Woolly Mammoth began assembling a Company of artists in 1986, shortly after the theatre's establishment in Washington, DC. Artistic Director Howard Shalwitz sought out performers "committed to our culture of provocation," who embraced plays that took risks with both style and content. Woolly's Company, which now includes playwrights, directors, and designers, is a robust community of artists at the center of our investigation of new plays, from early script development and design concepts, through the community dialogue surrounding each production.
COLIN K. BILLS
Colin K. Bills has lit over forty-five productions at Woolly, including An Octoroon, Stupid Fucking Bird, The Convert, The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity, A Bright New Boise, Oedipus el Rey, Clybourne Park, and Dead Man’s Cell Phone. As a Conspirator with the devised theater company dog & pony dc, he has collaborated in the writing, direction and design of A Killing Game and Beertown, and has designed the sets and lighting for Courage and Punch…that’s the way we do it. His designs have been seen at Arena Stage, The Berkshire Theater Festival, CENTERSTAGE, Contemporary American Theater Festival, Dallas Theater Center, Everyman Theatre, Ford’s Theatre, Forum Theatre, Imagination Stage, Intiman Theatre, The Kennedy Center, Marin Theatre Company, Metro Stage, Olney Theatre Center, Opera Lafayette, Opéra Royal Versailles, Portland Center Stage, Round House Theatre, The Smithsonian, Signature Theatre, Studio Theatre, Synetic Theatre, Syracuse Stage, Theater J, The Washington Revels, The Wilma Theater, and the Williamstown Theatre Festival. Mr. Bills has won three Helen Hayes Awards and is a recipient of a Princess Grace Fellowship in Theater. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College.
Directing credits include American Night, Romeo and Juliet (Yale Repertory Theatre); The Unfortunates (Oregon Shakespeare Festival + A.C.T.), Love’s Labor’s Lost (Oregon Shakespeare Festival); Venus In Fur (Seattle Rep, Arizona Theatre Company), The Taming of the Shrew, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (California Shakespeare Theater); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Playmakers Rep); The Whale Play, Twelfth Night Parking Lot Project (New Theater House); The Ghost Sonata, Richard III (Yale School of Drama); Oklahoma (Hangar Theatre). Shana was the Associate Artistic Director of the California Shakespeare Theater (2000-2004), and also a Cofounder of New Theater House with Yale School of Drama alumni (2008-present). Awards include: 2014 TCG Leadership U Grant, 2010 Princess Grace Award, Julian Milton Kaufman Memorial Prize in Directing (Yale School of Drama), Drama League Directing Fellow, TCG Observership Grant, OSF Phil Killian Directing Fellow, G. Herbert Smith Presidential Scholarship. MFA, Yale School of Drama. Upcoming projects include HIR at Woolly Mammoth and Julius Caesar at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
A true D.C. native, Shannon made her Woolly debut earlier this year as Minnie in An Octoroon. DC credits include: All the Way (Arena Stage), the Helen Hayes Award-winning A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Carmen (Kennedy Center/Synetic Theater); Unexplored Interior (Mosaic Theater Company); Two Trains Running (Round House Theatre); Marcus; or the Secret of Sweet, In the Red or Brown Water, and Breath, Boom (Studio Theatre); Stick Fly (Everyman Theatre); and The Shipment (Forum Theatre). Regional credits include Safe House and The Trip to Bountiful (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park); A Raisin in the Sun (Perseverance Theatre); The Great MacDaddy (Negro Ensemble Company/Korner Theatricals); The Power of the Trinity (NYC SummerStage); and The Man Who Ate Michael Rockefeller (New York’s West End Theatre). Shannon received her B.A. in Communications, Theater and African-American studies at Temple University. She thanks God for the continued abundance of love and support from her family and friends.
