This is Our Story
THIS IS OUR STORY:
a coming out anthology
Written and Curated by Nicholas J. Clarey and Tommy Jamerson
Co-Presented as a pride month offering with Pleasant Valley Productions
ALL PROFITS FROM TICKET SALES AND DONATIONS WILL BENEFIT
THE LGBT RAIN FOUNDATION OF ESSEX COUNTY
WOULD YOU LIKE YOUR LGBTQ-OWNED BUSINESS TO HAVE A TABLE AT OUR PRE-SHOW FAIR?
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER YOUR BUSINESS FOR A SPOT TODAY!
Directed by Nicholas J. Clarey
Produced by Elizabeth Rogers and Maryann Galife Post
Production Stage Manager Felicity D. Selby
Assistant Stage Manager Alicia Finke
Properties Master Isaiah Abdul-Qawi
Logo Design by Matt Kersey
June 17 & 19
OSPAC OUTDOOR THEATER
(4 Boland Dr. West ORange, NJ)
7:00pm LGBTQ Owned Business, & Resource Fair
$10 at door only
ONLINE TICKETS NOT AVAILABLE
UNASSIGNED LAWN SEATING
BRING YOUR OWN CHAIR
June 25 & 26
Burgdorff Center for the Performing Arts
(10 Durand Rd. Maplewood, NJ)
(and 3:00 Matinee on June 26)
7:00pm LGBTQ Owned Business, & Resource Fair (and 2:00pm on June 26)
$20 at door
INDOOR RESERVED ASSIGNED SEATING
ABOUT THE SHOW
This is Our Story: A Coming Out Anthology examines and celebrates the experiences of LGBTQ+ people of diverse backgrounds before, during, and after coming out. Through the lens of real stories submitted by real people, playwrights Nicholas J. Clarey and Tommy Jamerson craft a series of vignettes, told through monologues, scenes, poems, and songs, to bring these stories, struggles, celebrations, and triumphs to life on the stage.
THIS PRODUCTION CONTAINS MATURE CONTENT AND ADULT LANGUAGE
Additional content: Caitlyn Roper, Jennifer Bobbi (aka Aunt Barbara), Christine Jane, Nicole D'Angelo, Kevin Kahn, Maya Moseberry, Vivian Jean, Mark LaSalle, Daniel McKamey, Eric Peterson, Alice Allen, Austin Brecht, Kris Berrios, Brandi Chavonne Massey, John Bronston, Davor Golub, Marcus Troy, Kayla Stewart, Vikrant Lal, Matt Kersey, Jennifer James Davies, Chad Navarro, Daniel Koh, Alex Carney, Stanley Wilson, Felicity D. Selby, Niassim Williams.
JENNIFER BOBBI aka AUNT BARBARAJennifer is thrilled to be part of such a diverse cast and honored to take part in this inspiration piece. Past roles for Jennifer include Betty in the web series "Spring Street," and Veronica in the award winning short film, "Backup Plan" (Available on Amazon), for which she won Best Actress at the Astoria Film Festival. Jennifer is probably best known for portraying the character of Aunt Barbara the Tupperware Lady! As Aunt Barbara, Jennifer became the top-selling Tupperware Salesperson in North America, hosting over 4,000 Tupperware parties and performances. Her story has been written about in New York Magazine, Newsweek, Huffington Post, Yahoo, The National Enquirer, Newsday and the LA Times. She has been featured on MSNBC, NBC New York, ABC New York, Good Morning America, ABC World News Now, Inside Edition, Talk Soup, Anderson Live, and Daily Shot with Ali Wentworth.
LAURA BYRNEThis is Laura’s debut with interACT. She is an actor/ director/ designer who has appeared in productions around the tri-state area since age 5 when her cousin typecast her as the Little Redheaded Girl in Charlie Brown. She is a 6-time Perry award nominee with nominations in both performance and design. Laura is grateful to be back on stage in North NJ after a three-year stint living in Philadelphia. Performing at the OSPAC especially feels like coming home as she spent many a summer doing shows here with Theatre Under the Stars. Favorite past roles include Maggie in Jake’s Women, The Ensemble in The Laramie Project, Bunny in Gemini, and Frances in Light Up the Sky. Laura would like to dedicate her performance to Brian and Debbie who 2020 took way too soon.
ARNOLD BUCHIANEis very happy and proud to be a part of this very special night of theater. This is the first time he is working with interACT and Pleasant Valley Productions. Arnold has a long resume in New Jersey's community theater community. He has appeared many times with Summit Playhouse, Chatham Players, Westfield Playhouse, Stony Hill Players, and Hunterton Hills Playhouse. An antique dealer by day, and part of the long time couple known as Tom&Arnold. A few of his favorite roles have been C.S. Lewis in "Shadow Lands," Frank in "Over The River," and the multiple roles in "The Dining Room," "Sylvia," and "Grapes of Wrath." He is also proud of directing the first "Angels in America " produced in New Jersey and the award-winning "Marvin's Room," among many others.
