DANTE'S HOPE

Genre: Drama
Playwright: Harry Cornelius Cronin, Director: Peter John Cameron, O.P.

An adaptation of a medieval miracle story transposed to present day California in which the Blessed Virgin Mary (Our Lady of Guadalupe) contends with the devil (a mariachi band member) for the soul of a dead Mexican gang leader.

About the Company: Blackfriars Repertory Theatre

Blackfriars Repertory Theatre, an apostolate of the Dominican Friars of the Province of Saint Joseph , was founded in 1998 by Fr. Peter John Cameron, O.P., as a revival of Blackfriars Theatre (1940-1972)—the first professional religious theatre ever tried in New York City and the oldest continuous Off-Broadway theatre in American stage history. Blackfriars provided the proverbial great first break to several acclaimed theatre artists including playwright Robert Anderson, and actors Geraldine Page, Patricia Neal, Anthony Franciosa, Darren McGavin, and Shelley Berman. Like the original Blackfriars, Blackfriars Rep carries on the mission of “producing plays of artistic merit that reflect the spiritual nature of man and his eternal destiny.” In its ten years of existence, Blackfriars Repertory Theatre has staged over twenty productions in New York City, regionally, and on tour in its commitment to “theatre dedicated to the human drama.”

Open:   04/04/08
Close:   04/13/08

Schedule:
Fridays, April 4 & 11 at 8 pm
Saturdays, April 5 & 12 at 8 pm
Sundays, April 6 & 13 at 3 pm
Theater:   St. Joseph's Church - Greenwich Village
Address:   371 Sixth Avenue 2 blocks south of
New York, NY 10014
Google Maps
Cost:$10.00 no tickets—open seating
Company: Blackfriars Repertory Theatre         Official Web Site: www.blackfriarsrep.com
 
Jessica Angleskhan as La Virgen
Jessica was born in Texas but is at home in NYC, favorite roles include: Rosalind and Celia in As You Like It, Cassandra in The Oresteia, Cora in The Rimers of Eldritch, and Adela in The House of Bernarda Alba, among others. Attended the Stella Adler Studio through New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. Excited to be working in her first show with the Blackfriars Repertory Theatre. Thanks Father Peter for the fascinating journey. Thanks to Karim for being here with me, I love you. This one's for the abuelos.
 
Isaac Cruz as Dante
Isaac is a New York native trained classically at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy here in the city. Isaac has had the good fortune of being a founding member of the National Comedy Theatre located in midtown, touring the country with the National Theatre for Arts and Education, and guest starring on Law & Order: Criminal Intent. A special thanks goes out to all those that offer support and resources to dedicated artists, because they not only help the person, but the whole environment that is touched by the work of quality artistic endeavors. This will be my first experience with Blackfriars Repertory Theatre, but hopefully not the last. To all of those in our audience thank you, because you are my heart.
 
Maureen Dowdell as Mrs. Donaldson
Maureen returns for her fifth season with Blackfriars Repertory Theatre. Credits include Margaret O'Callahan/He Was Our Father, Mary Magdalene/The Women Who Served, Multiple Roles/Miguel Mañara. Screen roles include a recurring character, nurse Tracey Boggs, on the NBC/CBS television series In the Heat of the Night and numerous commercials. Maureen, a mezzo-soprano, performs with the New York Grand Opera Company. She is also a member of the vocal ensemble Schola Cantorum on Hudson, which will be touring Europe this summer. A summa cum laude/Phi Beta Kappa graduate of West Virginia University, Maureen earned dual degrees in Music and Journalism. She dedicates her performances to her niece Kristen, a medic serving in the armed forces in Iraq.
  Adam is a founding member of State of Play Theatre (SOP) and the Gateway Acting Company of the Chester Theater Company (CTC). NYC: SOP's critically acclaimed, The City That Cried Wolf, at 59E59 Theaters as Detective Jack B. Nimble. Regional: Defying Gravity (CTC) as Claude Monet, a tour of the world premiere of Michael Dowling's Random Acts (CTC) as Mark, and a New England tour of The City That Cried Wolf (SOP). The Gateway Acting Company received an award from the State of Massachusetts for the success of its educational outreach program modeled off of New York's 52nd Street Project. www.adamlafaci.com.
 
George Lugo as Padre Ignacio
George has been acting for 31 years. He last appeared on stage as Spuds Idaho in the play The Tangled Snarl. His film Surrender is being offered to various film festivals throughout the country. He has been acting with Blackfriars Repertory Theatre since 2002. He has starred as Pontius Pilate in The Living Silence and more recently as Dysmas in the King of Sorrows. He thanks Father Cameron and his beautiful wife, Stacy for their support. Peace.
 
