JEAN SHEPHERD (Originating Author) One of the most nostalgic, humorous storytellers of his day, Shepherd wrote for several magazines and his articles were published in a series of books including The America of George Ade, In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash, A Fistful of Fig Newtons and The Ferrari in the Bedroom. Shepherd’ s radio broadcasting career began in Cincinnati in 1948. He eventually moved to WOR Radio in New York. He performed entirely without scripts. From 1971 to 1994, Shepherd became a screenwriter, writing and producing numerous television and cinema works. In 2005, Shepherd was posthumously inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame and the Broadcast Cable Hall of Fame.
BENJAMIN “BOB” CLARK (Motion Picture Director/Co-Screenwriter) was an actor, director, screenwriter and producer. Mr. Clark directed a diverse collection of both blockbuster and cult hits including Black Christmas, Murder by Degree, Tribute and Porky’s. Working from Jean Shepherd’s book, In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash, Mr. Clark directed, and co-wrote with Shepherd and Leigh Brown, the motion picture A Christmas Story. Films that followed included Rhinestone, Turk 182!, From the Hip, Loose Cannons, and Baby Geniuses.
JOSEPH ROBINETTE (Book) is a 2013 Tony Award nominee and Drama Desk Award nominee and the award-winning author of fifty-five published plays and musicals. His works have been produced in all fifty states and in seventeen foreign countries. Twelve of his plays have been translated into foreign languages. His plays have been produced by Lincoln Center, Pittsburgh Playhouse, Barter Theatre, Laguna Playhouse, Goodman Theatre and the BBC, among others. Robinette collaborated with E.B.White on the authorized stage version of Charlotte’s Web, and he wrote the musical version with composer Charles Strouse.
BENJ PASEK and JUSTIN PAUL are the Tony, Oscar® and Golden Globe-winning songwriting team behind the Broadway musicals Dear Evan Hansen (Tony, Drama Desk Award, Obie Award, Outer Critics Circle Award, Helen Hayes Award) and A Christmas Story, The Musical (Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle Award nominations). Other musicals include Dogfight, (Lucille Lortel Award winner, Drama League, Outer Critics Circle, London Evening Standard Awards nominations), James and The Giant Peach, and Edges. Film projects include: La La Land (Lionsgate); Trolls (Dreamworks Animation). Upcoming film projects include The Greatest Showman (FOX); Snow White (Walt Disney Pictures); Medusa (Sony Pictures Animation); Aladdin (Walt Disney Pictures). TV credits include Smash, Sesame Street, The Flash and Johnny and the Sprites, and Fox’s upcoming A Christmas Story live musical. Additional honors: Richard Rodgers Award for Musical Theatre (American Academy of Arts and Letters); ASCAP Richard Rodgers New Horizons Award; Jonathan Larson Award. Both are graduates of the University of Michigan Musical Theatre program and members of the Dramatists Guild of America, Inc.
JOHN RANDO (Original Broadway Direction) Broadway credits include the currently highly acclaimed revival of On The Town, A Christmas Story, The Wedding Singer, Urinetown (Tony and Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Director), A Thousand Clowns and Neil Simon’s The Dinner Party. His recent Off-Broadway credits include this season’s Lives of the Saints (Primary Stages), The Heir Apparent (2014 SDCF Calloway Award for Direction – Classic Stage Company), All in the Timing (Primary Stages – 2013 Obie Award for Direction), and The Toxic Avenger, among many others. He directed the Encores! Productions of Little Me, It’ s a Bird… It’ s a Plane… It’ s Superman, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, On the Town, Damn Yankee, Face the Music, Strike Up the Band, Do Re Mi, The Pajama Game and Of Thee I Sing. He also directed the staged performance of Rodgers and Hammerstein’ s Carousel at the New York Philharmonic.
