescud, a former music hall performer. Pescud first saw an advertisement for the Italia Conti Stage School where at age 14 Newley was accepted as a pupil and a tea boy. He had only been at the school for a few weeks when the film director Geoffrey de Barkus came to look for a boy to play the title role in The Adventures of Dusty Bates. Newley got the part.
He found ongoing success as a child actor, most notably as the Artful Dodger in David Lean's 1948 film Oliver Twist. Propelled by his role in Oliver Twist, at the age of 17, Newley made his U.S. debut by appearing in six films in 1956. In the 1950s and 1960s, Newley was everywhere: on screen, on television and several times in the top ten, as his recording career took off and propelled him into stage and screen orbit.
His film appearances include Doctor Doolittle and The Cockleshell Heroes. But he is best known for co-writing and starring in the hit musicals Stop the World- I Want to Get Off and The Roar of the Greasepaint- The Smell of the Crowd, as well as a number of best-selling hit singles, including "What Kind of Fool Am I?" "The Candy Man" and "Goldfinger". In 1989, he and frequent collaborator Leslie Bricusse were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
Stop The World was a landmark in the history of the British musical, notable for its freedom of form and cynicism of content as it charted the bittersweet rise of its central character played by Newley, from tea boy to millionaire. For Newley, its lasting legacy was its songs. They included "Gonna Build a Mountain" and "What Kind of Fool am I?" which sold more than a million records and became his signature tune. Stop The World, for which he was the director, star and co-author (with his longtime collaborator, Leslie Bricusse), was his greatest showcase. In the UK, it played to packed houses for 15 months before transferring to Broadway in 1962, where it ran for 555 performances.
In the United States Newley became one of the very few British singers to make it big on in Las Vegas and the cabaret circuit commanding the same attention as Tony Bennett, Dean Martin or Frank Sinatra, and his rags-to-riches story made him a talk show favorite. In 1977, he was voted the Male Musical Star of the Year in Las Vegas.
In addition to writing the score with Leslie Bricusse for 1971's film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, Newley wrote the score for the 1975 film Mr. Quilp (now broadcast on TV under The Old Curiosity Shop) and with Bricusse the title song for the 1968 film Sweet November and finally with Bricusse the songs for the 1976 TV version of Peter Pan. He also co-wrote with Stanley Ralph Ross the book, music and lyrics for the 1983 stage show Chaplin and created the 1985 revue Once Upon a Song. Newley had been working for many years on a musical version of Richard III and sang some of these songs during his last New York cabaret appearance at Rainbow and Stars in 1996. The BMI database lists over 150 songs for which Newley wrote the music or lyrics. His four U.S. hit songs were "Why?," "If She Should Come to You," "Pop Goes the Weasel" and "What Kind of Fool Am I?." By contrast, he had 12 hit singles in three years in the UK all included in the 1997 CD The Very Best of Anthony Newley. Newley went from child star to pop idol, to composer, author, director and leading man and leaves an amazing body of work. For the last six years of his performing life, he starred in the title role of Leslie Bricusse's musical Scrooge in the UK, which he played to lasting acclaim.
Tim McDonald (Playwright) As a kid, Tim didn't like to read. His teacher, Mrs. Spencer, asked him to read a few pages of Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Tim devoured the entire book in one setting and discovered a life long passion for reading. Tim has been known lately to not only read, but every once in a while to write as well! As a director in the San Francisco/Bay Area, Tim was nominated for several Circle Critics Awards and a West Coast Dramalogue Award for outstanding direction. In addition to directing, Tim served as executive producer of Chico City Light Opera and developed Chico Area Student Theatre (CAST) in conjunction with the Greater Chico School District. Tim's experience in Children's Theatre led him to be recruited by Freddie Gershon at Music Theatre International to develop The Broadway Junior Collection. As Director of Broadway Junior, Tim has worked with Stephen Sondheim, Lynn Ahrens, Stephen Flaherty, Arthur Laurents, Stephen Schwartz and Sir Cameron Mackintosh in the adaptation of their works for young people to perform. Most recently, Tim has been working with Disney Theatrical adapting animation titles into live stage productions. Titles include Cinderella, The Jungle Book, 101 Dalmatians, Aladdin, Sleeping Beauty, Alice in Wonderland, Mulan, and Newsies.
