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Program: Antony & Cleopatra



at Classic Stage Company’s Lynn F Angelson Theater

Antony & Cleopatra

by William Shakespeare
In a modern verse translation
by Christopher Chen

Directed by: Desdemona Chiang

Dramaturg: Desdemona Chiang

Stage Manager: Diane Healy

Assistant Stage Manager: Violeta Picayo

Casting: Ada Karamanyan

Sound Design and Original Music by: Matt Callahan


Anthony Michael Lopez
Antony, Clown

Barzin Akhavan
Philo, Second Messenger, Pompey, Canidius, Attendant, Servant, First Soldier, Captain, Diomedes, Guard

Ben Quinn
Messenger, Lepidus, Attendent, Ambassador, Servant, Second Soldier, Second Guard, Proculeius

Benjamin Bonenfant
Demetrius, Third Messenger, Octavius Caesar

Bill Connington
Alexas, Maecenas, Taurus, Thidias, Soldier, Sentry, First Guard

Danaya Esperanza
Charmian, Varrius, First Watch

Ellen McLaughlin
Enobarbus, Decretus

Kat Griffin
Iras, Menecrates, Octavia, Messenger, Second Watch

Marsha Stephanie Blake

Olivia Negrón
Soothsayer, Messenger, Menas, Soldier, Scarus, Dolabella, Third Guard

Terri Weagant
Mardian, Agrippa, Eros, Servant, Third Soldier, Egyptian

There will be one 15-minute intermission.

A short talkback with members of the creative team will take place immediately following the reading.

Originally commissioned by Oregon Shakespeare Festival as part of Play on! 36 playwrights translate Shakespeare.

The Play On Festival is supported by a generous grant from the Hitz Foundation.

All performers in this production are members of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States. The use of any recording device, either audio or video, and the taking of photographs, either with or without flash, is strictly prohibited. Please turn off all electronic devices such as cellular phones, beepers, and watches. The use of cellular phones in the theater is prohibited by New York City law.

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Creative Team

Headshot Image for Christopher Chen

Christopher Chen

Playwright, Antony and Cleopatra

Christopher Chen is an Obie Award-winning playwright whose work has been...

Christopher Chen is an Obie Award-winning playwright whose work has been performed across the United States and abroad. His plays include Caught (Obie Award for Playwriting, Barrymore Award, Drama League Nomination), The Hundred Flowers Project (Glickman Award, Rella Lossy Award, James Tait Black Award shortlist), Into The Numbers (Belarus Free Theater International Contest of Modern Drama- 2nd Place), The Late Wedding, Mutt, Passage and You Mean To Do Me Harm. Chris is the recipient of the Lanford Wilson Award, the Sundance Institute/Time Warner Fellowship, the Paula Vogel Playwriting Award, and he is the inaugural recipient of the Ollie Award. Current commissions include Audible, LCT3, Manhattan Theatre Club, Playwrights Horizons, the Royal Shakespeare Company and The Wilma. A San Francisco native, Chris is a graduate of U.C. Berkeley, and holds an M.F.A. in playwriting from S.F. State.

Christopher is working on Antony and Cleopatra – Click here for more details!

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Headshot Image for Desdemona Chiang

Desdemona Chiang

Dramaturg / Director, Antony and Cleopatra

Desdemona Chiang is a stage director based in Seattle and the San Francisco...

Desdemona Chiang is a stage director based in Seattle and the San Francisco Bay Area. Co-Founder of Azeotrope (Seattle).

Directing credits include Oregon Shakespeare Festival, California Shakespeare Theater, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Playmakers Repertory Company, Long Wharf Theatre, ACT Theatre, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Aurora Theatre Company, Seattle Shakespeare Company, Shotgun Players, Crowded Fire Theatre Company, Seattle Public Theatre, Impact Theatre, FringeNYC, Playwrights Foundation, Golden Thread Productions, Washington Ensemble Theatre, One Minute Play Festival, Ohio Northern University, University of Washington, and Cornish College of the Arts, among others. Assisting and dramaturgy credits include: Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Intiman Theatre, Playmakers Repertory Company, A Contemporary Theatre, California Shakespeare Theater, Arizona Theatre Company, Mark Taper Forum, Magic Theatre, Theatreworks, Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre, among others. Adjunct Faculty, Cornish College of the Arts.

Awards/Affiliations: Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise in Theatre, SDC Sir John Gielgud Directing Fellowship, Drama League Directing Fellowship, TCG Young Leader of Color, Lincoln Center Theater Directors Lab and Directors Lab West. Gregory Award Recipient for Outstanding Direction. Intersection for the Arts Triangle Lab Artist-Investigator.

