Worlds Elsewhere Theatre Company Presents:
Friends, Romans, Netizens, lend us your ears!
It is a time of turbulence in Rome as Caesar is celebrating his victory over rival Pompey. Many are thrilled but some remain more skeptical of Caesar’s consolidation of power. How are the interests of Rome best served?
Director Meryl Federman leads Worlds Elsewhere theatre company in William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. Genderblind casting and “timeless” styling prompt us to take a fresh look at the responsibilities of those who hold power in a society.
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Company Artistic Statement
Theatre, given its nature as a medium made of people in space, has always been a first victim during times of plague.
When the COVID-19 pandemic spread through the world at the start of the year 2020, theatres closed, and millions were left unemployed.
Worlds Elsewhere Theatre Company was founded during this terrifying time. It is our mission to create theatre without a theatre — to create a space online that can serve as a theatrical one. Our company shall create an online space that serves the same function that theatre has served for millennia — as a place of catharsis and healing.
Worlds Elsewhere is pleased to present Julius Caesar on a pay-what-you-want basis. The first ticket option allows you to pay a minimum of $1.00 USD (+ processing fees).
If you would like to attend the talkback for our show featuring the director, producer, and a selection of cast members, choose the “+ Talkback” option and pay the minimum of $15.00 USD (+ processing fees). We will contact ticket holders who have chosen this option during intermission with the Zoom link to join the talkback after the show.
If you’re watching the recorded stream on-demand within a month of the original streaming date, you can still show your support by purchasing a “ticket” for the April 20th “show”.
[Tickets are available through Brown Paper Tickets!][tickets]
LAST MINUTE ENTHUSIASTS: If you’re at the live show and still want to attend the talkback, purchase a talkback ticket for the April 20th show before intermission.
We understand if you, like many people, are not in a position to offer your financial support at the moment; this is a difficult time. If that is the case and you would still like to support our mission, any of the following steps would be very welcome assistance:
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About This Production
There may be no Shakespeare play with more historical baggage than Julius Caesar. Since Abraham Lincoln’s administration, Americans have been processing their political landscape through its lens, the original assassination and Dante’s classic condemnation of it rendered through Shakespeare’s text. Shakespeare succeeds at making grand political gestures personal and visceral, but he withholds a judgment of Julius Caesar directly. Is Caesar’s ascendance a threat to Rome, or a great opportunity? And whose job should it be to address this either way? As our main characters navigate these questions, we see Brutus, Cassius, Antony, and Caesar display classical-tragic symptoms, and three suffer their final tragic fate in the play itself. No matter what “side” you’re on, misreading your moment and misapplying your skills is deadly. For this reason, Caesar feels most relevant not as a way to understand an inter-party fight, but an intra-party one. Quite simply, Julius Caesar feels like a high-stakes primary - where we may all roughly be on the same team, but we can disagree on tactics, ethics, a theory of change, and who should represent us. The potential for a truly great outcome can heighten a perceived loss. In a political landscape filled with allies (or potential allies), family, friends, and those we generally respect, setbacks and disagreements can feel magnified and extremely personal. This is not a play of righteous heroes and condemnable villains, not a play of one noble group and one immoral one, but of people asking “given my position, and the interesting times I’m living in, what must I do?” Our characters break themselves trying to answer this question, and through the ages this challenge has resonated with readers and audiences.
I humbly hope that this production strips away some of the baggage of this towering text, and that you see something new in our story of individuals struggling to understand their responsibilities in a political order that is still being formed.
~ Meryl Federman, Director
It is a time of turbulence in Rome as Caesar is celebrating his victory over rival Pompey. The people are thrilled, but tribunes Flavius and Marullus, as members of the political establishment, are more skeptical of Caesar’s consolidation of power. At the celebration, Caesar declines to heed a Soothsayer’s warning about the swiftly approaching Ides of March. Senator Caius Cassius, livid over Caesar’s ascendance, approaches close friend and fellow Senator Marcus Brutus, to see if he shares this anxiety - Brutus does, and Cassius all but asks Brutus to join an assassination plot. The night before the Ides of March, a supernaturally-charged storm batters Rome as the conspirators gather at Brutus’ house to plan their attack. They decide to kill Caesar in the Senate, but decline to pursue Caesar’s allies, including Mark Antony. After the group leaves, Brutus’ wife Portia demands to know what Brutus is doing, but he is interrupted by the arrival of another conspirator before he can tell her. The next morning, Caesar’s wife Calpurnia almost convinces her husband to not leave the house based on all the supernatural portents, but conspirator Decius Brutus re-interprets her concerns and Caesar decides to go. Despite another warning from the Soothsayer, Caesar continues to the Senate, where he is killed. Brutus is planning to explain the act to the frightened populace when Antony arrives and asks for a chance to speak at Caesar’s funeral. Brutus agrees despite Cassius’ objections, saying that having Antony involved in this event will make it more effective. Brutus speaks to the crowd about why he killed Caesar, apparently convincing them that the assassination was justified. Antony then speaks to the crowd and aggressively turns the tables, riling them into a vengeful rage. The conspirators are run out of Rome.
