Art has worked in Alaska theatre for twenty five years, and is in his 6th season as Artistic Director at Perseverance Theatre. He holds a BA in history from Harvard and a MFA in theatre from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. His home is in Juneau with his wife, Akiko Nishijima, who is also a theatre artist. As Artistic Director at Perseverance, Art has commissioned half a dozen plays, and produced the premieres of Battles of Fire and Water (performed in Russia, English and Tlingit) by Dave Hunsaker and The Blue Bear by Luan Schooler and Leon Ingulsrud. Art is a set and lighting designer, one of only a handful of designers to lead a regional theatre. He has designed dozens of productions for Perseverance, Anchorage Opera and many more Alaska producers; for regional theatres including People’s Light and Theatre Company, Sacramento Theatre Company, Aspen Opera Center; and, in New York City, Juilliard, Epiphany, and The Manhattan School of Music. Art is a member of the National Theatre Conference (nationaltheatreconference.org), and is a graduate of the Foraker Group’s Catalyst for Non Profit excellence program. Art was recently selected as one of 50 arts leaders from around the world by National Arts Strategies to participate in their Chief Executive Program, which is designed to equip arts executives with ways to thrive in a changing world (artstrategies.org). Art has served as a grant panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts, Alaska Arts and Culture Foundation, and the Rasmuson Foundation, as a member of the stearing committee for the Alaska Cultural Trust, and as a reader of new plays for the Playwrights Center of Minneapolis, Alaska Native Playwrights Project, Native Voices at the Autry. Thank you for your interest and support of Alaskan theatre.
Tom has directed and acted for Perseverance Theatre, Fairbanks Shakespeare Theatre and The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey among other companies since 2000.
Maggie grew up in Northern Vermont and graduated with a BA in Sociology and Environmental Studies from St. Lawrence University in Upstate New York. She found her passion for Alaska working as a trolling deckhand out of Sitka over the summers all through college. During that time she met and married a commercial fisherman. After pursuing graduate studies in Sociology at Michigan State University she relocated to Juneau in 2013. Maggie joined Perseverance Theatre part-time in 2014 and became the Development Director in 2015. Maggie is excited to be a part of the Perseverance team and loves working to promote Alaskan made theatre.
Kathleen grew up in Alaska but graduated from Saint Mary's University of Minnesota with a double major in Theatre and Studio Art. She considers herself a jack-of-all-trades in the theatre profession as she has worked as a stage manager, props designer, costume designer, puppet designer, tour manager, actor, finance administrator and now, finally, as the Production Manager. Kathleen has spent almost her entire professional career working and training in Alaskan theatres. She worked with the Fairbanks Shakespeare Theatre over the 1999 - 2004 summers and at Perseverance Theatre since January 2002.
BJ is excited to explore Alaska with Perseverance Theatre. Born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, BJ has been across the world on tour and is thrilled to be in the beautiful landscape of Alaska to continue working with talented artists. After receiving a BS from the University of Evansville, BJ has stage managed in Atlanta at The Center for Puppetry Arts, The Rialto Center for the Arts and Pinch ‘N’ Ouch Theatre; in Annapolis with Compass Rose Theatre and spent summers in Holland, Michigan with Hope Summer Repertory Theater. When not stage managing, BJ can be found mixing concerts or experimenting in the kitchen.
Amy has just completed her MFA in creative nonfiction at UAA. When she’s not working at Perseverance you might find her playing her fiddle with friends, or ukulele with the Juneau Jambusters; teaching knitting, crochet, and other wool crafts; writing for The Capital City Weekly; or blogging about food, crafts, and life in Alaska at her blog, The Hook and I. Amy also writes a column for The Cordova Times newspaper, and is a featured knitting and craft expert on Sulia.com She has a thirteen-year-old daughter and a nine-year-old son who help her enjoy Alaska to its fullest.
Joshua worked in front of and behind the camera on independent projects at AFI, USC, and UCLA. He spent 12 year in the financial sector, but his love of filmmaking was revived in 2009 with his role in the feature film Beekeepers. Since then he has worked in front and behind the camera on several productions. He has spent time on the board of Alaska Dance Theatre, and been the Programming Director for the Anchorage International Film Festival. He is currently the Treasurer of the Alaska Film Forum.
Frank Henry Kaash Katasse, is an Alaska Native from the Tlingit clan Tsaagweidí. Frank is an actor, director, producer, improviser, educator and playwright. Frank received his Bachelor’s Degree in Theatre Arts from the University of Hawai’i: Mānoa. Frank currently serves as the Board President of Juneau Douglas Little Theatre (JDLittletheatre.org) and has been involved with Perseverance Theatre (PT) since the fall of 2008. His body of work at PT includes World Premieres of Alaska Native themed plays, Battles of Fire and Water, Cedar House, Reincarnation of Stories, and Our Voices Will Be Heard. Other PT productions include The Government Inspector, The Skin of our Teeth, Marisol (2nd Stage), Vashon (Directed on 2nd Stage), Oklahoma!, and Chicago. In the spring of 2017, PT will co-produce (along with Native Voices at the Autry and La Jolla Playhouse) the world premiere of Katasse’s play They Don’t Talk Back.
