Zoetrope Cast & Crew
Porcia Lewis (she/her)
Porcia Lewis started her career in the arts at the tender age of 5. She was in theatre productions from elementary school throughout college. After dropping out of college, Porcia began to work with Moving Mountains Inc., a non-profit theatre company, focusing on acting and dance. She began to work on major productions with Moving Mountains, and eventually ventured into film with their professional sector. Porcia enjoys gaining perspective from each area in the industry, whether it’s writing, acting, directing, and even enjoying craft services. She hopes to eventually secure a deal with Marvel as Misty Knight in future film productions.
Co-Director & Art Director
Tess Howsam (she/her)
Brooklyn-based interdisciplinary artist, Tess Howsam curates and directs ekphrastic shows that blend theater, installation art, and performance. Howsam seeks to subvert theatrical expectations while building cross-disciplinary collaborations rooted in story and collaboration, viewing art as a dialogue to address contemporary sociological, political, and environmental issues.
Howsam is the Founding Artistic Director of the Exquisite Corpse Company (2012-present).
Her installation Corseted Community is a part of an international exhibit Puentes - No Muros/ Bridges - Not Walls, (El Centro de las Artes de Querétaro (CEART) Querétaro, Mexico, March 2018/ Casa de Europa Mexico, San Miguel, Mexico, October 2018).
Playwright In Residence
Leah Barker (she/her)
Leah Barker's plays have been developed or performed by Hartford Stage, Troy Foundry Theatre, Capital Repertory Theatre, Dixon Place, Spark Creative Works, Mount St. Mary's University, Valley Players, and Exquisite Corpse Company. She created and edited the collection TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES: PLAYS FOR ONLINE THEATRE, which is published by Dramatists Play Service. At ECC, she was a co-writer for WATER, WATER, EVERYWHERE and SECESSION 2015, participated in two Writers' Labs, and had two Corpse Revival productions of her work. She's thrilled to be a 2018–21 ECC playwright in residence. Her selected acting credits include THE CRIPPLE OF INISHMAAN (Centenary Stage Company, BroadwayWorld Regional Award nomination), A PRESENTATION BY THE PEOPLE OF LAKE VICTORY FOR OUR LEADER (the Gym at Judson), AS YOU LIKE IT (Theater 2020), and SUGAR!, a feature starring Alice Ripley and Robert Clohessy (Atlantic City Cinefest Award for Best Supporting Actress). She has also worked as an assistant director for Lincoln Center Education (MACBETH) and Amore Opera (DON GIOVANNI). Leah is a graduate of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. www.LeahBarker.com.
Playwright in Residence, Music, Lyrics and Vocals
Emily Krause (she/her)
Emily Krause is a Brooklyn-based playwright, actor, and songwriter originally from Portland, Oregon. Her work has been read or developed with support from the Great Plains Theatre Conference, the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center, Exquisite Corpse Company, The Tank, the Playwriting Collective, the Bechdel Group, The Hearth, and TinyRhino. Her work has been produced at the Center for Performance Research, the IRT 3B Developmental Series, and on Governors Island. She most recently wrote and developed the (virtual) play Do You Think About Me, Too? as a guest artist at Whitman College. BA: Whitman College. Proud alum of the National Theater Institute at the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center.
