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Silent Dancer

by Kathleen Cahill

April 10 - May 12, 2019


Playwright Kathleen Cahill
Director Cynthia Fleming
Play Dates April 10 - May 12, 2019
Show Type World Premiere, SLAC Original
Cast Austin Archer, McKenzie Barkdull, Makayla Cussen, Jorji Diaz Fadel, Darrell T. Joe*, Noah Kershisnik, Mikki Reeve*, William Richardson*, Savannah Roberts, Alice Ryan (*Member of Actors' Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States)
Other Notes Choreographer: Christopher Ruud

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Dangerous love, secret identities, maids, dancers, criminals, silent movies, and the most famous couple in New York – Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald. A groundbreaking dance/play/romance which expresses the pulse, the change, and the infinite possibilities of life in America.

CONTENT ADVISORY: This play contains adult themes.

News & Reviews

Creative Team

KATHLEEN CAHILL (Playwright) Kathleen Cahill’s awards include three Edgerton Foundation Awards, the Jane Chambers Playwrighting Award, two Connecticut Commission on the Arts Playwrighting Awards, a Massachusetts Artists Foundation Award, a Rockefeller Grant, a National Endowment for the Arts New American Works Grant, and a Drama League Award. Her play CHARM (NNPN Showcase) was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize; her play THE PERSIAN QUARTER was nominated for a Steinberg Award (both published by Dramatic Publishing). Her produced musicals include FRIENDSHIP OF THE SEA (North Shore Music Theatre); DAKOTA SKY (Olney Theatre); an opera, Clara; two opera/cabarets, A TALE OF TWO CITIES: PARIS AND BERLIN IN THE TWENTIES (Maryland Center for the Performing Arts);, a comic opera cabaret, FATAL SONG (most recently Utah Opera) and PERDIDA, the Winter’s Tale set in Mexico (most recently Catholic University, DC and the Grand Theatre, Salt Lake City. Published by Dramatic Publishing). Her plays include the comedy, COURSE 86B IN THE CATALOGUE (Salt Lake Acting Company); THE STILL TIME (Georgia Rep/ Porchlight Theatre, Chicago); the comedy, WOMEN WHO LOVE SCIENCE TOO MUCH (Porchlight Theatre and NPR Radio); JOY FOREVER (Cleveland Public, Firehouse Theatre, Massachusetts); CHARM (National New Play Network Festival, Salt Lake Acting Company premiere, Kitchen Dog Theatre, Dallas; Orlando Shakespeare; Taffety Punk, Washington D.C., New Hampshire Theatre Project, among others); THE PERSIAN QUARTER (Salt Lake Acting Company, Merrimack Rep.); HARBUR GATE, an NNPN commission. (Salt Lake Acting Company, 16thstreet theatre, Chicago); HENRY, LOUISE AND HENRI (one act); The Robertassey at Women’s Playwrights Initiative, Ivoryton Playhouse, CT. She wrote the screenplay for the independent feature, DOWNTOWN EXPRESS.

CYNTHIA FLEMING (Director) has been in the world of dance and theatre professionally for over 38 years, during which time she performed in the Broadway, National and International companies with A CHORUS LINE.  Since 1995 she has worn many hats at SLAC, including Choreographer, Director, Box Office Manager, and Director of Audience Services. She developed SLAC’s high quality customer service titled: Mayberry meets Space Odyssey, which is the foundation for the record-breaking number of subscribers. She conceived and created the position of Director of Communication and Audience Development and assembled the communication team to generate a renewed energy and excitement about the theatre. In 2010 she became Co-Executive Producer and is now honored to be SLAC’s Executive Artistic Director. Cynthia remains a working artist in the theatre and has choreographed many SLAC productions including SATURDAY’S VOYEUR for 16 years and directed/choreographed this musical for six years. Cynthia is proud to serve SLAC and its mission to engage and enrich community through brave contemporary theatre.

CHRISTOPHER RUUD (Choreographer) has been a part of the performing arts since birth. Growing up back stage at San Francisco Ballet he was immersed in the art of professional dance, performance, and stagecraft. Receiving the majority of his dance training at San Francisco Ballet School, he began his performing career on the Opera House stage at the age of nine. Christopher continued his training at the University of Utah as a student in the Ballet department. Absorbing all that he could from the environment that the celebrated William Christensen began he was hired into Ballet West in 1998. Quickly moving through the ranks he was named Principal Dancer in 2004. He has spent the last 21 years as a dancer for Ballet West performing a huge range of classical and contemporary repertoire both at home, all over the United States, and internationally - most notably to sold-out houses in China, Cuba, Scotland, Canada, Chicago, New York, and at the Kennedy Center receiving glowing reviews. In his time with the company he has danced principal roles in the works of many of the great masters of choreography.  Christopher has had success as a choreographer for Ballet West having his ballets performed in the Innovations program and at the annual gala performance garnering such awards as a New York Choreographic Institute Fellowship as well as several NEA grants. The annual Utah Arts Festival has sought a collaborative relationship with Christopher awarding him the Dance Commission for three years running and continues to rely on him to be a conduit to the dance community in Utah. He spent two years as the Director of Ballet West, and two teaching, coaching and choreographing for a group of 10-12 dancers, eight of whom are now Ballet West Artists.

