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Physicality and Performing Arts Festival
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A Salute to Our Great Teachers

We recognize and fully appreciate that MotionFest would not be anything, matter of fact it would be nothing if it weren't for two very caring groups of people which are dedicated to improving the variety arts, and they would be, you, our attendees, the students...and our teachers, past, present and future...

Many of the Instructors have links to their personal websites attached to their names in the Biography.
 

To jump directly to an instructor's bio, follow these links:

bulletGene Anderson- Magician, Speaker and Lecturer Extraordinaire
bulletAvner - Newbie performer with good potential
bullet Karl Baumann  - character/dancer/acrobat
bullet Tom Casciero- Professor of voice and drama
bullet Dick Chudnow - Founder of improv's "ComedySportz"
bullet Peter Davison - Master of movement and object manipulation
bulletDodi Disanto
bullet Jim Dorman - Theater technician and stage director
bulletTom Dougherty- Star Clown Big Apple Circus/ Instructor: RBBB Clown College
bullet Bob Fitch - Broadway Actor/Magician. Consultant to stars
bullet Ruth Mae Finch- Trademark attorney
bullet Ronlin Foreman - Dell'Arte International School of Physical Theatre
bullet Fred Garbo- Physical Comedian/ Founder of Inflatable Theatre Co.
bullet Julie Goell - Commedia Dell'Arte trained clown/actress
bullet Laura Herts- Paris based character clown
bulletThe Jokesters - Performers and professors of makeup application
bulletScott Meltzer- Comedy Writer Authority and Entertainer
bulletStuart N. Keiser CPA - Accountant (and musician)
bulletAnne M. Lembo - Copyright attorney
bulletBrian McNelis - National event producer
bullet Tony & Karen Hurll-Montanaro - Internationally known mime authority
bulletRobert Nelson -aka The Butterfly Man, street performer emeritus
bullet Steven Ragatz - 6 year veteran of Cirque du Soleil
bullet Kenny Raskin - Lead clown, Cirque du Soleil - Nouvelle Experience
bulletJeff Raz - Complete modern vaudevillian
bulletDrew Richardson - a.k.a. Drew the Dramatic Fool
bullet Don Rieder - Internationally known clown, master teacher and director
bullet Joan Schirle- An artistic Director at Dell' Arte School of Physical Theatre
bullet Steve Smith - 10 yr director of Ringling Brothers, Barnum & Bailey Clown College
bullet Joanie Spina - Performer/Dancer and Choreographer for Magicians
bulletTodd Strong - Former teacher, French National Circus School
bullet Livingston Taylor - Singer/Songwriter/Professor, Berklee School of Music
bulletLiebe Wetzel- Innovative Puppeteer
bulletMoni Yakim - Head of Juliard movement department


Gene Anderson

After 32 years a scientist and manager at the Dow Chemical Company, Anderson retired Global Research and Development Change Leader. He earned his Ph.D. in Chemistry at the University of Texas at Austin, and he did post-doctoral research at the University of Oslo, Norway. While at Texas he co-authored "Newspaper Magic" with Frances Ireland Marshall. Now in its eleventh printing, it is one of the two best selling books ever published by Magic Inc. of Chicago. Following his Norway sojourn, he wrote Topper Martyn's book, "Topper Mad, Mad Magic" which is also published by Magic Inc.

Anderson has performed magic professionally (i.e., he was paid!) as a "part-time pro" in 21 countries on six continents. He has been awarded seven trophies in magical competitions for stage, comedy, close-up and originality. He was on the cover of GENII (June, 1977) and THE LINKING RING (May, 1987) and he is one of six honorary lifetime members of the Magic Circle of Norway.

Anderson's initial presentation of "The Part-Time Pro" lecture was for the Academy of Magical Arts in Hollywood in 1975. It earned him a nomination for "Lecturer of the Year," and he was simultaneously nominated as "Visiting Magician of the Year" for his performances at the Magic Castle.

Although he has retired from his corporate job, Anderson still considers himself a "part-time" professional magician because he is also in the speaking, training and facilitation businesses.

avner Avner
Avner Eisenberg was described by New York Magazine as "a clown for the thinking man". His show Avner the Eccentric was a hit of the 1984-1985 Broadway season. He appeared on Broadway in Ghetto and The Comedy of Errors, but he is probably best known for his portrayal of the scene stealing holy man in the film The Jewel of the Nile.

