Michael is a well known fact back stage at The Playhouse. As a Fight Director/Intimacy Coach he has worked on numerous Westport Country Playhouse productions: Mlima’s Tale, Skeleton Crew, Man of La Mancha, The Understudy, A Flea In Her Ear, Flyin’ West, Romeo and Juliet, Appropriate, Lettice and Lovage, Camelot, The Invisible Hand, Art/Red, Broken Glass,The Liar, Nora, Room Service, Harbor, Loot, A Raisin in the Sun, Tartuffe, Into the Woods. Broadway: A Tale of Two Cities. Regional: The Acting Company, The Public Theater, Asolo Rep, Yale Repertory Theatre, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, The Old Globe, Geffen Playhouse, Long Wharf Theatre, McCarter Theatre, Primary Stages, Delaware REP, SoHo Repertory Theatre, Baltimore’s Center Stage, Goodspeed Opera House, Paper Mill Playhouse, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Huntington Theatre, ShakespeareTheatre, Rattlestick Theater, Pace University, Cherry Lane Theatre, and others. He was nominated for a 2016 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Fight Direction. Michael is a faculty member at the Yale School of Drama where he teaches Stage Combat, and serves as the Stage Combat and Intimacy Supervisor for all undergraduate productions at Yale College.
Jennean Farmer with Jacob Santos
Thu, August 27 at 4PM
Jennean Farmer was most recently seen at the Playhouse in Mlima's Tale (2019). She received her Master of Fine Arts in Acting from The New School for Drama in New York City in 2015. Before receiving her MFA, Jennean served eight years in the military and is an Operation Iraqi Freedom War Veteran. She also has a background in Radio/Television Broadcasting having worked professionally as a traffic reporter. A few of her credits include: NYC Theater Toni Stone (Roundabout Theatre), Ain't No Mo' (The Public Theater); Regional, Think before You Holla (DC Fringe Festival), A Piece of MY Heart (Speranza Theatre Company); Television/Film, "FBI" on CBS, "One Tree Hill," "How the Light Gets In" on Amazon Prime, "Smile."
Host Jacob Santos
Jacob Santos, 2019-2020 Newman’s Own Foundation Managing Director Fellow at Westport Country Playhouse, is a 25-year-old Afro-Latino young professional who is passionate about using theater as a tool for social justice. He is the founder of the Crescent Players of Color, a coalition formed between current students and alumni of color at SCSU. In 2019, he graduated with honors with a Bachelors of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting, and a Bachelors of Arts in Theatre. He has held the position of Managing Intern/Casting Associate at The Elm Shakespeare Company in New Haven, CT. Jacob is the 2019 recipient of The ASPIRE KCACT LORT Leadership Award, Region 1 Finalist. Additionally, he was the recipient of the KCACTF 2019 Arts Impact Award. He will begin studying Theater Management at the Yale School of Drama in the fall of 2020.
Michael P. Gotch with Jacob Santos
Thu, August 6 at 4PM
Michael is a founding member of The REP, the professional resident company at the Roselle Center for the Arts at the University of Delaware, and has performed in over 50 productions since its inaugural season in 2008/09, including the development of many new works and world premieres by Theresa Rebeck, China Hutchinson, Greg Leaming, and Adrian Hall. He also teaches in the College of Arts and Sciences there. Outside The REP, Michael continues to work around the country at a number of leading theaters, including Westport Country Playhouse, Theatre for a New Audience (NYC), The Acting Company (NYC), Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, South Coast Rep, and ACT, to name a few. As a writer, his second play Starter Pistolwas selected for the 2019 Ashland New Plays Festival and was a semifinalist for both the 2019 Eugene O’Neill National Playwrights Conference and the 2019 Blue Ink Playwriting Award. Starter Pistol was workshopped as part of the New Works Circle at Westport Country Playhouse in 2019, and subsequently enjoyed its world premiere at Delaware REP in February 2020. His first play,Minor Fantastical Kingdoms, was a 2018 O’Neill semifinalist as well as a semifinalist for the 2018 Forward Flux Three New American Plays competition. As Tiny House, the play will be produced as part of the Playhouse’s 2021 mainstage season, under the direction of Tony Award nominee and Playhouse artistic director Mark Lamos. Michael lives in Delaware with his Boston Terrier, Finn, and they can be spotted hiking, exploring and purposely getting lost on any one of a number of state park trails daily.
