Minnesota’s festival of performing arts
August 1–11, 2013 / Minneapolis

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Theatre 101

Comedy /

By ABTech Midwest

Directed by Derek Duck Washington

Ever think that four years is awfully long to get a theater degree? Is less than 60 minutes better? Sign up for Theatre 101: From the Dawn of Time to The Day Before Yesterday. Class is in session August 1st!

Opera/New Music, Shakespeare adaptation, Literary adaptation

First-time Minnesota Fringe Festival producer, Includes artists of color

Just so you know, this show has Adult language, Loud noises/gunshots.

The creators say this show is appropriate for ages 16 and up.

Thursday, 8/1 5:30 p.m.
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Saturday, 8/3 1:00 p.m.
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Monday, 8/5 8:30 p.m.
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Thursday, 8/8 7:00 p.m.
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Saturday, 8/10 2:30 p.m.
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Theatre in the Round

245 Cedar Ave.

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Audience reviews

Funny & Entertaining

By Jack Silverman / August 15, 2013
This user has reviewed 10 shows

I liked the premise of this show as it followed a historical sequence of theater through time. Some of the vignettes were better than others, especially liked the musical theater bit. I would recommend this show for its entertainment value but it wasn't my favorite.

Clever and Well Executed

By Gregory Ng / August 10, 2013
This user has reviewed 8 shows

This show had a very clever concept and it was executed well. The group of actors were all very talented doing a variety of characters and accents. I do agree that you need to be in theater to know some of the references, but there are plenty of jokes for everyone. The "When Things Go Wrong" section was the best part. It definitely produced non-stop laughter from the audience. Some of the jokes fell flat but overall, it was worth my time.

Schoolhouse Raucous

By Fringivitis Vulgaris / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 33 shows

This course breezes through the history of Western theater, pausing only to laugh at all the overly studied markers along the way. It is so snarky and so spoofy, and yet it WORKS because these people know and love the theatrical elements they are skewering thoroughly. Cast includes some fine singers, which is a relief when they cover musical theater. Beware of scene stealers and all of the things that go wrong!

Hit or Miss

By Ryan Vanasse / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 10 shows

"Aren't old plays funny?" this show asks. Yes, they are, and there are definitely some funny bits in this collection of short sketches, but it also felt like you had to be inside baseball to get the most enjoyment out of them. It was also odd to me how the show is positioned at the beginning as a class, but then becomes these parodies. Made it each one seem longer than it was, and the jokes subsequently less funny. (But maybe I'm weird, I don't know.)

great comedy &acting

By Joe Alba / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 5 shows

How refreshing! Great comedy, actors were talented & funny. Highly recommend!

1 person found this review helpful

Actors Throwing Props at Each Other

By Scot Moore / August 8, 2013
This user has reviewed 7 shows

I mean, that's basically what this is. But it's really well done! It's funny, quick, and polished. It's good to see schtick-ey theatre when it's well-rehearsed. Nice job all!

1 person found this review helpful

Theatre Background Needed

By John Stevens / August 6, 2013
This user has reviewed 3 shows

A show I caught on a whim, and even with a theatre degree, I was a bit lost at time by some of the humor. This show is really for the person so immersed in theater that they will catch all the in jokes and laughs. The play did drag a little and I felt a little restless, if the pacing was faster, I think I would have liked even with the missed jokes.

1 person found this review helpful

A fun education

By David Schlosser / August 6, 2013
This user has reviewed 4 shows

Wrapping the history of theater in 50 min is tough but they have done a great job. So if you are a theater goer or someone who think theater is for snobs this is your show.

The physical comedy, the writing, directing all come together perfectly. This is an hour of funny. Put it on your schedule and make sure you get your theater education this fringe.

1 person found this review helpful

Back To School!

By Jeanie Johnston / August 5, 2013
This user has reviewed 24 shows

My daughter (who attended a performing arts high school) and I decided to go back to school with "Theatre 101". We laughed through the whole thing......with our favorite part being the five second bit dedicated to Andrew Loyd Weber. The cast is fun and talented. Go and see it......even if you didn't major in theatre........you will have a great time and get a diploma!

