The 36th Annual William Inge Theatre Festival
welcomed these outstanding guest artists


Honoree:

Beth Henley

New Voices Award Winner:

Lauren Gunderson

Guest Artists:

Forrest Attaway is the Artistic Director of Kokopelli Theatre Company. Former Artistic Director of Stage Left Productions in the Northwest, Forrest began his professional career under the tutelage of Dr. Jo Ann McDowell, one of the founders of the William Inge Festival. Forrest performed in several far flung conferences across the country, working with and learning from the most respected and revered minds in the American Theatre. Forrest has worked in over thirty cities across the United States as an actor, playwright and director and is currently charged with producing the William Inge inaugural play lab for it’s thirty fifth anniversary. Forrest, a graduate of Texas A&M- Commerce, moved to Kansas City in 2011 where he met his wife Amy, and never left. Forrest says “It’s great to be back in the conference/festival system, it’s programs like this that do so much for not only emerging artist but recharges the batteries of more established professionals” Some of the luminaries that Forrest has worked with are, August Wilson, Arthur Kopit, Emily Mann, Edward Albee, John Guare, Romulus Linney, Terrence McNally, Joe Chaikin among other gifted and talented playwrights and directors.

Beaufield Berry-Fisher is a founding member and former executive director of FireBelly Rep, a playwright driven theater collective that serves the vision of the writer first and foremost. Beaufield is the recipient of the 2016 Nebraska Arts Council distinguished IAF award. Her work has been staged across the nation, THE WAITING LINE (2011) debuted at Manhattan Repertory Theater.  She’s an alumni of the Philadelphia Spark Fest, Great Plains Theater Conference, NYC Fringe, and the William Inge Festival. A Disney Musicals in Schools Teaching Artist, Beau helped launch the flagship program in 2016 offering undeserved school districts outlets in Musical Theater. Beau is also a journalist for American Theater Magazine, collecting stories across the Midwest’s growing theater scene, and a novelist. Childhood Friends, her novel debuted this year. Her latest play, IN THE UPPER ROOM, can be seen this later this spring at GPTC in Omaha.

Catherine Butterfield - Produced plays: LIFE EXPECTANCY, IT HAS TO BE YOU, BROWNSTONE, THE SLEEPER, JOINED AT THE HEAD, WHERE THE TRUTH LIES, SNOWING AT DELPHI, LIFE IN THE TREES, JOHN'S HAND. Awards: George E. Oppenheimer/New York Newsday Award, Kennedy Center-American Express award, Kaufman & Hart Award for New American Comedy (THE SLEEPER), Davie Award for New Play in Regional Theatre (LIFE IN THE TREES) 1994 William Inge New Voices Award. JOINED AT THE HEAD nominated for a Drama Desk award, included in "Best Plays of 1992”. Commissions: Manhattan Theatre Club and Laguna Playhouse. With Ron West: FUN AND OTHER TRAUMATIC EVENTS, an adaptation of Anthony Trollope's THE WAY WE LIVE NOW. TV: Grimm, Ghost Whisperer, FAME LA, Party of Five.

Bostin Christopher has been telling stories for over 25 years as a director,actor, producer, administrator, and educator. He has been attending the Last Frontier Frontier Conference since its early years and for three years was the coordinator of their Fringe Festival. Additionally, he has served as a guest artist and workshop leader at Great Plains Theatre Conference (GPTC) and the William Inge Center for the Arts. He has worked on new plays with NYSF/Public Theatre’s New Work Now!, Manhattan Theatre Club, Theatre for the New City, Moving Arts, Perseverance Theatre, Northwest Playwrights Alliance, and Seattle Rep. Acting credits include new plays Off-Broadway (KIT MARLOWE, ICE ISLAND) and film work including UnbreakableOtisScorpion King 3, and In My Pocket. Bostin holds the position of Senior Acting Teacher at Virginia Commonwealth University.  

