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The Double V
CAST (click photos for larger images)
JOHN APICELLA * (FBI Agent Taylor, others). This is John’s fourth appearance on the Matrix stage (Strictly Dishonorable, Rough Crossing, Little Egypt). As a founding member of The Antaeus Company he appeared in The Caucasian Chalk Circle, Diana of Dobson’s, Hothouse, The Curse of Oedipus, You Can’t Take It With You, Mother Courage and her Children, Trial By Jury, The Truth Can’t Be Trusted, Patience, The Liar, The Man Who Had All the Luck, and The Wood Demon. On other US stages: Hillary and Bill (Victory Gardens, Chicago), The Imaginary Invalid, Glengarry Glen Ross, The First Picture Show, (ACT San Francisco), 36 Views (Laguna Playhouse), A Christmas Carol (Dallas Theater Center), Archy and Mehitabel: A Back Alley Opera (The Yard, Martha’s Vineyard), Temptation, The Wood Demon (The Mark Taper Forum), Sex Parasite, Largo Desolato (Taper, Too), The History Boys (Ahmanson), Durango (East West Players), Marathon Madness, Juno and the Paycock, White Marriage (Odyssey Theatre Ensemble), and many other shows over the past 40 years in Los Angeles’ intimate theaters. For film and TV, please see
PRESTON BUTLER III * (James “Jimmy” Thompson). Touted by the LA Times as a “physical and emotional power seldom encountered on any stage,” Preston Butler III is a rare triple threat. Butler makes his Matrix debut after his performance as ‘Kitch’ in the West Coast Premiere of Pass Over by Antionette Nwandu at ACT Seattle. Earlier this year, he also played ‘The Greatest’ Muhammad Ali in Fetch Clay, Make Man, a play exploring Ali’s friendship with Hollywood’s first black millionaire, Stepin Fetchit. Butler also starred in The Royale, Marco Rameriz’ play based on the life of the world’s first African American heavyweight champ and Ali’s biggest inspiration, Jack Johnson. Internationally, Butler toured in France with the World Premiere of FORE!, a new play written by the 2018 Obie Award-winner Aleshea Harris, and performed in a musical drama that he co-created in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Other credits include: Gem of the Ocean (South Coast Rep), Sense and Sensibility (South Coast Rep), Hecuba (Stella Adler Theater), and Cotton Patch Gospel (American Coast Theater). He is a Graduate of the MFA Acting Program at the California Institute of the Arts. Phil 4:13
JOE COFFEY * (Charlie Simpson) was recently seen in the original play titled These Streets at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this past summer. Past theatre credits include Orsino in Twelfth Night, Shelly Levene in Glengarry Glen Ross, and Macduff in Macbeth. Recent film credits include East of Middle West, Dark Arrows, and Guest of Honor. Joe has been one of the faces of the Dodge Brothers commercial campaign for the past 5 years portraying 1920s Detroit auto-founder, Horace Dodge. He is represented by Eileen O’Farrell Management, 90210 Talent and Abrams Artists Agency. For more on Joe, please visit soli Deo gloria
BRIE ELEY * (Madge Evans) is an actress and content creator from Sugar Land, Texas. After training at Marymount Manhattan College and the British American Drama Academy, she performed onstage regionally and in New York City. Favorites include The Kennedy Center Brave No World, Actors Theatre of Louisville’s The Shaker Chair, Kings County Shakespeare Company’s Twelfth Night, and The Classical Theatre of Harlem’s Trojan Women. After one blizzard too many she relocated to Los Angeles, where she continues to perform on stage with Jewish Women’s Theatre’s True Colors, Skylight Theatre’s Obama-ology and in readings for EST/LA, Antaeus, and A Noise Within. Since relocating, she’s appeared on television, in commercials, and in independent film including Grey’s Anatomy, Criminal Minds, Brooklyn 99, 2 Broke Girls, and the multi-award-winning films Night Call and Dekalb Elementary (2018 Oscar nomination, Best Short Film). As a creator, she has advanced to the finals of the NBC Short Cuts Festival and secured distribution through BET and Amazon Prime. You also might catch her flexing her comedy chops around town at The Pack, Comedy Central Stage, Second City, or UCB. Brie is a proud member of Actor’s Equity and SAG-AFTRA. She loves traveling, tequila, and teacup pigs. Thank you to Leigh, Michael, and Carole for the opportunity to honor the reporters of the Pittsburgh Courier and bring Madge to life. @brieeley
NIC FEW * (Ira Lewis) is a native of Atlanta, Georgia. He earned a Master of Fine Arts from Brown University and graduated from Clark Atlanta University with a Master’s in Education Administration. As a member of the Screen Actors, Nic has been afforded a variety of opportunities in film, television, and web series. Among his most recent projects are ABC’s The Catch, Warner Brothers Picture’s CHiPs and InHale Entertainment & Full Frequency Media’s award-winning short 90 Days. His past credits include Balls to The Wall, The Undying, The Chadwick Chronicles, TV Land’s The Exes, CBS’s Eleventh Hour, NBC’s Go On, TNT’s Major Crimes, and TBS’s Blotter! His regional, national, and international theater credits include Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream, Romeo and Juliet, and Julius Caesar, Black Birds, Molière’s The Misanthrope, Ends Eve, Sex Acts, Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, The Ballad of Emmett Till, Black Nativity, The America Play, Topdog Underdog, Confluence, Measure for Measure, Tartuffe, Tambourines to Glory, Spunk, and The Cherry Orchard.
