Sara Davis | Sean Fortunato | Blake Hammond | George Keating | Iris Lieberman | Susie McMonagle
Carrie McNulty | Marci Medwed | Jason Sperling | Stephen Wallem | Gene Weygandt
ARTISTIC STAFF


Blake Hammond (Alexander Woollcott)

BLAKE HAMMOND returns to Chicago after a seven year absence and has the good fortune to once again be playing Alexander Woollcott, a role he created in the World Premiere production at Florida Stage winning the 2001 Carbonell Award for Best Actor in a Musical. Other credits include- Broadway: The Music Man (Jacey Squires in the barbershop quartet), Kiss Me Kate (Phillip), and On the Town (Uperman, Emcee). Off Broadway: Carnival and Do Re Mi (City Center), The Emperor (Promenade), On the Town (NYSF), and When Pigs Fly (also in Los Angeles winning the LA Drama Critics Award). National Tours: The Lion King (Pumba), Jesus Christ Superstar (Annas), and JosephDreamcoat (Napthali). NY workshop: Bells Are Ringing (Kennedy Center), Disney's Hunchback (in pre-production for a new live action film version), and Sondheim's The Frogs (Lincoln Center). Film and television include: MAFIA!, Rookie of the Year, Desperation Blvd, The Rosie O'Donnell Show and the CD Rom Star Trek: Klingon Academy. Blake has appreared in over 30 productions in the Chicago area and is making his Northlight Theatre debut.



Susie McMonagle (Jane Grant)

SUSIE McMONAGLE  Broadway: Les Miserables (Fantine). National Tours:The Secret Garden (Martha / Ensemble); Les Miserables (Fantine); The Sound of Music and Some Enchanted Evening. Regional credits include: Papermill Playhouse, Denver Center Theatre, Mill Mountain Theatre and New American Theatre in Sunday in the Park with George (Dot / Marie), Annie Get Your Gun (Annie), Me and My Girl Sally, Denver Drama Critic's Circle), Misalliance (Hypatia). Other Chicago credits include: Flora Crewe in Indian Ink and Shelby in The Spitfire Grill, both at Appletree Theatre and Trina in Falsettoland at Wisdom Bridge Theatre. Susie is a 5 time Joseph Jefferson nominee for her performance in Miss Saigon (Ellen), Evita (Eva Peron), and Chess (Florence) at Marriott Theatre; Anything Goes (Reno Sweeney) at Drury Lane Oakbrook; and Side Show (Daisy) at Northlight Theatre. B.F.A. Stephens College.


Sean Fortunato (Harold Ross)

SEAN FORTUNATO was last seen as Dvornichek in Rough Crossing at Writers' Theatre where he also appeared as Tegeus in A Phoenix Too Frequent (After Dark Award-Performance), Carlos in Spite For Spite (After Dark Award-Production), Le Duc in Incident at Vichy (After Dark Award-Ensemble) and Bolingbroke in Richard II. Other credits include: Sylvestre in Scapin (Court Theatre/Intiman Theatre, WA); Matthew in Private Eyes (Old Globe Theatre, CA); Young Scrooge in A Christmas Carol, Le Beau in As You Like It (Goodman Theatre); Exeter in Henry V the Duke in Comedy of Errors (Chicago Shakespeare); Sir Evelyn in Anything Goes, Paul in Big (Drury Lane-Oakbrook); Joe Farkas in The Last Night of Ballyhoo, O'Hara in Rain (Peninsula Players, Door County, WI); Mercutio in Romeo & Juliet, Tranio in Taming of the Shrew (First Folio Shakespeare); Siro in The Mandrake (greasy joan & co.); the Duke in Measure for Measure (Milwaukee Shakespeare); Brutus in Julius Caesar (Montana Shakespeare).

 


Gene Weygandt (Frank Adams/Raoul Fleischmann)

GENE WEYGANDT is a three-time Joseph Jefferson Best Actor recipient. On Broadway he created the role of Paul in the multi-zillion dollar production of "Big: The Musical". Television credits include Murphy Brown, Home Improvement, Cybill, Drew Carey, Ellen, Coach, and Thunder Alley. Here in Chicago, he's appeared at Steppenwolf in Inspecting Carol, and at the Royal George in Lend Me a Tenor as well as Little Shop of Horrors. At the Marriott Lincolnshire he's starred in A Day in Hollywood/A Night in The Ukraine, Arthur: The Musical, Me And My Girl, and Phantom of The Country Palace, written by Cheri Coons and Micheal Duff, book by Kathy Santen and Sean Grennan. Mr. Weygandt is a voice actor you've heard hundreds of times on radio and television, an avid BMW motorcyclist and proud dad. Love to TC.