Connie Congdon has been called "one of the best playwrights our country and our language has ever produced" by playwright Tony Kushner, in Kushner's introduction to her collection Tales of the Lost Formicans and Other Plays. In addition to Tales of the Lost Formicans, which has had more than 200 productions world-wide, plays include CASANOVA and DOG OPERA, both produced at the Public Theatre; LOSING FATHER'S BODY,(Portland Stage, Maine); LIPS, (Primary Stages); and NATIVE AMERICAN, (Portland Stage, Maine), (Lyric Hammersmith Studio). Her latest play, PARADISE STREET, is being developed at New York Theatre Workshop. A MOTHER, starring Olympia Dukakis, and a new verse version of THE MISANTHROPE, are both commissioned and produced by American Conservatory Theater. MOONTEL SIX, was commissioned by the A.C.T. Young Conservatory and subsequently performed at London's National Theatre, followed by another production of the two-act version at San Francisco's Zeum, directed by Young Conservatory Director, Craig Slaight. THE AUTOMATA PIETÀ, another YC commission, received its world premiere at San Francisco's Magic Theatre in 2002; NIGHTINGALES went to the Theatre Royale Bath's Youth Theatre. Ms. Congdon's NO MERCY, and its companion piece, ONE DAY EARLIER, were part of the 2000 season devoted to Ms. Congdon at the Profile Theatre. She has also written a number of opera libretti and seven plays for the Children's Theatre Company of Minneapolis. Ms. Congdon's plays have been produced throughout the world, including Cairo and Berlin. She's been writing a long time and can thank the NEA, the Rockefeller Foundation, the W. Alton Jones Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Arnold Weisberger Award, the Berilla Kerr Award, and, most recently, The Helen Merrill Award for making this more possible. She's an alum of New Dramatists, member of The Dramatists Guild, and of PEN. Ms. Congdon has been teaching playwriting at Amherst College for eleven years.

Ben Corbett is the Voice and Acting Instructor at the Inge Center.  He is a Designated Linklater Voice Teacher (Shakespeare & Co. '12).  His professional acting credits include two-and-a-half years as a resident actor at Barter Theatre, with additional roles at the William Inge Theatre Festival, City Rep, Blowing Rock Stage Co., Burning Coal Theatre Co., Light Opera Oklahoma, Shakespeare & Co., North Carolina Shakespeare Festival, Three Rivers Shakespeare Festival, and Shakespeare Festival of Dallas. He serves as both an actor and voice teacher at the Last Frontier Theatre Festival.  He's is a proud member of Actor’s Equity, and an Associate Editor for Oklahoma for the International Dialects of English Archive. He has launched his own voice practice, BenCorbettVoice.com, and welcomes private clients who wish to explore the possibility and power of their speaking voices.

Mia Dillon made her Broadway debut in Hugh Leonard's DA.  She was nominated for the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play for ONCE A CATHOLIC, and the Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play for CRIMES OF THE HEART.  Her other theater credits include AGNES OF GOD, THE CORN IS GREEN, HAY FEVER, COME BACK LITTLE SHEBA, THREE SISTERS, and OUR TOWN. On television, Dillon was featured in Mary and Rhoda and has appeared in all three current shows in the Law and Order franchise.  Her screen credits include The Money Pit, A Shock to the System, Gods and Generals,  and Duane Hopwood.  Dillon is married to actor Keir Dullea.

Keir Dullea is best known for the character of astronaut David Bowman, whom he portrayed in 2001: A Space Odyssey, and in 2010: The Year We Make Contact. He appeared in films such as The Thin Red Line, and Bunny Lake is Missing, which co-starred Laurence Olivier and Noel Coward. He appeared in the title role, playing the Marquis de Sade, with John Huston in the movie De Sade; and in cult favorite, Black Christmas. Dullea played a US Senator and mentor to Matt Damon's character in De Niro's film The Good ShepherdDullea was a regular vocal performer on CBS Radio Mystery Theater, which ran from 1974 to 1982. Dullea has also had a long and successful career on stage in New York City and in regional theaters. His first Broadway appearance was in DR. COOK'S GARDEN with Burl Ives. He also starred in BUTTERFLIES ARE FREE with Eileen Heckart and Blythe Danner. In 1974, he played Brick in CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF. He also starred in the 1975 Broadway play, P.S. YOUR CAT IS DEAD! More recently, Dullea performed the role of Tom Garrison in the off-Broadway production of I NEVER SANG FOR MY FATHER by Robert Anderson; and the role of Heinrich Mann in the Guthrie Theater production of TALES FROM HOLLYWOODby Christopher Hampton; and starred as Big Daddy in CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF, playing opposite wife Mia Dillon in a joint production for Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater and Provincetown Tennessee Williams Theater Festival.