JAMAL HENDERSON (Joe Bibb, Chris Thompson) is new to the theater world, with his introduction coming during the Hollywood Fringe Festival, where he originated his role of Ricky Beats in an Encore-Award-winning original play No More Toys, written and directed by Pierce Minor. His on-screen credits include his starring role as Davonte in the film South Central Love, currently traveling the festival circuit. He is also a writer and producer having produced his own short film Past and Presence, co-produced a horror anthology web-series Macabre, and a series of spoken word visual shorts titled Things are Beautifully Bad. He always brings this quiet yet bold confidence to his work and when you see him on camera and on stage. You can find excerpts of his poetry across his social media platforms penned under the name “RHEN” and is currently working on turning his poetry into a book.
TERRA STRONG LYONS (Annie Culver) is an award-winning actor, singer and dancer. She started her career in entertainment at the illustrious School for Creative and Performing Arts high school in Cincinnati, Ohio. Since the age of 13, she has worked in professional regional and national theatre, mostly musical theatre. Some of her credits include Timoune in Once of this Island, Lutiebelle in Ossie Davis’ Broadway Musical Purlie, Fats Waller’s Ain’t Misbehavin’, High School Musical, and Hairspray. Upon high school graduation, Terra moved to Nashville, Tennessee where she joined the world-renowned Jimmy Church Showband and traveled internationally as a headline singer and dancer for 5 years. Terra is also a film actress, this year receiving a nomination for Best Guest Actress in a Drama Series for her performance in the 8x Emmy Nominated web series Conversations in LA. This year, Terra also starred in the feature film Zoombies 2 as the lead villain. Terra is overjoyed about making her debut at the Matrix Theatre in this beautiful and important story. She dedicates this show to the most loving and supportive husband, Dominic.
CARY THOMPSON (Frank Bolden, Clem Thompson). Originally from Chickasha, Oklahoma, Cary is thrilled to work with Carole Eglash again, and with Michael Arabian and such a wonderful cast on a work that needs to be broadcast world-wide. “If we don’t remember history, we are doomed to repeat it.” Cary is a member of The Odyssey’s Koan Group, and The Michael Chekhov Theater Company. Thanks to all for their hard work and dedication. Laissez les bons temps rouler!
PRODUCTION STAFF (click photos for larger images)
CAROLE EGLASH-KOSOFF (Playwright) lives and writes in Valley Village, California. The Double V is the historic follow up to her multi-award-winning production of When Jazz Had the Blues. She has also published five books and wrote and directed an award-winning short documentary The Life & Art of David Labkovski. In 2006, following the deaths of her husband, mother, and brother in a single month, she traveled to South Africa to teach in the black townships and pen her first book, The Human Spirit – Apartheid’s Unheralded Heroes which was later produced as a play at the Odyssey Theatre garnering favorable reviews. Her second novel, When Stars Align, a historical fiction novel, dealt with the love of a mixed-race boy and a white girl in the turbulent era after the Civil War, and became her second play. Winds of Change, her third novel, continued that saga. Sex, Drugs, & Fashion, her next book, fictionalized the decades she spent working in the apparel industry. Her fifth book, By One Vote, is dramatized non-fiction, telling twelve true stories of events in American history, shaped by a single vote. Carole graduated from UCLA, has visited nearly seventy countries, and oversees the A Better Way Scholarship Program that grants scholarships to graduating high school seniors.