Playwright In Residence, Lyrics and Music
Elinor T Vanderburg (she/her)
Elinor T Vanderburg is a Black-American writer, performer and voice artist born in Washington, D.C. She writes plays for and about misfits, creating troubled chimerical landscapes to call her audiences to real-world r/evolutionary action. Recent Stage: BLOODSHOT (Dir. Sanaz Ghajar, Exponential Festival/Target Margin Theater 2020); Dancing Girl (Dir. Jenny Beth Snyder, SheNYC 2019); Water, Water, Everywhere... (Dirs. Tara Elliot and Tess Howsam, Exquisite Corpse Company); K-A-A-R-O-N (FGP 2018); The Human Incubator (Dir. Martina Bonolis, SheNYC 2017). Recent COVID: BLOODSHOT: The Call (Dir. Sanaz Ghajar, Exponential Festival/underlords 2021); Voices From A Pandemic (Dirs. Christopher Windom, Nigel Semaj, and Sanaz Ghajar, Notch Theatre Company); HMLT (Dir. Sanaz Ghajar, The Weekly Weekly). Recent V/O: Bread Barbershop (Choco, Sausage;
Netflix); World of Winx (Aisha; Netflix); Black Women Are Scary: And Then I Wake Up (by Wi-Moto Nyoka). Elinor is a Co-Creative Director of Fresh Ground Pepper, a writer-in-residence with Exquisite Corpse Company and The Shelter, the Art Director of SheNYC, and one half of the illusory theater company, underlords, alongside her partner, Drew. Elinor lives and works in Bushwick, Brooklyn. //@raisehelinor
Liz Frost (she/her)
Liz Frost is theater producer based in New York City. A proud graduate from University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Washington, she graduated with high honors with a Bachelor of Arts in Theater Arts and a minor in Mathematics. Liz is originally from Irvine, California where her love for the arts was nurtured and supported by her two loving parents. Liz is inspired by passionate and hard working people. Currently she is working with Tess Howsam and the amazing Exquisite Corpse Company. www.elizabethfrost.com
Zachry J Bailey (he/him)
Zachry J. Bailey (COVID Consultant) is a Health & Safety Manager and COVID Compliance Officer with Vigilant EHS Solutions. He advises and works with arts organizations, film and TV productions, and studios as they create COVID protocols and operate safely and effectively during the pandemic.
Zachry has worked with various companies including A24, C1 Media, Radical Rhinoceros Pictures, Exquisite Corpse Company, and Guild Hall, among others. Zachry helps producers and executives create and manage a cohesive plan forward, and oversees onsite compliance and guidance day-to-day. You can expect a well managed production, and efficient collaborator when working with Zachry.
Zachry’s other passions have led him to be an AEA Stage Manager, freelance Producer and Management Professional. In his free time, Zachry is a plant dad and amateur baker. Please email email@example.com to contact Zachry.
Sari Schein (she/her)
Bio coming soon...
Krista Smith (she/her)
Krista Smith is a New York based Lighting Designer and Interdisciplinary Artist, dedicated to insightful visual storytelling. NYC credits include: Coop (Paradise Factory), At Black Lake (The Tank), Good Person of Setzuan (Atlantic Theater Company), Twin Size Beds (Public Theater’s Under the Radar Festival & Joe's Pub), This American Wife (New York Theater Workshop Next Door), Doll’s House Pt3 (Ars Nova). Regional work: Two River Theater Little Shakes, Triad Stage, Yale Repertory Theater, California Shakespeare Theater, Cinnabar Theater, Custom Made Theatre, Aurora Theatre, and Theatre FIRST. www.KristaSmithLD.com
Sound Designer & Graphic Designer
Ran Xia (she/her)
Ran Xia is a Shanghai born, Brooklyn based playwright, director, and sound designer. She's a Resident Director at the Tank (inaugural Artist of the Year Award 2019) where she directed the world premiere Ben Gassman's Independent Study, US premiere of Ailís Ní Ríain's The Tallest Man in the World, her own play In Blue, and most recently, Howard Rubenstein's new adaptation of Prometheus Bound by Aeschylus, as a theatrical cinematic hybrid production. Alumnus of Pipeline Theater's Playlab 2020. Her works have been seen in physical and virtual spaces including The Tank, The Brick, Dixon Place, HERE Arts Center, Governor's Island, and more. Upcoming: Orlando by Sarah Ruhl at Barnard, Fall 2021. ranxia.info
Interactive Devise Inventor & Audio Engineer
Jesse Vance (he/him)
Jesse Vance is a Sound Designer, multi-instrumentalist, composer, artist and Engineer with a specialty in immersive installations. He currently works as the AV Systems Engineer for the Icahn School of Medicine in Manhattan. His most recent works are original scores for streaming shows and short films under the alias “The Dead Kids.”