Desdemona working on Antony and Cleopatra – Click here for more details! 

BA: University of California at Berkeley
 MFA Directing: University of Washington School of Drama

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Headshot Image for William Shakespeare (1564-1616)

William Shakespeare (1564-1616)


Plays: All’s Well That Ends Well; Antony and Cleopatra;...

Plays: All’s Well That Ends Well; Antony and Cleopatra; As You Like It; The Comedy of Errors; Coriolanus; Cymbeline; Edward III; Hamlet; Henry IV, Parts One and Two; Henry V; Henry VI, Parts One, Two and Three; Henry VIII; Julius Caesar; King John; King Lear; Love’s Labor’s Lost; Macbeth; Measure for Measure; The Merchant of Venice; The Merry Wives of Windsor; A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Much Ado about Nothing; Othello; Pericles, Prince of Tyre; Richard II; Richard III; Romeo and Juliet; The Taming of the Shrew; The Tempest; Timon of Athens; Titus Andronicus; Troilus and Cressida; Twelfth Night; The Two Gentlemen of Verona; The Two Noble Kinsmen; The Winter’s Tale.

Poems: “Venus and Adonis,” “The Rape of Lucrece,” “The Phoenix and the Turtle,” Sonnets (154).

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Headshot Image for Anthony Michael Lopez

Anthony Michael Lopez

NEW YORK: Off-Broadway: Light Shining in Buckinghamshire (New York Theatre...

NEW YORK: Off-Broadway: Light Shining in Buckinghamshire (New York Theatre Workshop, dir. Rachel Chavkin), Othello (starring Daniel Craig & David Oyelowo, dir. Sam Gold), Dessert (dir. Whitney White), The Artificial Jungle, Agatha Christie’s The Unexpected Guest (Theatre Row). NATIONAL TOUR: The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Doug Panch). REGIONAL: Vanity Fair (Shakespeare Theatre Company and A.C.T. San Francisco), Henry V (Hartford Stage), Nike, or We Don’t Need Another Hero (A.C.T. San Francisco), The Penalty (The Public), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Queens Theatre), All The Rats & Rags (Joe’s Pub). FILM: Mapplethorpe (starring Matt Smith, Tribeca FF), Anomaly, Pop Meets The Void. TELEVISION: “Broad City,” “Homeland,” “The Knick,” “Half Life” (Pilot).
Pronouns: He/him/his

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Headshot Image for Barzin Akhavan

Barzin Akhavan

Broadway-Network, NYC-Hamlet (Waterwell), Regional- Seattle Rep, ACT SF,...

Broadway-Network, NYC-Hamlet (Waterwell), Regional- Seattle Rep, ACT SF, Berkeley Rep, Marin Theatre Co, San Jose Rep, Arizona Theatre Company, Lookingglass, CATF, Merrimack Rep, Virginia Stage, Arena Stage, The Guthrie, Folger Theatre, Colorado Shakespeare Festival, 4 seasons at the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival, and 5 seasons at Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

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Headshot Image for Ben Quinn

Ben Quinn

Ben Quinn is an NYC-based actor and multi-instrumentalist, originally from...

Ben Quinn is an NYC-based actor and multi-instrumentalist, originally from Cincinnati, OH. After completing his undergraduate theater training at the University of Evansville, he received his M.F.A from the American Conservatory Theater. He was nominated for Best Actor at the Planet Connections Festival Awards for the roles of Paul in ‘Rusalka’ and Mack in ‘Close Your Eyes and Sleep’ last summer. Aside from acting, he plays mandolin and guitar in his americana band The Good Morning Nags, who released their first full length album, “Hard Hope”, this past December. www.benquinn.net

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Headshot Image for Benjamin Bonenfant

Benjamin Bonenfant

Benjamin Bonenfant is based in New York City and most recently appeared as...