MICHAEL ARABIAN (Director) has directed (both in New York and Los Angeles) numerous world premieres, winning over 50 awards. A Producer, Director, Writer, and Teacher, he also founded Theatre InSite at CBS Studios-Radford, forming a partnership with CBS to produce site-specific environmental theatre and develop shows for film and TV, utilizing their back lot and sound stages. Michael now runs InSite Productions, an independent company that develops and writes projects, at time collaborating with other writers and producers in Theatre, Film, and TV. His production of Waiting For Godot at the Mark Taper Forum was honored with five Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Awards, including outstanding production and direction; was nominated for 10 Ovation awards, winning five, including best production and was cited as one of the ten most memorable productions of 2012 seen in either New York or LA by Los Angeles Times critic Charles McNulty, who called it a “luminous revival.” In addition to the Mark Taper, he has directed at such theaters as the Roundabout in New York, the Getty Villa, San Diego Rep, Laguna Playhouse, La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts, Rogue Machine, Odyssey Theatre, the Hudson, and the Actors Studio, among others. He has taught many acting and directing programs, most notably at the USC Film School, USC School of Dramatic Arts, Howard Fine Studio, and the L.A. Film School.
LEIGH FORTIER (Producer). Plays produced by Leigh have garnered numerous awards, including the recent Best Musical Production Ovation Award for When Jazz Had The Blues, over 20 LA Weekly Awards, 18 NAACP Awards (26 Nominations), three of five GLAAD Media Awards nominations for Best Play in one season (including award recipient Medea, the Musical). Highlights include multiple award winning plays The Talented Tenth directed by Oz Scott and starring Robert Guillaume at the Hudson Avenue Theatre, Up The Mountain by Kevin Arkadie (numerous production awards and LA Times 10 Best), and Kathy and Mo: The Dark Side starring Kathy Najimy and Mo Gaffney (co-produced with Jimmy Nederlander at the Henry Fonda Theatre). Along with Burn This (directed by Jessica Kubzansky at the Odyssey Theatre), The New Bozena (directed by Rainn Wilson), Walking the Blonde (presented by Kathy Bates and Sharon Gless), Snakebit by David Marshall Grant (nominated for GLAAD Media Award), and the World Premiere Pope Joan for Broadway producer Michael Butler (HAIR). Leigh produced and co-created the hit musical A Gay Christmas Carol (GLAAD Media Award nomination for Outstanding Production). Leigh also produced Room 105 (about Janis Joplin) starring Sophie B Hawkins, critically acclaimed award-winning Serrano The Musical (directed by Joel Zwick with Book and Lyrics by Madeline Sunshine). Other recent critically acclaimed productions include When Stars Align (Odyssey theatre) and When Jazz Had the Blues (Matrix theatre), and Gruesome Playground Injuries at the Hudson Theatres. Leigh’s upcoming projects include Nature is a Hanging Judge, and a web TV pilot West Bollywood.
PAM NOLES (Production Stage Manager) is a former cop reporter and features columnist whose work has appeared in outlets ranging from the Los Angeles Times to Vibe Magazine. She now works as a stage manager (Catch the Tiger, Hell Cab, Lone Star, The Watsons Go to Birmingham, Proof, Saugerties), and costume designer (Zombies from the Beyond, Lovecraft: Nightmare Suite, Amon Amrath’s Father of the Wolf, Revolutionary the Musical, Jingle A-Go-Go, and many Renaissance Faire participants). She often performs on storytelling stages including BUSted, Sunday Night Sex Talks, Rant ’n Rave, and the Turbine Arts Collective. She debuted her Michael Bay-infused longform story show ! Death 40-Feet Tall ! at the first Hollywood Fringe Festival. A graduate of the Clarion Writer’s Workshop, her fiction has appeared in anthologies from Warner Books, Dark Horse Comics, Terra Major, Pulphouse, and various APAs. She lives on Twitter @BGFCentral, was probably the one who stopped you from sneaking into Hall H that one time, and do not ever ask her why Grendel should have kicked Batman’s ass during that crossover unless you have a lot of time on your hands.