Terri Garber is best known for her roles in television shows like Dynasty, North & South trilogy and As The World Turns, to name a few. She studied at the  American Academy of Dramatic Arts. Also with Janet Alhanti-The Meisner Technique and Iris Klein -The Meisner Technique. She is married to director William Roudebush and has a daughter that is currently on Broadway in WAITRESS. Terri is happy to be here, especially since we're honoring Beth Henley, whose work she's admired for many years - ever since she did a scene from CRIMES OF THE HEART for class.  

Laura Gardner appeared on Broadway in SMILE. She was nominated for Best Supporting Actress by the LA Weekly for her performance in FIGHTING WORDS, which opened at the Celtic Arts Center in Los Angeles and then transferred to the Millennium Center in Wales. Her Off-Broadway credits include THE COCKTAIL HOUR, OTHER PEOPLE'S MONEY,  and WELDED, directed by Jose Quintero. National tours: SHOWBOAT, DOONESBURY, OLIVER,  and MY FAIR LADY. Regional credits: Arena Stage, Huntington Theatre, Cleveland Playhouse, McCarter Theatre, and the North Carolina Shakespeare Festival. LA credits: The Road Theatre, Rogue Machine, Pasadena Playhouse, Will Geer Botanicum,Tiffany Theatre, Fountain Theatre, Deaf West, and Sacred Fools. TV and film credits include Outcast, Doubt, Scandal, Fresh Off the BoatCriminal Minds, Castle, Law and Order, LA, ER and The West Wing.  Laura and her husband, Frank Collison, recurred on the NBC hit My Name is Earl. Laura trained at Boston University, Rutgers, and HB Studio, where she studied with Uta Hagen, Carol Rosenfeld, and Ken McMillan. She has been on the faculty of The Howard Fine Acting Studio for over 18 years. She has been a Featured Artist for 10 years at The Last Frontier Theatre Conference. She is a guest teacher in New Mexico and teaches her 'Authenticity Workshop' across the country. She was awarded the Media Access Award for her over 20 years of teaching actors with disability. www.lauragardner.org

Chuma Gault is an actor and director with deep ties to the Inge Center. In 2011 he came to Independence as part of the first cast to develop EM Lewis' new play MAGELLANICA, which is set to have its world premier this season at Artists Repertory Theater in Portland, OR. Since then he has been back to Kansas as a guest artist/director for the Arthur Kopit Tribute and the Inge Festival's 35th year where he starred in the 50th anniversary production of WHERE'S DADDY? by William Inge. Acting awards: Los Angeles Stage Raw Awards for THE GUN SHOW (EM Lewis) outstanding solo performance nomination (2015); LA WEEKLY Awards nominee for FREEDOM SUMMER (Fountain Theater); and TREE (EST-LA) which also garnered a LA Drama Critics Circle nomination for Best male performance. Film credits: Chuma plays Nina Simone's husband Andrew in the recently released biopic Nina. TV: Chuma recently starred in Game of Silence (NBC). Directing credits include: PHENOM (Charlayne Woodard) at La Jolla Playhouse; upcoming THE GUARD WILL ESCORT YOU TO RUFF-RUFF (Carole Real) at Ensemble Studio Theater-Los Angeles. Recent Commercials: Amica, Lowes, and Edward Jones. Chuma wants to give a special thank you to Karen Carpenter, the awesome Inge staff, and Cyndy & Grant Sherwood. Social Media contact: @ChumaGault; @Bigtimeoperator; Facebook.com/chumagault 