MATT LENZ (Director) NEW YORK: Pageant: The Musical (2015 Drama Desk Best Musical Nomination), The Irish Curse (Soho Playhouse), Idaho! (NYMF – “Best of Fest” and “Best Director” Awards), The Great Daisy Theory, Fingers and Toes (NYMF) and Alan Ball’s The Amazing Adventures of Tense Guy. NA TIONAL TOURS: A Christmas Story: The Musical (2014 and 2015), Hairspray, Catch Me If you Can. INTERNATIONAL: Matt directed Hairspray companies in Johannesburg, South Africa, the United Kingdom, Toronto, and Cologne, Germany. REGIONAL: Numerous plays and musicals at: Paper Mill Playhouse, George Street Playhouse, The Saint Louis MUNY , North Carolina Theatre, Maltz Jupiter Theater, Ogunquit Playhouse, Zach Theatre, Gulfshore Playhouse, Casa Manana, Gateway Playhouse, Short North Stage, Forestburgh Playhouse and Stamford Center for the Arts. BROADWAY: Associate Director on original productions of Hairspray, Catch Me If You Can, The Velocity of Autumn and Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (Resident Director). Matt is a member of SDC and a teaching artist with The Broadway Dreams Foundation. www.mattlenzdirector.com
WARREN CARLYLE (Choreographer) Broadway: Director and Choreographer for After Midnight (Brooks Atkinson), Chaplin (Barrymore), Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway (Broadhurst), Finian’ s Rainbow (St. James) and A Tale of Two Cities (Hirschfeld). Also on Broadway he provided Choreography for A Christmas Story (Lunt Fontanne), The Mystery of Edwin Drood (Studio 54) and the recent revival of Follies (Marriot Marquis). Off-Broadway credits include Cotton Club Parade, Girl Crazy, On The Town, Juno, and Stairway to Paradise (City Center Encores!); Working (Zipper), Slut! (A T A). Regionally, he directed and choreographed Limelight (La Jolla Playhouse), Buddy’ s T avern (The O’Neill Theater Center), and Lucky Guy (Goodspeed). He also choreographed Dancing In The Dark (Old Globe Theater), Randy Newman’s Harps & Angels (Mark Taper Forum), Camelot (Stratford Shakespeare Festival), 101 Dalmatians (Tour/Madison Square Garden), A Christmas Story (Tour), Mame (Kennedy Center),The Pirates of Penzance (Paper Mill, Goodspeed, Connecticut Critics Circle A ward for Best Choreography), The Baker’s Wife (Goodspeed), and Pageant (Second City Chicago). He is represented on film and television by Deception starring Hugh Jackman (20th Century Fox), “Hope and Faith” (ABC), “An Evening at the Boston Pops” (PBS), and Elton John’s Made in England music video. Warren received a 2013 Emmy nomination for his work on Carousel for Live at Lincoln Center.
JASON SPARKS (Associate Choreographer) Broadway Associate/ Assistant Choreographer Credits: Hello, Dolly! Starring Bette Midler (Spring 2017), She Loves Me (Studio 54), After Midnight (Tony Award Best Choreography Warren Carlyle) 68th and 69th Annual Tony Awards, Cotton Club Parade (City Center Encores!). Associate Director/Choreographer After Midnight Norwegian Cruise Lines, Carefree, Dancing’ with Fred and Ginger (Tour) Choreographer: Propaganda! (NYMF Best Choreography Award), The Years Between (MTF), Grand Hotel (St. Clements Theatre), Beehive (Pennsylvania Centre Stage). Penn State Graduate! @JasonASparks.
MICHAEL RADER (Associate and Resident Director) Highlights as a director or associate include: Off-Broadway: Stalking The Bogeyman (Outer Critics Circle Nomination), The York Theatre, You are Not Alone with Betty Buckley, Elegies: A Song Cycle, The Testament of Mary, Mandela! and Joe’s Pub; National Tours: Varekai (Cirque Du Soleil), Scrooge: The Musical; Regional: Sacramento Music Circus, Westport Country Playhouse, The Forestburgh Playhouse, The Human Race Theatre, The Dramatist Guild, The Actors Studio, and The Huron Playhouse. He has served as Artistic Director for Cirque du Soleil, a Broadway Liaison to the New York Department of Education, the Director of Entertainment for The Hole In the Wall Gang Camp and is the current Artistic Director of the Cape Playhouse in Cape Cod. SDC. www.michaelrader.com
WALT SPANGLER (Original Broadway Scenic Design) W alt designed the original Broadway production of A Christmas Story The Musical. Upcoming projects include the Broadway premiere of Natalie Babbitt’s acclaimed Tuck Everlasting, directed by Casey Nicholaw; John Steinbeck’s East of Eden adapted for the stage by Frank Galati for Steppenwolf Theater; and Firefly Field – a New American Circus. Please visit: waltspangler.com
ELIZABETH HOPE CLANCY (Original Broadway Costume Design) Broadway: A Christmas Story, Passing Strange, The Goat, or Who is Sylvia?, Bobbi Boland and The Ride Down Mt. Morgan. International: Death of a Salesman (Gate Theatre), A Few Good Men (Theatre Royal, Haymarket). New York: The Lady from Dubuque (Signature Theatre), Measure for Measure (Shakespeare in the Park), The Antigone Project (Henry Hewes nomination)
HOWELL BINKLEY (Original Broadway Lighting Design) Hamilton, Allegiance, After Midnight (2014 Tony nomination), How to Succeed… (2011 Tony nomination), West Side Story (2009 Tony nomination), Gypsy starring Patti LuPone, In The Heights (2008 Tony nomination), Avenue Q, The Full Monty, Parade, Kiss Of The Spider Woman (1993 Tony nomination.) Joffrey Ballet’s Billboards, Co-Founder and Resident Lighting Designer for Parsons Dance. 1993 Olivier and Dora Awards for Kiss of The Spider Woman. 2006 Henry Hewes Design, Outer Critics Circle and T ony A wards for Jersey Boys.