Avner continues to tour his one-man show internationally and has won awards at the Edinburgh Festival, the Monte Carlo International Circus Festival, and the Festival Internacional de Pallassos in Barcelona. He won the first prize at the Arosa Humor Festival in Switzerland.

He recently won the "Snow Star" for comedy in Switzerland, and the "Lachmesse" award in Germany. Avner starred as Vladimir in Waiting for Godot at the Portland Stage Company. Avner studied with Jacques Lecoq from 1971-1974.

Karl Baumann
Dancer/choreographer Karl Baumann certainly fulfilled our high expectations when he flew in at the last minute to replace a late cancellation at the first MotionFest. Taking into account his years of experience as a featured perfomer/dancer with Cirque du Soleil and Momix, it's easy to understand how he could deliver a stellar performance on such short notice.

Is it fair to say he raised the bar even higher by conducting an
electrifying, kick-ass workshop on group and individual movement the next day? Ask any of the dozens of excited participants who were fortunate to be on hand as he shared his delightful sense of wonder and exploration.

We wanted Karl back for the next MotionFest. Unfortunately, his busy schedule with Cirque du Soleil, as well as appearing in music videos and television spots (both for North America and Europe) prevented him from attending.  Fortunately, he has time for this year's MotionFest at Reno.

If you move on stage (and we all do), you will want to take one of Karl's workshops.

Tom Casciero
Tom Casciero holds a Ph.D. in Theatre from The Union Institute Graduate School. He is certified as a Movement Analyst (CMA) by the Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies in New York and has received post-certificate training in Advanced Teaching Methods from the same institute. He has taken Laban workshops with Warren Lamb, Janis Pforsich, Peggy Hackney, and many others and presented his research at International Laban Conferences in Amherst, Minneapolis, and Baltimore.

In physical theatre, Tom is trained in mime, acting, and improvisation by Tony Montanaro and has taken workshops or master classes with Kabuki Master Shozo Sato; Jacques Lecoq and Daniel Stein of Paris; Rymond Kleckot of the Polish Mime Theatre; Tmu-Na of Israel; and Ronlin Foreman of the Dell Arte School. He also studied anatomy and has taken workshops in stage combat, clowning, and psychobiology. In the area of voice, he studied with Arthur Lessac, Shakespeare & Co. and has taken workshops with Bonnie Raphael, Neil Freeman, Patrick Tucker, and Robert Sataloff. He studied the singing voice with Charlotte Anderson and together they developed voice/movement integration methods for singers.

Mr. Casciero is currently an Assistant Professor of Theatre at Towson University in Maryland, where he teaches Movement for the Actor, Mime and Movement Theatre Techniques and Styles, Beginning Acting, Voice & Movement Integration, and Movement Theatre Improvisation and Production.

Mr. Casciero is also a performer, director, and workshop presenter. He has toured his solo performances of comedy and physical theatre nationally and internationally; directed regional and university theatre; and taught for colleges, theaters, conferences, and festivals.

Having served as a producer, promoter and director within the theatre community, and as founder and board member of several organizations in the larger community, Mr. Casciero also brings a wealth of organizational, personal communication, and business skills to his work.

Dick Chudnow
Richard Chudnow is the co-owner and co-creater of COMEDYSPORTZ. He is the licenser to twenty-two ComedySportz Venues in the United States. He has taught Improvisation classes throughout the USA and has been a writer on movies such as Spy Hard, Off the Wall and KGOD (Pray TV on Video). He co-created and starred in Kentuckey Fried Theater and has been a past President of Toast Masters International

Peter Davison

Peter is a multi-disciplinary performer working with juggling, dance and monologue. He began as a teenage street performer in Los Angeles in the late '70s. In 1982, he won first place at the National Juggling Championships and became a founding member of the trio Airjazz. With Airjazz, Peter has toured internationally and appeared on numerous TV shows such as the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. Peter has taught movement workshops at the national circus schools of Quebec and France under the direction of Guy Caron (one of the founders of Cirque du Soleil), at Celebration Barn Theater in Maine, and at the Lecoq Theater Program of Naropa University in Colorado. Working primarily as a solo performer since 1991, he has toured his show Up in the Air  nationally and was featured on Harry Anderson's CBS special The Tricks of his Trade. Peter's new one-man show, A View from the Moon, a dance/theater piece based on four famous insane artists, was produced in October at the California Performing Arts Festival. Peter lives in Boulder, Colorado with his wife and two children.