Matsy Stinson (she/her)
Matsy is a stylist and artist based in the East Village, with a passion for size-inclusive, sustainable design. Notable credits include the music video Warriors for the band Too Many Zooz, films Marry Harry and Sleepaway Slasher now streaming on Amazon, and work at theatres around the NYC area including La Mama ETC, The Barrow Group, Lincoln Center, HERE Arts Center, The Tank, Theatre for the New City, 59E59 Theatre, The New Ohio, The Argyle Theatre and The Living Theatre. Her published styling work includes spreads for Féroce & Elegant Magazines. When not designing, sewing or styling, she has mentored students from the Yale Dramatic Association, NYU Tisch, and has hosted workshops at The Barrow Group School. Additionally, she has taught sewing and design to kids and teens at Curious Jane Camp in Brooklyn, and through a series of videos she created with 17 Magazine called Fashion to D.I.Y. For.
Emily Addison (she/her)
Emily Addison is a self-taught painter, illustrator, and graphic designer. Her work is reflective of her value in equity, diversity, and inclusion. Addison runs a small media and publishing organization called Vital Information that works to empower people in her community in Brooklyn, through digital media and printed material. As a high school graduate, Addison has carved out a space for herself as a working professional regardless of her level of traditional education. It is her unique perspective as a creative that has shaped her art and work in activism. She is a staunch advocate for the rights of working people, queer folks, and black and brown people. Her work has been featured in the Corseted Community international exhibit Puentes - No Muros/ Bridges - Not Walls curated by ECC Artistic director and Founder Tess Howsam. (El Centro de las Artes de Querétaro (CEART) Querétaro, Mexico, March 2018/ Casa de Europa Mexico, San Miguel, Mexico, October 2018).
Sean T McGrath (he/him)
Sean T. McGrath is a multi-faceted theater artist and technician with a Master’s Degree in Ensemble Theatre from London’s Rose Bruford College. Recent Production Management credits include Eureka Day (Colt Coeur), Sylvia (New York Deaf Theatre), and 17 Minutes and All The Rage (The Barrow Group). Recent Sound Engineer credits include Mike Birbiglia’s The New One (Cherry Lane Theatre/Bull Journey Productions), Proof of Love and The Way She Spoke (Audible Theater at Minetta Lane). In addition to his work in theater he was recently the Assistant Director for the pilot Everything Happens for a Reason and will serve in the same role on the upcoming short film The Sanctity of Liz. He is also a regular participant in The Farm Theater Company’s Playwriting Workshop with Padraic Lillis and serves as the Co-Artistic Director of The NOW Collective.
Daniella Caggiano (she/her)
DANIELLA CAGGIANO is a freelance director and native New Yorker. She is a former MTC Directing Fellow, Drama League Resident, and alum of the Lincoln Center Directors Lab. Named one of The Interval’s “Women to Watch”, Daniella has directed or developed work at NYTW, Joe’s Pub, The Lark, MTF, WOW Cafe, HERE, and 54 Below among others. Favorite projects include a site-appropriate Fun Home in a funeral home (starring Tony nominee Jenn Colella), Next To Normal, Vinegar Tom (performed with an original Riot Grrrl score), Macbeth, Tumacho (Assistant, dir. Leigh Silverman) and School Girls; Or, The African Mean Girls Play (Associate, dir. Rebecca Taichman). MFA The New School, BA Sarah Lawrence College
Dominica Montoya (she/her)
Dominica Montoya is a multi-media artist based in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. An NYU Alum, with a degree in history and education, she’s channeled this passion for culture, community, and storytelling into a range of outlets including short stories, script development, and hip-hop collaborations as the one and only, Mini Smallz. Dominica has continued her studies with some of NYC’s most legendary creative institutions including the Stella Adler Studio, UCB, and The New York School of Burlesque. Lover of tunes, treats, and fashion things, she can be found city-strolling, photo-snapping, and snacking in and around New York City. Enter the universe at smallzworldnyc.com & follow her adventures on Instagram @minilikesmall.