JOHN IACOVELLI (Scenic Design) created memorable designs for more than 300 plays and musicals at most major theatres in the US including Steppenwolf Theatre Company, McCarter Theatre Center, Long Wharf Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Geffen Playhouse, Pasadena Playhouse, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Goodman Theatre, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and Center Theatre Group. He is the resident Scenic Designer at the Matrix Theatre. Iacovelli received a primetime Emmy for the broadcast of the Broadway production of Cathy Rigby is Peter Pan. He was the production designer on Ruby in Paradise starring Ashley Judd, and art director on Honey, I Shrunk the Kids! His television credits include The Old Settler starring Phylicia Rashad and Debbie Allen, The Gin Game staring Mary Tyler Moore and Dick Van Dyke, Babylon 5, Ed, Resurrection Blvd. and Lincoln Heights. He has an MFA in scenic design from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. Website:
CHRIS MOSCATIELLO (Sound Design). Recipient of the 2015 Stage Raw award and 2014 Ovation nomination for sound design, Christopher Moscatiello is also a composer, music director and sound editor/mixer for theater, television, and film. Recent television credits include The Walking Dead (AMC), Psych (USA), Eureka (SyFy), Caprica (SyFy), The Cape (NBC), Trauma (NBC), Human Target (Fox), and he has scored full series for National Geographic and Discovery Channel, as well as specials and promos for HBO, Animal Planet, MSNBC, The History Channel, The Learning Channel, BBC, and ZDF Germany. Theater credits include The Kennedy Center, Arena Stage, The Folger Shakespeare Theater, The Smithsonian Institution, Antaeus Theatre Company, Odyssey Theatre Ensemble, The Fountain Theatre, Rogue Machine Theatre, Skylight Theatre Company, Pacific Resident Theatre, and The Road Theater; and he served as assistant conductor for the national tour of The Phantom of the Opera. An East Coast native, Chris spent several years in Boston as Associate Artistic Director and Conductor of the Boston Chamber Ensemble. During that period, he wrote a ballet commissioned by the Kirov Ballet Academy that had its world premiere in Washington, DC. While on the East Coast, he was the production music director for the theater program at American University, and the supervising composer for The Washington Opera’s Create and Produce program. He also served as Master Sound Engineer for the Washington Folklore Society Folk Festival, Staff Engineer at Wooden Nickel Sound and Recording, and as Technical Director for The Stage Door theater program in Arlington, Va.
JOHN A. SAYEG (Lighting Designer) is a five-time Ovation Award nominee and winner of the Ovation, StageRaw, Garland, and the LADDC Kinetic Lighting Awards. His designs have been seen throughout the U.S., Canada, Spain, and Edinburgh. On-Broadway, he designed the magic spectacle The Illusionists and two national tours as well as Bravo Bernstein and Gotham Glory at Carnegie Hall. Regional: Center Theatre Group, Pasadena Playhouse, South Coast Repertory, 5th Avenue Theatre, Sacramento Music Circus, International City Theatre, Reprise, Laguna Playhouse, Virginia Stage Company, The Colony, and Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey. West End: he designed Rolling with Laughter at Her Majesty’s Theatre. He was on the design teams for the Broadway productions of PRIMO, The Woman in White, The Radio City Christmas Spectacular, and the Blithe Spirit national tour starring Angela Lansbury. Other designs include productions for Holland America and Norwegian Cruise Lines, the 2011 NBA All Star Game, LA Lakers at Staples Center, Neil Diamond’s world tour, and the LA Auto Show; he had the honor of lighting Pope Benedict XVI for the Papal Rally in NYC. Jared is principal designer for the prestigious USA International Ballet Competition held every four years and creates the lighting for the nationally touring music group The Company Men. His architectural designs are seen regularly in restaurants and exhibits as well as the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific. Member of the International Association of Lighting Designers and the youngest member to join the United Scenic Artists-Local 829, he serves as a trustee on the executive board.
DANA REBECCA WOODS (Costume Designer) is happy to be collaborating with Michael Arabian; Carole Eglash Kosoff, Leigh Fortier and the wonderful design team assembled for Double V. Her design work includes The Color Purple directed by Jeffrey Polk; Sheldon Epps’ Blues in the Night at San Francisco’s Post Street Theater Laguna Playhouse, and The Wallis; In the Red and Brown Water at UC Santa Barbara; Shout Sister Shout, Stop Kiss, Above the Fold, Fences, and others for The Pasadena Playhouse; and Jitney and Fences at South Coast Repertory. Her film and television designs include Go for Sisters for John Sayles and Watch Over Me for Fox Television. Dana taught at the University of Central Florida and is a member of USA Local 829; Costume Designers Guild Local; and Motion Picture Costumers. She is a Labor Organizer for the Costume Designers Guild and an IATSE Delegate to the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor. When not designing productions or involved with labor activities, Dana creates teaching artist curriculum for after school programs.
