Bailey Boudreau (Mark) is stoked to be a part of The Shadow Box cast and thrilled to be working with Open Book. He is the musical and competitive theatre director at West Bloomfield High School and has worked as an actor. costume designer, stage manager, director and producer in the Metro Detroit Area for the past fifteen years. Many thanks to Topher and Krista for the opportunity and a huge shout out to the WBHS kids, Jen, Jay, Ryan and Luna for the ultimate support and constant inspiration.
Jan Cartwright (Interviewer) always enjoys performing at Open Book Theatre Company and was last seen here in Sylvia as Kate. She’s looking forward to being a part of Open Book’s exciting second season! Jan has worked locally at the Ringwald, The Dio, Performance Network, Matrix and JET, and on stages in Denver and Chicago. A few favorite roles include Mattie Fae in August: Osage County, Grandma Kurnitz in Lost in Yonkers, Blanche DuBois in Streetcar Named Desire and Truvy in Steel Magnolias. Jan is also a film and television actor and a professional photographer. She owns and operates Cartwright Photography & Communications in Novi.
Jaclynn Cherry (Agnes) is excited to be making her Open Book debut! She is a resident cast member of ComedySportz Detroit and has also performed with Planet Ant, Go Comedy! Improv Theater, Water Works, The Dio, and Slipstream Theatre Initiative. Many thanks to Topher, Krista, and everyone involved with the show for this wonderful experience!
Wendy Katz Hiller (Felicity) is delighted to be returning to Open Book Theatre after performing in last year’s Independence. Over the summer she enjoyed portraying Mrs. Malaprop in The Rivals with The Michigan Shakespeare Festival. She has also appeared with The Matrix Theatre, The Performance Network, Planet Ant, Michigan Classical Repertory Theatre and The Encore Theatre in Dexter where, later this fall, Wendy is looking forward to playing the Wicked Witch of the West in The Wizard of Oz. Wendy would like to thank her husband, Steve, and daughters, Lydia and Maddy, for their love and support.
Ethan Kankula (Steve) Ethan Kankula is feeling groovy to be apart of the ecstatic cast and crew of The Shadow Box. This far out journey began when he first picked up this dramatic story two years ago and knew he had to be involved with this show in some way. What were the chances that any theater would put this classic show on before he’d “age out.” Thankfully, The Open Book Theater Company put this show together! Ethan can also be found at the Matrix Theatre Company, Trenton school of Dance, and at EthanKankula.weebly.com. Big love to the wonderful family and friends that supported him every step of the way.
Dennis Kleinsmith (Brian) is very excited to be returning to the Open Book stage after appearing here as Mark Rothko in Red last season and appearing as Jacques (Jay-queeze) in Water Works Shakespeare’s production of As You Like It this past summer. After graduating from Wayne State University, Dennis went on to work at various Detroit-area theatres such as Meadowbrook, Plowshares, and the Jewish Ensemble Theatre before moving west. Between Seattle and Los Angeles he accrued dozens of professional stage and film credits (all of which were memorable and important to him so none are listed here so none get left out) and in the years he’s been back home he’s added Michigan Shakespeare Festival, Shakespeare in Detroit, the Abreact and memorably, the role of Roy Cohn in the Ringwald Theatre’s productions of Angels in America. He would like to dedicate this performance to Frank & Annachie.
Lisa Maxine Melinn (Beverly) is thrilled to making her debut with Open Book Theatre Company! She has performed locally at venues such at The Ringwald, Magenta Giraffe, Planet Ant, Second City/Detroit, and The Zeitgeist. Favorite roles include Helen in Night of the Living Dead: The Musical, Tina in Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding, and many irate women who scream. Thanks go out to Topher, Krista, and of course the sort-of Jew.
Sean Paraventi (Joe) is an actor, playwright and improviser, who is thrilled to be appearing in his second Open Book show after being seen in last season’s Sylvia. He would like to thank Topher and Krista and everyone involved in this wonderful production, which he is honored to be part of. He would also like to send gratitude out to his family and friends for all of their support and he would like to thank whoever is reading this program for supporting local theatre. Lastly, he would like to remind everyone (including himself) that life is short: so just breathe, don’t play it too safe, and enjoy the journey!
Krista Schafer Ewbank (Maggie) is the founding Artistic Director of Open Book, and was seen on stage last season in Sylvia, Independence and Kimberly Akimbo and directed Wiley and the Hairy Man in the summer. A native Michigander, Krista holds a degree in theatre from Northwestern University. Some other favorite roles she’s played on stages large and small across the country include Veronica in God of Carnage, Catherine in Proof, Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Dogberry in Much Ado About Nothing, Fiona in Flanagan’s Wake, The Angel in Angels in America, Agnes in Dancing at Lughnasa, and Mrs. Pinkerton in Pinkalicious! The Musical. Krista can be seen as The Statue of Liberty on the cover of Cootie Shots (published by TCG), in which she was an original cast member, and has appeared in national and regional radio and television commercials. She is thrilled to have an artistic home.
Topher Payne (Director) is a Michigan based actor and director. He is the Associate Director of Open Book and directed all the shows in the Inaugural Season. Originally hailing from Lubbock, Texas, Topher has a BFA in Acting Performance from Texas Tech University and an MFA in Acting from Wayne State University. Additionally, he has worked on stage with Michigan Shakespeare Festival, Tulsa’s American Theatre Company, Lubbock Moonlight Musicals, The Angel Fire Mountain Theatre Company, and The Berkshire Fringe Festival. He has also taught high school theatre and directed many productions on the high school level and in various theatres in Texas, Oklahoma, and Michigan. During the day he performs in the educational shows offered at the Michigan Science Center. He wants to thank his boyfriend Jeff for all of his love and support.
Harley Miah (Lighting Designer) is a professional in the entertainment technology industry. He is a freelance lighting programmer for a large number of nightclubs, concerts and festivals in the Detroit area, and across the country. He works with the RHS Theatre program and is a proud member of, and lighting designer for, AKT Theatre Project in Wyandotte, MI. Harley designed the lights for all the shows in Open Book’s Inaugural Season, and earned a Wilde Award for Best Design – Lights for his work on Red. In the summer he loves to ride his bike and Slow Roll on Monday nights.