Lauren MacKenzie Miller is a graduate of the esteemed North Carolina School of the Arts. Ms. Miller has designed for companies such as Academy Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia; Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Alaska Repertory Theatre, Alaska Light Opera Theatre, Anchorage Opera and Carolina Opera. She is also the Technical Director for the Anchorage Concert Association, Anchorage Symphony, Anchorage Concert Chorus and Anchorage Opera. Her lighting credits with the Anchorage Opera include: The Magic Flute; Turandot; Lucia di Lammermoor; Madama Butterfly; The Flying Dutchman; The Mikado and numerous others. She has designed the lighting for the premiers of Echoes and Triumph with the Anchorage Symphony. She is a recipient of the Anchorage Mayor's Arts Award for Individual Artists of the Year and was recently nominated for the BP/YWCA Women of Achievement.
Bryan graduated from University of Alaska Southeast, where he studied Theatre and English. He founded the UAS Drama Club, S.C.R.I.P.T. (Students for the Creation, Reading, Interpretation and Production of Theatre), where he and other students from UAS produced contemporary plays for the students at the University and the community at large. Bryan has appeared in a number of shows at the University, as well as being in Perseverance Theatres productions of Of Mice and Men, Seven Homeless Mammoths Wander New England, and Othello. In addition to the stage he also starred in the film 1 1/2 Days shot locally last Summer.
Todd spent his formative years running lights for the cover band NEXXT in Louisville Kentucky long ago and refined his skill in Bloomington Indiana as a graduate student. He is happy to rejoin the Perseverance Theatre clan for another season. He has done lighting design in both Bloomington and Juneau most recently in productions such as Opera to Go's Dido and Aeneas and Juneau Lyric Opera's La Bohème. Mr. Hunt moonlights as an opera conductor.
Betsy is a long time musician and live sound veteran. Best known perhaps as the founder of the Yukon/Alaska group “the Glacial Erratics”, she is currently managing “Studio A”, Juneau’s full service audio production and recording facility. Betsy loves being part of the Perseverance team and running a recording studio. Look her up if you have an audio project in mind!
Born with Tlingit and Dena’ina heritage, Vera Starbard (Bedard) turned to Native culture for writing inspiration. She began editing newspapers in 2000, and made writing and editing part of her work since. Vera completed a fiction book with an award from the Rasmuson Foundation, and received numerous state and national awards for both editing and writing. She is currently First Alaskans Magazine Editor, Dark Winter Productions Co-Founder, and Writing Raven Communications Owner.
Enrique’s Perseverance credits include Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Treasure Island, Oklahoma!, Seminar, Bigfoot and Other Lost Souls, A Christmas Carol, O Lovely Gloworm, Yeast Nation, Equus, Tommy, and Hair.
Enrique is an ensemble member of Generator Theater Company with whom he has performed in True West, Romeo and Juliet, Dying City, and [title of show]. Enrique is also a regular at The Colonial Theater, in Westerly, Rhode Island and has performed in Romeo and Juliet, As You Like It, Two Gentlemen of Verona, and recently, The Tempest. Enrique holds a B.F.A. in Regional Theatre from Webster Conservatory in St. Louis, MO and an M.F.A. in Acting from the University of Texas at Austin.
Over the coming season, in addition to playing roles in Vonya and Sonia and Masha and Spike and Chicago, Enrique will be working with Perseverance’s artistic staff, current company, and guest artists both in Juneau and Anchorage, conducting research into artistic companies elsewhere, convening meetings with Alaskan theatre artists, and helping us craft proposed models of what an Alaskan theatre’s artistic company might look like.
James Sullivan’s past performances with Perseverance Theatre have been God of Carnage, Oklahoma!, Animals Out Of Paper, Vashon, Tuesdays With Morrie, and Circle Mirror Transformation. He has a BFA in Theatre from Syracuse University. James comes from Portland where he performed in Jakers’ production of Silence, Integrity’s production of Wonder of the World, in Public Playhouse’s The Nerd, Moonlight and Magnolias, and It’s a Wonderful Life. James also performed in Chicago, including 5 years of long-form improvisation at ImprovOlympic and several plays with Zeppo Productions.
Born and raised outside of Washington, D.C., Joseph is excited to join Perseverance Theatre as the Artistic Intern for their 2016-17 season. He has experience in acting and carpentry with the Virginia Shakespeare Festival and experience in directing, producing, acting, and carpentry from the College of William & Mary, where he graduated with a B.A. in Theatre and Economics. His directing credits include Seascape, The Script, Oleanna, Big Love (Assistant), and Marisol (Assistant).