Graham Whitehead (Director) was born in Egypt, raised in England, lived in Canada for almost thirty years and now resides in the United States. Since becoming a permanent resident of the U.S., he has taught at Arizona State University and worked as a freelance actor and director. Directing highlights include Fiddler on the Roof, Dear Esther, Dialogues of the Carmelites, Cabaret, Into the Woods, A Little Night Music, Pippin, Carousel, Comedy of Errors, Driving Miss Daisy, and Comet in Moominland. For the Kennedy Center, Graham has directed Mary Hall Surface's adaptation of The Reluctant Dragon and East of the Sun, West of the Moon and most recently The Emperor's New Clothes. As a playwright, two of his scripts, Just So Stories, and Peter and the Wolf, won awards as outstanding productions from the international puppetry organization UNIMA. Graham was Associate Artistic Director at Childsplay in Tempe Arizona for three years during which he directed numerous pieces including Wolf Child, And Then They Came for Me, Wind in the Willows, Selkie, The Boxcar Children, and The Yellow Boat. He has also appeared as Lincoln in Lincoln's Log and dressed in extremely warm upholstery, when he played the Chair in Y. York's Portrait, Wind and Chair. In addition, he directed Androcles and the Lion for Free Space Theatre in Orel, Russia and made a cameo appearance as the voice of God in Castles in the Sky, which he directed and co-created with Gayle LaJoie. Playing God was much cooler than playing an armchair.
Dreama J. Greaves (Properties Artisan) has served as properties artisan for many Kennedy Center Youth and Family Programs shows. Her credits include such diverse productions as Dreams in the Golden Country; The Adventures of Tom Sawyer; Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing; The Nightingale; Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day and others; many of which have toured nationally. She has a Master of Fine Arts from Northwestern University and free-lances throughout the metro area.
John Higgins (Orchestrator/Conductor) has arranged and adapted a large catalog of music for children's theater, including Leslie Bricusse's Scrooge, youth versions of Annie, Fiddler On The Roof, The Music Man and other classic MTI shows. His score to Into The Woods, Jr. was performed in the 2002 Sondheim Celebration at the Kennedy Center. Recent recording production for school music textbooks included a wonderful collaboration with the late Fred Rogers of Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood. Grammy award-winning projects include arranging on Sandi Patti's Another Time, Another Place (Best Pop Gospel Album) and co-producing Rob McConnell's Live in Digital (Best Big Band Jazz Album). John is a composer-arranger and recording producer for Hal Leonard Corporation, the nation's largest publisher of printed music.
Kevin Hill (Sound Designer) Kevin has recently worked with The Kennedy Center, Folger Shakespeare Theatre, Imagination Stage, The Studio Theatre and the Open Circle Theatres in Washington DC. Before moving to Washington, Kevin was the resident Sound Designer/Composer for the Omaha Theater Company for Young People. Kevin has 15 years experience in sound design and engineering for live theatre, music recording/producing and audio post-production for video and film. He currently owns and operates Studio Unknown, a commercial audio production studio in Baltimore, MD. Kevin's specialties are in creative sound design and custom music composition as well as post-production mixing and sweetening. He has appeared on many online websites providing custom music/sound design for companies such as Discovery Communications, World Bank and Crayola. He has also worked on feature films, TV, radio and corporate videos for such clients as Pfizer, National Instrument Co., St. Vincent DePaul, New Zealand Air and A&E. Feature film Euphoria won GOLD REMI award at Houston Film Festival 2005. His musical composition styles range from many different genres including: rock/ pop, orchestral instrumentation, electronic/ dance and world and ethnic. He has been a part of the live music scene for over 15 years playing electric and acoustic guitars in several bands. He holds a BA in Dramatic Arts from the University of Nebraska at Omaha and is a member of ASCAP, TAXI, ITVA and WIFV.