RONNIE D CARNEYRonnie D Carney (Newark, NJ) is a dance educator who began training with Alfred Gallman, while studying theatre at Arts High School. In 1995, he graduated from the University of the Arts with a BFA in Jazz Dance Performance. During a short performance career he performed with Ballet South Project and Douglas Dunn and Dancers. Afterwards, Ronnie turned his focus to Dance Education. He began with a teaching position at Newark’s Arts High School. Thereafter, he has taught for The Joffery Ballet School, ABT’s Summer Arts Institute, The Mill Ballet School, New Jersey Performing Arts Center, and served as Co-Director of AlieyCamp Newark. As a choreographer, his work has been shown at many festivals in NJ and on The Roxey Ballet and Prism Dance Works. In 2003, he earned his MA in Dance Education from NYU and was published in the Journal of Dance Education, which lead to him presenting at conferences across the US. Ronnie is happy to return to the stage.
LUCIEN EDMELucien Edme is a recent graduate of Kean University with a Bachelor’s degree in Theatre. This is will be Lucien's first performance with interACT Theatre Productions and PVP, he is thrilled to be part of the show. His past acting credits include Curtis in "Sister Act," Mr./Billy in "Sunday in the Park with George," Riley in "Parade," Gomez Addams in "The Addams Family" and more. Lucien, who is also a professional playwright, received the 2021 Bauer Boucher Playwriting Award from Premiere Stages for his original two-act play, "Councilman." As a recording artist, Lucien has an EP titled “555”, which is now available on all music streaming platforms. Lucien would like to credit his family and friends for all of his successes.
HANNAH HARDINGHannah is thrilled to be performing in such an important show. A lifelong Maplewood resident, coming out was a complex process for her, so she is glad that now she can help other people share their own stories. Hannah has been performing for 13 years and will be at Queen’s University Belfast this fall studying Drama. In the past, she has appeared in "Sister Act!," "Two Gentlemen of Verona," "Alabama Story," "The Big Meal," and "Hairspray!" She would like to thank her family and friends for their support, the cast and crew for their dedication to these stories, and the community for always being open and accepting. This is Hannah’s first show with interACT and PVP.
MAXIMILLIAN JOHNSSONMaximilian is both excited and grateful to be a part of “This Is Our Story”, which will be his first production with interACT and PVP, as well as his first production in the US. Maximilian's most recent productions consist of the feature film “Magisterlekarna” directed by Ylva Forner, the short film “HAN”, written and co-directed by himself and Julia Gahne, and “The Tales of Egil Skallagrimsson” put up by Theater troupe “Konstnärshämnden”. Maximilian would like to thank Nicholas Clarey for opening the door to this project for him, his team and friends at Konstnärshämnden, as well as the faculty at Stella Adler Studio of Acting for their great support.
DOREEN JONESDoreen is delighted and honored to be a part of interACT's and PVP's important production of "This Is Our Story..." She is a "real mother" of three beautiful kiddos, Olivia, Cooper and Ruby and has been with her equally beautiful and endlessly supportive wife, Julia for 23 years. In her spare time Doreen is a LSW and works with children and adolescents and is obsessed with her garden. She's done roughly a zillion plays and musicals and will spare you the list. She hopes "TiOS" will inspire your inner LGBTQ+ advocate.
VIKRANT LALVikrant Lal is making his interACT and PVP Debut. He wants to thank Nick and Tommy for giving him the opportunity to take part in this amazing production with this talented cast, and allowing him to share his story.
LEXY LEFKOVITS has appeared in such roles as Oda Mae Brown in Ghost (Rhino Theatre), Gary Coleman in Avenue Q (Rhino Theatre), Juror #4 in Twelve Angry Women (AlphaNYC), Mrs. Phelps in Matilda (Rhino Theatre), the First Lady in Black Nativity (interACT Theatre Productions), Catherine in The Best Man (Old Library Theatre), and Tybalt in Romeo & Juliet 1921 (Old Library Theatre). She is thrilled to bring to be part of this production and hopes the stories showcased here will encourage compassion and inspire hope. She thanks her family, especially her husband and son, for their support.