2 people found this review helpful


By George Calger / August 3, 2013
This user has reviewed 3 shows

My face hurts! A wonderfully versatile group of actors serves up an hilarious parody of millennia of theater. I laughed so hard there were tears, especially while suffering Mother Russia and Ireland, absurdist theater, and murder-mystery tech. Even if you only have a passing familiarity with the history and conventions of theater, don't miss it! Plus, now I finally have my theater degree, with a button to prove it!

1 person found this review helpful

101 Class is ALL Class

By Zander Lee / August 3, 2013
This user has reviewed 4 shows

The funniest Theatre History class you'll ever attend. Once the announcements and intro from the Professor are done--the ensemble cranks up the energy and the laughs come in wave after wave.
I especially enjoyed the Oedipus and Shakespeare parodies, the Thorton Wilder section, and the end where everything "goes wrong".
One of the best ensembles you'll see in any Fringe show this year. Standouts in it (but the entire cast is great) are Krosnowski, Kjelsdeth, Saxe, and Carlton-Ford--especially as the "Narrator" in the Thorton Wilder section.
If you know theater, or even if you don't, you'll crack up.

2 people found this review helpful

Theatre 101

By Phil Berbig / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

Very funny show. It was well worth the hassle fighting rush hour traffic to drive across town and be there by 5:30.
I would recommend this anyone looking for a fun time.

2 people found this review helpful

Solid fun

By Liz Capouch / August 1, 2013
This user has reviewed 2 shows

A versatile group of actors spoof a few thousand years of theater with great success. Clever and educated-but-accessible writing forms the foundation of the script, and is built upon with style by the acting. The show had a bit of a slow start (perhaps the effect of it being the first performance with an audience), but started to hit its groove by the time we got to Shakespeare. Once that momentum was built, the jokes started landing better, and by the final "act," I was guffawing. A fun time overall!

3 people found this review helpful

Nonstop fun at a breakneck pace

By Andrew Troth / August 12, 2013
This user has reviewed 28 shows

A hoot from start to finish, held together by a great ensemble who were all clearly having a lot of fun. I was blown away by the technical complexity of the "mistakes" sequence and delighted by every perfectly-timed "wrong" cue. Bravo!

Arthur Ballet was funnier

By Dave Larson / August 10, 2013
This user has reviewed 13 shows

It's an OK show, with some nice bits. However, a little shaky here and there. Their "Noises Off" take off lost the irony of their actual props failing. OK on an Ultra Pass or Artist Pass.

Advanced Degree

By Kevin T. Houle / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 18 shows

I can now add to my collection of theatre degrees after seeing this inspired recounting of theatre history and onstage foibles. The sharp writing takes center stage, but it is kind of an 'inside baseball' look at theatre and those uninitiated audience members might not get a lot of the jokes and references. It also seems a tad ironic that a show about theatre could pay a little more attention to things like diction and pacing. But overall it's a fun hour and worth the cost of tuition.

1 person found this review helpful

Theatre 101? More like Theatre 1-oh-Fun!

By Glenn Morehouse Olson / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 7 shows

Theatre 101? More like Theatre 1-oh-Fun! (stupid pun here). Clever, quick-paced, well-acted, cleverly staged, and super funny - I don't think I stopped smiling the entire show. For people who love theatre and theatre history - this is a must-see.

If only I'd seen this show years earlier - I could have saved so much time and money! As someone who earned a BFA, spent years in the business, went back to get a Masters, and now teach theatre (darn it - I do wear scarves)...this one hour show could have saved me thousands!

This is a great way to spend an hour of your time. Run - don't walk - to see this show.

1 person found this review helpful

Things Arthur Ballet Never Taught Me...

By Patrick Pfundstein / August 8, 2013
This user has reviewed 29 shows

Sure there are the basics like Greek stuff and Shakespeare, and laughs were found throughout, but my favorites were on absurdist theater, How to Steal a Scene, and Things That Go Wrong. A great breezy tour from the dawn of time to now!

1 person found this review helpful

Scene stealers earn a kittie

By Matlisa Semrad / August 7, 2013
This user has reviewed 5 shows

Enjoyed the show offy bits: the glass shattering octave, back flips and sword fighting. Breaking up 60 minutes into 10 plays makes it hard to build a narrative arc, lots of gags but no real momentum.