Les Hooper (Digital Music Programmer) has composed and arranged for films and television, as well as many orchestral commissions and recordings by artists such as The Singers Unlimited, Don Ellis and Ben Sidran. He received 3 Grammy nominations for his first big band album Look What They've Done, and has since garnered many more. Film scores include Back In The USSR and Roadflower, and his music is featured in Being John Malkovich, Any Given Sunday and others. Many of Les' published arrangements and compositions are performed regularly by professional and school ensembles.
James Kronzer (Set Designer) Past shows for Kennedy Center include Cyrano, Shakespeare Stealer, My Lord What a Morning, Bocon and Hidden Terrors. Recent shows in the area: Elegies, Twentieth Century at the Signature Theater, Radiant Abyss, Big Love at Woolly Mammoth, Copenhagen, Monster at the Olney Theater Center, Wintertime, Heartbreak House and Drawer Boy at the Round House Theater and Trudy Blue at the Studio Theater. Elsewhere he has designed shows for the Arden Theater in Philadelphia: The Baker's Wife which won a Barrymore Award and Pacific Overtures; Pioneer Theater Company in Salt Lake City, Milwaukee Rep, Asolo Theater in Florida, Delaware Theater Company and the Weston Playhouse. He has done several national tours for Networks including Showboat, Annie, Big, Damn Yankees and the current tour of Seussical. Museum work of his has been seen at the Museum of Natural History and the National Museum of Women in the Arts, where he worked on the Julie Taymor exhibit. He is currently working on a new production of Cinderella for Disney Cruise lines. He has been nominated for the Helen Hayes Award nineteen times and has received the award five times. He is a member of United Scenic Artists, a board member at the Olney Theater Center and an Artistic Associate for Signature Theater.
Ashburn Miller (Asst. Engineer/ProTools Operator) is a recording engineer at Entourage 5.1 Studios. His audio for television work includes Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Angel and Line Of Fire (which was Emmy nominated for soundtrack production). Ashburn has also recorded artists such as Mariah Carey, Dori Cayami and Don Grusin.
Martha Mountain (Lighting Designer) is pleased to continue her association with YFP, having designed Ric Averil's The Emperor's New Clothes, Suzanne Farrell Stages the Masters of 20th Century Ballet, Paulette Laufer's plays The Great Quillow and Little Women, as well as My Lord, What a Morning, Red Badge of Courage, Walking the Winds, YFP's production of Ken Ludwig and Don Schlitz's Tom Sawyer, and many others. She designs extensively around the region for diverse companies including Round House Theatre, Theatre of the First Amendment, Wolf Trap Opera Company, and Concerts from the Library of Congress. Ms. Mountain serves as resident lighting designer for Bowen McCauley Dance (www.bmdc.org). She has taught lighting design at George Mason University and at the University of Maryland, and is a member of United Scenic Artists, Local USA-829 (IATSE).
Rosemary Pardee (Costume Designer) has long been regarded as Washington's busiest costume designer. Her career has spanned thirty-three years, almost five hundred productions, dozens of theatre and film companies and little sleep. Her work has been seen at The Kennedy Center, the National Theatre, Arena Stage, the Folger Theatre and the Smithsonian Institute. She holds resident design positions at the Round House Theatre, InterACT Theatre Company, Everyman Theatre, and Gallaudet University's Department of Theatre. Rosemary also adjudicates the Maryland State Theatre Scholarship Program. She has designed costumes for national tours of The Importance of Being Earnest, The Grapes of Wrath, Of Mice and Men, Frankenstein and A Few Good Men. Ms. Pardee is a recipient (and eight-time nominee) of the Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding Costume Design. For the Kennedy Center's Youth and Family Programs, she has designed The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, The Magic Rainforest, Into the Woods Junior, Tom Sawyer and Alexander, Who's Not Not Not Not Not Not Going to Move.