Danielle Tolles as Gloria Salazar
Danielle's previous professional credits include two season's with Shakesperience Productions, where highlighted roles include Kate (Taming of the Shrew), Juliet (R&J), Helena (A Midsummer Night's Dream), Desdemona (Othello), and Shakespeare Instructor throughout CT. She holds a B.A. from Muhlenberg College where she appeared in numerous productions and penned two original plays, Stained and Moving On, that were presented as part of Muhlenberg's New Voices 2004 and 2005, respectively. Her other acting credits include 43 Plays for 43 Presidents (Theatre Outlet), Macbeth (Hudson Shakespeare), and the films, University Place and Citizen Jane.
 
Christopher Zorker as El Dioblo
Christopher who previously appeared in Blackfriars Repertory Theatre's production of Miguel Manara and a stage reading of King of Sorrows, is pleased to be returning. Most recent gigs include an offbeat, one-act musical Tentagatnet and a stage reading of Jimmy Breslin's newest play, both at La MaMa. Theatre: NYC - Mother Courage (The Public), Original Halloween Production (Ralph Lee's Metawee River Theatre Company), Why Hanna's Skirt Won't Stay Down, Seven Against Thebes (La MaMa e.t.c.), The Mother, The Misanthrope (Columbia University); Regional - Merchant of Venice, Dracula (Roxy Regional), Hamlet, R&G are Dead, Pericles, Taming ofthe Shrew, Dracula, Antigone (Cincinnati Shakes), Saint Joan, Henry V, Comedy of Errors (Shenadoah Shakes), Gross Indecency (Theatre in the Square), Dracula (Arkansas Repertory) TV: All My Children, Sopranos, Deadline.
 
Katherine Tamariz as Choral Leader
Katherine Tamariz is proud to be appearing in her third Blackfriars Repertory Theatre production. She was previously seen as one of the Weeping Women in Mother and Sister to Me and most memorably as the Adulterous Woman in The Women Who Served. Ms. Tamariz studied voice at the Crane School of Music and at the University of Ottawa where she sang in productions of Iolanthe, L'incoronazione di Poppea, Dialogues of the Carmelites, and sang the title role in L'Enfant et les Sortilèges. She was also a member of the opera chorus for Opera Lyra Ottawa's production of The Pearl Fishers. Ms. Tamariz currently serves as a cantor at Regina Pacis Church in Brooklyn, NY.
 
Janice Picconi as Choral Member
Janice is pleased to be making her Blackfriars Repertory Theatre debut! Off-Broadway: The Bird Machine (Concrete Temple Theatre), Message From Rhonda, Rhonda (Pride Not Prejudice), and is a leading company member of Once Upon a Time Children's Theatre. Regional/Collegiate: Beauty and The Beast, Belle (Carolina Theatre), A Christmas Spectacular!, Leading Alto (Centennial Station Dinner Theatre), You Can't Take it With You, Rheba (UNCG), Urinetown, Soupy Sue (UNCG). Janice proudly attended UNC-Greensboro for a BFA in Acting. She studied at the North Carolina School of the Arts Summer Intensive Acting program and also had a production assistant internship with the New York Classical Theatre.
 