JESSICA FRANCES DUKES
Jessica Frances Dukes has been seen at Woolly in Spoiler Alert: Everybody Dies (The Second City), Bootycandy, In the Next Room, Full Circle, Eclipsed, Fever/Dream, Antebellum, Starving, and Zombie: The American. Her most recent work include King Hedley II and Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike at (Arena Stage) other DC credits include: The Conference of The Birds (Folger Theatre); The Piano Lesson (Olney Theatre); Passing Strange and Caroline, or Change (Studio Theatre); Trip to Bountiful and Permanent Collection (Round House); Jitney (Ford's Theatre); Spunk (Tribute Productions, Helen Hayes nomination); The Bluest Eye and Insurrection: Holding History (Theater Alliance) and more. Regional credits include Beneatha's Place and Clybourne Park (Centerstage); Stick Fly (Arden Theatre); A Raisin in the Sun and The Piano Lesson (Geva Theatre); The Piano Lesson (Indiana Rep); Trip to Bountiful (Cleveland Playhouse) and more. Off-Broadway credits include Bootycandy (Playwrights Horizons). TV credits include The Good Wife (CBS) and A Raisin in the Sun Revisited (PBS). MFA from Catholic University of America.
Gabriela Fernandez-Coffey has appeared in The Nether, Detroit, Gruesome Playground Injuries, and Stunning at Woolly Mammoth. Recent area credits include Destiny of Desire at Arena Stage; Uncle Vanya at Round House Theatre; Mockingbird at the Kennedy Center; and Water by the Spoonful at Studio Theatre. She is a graduate of NYU's Tisch School of the Arts.
Rick Foucheux is a long-time Woolly company member. Among his memorable roles at Woolly are Sorn in Stupid Fucking Bird, Dad in Cooking With Elvis, and Gordon in the premiere of Dead Man's Cell Phone. Rick also appears frequently in theatres throughout the area. Recent productions include Freud's Last Session at Theater J, Mother Courage at Arena, and The Apple Family Plays at Studio. He received the Helen Hayes' Robert Prosky Award for his work in Glengarry Glen Ross at Roundhouse; and he was also nominated for his work in Stupid Fucking Bird. Rick will appear this fall in the Olney Theatre Center's revival of the Clifford Odets classic Awake and Sing.
MICHAEL JOHN GARCÉS
Michael John Garcés is the Artistic Director of Cornerstone Theater Company in Los Angeles, where he recently directed California: The Tempest by Alison Carey. He has directed Lights Rise on Grace by Chad Beckim, We Are Proud to Present… by Jackie Sibblies Drury, The Convert by Danai Gurira, Oedipus el Rey by Luis Alfaro, and two plays by Craig Wright, Grace and Recent Tragic Events. Other recent directing credits include The Body of an American by Dan O’Brien at the Wilma Theatre in Philadelphia and Wrestling Jerusalem by Aaron Davidman at Intersection for the Arts in San Fransisco and Playmakers Rep in Chapel Hill. Work presented in the Washington DC area in the past year includes red, black and GREEN: a blues by Marc Bamuthi Joseph at the Kennedy Center, and Placas by Paul Flores at Gala Hispanic Theatre.
Nataki is a Los Angeles based director, writer, producer and educator. She is the Associate Artistic Director of CalArts Center for New Performance (CNP) as well as the Associate Dean and the Co-Head of Undergraduate Acting for CalArts School of Theater. She is a recipient of the several awards including the MAP Grant and the NEA/TCG Career Development Program for Directors. Garrett is the co-Artistic Director of BLANK THE DOG PRODUCTIONS (BTD) a LA/NYC based ensemble Theater Company, which is celebrating its 10th year and is dedicated to developing and fostering new work by emerging, adventurous and experimental artists.
Nataki Garrett has directed across the United States, in Rwanda and Europe. She is a member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers. In addition to her freelance directing career she has worked as an arts administrator with more than 15 years in non-profit and arts education.
Tim Getman has appeared on Woolly's stage in The Unmentionables, Gruesome Playground Injuries, Detroit, Appropriate, Zombie: The American, and The Nether and will perform this season in Kiss. Tim has been seen in most theaters in the Washington/Baltimore area most recently in The Guard at Ford's, Outside Mullingar at Everyman, and Father Comes Home from the Wars at Round House. Television credits include: The District, VEEP, and The Men Who Built America. He holds a BA from Macalester College and Trinity College, Dublin.