Jim Dorman
Jim is a working theatrical designer & technician with over 18 years of experience touching on virtually all aspects of technical theatre. While usually specializing in lighting and sound design & operation, he has been working as a one-person technical staff in a 600-seat theater for the past 6 years.

Besides his passion for technical theatre, Jim has also been juggling for 14 years and has done "a little bit of everything" in the staging of juggling shows, from directing to stage managing to performing on rare occasions. Jim has also spent time teaching theatre technology and design to students ranging from junior-high volunteers to his professional colleagues.

As he is forced to move out of traditional theatrical work by his failing eyesight, Jim is developing new juggling skills and working on lighting and sound designs to enhance their performance. He is also teaching juggling classes and working on Neon Husky, a prop company specializing in "stuff you don't have to let go of."

Tom Dougherty
Drawing on the traditions of both theater and circus arts, Tom has developed a style of performance that has brought him success in many different venues. A graduate of New York's famed neighborhood playhouse, Tom went on to co-found the Baltimore-based theater company Theatricks. It was there he combined his theatrical knowledge and the clowning skills he had learned earlier in his 3 year tour with the Ringling Bros. Circus. He has performed his one-man show in such places as the Kennedy center, the National Theater, and Wolf Trap Center for the Performing Arts as well as festivals and galas worldwide.

He was commissioned to develop a special comedy act for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and then successively performed it with the National, the Detroit, and the Cleveland Symphony Orchestras. In 1997 he returned to the circus ring to win the silver medal at the International Circus Festival. In 2001 he was the star clown in the Big Apple Circus' "Clown Around Town" tour and most recently as a guest performer with Cirque du Soleil. As a teacher he was a member of the faculty at the Baltimore School for the Arts, and the Ringling Bros.Clown College as well as guest instructor for drama departments nationwide.
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Bob Fitch
Bob Fitch is a professional actor, dancer, singer, magician, director and choreographer. His extensive performing career includes roles in 27 productions on Broadway as well as in films and on television. As a magic consultant and director, he's worked with (among many others) David Copperfield and Jeff McBride. He is also well-known for his coin and topit work. In this workshop he will offer performers the unique opportunity to learn and to integrate acting, movement and basic theatre techniques into their work.

Julie Goell
Julie Goell grew up in Rome where she learned from the masters of Commedia Dell'Arte. In Europe she worked in music and theatre, film, television and recording. Among these were "Mummenschanz", the Swiss circus "Schaubude", the film "Cassandra Crossing" and the TV series "Le Avventure di Saturnino Farandola". While in Rome Ms. Goell cofounded the clown troupe "I Gesti" and taught physical comedy skills at Teatro Studio and at the Max Rheinhardt Schule in Berlin. While based in New York she acted in the Broadway production of Ghetto and directed several small theater and regional productions.

She currently lives in Maine and teaches clowning and Commedia at the Dell'Arte School of Physical Comedy and at the Celebration Barn Theatre in collaboration with her husband, Avner Eisenberg. A graduate of Emerson College in acting and directing, Julie is completing a music degree at the University of Southern Maine. Julie plays Klezmer music on string bass with The Casco Bay Tummlers and was music director for the world premiere of a new Holocaust play, "Manifest". She tours internationally with her solo shows, "Woman in a Suitcase" and "Opening Night" which recently previewed at Diorama Arts Center in London and opened at the Physigig Festival of Physical Comedy in Portland, Maine.

Ruth Mae Finch
Ruth Mae Finch is of counsel to the firm. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with honors (1974) and a Master of Arts degree with honors (1979) from University of Maryland, and received her Juris Doctorate degree with honors from University of Baltimore Law School in 1978. She received further training in the Masters of Law program in intellectual property at George Washington University. Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Finch served as an Assistant State's Attorney in Baltimore City for which she gained substantial jury trial experience. She also practiced with her father, Walter G. Finch, as an intellectual property attorney for more than ten years.

Ms. Finch is a member of the Maryland Bar, and is a member of the Bars of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, and the U.S. District Court for the State of Maryland. She is also an active member of the Women's Bar Association, Maryland Bar Association, and Toastmasters International. Ms. Finch is also a Dale Carnegie Instructor.

Ms. Finch counsels clients in all aspects of intellectual property protection relating to trademark registration and litigation, copyright registration and litigation, licensing, and unfair competition.

Ronlin Foreman

Ron trained with Jacques Lecoq and at the Valley Studio in Wisconsin.
His solo clown shows have been presented all over the U.S. and
internationally, including The Actors Theatre of Louisville and the International Movement Theatre Festival.  He has received Solo Artist grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and has directed nationally and internationally.

