May Violets Spring: A new story for a new Ophelia

I am so very excited about this project, an adaptation of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, told through Ophelia’s eyes. I have the challenge and honor to take on the role of Ophelia and it is such a thrill to not only play a dream role, but one that honors the feminine perspective (don’t get me wrong, Hamlet is the greatest play ever written, but it doesn’t quite pass the Bechdel Test).

Dare Lab’s inaugural production, MAY VIOLETS SPRING is a new play adapted primarily from Shakespeare’s Hamlet but featuring many of the Bard of Avon’s other plays and sonnets, along with the introduction of original verse by James Parenti.

This production focuses on Ophelia’s journey as a protagonist through the canon events of Hamlet. It’s a love letter to classical heroines slighted by the narratives of our past and too often also in productions of the present.

The play will run this upcoming April 16th through April 27th, 2014 at The Bridge Theatre in Shetler Studios: 244 W.54th St, 12th Floor

http://mayvioletsspring.brownpapertickets.com/

Cupid and Psyche at Barrow Group Theatre!

“Sisco has a beautiful stage figure and knows, at the same time, how to hold a dramatic weight.”
– Stagebuddy.com

It’s not too often you are called upon to play a god.  It has been an awesome thrill and honor to be a part of this project.  Cupid and Psyche is actually the third part in a trilogy of new verse plays, telling the story of the war between Love and Death.  Guess which side I lead the charge for….

Playing the Queen of Hell and Goddess of Death is a sort of intimidating task. But putting on this character feels like putting on a very familiar, very heavy robe.  Persephone was once a goddess of Light, Life, and Growing Things, and by this third installment, she is so broken and yet in some ways, stronger than ever.
I just hope I am bringing to the show all it deserves.
And I am crossing my fingers that in the near future we can do all three parts in rep.  How cool would that be?

Mill Fire, by Sally Nemeth at TheatreLab

I had the somewhat sudden, unexpected privilege of taking on the task to direct this mightily complex play. To be honest, it was a daunting project to take on at the last minute. I was very lucky to have an incredible cast and brilliant crew helping to weave Nemeth’s story with grace and guts.

The storytelling experience is one of healing – on both sides of the deal – whether we’re just looking for an amusing distraction or a cathartic gut-wrenching excavation of the soul. So we tell this story – of a small steel town in 1978 Alabama, and a woman looking back on the events of the past year since the night a mill fire took her husband’s life – because in some way, we share these wounds. Our country’s history of industry exploiting small town families and workers who break their backs for a lousy pension – a marriage crumbling, or a marriage flourishing only to be cut short by tragedy – a silent code for coping that has shackled a community… Something there resonates with each of us, and perhaps nothing more so than the pain and fear of death. In Marlene, we see a young widow struggling to accept the hole burned into her life where her husband used to be. I am most interested in exploring this journey toward healing, both for Marlene and her community. Sometimes having the opportunity to tell your story, to be heard, to be touched, is the only way to heal a haunted heart.

La Mama, Here we come!

Ivy Theatre is producing two shows in under three months, people.  And next up, we’re hitting the New York International Fringe Festival with a seriously beautiful play called Like Poetry by Kristian O’Hare.  It’s the fascinating and touching story of a man seeking help from his spirit guide, Walt Whitman, as he comes to terms with his homosexuality

We couldn’t be more excited to be working in such an awesome venue, and while I don’t get to grace the stage in this one, I’m extremely proud of this one.  Especially because we’ve chosen to donate a portion of our proceeds to The Trevor Project.

IVY THEATRE COMPANY brings you Black Ice at Midtown International Theatre Festival

So…. I started a theatre company with the remarkable Audrey Alford and Katie Braden.  Check out our website!!  Ivy Theatre Company is going to be as tenacious and wild and gorgeous as the flora it’s named for.  We have made the wild and crazy decision to produce an entire season of THREE shows over the next six months!!

First up- BLACK ICE. Audrey will direct and Katie and I will star along with the magnificent Mara Lileas, Lindsey Zelli & Lauren Dortch-Crozier.  It’s happening at the Workshop Theatre Company’s Jewelbox Theatre as part of the Midtown International Theatre Festeival.
Audrey and I are so pleased to be working with playwright, Lezlie Revelle again.  This time she’s written a story about a tight-knit circle of friends and the unravelling of my character as secrets begin to unfold. It is a huge challenge to play a woman reacting so violently to the realization that her best friend is gay, but ultimately it is a play about their deep love for one another.

Berkely College Commercial

I booked a commercial, y’all.

I get to be a part of the new ad campaign for Berkeley College.  It was an awesome experience, and I can’t wait to see the billboards, web video, and t.v. spot that will come out of it.

Medusa!

It’s not every day you get asked by some brilliant playwright/director to workshop a piece of theirs in which you have the opportunity to play a universally known villain.  It’s even better when this version of the story allows you to play all her sadness and sexiness along with her relatively psychotic ferocity.

I’m talking about Medusa, folks. I got to play Medusa in Emily Snyder’s Turn to Flesh, a fascinating exploration of heroes and monsters and the moments leading up to Perseus taking her head.  And it’s in iambic pentameter. How cool is that?


(Don’t ask how long it took to get my hair to do that)

It was performed as part of The Ume Group’s quarterly “Workshop” where artists are given the opportunity to present their work at any point in its creative process in order to receive feedback from other artists.  It was worlds of fun to watch everyone’s work and play such a wild part with my buddy, James Parenti.  Hopefully this is not the last you’ll see of my Medusa.  Stay tuned and fingers crossed, you’ll be seeing Turn to Flesh in a full-length production.!

Theatre can save lives

I don’t usually flatter myself in imagining that every show I direct/perform in will change the lives of the audience, but once a year for the past four years, I have been a part of the University tour of 36:24:36 – a show for which I believe that statement to be true.

36:24:36 is a dark comedy based on the true stories of its writers (several of whom still join the cast to tell their tales year after year).  These stories deal with their struggle with eating disorders – the mental illness with a higher mortality rate than any other. And whether I’m onstage or just running the show, it’s undeniable how powerful the piece is.  And every once in a while someone who has felt so alone with this disease sees the show, thanks us from bottom of his or her heart, and leaves the theatre feeling less alone, and maybe a little hopeful.

So yeah. That’s what I did in March..