Kimberly Gilbert has now been in the DC Theatre-verse for 15 years. She was last seen at Woolly in Women Laughing Alone With Salad and Marie Antoinette in the title role, for which she won a Helen Hayes for Lead Actress, Resident Production. Other Woolly shows include: Cooking With Elvis, Big Death Little Death, Martha Josie and the Chinese Elvis, The K of D, Measure For Pleasure, Boom, Fever/Dream, Clybourne Park, The Vibrator Play, A Bright New Boise, Mr. Burns, You for Me for You, and Stupid Fucking Bird. She has also played at Taffety Punk (company member), Round House, Theater J, Studio, Fords, Forum, Metrostage, The Folger, The Kennedy Center, Scena, and (ye olde) Source Theatre. She is a proud graduate of Shakespeare Theatre Company's Academy For Classical Acting, and has been a Woolly Company Member since 2006.
Naomi Jacobson has been a Woolly company member for years. Woolly credits include The Unmentionables, Vigils, Kvetch, Goodnight Desdemona – Good Morning, Juliet, Free Will & Wanton Lust (all Helen Hayes nominations), Dead Man’s Cell Phone (premiere), The Clean House, Full Circle, Heaven, Big Love, Psychic Life Of Savages, Dead Funny, Civilization (Or All You Can Eat), Patience, Maria Stuart, Strindberg in Hollywood, Life During Wartime, Raised in Captivity. Naomi works all over the DC area including Shakespeare Theatre Company (over 10 productions), Arena Stage, Ford’s Theatre, Round House Theatre, Folger Theatre, Signature Theatre, Wolf Trap Opera, Olney Theatre Center, The Kennedy Center as well as regionally at The Goodman Theatre (Chicago), Arizona Theatre Company, Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, Delaware Theatre Company, and the Berkshire Theatre Festival. Naomi’s received a 2009 Lunt Fontanne Fellowship, two Helen Hayes Awards, a dozen Helen Hayes nominations, an Individual Artist Grant from the DC Commission on the Arts, and an MFA from Temple University. She’s taught for many universities in the area, coaches Corporate Public Speaking and Voice Overs for NPR, Discovery Channel, The Smithsonian, as well as any TV and film that falls into her lap.
Misha Kachman has designed numerous Woolly productions including An Octoroon, Guards at the Taj, Women Laughing Alone With Salad, Zombie: The American, Marie Antoinette, Stupid Fucking Bird, The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity, Mr. Burns, A Bright New Boise, Gruesome Playground Injuries, and Fever/Dream. He has worked at Arena Stage, Center Stage, Signature Theatre, Syracuse Stage, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Round House Theatre, The Kennedy Center, Wilma Theater, Syracuse Stage, Maryland Opera Studio, Theater J, Opera Lafayette, Skylight Music Theatre, and Milwaukee Shakespeare, among many other companies. Misha is a recipient of the 2013 Helen Hayes Award for his design for The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity. Misha is a graduate of the St. Petersburg Theatre Arts Academy. He serves as the Associate Professor of Scene and Costume Design and Head of MFA in Design at University of Maryland.
Sarah Marshall has been teaching and performing in Washington, DC for 30 years. She has been a Company Member at Woolly Mammoth for over 20 years. Her Woolly credits include The Vampires, The Dead Monkey, Wanted, Spain, In the Blood, The Mineola Twins, The Clean House, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, Maria/Stuart, Boom, Full Circle, In the Next Room or The Vibrator Play, Civilization (all you can eat), Marie Antoinette, and Zombie: The American. Most recently she was seen at Ford’s Theater as Queen Victoria in The Widow Lincoln. In the fall she will perform at Studio Theatre in the 3rd and 4th plays of The Apple Family quartet. Sarah teaches acting at Georgetown University.