As a Master Teacher, he has been at Dell'Arte since 1985; he has taught clowning to first year students as well as given Masters Workshops and directed ensemble productions.

Fred Garbo
Fred Garbo got paid for doing a card trick in 1974, and has been a professional performer ever since. On Sesame Street, he was the acrobat inside Barkley the Dog. On Broadway, he was the chief juggler in the musical Barnum. He toured Europe, Hong Kong and Australia with the Obie Award-winning Foolsfire, with Bob Berky and Michael Moschen.

Whether tumbling for the New York City Opera at Lincoln Center or dancing with MOMIX in Brazil, Fred brings a gymnast's timing and an actor's presence to his Inflatable Theater Co.

Most recently featured on David Letterman's Late Night, Fred Garbo continues to astound and tickle audiences with his pop-action inflatables and hilarious stage presence.

For the last 12 years he has been inventing inflatables with artist/builder: George York. Fred has trained and performed with the Master of Illusion: Tony Montanaro. (Fred also trains in "snowboarding" every chance he gets.)

Laura Herts
Laura Herts is a Paris based Character Clown, whose training began years ago at the The Baltimore School for the Arts where she studied Dance and Visual Arts. Upon graduating, she began a world tour, which has now been extended into a lifetime experience.

Through her travels she rediscovered a childhood passion; mime. From that moment on, she performed wherever possible, beginning with street performing and teaching mime in Israel in 1985. As her passion for the art of mime, improvisation, and comedy performance grew, she decided to continue her quest for experience and knowledge by travelling to and throughout Europe; participating in Theatre festivals and attending workshops and Schools based on the Physical Theater.

Laura, studied under Lassaad Saidi, Jacques Lecoq, Philippe Gaulier, Daniel Stein, Stanislav Borgeofski, and Zigmund Mollic, while continuing to earn a living performing. Slowly and surely, Laura developed her original style of theater creating a world of clown, comedy, and social satire. SInce moving to Paris, Laura has created two One-Woman-Shows: "The Last Tangle In Paradise," and "Electric Lazy Land," and various cabaret numbers. Performing interactively with her audiences, she has played in Theatres, Cabarets, Circuses, and many Festivals throughout Europe, Japan, Brazil, Russia, Israel, Madagascar as well as giving her workshops on Mime, Neutral Mask, and Clown.

Scott Meltzer
Scott Meltzer is the head writer and chief performer for Comedy Industries. He has degrees in math and computer science from U. C. Berkeley where he graduated with honors. An ex-IBMer and a Watson Scholar, he chooses to spend his time juggling knives on a six foot unicycle. He has performed at more comedy clubs, trade shows, and corporate events than any other computer programmer in the world.

In addition to his performing skills, Scott has written commercials for radio, computer code for database systems, interviews for professional wrestling and over two hundred scripts for trade shows, training sessions and other corporate events. Scott has also taught comedy writing since 1991.

Scott started performing as a child actor at the age of 10 with the award winning San Jose Children's Musical Theater alongside such future stars as Charley McGowan, Paula Benedetti, Megan Hart, Paula Mulcahey, and Eilana Lappalainen.

In college, Scott met John Park and together they formed the American Dream Comedy Team. They won first place in The San Francisco Street Performers' Festival, an honor which led to lucrative bookings in Japan, Hong Kong, and Australia. These first international shows led to further bookings back on the streets of San Francisco. Oh well.

After graduating in 1986, Scott and John became the featured act in the glitzy Las Vegas revue "Splash." They moved on to "Superstars and Stripes" in Atlantic City where they received rave reviews. This critical acclaim led them to even greater success back on the streets of San Francisco. Oh well.

Joe Lake, producer of the Children's Miracle Network Telethon, gave Scott and John their first national television exposure. The show went so well that Scott appeared with John (and later with Rich) for nine straight years on CMN telethons. Eventually the glamorous whirlwind that is telethon television spat them out like a used Kleenex, and Scott and Rich returned to the streets of San Francisco. Sigh.

Scott has never forgotten his roots as a street performer, probably because he was constantly being reminded of them. However, now that he has created Comedy Industries, he has left the streets for good. At least for now.