LOREN WHITNEY RUUD (Assistant Choreographer) fell in love with dance at a modest dance studio in Arkansas at the age of five. Ever since, dance and the art of performance have been central to her life. Performing in Ballet Arkansas’ annual NUTCRACKER from the age of nine, she was swiftly moved upwards and onwards to an apprenticeship at the age of 12, performing in many classical and contemporary ballet works under the directorship of Kirt Hathaway. In her time abroad Loren began Miss Loren’s School of Ballet in England teaching both American Military children and local British children. While in England she continued her dance education taking classes with the English National Ballet. Loren moved on to academia at 19 but continued to broaden her dance expertise studying the Vaganova method while in school. In recent years Loren has been instrumental in the startup and daily operations of RUUDDANCES, a premier professional dance ensemble based in Salt Lake City, Utah. RUUDDANCES has thrived with Loren in the role of Ballet Mistress and Artistic Coordinator, having performed annually at the Utah Arts Festival and on tour to the world-renowned Jacobs Pillow.

DENNIS HASSAN (Set Design) is a Full Professor of Scenic Design at Utah State University, where he has designed over 180 productions for theatres from Hawaii to Maine.  He also designs costumes, properties, corporate events, immersive experiences, and puppetry. Favorites include AUGUST OSAGE COUNTY for the Fulton Theatre, LIGHT IN THE PIAZZA for Maine State Musical Theatre, SWEENEY TODD for ACT Honolulu, MACBETH (costumes) for Lyric Repertory Company, TALES OF HOFFMANN for Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theatre, and SHOCKHEADED PETER for Utah State University Theatre. He has an MFA in theatre design from The Ohio State University and has taught and mentored hundreds of students over an academic career that spans three decades. Dennis is delighted to return to SLAC where he has previously designed sets for STREETLIGHT WOODPECKER, WINTER, and FUN HOME.

NANCY HILLS (Costume Design) was born in a Studebaker in San Mateo, California. She is a Full Professor at Utah State University where she is head of the Theatre Costume Design Program. Her favorite plays to design are period pieces which include LES LIAISONS DANGEREUSES, PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, ENCHANTED APRIL, OUR COUNTRY’S GOOD, EMMA, MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING, and THE MISER.   She has also designed at the Artist Repertory Theatre in Portland, Oregon including NEXT TO NORMAL, AND SO IT GOES, THE PLAYBOY OF THE WESTERN WORLD, and BLITHE SPIRIT. Nancy has previously designed STREETLIGHT WOODPECKER, WINTER, and FUN HOME for Salt Lake Acting Company.   In 2013 Nancy was the recipient of the Janet Arnold Award from the Society of Antiquaries in London where she was funded to take patterns from two historic clothing collections in Herefordshire, UK.  In July 2018 she was invited to present her historic pattern research at the Society of Antiquaries at Unearthing the Past: Society of Antiquaries Research Showcase. In 2013, Nancy gave a TEDxTalk, on the impact of WWII on clothing called Make Do and Mend.  She is the mother of twin sons, Douglas and Tristan. 

MICHAEL J. HOREJSI (Light Design) is an Assistant Professor in the Performing Arts Design Program in the Department of Theatre at The University of Utah where he teaches Lighting Design, Video & Multi Media Design, and Drawing & Rendering. He has an MFA in Design and Technical Theatre from The University of Minnesota. Michael has extensive national and international touring experience with arena and theater shows, as well as sporting spectaculars such as The NBA All Star Jam Session and The USA Swimming Olympic Trials. Michael has worked as a technician and designer for theatres including Oregon Festival of American Music, The Guthrie Theatre, The Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, American Players Theatre, The Great American History Theatre, and others. Previously at SLAC, Michael has designed the set for the last three SATURDAY’S VOYEURs, projections for MERCURY, and lights for FUN HOME.