Jennnifer Mendenhall has been a Woolly Company Member since 1988; her Woolly shows include Cherokee, Clybourne Park, Measure for Pleasure, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, Grace, Lenny and Lou, Homebody/Kabul (with Theatre J), Cooking With Elvis, and The Day Room. Going way back, her first show with Woolly was Savage in Limbo, in which she got to kiss a toupee-wearing Howard Shalwitz. Aunt Dan and Lemon, The Vampires, Harvey, Luna Vista, the original Day Room, Zero Positive, Rocky Horror Show, David’s Redhaired Death, Strindberg in Hollywood, Goodnight Desdemona, The Gene Pool, and The Art Room followed. She also directed at Woolly: Wally Shawn’s The Fever (with Howard), and The Cockburn Rituals. Shows elsewhere include Forum: Angels in America; Arena Stage: Legacy of Light; Solas Nua: Woman and Scarecrow; Theatre J: Imagining Madoff, The Accident; Studio Theatre Second Stage: A Beautiful View and Crestfall, and on the mainstage: The New Electric Ballroom and Circle Mirror Transformation; Theater Alliance: Ambition Facing West, The Monument, You Are Here, Slaughter City; Humana Festival: dark play, or stories for boys…; Florida Stage: Cradle of Man. She has also appeared at The Kennedy Center, Shakespeare Theatre Company, and Metro Stage, among others. She has received the Washington Theatre Lobby Award and the Helen Hayes Award, and is a member of Actor’s Equity Association. She lives in Hyattsville with her husband, Michael Kramer, and their two children, Henry and Vivian.
Jared Mezzocchi is thrilled to be welcomed into the Woolly Mammoth family after designing The Nether (2016), Women Laughing Alone With Salad (2015), Totalitarians (2014), and The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity (2012). In 2013, he received a Princess Grace Award as the first projections designer to receive the honor. He designed productions in New York City with 3-Legged Dog (Downtown Loop, SpyGarbo), HereArts (You Are Dead. You Are Here.), Builders Association (Jet Lag), Rob Roth (Screen Test), Baryshnikov Arts Center (Robert Wilson’s On The Beach), and has toured nationally and internationally with Big Art Group (SOS, The Sleep, The People). Regionally, he has designed for Center Stage (Stones in his Pockets), Cleveland Playhouse (Breath and Imagination), Milwaukee Rep (History of Invulnerability, The Mountaintop), and in DC with Theater J (Yellowface, Race), and Studio (Astroboy and The God Of Comics). As a multimedia director, Jared has spent the last six years creating original work at Andy’s Summer Playhouse in Wilton NH (Donkey Xote, Dick Tracy, The Lost World, The BFG, Little Prince, The Block). Outside of theater, Jared co-designed with Guilio Cappellini for Design Week in Milan Italy, for Connect4Climate and Alcantara, and this year will design the entrance and immersive experience for a Surf Museum in Montauk, NY. Jared continues to teach Projection Design at the University of Maryland’s Theater, Dance, and Performance Studios program for graduate and undergraduate students.
His Woolly credits include Stupid Fucking Bird, Clybourne Park, In The Next Room, or the vibrator play. Regional: Gulfshore Playhouse: The Whipping Man, The Importance of Being Earnest, Blithe Spirit, ‘Art’, and God Of Carnage (Director). Folger Theatre: The Taming of the Shrew, Arcadia, The School for Scandal, Macbeth; Shakespeare Theatre Company: Romeo and Juliet. New York: NYFringe: Raps; The Mac Wellmann Festival: Sincerity Forever; The Cherry Lane Alternative: The Allegory of Painting. Other credits include Portland Center Stage: How To Disappear Completely and Never Be Found (US premiere), The Pillowman, Outrage (World Premiere), The Merchant of Venice; Two River Theater Company: Macbeth, The Underpants; Shakespeare Santa Cruz: The Playboy of the Western World, Much Ado About Nothing, King Lear, As You Like It, The Taming of the Shrew, The Tamer Tamed. Film and Television: That ’70s Show, All My Children, Celebrity Death Match, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, Dorian Blues. Training: Carnegie Mellon University, School of Drama, BFA. Cody is the Artistic Associate at Gulfshore Playhouse in Naples, FL. www.codynickell.com.