Tony & Karen Hurll-Montanaro
Tony is the Artistic Director of Celebration Barn Theatre. His background includes over 40 years of acting & mime in the U.S., Canada, and Europe. He studied at Rutgers and Comumbia, and later in Paris with Marcel Marceau and Etienne Decroux. He first gained national attention with his show, "A Mime's Eye View." In the 1960s, Tony wrote and performed in "Pretendo," an award-winning improvisational mime show developed for CBS television. In 1972, Tony and his family moved to South Paris, Maine, where he created the Montanaro Mime Theatre School. He continued creating, teaching, and directing throughout the 1980s, including performances at Lincoln Center, on Swedish national television, and in the motion picture "Clan of the Cave Bear." Tony currently tours internationally with his wife, Karen Hurll-Montanaro. Their first book, Mime Spoken Here, was published in 1996.

The Jokesters
Steve Bauer and Marianne Wittelsberger, AKA the Jokesters, are professors of stage makeup at Towson University. The Jokesters lived in Hollywood, California for the past 12 years where they produced, wrote and starred in their own Cable Ace Award Winning television show called "Jokesters." There they worked for every major studio in Hollywood, including Paramount, Fox, MGM, Universal and Disney and were on the Ben Nye Makeup catalog and poster. Bauer and Wittelsberger have been performing their unique Comedy, Mime & Magic act together since 1983. They bring a performer's perspective to the art of makeup design. They don't just put makeup on other people; they actually wear it themselves - their techniques are road tested. Both Jokesters graduated from Towson University in 1986 as Theatre Majors with concentrations in Makeup Design, Costume Design and Mime.

Stuart N. Keiser CPA
Stuart N. Keiser is a senior manager in the accounting and auditing department at Keiser and Keiser CPA. He has extensive experience with individual tax returns and he specializes in non-profits. He has many artists as clients and is a former guitar rocker.

Ann M. Lembo, Esq.
Ann M. Lembo, Esq. is an attorney in private practice, concentrating in protecting the intellectual property rights of writers, designers, photographers, and other artists. She also practices in the areas of small business matters, estates and trusts, and is a trained mediator. She is an adjunct faculty member of the University of Maryland School of Law in the Clinical Law Program and of the University of Baltimore in the Legal and Ethical Studies Graduate Program at the Yale Gordon College of Liberal Arts, and has been a panelist at the annual meeting of the American Society of Journalists and Authors.

Ann was graduated from the University of Maryland School of Law, where she was awarded the Hoffberger Clinical Law Prize and the Public Service Award, and was named Outstanding Woman Law Graduate by the Women Lawyers Association. She was graduated, magna cum laude, from the University of Baltimore Merrick School of Business. Ann is a member of The Women s Law Center of Maryland, Inc., the Maryland State Bar Association, the Intellectual Property, the General Practice Solo and Small Firm, and Law Practice Management Sections of the American Bar Association, the Bar Association of Baltimore City.

Ann is an avid bicyclist and is co-author of Short Bicycle Rides In and Around Philadelphia (The Globe Pequot Press, 1994; 2nd edition 1997; 3rd edition 1999). She is vice-president of the Maryland Association of Mountain Bike Operators (MAMBO), a bicycling advocacy group with more than 500 members, and serves on the Maryland Coalition for Recreational Trails.

Brian McNelis
Brian McNelis is a twenty year veteran of Special Events, Theatre, and Television. He has unique training in comedy and circus skills, having studied with several European and American Master Clowns. He has worked on over 4500 corporate, social, and private events as a producer, writer, and performer in New York City, Philadelphia, Washington DC, Chicago, Atlanta, and Bermuda. In addition, Mr. McNelis has worked in arts administration Off-Broadway, with Washington DC's Arena Stage and with the Shakespeare Theatre at the Folger. Mr. McNelis constantly searches for the best and most appropriate artists for events. His skills as a producer are appreciated by both clients and performers alike; the events are exceptional because of his attention to detail and his care of all aspects. He believes in fun as a way of life, and loves to laugh.

Robert Nelson
(The artist formerly known as Butterfly Man)
A former research chemist at Vanderbilt University, Robert Nelson quit the world of science to pursue a dream of making people laugh, and has never looked back. Mr. Nelson first metamorphosed into his Butterfly Man character in 1978 while performing at Mardi Gras in New Orleans. Soon after, he indelibly affirmed his commitment to performing by getting his now famous butterfly tattoos.

This veteran stage entertainer and busker has been traversing the globe ever since. Repeatedly voted the most popular performer at San Francisco's legendary Pier 39, he also has won numerous international performing competitions.

Still going strong after 20 years onstage, he observes, "You really have to love people to keep this up." Mr. Nelson, also a writer and actor, lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Kumi.