Andrew Boyce with Jacob Santos
Thu, July 23 at 4PM
Andrew is a multi disciplinary designer working on a variety on projects ranging from theater, opera, and live events, to film and commercial spaces. He holds a degree in Architecture from Middlebury College and an M.F.A. from Yale School of Drama, where he also taught in the Design Department. In addition to Andrew's work at the Playhouse as the scenic designer on Loot, Twelfth Night, and The Understudy, he has designed the sets and/or costumes for world premiere productions and collaborated with directors at Lincoln Center Theater, Roundabout Theater Company, Atlantic Theater Company, Primary Stages, Rattlestick Theater, The Play Company, Playwrights Realm, Cherry Lane, Actors Theatre of Louisville, The Alliance, American Players, American Conservatory Theater, Baltimore Centerstage, Berkeley Repertory Theater, Curtis Opera Theatre, Des Moines Metro Opera, The Geffen, George Street Playhouse, The Goodman, Huntington, Kirk Douglas, Magic Theater, Mark Taper Forum, Milwaukee Rep, The Old Globe, Opera Theater of St. Louis, Philadelphia Theater Company, Portland Center Stage, Syracuse Stage, The Wilma, Yale Rep, among others.
Upclose with Jacob Santos
Thu, July 23 at 4PM
For this special Coffee Break, the audience was in direct conversation with Jacob. Watch it again on our YouTube channel.
Sydney Wyatt and Jacob Santos
Thu, July 16 at 4PM
Watch Sydney and Jacob again on YouTube. Sydney, the 2020 Marketing Intern at Westport Country Playhouse, is a rising senior at High Point University, pursuing a double major in Technical Theatre and Philosophy. She serves as their chapter president of Alpha Psi Omega, the national theatre honors society, which operates as a production company for student pieces. She is co-founder of Citrustage Theatre Collaborative, a small company dedicated to amplifying “fresh” works. To her, theater is a useful tool for social justice, and a powerful way to learn how to live together and celebrate one another’s stories. Follow her on Instagram @the.sydney.shea!
Sara Bues with Jacob Santos
Thu, July 9 at 4PM
Watch Sara and Jacob again on YouTube. Sara will be seen on stage at the Playhouse in our 2021 season in Tiny House. She grew up on Long Island, went to Syracuse University, spent some time in Chicago and now resides in NYC (although currently she is up in the mountains, somewhere west). Before the pandemic she guest starred on "FBI" and had roles on Showtime's "City on a Hill" as well as "Law and Order: SVU." Now she is making quarantine movies and spending time in her metalsmithing studio where she makes jewelry.
Esteban Suero with Jacob Santos
Thu, July 2 at 4 PM
Watch Esteban and Jacob again on YouTube. Originally from Miami, FL, Esteban is an actor, singer, singer-songwriter, and photographer based in New York City. Recent credits include Westport Country Playhouse's production of Man of La Mancha (Barber/Ensemble), lead vocalist in the national tour of Rockin' Road to Dublin (directed by Broadway's Jeff Whiting), and Will Bloom in Big Fish. After completing his Master’s Degree in Opera Performance in Oklahoma City, he made the move to New York in 2016 with his now 11 year-old German Shepherd. When not performing or actively auditioning, Esteban is an avid road-tripper, fitness enthusiast, and food lover ("foodie" is an understatement). @estesuero / @suerophotography
Jermaine Rowe with Jacob Santos
Thu, June 25 at 4PM
Watch Jermaine & Jacob again on YouTube. Jermaine is a multi-faceted theater artist.Westport Country Playhouse: Mlima's Tale, Man of La Mancha. Broadway/West End: The Lion King, Fela! Regional: Macbeth, Titus Andronicus, Noon Day Sun, Batboy. Film: Bwoy, Freedom, and was an original cast member in National Theatre Live Fela! Opera: Il Barber de Seville, The Tales of Hoffman. Former dancer with Dance Theatre of Harlem and National Dance Theatre Company of Jamaica. He was a 2019 Semi-Finalist for the O'Neill's National Music Theatre Conference with his original work Storyteller/The Children from the Blue Mountain. Awards: 2019-20 Award for Excellence for his performance in Mlima's Tale by the Connecticut Critics Circle. He holds an MFA in Theatre from Sarah Lawrence College, and is a CUNY Adjunct Professor in Acting.