KATE EASTWOOD NORRIS
Kate Eastwood Norris' Woolly credits include Full Circle, Fever/Dream, She Stoops To Comedy (her second Helen Hayes Award), Big Love, and Bug. Kate has been seen in many DC area theatres, including the Folger Theatre, and has worked regionally all across the U.S., her favorite cities being Philadelphia and Santa Cruz. Visit Kate at www.kateeastwoodnorris.com.
JON HUDSON ODOM
Round House Theatre: Father Comes Home From the Wars: Parts 1, 2, & 3 Olney Theatre Center: Colossal (Helen Hayes nomination Outstanding Ensemble), Piano Lesson, and Hay Fever Forum: Passion Play (Helen Hayes nomination Outstanding Supporting Actor) Centerstage: Twelfth Night, Goodman Theatre: A Christmas Carol Rep Stage: Yellowman Fords Theatre: A Christmas Carol, Our Town Everyman Theatre: You Can’t Take It With You Studio Theatre: 2-2-Tango, Invisible Man(u/s) Keegan Theatre: A Few Good Men Theater Alliance: Reals, Imagination Stage: The BFG (Helen Hayes nomination Outstanding Ensemble), Constellation Theatre: The Ramayana, National Gallery of Art: Framed. Jon is an Artistic Associate at Olney Theatre Center and a member of The Ensemble at Forum. Education: University of North Carolina School of the Arts.
Robert O'Hara received the 2010 Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding New Play for Woolly Mammoth’s production of his Antebellum. He both wrote and directed Woolly’s acclaimed Bootycandy. He wrote and directed Insurrection: Holding History at the New York Shakespeare Festival; the piece received the Oppenheimer Award for Best New American Play. His plays, which also include Brave Brood, Good Breeding, and American Maul, have been produced around the world, and he has been awarded a Rockefeller Fellowship, TCG Extended Collaboration Grant, NEA/TCG Fellowship, a Van Lier Fellow at New Dramatists, the first Mark Taper Forum’s Sherwood Award, and the TANNE Award for Exceptional Body of Work. As a director, his work has been seen at the McCarter Theater, Magic Theater, CTG/Kirk Douglas Theater, Alliance Theater, Cit Theater, Primary Stages (OBIE Award), Yale Rep, American Conservatory Theater, The Goodman Theater, Guthrie Theater, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Edinburgh Fringe Fest, The Market Theater in Johannesburg, The Baxter Theater in Cape Town, The Culture Project, The Flea, Athenaeum Theater, and Philadelphia Theater Company. He has taught at UCSD, DePaul University, NYU, UI Chicago, and Tufts. He has written films for Martin Scorsese, Spike Lee, Jon Avnet, Richard Zanuck, HBO, ABC, Universal Pictures, Sony Pictures, New Line/Fine Line Cinema and Artisan Entertainment. He received his Directing MFA from Columbia University.