Steven Ragatz
Steven Ragatz has been entertaining audiences with his juggling, physical comedy, stilt walking and general antics for over two decades. As a six year veteran of the French Canadian circus, Cirque du Soleil, Steven has performed throughout North America. His television credits include The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Rosie O'Donnell Show and The Today Show. He has recently appeared with the Indianapolis and Detroit Symphony Orchestras performing a juggling act during the Yuletide Celebration 2001/2002 programs. Steven holds a B.A. in Variety Theater and an M.S. in Computer Science from Indiana University. He studied mime, stage movement and juggling with Fred Garbo, Tony Montanaro, George Pinney, and Michael Moschen. He currently resides in Bloomington, Indiana, with his wife, Lisa, and their two children, Andrew and Melissa.

Kenny Raskin

Kenny Raskin has made a name for himself as a leading physical comedy performer of the New Vaudeville movement. He originated the role of Lefou, the comic sidekick of the villain Gaston, in the Broadway production of Disney's Beauty and the Beast. Before coming to Broadway, Kenny also starred as the lead clown Everyman in Cirque du Soleil's Nouvelle Experience, and recently filmed a 3D IMAX film with Cirque du Soleil entitled Journey of Man.

In addition, he appeared as the Vaudeville Comedian in critically acclaimed director Barry Levinson's latest film, Liberty Heights. Before joining Cirque du Soleil, Kenny performed his one man show The Audition in theatres, universities and festivals throughout the United States and television shows in Europe and South America, delighting audiences with a unique blend of theatrical pieces and clown characters. The San Francisco Chronicle called him "a stunning virtuoso." In the spirit reminiscent of the great old silent clowns, Kenny explores the comic possibilities inherent in seemingly simple tasks. He injects an infectious sense of play into his performances, creating a true two way street between his audiences and himself.

Kenny has also served as an adjunct faculty member in the theatre departments at Boston University, the University of Nevada Las Vegas, New York University, and at Emory University, where, in the fall of 1999, he produced, directed and performed in A Fool's Festival: The Last Laugh Before the Millenium. He also teaches clowning and physical comedy workshops and retreats across the United States as part of actor training programs.

raz Jeff Raz
Jeff Raz is a professional playwright, actor, clown, director, consultant and teacher living in Alameda, California. He is a graduate of Dell' Arte School of Physical Theater and a veteran of the Dell' Arte Players Co., Vaudeville Nouveau and Make*A*Circus. As a performer, Mr. Raz has played on Broadway and toured nationally and internationally, specializing in a wide range of material from Shakespeare to circus.

His credits include Comedy of Errors at Lincoln Center, N. Y., which was televised nationally on PBS, Servant of Two Masters at Berkeley Repertory Theater, the title role in La Bete at TheatreWorks and Midsummer Night's Dream at the Marin Shakespeare Festival, winner of the Bay Area Drama Critics Circle's Play of the Year of 1994. For almost a decade he has worked with Diane Wasnak in the acrobatic clown duet, Pino & Razz, at the core of the New Pickle Circus. In the mid 80's, Mr. Raz was the founder and artistic director of the San Francisco New Vaudeville Festival that featured hundreds of artists and was captured in two Disney Channel specials.

In addition, he has written 10 plays. He has taught at Ringling Bros. Clown College, S.F. State University and is currently the director of the Professional Clown Conservatory at the S.F. School of Circus Arts and the Lead Teaching Artist at the Julia Morgan Center for the Arts in Berkeley, CA.

Drew Richardson

Drew's life-long personal tension between drama and foolishness gelled on his way to attaining a B.F.A. in Theatre while studying Clown-Theatre under the tutulage of John Towsen at Ohio University.

Left speechless after his academic achievement, Drew continued his studies with Jacques Lecoq in Paris.

After recovering from these experiences, Drew taught Dramatic Foolery workshops at such institutions as the University of Michigan, Roosevel University, Columbia College, the Art Institute of Chicago, and Northwestern University Medical School. He has served as clown consultant and instructor for 500 Clown Macbeth, Strawdog Theatre, and Powertap Productions/Next Theatre Lab. He also taught 'Improvising

Physical Comedy' at The Big Stinkin’ Improv Festival in Austin, Texas.

Drew has created five one-man shows including "The Psychology of Clumsiness" (twice picked as Critic’s Choice by The Chicago Reader), and Help! Help! (“Ingenious” - the Chicago Tribune)

His one-minute silent movies (The Guy Who series) are currently showing in major motion picture theatres around the United States.