 


Iris Lieberman (Edna Ferber)

IRIS LIEBERMAN returns to Northlight directly from starring in "Dames at Sea" at Drury Lane Oakbrook. She last appeared here as the Dresser in "Enter the Guardsman". Since then she did "My Fair Lady", "Big, The Musical", Anything Goes", and was stand-by for both the mother and daughter roles in "On Golden Pond" all at Drury Lane Oakbrook. Earlier this year she played Tessie Tura in "Gypsy" at Theatre at the Center and took over the role of Mama Rose in that production. She has performed regularly at Marriott's Linconshire Theatre in "Mame" "Big River", "Houdini", "Phantom", "Ms. Cinderella", and "Baby" to name a few. Favorite roles she has played are Kate in "Sylvia", at Madison Rep, Sally in "Tally's Folly", Ruth in "Blithe Spirit", Lizzie in "110 In the Shade", Ella in "Bells are Ringing", and the title role in "Evita". Winner of a Joseph Jefferson Award for her performance in "Robert and Elizabeth", she is also busy in commercials and print, currently seen in ads for Crest and bill boards for Illinois Lotto. Her film and TV credits include "Hoodlum", "The Relic", "Groundhog Day", "Missing Persons", and "Early Edition". Thanks to B.J., Cheri, Michael, Joe and Marla.


Sara Davis (Dorothy Parker)

SARA DAVIS is delighted to make her Northlight debut. Chicago credits include Lily in The Secret Garden, for which she won the Joseph Jefferson Award (Apple Tree Theatre), Babes in Arms, One Touch of Venus, Strike Up the Band, and Promises, Promises, (Ovations! series at the Auditorium Theatre), Peggy Sue Got Married , Do Black Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?, and The Taffetas (Marriott Theatre), Brigadoon, Annie Get Your Gun, The Most Happy Fella, It's a Wonderful Life, Phantom, and Fiddler on the Roof (Drury Lane Oakbrook), Female Problems: An Unhelpful Guide (Jeff nomination) and Passion (Pegasus Players), Phantom (Candlelight Dinner Playhouse),The Sound of Music (Theatre at the Center), A Holiday Spin (Bailiwick Repertory), and Yadda Yadda Yadda: The Lyrics of Cheri Coons (Royal George). Regional appearances include Chrissy in Phantom of the Country Opera , Annie Warbucks , The Wizard of Oz , Sweet Charity , The Nerd , and the national tour of Schoolhouse Rock Live!.

 


George Keating (Robert Benchley)

GEORGE KEATING most happily returns to Northlight where he appeared as many outrageous characters in EVERYTHING'S DUCKY. He comes directly from playing Skimbleshanks in CATS at The Marriott Theatre where his many credits include Linville in DAMN YANKEES and The Butler in JOSEPH. His association with Cheri Coons and Michael Duff has been long and fruitful, most notably the original reading and demo of AT WIT'S END and various incarnations of YADDA YADDA YADDA. He was honored to appear as the emcee of Broadway in Chicago/ClearCom's THE SING-A-LONG WIZARD OF OZ at the Oriental Theatre. He is a co-founder of Theatrebam Chicago and co-creator of their original hit SCHOOLHOUSE ROCK LIVE! (which he has performed over 2,000 times throughout the country and off-Broadway at The Atlantic Theatre). Other notable acting credits include The Baron in GRAND HOTEL and John Truitt in MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS at Theatre at the Center; George Bailey in A WONDERFUL LIFE, Frankie in FOREVER PLAID and the title role in BARNUM at The Wagon Wheel Theatre. George is dedicated to Theatre for Young Audiences and his teaching career. He will return to Northwestern this summer to teach Voice & Movement at the National High School Institute. He is grateful to the fabulous Northlight staff, Cheri and Michael and his sweet Kitten.


Carrie McNulty (Tallulah Bankhead)

CARRIE McNULTY is honored to be making her Northlight debut in "At Wits End". Audiences may remember Carrie from her recent run in "I love You, You're Perfect, Now Change" at They Royal George, with many performances as Woman #1. Other recent credits include: The Sea witch in "The Little Mermaid" (Marriott Lincolnshire TYA), Dolly Levi in "Hello Dolly" (Wagon Wheel), Velma Kelly in "Chicago" (Pheasant Run), Ms. Pascal in "The House of Yes" (Circle Theatre), Tara/Muse in "Muscle" (Pegasus Players), and Tessie Tura in "Gypsy" (Bailiwick Repertory). She had the pleasure of working with Ms. Coons and Mr. Duff as Sally Barker in their hilarious musical "Phantom of the Country Opera". Much love and thanks to her supportive mom and dad, and this wonderful cast and crew.