Jason Hale is an American actor, international theater director, and professor of theater. He is the Chair of the Theater Department at Bilkent University - Faculty of Music and Performing Arts in Ankara, Turkey. Hale spent over a decade working as a professional actor, performing at many New York and regional ensemble theaters and acting in several independent and feature films, but he is better known for directing and teaching Method based acting and Viola Spolin improvisation, guided by a nearly two-decade association with John Uecker, George Morrison, Mike Nichols, and Paul Sills, the renowned theater director, theater pioneer, and son of Viola Spolin. In addition to directing many plays in the US, he directed the award-winning 2011 production of Tennessee Williams' THE GLASS MENAGERIE (Sirca Kumes) at the National Turkish State Theater in Ankara, Turkey. The production toured Turkey for two years and was selected to perform at the International Sabancī Theater Festival in Adana and Instanbul, Turkey and at the Cyprus International Theatre Festival. Hale recently directed the 2016 production of Sam Shepard's FOOL FOR LOVE in Ankara, Turkey at Tatbikat Sahnesi starring Burcu Ozberk.

Esquire Jauchem - was the founder of the Boston Repertory Theater, Associate Director (with Sarah Caldwell) of the Opera in Boston, and co-founded Broadway’s Jauchem & Meeh Special effects. He was worked as a Producer, Writer, Director, and Designer (lighting, sets, and costumes) and produced over 1,000 episodes of TV (nominated for three Emmy’s). He wrote and directed the Inge tributes to Paula Vogel, Marsha Norman and David Henry Hwang. For 20 years Esquire has designed camps and structures for the famed Burning Man Festival. He recently directed his first movie Bondage, based on a play by D. H. Hwang that has won awards around the world and is currently writing a play and movie: THE MADWOMAN OF VENICE BEACH.

Hannah Joyce-Hoven - is a theater artist, the ultimate playwright fangirl, and the Director of Membership at the Playwrights' Center. Prior to that she was the Director of Operations at the William Inge Center for the Arts. She serves on the board of the William Inge Festival Foundation. Originally from St. Louis, she has worked with a number of theater companies there, including the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis. Her training includes a BA in theatre from Wheaton College, Lincoln Center Education teaching artist certification, and Yoga teacher training. She is mother to two transcendant daughters, a singer, yogi, and cyclist.

David Karl Lee - is a Writer, Director and Performer. He will be directing The Otis Guernsey New Voices Award Winner Lauren Gunderson’s play ADA AND THE ENGINE, as well as appearing in the Beth Henley play REVELERS, and serving as a responder for the Play Lab. His play O-TOWN Voices from Orlando will be presented as part of this year’s PLAY LAB and will have its World Premiere this May at The Orlando International Fringe Festival where he received The Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016. David is a graduate of The University of Miami and The Yale School of Drama.

Sarah McCarron - is an actor, writer, and teacher, with an MFA in Actor Created Physical Theatre from the London International School of the Performing Arts, in the pedagogy of Jacques Lecoq. She has developed new plays in both Europe and the United States, including with Obie Award-winning Pig Iron Theatre Company. She is a Leeway Art and Change grant recipient and a member of Ensemble Studio Theatre Los Angeles. She wrote for David Milch on the HBO series Luck. Her drama series, Bunkered, was selected as a finalist for the 2016 Sundance Episodic Storytelling Lab.

Monica McCarthy - is honored to return to the Inge Festival as both an actor and as a playwright of her first play, TO GRANDMOTHER'S HOUSE. Monica has performed on Broadway and on screen (opposite actresses Kate Winslet, Laura Linney, Alicia Silverstone, and Anna Gunn), as well as in Europe and Japan. Her passion for meaningful dialogues and practical philosophy led to a career facilitating conversations ranging from monthly philosophical dinner salons, to activist initiatives, to James Lipton Inside The Actor’s Studio-style fireside chats with best-selling authors, artists, leaders, and innovators. MonicaMcCarthy.net

William Roudebush - is an award winning theatre artist having directed regionally for over 35 years at such theatres as The Cleveland Play House, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Walnut Street Theatre, Delaware Theatre Company, and many others. Currently he resides in New York with his wife, actress Terri Garber, where he is a member of the Playwright/Director Unit at the iconic ACTORS STUDIO where his focus is developing new plays and musicals. His book ACTING BY MISTAKE is available on line at xlibris.com, Amazon or in select book stores.