BYRON J. BATISTA (Hair, Consultation). Byron just finished designing hair for The Boy from Oz at the Celebration Theatre, Wizard of OZ at Glendale Center Theatre and The Wild Party, 9 To 5 at Glendale Center Theatre, Serrano!, Directed by Joel Zwick, LA Shakespeare’s production of Romeo And Juliet as well as Thoroughly Modern Millie with CTG and Hair at the Hollywood Bowl. Some of his favorite productions include: Bronies, The Musical, (World Premiere), Heathers (World Premiere), Chicago, Les Miserables, The Producers (Hollywood Bowl), Hairspray (Hollywood Bowl, Moonlight Amphitheatre, MTW, First National Tour), I Love Lucy, Live! (World Premiere), Jekyll and Hyde, Baby, It’s You, Stormy Weather w/ Leslie Uggams (Pasadena Playhouse), Carnival, Radio Girl, James and the Giant Peach (Goodspeed Musicals), Diamonds Are Forever w/ Jennifer Leigh Warren, The Color Purple (Stanford University), Silence! The Musical, Wicked (Pantages Theatre), Hello, Dolly! w/ Sally Struthers, Cabaret w/ Andrea McArdle, Radiance w/ Anna Gunn, Next Fall w/ Leslie Ann Warren, Red Hot Patriot w/ Kathleen Turner, Miss Julie w/ Lily Rabe (Geffen Playhouse), Citizen Twain w/ Val Kilmer,and Always… Patsy Cline with Sally Struthers. Byron has taught Theatrical Hair and Make-Up at UC Irvine where he designed such shows as Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson, A Christmas Carol, and Spring Awakening, among others.
DAVID SAEWERT (Props Master). Resident Props Master and Department Manager at South Coast Repertory Theater, over 200 shows including: Amadeus, Once, The Tempest, Moby Dick, Chinglish, Sweeney Todd as well as several world premieres: Vietgone, Office Hour, and Cambodian Rock Band. Other theater credits: A Midsummers Night’s Dream (UCI), The Winter’s Tale (UCI), Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson (The Chance), Scraps (The Matrix), Harvey (Laguna Playhouse), and Joy Wheel (Ruskin Group Theatre). Proud member IATSE and servers as a trustee on the Orange County School Board.
RITA COLFIELD * (Rehearsal Stage Manager) has stage-managed all over town for over 20 years. She has worked with Actor’s Co-op, Inkwell Theater Company, Theater West, A Noise Within, Theatre 40, Antaeus, and the Academy of New Musical Theater. She has given her time to The Watts Village Theater Company playing the role of stage manager, artistic curator, and special projects manager. She has toured as the Production Manager for several Urban Theater productions, including Redemption of a Dogg starring Snoop Dogg. She has directed the world premiere of Madame President at the historical El Portal and the world premiere of What I Never Told You at this year’s Fringe Festival at The Complex. She has added historic preservation to her current endeavors and is a candidate for the Masters in Heritage Conservation. Rita is well-rounded in the art of working behind-the-scenes and enjoys projects where her gifts and talents help to bring historic events to life. Here’s to Victory for racial equality in the 21st century!
PEGGY TAYLOR (Wardrobe Supervisor) is an innovative Fashion Stylist, Costume Designer, and Wardrobe Consultant/Supervisor. With Ms. Taylor’s 15 years’ experience, her portfolio ranges from fashion editorials to music videos, album covers, red carpet styling, theater/film costume design, and more. Her work has been seen on Veux online magazine, Cielo online and print magazine and Vogue Italia. She has worked on several productions such as When Jazz Had the Blues, The Soul Café starring Loretta Devine, Let the Church Roll On starring Ledisi, and Wing on Wing at Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, Disney Concert Hall. Peggy’s dynamic personality and positive energy set her apart from the rest. Always a joyful and active collaborator, Peggy prides herself in not only being unique and cutting edge, but also being able to simultaneously represent several demographics, and making all her clients feel beautiful inside and out. She welcomes you to visit her company’s website and explore what dynamic services her company has to offer. Join her in the journey of “Contributing to the World’s Beauty.”
CEEBS BAILEY (Social Media Manager). Ceebs is the Creative Director of CoconutMilk Creative, a marketing, branding, and social media agency based in LA. Hop on that smart phone right now and “check-in” on Facebook at THE DOUBLE V Play — be sure to tag the people you came with, as well. Please also “Like” our Facebook page and tell all your friends, co-workers, and neighbors what an amazing time you had this evening and how you were so very smart to come see this theatrical event. (Word of mouth is still Queen.) If you want a savvy marketing team that walks the walk, get in touch.
Renee Cash (Associate Producer).
Anita Lee (Public Relations, Kuker/Lee).
Jami Rudofsky (Casting Director).
Ryan Dempsey (Master Electrical).
Fritz Davis (Video Design).
Jolie K. Hall (Sound Assistant).
* Member of Actors’ Equity Association, The Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States