Marie Schneggenburger (Puppet Design) designs have been seen in several Kennedy Center Youth and Family Programs productions, including Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse, Dreams, The Magic Rainforest and The Nightingale. She also works for the Washington Opera, The Shakespeare Theatre, Arena Stage, and other organizations around town.
Andy Waterman (Recording Supervisor/Mixer) has supervised recorded soundtracks for hundreds of theatrical productions in the US, Europe and Asia. As a music producer, engineer-mixer, and sound designer he has been nominated for 4 Grammy Awards (recently for Wayne Bergeron's 2003 jazz CD You Call This a Living?), 2 Emmy nominations for soundtrack production (including the ABC series Line of Fire), and won a Clio Award for the Hot Music campaign. Among many recording projects for children are the Disney Channel series Kids Incorporated and Sing Me a Story. Andy is the recording producer for Hal Leonard's Music Express Magazine, which reaches thousands of schools and is the co-founder of Young Vocal Artists of Los Angeles, a multi-cultural children's choir that performs a wide range of music for kids.
Deborah Wicks La Puma (Musical Director) is delighted to be working at the Kennedy Center with Youth and Family Programs once again. She is the recipient of the Jane Chambers Playwriting Award, the Robert M. Golden Award, an N.E.A. New American Works Grant, and was a 2000 Helen Hayes nominee for Outstanding Musical Direction. Her work for young audiences has been commissioned and premiered at the Kennedy Center (Walking the Winds, The Magic Rainforest) and Imagination Stage (Cinderella Eats Rice and Beans, The Magical Piñata and Ferdinand the Bull) and Atlanta's Alliance Theatre (Einstein is a Dummy). Ms. La Puma received her MFA from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts and her BA from Stanford University.
Ingrid Zimmer (Choreographer) Willy Wonka is the second show Ingrid has choreographed for the Kennedy Center. She has been choreographing musicals in the D.C. area for the last 7 years. Some of her credits include Guys and Dolls, Anything Goes, Grease, South Pacific, Kiss Me Kate, Ragtime, and Fiddler on the Roof. Ingrid is also a professional dancer; she has performed throughout the United States, Europe and Mexico. Currently, Ingrid performs with Bowen McCauley Dance and is the director of the dance program at the National Cathedral School.
Matthew A. Anderson (Augustus Gloop) is thrilled to a part of the Kennedy Center's first national tour of Roald Dahl's Willy Wonka. A proud native of Boise, Idaho, this show marks his professional debut. Most recently, he understudied several roles for Signature Theatre's Pacific Overtures in Arlington, VA. Other favorite credits: The Who's TOMMY, City of Angels, One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, Suburb, HONK!, Blood Brothers, and 42nd Street. "Much love to my Heavenly Father – for all of my blessings. Special thanks and love to my family, the Block's, the Gonzalez's, RO, KM, TC and SF for your friendship, love and support. Mom and Dad – this one is for you!" Good times, great oldies....
Andrew Frace (Willy Wonka) Theatre: How to Succeed In Business Without Really Trying, Ragtime, Snoopy!, Return to The Forbidden Planet (Heritage Rep. Theatre, VA); Grease, Beauty & The Beast (Toby's Dinner Theatre, MD); Chorus Line, Joseph . . . Dreamcoat, Annie Get Your Gun (Papermill Theatre, NH); Billy Budd (Wash. Nat'l Opera, DC); A Southern Christmas Carol (Cotton Hall Theatre, GA); Fiddler on The Roof, Smokey Joe's Café w/ Ken Ard, The Sound of Music, Godspell (Main Street Theatre, PA). Film/TV: Carmax Commercial (Film Head Prod.), USS Cole Documentary (History Channel), First Aid Video (American Red Cross), Healthy Worklife (Redmon Group. Inc.). Voiceover: DEA-Target America (Redmon Group Inc.), Workplace Ethics (Brightline Compliance Online). Degree: BFA Music Theatre, Psychology Minor, Elon University, NC. Thanks to family and friends.