 


Marci Medwed (Helen Hayes)

MARCI MEDWED is thrilled to be making her debut at the Northlight Theatre with At Wit's End. Other Chicago credits include: Luisa in The Fantasticks (Pegasus Players); Gypsy and State Fair (Theater at the Center); Children of Eden (Porchlight Theatre); Bye Bye Birdie (Marriott Lincolnshire); The Wizard of Oz (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre); The Princess of President Street and Stars in Your Eyes (Illinois Theatre Center); BS (Free Associates). She also recorded the original cast album of Madame X, for which she sang the role of Marie, and is a graduate of Northwestern University. Throughout May, Marci can be seen as the Princess in Aladdin on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday mornings at Drury Lane Oakbrook. Marci would like to thank Cheri, Michael, Joe and the entire Northlight staff for this opportunity. She would also like to thank her family and fiancé Blaine for their support. Marci dedicates her performance to the loving memory of her Dad.

 


Jason Sperling (George S. Kaufman)

JASON SPERLING makes his Northlight Theatre debut in At Wit's End. Most recently, Jason worked with The Noble Fool in the world premiere of Vikings! A Musical in Two Axe understudying three parts, and appeared in Sunday in the Park with George with both Pegasus Players (Boatman) and Chicago Shakespeare Theater (Boatman Understudy). Other Chicago credits include: You Never Know, Kismet, One Touch of Venus and Most Happy Fella (Light Opera Works), Shlemiel the First (Pegasus Players), The Roaring Girl (Shakespeare's Motley Crew), the original cast of Musical! the Musical, and the title role in Man of La Mancha (Phoenix Ascending). Regional credits include: Secrets Every Smart Traveler Should Know (Red Barn Theatre, Wisconsin), Forever Plaid (Old Creamery, Iowa), and Biloxi Blues (Enchanted Hills Playhouse, Indiana). Jason is also an original company member of Barrel of Monkeys, a children's writing and theatre program.

 


Stephen Wallem (Marc Connelly)

STEPHEN WALLEM makes his Northlight debut with At Wit's End. He was last seen as Bartell D'Arcy in Court Theatre's production of James Joyce's The Dead; a role he will reprise at Court this winter. Other credits include Mr. Erlanson in A Little Night Music (Ravinia Music Festival), Into the Woods (National Tour), Sunday in the Park with George and The Mystery of Irma Vep (New American Theatre), The Rocky Horror Show (Organic), and the one-man show Off the Wallem, which garnered him the 1993 After Dark Award for Outstanding Cabaret Artist. For eight years he appeared as both Jinx and Sparky in various companies of Forever Plaid including Chicago, Las Vegas, Denver, Peninsula Players, Theatre at the Center, and the first national tour. Along with collaborator Danny Musha, Stephen is the author of the musical Frozen River, which recently had a staged reading at Lamb's Theater in Manhattan.

 




ARTISTIC STAFF



JOE LEONARDO (Director) is delighted to return to Northlight where he directed the Chicago premiere of Side Show in May, 2000. Other directing credits include national tours of The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Me and My Girl, Ziegfeld: A Night at the Follies, City of Angels, and Bully (with John Davidson). He also co-created and directed the national tour of the theater/cirucus spectacular Cirque Ingenieux (also televised on PBS Television in August, 1998). Other directing credits include It's Better with a Band in New York, London and Philadelphia and over a dozen productions in Chicago, including the Joseph Jefferson Award Nominees for Best Musical: Me and My Girl, Grand Hotel, Sweeney Todd (Joseph Jefferson Award Winner/1993) and Miss Saigon (co-directed with Dyanne Early). His first produciton of the new musical At Wit's End premiered at Florida Stage in Palm Beach and received 11 Carbonell Award nominations (2001). He most recently directed a concert version of City of Angels in Palm Desert starring Hal Linden and Burke Moses. As Artistic Director of NETworks, he has overseen the national tours of Kiss of the Spider Woman, The Sound of Music (America and Asia), Stage Fair, Damn Yankees, Victor/Victoria, Big, Show Boat, Annie, Jekyll and Hyde, Bully, The Civil War, Cirque Ingenieux, Cinderella, and Ragtime. Mr. Leonardo is also the Laura Carnell Professor of Theater and Director of Theater at Temple University in Philadelphia where he has chosen and produced twenty-four seasons of theater and has directed over thirty musicals and plays by such authors as Shakespeare, Moliere, Chekhov, Genet, Stoppard, Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides.