JENNIFER JACKSON (Sound Design & Composer) is excited to return for another season with SLAC. Previous design and/or original music credits include ROMEO AND JULIET (Yale Repertory Theatre); THE WOLVES, HIR, HAND TO GOD, HARBUR GATE, BULL SHARK ATTACK, STREETLIGHT WOODPECKER, BLACKBERRY WINTER, TWO STORIES (Salt Lake Acting Company); TWELFTH NIGHT, THE LAST FIVE YEARS, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, HENRY IV, PART I (Salt Lake Shakespeare); ION (Westminster College) and THE ORPHAN (Children of an Idle Brain Theatre Company - of which she is a founding member). Her sound installations have been exhibited at the Yale University Art Gallery and the University of Utah. Jennifer holds an MFA from Yale School of Drama and is on the faculty of the University of Utah Department of Theatre where her credits include LOVE'S LABOUR'S LOST, THE TWO NOBLE KINSMEN, GOOD KIDS, and SCHOOL FOR LIES. jenjacksonsound.com.

JOSHUA ROBERTS (Projection Design) graduated with his MFA in Lighting Design, Set Design, and Projection Design from Utah State University. Joshua has designed shows for a variety of theatres including: Hale Centre Theatre in Sandy, Lyric Repertory Company, Centerpoint Legacy Theatre, Pickleville Playhouse, and Tuacahn. Some of Joshua's favorite designs include: THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME at Hale Centre Theatre and MARY POPPINS at Centerpoint Legacy TheatrePreviously, Joshua was Projection Designer for HARBUR GATE and Assistant Set Designer for STREETLIGHT WOODPECKER. You can find more information about Joshua and his design work by visiting his website at joshuarobertsdesign.com.

JANICE JENSON (Producing Director & Prop Design) has worked at Salt Lake Acting Company for the past eight years and currently serves as SLAC’s Producing Director and designs props for every show.  She is a proud member of Actor’s Equity Association and has stage managed over twenty shows at SLAC, including the last eight SATURDAY’S VOYEURs. Previously, Janice has worked at Park City’s Egyptian Theatre, Dark Horse Company Theatre, Plan-B, and Tuacahn Center for the Arts. In 2008 Janice was selected as a USITT Stage Management Mentee, where she stage managed THE HISTORY OF DRAG. Janice is a graduate of BYU in Theatre Arts Studies and recently graduated from Westminster College with her Masters of Community Leadership. She also currently teaches stage management at Utah State University.

ADRIANNE MOORE (Dialect Coach) served as dialect coach on many previous SLAC productions including THE CAKE, HAND TO GOD, SURELY GOODNESS AND MERCY, STREETLIGHT WOODPECKER, TRIBES, GOOD PEOPLE, VENUS IN FUR, BLOODY BLOODY ANDREW JACKSON, RED, ANGELS IN AMERICA, CHARM, THE CARETAKER, SKIN IN FLAMES, I AM MY OWN WIFE, POLISH JOKE, and MEMORY OF WATER. Directing credits for SLAC include RAPTURE, BLISTER, BURN, 4,000 MILES, HOW TO MAKE A ROPE SWING, CIRCLE MIRROR TRANSFORMATION and HOLD PLEASE. Adrianne has also coached dialects for the American Players Theatre, Utah Shakespeare Festival, Pioneer Theatre Company (most recently CHARLES III), Utah Contemporary Theatre, The Egyptian Theatre Company, Pygmalion Theatre, Old Lyric Repertory Company, and Tuacahn Center for the Performing Arts. Film includes THE REDEMPTION OF SARAH CAIN and the AMC pilot GALYNTINE. Adrianne is a member of the Voice and Speech Trainers Association.

MARTINE KEI GREEN-ROGERS (Dramaturg) is an Assistant Professor at SUNY New Paltz, and the President of the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas. Her dramaturgical credits include: FENCES and ONE MAN, TWO GUVNORS at Pioneer Theatre Company; SWEAT at the Goodman; productions of RADIO GOLF, FIVE GUYS NAMED MOE, BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY, GEM OF THE OCEAN, WAITING FOR GODOT, SEVEN GUITARS, THE MOUNTAINTOP, and HOME at the Court Theatre; HAIRSPRAY, BOOK OF WILL, SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE, UNISON, HANNHA AND THE DREAD GAZEBO, COMEDY OF ERRORS, TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, THE AFRICAN COMPANY PRESENTS RICHARD III, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, and FENCES at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. She has also worked with NNPN and the Great Plains Theatre Conference.

