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2017 Cast Bios and Season Cast Lists

Man of La Mancha
Company Biographies

Alex Santoriello (Cervantes/Don Quixote) is a professional actor, singer and producer best known for originating roles in three Broadway musicals: Les Miserables, Chess, and Three Penny Opera and as a producer on the Broadway musical, A Tale of Two Cities. Alex made his equity debut at the Paper Mill Playhouse and his New York debut at AMAS Repertory Theater. He played Gus the Theater Cat in a Broadway tour of Cats and Pontius Pilate in two major touring productions of Jesus Christ Superstar. Alex produced and directed the world premiere of A Tale of Two Cities in concert at the Circle Theater in Indianapolis that included a cast of Broadway veterans along with Richard Kiley who narrated the action, a fifty-voice choir and a forty-piece orchestra. He has appeared in the TV soap opera All My Children and in the Academy Award nominated film Far From Heaven. A successful concert career brought Alex to Barbados. After several returns Alex moved there and taught singing to young people and served as the first musical director of the Barbados National Boys Choir. He fronted the popular rock ‘n roll band “GetBak” and performed at over one-hundred charity events including the reopening of the historic Kensington Oval in Bridgetown and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Gala. He founded Lexy Piano Bar, which was rated by Zagat as one of Barbados’ top five night spots. Alex is a licensed commercial pilot, an active flight instructor and an avid sailor who has logged thousands of miles at sea. Alex performed and worked with Sirs Sting, Cliff Richard, Tim Rice, Cameron Macintosh & Trevor Nunn; Benny Anderson & Bjorn Ulveaus (ABBA); John Caird, John Dexter, Andrew Wilk, John Lodge, Dennis Quaid, David Cassidy, Richard Kiley, Michael Crawford, Maureen McGovern, Georgia Brown, Ted Neeley, Carl Anderson, Colm Wilkinson, Claude Michel Schoenberg, Alain Boublil, John Clifton, Neil Berg and his sister Jill Santoriello.

Deb Saxe (Aldonza/Dulcinia) is thrilled to be involved in Man of La Mancha with such a dedicated and talented cast, crew and production staff. You may recognize Deb from previous roles at the Barn including Marta in Company and Edward Rutledge in 1776. Other notable roles include Tracy Turnblad in Hairspray, Sarraghina in Nine and director of A New Brain. Off stage, Deb is a history major at Penn State and enjoys studying (yes, really), devouring biographies and watching documentaries. She’d like to thank the cast, crew and production staff of Man of La Mancha, especially Dave and Alex for trusting her. Shout out to Mo and Matt for being 5ever baes (that means more than forever).

Dave Saxe (Sancho Panza) serves as the Barn’s Producing Artistic Director, where he has directed Always Patsy Cline, the world’s first-all-female production of 1776, Calendar Girls, Play Murder, Church Basement Ladies, Looking, and Mae. Under his pen­name Sterling Sax, Dave also wrote the book­music­lyrics for Betty Crocker, Kinsey, Rock n’ Roll, Play Murder, and this season’s hit Treasure Island. A veteran theatre guy, Dave has produced, directed, and acted in some one hundred productions since 1975! His Barn roles include Gomez in The Addams Family, a bunch of cameos in All Shook Up, and Ben Gunn in Treasure Island. At The State Theatre, Dave wrote and directed Swearing Off Women and The Royal Gilberts and presented the celebrated “Fred Waring Trilogy” of “live radio” performed at the Shawnee Playhouse. His other Nittany Theatre productions include The Foreigner and NTC’s sold­out hit Love, Sex, and the I.R.S. Other recent stage performances include Love, Sex, and the I.R.S. and 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, John Adams in 1776 at PSU’s Pavilion Theatre and Horace in Hello Dolly at the Eisenhower. While on Fullbright, Dave also appeared as Father Moynihan in Jenny Kissed Me at the Regensburg Theatre (Germany). A former Actors Equity performer from Chicago, in his “youth” he had the pleasure of playing the Rodger’s and Hammerstein book of Oklahoma (Curley), Carousel (Billy, Jigger, Mr. Snow), South Pacific (Lt. Cable), and Sound of Music (Franz the Butler!). While not at the Barn, he can be found as the resident American history professor­nut at Penn State where he teaches American Heritage. Dave dedicates the season to the Barn’s hard working casts, staff and crew for their patience, understanding, and dedication. Love to Laura, Dan, Andy, Deb, and Kaye!