 

Don Rieder
Don Rieder is the author of Klauniada's clown plays.  Behind their pratfalls, mayhem, and laughter is a gentle pathos akin to the comedy of Keaton and Chaplin. His performances are characterized by a rubbery dexterity, energy, and invention. As a solo clown Rieder has had European tours that included performing and teaching at international mime and theatre festivals in France, Belgium, Germany and the Czech Republic. He has studied at the Ecole LeCoq in Paris and received two International Research and Exchanges Board Grants to study in Prague with founding members of the famed Circus Alfred. Don Rieder who is also a certified Laban Movement Analyst, teaches circus clown/theatre clown, physical comedy, commedia dell' arte, mask and circus technique. He has taught at the National Theatre School and the Ecole national de cirque in Montreal and as artist-in-residence invited by the theatre departments of both Canadian and American universities. He is a contributing editor for the French journal GESTES, a member of the Montreal English Critics Circle and writes regularly for the websites of the National Movement Theatre Association in the United States.

Joan Schirle
Joan Schirle is an Artistic Director of Dell'Arte International, a resident ensemble with a 27-year history of collaborative creation, international touring, and acclaimed physical style. She is the Director of Training for the Dell'Arte International School of Physical Theatre as well as one of its Master Teachers. Her directorial achievements include a ground-breaking circus production of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" at the San Diego Repertory Theatre in 2000 and 2001. She leads Dell'Arte's Study Abroad Bali program in the performing arts of Bali, and is a certified teacher of the F.M. Alexander Technique. As a principal performer with the Dell'Arte Company, she has performed all over the world in over 20 original company productions.

Steve Smith
Steve Smith, a 1971 graduate of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Clown College, served as the Director of the school from 1985-1995. In addition, Steve conceived & directed the 123rd Edition of Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus. He has a BFA in acting from the Goodman School of Drama and he has attended Sigfrido Aguilar's Estudio Busqueda de Pantomima, in Mexico. Steve has also studied with Jacques Lecoq; American mime, Ben Tucker and Israeli mime, Juki Arkin.

In addition to his teaching experiences at the Goodman School of Drama at the Art Institute of Chicago, The Theatre School, and DePaul University, Steve has conducted numerous workshops and master classes in physical comedy worldwide. In 1993, Steve was inducted into the Clown Hall of Fame. In 1996 and 1997 , Steve served as the Talent Development Coordinator for Chuck Jones Film Productions, which was exclusively involved in the on-going production of short theatrical cartoons for Warner Bros. in the traditional style of full character animation established by Warner Bros. in the 1950s.

Recently, Steve directed for the international touring cast of the Reduced Shakespeare Company, spent two months in Japan, writing/ directing Fantasia De La Primavera, for the Japanese entertainment venue called "Parque Espana", and took to the sea directing MYSTIQUE, for Princess Cruises' inaugural voyage of The Sun Princess. Steve also returned to Chicago to remount his play, Center Ring Circus, for the Chicago Children's Theatre lOth Anniversary Season, and served as Lead Teaching Artist for The Midnight Circus/Gallery 37 Project. In 1998, he was co-creator and co-director for Florida Studio Theatre's Cabaret hit revue, Inspired Lunacy; co-director of The University of Virginia's production of Noises Off; director for The Clown Show featuring David Larible and Pipo Sosman Jr. in Mexico City; and part of the Creative Team for the Inagural Season of Circus Sarasota. Currently, Steve is serving as a Creative Consultant for a major theme park in Orlando, Florida, in addition to serving in that same capacity for the off-Broadway show The IT Girl A Silent Movie Musical.

Joanie Spina
As principal performer, choreographer, and artistic consultant to David Copperfield for 11 years, Joanie Spina redressed the ancient art of magic with a flair of the caliber of Broadway and Hollywood productions. Critics worldwide note that the results of her collaboration with the world's most respected conjurer raised the stature of magic to new heights in the eyes of the public and ensured the viability of the art form into the 21st century.

An acclaimed solo performer, Spina mesmerizes audiences as she infuses magic with a gamut of emotions ranging from romantic mystery to whimsical fantasy. These results invariably lead to unadulterated amazement. It is through her work as a single performer that audiences gain insight into the depth and range of this one-woman tour de force.