MICHAEL CARNAHAN (Scenic Design Adaption) Off-Broadway: The Skeleton Crew (Atlantic); I and You (59E59); The Happiest Song Plays Last (Second Stage); The Piano Lesson (Signature Theatre); The First Breeze of Summer (Signature Theatre); Life Could Be A Dream; The Marvelous Wonderettes; Three Mo’ Tenors; Pygmalion; Howie the Rookie; Brando. Regional: Arena Stage, American Conservatory Theater, McCarter Theatre, Williamstown TheatreFestival, Pasadena Playhouse, Two River Theater, Cleveland Play House, Laguna Playhouse, Utah Shakespearean Festival, Northlight Theatre, Signature Theatre (Arlington, VA), Bucks County Playhouse, Ogunquit Playhouse, Arsht Center, Musical Theatre West, San Jose Repertory, Center Rep. Broadway (Associate Scenic Designer): Allegiance; The River, Peter and The Starcatcher; ANN: The Ann Richards Play; Cyrano de Bergerac; The Importance of Being Earnest; Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson; All About Me; White Christmas; Curtains. www.michaelcarnahandesign.com.
LISA ZINNI (Tour Costume Design) is a New York based costume designer and stylist who’s work includes Broadway, Off-Broadway and regional Theatre. She designed season 3 of the Broadway themed hit web series Submissions Only. She was the Associate Costume Designer for the Tony winning Broadway productions of RENT and HAIR, as well as the national tours and international companies. (UK, Canada, Italy, China) Some of her regional design credits include Orlando Shakespeare Theatre, Pennsylvania Shakespeare festival, The Walnut Street Theatre of Philadelphia, The Riverside Theatre, The Arden Theatre company and Theatre Under the stars in Houston Texas. For more info visit LisaZinni.com
CHARLIE MORRISON (Tour Lighting Design) National/International Tours: Disney’s The Little Mermaid, How the Grinch Stole Christmas (NYC/ Tour), Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Miss Saigon, Aida (US, Taiwan, & China), Man of LaMancha, Guys and Dolls, Groovaloo (NYC, LA, Foxwoods, & US Tour), Hello Dolly!, My Fair Lady, The King and I (US Tour & Korea), The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Gypsy, 42nd Street (US & Japan), Smokey Joe’s Café, The Who’s Tommy (Europe & Japan), Titanic, The Music Man, many others. Regional: Paper Mill Playhouse, Shakespeare Theatre Company (DC), Goodspeed Musicals, Seattle Rep, Theatre Under the Stars, Dallas Summer Musicals, Kansas City Starlight, Pittsburgh CLO, George Street Playhouse, North Carolina Theatre, Playmaker’s Rep, Tulsa Opera, many others. Charlie is the recipient of two Helen Hayes A wards for Outstanding Lighting Design and has been nominated for seven Helen Hayes Awards. www.cmlighting.com.
GERARD KELLY (Hair & Wig Design) Broadway: Hair. T our: Ain’ t Misbehavin’, Hair, Hello, Dolly!, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, The Musical!, My Fair Lady. West End: Hair. New York: The Public Theater, The Pearl Theater, The Classic Stage Company. Regionally: Westchester Broadway Theater, Maltz Jupiter Theater, Dallas Theater Center, Maine State Music Theater, Carousel Dinner Theater, Phoenix Theater, Sierra Repertory Theatre, San Francisco Theater Works, Cape Playhouse, The Allmanson Theater, Sacramento Music Theater, Down Town Cabaret, West-Port Country Playhouse, George Street Playhouse. Shakespeare Festivals: New York, Lake Tahoe, New Jersey, Idaho, San Francisco. Movie: The Conjuring, Transamerica, Girls Will Be Girls, Notorious, The Ten, The Savages, The Other Woman. TV: Law and Order SVU, The Ru Paul Show, Are We There Yet. Others: The b-52’s, RuPaul, Charles Busch, Varla Jean Merman, Lypsinka, Jennifer Holiday, Laura Linney, Felicity Huffman, Marlo Thomas, Whoopie Goldberg, Lesley Mann, and William Hurt.