Tara Giordano (Veruca Salt-Fall 2005) has been an actor in the DC area for three years, where she has worked at: Arena Stage, Folger Theatre, Olney Theatre Center, Washington Stage Guild, Washington Shakespeare Company, and many others. She was also a drama teacher there (grades K-12), and performed improvisational comedy with Comedy Sportz before her recent move to NYC. She is elated to be touring with such a talented and fun-loving cast and crew. For Kirk.
Jackie Lamptey (Violet Beauregard) A big fan of Roald Dahl, Jackie Lamptey is super pleased to be a part of the cast of Willy Wonka in her touring debut! Raised in Fairfax, Virginia,Jackie graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2004 with a BFA in Theatre. Some past credits include Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill, Joseph...Dreamcoat, Smokey Joe's Cafe, Hello Dolly!, HAIR, The Secret Garden, Sing Down the Moon, Charlotte's Web, Cyrano de Bergerac, and Seussical the Musical. She would like to thank God, her ever-supportive family, and beloved circle of friends.
Jen Morris (Mrs. Bucket, Wonka Assistant ) is delighted to return to this delicious story many years after making her theatrical debut as Grandpa Joe (yes, Grandpa Joe!) in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory as a sixth grader in Ohio. Jen is a graduate of American University in Washington, DC, where she has worked extensively over the past two years. Select regional credits include The Wild Party (Queenie); Nine – The Musical (Carla); Songs for a New World (Woman 1); and The Yeoman of the Guard (Phoebe). She has also appeared in several PSA's and commercials and works as a print model. For Mom, Dad, Geoff, and Loren.
Gillian Shelly (Veruca Salt-Spring 2006) Gillian is happy to be back on tour after last being seen 'round the country as Mrs. Claus in the original cast of Sing Along Santa by Phoenix Productions.She attended Greensboro College where she studied Theatre and Theology (go figure!). Favorite roles include Gertrude in Seussical, Lucy in ...Charlie Brown, Rizzo in Grease, the Wicked Witch in Wizard of Oz, and Maggie Jones in 42nd Street. She was also seen as Sibyl in Private Lives, Winnifred in Once Upon a Mattress, and as Edwin Drood in The Mystery of...,and Luisa in The Fantasticks. She would like to thank her family for supporting her (in many ways). "Love - always - to Yeti."
Chris Sizemore (Mike Teavee, Mr. Bucket) Regional Credits: Bye Bye Birdie (Albert), Grease (Danny), Joseph...Dreamcoat (Pharaoh), A Little Night Music (Henrik), Peter Pan (Pirate), Carnival (Paul), The Wizard of Oz (Scarecrow), My Fair Lady (Quartet), The King & I (Lun Tha), The Mikado (Nanki Poo). Professional Credits: Miss Saigon (Chris), Beauty and The Beast (Ensemble/Cogsworth (u/s)/ D'arque (u/s)), Grease (Doody). Chris has also performed concerts in New York City and West Virginia. He would like to give a special thank you to his family and friends for their support.
Eric Thompson (Charlie Bucket) has been an actor in Washington, DC, since he graduated from The Catholic University of America in 2003. He has worked with Signature Theater, Actor's Theatre of Washington and the Kennedy Center. He is thrilled to be involved in this production and would like to dedicate his performance to his nieces and nephews.
