The Liar

by David Ives
Adapted from a comedy by Pierre Corneille

June 29; July 5, July 7, July 13*, July 15*, July 20, July 22, July 26*, July 28*

An adaptation by David Ives of Pierre Corneille’s 1643 comedy, THE LIAR is about a swaggering young swain who seems incapable of telling the truth. Mistaken identities, misunderstandings, and hilarious complications ensue in language that is contemporary, very accessible and in pentameter!


Peter Zazzali, Director
Dr. Zazzali has been directing and acting professionally in the US theatre for the past twenty years.  His credits include over 100 productions in New York City and regionally at institutions such as the Guthrie, The Acting Company, Target Margin, PCPA Theaterfest, George Street Playhouse, New Jersey and Utah Shakespearean Festivals, and numerous others.  A faculty member at Hunter College and the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City, Peter teaches acting, voice and speech, and theater history.  He received his education at the California Institute of the Arts (Bachelor of Fine Arts), the University of Delaware (Master of Fine Arts), and City University of New York (Ph.D.).


Jesse Dreikosen, Set / Properties Designer
Jesse is very excited to be back for his fifth season at The Texas Shakespeare Festival, where he previously designed Hamlet, The Beaux Stratagem, Taming of the Shrew, and Ernest in Love.  He received his Master of Fine Arts degree in scene design from Purdue University and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in theatre design from Viterbo University in La Crosse, Wisconsin. He is Head of Design and Production at Florida International University in Miami, Florida. He worked as the resident set designer for three seasons at New Theatre.  Favorite shows at New Theatre include Madagascar (Carbonell nomination), Paradise, and The Sunken Living Room.  He has also designed professionally for The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, The Texas Repertory Theatre Company, The Mint Theater Company, The Red Fern Theatre Company, The Ohio Theater, The Renaissance Theatre, 6th Street Playhouse and has also assistant designed at The Indiana Repertory Theatre.  He is currently the Vice-Commissioner of Education in the Scene Design & Technologies Commission for The United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT) and Vice-Chair of Design, Technology and Management for The Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival Region IV. He has received both regional and national awards for his designs.

Emily Waecker, Costume Designer
Emily is excited to return for her third season with TSF.  She lives in Chicago, where her recent designs include: The Turn of the Screw, First Folio Theatre; Accidental Rapture, 16th Street Theater; and Brand, Red Tape Theatre Company.  Her design for the Remy Bumppo Theatre Company’s Les Liaisons Dangereuses was nominated for Chicago theatre’s Joseph Jefferson award.  Regional credits include The Beaux’ Stratagem and Ernest in Love, both for TSF, and The Fall of the House, Theatre Squared (Fayetteville, AR).  Emily holds an Master of Fine Arts degree in costume design from Purdue University.

Anthony Galaska, Lighting Designer
Tony Galaska is excited to return to TSF for his fifth season. He is currently Assistant Professor of Lighting Design at Florida International University in Miami.  Prior to joining the faculty at FIU, Tony worked as a designer in New York City with companies such as Toy Box Theatre Company, The Gallery Players, Wings Theatre Company, Metropolitan Playhouse, and New Perspective Theatre Company.  He also works regionally with The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey and The Texas Shakespeare Festival. He received his Master of Fine Arts degree in lighting design from Purdue University, a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from The University of Wisconsin Stevens Point and an Associate of Arts degree from The University of Wisconsin-Waukesha.

Benjamin G. Stickels, Sound Designer
Benjamin is a Sound Designer, Audio Engineer, and Educator.  He is excited to once again return to TSF, where he has now designed sound for 27 productions (Julius Caesar, Two by Two, The Taming of the Shrew, among others).  He has also designed and/or engineered sound for theatres in Kansas City, including the Unicorn Theatre, the Coterie Theatre, the Kansas City Rep, and Actors Theatre – Kansas City, as well as university productions in Charlotte (NC), Kansas City (MO), and Kalamazoo (MI).  Shows in Kansas City include the world premieres of Green Whales at the Unicorn and Nadya for UMKC.  A native of Michigan, he is currently living in Charlotte, NC where he is the Audio Engineer and Assistant Production Manager in the Performing Arts Services unit of the College of Arts+Architecture at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, where he works with the departments of Theatre, Dance, and Music in all their production needs.  He is a member of the United States Institute for Theatre Technology, the Audio Engineering Society, the Shakespeare Association of America, and the Southeastern Theatre Conference.