CHUCK LARKIN (Musical Director/Pianist-Conductor) At Wit's End marks Chuck Larkin's first appearance with Northlight Theatre. He has served as musical director with numerous local and national vocalists such as Jason Graae and Lee Lessack in cabaret venues including Davenports, Royal George Cabaret, Toulouse on the Park, and in cabaret series at Metropolis Performing Arts Center and The Barns of Wolf Trap. Local theater credits include musicals at Bailiwick Theatre, and the long-running Royal George production of Forever Plaid. As a composer/lyricist, Chuck's work appeared most recently in the Lifeline Theatre adaptation of Hen Lake. A collection of his songs was showcased in the Davenports production of Keep Me In Love: The Words and Music of Chuck Larkin, honored as Chicago s After Dark #1 Cabaret Show of 2000. Chuck is also the recipient of the After Dark Cabaret Artist of the Year Award. He is an active member of Chicago Musical Theatre Works, an organization focused on fostering production of new musicals by Chicago writers.



MARLA LAMPERT (Choreographer) is delighted to return to Northlight where she has choreographed COWGIRLS, THE GLASS HOUSE AND BUBBE MEISES. She also choreographed the world premiere of At Wit's End at Florida Stage, for which she received a Carbonell nomination. Marla's recent productions include THE BUBBLY BLACK GIRL SHEDS HER CHAMELEON SKIN at Apple Tree (where she serves as an artistic associate) and DAMES AT SEA at Drury Lane Oakbrook. Ms. Lampert has staged the Fezziwig Dances for the last four years for the Goodman Theatre's A CHRISTMAS CAROL and choreographed last summer's Ravinia production of A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC starring Patti LuPone and George Hearn. Her work has also been seen at the Apollo, Chicago Opera Theater, Light Opera Works, Marriott's Lincolnshire Theatre, Peninsula Players, Piper's Alley and Victory Gardens. Ms. Lampert has choreographed numerous industrial shows, as well as the Chicago Bar Association's CHRISTMAS SPIRITS. She has recieved an After Dark Award for her choreogaphy of HOW TO SUCCEED...and a Joseph Jefferson Award for KISS OF THE SPIDER WOMAN.



DEYA FRIEDMAN, (Stage Manager) Previous Northlight Theatre credits include 2 Pianos 4 Hands, Driving Miss Daisy and All In The Timing. Other Chicago Credits include: the Auditorium Theater Council's Ovations! Series; The Bomb-itty of Errors, Mom's the Word, The Gin Game (with Julie Harris and Charles Durning), and Forever Plaid at the Royal George Theater; Wings, Cloud Tectonics, and Waiting for Godot at the Goodman Theatre; and The Libertine, Everyman, As I Lay Dying and A Clockwork Orange at Steppenwolf Theatre. A founding member of Shakespeare Repertory (now Chicago Shakespeare Theater), Deya served as stage manager for the Rep's original productions of Cymbeline, King John, and Much Ado About Nothing. Deya teaches Stage Management at Loyola University and at DePaul University.



KERRY EPSTEIN (Assistant Stage Manager) is very pleased to return to Northlight after stage managing its production of The Guys at the Goodman Theatre. Also at Northlight she was part of the stage management team for Sky Girls; Rounding Third; 2 Pianos, 4 Hands; Talley's Folly; Hearts; Everything's Ducky; and Over the Tavern. Additional stage management credits include a staged reading of A Raisin in the Sun (Goodman Theatre), Be Aggressive, The Trestle at Pope Lick Creek, Faulkner's Bicycle, The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 _ (Rivendell Theatre Ensemble), Childe Byron, The Eccentricities of a Nightingale, Suddenly Last Summer, and Confessional (Eclipse Theatre Company).



RAY NARDELLI (Sound Design) Past Northlight Credits include Last 5 Years and Everything's Ducky. Ray has composed music and designed sound at The Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, AppleTree Theatre, Lookingglass Theatre, Victory Gardens Theatre, The Gift Theatre, Northwestern Theatre, Depaul Theatre, Notre Dame Summer Shakespeare, Oak Park Festival Theatre, Dolphinback Theatre, American Girl Theatre, Skylight Opera, and Wright State University Theatre. Assistant Sound Design credits at the Goodman, Steppenwolf Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Club and at the Next Theatre. Ray has recorded, mixed and produced CD's for the musicals The Sound Of One and La Luna Muda. Film credits include Stray Dogs, Pretty Ladies, Crush and Hole In The Wall. Ray teaches Sound Design at DePaul University and Northwestern University. Other work includes sound and music used on NPR, PBS, NBC's The Today Show and Jeff Gorden Racing, A CD-Rom game.