Caesar’s heir Octavius has returned to Rome, now allied with Antony and Lepidus. The new triumvirate plans a grand-scale killing of their political enemies including much of the Senate, and prepares to meet Brutus and Cassius on the battlefield. Brutus and Cassius have a fight over ethics and tactics that threatens their alliance and friendship, but Brutus agrees to disagree in the end. Brutus tells Cassius that Portia committed suicide after they were run out of Rome, rendering Cassius too thrown to object to Brutus’ battle plan effectively, and they decide to take their stand at Philippi. Caesar’s ghost appears to Brutus in the night. At a key point in the battle, Cassius mistakenly believes he and Brutus have lost and kills himself, as does ally Titinius after finding Cassius dead. The battle quickly turns against Brutus in earnest, and Brutus commits suicide as well. Antony and Octavius plan to honor Brutus in death.
Cast and Crew
Laurel Andersen (Brutus; they/them/she/her) is an NYC-based actor, thrilled for their Worlds Elsewhere debut! NYC includes: Romeo and Juliet (as Juliet; with Match: Lit); Twelfth Night (as Viola); Waiting for Lefty (Isle of Shoals); A Short Life of Trouble (Everyday Inferno); The Coward (NYC Fringe); The Drunk Texts (Random Access…) and world premieres of All One Forest (Occupy Verona/Barefoot Shakespeare), The Table Round/The Siege Perilous (Turn to Flesh Productions) and The Other, Other Woman (also TTF). Regional: The Resolute, Hollywood Arms, and two repertory seasons with Adirondack Shakespeare. Laurel also directs and writes songs & plays! laurelandersen.com @laurelmrc on Twitter and Instagram
Matthew Tiemstra (Cassius; he/him) is chuffed to be a part of this space-defying production and his Worlds Elsewhere debut! Selected credits: NYC: The Clockwork Boy (Writer/Producer), Hamlet (Hamlet). Regional: 1776 (Thomas Jefferson), Sterling Renaissance Festival (Mud Beggar). Film: Agda Turning to Stone (Evening Crane Theater), Bloody Donny’s Fingers (Timestar Pictures). Thanks to all the loyal conspirators in my life. I know now more than ever you would take up daggers for me in a second, and I would do the same for every one of you. www.matthewtiemstra.com
Alexandra Vernon (Casca; she/her) is incredibly excited to return to the Worlds Elsewhere stage. She is a New York City-based performer. She is currently the lead singer for her ukulele punk band, Refractory Period. She is also debuting two new shows on YouTube next month: her own personal channel, Alex V, as well as Solar Flair, a weekly virtual variety show on YouTube Live. For more info, please check out her Linktree.
Lucas Alifano (Decius Brutus; he/him) has worked theatrically with The American Conservatory Theater, The Marin Theater Company, The Magic Theater, TheaterWorks, Marin Shakespeare Company, Primary Stages, Show Palace Theater, Colorado Shakespeare Festival, Ruckus Rockwell, The Ruskin Theater, The Western Stage, Sacred Fools Theater, and Shakespeare Santa Cruz, among others. He starred opposite Joan Rivers in The Joan Rivers Theater Project, which was performed in New York and San Francisco. TV credits include the CBS series Ghost Whisperer: The Other Side 2 and The Young and the Restless, among others. Feature credits include The Lost Coast (SXSW & Venice Film Festival), Plastic Soup, Detention, and the horror thriller Fear Not. Lucas is a proud member of Equity, holds an M.F.A. from The American Conservatory Theater, and is co-founder of The Unknown Artists.