Last appeared at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company as Dido in An Octoroon; Quincy/Bart in Mr. Burns, A Post Electric Play; Sabrina in Lenny & Lou and Agent in The Mineola Twins. Other recent credits include, Woman in Falling Out of Time at Theater J and Hawa in, In Darfur for which she won the 2011 Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding Lead Actress. She has performed at The Kennedy Center, Round House Theatre, Theater Alliance, The Shakespeare Theatre Company, The African Continuum Theatre, Hangar Theatre, Everyman Theatre Company, Arden Theatre Company, Philadelphia Theatre Company, Pioneer Theater and more. Erika studied at The University of Maryland, College Park and The London Academy of Performing Arts. www.erikarose.com
Michael Russotto made his Woolly Mammoth debut in 1985, playing Albert, the lodger, in Metamorphosis. Since then, Michael has appeared in many other Woolly shows, such as The Marriage of Mr. Mississippi, The Pitchfork Disney, The Gene Pool, Wonder of the World, Fuddy Meers, Homebody/Kabul, The Day Room, Lenny and Lou, The Velvet Sky, The Faculty Room, Vigils (Helen Hayes Awards Nomination, Outstanding Ensemble), She Stoops to Comedy (Helen Hayes Awards Nomination, Outstanding Lead Actor/Ensemble), Full Circle, House of Gold, and A Bright New Boise. He appeared as Yvan in Signature Theatre’s production of Art. In the DC area, Michael has also performed at Arena Stage, The Folger Theatre, Olney Theatre Center, Theatre J, Rep Stage, Washington Stage Guild, Theatre Alliance, Metro Stage, Wayside Theatre, and Studio Theatre. He teaches acting and directing at The Theatre Lab, and is a long-time, award-winning narrator of recorded books for the Library of Congress and several commercial companies.
Ivania Stack is proud to be a Woolly Mammoth Company member, where has designed several productions including: Zombie: The American, Lights Rise on Grace, Boom, Full Circle, Bright New Boise, Detroit, The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity (co-design w/ Misha Kachman), and Oedipus El Rey (associate design). Ivania also designs at several DC and Baltimore theatres including: Center Stage, Everyman Theatre, The Contemporary American Theatre Festival, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Round House Theatre, Olney Theatre Center (Associate Artist), Studio Theatre, Theatre J, Synetic Theatre, Forum Theatre, Rorschach Theatre, Theatre Alliance, Metro Stage, and Gala Hispanic Theatre. She is a Ring Leader (Artistic Director) for dog & pony dc, where she facilitates the creation of innovative, immersive, ensemble-devised performances. Ivania has an MFA in design from the University of Maryland, College Park.
Emily Townley has performed in The Totalitarians, Detroit, A Bright New Boise, House of Gold, Maria/Stuart, Spain, Fuddy Meers, Wonder of the World, and Watbanaland. Other local performances include Studio Theatre: Skin Tight (Elizabeth), Rock n' Roll (Candida), and A Bright and Bold Design (Joyce); Round House Theatre: The Sisterhood (Martine); Everyman Theatre: Our Town (Mrs. Gibbs); Rep Stage: The Goat, or Who is Sylvia? (Stevie); MetroStage: The Real Inspector Hound (Cynthia); The Washington Stage Guild: Tryst (Adelaide); Folger Theatre: The Tempest (Ariel) and The Gaming Table (Alpiew). She spent 3 months in Naples, Florida where she appeared in productions of The Game's Afoot and All My Sons for Gulfshore Playhouse. She has appeared in multiple productions for the Source Theatre, Freedom Stage, and the Kennedy Center, and can be seen in many commercials, industrials, and independent films.
Born in Moscow, Russia, Yury graduated from the Russian Academy of Theater Art (GITIS) in 2000, and has directed over 40 productions in his home country, Europe, and Africa. He was one of the first to discover and direct plays by the generation of post-Soviet playwrights, who are now internationally recognized as the leaders of the New Russian Drama movement. Yury translated plays of Martin McDonagh, Sarah Ruhl, and Edward Albee into Russian, as well as a number of contemporary Russian plays into English. Since 2002, he has worked closely with the Center for International Theater Development (dir. Philip Arnoult) on a number of Russia – US cultural projects. In 2009-2011 he was a Fulbright Scholar in Residence at Towson University, MD. His recent directing credits in the US include Ubu Roi at Cutting Ball Theater in San Francisco, and You for Me for You and Marie Antoinette at Woolly Mammoth.