DEBORAH DENENBERG (Producer) Deborah began her career at the Upstairs Dinner Theater in Omaha, NE. In 1984, the Upstairs’ turnaround became the subject of a Harvard Business School case study, Lyric, Inc, still taught in business schools nationwide. Deborah helped create and build Big League Theatricals. Representative productions included: Guys and Dolls, The Secret Garden, Into the Woods, Driving Miss Daisy and The Who’s Tommy. She is currently developing a children’s musical based on a Jewish survival story, The Doll Maker’s Gift.
ALISON FRANCK (Casting Director) (CSA) has been working in casting of over 20 years. Current projects are national tours of A Christmas Story, The Musical! (3rd year), 42nd Street, and Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas (for the 7th year in a row). Her recent projects include: National Tours of The Producers, Saturday Night Fever Guys and Dolls, Hello Dolly starring Sally Strutters. Past tours of Hair, Dreamgirls, My Fair Lady, Ain’t Misbehavin’ starring Ruben Studdard and Frenchie Davis, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Off-Broadway plays, It’s Just Sex. & The Donkey Show (directed by Diane Paulus). Alison also worked in television casting of “Soul Man”, starring Dan Aykroyd, “LateLine”, starring Al Franken, “Talk to Me”starring Kyra Sedgewick, and pilots of “Freaks and Geeks”, and “Madigan Men”, and most recently “Recovery Road” on ABC Family. Also was the Casting director for several films including Broke Even starring Kevin Corrigan. Alison was the Resident Casting Director for Paper Mill Playhouse for 10 years, where she cast over 50 productions, including the Broadway transfer of I’m Not Rappaport, starring Judd Hirsch and Ben Vereen, directed by Daniel Sullivan. www.franckcasting.com
L. GLENN POPPLETON (Exclusive Tour Direction) currently represents Dr . Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas!—the Musical, A Christmas Story—the Musical, Mandy Patinkin in Concert, An Evening with Patti LuPone and Mandy Patinkin, John Lithgow Stories by Heart and The Last Two People on Earth: An Apocalyptic Vaudeville (starring Mandy Patinkin and Taylor Mac). Past tours include Cathy Rigby is Peter Pan, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast and Monty Python’s Spamalot.
WENDY J. CONNOR (Press and Marketing) Wendy is President of TRUE Marketing a full-service entertainment marketing firm based in Orlando, FL. TRUE Marketing boasts a full Marketing and Public Relations Consulting Team, Graphic Design Department, Social Marketing Strategy Team and In-House Video Production Team with capabilities in HD Field Production, Real-Time Green Screen Compositing, V oiceover Recording and Pre and Post-Production Editing. Wendy is also owner of two of the newest and most popular entertainment venues in downtown Orlando, The Abbey and The MEZZ. The MEZZ is a modern, urban-style event space boasting 7000 square feet of impeccably furnished décor featuring modern art, innovative LED lighting and a state-of-the-art sound system. The Abbey is committed to broadening the cultural offerings in downtown Orlando, and has been cleverly conceived as the ideal mixed-use venue to deliver exciting and diverse live entertainment options on a nightly basis.
BIG LEAGUE PRODUCTIONS/DANIEL SHER (Executive Producer) Led by Daniel Sher as owner and Executive Producer, Big League is celebrating its 28th season of producing, general managing and booking Broadway musicals and special attractions for touring throughout North America and worldwide. Among Big League’s significant achievements were its collaborations with Disney Theatricals on Elton John and Tim Rice’s Aida (North America, Taiwan and China) and with Cameron Mackintosh on a new production of Miss Saigon which toured for 4 years. Other noteworthy productions were the Japanese and North American touring production of the T ony A ward winning Broadway revival of 42nd Street as well as Meredith Willson’s The Music Man as newly conceived by Susan Stroman. Others were Footloose (Las Vegas, Atlantic City, North American tour), tours of Titanic, 1776, Peter Pan, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum starring Rip Taylor, andSouth America, Europe, and Japan. Big League produced the T ony A ward®-winning musical Ain’ t Misbehavin’ starring “American Idol” winner Ruben Studdard and the first national tour of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang flying car and all. More recent seasons included Hello, Dolly! starring Sally Struthers, Guys and Dolls, My Fair Lady, an original hip-hop dance show Groovaloo (Off-Broadway), Dr . Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! The Musical (annual National Tour, 2012/2014 at Madison Square Garden, Nashville Grand Ole Opry), Dreamgirls (US and Japan), Hair (US and Japan), and Bring it On (US and Japan). In this current season, Big League will continue touring its new production of A Christmas Story: The Musical and it will premiere a tour of The Producers featuring Susan Stroman’s original direction and choreography. The booking department at Big League, helmed by Vice President John Starr, is among the most respected in the industry.