Benjamin Bonenfant is based in New York City and most recently appeared as Octavius in Julius Caesar at Theatre For A New Audience. New York credits also include Robin in The Heart of Robin Hood and Aumerle in Richard II at Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival. In two seasons at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival: Great Expectations, Hamlet, Julius Caesar, and Mary Zimmerman’s The Odyssey. Regional: Denver Center (Hamlet, Benediction, A Christmas Carol, When We Are Married); Colorado Shakespeare Festival, 5 seasons (Henry V, Wittenberg, Henry IV parts 1 & 2, Merry Wives of Windsor, The Tempest, Romeo and Juliet, The Inspector General, Comedy of Errors, Taming of the Shrew, King Lear, Much Ado About Nothing); Arvada Center (The Lion In Winter); Boulder Ensemble (Ambition Facing West, And The Sun Stood Still); Curious Theatre (Red, Colorado Theatre Guild “Henry Award,” Best Supporting Actor); Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center (4000 Miles); and TheatreWorks (Love’s Labour’s Lost, Salome, The Seagull, The Bacchae, Our Town, As You Like It. TV: “Bull.” He has a BA from University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Represented by KMR Talent.

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Headshot Image for Bill Connington

Bill Connington

Bill Connington: Selected credits: Zombie at Theater Row. Film: Zombie. Upcoming...

Bill Connington: Selected credits: Zombie at Theater Row. Film: Zombie. Upcoming indie film: Love, Repeat, a romantic dramedy; Poughkeepsie Is for Lovers. Graduate of London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. Lecturer in Acting at Yale School of Drama. www.billconnington.com

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Headshot Image for Danaya Esperanza

Danaya Esperanza

Off-Broadway: The Tempest (Public), Breitwisch Farm (Esperance), Mary...

Off-Broadway: The Tempest (Public), Breitwisch Farm (Esperance), Mary Jane (NYTW), Othello (NYTW), Twelfth Night (Public), Men On Boats (Playwrights Horizons, Clubbed Thumb), Washeteria (Soho Rep), Our Lady of Kibeho (Signature Theatre), School Girls (MCC Playlabs). Regional: Romeo and Juliet (STC), Protect the Beautiful Place (McCarter), Another Word for Beauty (Goodman),. TV: “The Blacklist,” “Elementary.” Training: The Juilliard School
Pronouns: she/her/hers

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Headshot Image for Ellen McLaughlin

Ellen McLaughlin

Ellen McLaughlin is an award-winning playwright and actor. Her plays include...

Ellen McLaughlin is an award-winning playwright and actor. Her plays include Tongue of a BirdA Narrow BedIphigenia and Other DaughtersTrojan WomenInfinity’s HouseHelenThe PersiansOedipusAjax in IraqKissing the FloorSeptimus and ClarissaPericles and Penelope. Her work has been performed in New York Off-Broadway and regionally as well as overseas. Producers include The Public Theater, National Actors’ Theater, Classic Stage Co., New York Theater Workshop, The Guthrie, The Intiman, The Mark Taper Forum, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Actors’ Theater of Louisville, and The Almeida Theater in London. Among her honors are the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize and the Lila Wallace Reader’s Digest Writer’s Award. Her Trojan Women was nominated for a 2017 Drama Desk Award for Best Adaptation.

She has taught playwrighting at Barnard College since 1995. Other teaching posts include Princeton University and Yale School of Drama.

As an actor, she is most well known for having originated the part of the Angel in Tony Kushner’s Angels in America, appearing in all workshops and productions of the play through its Broadway original run.

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Headshot Image for Kat Griffin

Kat Griffin

Kat is an NYC based Actor/Singer/Photographer. They are a Nonbinary &...

Kat is an NYC based Actor/Singer/Photographer. They are a Nonbinary & Queer advocate for representation of marginalized voices on stage in Theatre. Kat has performed in numerous cabarets & concerts in NYC at venues including but not limited to 54 Below, Joe’s Pub, & Birdland Jazz. Recent credits include Madeline True (Lippa’s THE WILD PARTY/BAR New Haven) & Benjamin Tallmadge (AGENT 355/Musical Theatre Factory).
Kat is currently saving for gender confirmation Top Surgery- check out the link in their Instagram bio to help! @Kat_Griffin_  www.katgriffin-actor.com/
Pronouns: They/She/He

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Headshot Image for Marsha Stephanie Blake

Marsha Stephanie Blake

Marsha Stephanie Blake can currently be seen playing a mama on Netflix shows...

Marsha Stephanie Blake can currently be seen playing a mama on Netflix shows See You Yesterday (directed by Stefon Bristol, produced by Spike Lee) and When They See Us (directed by Ava Duvernay). Upcoming films to be released later this year include Luce (directed by Julius Onah and starring Octavia Spencer) and The Laundromat (director Steven Soderbergh). She was recently seen onstage as Emilia in Othello opposite Daniel Craig’s Iago, has appeared on Broadway in The Merchant of Venice and Joe Turner’s Come and Gone (Paul Green Award from Tony Kushner). Off-Broadway credits include An Octoroon and Marie Antoinette at Soho Rep and Hurt Village at Signature Theatre (for which she won an Audelco Award). She is a real-life mama to two girls.