Awesome show!

By Laura Doty / August 6, 2013
This user has reviewed 2 shows

Saw it last nite and absolutely loved it. I can't recall the last time I laughed so hard. As a frequent sound board op, I especially love tech section ;)

1 person found this review helpful


By Aseem Kaul / August 5, 2013
This user has reviewed 23 shows

A hilarious series of pitch-perfect parodies - a show that is at once familiar and surprising, and that is both intelligent enough to delight you if you know the original material well, but accessible enough to make you laugh even if you have no idea what they're talking about. The script is witty, the acting uniformly excellent and at least three of the cast members can really sing! I loved the Shakespeare parody and the Russian skit, and couldn't stop laughing through their take on Irish theater.

2 people found this review helpful

A Short Course

By Richard Shields / August 3, 2013
This user has reviewed 20 shows

This is a fast pace romp through the history of the theater. The segments of the show provide a parody of the high points of theatrical developments at a moment in time. If you like history (as imagined for entertainment purposes) you will enjoy the show.

It helps if you have prior knowledge of this topic otherwise you may feel this is too insider oriented and meant for the casts of of the Fringe shows not a general audience. The cast knew how to make use of a "round" venue. This may sound simple, but believe me many groups do not get how to perform in a " round" venue.

1 person found this review helpful

Better than the movies!

By Jerome fields / August 3, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

I watched two things on Thursday night, Theatre 101 and the Wolverine. By far Theatre 101 won the night, it left me laughing throughout at its quips, jokes, physicality and "insights" into the world of stage. The blockbuster ended up being like that bit of food that looked good for whatever reason, but ultimately didn't taste good and leaving you with the wish that you still had the good taste of the previous item to enjoy. If you are reading this the answer is YES, go watch this, the other stuff will be available on DVD later, this is a limited time shot at something whimsical and fun.

1 person found this review helpful

Pee Before You're Seated

By Kathleen Hollinger / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

I laughed so hard I would have peed my pants. Great script, wonderful acting and hilarious props. History of theatre and a free button (always a plus in my book!)

1 person found this review helpful

All you need to know about theater

By Jena Young / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 4 shows

4.5 stars, rounding up to 5. I think the beginning history bits could have used a bit more fluid transitioning, but the performers were all so very stellar- they kept me laughing the entire show. Definitely a good time.

2 people found this review helpful

101 Fun!

By Kevin McDonnell / August 11, 2013
This user has reviewed 18 shows

A very theatre-y show that was fun in general. There were some great one-liners and jabs at classic works, but other jokes didn't land & certain scenes were over-acted.

Give me my gruyere!

By Dave Stagner / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 5 shows

An entertaining romp through the history of theater by a bunch of theater nerds. Some very high points (Greek theater, absurdist theater), and some okay points (Shakespeare, musicals), but it will definitely make you laugh. If you're looking for something between a couple of must-sees, it's a very nice should-see.

Laugh Your Way to a Degree

By Claudia Haas / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 5 shows

Received my 2nd theatre degree last night and all I did was laugh. Inspired clowning, fun with props, and a madcap view of theatre through the ages - loved it all. From Russian class-angst to things that go awry - there's something for all - the hour flew by. I wanted more.

1 person found this review helpful

Great fun

By Anna Amyx / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 6 shows

This show is nothing but fun. I laughed the whole time. Includes physical humor, site gags, parodies (of course), geeky in-jokes, even some songs. Go. Enjoy.

1 person found this review helpful

Very Entertaining

By Fan of Theater / August 8, 2013
This user has reviewed 9 shows

This is so far the best fringe I've seen so far. Very creative and very funny. If you haven't watched it, you got one more chance.

1 person found this review helpful


By Adrienne Amell / August 7, 2013
This user has reviewed 2 shows

A clever and funny show.

The show is well acted, strongly directed, and works great in the round.

Theatre geeks will love the jokes, and even non-thespians will laugh and enjoy the creative storytelling.

