Artistic Staff Bios
KENNETH JONES (Playwright) is a playwright, librettist, lyricist and journalist. Alabama Storywas a 2014 Finalist in the National Playwrights Conference of the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, and enjoyed development by Pioneer Theatre Company (Play-By-Play New Play Series), Alabama Shakespeare Festival (Southern Writers’ Project) and Off-Broadway’s TACT/The Actors Company Theatre (NewTACTics Festival of New Plays). His musicalNaughty/Nice (with composer Gerald Stockstill) was a semi-finalist in the National Alliance for Musical Theatre’s Festival of New Musicals and was most recently seen in concert at Caroline’s On Broadway. His O. Henry-inspired musical Voice of the City (with composer Elaine Chelton) was read by York Theatre Company and Ohio’s Human Race Theatre Company. Award: 2010 Dottie Burman Songwriting Award from Manhattan Association of Cabarets and Clubs (MAC). He is a member of the Dramatists Guild, BMI and the Advanced BMI-Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop. Visit ByKennethJones.com. This play is for my parents.
KAREN AZENBERG (Director) This marks Karen’s third season as Artistic Director here at PTC. Last season she directed Something’s Afoot, A Few Good Men and Sweet Charity. In previous seasons as a guest artist, she directed Next to Normal (regional premiere), Rent andMiss Saigon, and she created the musical staging for the record-breaking 2007 production ofLes Misérables. Originally from New York, her work there includes Lyrics and Lyricists (92nd St. Y), Blocks (a collaboration with Jonathan Larson), Prom Queens Unchained, and choreography for Richard Greenberg’s The Dazzle (Roundabout). Other credits include national tours ofCarousel and Brigadoon, Neil Simon’s Laughter on the 23rd Floor (Regional Theatre Premiere at Geva), West Side Story (over 15 productions; Drama-Logue Award for Outstanding Choreography), A Christmas Memory (Alabama Shakespeare Festival), and Same Time Next Year (Indiana Repertory Theatre). This summer she will be choreographing Mary Poppins for the Alabama Shakespeare Festival. Karen is on the board of the New York Musical Theatre Festival and is a past president of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society.
JAMES NOONE (Scenic Designer) has worked for some of NYC’s most prestigious theatre companies including Playwrights Horizons, Manhattan Theatre Club, Lincoln Center Theatre, Roundabout Theatre Company and numerous others. Off-Broadway he designed the original productions of Terrance McNally’s Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune, Edward Albee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play Three Tall Women, the long-running solo shows Full Gallop and Fully Committed, Cowgirls and Breaking Legs, A Bronx Tale, Boys in the Band and the musicalRuthless. Broadway productions include Jekyll and Hyde, Class Act, The Persians, Judgment at Nuremberg, Night Must Fall, The Sunshine Boys, The Gin Game, A Bronx Tale and Come Back Little Sheba. He has designed national tours and at leading regional theatres across the country. His work in opera has been seen at Glimmerglass, NYC Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Washington National Opera, and others. For television he designed Sweeney Todd, Candide,Passion, Camelot, Stephen Sondheim’s 80th Birthday Concert for PBS, and Company, seen in select movie theaters. Awards include the Drama Desk, American Theatre Wing Design Award, two Helen Hayes Awards (DC), the LA Ovation Award, and two NAACP Theatre Design Awards.
BRENDA VAN DER WIEL (Costume Designer) is happy to be designing again for PTC. As costume shop manager for the University of Utah’s Theatre Department, Brenda has designed several dozen shows for the Babcock Theatre and the Classical Greek Theater Festival. Some favorites include designs for The Tempest, The Merchant of Venice and Libation Bearers. Some favorite designs for PTC include Emma, Rent, The Foreigner, You Can’t Take It With You andOne Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Favorite recent work for the Alabama Shakespeare Festival includes The Great Gatsby, Macbeth, Merry Wives of Windsor and Much Ado About Nothing. Brenda also frequently designs for Salt Lake Acting Company. Before moving to Salt Lake City, Brenda worked with Seattle Opera, Santa Fe Opera and the Utah Shakespeare Festival.
PHIL MONAT (Lighting Designer) designed previous PTC productions of Man Of La Mancha,Annie, White Christmas, Hamlet, Touch(ed), My Fair Lady, Paint Your Wagon, Five Guys Named Moe, Chicago, Copenhagen, Ragtime, Anything Goes, Steel Magnolias and Alexandre Dumas and the Lady of the Camelias. He has designed over 475 productions in regional theatres throughout the country, including productions at The Old Globe in San Diego, The Seattle Repertory Theatre, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Milwaukee Rep, The Alliance Theatre, The Arizona Theatre Co., The Mark Taper Forum, La Jolla Playhouse, The Huntington Theatre, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Cleveland Playhouse, Studio Arena Theatre, Syracuse Stage, Pittsburgh Public Theatre, Geva Theatre, Great Lakes Theatre Festival, McCarter Theatre, The Alley Theatre of Houston, Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Paper Mill Playhouse and The Goodspeed Opera, among others. Broadway designs include Legends starring Joan Collins and Linda Evans, Sly Fox starring Richard Dreyfuss, Finian’s Rainbow, Sally Marr…and Her Escorts and Three From Brooklyn. Recent off-Broadway designs include Woman Before A Glass (Obie Award), Adult Entertainment, American Rhapsody and Berlin to Broadway with Kurt Weill.
JOSHUA C. HIGHT (Sound Designer) A Graduate With Distinction of London’s Alchemea College of Audio Engineering, Joshua comes to us with many years of experience in professional audio systems repair and design, and has established himself as an exceptional live sound engineer in both London and Salt Lake City. Joshua is looking forward to a successful second season working in theater design with Pioneer Theatre Company. His other projects of note include working with Sommerset House for the 2012 Olympic Games, and PTC’s Elf—The Musical, A Few Good Men, Much Ado About Nothing, Deathtrap, Sweet Charity, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Rocky Horror Show and One Man, Two Guvnors.
AMANDA FRENCH (Hair and Makeup Designer) has been a Makeup and Hair Designer for over 25 years. She has worked for Montana Shakespeare in the Parks, the Utah Shakespeare Festival, the Utah Opera, Egyptian Theatre Company and the University of Texas at Austin. She is a contributing writer in the tenth edition of Stage Makeup by Corson, Glavan and Norcross, and her work can be seen in The Costume Technician’s Handbook by Ingham and Covey, andWig Making and Styling: A Complete Guide for Theatre and Film by Ruskai and Lowery. She attended the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati where she studied with Hair and Makeup Designer Lenna Kaleva. She is a member of the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT) and a current University of Utah adjunct professor of wigs and makeup.