Carlos L. Encinias with Jacob Santos
Thu, June 18 at 3:30PM (Special time!)
Watch Carlos & Jacob again on YouTube. Originally from Albuquerque, New Mexico. Studied theater at BYU in Utah, proud New Yorker since 2000. Westport Country Playhouse: Man of La Mancha (Padre). Broadway: Les Misérables (Fueilly), Mamma Mia! (us Eddie/Father A), Good Vibrations (us Jan/Class President) Scandalous (Ramon) starring Carolee Carmello. Off-Broadway: Altar Boyz (Juan/Abe/Mark). Regional: Olney Theatre Center, Miss You Like Hell (Manuel); Papermill Playhouse, A Christmas Story (u/s Santa); Phoenix Theatre, Evita (Che); Sundance, Cinderella (Prince). Carlos is also a dance and theatre instructor at Professional Performing Arts High School and directs professionally from time to time. Represented with BLOC NYC. Carlos has been with his husband, Joe, for 15 years and plays his most acclaimed role as Papa to his two sons, Luca and Marco!
Sandra Marante with Jacob Santos
Thu, June 11 at 4PM
Watch Sandra & Jacob again on YouTube. Born and raised in sunny Miami, Florida, Sandra Marante is a musical theater actress and classically trained operatic soprano. She was last seen at Westport Country Playhouse as Daniela in In the Heights, as well as performing at WCP’s holiday benefit concert. Recent: In the Heights (Broadway at Music Circus), Stonewall (New York City Opera at Lincoln Center),Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (Dicapo Theatre), In the Heights (Playhouse on Park), Hatuey(American premiere, Peak Performances), Man of La Mancha (Princeton Festival), Madama Butterfly and My Fair Lady (Charlottesville Opera). Sandra recently filmed her first co-starring TV role on “Bull” (CBS). Other TV: “Quiero Ser Estrella” (Univision). Ms. Marante’s personal life story — to succeed musically despite what obstacles she has endured — has been recognized and published by Northwestern Medicine as well as in press nationwide press outlets, among them Chicago Tribune, Miami Sun Sentinel, Los Angeles Times, Opera Pulse, and Classical Singer Magazine. Ms. Marante was the spokes-patient for a national commercial advertisement for Northwestern Memorial Hospital. She is a proud graduate of New World School of the Arts (BMus), Roosevelt University (MM), and UConn (PD).
Rodolfo Soto with Jacob Santos
Thu, May 28 at 4PM
Watch Rodolfo & Jacob again on YouTube. Rodolfo made his Playhouse debut as Usnavi in In the Heights in 2019. You may also have caught him in TWUSA’s spring 2018 tour of The Lightning Thief (Grover) and at The Broadway Bound Theatre Festival in Poor Boy’s Chorus (Poor Boy #1). He graduated with a BFA in Acting and a BA in Writing for the Stage from Marymount Manhattan College. His favorite quote is, “Every day has the opportunity to be the best day of your life.”
Paola Hernandez with Jacob Santos
Thu, May 21 at 4PM
Watch Paola & Jacob again on YouTube. Paola made her Playhouse debut as Antonia in Man of La Mancha in 2018, Born and raised in Puerto Rico, she is a proud Circle in the Square Theater School Alumna. Recent: Rent National Tour (Mimi Marquez), Rent National Tour (Swing, U/S Mimi, Maureen), Twelfth Night (Viola), Spring Awakening (Martha), Legally Blonde (Vivienne), Hairspray (Dynamite), Godspell, Hair. Gracias to my familia. www.paola-hernandez.com, @phtanon
To our loyal audiences, supporters, and art makers: For nearly 90 years, the Playhouse has been dedicated to bringing theater to the stage and being a central provider to our community. Live theater is special, and we all experience it together — hearing the same words, feeling the same current when actors eyes connect, sitting in the same velvet seats. And, with your help, we look forward to another 90.
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All titles, dates, times, and artists are subject to change.