Mercer Bristow (Governor/Innkeeper) is pleased to have worked on many productions at the Barn since 2004, most recently appearing in Betty Crocker, Kinsey and Rock n Roll as the Narrator. He usually choosing plays that are presented in 90-degree weather. Mercer’s daytime job is as Authentication Director of the American Philatelic Society headquarters located in Bellefonte.

Frank Wilson (Padre) attended Penn State in Theatre Arts, with a major in Broadcasting. He then went on to receive a Masters Degree in Speech, as well as a Ph.D. in Education. In those early days at PSU, he appeared in many productions for The University Theatre, Penn State Thespians, and State College Community Theatre. His life has been a constant mixture of theatre and video production ever since. Some of his favorite acting rolls have included Oz in The Wizard of Oz, Col. Henry Blake in MASH, Oscar Madison in The Odd Couple, Captain Keller in The Miracle Worker, Nicely Nicely Johnson in Guys and Dolls, Fagin in Oliver, Harold Hill in The Music Man, and Matt and both Fathers in multiple productions of The Fantasticks. Most recently, he has appeared in his one-man show, Mark Twain: Life Stories and Other Lies, Colonel Pickering in My Fair Lady, and Captain Smollett in the original production of Treasure Island right here in the Barn. Offstage, Frank is a creative writer and instructional designer for the Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness at Penn State, developing videos, animations, and other program materials that help military families transition through the military experience.

Andrew Saxe (Duke/Doctor Carrasco/Knight of the Mirrors) serves as technical director and lighting and sound designer for the Barn and occasionally finds himself on stage. His Barn appearances include All Shook Up, Calendar Girls, Play Murder, and Treasure Island. You may also remember him as the quiet Lurch from the Barn’s first season’s Addams Family. Some of his favorite roles include; Lesley from Love, Sex and the I.R.S, Jimmy from Thoroughly Modern Millie and Barnaby and Cornelius from Hello, Dolly! He would like to thank you for supporting Nittany Theatre and the rebirth of the Barn. Enjoy the show!

Kaitlyn Whitesell (Antonia/Moorish Dancer) is a rising sophomore in the BFA in Acting program at Penn State. She is excited to be returning to the Barn and getting to share the stage again with her awesome momma! Some of Kaitlyn’s favorite credits include: Beauty and the Beast (Belle), Guys and Dolls (Sarah Brown) and High School Musical (Gabriella). She would like to thank the cast and crew for making this show a fun and unforgettable experience!

Laura Ann Saxe (Housekeeper/Moor/Mule) is delighted to work her third season at the Barn where she has appeared in Always Patsy Cline, 1776 (as John Adams), Betty Crocker, Kinsey, and Rock n’ Roll, The Addams Family, Company (as Joan), Twelve Angry Men (Juror #3), Calendar Girls (as Annie), Play Murder, and Treasure Island. A former Actors Equity actress from Chicago, where she met hubby Dave, Laura had the opportunity to co-star with Broadway’s Mark Jacoby as Carla in Nine. At the famous Candlelight Playhouse Laura played Sarah Brown in Guys and Dolls, completed a one-year stint as Grace Farrell in Annie, Sonja in Playing Our Song, among dozens of other musicals. Most recently was seen as Judith in the world premiere of Swearing Off Women at the State Theatre. Also at the State, Laura was seen in Annie and Scrooge, as well as Nittany Theatre’s premiere of The Royal Gilberts. Other favorites with the Nittany Theatre Company include The Foreigner and the celebrated Fred Waring Radio Show series performed at the Shawnee Playhouse in the Poconos. Laura’s past Barn appearances include Rona in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Kate in Kiss Me Kate, Glenda in The Wizard and Oz, and Mrs. Boyle in The Mousetrap. Other roles of note include Abigail Adams in 1776 at Penn State’s Pavillion Theatre. Laura also appeared in several shows at Penn State’s Eisenhower Theatre including My Fair Lady, Guys and Dolls, The Nutcracker, and Dolly in Hello Dolly! Being a part of the founding members of Nittany Theatre at the Barn has been an all-consuming whirlwind from salvaging (and then restoring) theatre seats from the grand old Garman Opera House, to cleaning and painting just about everything in sight (whew!), and then squeezing in time for rehearsing, it has been, every minute, a complete labor of love. Laura would like to send special thanks to the entire company and crew and her family.