1 person found this review helpful

Theatre Abridged

By Anissa Lubbers / August 6, 2013
This user has reviewed 3 shows

I never got my theatre degree in college and I often regret this, so I jumped at the chance to see/learn it all in 50 minutes! While the gimmick is fun and very entertaining, it's also great to step back and look at the amazing performances the actors bring to each "new" work. The accent work and character commitment is quite commendable! The musical section is hilarious (as a musical fan I really appreciated it), but the stand out is by far the final "murder mystery" where everything can and does go wrong. All actors will identify and audiences will love it!
Go get your degree while you can!

1 person found this review helpful

clever idea, well done

By Karen Cooper / August 5, 2013
This user has reviewed 17 shows

I genuinely laughed throughout this silliness, and I am not a theatre geek by any means. So it's an accessible send-up of everything from Greek tragedy to Shakepeare to Broadway to murder mysteries. Expect impressive singing and physicality from these talented actors.

My one complaint is that one of the women was nearly incomprehensible. I just could not figure out what she was saying most of the time, and I believe I was supposed to.

1 person found this review helpful

No prerequisites for a great time

By Daniel Pinkerton / August 3, 2013
This user has reviewed 18 shows

The idea of a history of theatre comedy is not new, but it's rarely done this well. Under its deliciously silly exterior is . . . more silliness. The direction is deft and fast-paced, the actors have great verbal and physical comedy skills, and the women sing extraordinarily well (the men, alas, do not). Broad puns and deliberately indecipherable accents abound. Highlights include "Oedipus the Bald," the Shakespeare and Chekhov parodies, and a section about which I will only say that the incomparable Dawn Krosnowski wears perhaps the shortest skirt in the history of theatre. I laughed a LOT and I recommend this show to all.

1 person found this review helpful

Love Theater? You will love this.

By Scott Burchill / August 3, 2013
This user has reviewed 2 shows

Very good premise very well executed. The period writing was spot on and the script as a whole was very good. The cast, and casting,was exceptional. I laughed out loud, and I don't do that. I would say this is a fringe must see.

1 person found this review helpful

Class is in session

By Kelly Rosenthal / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 21 shows

A fun sendup of various theater styles. Great cast and definitely worth the time.

1 person found this review helpful

Quick route to a BFA

By Scott Pakudaitis / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 40 shows

A talented cast romps through centuries of theater history with excellent examples of theatrical styles and customs. I especially enjoyed their foray into absurdism - I laughed so hard I ached afterward.

3 people found this review helpful

Background information + more

Hefty price tag for higher education getting you down?  Especially if you have a degree that requires you to say at your first real job, "You want fries with that?"

There has been a lot of press recently about the high cost of college education, especially among majors that may not lead to high paying jobs.  There is, however, a solution for theater majors!  Due to budget cuts here at the extension campus of North Dakota's Southeast Junior Technical Community College, we have been forced to reconsider the length of some of our degree programs.

The result is our new course, Theatre 101:  From the Dawn of Time to The Day Before Yesterday.  Theatre 101 provides students with an entire theater major in a single course.  Also due to classroom limitations (four or more classes must take place nightly in our classroom at Theatre in the Round), we have been forced to trim its length to just under one hour.

All students enrolling will receive their fully non-accredited theater degree in under 60 minutes and for the low, low price of $12 (plus a $4 Fringe Button available at the campus book store)!

Eliminate your student debt today!  Class is in session starting August 1st!

Cast + crew bios

Mitchell Bucky Fay

Original Script

Lauren Diesch


Lauren is happy to finally participate as an actor in Fringe. Lauren works as CLIMB Theatre’s Producer of Excellence in Teaching and recently appeared in TRP’s Alls Well That Ends Well. Originally from Pittsburgh, she has performed numerous roles there from “Bella” in Big Love to “Mrs. Smith” in The Bald Soprano. Lauren is also an Actor in Residence with Bakerloo Theatre Project and performed in a intercultural collaboration in Germany with Panoptikum Theatre in Augsburg.