Jennifer Burke, Vocal Director
Jennifer Burke is returning for her fourth consecutive season as the vocal director at TSF.  A New England native, Jennifer has called South Florida home since 2006 and is an Associate Professor at the University of Miami, teaching voice and speech in the Bachelor of Fine Arts theatre training program and serving as Artistic Director of the SEEDS (Scientists and Engineers Expanding Diversity and Success) Interactive Theatre Ensemble. Prior to joining the faculty at UM, Jennifer was an instructor of voice, speech and acting at the Boston Conservatory and worked for many years in the Boston area as a director, vocal coach, and actor, performing at the New London Barn Playhouse, Boston Playwrights Theatre, and The Kennedy Center. Recent vocal coaching credits include Cherry Docs for the King’s Head Theatre in London, the award-winning New England premiere of David Hare’s Stuff Happens and Neil Simon’s Lost in Yonkers, a co-production of the Maltz Jupiter Theatre, The Cleveland Play House and the Paper Mill Playhouse.  She has conducted workshops and trained young actors at the Red House Arts Center in Syracuse, NY, the Barter Theatre in Abingdon, VA, Peking University in Beijing, China as well as in several high schools and theatre festivals. Jennifer holds a Bachelor of Arts in theatre from Bates College and a Master of Fine Arts in acting degree from Brandeis University. She is a Certified Associate Teacher of Fitzmaurice
Voicework and long-time member of the Voice and Speech Trainers Association.

Meghan Potter, Technical Director
Meghan has maintained an active career in the theater since her graduation from Armstrong Atlantic State University in 2004.  In addition to the Texas Shakespeare Festival, she has also worked for theatres in South Carolina, New York, Connecticut, and Georgia.   This is her second consecutive season with the Texas Shakespeare Festival after proudly serving as their Master Carpenter last summer.  After seven years in the field she has just finished her first year of Graduate School at Indiana University – Bloomington studying Technical Direction.

Nick Passafiume, Properties Supervisor
A native of Louisville, KY, Nick received his Master of Fine Arts degree in Scenic Design from Indiana University, with secondary emphases in Props and Scenic Painting.  At Indiana University he was the designer for Anything Goes, Rabbit Hole, Take Me Out, Blood Brothers, The Rockae, and The America Play.  He served as the props master for Brown County Playhouse’s 2009 season, and recently was a props artisan at Actor’s Theatre of Louisville for the 2012 Humana Festival.   He also was the designer for The Kentucky Shakespeare Festival’s spring touring production of Romeo and Juliet, and is excited to be designing Assassins at The Viaduct Theatre in Chicago this upcoming October.  Nick also relocated, for a period, to Southern California where he worked with a number of professional companies including HBO, NBC, Disney, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, and The Arizona Theatre Company.  This is Nick’s first season with TSF.

Chelsea Touchet, Master Electrician
Chelsea graduated from the University of Evansville in 2011 and has been pursuing her Master of Fine Arts degree in lighting design at the University of Houston. Recent design credits at the University of Houston include The Crucible and Our Lady of 121st Street. She also works as a freelance electrician in Houston, TX.  This is Chelsea’s second season with TSF.

Tiffany Towns, Head for Wardrobe
Tiffany Towns is honored to be returning to Kilgore for her third consecutive summer.  The tacos, heat, and good people keep bringing her back! In May, Tiffany graduated with her Master of Fine Arts degree in costume design from The University of Alabama where she designed shows such as Candide, Hair, and the Alabama premier of the one-act opera The Beautiful Bridegroom. Although a native of Georgia, Tiffany has traveled around working with companies such as Glimmerglass Opera, Seaside Music Theatre, and The Center for Puppetry Arts.

Laura Cheyne, Stage Manager

Laura Cheyne, after graduating from Viterbo University moved to Marshalltown, Iowa to work at the Orpheum Theater Center as the production stage manager as well as the event coordinator for the Jean Seberg International Film Festival. After the TSF 2012 season Laura will be attending University of Missouri, Kansas City as a stage management candidate for the graduating class of 2014. Laura grew up in Columbus, Georgia where she worked throughout middle and high school in theater. This is Laura’s third season with TSF.

Megan Barrett, Assistant Stage Manager
In May 2011, Megan graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in theatre from Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas. She now resides in Los Angeles, where she is pursuing a Master of Fine Arts degree in stage management at the California Institute of the Arts. Megan spent the past two summers as the Production Stage Manager at Jenny Wiley Theatre, where she stage managed Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Annie, and Cinderella. Other select credits include: The Rocky Horror Show, The Tempest, A Doll’s House, Antigone, and The Little Dog Laughed. This is Megan’s first season with TSF.

Andi Dema, Actor – Cliton
Andi Dema is an Albanian actor who holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting from Oklahoma City University. Favorite roles include Shylock in Merchant of Venice and Peter Quince in A Midsummer Night’s Dream with the Adirondack Shakespeare Company, Orlando in As You Like It and Clitandre in The Learned Ladies with the Texas Shakespeare Festival, Cassius in Julius Caesar and Joey Percival in Misalliance with Oklahoma Shakespeare in the Park, Jack Tanner in Man and Superman and Capt. Jack Absolute in The Rivals with Theatre OCU. This is Mr. Dema’s third season with TSF.