Las Vegas is very familiar with Joanie as she has performed at two world-famous hotels, Caesar's Palace and the Riviera Hotel in their lavish showrooms. She also co-starred in her own show with Becky Blaney, the critically acclaimed "Women of Magic," at the Claridge Hotel in Atlantic City


Todd Strong
Todd was the juggling teacher at the National Circus School of France and Die Etage circus school in Berlin. Todd is the author of several books on juggling-related skills: "The Devil Stick Book", "The Diabolo Book", "Diabolo für Fortgeschrittene", and "The Dice Stacking Book". Visit Perceptual Motion, Todd's web page.

Livingston TaylorLivingston Taylor
Who is Livingston Taylor?
: Livingston Taylor is a singer/guitar player and a teacher of performance at the Berklee School of Music
Why is he lecturing at MotionFest? Livingston Taylor was seen performing by a pair of experienced variety performers at a small cafe/club in Florida. The room held about 150 people and it was reported that Mr. Taylor "OWNED" the room. Never had an entertainer so held his audience according to these performers. The following year Mr. Taylor came back to the area to perform at an outdoor festival with attendence close to 2000. The variety performers went to see him perform specifically to see how he would handle a large audience in a different setting. Their review..."He OWNED the audience." Livingston Taylor has written a book called Stage Performance. And yes, he has a brother named James.

Liebe Wetzel
From 1989 to 1998, Liebe Wetzel, the artist formerly known as Too Too Tomato, inhabited a variety of entertaining incarnations including puppeteer, mime, stiltwalker, and clown at a staggering number of fairs, festivals, and theaters throughout the west coast. In 1999 Wetzel debuted her now award-winning style of ordinary object puppetry with a collection of vignettes for adults, Naked Foam and Objects in Predicaments, written and performed by Wetzel with the assistance of director Jeff Raz on comediturgy and the helping hands of a small ensemble of manipulators. After playing to sold out houses and critical acclaim at the 1999 San Francisco Fringe Festival, Objects in Predicaments was redesigned as a children's Show which premiered at the Marsh Theater in Fall of 1999, and was reprised in Zeum's No Strings Festival. In 2000, as artistic director and head manipulator of Lunatique Fantastique, Wetzel created and performed in Snake in the Basement: The Prosecution of Rev. Bill Pruitt at the Exit theatre. When her SF Bay Guardian Goldie Award for best new theater talent was announced, Wetzel and her ensemble were already hard at work creating The Wrapping Paper Caper, a holiday-themed show for children and adults Which earned rave reviews and sold-out houses at il Teatro 450 in San Francisco's Union Square.

2001 was been an even busier year for Lunatique Fantastique. Lunatique Fantastique performed the original Snake in the Basement in January in New York City at the Currican and at Here. Wetzel mounted an expanded version of Snake in San Francisco at the Marsh in May and June. She created and directed Brace Yourself! which premiered in Dallas and then won Best of Fringe in the 2001 SF Fringe Festival. In between, she taught her unique puppetry style to teens in a residency program at Zeum, and to teen Shakespearean acting students at Cal Shakes' summer program. Lunatique Fantastique received a cash grant for Brace and a Zellerbach Family Fund grant for Snake. This holiday season, a generous donation from Papyrus supported the development of Another Wrapping Paper Caper at Zeum in December and January.

Moni Yakim

Moni Yakim began performing at age fourteen with the Massach Theatre in his native Jerusalem. In Paris, he studied with George Wilson at the Theatre Nationale Populaire, and with Tanya Bolashova. He studied mime with Marcel Marceau, and Etienne Decroux, in whose company he was a principal performer. In 1960, Mr. Yakim moved to the US and founded the New York Pantomime Theatre with his wife Mina. They also created the Performance Theatre Center, for which he- conceived, directed, and acted in many productions. Mr. Yakim directed the original production of Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well . . . Off-Broadway as well as on Broadway and abroad. He has directed at Yale Rep. and the American Shakespeare Festival (associate director), and has staged opera for the American Opera Center and the Metropolitan Opera Studio, among others. He created the movement for the movie Robocop, and its sequel, Robocop II.
 

As a teacher, Mr. Yakim has taught at the Stella Adler Conservatory, New York University, and Yale University, and has conducted master classes in Paris, Oslo, and Moscow. He currently teaches at the Circle in the Square Theatre School, The Juilliard Opera Center, and heads the movement department of the Juilliard Drama Division, where Mr. Yakim  has taught since its founding in 1967.  MotionFest attendees who plan on taking Mr. Yakim's workshop may want to prepare by reading a copy of his book, "Creating a Character: A Physical Approach to Acting."



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