Justin Scheuer
- is the artistic director of The Classical Edge Theatre Co in Arkansas for which he's played Cassius in JULIUS CAESAR and Benedict in MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING. His original play MASHA'S SEAGULL opened the Berkshire Theatre Festival's 2015 season. Some of his favorite roles have been FULLY COMMITTED at the Walton Arts Center and Victor Fleming in MOONLIGHT AND MAGNOLIAS with TheatreSquared. He is the Fine Arts Chair and teaches theatre at Bentonville High School.


Doug Spesert
returns to the Inge Festival for the eighth time having costumed the tributes to Arthur Kopit, the 100th birthday of William Inge as well as the production of Bus Stop. In 2012 he costumed the tribute to David Henry Hwang, and in 2011 he did the costumes for the premiere of a new musical based on Moliere’s A Doctor In Spite Of Himself by Sheldon Harnick (Fiddler on the Roof), as well as the tribute to honoree Marsha Norman. In 2008 he costumed a full production of William Inge’s Picnic and assisted with the tribute to honoree Christopher Durang. Spesert has designed many shows for the Los Angeles theater scene over the past 35 years. Among his dozens of credits include the Southern California premiere of Assassins for Los Angeles Repertory Company; he costumed the original production of Lyle Kessler’s Orphans At The Matrix (for which he received a Drama-Logue award), and was nominated in 1994 for an Ovation award for his work on LA Rep’s Misalliance.  Doug is also the founder and former owner of Make Believe, Inc., a Santa Monica-based costume company with numerous film, theatrical and promotional credits. He now teaches fashion history at the Academy of Couture Art in Los Angeles.

Catherine Treischmann's plays include CROOKED, HOW THE WORLD BEGAN, HOT GEORGIA SUNDAY, THE MOST DESERVING, HOLY LAUGHTER, ONE HOUSE OVER and OZ 2.5. They have been produced Off-Broadway at the Women’s Project Theater, in London at the Bush Theater and with Out-of-Joint at the Arcola Theatre, South Coast Repertory, the Denver Theater Center for Performing Arts, Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Penguin Repertory Theater, Florida Stage, Rivendell Theatre Ensemble, among others. She has received commissions from South Coast Repertory, Manhattan Theater Club, Denver Center for Performing Arts and Milwaukee Repertory Theater. She’s the recipient of the Weissberger Award, the Edgerton New Play prize and the Otis Guernsey New Voices Award from the Willian Inge Playwriting Festival. Her plays are published by Samuel French in the U.S. and Methuen in the U.K. Originally from Athens, GA, she currently lives in a small town in Western Kansas. You can read her popular column on “Parenting and Playwriting” at www.howlround.com/parenting-and-playwriting.

Alice Tuanis the author of HIT, which premiered at Los Angeles Theater Center in May 2014. Her most recent plays concern Americans in Shanghai: COCKS CROW, a business play, as well as PRIVATE RIVALS, a commission of Yale Rep/Binger Center for New Theater. Tuan is best known for AJAX (por nobody), Flea Theater, Salvage Vanguard, Melbourne Fringe. This play, along with three other Tuan works, are archived in the Billy Rose Collection at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. Other plays include BATCH: An American Bachelor/ette Party Spectacle (Humana Festival), LAST OF THE SUNS (Berkeley Rep, Ma-Yi Theater), THE ROARING GIRLE, (Foundry Theater), IKEBANA (East West Players/Taper, Too, Dramalogue Award), and COASTLINE (Serious Play!, Edinburgh Fringe). Ms. Tuan received both the Sherwood Award and the Colbert Award for Excellence as an emerging playwright in 2000. She was also a TCG/Resident Playwright at East West Players. Ms. Tuan has taught playwriting at The Michener Center, CalArts and East West players. She is currently working on the Two Cities Project with UCLA (Los Angeles) and LAMDA (London). Before she was a playwright, Tuan taught English as a Second Language in China and Los Angeles.

Ralph F. Voss is Emeritus Professor of English at the University of Alabama. He is the author of A Life of William Inge and Truman Capote and the Legacy of 'In Cold Blood' and numerous articles on American literature and drama. Voss is also the editor of Magical Muse: Millennial Essays on Tennessee Williams. He is author of Elements of Practical Writing and co-author of The Heath Guide to College Writing and many articles in the field of rhetoric/composition. In the long history of Inge Festivals, Voss has missed only two.