JUSTIN IVIE (Stage Manager) is a proud member of Actors’ Equity who is thrilled be a part of SLAC’s 48th season! This is Justin’s seventh time stage managing for SLAC (STREETLIGHT WOODPECKER, WINTER, HAND TO GOD, MERCURY, FUN HOME, THE WOLVES) and SLAC audiences may recognize him from his acting work as Dev in STUPID F***ING BIRD, Jones in TOO MUCH MEMORY, and a ten-time cast member of SATURDAY’S VOYEUR. Justin has also directed SLAC’s 2019 production of THE CAKE as well as readings of GRANT & TWAIN and BANG-BANG (PAUSE) BANG. Justin has performed professionally for three decades (and counting) on stages across Utah. A Weber State University alumnus, Justin went on to earn his MFA in Acting at Northern Illinois University. He’s taught theatre and communications at LDS Business College, NIU, Triton College, and Weber State. Justin also designs scenery, props and theatrical masks, writes an occasional play, and sometimes even plays his banjo (when he's pretty sure no one is listening).

KATELYN LIMBER (Assistant Stage Manager) is a recent graduate of Westminster College with a BFA in theatre performance and is thrilled to be back at SLAC. Her previous credits with SLAC include MERCURY (Assistant Sound Designer), THE WOLVES (Assistant Stage Manager) and three heightened readings she sound designed: GRAB THEM BY THE PUSSY, REYKJAVIK, and REMARKABLY NORMAL. She has also sound designed for Pinnacle Acting Company (THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST, TITUS ANDRONICUS, GIDEON'S KNOT) and Westminster College (LUNA GALE, OUR COUNTRY'S GOOD, LOVE AND INFORMATION, and DON JUAN COMES BACK FROM THE WAR.).

STIRLING BRENNAna (Assistant Set Design) has been a scenic designer and artist for over four years. He started in theatre as a performer where he won several state awards. Stirling has worked for the Lyric Repertory Company, Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theatre, and Hale Center Theater. Previously at SLAC Stirling worked as the Assistant Set Designer on FUN HOME.

ALLY THIEME (Assistant Costume Design) is from Rib Lake, Wisconsin and received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire. She is currently working on obtaining a Master of Fine Arts degree in costume design from Utah State University. Her most recent work involves costume designing for USU’s productions of XANADU, THE OBSOLETE UNKINDESS OF RAVENS, and AWAKE AND SING. She is excited to have the opportunity to work with SLAC again after working as Assistant Costume Designer for FUN HOME last spring.

RACHAEL HARNED (Assistant Light Design) is a senior double majoring in PADP for Lighting Design and Scenic Design at The University of Utah. She is excited to be working on this production. She has previously served as the assistant lighting designer for BIG LOVE (Babcock Theatre). As well as the lighting design for COMPANY (Babcock Theatre) and WAIT! (Pygmalion Theatre Company) Most recently she had the opportunity to be assistant lighting designer.

RICHARD TYLER (Assistant Sound Design) is a senior at the University of Utah, where he is studying for a degree in Psychology with a minor in Theatre. Having previously worked on a few productions in school, this is his first time working on a professional production, and he is honored to have the opportunity. Previous credits include: THE MUSIC MAN JR. (Winthrop 2009 - Albion Middle School); ONCE UPON A MATTRESS (2010 - Albion Middle School); BYE BYE BIRDIE (Randolph 2012 - Brighton High School); OKLAHOMA (Cord Elam 2013 - Brighton High School); ONCE UPON A PLAYGROUND (Flirt 2014 - Brighton High School); ANTIGONE (Chorus 2014 - Brighton High School); TWO NOBLE KINSMEN (Stage Technician 2017 University of Utah). He thanks the Salt Lake Acting Company

DWIGHT CAMILLUCCI (Assistant Projection Designer) is a technical director and set designer based out of Logan Utah. He is earning his MFA at Utah State University, after graduating summa cum laude from the University of Montana Western with a BA in modern history. He has been actively involved in theatre for almost ten years, including every single production at USU since his beginning his career there in 2016. By blending his strengths of creativity and a tireless work ethic, he produces truly incredible shows. Dwight’s credits include set design for ANNA KARENINA, ONCE UPON A MATTRESS, and SIDEWAYS STORIES FROM WAYSIDE SCHOOL, and technical direction for HELLO DOLLY at Trollwood Performing Arts School in Moorehead, Minnesota.

Press Release


Photo Gallery

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Mikki Reeve as Rosie Quinn in SILENT DANCER. Photo: Joshua Black

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Jorji Diaz and Mikki Reeve in Salt Lake Acting Company’s SILENT DANCER. (Photo: dav.d daniels/ dav.d photography)