A printer technician and aspiring voice actor originally from Michigan, Morgan Stutler (Metellus Cimber/Cicero/Soldier 1; he/him) moved to Richmond Virginia in early 2018 and has been happy to join Worlds Elsewhere as he works towards a proper presence online. A student of Italian swordsmanship and martial arts, a gamer, LARPer, singer, and student of history, Morgan is reachable on Twitter at @MrMorphine482.
Grady W. Smithey III (Cinna/Lepidus/Dardanius; he/him) has played the Magistrate in Lysistrata and Snout in A Midsummer Night’s Charity Stream for Worlds Elsewhere, Arnold in Sinatra for A Light In Dark Places, Kokol in Marat/Sade for L.I.P. Service, and Grumpy Old Manchild in The Cartoon Physicist’s Very Late 2nd Anniversary. He is at least 63.1% water. @snakebitcat
In between his work as a writer, video producer, and teacher, Henry Kathman (Caius Ligarius/Antony’s Servant/Soldier 2; he/him) has been proud to be a part of the Worlds Elsewhere productions of A Midsummer Night’s Charity Stream, Lysistrata, and the 2020 Winter Cabaret. If you are interested in seeing more from Henry, you can find more of his work on his YouTube channel, where he writes about everything from Moomin to the Moral Philosophy. You can also find him on The Pink Aisle Podcast, where he and Emma Corry examine our complex relationship with Barbie and other girl-oriented properties through the lens of their films. For more updates, you can check the hellsite for him at @kathmanhenry.
Emily Clark (Caesar; she/her) is an LA-based actor, director, singer, and teacher. Creator of Stealing Focus, Musical Theatre History lessons and reviews on YouTube. Worlds Elsewhere: Lysistrata (Female Chorus), A Midsummer Night’s Charity Stream (Titania). Notable performances: Skullduggery: The Musical Prequel to Hamlet (Berta), The Taming of the Shrew (Biondello), Jane Austen’s Emma Frankenstein (Emma), Mr. Burns: a post-electric play (Edna, LA Premiere), The Art Couple (Angelique/Rodin), Annie (Miss Hannigan). Graduate of UC Santa Cruz, Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, and the Upright Citizens Brigade. Artistic Director of The Unknown Artists, Sacred Fools Theater Company Associate Member. @emilyabclark
Eduardo J. Pérez-Torres (Antony; he/him) is a medical student and neuroscientist, who will be heading to a residency in adult neurology in the coming year. In his free time, he spends a surprising amount of time pretending to be other people… Or demons… Mostly demons… He is exceedingly grateful to Meryl and Worlds Elsewhere for the opportunity to be a part of this production. And he is extraordinarily thankful to you for lending him your ears. You may pick them up at the front of the house after the show. @eperezpr
James Ketelaar (Octavius; he/him) is an actor currently based in Charleston, SC. This is his 3rd production with Worlds Elsewhere, after appearing in A Midsummer Night’s Charity Stream (Oberon) and Lysistrata (Polycharides). When he’s not performing here, James can be found recording his real-play podcast, Dangerous Times at Chillhaven High, with new episodes out every Tuesday! Follow James on Twitter at @docprofessorman, and follow his show @ChillhavenHigh!
Kelly Blaze (Calpurnia/Citizen 2; she/her) is thrilled to be joining Worlds Elsewhere Theatre Company’s production of Julius Caesar. She lives in Queens, and patiently awaits the return of acting in the same room as a scene partner and happily being a part of a massive audience. She misses awkward acquaintance hugs, and even being stuck under a stranger’s arm on a crowded train (short people problems). She would like to thank everyone who continues to wear their masks, and her perfect cat, Eevee, who likely crashed this performance.