Jeff Buterbaugh (Barber/Anselmo/Knight/Guard) is a lifelong resident of State College and a current student at Penn State. He has been performing in regional theatre for nearly a decade and is delighted to be making working at Nittany Theatre at the Barn where he has appeared in Calendar Girls, Play Murder, and Treasure Island. Some of his recent credits include Gangster 2 in The Drowsy Chaperone, Mr. Goldstone in Gypsy, Johnny Casino in Grease, and Mikey in Hairspray, Gene Gorman in Stephen Sondheim’s Saturday Night. Jeff also was seen as Frederick Dickens in a special production of A Christmas Carol a s part of Bellefonte Victorian Christmas and was a featured choral vocalist in a concert by Jodi Benson, the voice of Ariel in Disney’s The Little Mermaid.

Adam Hunter (Pedro/Guard) is thrilled to be returning to the Barn where he performed in Twelve Angry Men and All Shook Up. Having just returned from a semester abroad studying theatre in London, England, Adam studies theatre at Penn State. His recent acting credits include Ty in Good Kids with Penn State’s Centre Stage and Frank Jr. in Catch Me If You Can and Lancelot in Spamalot with Penn State Thespians.

Kevin Davis (Captain/Knight/Jose) is a relative newbie to the theatre world, making his debut in 2016 in The Wedding Singer (SCCT). He then went on to be the jury foreman in the Barn’s production of Twelve Angry Men later that year. This year his Barn credits include roles in Treasure Island and is very excited to be part of the cast of Man of La Mancha.

Stephanie Whitesell (Fermina/Horse/Moor) is no stranger to the Barn Stage! Stephanie was an apprentice at the Barn in the late 90s, when she cultivated her love of live theatre. Stephanie was last seen at the Barn portraying John Hancock in the all-female version of 1776. Stephanie’s previous (and some of her favorite roles) include; Roo in Winnie the Pooh, Abigail in The Crucible, Audrey II Puppeteer in Little Shop of Horrors and Ann Putnam in The Crucible. She is so excited to be returning to the stage after a year off and to share it with her beautiful and talented daughter, Kaitlyn Whitesell! Much love and thanks to Ben (my rock and biggest fan), Crystal, and, always, Mom and Dad for encouraging the arts from a very early age! Here’s to an amazing stage family, as well! Break all the legs! “The theatre was created to tell people the truth about life and the social situation.” – Stella Adler. Thanks for coming and I hope you all enjoy the show!

Katie Pennington-Rimmer (Maria/Moor) is honored to be back for the third season at Nittany Theatre at the Barn. Katie spent most of her adult life in South Africa as a gospel artist and session singer. She toured also with the late Ray Pheri and Stimela. Katie was honored to be crown Miss Michigan 1982 in the Miss America contest (where she won the swim suit competition!). She calls herself miss-elaneous now. After moving back to the USA in 2007 she has performed in many productions such as Annie, Sound of Music, Oliver. With Class Act Productions: A Christmas Carol, Anne of Green Gables, We Will Remember. Nittany Theatre Company: Royal Gilberts, Swearin off Women, 1776, All Shook Up, Addams Family, Church Basement Ladies and now Man of La Mancha. Her greatest achievement to date is her beloved children… Kymberly, Grace and Bjorn. Special thanks to her husband and sweetheart Tom who lets her pursue her dreams and live at THE BARN all summer!

Rob Arnold (Paco/Guard/Moor) is excited to perform in his 2nd show with Nittany theater at the Barn, the first being 2015’s The Addams Family. Past roles include Underling in The Drowsy Chaperone. Lord Savage in Jekyll & Hyde, Moonface Martin in Anything Goes, Patsy in Monty Python’s Spamalot, Horton in Seussical: the Musical, Jack/Stephanie in Leading Ladies, James Wilson in 1776 and Albin/Zaza in La Cage aux Folles. Originally from Pittsburgh, Rob attended Penn State pursuing a degree in English Education with a minor in Theater. When not on stage, Rob can be found managing the VWR Stockroom in the Chemistry Building at Penn State. Rob would like to thank his husband Michael for his continued love and support.