MARGARET LEONEMargaret Leone’s performance experience is rooted in touring Europe for several years performing in the musical Hair directed by the show’s creator James Rado.Margaret is known for her role in the Los Angeles premiere of Job and the Snake and Purim Day at theLambs Theatre in NYC. Margaret’s recent theatre credits are Mother in "Passing Strange" and Mrs.Johnstone in Blood Brothers.Musical performances include,The National Anthem soloist Jersey City Gay Pride Parade,Don’t Tell Mamas,The Broadway Comedy Club and The Metropolitan Room. Margaret is happy to return to interAct Theatre Productions family after performing in interAct Sings:Stay Tuned,interAct Sings:British Invasion and Langston Hughes Black Nativity.Thank you Nicholas Clarey and Tommy Jamerson for creating a powerful and important message to the world and for the joyful opportunity to be part of telling these beautiful real stories.Grateful for the help from my Mother during this production, much love Mom & Family.God is Good!
PIERCE V. LOPierce V. Lo is thrilled to be a part of TIOS and to get back to live theatre. His first production with interACT was "Pride and Prejudice" where he played Mr. Darcy and earned an "Audience Fave" Award for Leading Actor. Pierce's acting credits for theatre, film, and television include "Three Sisters", "Importance of Being Earnest", "Underpants Godot", "Thoroughly Modern Millie", "Bell, Book And Candle" "Come Find Me", "Glass Figurines", "Run For Your Life", and "Gotham". Pierce would like to salute the unbelievable courage and fortitude of the people who offered their stories that shaped this piece and stands in awe of the members of the LGBTQIA+ community who dare to be themselves.
KIRSTEN MACALDOKirsten Macaldo is excited to return to theatre in their first production with interACT and PVP. She is a soon to be graduate of the William Esper Studio, where she studied the Meisner technique under Deb Jackel and David Newer. In their free time, they enjoy writing music and playing PC games. She’d like to thank the cast and crew for a warm welcome, and her mother, Marites, mentor, Leeanne, and girlfriend Emilie for their unending support of her creative endeavors
BRIELLE MCARDLEThis is Brielle’s first production with interACT and PVP and she is extremely grateful. Past roles include Lendall/Pete/Marci/Movement Narrator in "Almost, Maine" and First Player/Second Gravedigger in "Hamlet." She won a NJACT Perry Award for Outstanding Stage Management of a Play for "Hamlet" and an Arthur Award for Best Lighting Design for "A Comedy of Tenors." They were nominated for Outstanding Sound Design of a Play and Musical for Hamlet and Avenue Q respectively. When not doing theatre in some form or another they can be found running their business, The Calming Cauldron. They are very thankful to be part of such a special show.
JANET PAINTERDelighted to be back on the stage with interACT. This is the first straight play (as opposed to musicals) I have done since high school! Well not exactly a straight play, but am delighted to be here sharing the stage with these amazing talented cast and directors. Love is Love!
CAITLYN ROPERCaitlyn Roper is thrilled to be onstage again! Her last show before the pandemic was The House on Haunted Hill, interACT’s October 2019 show, where she ran the sound board. She was last onstage as Gymnasia in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum and in Dracula as one of the Draculae (a role she shared with the charismatic Miguel Vega). Previous stage credits include Van’s Sister in Dog Sees God and Vee Talbot In Orpheus Descending, both at Fairleigh Dickinson University. When not working in theater, Caitlyn teaches English at the Academy of Saint Elizabeth where she also runs the school choir and moderates the GSA. She came out as bisexual in the fall of 2012. Caitlyn would like to thank her family for their never ending support and interACT for continuing to challenge her comfort zone and give her the opportunity to participate in theater.
MICHAEL SCHULZMichael Schulz is excited to be doing his first show with InterACT. Michael is a hair stylist, makeup artist and salon owner and no stranger to the stage. He has performed in shows such as, The Subject Was Doorknobs, the Addams Family, Jesus Christ Superstar, Cinderella, and West Side Story. He would like to thank his partner Gabe and his staff for their support, the directors, the producers and the cast and crew for the opportunity to be a part of such a great show.
KAYLA STEWARTKayla Stewart is a 26 year old New Jersey native. She is excited to return to her theater home for such an amazing show. She would like to thank the director for a chance to tell these amazing stories. She would like to dedicate this show to the people that are struggling to find the words to express who they are.
DANNY VIOLADanny is ecstatic to be making his interACT debut telling these intimate stories with such an incredible company of heartfelt creatives. He spends September through June working as Technical Theatre Director and Teacher in the Bronx at Ethical Culture Fieldston School. Though rarely in front of the bright lights of the stage, he was last seen as Emmett in Legally Blonde at Mystic Vision Players. He is also a Board Member of The NJ Playlab. He would like to thank the creative team for their hard work, dedication and sincerity for taking a chance on this backstage guy. A special thank you goes out to his husband for his love and patience and his family and friends for their love and support. This one is for you, Mom; love you.
This program is made possible in part by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts and administered by the Essex County Division of Cultural and Historic Affairs.