Vanessa Lynah (she/her)
Vanessa Lynah is a native New Yorker originally hailing from Queens. She is extremely happy and proud to be working with ECC again and is amazed at their continued ability to create original, captivating, challenging works and make them come to life. Vanessa's latest works includes "Trouble In Mind - A Celebration of Black Playwrights" - The Barrow Group, "Bang Bang Zoom" - Varak Baronian, "Water Water Everywhere" - ECC, and "Dear Ms. Kitt". If you'd like to see what Vanessa is up to next, you can check out her IG page: @nesscaloo.
Jules Forsberg-Lary (she/they)
Jules is a storyteller, songster, and writer. She could not be tickled any pinker to be returning to performing in front of something other than her computer screen. And is incredibly grateful to play Bae in this production and to the Exquisite Corpse Company and all of its brilliantly talented and genuinely kind members. Also to her family, friends & cats for keeping her joyful. You can catch Jules’ voice as Chloe in iHeart Radio’s queer musical comedy podcast “Tampon Rock”.
Starr Kirkland (she/they)
Starr Kirkland is a bicoastal actor and spoken word artist. You may have recently seen her in the New York Times Critics’ Pick, TJ Loves Sally 4 Ever (JACK). Favorite credits include of the woman… (Normal Ave), HOTTENTOTTED (The Tank), Julius Caesar (Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival), Hephaestus (Theatre in Asylum), The Love Song of J. Robert Oppenheimer (Columbia Stages), AliceGraceAnon (New Georges), and The Average-Sized Mermaid (State of Play). She has participated in readings and workshops at Joe’s Pub, New Georges, The Lark, Ensemble Studio Theatre, SPACE on Ryder Farm, La Mama, Plays and Players, Dixon Place, Bushwick Starr, Ars Nova, and Seven Devil’s with a long list of wonderful collaborators. Her community and theatre work often combine as she works with Realize Your Beauty promoting self-esteem and positive body image through theatre arts, and performs an original one-woman show promoting literacy at The Morgan Library and Museum as Belle da Costa Greene. In a topsy-turvy world, you can often find her upside down: whether it be in a silk, walking on her hands, or generally being strange in a corner. Thanks, Loves! www.starrkirkland.com
Leana Gardella (she/her)
Leana Gardella is a Brooklyn Based Actor, Fight Director, and Intimacy Choreographer. She last worked on a touring production of The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show and the US premier of the Lehman Trilogy (Park Avenue Armory) before the pandemic. She is thrilled to be working with such a dynamic group, especially after this last year!
Voice of Fish
Phillip Christian Smith (he/him)
Phillip Christian Smith is a 2020-2021 Playwrights Realm Writing Fellow, Lambda Literary Fellow, Winter Playwrights Retreat, Blue Ink Playwriting Award Semi-Finalist, Finalist for The Dramatists Guild Fellowship and New Dramatists, Finalist and Semi-finalist PlayPenn, Two time Semi-finalist for The O’Neill (NPC), and runner- up in The Theatre of Risk Modern Tragedy writing competition for his play The Chechens, which also won Theatre Conspiracy’s playwriting award, and will be produced in a future season. He has been a semi-finalist for Shakespeare’s New Contemporaries (ASC), finalist for Trustus, Playwright in Residence Exquisite Corpse and founding member of The Playwriting Collective. 2021 Playwright in Residence: Quicksilver Theatre’s Playwrights of Color Summit. 2021 Sewanee Scholar. His work has been supported by Primary Stages (Cherry Lane) ESPA, Fresh Ground Pepper, the 53rd Street New York Public Library, and Forge. He writes about black people, gay people, black gay people, and the issues which persistently follow them. MFA Yale School of Drama, BFA University of New Mexico.
Rehearsal/Previews Stage Manager
Allie Marotta (she/her)
Allie Marotta is a collaborative theatre artist and arts educator specializing in immersive, experiential, and devised theatre. Allie teaches for various arts organizations and currently consults on experimental performance throughout NYC. She is a NYC staff correspondent for No Proscenium and a founding creator of experiential theatre company You&I. Education: MA Contemporary Performance Practices (RHUL), BA Acting, BA Directing (Pace University). www.allie-marotta.com