Rod Egan (Tenorio/Moor) Following completion of an archeological dig in southern Libya and a successful six-week engagement at Caesars Palace in Vegas. Rod decompressed by solo sailing the Atlantic before beginning this gig. Rod’s Barn credits include, Betty Crocker, Kinsey, n’ Rock and Roll, All Shook Up, Play Murder, Church Basement Ladies, and Treasure Island. During his quieter times, Rod and wife Beth live in the suburbs of Boalsburg, with aged cat and two high energy border collies. Their daughters have gone on to more exciting places. Rod has been known to include alternative facts in these bios.

Rebecca Koch (Stage Manager/Props Mistress) is a rising sophomore at IUP for theater. She has worked on several Barn productions in the past. In the 2016 season she worked on Twelve Angry Men and All Shook Up as Assistant Stage Manager, and as Assistant Stage Manager and board operator for Calendar Girls. This season she has worked as Stage Manager on Greater Tuna, and as Stage Manager and Props Mistress for Treasure Island. Shout out to her parents and her sibling for putting up with her Barn hours.

Marcelyn Lebovitz (Musical Director/Associate Stage Manager) is a 5th year student at Penn State, pursuing a major in music and a minor in theatre arts. She has been performing for many years, but she started her backstage career as the makeup artist for Penn State Opera Theatre’s “Impressions of Pelleas”. She has greatly enjoyed her time at the Barn this summer!

Trinity Lear (Technical Specialist (lights & sound) is a rising Senior at the Hollidaysburg Area High School. She has been working backstage for four years and has spent the last year running lights through six shows in the Altoona area. This her first season with the Barn and has had an amazing time working with all the amazing actors and staff! Trinity wants to thank Andrew Saxe for teaching her as much as he has this season and her mother for dealing with the long drive that is from Hollidaysburg to Boalsburg.

2017 Nittany Theatre Summer Stock CAST LISTS

 

Church Basement Ladies (April 25-May 10)
Vivian: Katie Rimmer
Mavis: Sandi Rockwell
Karin: Alicia Rodriguez
Signe: Tara Mattes
Pastor Gunderson: Rod Egan

 

Greater Tuna (May 23- June 10)
Actor #1: Dave Saxe
Actor #2: Andrew Saxe

 

Treasure Island (June 20-July 8)

Jane/Jim Hawkins: Hannah Richardson
Mrs. Hawkins/O’Brien: Laura Ann Saxe
Doctor Livesey/Mr. Arrow: Kevin Davis
Squire Trelawney: Russ Rockwell
George Merry: Jeff Buterbaugh
Black Dog: Andrew Saxe
Israel Hands: Eric Ziegler
Captain Smollett: Frank Wilson
Long John Silver: Alex Santoriello
Ben Gunn/Blind Pew: Dave Saxe

 

Man of La Mancha (July 18-August 5)
Don Quixote/Cervantes: Alex Santoriello
Aldonza: Deb Saxe
Sancho: Dave Saxe
Governor/Innkeeper: Mercer Bristow
Duke/Dr. Carasco/Knight of the Mirrors: Andrew Saxe
Padre: Frank Wilson
Antonia/Moorish Dancer: Kaitlyn Whitesell
The Housekeeper/Gypsy: Laura Ann Saxe
The Barber/Jose/Knight: Jeff Buterbaugh
Anselmo/Pedro/Knight: Adam Hunter
Juan/Captain of the Inquisition: Kevin Davis
Tenorio/Knight: Rod Egan
Paco/Knight: Rob Arnold
Fermina/Gypsy: Stephanie Whitesell
Maria: Katie Rimmer

 

Looking (August 17-September 2)
Val: Laura Ann Saxe
Nina: Jocelyn Kotary
Andy: John Koch
Matt: Andrew Saxe

 

Mae (September 12-16)
Mae: Shawna Harrington