Ware Carlton-Ford


Ware Carlton-Ford grew up studying red-nose clown and variety performance with My Nose Turns Red Circus Company in Cincinnati, Ohio. He later expanded his study of theater with a BA in Acting from Illinois State University, focusing on a physical approach to acting under the tutelage of movement guru, fight director, and all-around good guy, Paul Dennhardt. He has studied with Pig Iron Theater in Philadelphia, renowned clown Avner the Eccentric, and physical comedienne Diane Wasnak. When not on stage, he still spends a good deal of time clowning, but doesn't mind the odd looks it draws.

Kari Elizabeth Kjeldseth


Kari is thrilled to be performing in her first Minnesota Fringe show and is wondering what took her so long! Locally, she has performed with several companies including Freshwater Theatre Company, 20% Theatre Company, Box Wine Theatre, Lakeshore Players, and Bedlam Theatre to name a few. Up next for her is The Chameleon Theatre Circle’s production of ‘Wonder Of The World’, opening in November.

Dawn Krosnowski


Dawn Krosnowski is a Minneapolis-based actor who specializes in classical stage works. Some credits include Juliet, Lady Macbeth, Goneril, Titania, and a pregnant girl scout. Her most recent commercial credits include Kwik Trip, BB Cream, Scotch-Brite, Best Buy, and 3M filters to name a few. In addition to voice over, print, film, and hand modeling, Dawn has the privilege to voice CONvergence's mascots, Connie and Connie Mark II. She will also be appearing in "Diamond Lens" this Fringe festival. Need more Dawn? Catch the action at www.dawnkm.squarespace.com.

Jason Kruger


Jason Kruger studied theater at MSU Mankato. He has worked for CLIMB children's theater, taught theater and writing to adults with disabilities, and has performed in various shows around the Twin Cities. Most recently he played Mr. Pendleton in Hardcover Theater's Pollyanna. Other Fringe credits include acting in and directing Show Goons. He is a co-producer of The Monday Night Comedy Show; a booked showcase of stand-up comedy and other funny things.

Tamara Philbrick


Tamara Philbrick is delighted to share the stage with so many wonderful artists and to get her Fringe on this summer! A graduate of AMDA and Millikin University, Tamara has performed with Rooftop Theatre, Skylark Opera, Workhouse Theatre, Minneapolis Musical Theatre, Pioneer Place, and Theatre Unbound, among others. When not channeling the late, great Jimmy Stuart ("Mary!!!") or acting with her butt, she enjoys eating Popsicles, figure skating, flexing her guns, and ridiculing Kristen Stewart's acting technique. Thanks to the cast and crew for embracing Teddy as Theatre 101's mascot, and to all those who support the MN Fringe Festival!

Matthew Saxe


This is Matt's 4th Minnesota Fringe show, and he's also producing, directing and performing in a 5th this year-GRIMM FOR KIDS at Rarig! Previous Fringe shows include: Sex Soap Torture Weather- Producer/Director/Co-Writer/Lead, 2010, Once Upon a CSI-2011, and Tales From A Twisted Universe in 2012.
Film: JARHEAD, PEARL HARBOR, AMERICAN WEDDING. TV: THE BOLD & THE BEAUTIFUL. Theme Parks: Universal Studios Hollywood-SPECIAL EFFECTS STAGES SHOW where he performed for 6 years.
Theater Credits here in Minnesota: After the Apple-Table Salt, The Selkie Wife-Heart of the Roan, Macbeth-Theatre Coup d'etat, Wash My Sin Away, Out of the Frying Pan, and Much Ado About Nothing-Theatre Terra Firma, The Foreigner-Lyric Arts, All My Sons-Pioneer Playhouse, St. Cloud, The Childrens Hour-Gadfly Theatre.
Matt is the founder and artistic director of Shadow Horse Theater, and produces,directs, and performs in the popular A Drinking Game-Minnesota series at the Bryant Lake Bowl and is a member of LAST ACTION MOVIE improv group
Matt's B.A. in Theatre is from the U. of Alabama. Thanks to this amazing cast and crew and You for coming and supporting the Fringe! Matt's links: www.viceprecedence.com www.shadowhorsetheatre.com www.lastactionmovie.com