Nick Henderson, Actor – Alcippe
Nick Henderson “grew up” in St.Louis, but found his acting career (or rather, it found him) in Colorado.  Specializing in Shakespeare, musicals, and physical theatre, some of his favorite parts include: Conrad Birdie, Orlando, Captain Tempest, Kinickie, Bassanio, Gaston, Adonis, and Matt Hucklebee.  He performed Measure for Measure once before, as Claudio/Friar Peter, in 2010, at the Colorado Shakespeare Festival.  Recently, his production of Hairspray, in which he played Corny Collins, was awarded a number of Ovation Awards, including ‘Best Musical of the Year’.  He would like to thank all those who take chances, especially on him. “To win without risk is to triumph without glory.” -Pierre Corneille


Aaron Johnson, Actor – Geronte
Aaron Michael Johnson graduated from the University of Houston with a Bachelor of Arts degree in theatre in 1995, and is  currently seeking a Master of Fine Arts degree in directing from Texas State University where he recently directed Picasso at the Lapin Agile. He is the founding Artistic Director of the Austin Commedia Society, now called La Fenice Austin, and has produced such events as the Commedia dell’Austin Festival in 2001, and the 10th anniversary season of Playfest for the Austin Circle of Theatres in 2002. As an actor, Aaron has enjoyed a twenty year love affair with Commedia dell’Arte, performing the roles of the Ottavio, Brighella, Arlecchino, and Pantalone for I Arroganti, I Megalomani, and Les Immortales. However, Commedia is not his only love, and recently he was seen performing playing the part of of Simeonov-Pishchik in The Cherry Orchard at Texas State. This is Aaron’s first season with TSF.

Elizabeth Krane, Actor – Lucrece
Elizabeth Krane, after graduating from Fairfield University in 2007 worked in the New England theatre circuit for several years before beginning graduate school at Purdue University. She has just completed her second year in the Master of Fine Arts acting program and will be graduating in the spring of 2013. Recent roles include Annie Sullivan in the Miracle Worker and Elivra in Blithe Spirit. She is thrilled to be spending her first summer here at TSF!


Lea McKenna-Garcia, Actor – Clarice
Lea McKenna-Garcia is an actor, singer, and writer based in New York City.  Originally from New Jersey, Lea moved to New York to study acting at Marymount Manhattan College.  After graduation, she spent time acquainting herself with the off-off-Broadway theatre circuit before being accepted to London’s prestigious Central School of Speech and Drama.  After completing her Master of Arts degree, Lea returned to New York City, where she continues to live and work.  Favorite roles include Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing and Bolingbroke in Richard II.  Lea is also a regular contributor to the Green Room Blog, under the moniker of the “Reflective Artist.”

Michael Pine, Actor – Philiste
Michael is very pleased to be performing for the first time at The Texas Shakespeare Festival. Most recently he portrayed Demetrius in a production of Purcell’s The Fairy Queen in New York City. Favorite roles include Smudge in Forever Plaid, David in The Foreigner, Hines in The Pajama Game, and Goat in The Robber Bridegroom. When not performing, Michael loves a good game of Scrabble and fancies himself a decent ping pong player, although he fears, in this short time away from the table, his father has likely overtaken him once again.


Alice Sherman, Actor – Isabel/Sabine
Alice graduated from Columbia University in New York with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theatre and a minor in Opera Studies from the Manhattan School of Music. She has studied and worked in Shakespeare in London, Los Angeles and New York, as well as extensively studying and working in the Viewpoints technique with Tina Landau and La Mama Theatre Company in Umbria, Italy. She currently lives in Los Angeles where she works in film, television, theatre and musical theatre. Favorite roles include MiLady Dewinter in Three Musketeers, Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Malvolio in Twelfth Night.

Jared Van Heel, Actor – Dorante
Jared is thrilled to be joining TSF this summer. Past credits include extensive touring internationally, nationally, and regionally. Some other credits include: New York: Hamlet  and Awesome ’80′s Prom (off-Broadway), Twelfth Night (MadCap Collective), Devil in the Hole (Walking Taco). Regional: Antony and Cleopatra (Harlequin Prod.), Frankenstein (Trembling Stage), Frankenstein, Cyclone, The Trip to Bountiful, Betty’s Summer Vacation, and the world premiere of Breach (Montana Rep) and others. Jared grew up in Montana playing every sport available. He also plays a variety of instruments, loves to read, and falls in love with every dog he meets.


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