Laura Crone (Portia; she/her) is an actress/video essayist/amateur stunt performer/aerialist/aspiring dog mom based out of Los Angeles. This is her third production with Worlds Elsewhere, where she has also played Hermia (A Midsummer Night’s Charity Stream) and Myrrhini (Lysistrata). Other favorite credits include Lilith (She Kills Monsters, Available Light), Shere Khan (The Jungle Book, CATCO Is Kids), Mopsa (The Winter’s Tale, Actors’ Theatre of Columbus), and Stephen Sondheim (The Marxist Genius of Sweeney Todd, David J. Bradley). You can find her talking about film and feelings on YouTube and Nebula. (@down_w_lcc on Twitter, @thelccwontletyoube on Instagram)
Terra Warman (Lucius; no pronouns) fronts the space opera synth band Terra and the Dactyls. Terra is an immersive theatre designer, production manager, and composer, and in the old world worked on Third Rail Project’s Then She Fell, Sinking Ship Creations’ Project Ascension, The Mortality Machine, White Death, Scapegoat, and New World Magischola Prep. Terra is also an EMT and Medical Assistant at Netflix and testing centers about the city. Terra loves Bennie, the world’s greatest pet fish. @waronearth @tandtheds
Baakari Wilder (Flavius/Publius/Citizen 4/Clitus; he/him) is excited to make his debut at Worlds Elsewhere Theatre Company in their production of Julius Caesar. DC credits include Pipeline at Studio Theater; The Few at Unexpected Stage; Unexplored Interior at Mosaic Theater; “Master Harold”… and the boys at Bay Theater; The Water Engine at Spooky Action Theater. Broadway credit: Bring in ‘da Noise, Bring in ‘da Funk at Ambassador Theater.
Excited to make his Worlds Elsewhere debut, Justin Bailey (Soothsayer/Messenger/Strato; he/him) he has never been afraid to try something new just because he’s never done it before. That’s what makes it new, right? The majority of his previous acting has been volunteer or hobby-based, the most prominent of which being a crew member of Haunted Overload in New Hampshire, which he has done off and on for over a decade. Special thanks to Marjorie Mersereau, for helping give him the acting bug in the first place.
Jamie McConnaughy (Marullus/Citizen 1/Messala; she/her) is a 31-year-old cinephile, who still can’t believe how lucky she is to get to work with all of her talented co-stars. Her Twitter account is found @elessar42, and she posts there frequently about Lord of the Rings, The X-Files, whatever movie she’s thinking of at that moment, and a frankly distressing amount of politics. Her tumblr is football-in-tuxedos, and that’s basically the same stuff.
Christi Esterle (Titinius/Citizen 3; she/her) is thrilled to be doing her first show with Worlds Elsewhere, and her first acting gig in
[redacted]! When not supporting the plot to overthrow Caesar, she can be found hosting
Musical Hell on YouTube, on the podcasts
Once More With Dragons and
The Dear Friends Podcast, and trying to be a travel agent in the middle of a pandemic. Her other claim to fame is appearing on Jeopardy in 2014 and pretending to be clever for
a few days. @MusicalHell @christiesterlecp
Sam Marchiony (Lucilius/Caesars’ Servants; she/her) previously appeared in Worlds Elsewhere’s productions of A Midsummer Night’s Charity Stream (Philostrate) and Lysistrata (Ismenia). When not trodding the virtual boards, she runs La Femme Fictionale, a YouTube channel dedicated to feminist media criticism and smashing the kyriarchy. In addition to subscribing to her channel, you can follow her on Twitter (@FemmeFictionale). She has about 20 different projects in various stages of development, but doesn’t want to jinx the progress on any of them by talking about them in detail. So, instead, she wants to leave you with this message: fascism delenda est.
Niall Sulcer (Pindarus/Trebonius/Commoner; he/him) is an actor/director/writer/student, and he is thrilled to be making his Worlds Elsewhere debut in Julius Caesar! Some of his favorite roles from past work include: Noble (All’s Well That Ends Well), Pirithous (Two Noble Kinsmen), and Helicanus (Pericles), all at Loyola Marymount. He is passionate about making new, classic art that connects us to our past. @niallnotniles
Meryl Federman (Director; she/her) is an NY-based TV/film accountant, but would be a professional Shakespeare nerd if that were a job. She is so thankful for this opportunity to be directing her favorite Shakespeare play with this amazing group, and can’t wait to embrace all the huggers on the team in person! Her screen name and Twitter handle has, for real, always been @Cassius614, but she promises no favoritism of one character over another throughout this process. WETC Credits: Lysander, _A Midsummer Night’s Charity Stream; _Producer, Lysistrata.