L. Robert Westeen

Pyro Jones

L. Robert Westeen spent 6 years in Minneapolis prior to relocating to Houston, Texas. He was the artistic director and founder of Big City Productions in Minneapolis and performed with a variety of companies in the Twin Cities. Some of his Minneapolis and regional stage credits include: Loves Labours Lost (Don Armado), La Cage Aux Folles (Jean Michel), Midsummers Night Dream (Lysander), Boys In The Band (Harold), The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me (Solo performance), Peter Pan (Tour), Wizard of Oz (Tour), Don't Dress for Dinner (Robert), You Can’t Take it With You (Kohlenkov) Office Hours, Over the River and Through the Woods (Nicholas), The Fantasticks (El Gallo), Godspell (John the Baptist/Judas), Snoopy!! The Musical (Snoopy), The Nerd (Willum), The Threesome (The Alsatian), Blood, Dinner First (World Premiere), and Murdering Marlow (Henry Maunder). He currently resides in Houston, Texas where he is the resident playwright for Company OnStage, Inc. and serves in an advisory capacity with Nightcap Productions and Cone Man Running Production. He can also be seen during the Fringe Festival in his one man show COCAINE AND ETHEL MERMAN: The New Homo Guide, playing at the Music Box Theater. www.lrobertwesteen.com .

Derek Washington


Derek “Duck” Washington has been acting, directing, audio designing, and writing in the Twin Cities since he moved here in 1995. Some recent credits include Treasure Island and All’s Well that Ends Well here at Theatre in the Round, Better or Worse for Freshwater Theatre Company, and The Complete Works of William Shatner : Abridged in last year’s Fringe Festival. Duck will also appear in the Death of a Stormtrooper segment of Fringe Orphans 2: Orphan Harder which can be seen in this same venue during the festival.

Tess Kean

Stage Manager

Heather Lamb

Assistant Director/Stage Hand

Heather Lamb was bitten by the theatre bug in London back in 2003 when she realized she didn't have to be ON stage to participate. She has been
involved with Properties, Costumes, or Stage Crew ever since, working with such organizations as Eckerd College and American Stage in St. Pete, FL, Salerno Entertainment Group in Tampa, FL. As well as running away with Cirque du Soleil for 2+ years. She's excited to finally be involved in a (hilarious!) Fringe show here in the Twin Cities, although this will still be her third year volunteering in the festival since 2011.

Angela Fox


Angela Fox has been performing in the twin cities area for over 10 years. Fox is an actor, dancer, and choreographer for various dance troupes and theater companies including The Jungle Theater, Bloomington Civic Theater, and Theatre L'Homme Dieu. She has toured with various singing groups and bands, recorded radio jingles and back-up vocals and is the lead singer of Scarlet County. Fox is a published composer with Alliance Publications INC and has composed music for film and various theater companies, including Hardcover Theater. Fox is also a music teacher, specializing in voice and piano lessons.

Steve Looten Jr.

Fight Choreographer

Foster Johns

Dialect Coach

CJ Mantel

Costume Design

CJ Mantel started costuming when she was very young, dressing neighborhood kids up like circus animals. As a grown up, she has worked a number of local companies, usually because she's sleeping with the director. (Don't worry, they're married.)

Forest Godfrey

Sound Design/Lighting Consultant/Co-Producer

Forest has been a Twin Cities area sound and light designer since 1999. Theatre 101 is Forest's first foray into producing. Selected credits include: THEATER: Mu Performing Arts (Yellow Fever, Little Shop of Horrors, Yellow Face, Flower Drum Song, Q&A, The Walleye Kid, Filipino Hearts), Chameleon Theatre Circle (The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Completely Hollywood, Return to the Forbidden Planet, A Chorus Line), Synapse Theater (All's Fair), Theater in the Round (The Reluctant Debutante), Theater Pro Rata (Dido: Queen of Carthage), Tedious Brief Productions (Tempests), Cromulent Shakespeare Company (Theatre 101 in 2000 and 2002!) FILM: Sinsear Productions (Courtship, Sex, Commitment - 2010), Paramount Home Video (To Be or Not to Be - Klingons and Shakespeare - Star Trek VI Bonus Feature - 2009).

Megan Dowd


Scott Pakudaitis

Publicity Photographer

Wendy Ruyle

Postcard Design

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