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Headshot Image for Olivia Negrón

Olivia Negrón

Olivia Negrón– Broadway: Cuba & His Teddy Bear (w/ Robert De Niro),...

Olivia Negrón– Broadway: Cuba & His Teddy Bear (w/ Robert De Niro), Serious Money (w/ Alec Baldwin & Kate Nelligan)
Off-Broadway: Circle Rep Lab, LaMAMA, HB Playwrights.
Regional: Two River Theatre Co., Portland Center Stage, Mark Taper Forum,  South Coast Rep, Atlanta’s Alliance, Philadelphia Theatre Company, Coconut Grove Playhouse, Merrimack Rep, Walnut Street Theatre, Canon Theater (Beverly Hills), La Jolla Playhouse, and as Ana in The Clean House by Sarah Ruhl at four regional theatres; TheatreWorks, Palo Alto, Mixed Blood, Minneapolis, The Kitchen Theatre, Ithaca and Boise Contemporary Theatre.
Film: The Last Fare, Outliving Emily, The Devil’s Whisper, Everything Relative (Sundance Film Festival), The Clairvoyant, and Captivity.
Television, Etc.: Devious Maids, Law and Order, Law and Order; SVU, Ms. Negrón was motion-captured for the role of Patricia Madrazo in Grand Theft Auto V, is the Fairy Godmother in the web series, “Tinderellas,”” and served as Executive Producer on the award-winning HBO documentary feature ATOMIC HOMEFRONT.

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Headshot Image for Terri Weagant

Terri Weagant

Terri Weagant is Brooklyn-based actor, solo performer and writer. She has...

Terri Weagant is Brooklyn-based actor, solo performer and writer. She has performed in many parts of the US, Canada, Australia and the Czech Republic. Regional theatre credits include Roe (Asolo Repertory Theatre; Handy Award), Bo-Nita (Urbanite Theatre), Every Brilliant Thing (Denizen Theatre), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Antony and Cleopatra, Julius Caesar, Measure for Measure, Henry V (Seattle Shakespeare Company), These Streets (ACT Theatre), The Cider House Rules (Book It Repertory Theatre), Antony and Cleopatra (Consolidated Works), Archangels Don’t Play Pinball (CHAC), Karaoke Suicide is Painless (Radial Theatre Project). Film and television credits include Mozart in the Jungle (Amazon), The Jazzman’s Jazzman (CroMagnon Films), Big Boy (Pinprick Films). Terri is producer of the documentary film Above the Bamboo Room, which will premiere in Haines, Alaska in 2019. She currently teaches at The Playwrights Horizons Theatre School at NYU.

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Further Reading

Welcome Letter from Lue

For the first half of my career at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, I was the “new play girl”, doing what literary managers since time immemorial…

Read More

Good Tickle Brain Synopsis

Who needs a five-act structure? See what Antony & Cleopatra is about in only three panels…

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Play Synopsis

Read a play synopsis from the Folger Shakespeare Library, and see scans of some of the original Folios!

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Play On Festival Staff

Lue Douthit, Executive Director
Taylor Bailey, Producer
Summer Martin, General Manager
Sally Cade Holmes, Line Producer
Hannah Lang, Assistant Line Producer
Matt Hagemeier, Assistant Festival Producer
Emma Hogan, Script Supervisor
Ada Karamanyan, Casting
Cameron Bell, Erin Michelitsch, Micah Ammons, Nicolas Di Miele,
Peter Charney, Savanah Sanchez, Production Assistants
Blake Zidell and Associates, Press Representative
Gold Rush Creative, Marketing Consultation
Ligature Creative, Graphic Design

CSC Administrative Staff

John Doyle, Artistic Director
Toni Marie Davis, Chief Operating Officer/GM
Gina Cimmelli, Director of Audience Services
Phil Haas, Director of Marketing and Communications
Brendan McNamara, Assistant General Manager
Michael Mullen, Education Coordinator
Cassandra Nwokah, Executive Assistant
Oliver Pattenden, Director of Development
Megan Sover, Company Manager
Whitaker Gardner, Courtney Kuhbach, Board Operators
Emily Murphy, Megan Sover, Clarisse Van Kote, Box Office Associates
Alex Irish, Jarvis Griggs, Emily Murphy, Cassandra Nwokah, Megan Sover, House Managers