Dawn Ursula was seen at Woolly in Zombie: The American, The Totalitarians, and as Black Woman/Actor 6 in We Are Proud to Present... by Jackie Sibblies Drury directed by Michael John Garcés who also directed her as Prudence in The Convert by Danai Gurira, for which she received a 2014 Helen Hayes Award. She just finished playing the title role in By the Way, Meet Vera Stark by Lynn Nottage directed by Walter Dallas at Everyman Theatre where she is also a company member. This season she also appeared as Desiree in Love in Afghanistan by Charles Randolph Wright at Arena Stage, directed by Lucie Tiberghien. She earned a 2011 Helen Hayes nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actress and Ensemble in Bruce Norris’ Clybourne Park, directed by Howard Shalwitz, and the 2011 Baltimore City Paper Best Actress Award for Ruth in Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun, directed by Jennifer Nelson. Dawn has performed locally and regionally with theatres such as Hangar, True Colors, the Kennedy Center, Rep Stage, Imagination Stage, Round House Theatre, and African Continuum Theater Company. Television credits include HBO’s The Wire and PBS’ Prince Among Slaves. She is a founding member of Galvanize. For more information please visit www.dawnursula.com.
John Vreeke has directed for Woolly for the past fifteen years. His assignments include, but are not limited to, Rajiv Joseph's Gruesome Playground Injuries and Guards at the Taj, Lisa D'Amour's Detroit and Cherokee, Kris Diaz’s The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Diety, which received nine Helen Hayes nominations, Tony Kushner’s Homebody/Kabul, and Sam Hunter’s A Bright New Boise. He is a six-time Helen Hayes Nominee for Best Director. John also directed Tony Kushner’s epic play The Intelligent Homosexuals Guide to Socialism and Capitalism with a Key to the Scriptures for Theater j, and, for the Round House Theater, Nicki Silver’s The Lyons and Annie Baker’s Uncle Vanya. He is a regular director at Metro Stage with award winning shows such as Stoppard’s Heroes, and he directed Stephen Adley Gurigi’s The Last Days of Judas Iscariot twice for Forum Theater. Directing credits at other DC area theaters include: Washington Shakespeare Company, Everyman Theatre, Olney Theatre Center,. Source Festival, Charter Theatre, Theater Alliance, Kennedy Center TYA, Imagination Stage, and the Helen Hayes Awards Ceremony. He started his professional work as a director decades ago with Nina Vance at the Alley Theatre. He worked with the Arkansas Repertory Theatre, Attic Theatre in LA, Salt Lake Acting Company, and First Stage in Milwaukee. He was the Associate Producer and Casting Associate for the CBS TV Series: Northern Exposure.
Michael Willis has been a Woolly Company Member for over 25 years, making his debut in America Hurrah!, and then with the original company in its’ breakthrough year, 1986, when he appeared in NY Mets and Things That Go Bump in the Night. He has subsequently performed in dozens of Woolly plays including Full Circle, Fever/Dream, Current Nobody, Faculty Room, Grace, Patience, Sharon and Billy, Mud People, Strindberg in Hollywood, and A Bright New Boise. Michael has also appeared at The Folger Theatre, Round House Theatre, Arena Stage, Theatre of the First Amendment, and The New Playwrights Theatre. Nominated for five Helen Hayes Awards, he received the Outstanding Lead Actor for The Boys Next Door at Round House Theatre. Michael has appeared in a score of feature films including Excuse Me for Living, Coming Up Roses, Pushing Tin, Men in Black, Tin Men, and Just the Ticket. His television appearances include recurring roles on HBO’s The Wire and Homicide; Life on the Streets. He has appeared in 4 episodes of Law & Order, and on Law and Order SVU, Mercy, The Bronx is Burning, and NY Undercover among others. Mr. Willis is grateful to his wonderful and loving family, wife Lori, and their (grown) children Mike Jr., Amy, and Rebecca for the unconditional support and tolerance they have offered over the years as he has pursued his muse.
- Grainne Cassidy (1962-1997)
- Daniel Escobar (1964-2013)
- Grover Gardner
- Mitchell Hébert
- Jason Kravits
- Christopher Lane
- Namu Lwanga
- Bruce Randolph Nelson
- Nancy Robinette
- Rob Leo Roy
- Rhea Seehorn
- Eric Sutton