Diego Prieto (Understudy) is thrilled to be a part of this great piece of theatre. Born and raised in DC, Diego has always wanted to be a part of a treasured performing arts icon like the Kennedy Center. This came to fruition when Diego starred as Augustus in the Youth and Family Programs' premiere of Roald Dahl's Willy Wonka. You can also hear him on the original cast recording of the show. Diego's favorite roles include Jose/Ensemble in Arena Stage's World Premiere Senor Discretion Himself, by Frank Loesser, the Baker in Kensington Art Theatre's Into the Woods, Riff Raff in KAT's The Rocky Horror Show and Dr. Hall in 1776 at the West End. Diego is a proud member of Actors' Equity. Thank you to the cast and crew for bringing this magical journey to life and to Graham for the opportunity! Diego proudly dedicates this show to Donovan and Sebastian.
Brian Rodda (Understudy) is honored to be working with the Kennedy Center again on such a scrumtrulecent show. Brian previously toured the nation for the Kennedy Center during 2004-2005 with Alexander Who's Not... Going To Move. Regional credits include Cinderella with The Sacramento Theatre Company, A Class Act (U/S) with Studio Theatre, The Robber Bridegroom with American Century Theatre, and another children's classic Miss Nelson Has A Field Day with Imagination Stage. Other favorite shows include Romeo and Juliet, Cabaret and Wit. Brian is originally from Loomis, California and holds a BA in Spanish from UC Davis. Brian would like to thank his supportive family.
Tour Technical Staff
Elisa J. Rupert (Production Stage Manager) currently resides in New York City and is delighted to be working for the Kennedy Center on Roald Dahl's Willy Wonka. Most recently she was the Production Stage Manager for the National Tour of Eternal Search with Cedar Lake Ensemble II, as well as the National Tours of Sarah Plain & Tall and Menopause: The Musical. Some of her other Stage Management credits include: the East Coast Premeire of Him & Her, A Grand Night For Singing, Annie Get Your Gun, The Fantastics, West Side Story, Some Like It Hot, the eleven-month run of I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change!, Honk! The Ugly Duckling, Peter Pan, Annie, Man of La Mancha, and Forever Plaid.
Todd Hendricks (Sound and Set Supervisor) is excited to join the Kennedy Center for this production of Roald Dahl's Willy Wonka. Todd studied music and theatre at Southwestern University. His sound and lighting designs have been featured in classic and original works for theatre and opera in Texas as well as this past summer as resident sound designer for the Mac-Haydn Theatre in Chatham, NY. As a musician, Todd performed across the country as the bassist for the 25th anniversary national tour of Ain't Misbehavin'. He has also performed classically as a cellist with symphony orchestras throughout Texas and New Mexico.
Chris Schardin (Puppet Master) has worked as a puppeteer, technical director, lighting director, sound engineer, and scenic carpenter for companies in North America and the Caribbean. He's happy to be back with the Kennedy Center again after previous tours with Harlem, A Light in the Storm, and The Nightingale.
Emily Steger (Assistant Technical Director/Props and Wardrobe) is touring this season for the second time with the Kennedy Center's Imagination Celebration. She is very excited for this opportunity and is looking forward to her time with the company. Emily has had the opportunity to work with several theatrical companies in the past few years in many different aspects of technical theatre. Most recently she traveled to Alaska to work with University of Alaska's Theatre for Young People. Emily's theatrical credits include The Sound of Music, Shakespeare's As You Like It, Death of A Salesman, and The Emperor's New Clothes.
Travis McHale (Lighting Director) is a New York based, free-lance lighting designer, and is thrilled to be making his debut with the Kennedy Center. Recent design work in New York: Proof, for Ground up Productions at Manhattan Theatre Source, and Pluck Project, a modern dance concert, at the Lincoln Center Institute. Recent lighting design work regionally: The musicals, A Year With Frog and Toad, and john & jen for Weston Playhouse, a season as resident designer for Ballet Spartanburg (SC). Other work in the Southeast, Tommy, Pump Boys and Dinettes, Big River, A Man of No Importance, Of Mice and Men, to name a few. He was previously the lighting director of the tour, Cyrano, also for Weston. Travis hails from Los Angeles and holds a B.F.A. in lighting design from N.C. School of the Arts.
* Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka is a professional production employing members of Actors' Equity Association