Kelly Swartz as Choral Member
Kelly is a recent graduate of NYU's CAP21 studio where she received her BFA in Theatre. She has been performing since the age of four, appearing dancing, singing, and acting in theaters around the country. She has had the opportunity to play a wide range of characters from Sally in You're a Good Man Charlie Brown, to Annie in Chicago, to Cha-Cha in Grease, just to name a few. Kelly has also been seen in independent films, print, and dance shows including the 2006 MTVu Woodie Awards. Kelly would like to thank the Blackfriars Repertory Theatre for this wonderful opportunity to work with a gifted cast on an inspirational project.
  Father Cronin is a Priest of the Congregation of Holy Cross. (Note: not "the Holy Cross.") His first play was produced at the University of Notre Dame the year following his ordination. He has always been both a priest and a playwright. He was recipient of the James H. Mitchell Memorial Award for playwriting when he graduated from the University of Notre Dame. He received his MFA in drama at the Catholic University of America. He was awarded a McKnight Foundation Graduate Theater Fellowship at the Tyrone Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis and subsequently received his PhD in Theater Arts from the University of Minnesota. He served as playwright-in-residence and Director of Theater at the University of Portland. After being awarded a fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts, he was reassigned to Los Angeles where he became director of a theater project funded by the NEA. While in Los Angeles, he served as parish priest, high school chaplain and hospital chaplain. His plays produced in Los Angeles included Naomi, Skip and Reverend Garden produced by both the Burbage Theater Ensemble and the Theater of N.O.T.E. The Burghers of Calais and Fitzgerald and Hemingway were produced by the Ensemble Studio Theater. The Children of Hercules was performed by First Stage. His play about Christ, Memoirs of Jesus, was produced by the Matrix Theater in Los Angeles (following a special performance at the Trinity Repertory Theater in Providence) and was the recipient two Los Angeles Drama-Logue awards. The play was subsequently produced in Canada at the Calgary Center for the Arts. His recent productions have included Dooley, which enjoyed three separate runs in San Francisco; and Dark Matter, his play about a priest convicted of child abuse. He is currently Professor in Residence at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, where he teaches classes in religious drama and film.
  Father Cameron holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in playwriting from the Catholic University of America and is a member of the Dramatists Guild. His first play, Full of Grace, received the David Lloyd Kreeger Creativity Award and was performed in showcase at the Kennedy Center in 1988. Fr. Cameron wrote the script to the multiple award-winning video The Vocation to the Priesthood produced by the Knights of Columbus. Plays of his produced by Blackfriars Repertory Theatre include: The Sacrament of Memory, The Living Silence, The Dialogue of Destiny, The Drama of Light, The Women Who Served, Mother and Sister to Me, He Was Our Father, and The Stations of the Christ. Fr. Cameron is the editor-in-chief of MAGNIFICAT.
 
Mat Bussler Assistant Director
Mat appeared in King of Sorrows and stage-managed Miguel Mañara, both with Blackfriars Repertory Theatre. He has worked as an actor, director, stage manager, playwright, and production manager. He is a founding member of State of Play Theatre, for which he appeared in The City That Cried Wolf at 59E59 Theatres. Additionally, he has worked at the Public Theater, The Flea Theater, The Cherry Lane Theatre, The Here Arts Center, The Barrow Group Theatre, The Tank, Impact Theatre, and The Chester Theatre Company. He studied theatre production and acting at Sarah Lawrence College.
 
Brendan Barr Music Director
Brendan composed for the off-Broadway show The City That Cried Wolf (2007) and several short films including Penny (USC) 42711339 (Moondrop Studios, Ma). In 2007, he worked full time as a studio tech/assistant writer to film composer Richard Tuttobene in Los Angeles, CA. Brendan graduated from Berklee College of Music in 2006 with a major in Film Scoring. He would like to send love and thanks to his family for supporting as well as humoring him in all of his endeavors.
 
Catherine Kolpak Managing Producer
Catherine has been a part of Blackfriars Repertory Theatre for seven years. During that time she handled various administrative duties including producing, publicity, house management, playbill editing, and bookkeeping.
 
Thomas Dunlea Technical Director
Tom has been a part of Blackfriars Repertory Theatre for seven years.
 
Maureen Langdale Hough Costume Designer
Maureen is trained in historical reproduction clothing. She has enjoyed this opportunity to create for the modern voice in Dante's Hope. While a student at Princeton University, Maureen studied under Village Voice Obie Award winner, Anita Yavich. She also has participated in master classes with Allyson Long of Audubon Arts, New Haven. Most recently, she worked in wardrobe under Susan Gobel for the New Haven Ballet 2007 production of The Nutcracker.
 
Leta Tremblay Stage Manager
Leta is a recent graduate of Smith College where she earned a BA in Theatre with an emphasis on Stage Management and Directing. Trainings of note include a semester at the Eugene O'Neill National Theatre Institute and work with the Wooster Group and SITI Company. New York Directing credits include The City That Cried Wolf by Brooks Reeves at 59E59 Theaters; 365 Days/365 Plays by Suzan Lori-Parks with the FullStop Collective (founding member); and 10 Plates a new performance piece by ExPgirl at the HERE Arts Center (AD). New York Stage Management credits include Two Detectives by Dan Landon at Manhattan Reparatory Theater (SM), Killing the Boss by Catherine Filloux at the Cherry Lane Theatre (SM), The Blue Puppies Cycle by David Vining at The Chocolate Factory (SM), and Blind Mouth Singing by Jorge Cortiñas with the National Asian American Theatre Company (ASM). Regional credits include Machinal by Sophie Treadwell (Director), Dogeaters by Jessica Hagedorn (SM), and Paintbox Theatre written and directed by Tom McCabe (Company Stage Manger).