Bex Silberfein (Assistant Director; she/her) is thrilled to once again assist with a Worlds Elsewhere production. She would like to thank Meryl and Dave for trusting her and educating her about The Spanish Tragedy, the cast for being so lovely, and Willy Shakes for the incredible words. Julius Caesar was the first Shakespeare play she ever read, and it has been a joy for her to revisit. She can be found at @Bex_Silberfein and @MeddlingMeddy. Let’s get stabby!
David Kowarsky (Producer; he/him) is a voiceover artist, bari-bass vocalist, director/producer of audiodrama, and a co-founder of Worlds Elsewhere Theatre Company. He wants everyone to know that it’s OK if you’ve lost track of some things in the past year, and is confident you’ll find them again. By day, he leverages his Folklore and Mythology degree as a production manager at Cornerstone OnDemand in their Studios division, producing world-class learning content for a global client base of over 7000 companies.
Ilana Greenberg-Sud (Assistant Producer; she/her/they/them) is physically incapable of taking a break, which is why she has the honor of working on this show. In addition to helping found Worlds Elsewhere, she made her directorial re-debut in October ‘20 with Lysistrata, and produced A Midsummer Night’s Charity Stream and the 2020 Winter Cabaret. She is forever grateful and inspired to work with such a talented group of performers. She doesn’t intentionally have a small social media footprint, but her continued hiatus from Twitter has been very restful.
Dodger of Zion’s (Technical Director; she/her) last technical work was for Worlds Elsewhere’s 2020 Winter Cabaret. She is also responsible for the spawning of the “Hail the Cone” meme. She streams on Twitch.tv, and is the Philadelphia sports contributor to the weekly YouTube sports podcast The Dumpster Fire. When she’s not streaming or pushing buttons to bring virtual theatre to the world, she can be found playing Animal Crossing, yelling at football, and planting potatoes.
Mike Fatum (Fight Choreographer; he/him) is a host of the Ace of Geeks Podcast, a wonderful excuse for four best friends to hang out and talk about the culture that shapes us. He’s also the Community Manager for Star Trek Online, and a sword fight choreographer and theatre director in the Bay Area. Black Lives Matter, Trans Rights Are Human Rights. Teach kids compassion early, and put an end to bullying once and for all. You can find him on Twitter @VengeanceGOD.
Regina Russell (Casting Associate) is a New York-based actress, writer, and director. Originally hailing from the Bronx and a graduate of Cornell University (B.A. Theatre Arts) and East 15 Acting School in London (M.F.A Acting), Regina’s favorite recent roles include: LCDR Talise Asherah, Primordial Deep; Trainee, Brimstone Valley Mall; Evelyn Wesley, Unwell a Midwestern Gothic Mystery; Lysistrata, Lysistrata; Lysander, A Midsummer Night’s Dream; and Helena, A Midsummer Night’s Charity Stream. @reggirenee; @reginarenee594; Backstage
Laura Varela (Social Media Coordinator; she/her) is a social media specialist, originally from Buenos Aires, Argentina, now based in New York. Her experience includes B2B communications and marketing for IBM, Broadway and Off-Broadway publicity for Polk & Company, and social media for a variety of independent theatre companies all over the state; she mainly specializes in branding, copywriting, graphic design, and content creation. Laura graduated Magna Cum Laude from SUNY Oneonta in 2018, and is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in digital marketing with the Zicklin School of Business at Baruch College. You can also find Laura on LinkedIn.
Executive Director — Kyle Kallgren
Producer — David Kowarsky
Producer — Ilana Greenberg-Sud
Technical Director — Dodger of Zion
Social Media Director — Laura Varela
Web Development — Adrianne Greenberg-Sud
Audio, Music, and Image Attributions
Show Banner Art by Nathaniel Koven
Assasination sound: “Dramatic Buildup Horror Ambiance” by Audio_Dread.
“Crowd Cheers” integrate elements by Freesound Users Xtragamer and YleArkisto.
Other Sounds provided by Freesound, under CC0, Public Domain, or Licensed through Adobe/Apple.
All other images sourced through CC0, Public Domain, or licensed without need for attribution. Many thanks to Pixabay.
“Brandenburg Concerto No. 4 in G, Movement I (Allegro), BWV 1049”, written by Johann Sebastian Bach, performed by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com), Licensed under CC-BY 4.0
“Gymnopedie No. 1”, written by Erik Satie, performed by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com), Licensed under CC-BY 4.0
“Exciting Trailer” by Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com), Licensed under CC-BY 4.0