Cast and Crew Bios

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Emilio Aquino, Proteus; Decius Brutus/Octavius Caesar

Emilio Aquino was born in Bronx, New York. Studied Drama at the St. Petersburg Theatre Arts Academy in Russia under Lev Dodin, The international Corporeal Mime School in London, Columbia College Chicago and earned his B.A. in acting at Drama Centre London. Upon graduation he has worked intensively in theatre playing a wide range of characters, most recently Claudio (Much Ado about Nothing) in Prospect Park. He is excited to work with Curious Frog Theatre Company. You can see him in the Hit Web Series "Drama Queenz" and also in "Doctor Who," playing a small supporting role, on BBC 3..

D. Ajane Carlton, Flavius/Artemidorus/Soldier 2/Citizen 4

D. Ajane Carlton was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. She has been acting (up) all her life. Her love of theater and acting in general led her to City College of New York, where she studied all aspects of theater and television, both artistic and technical. During her years at City she discovered a great love for fencing, becoming captain of the Varsity women's fencing team, and stage combat. She is very grateful to Curious Frog Company and Rob for this great opportunity.

Holly Dortch, Cinna/Titinius

Holly Dortch (Cinna/Titinius) is a Brooklynite, by way of Washington, D.C. She is very excited to be a part of Curious Frog's summer team. She's been involved with a staged reading for Roots of the Seed. She's been Cat from Breath Boom, and Nuna from Necessary Targets. Holly studied acting at the American Musical & Dramatic Academy in Manhattan. She would like to thank her friends and loved ones for their continued support. She would also like to thank Curious Frog for welcoming her. Enjoy the Show!

Al Patrick Jo, Metellus Cimber/Lucillius/Citizen 3

Al Patrick Jo received his B.A. in Theatre from the City College of New York and most recently performed in the American debut of Winter Wedding (originally titled Winter Funeral, written by Hanoch Levin) at Theater for the New City. He looks forward to being a part of what will be a wonderful run of Curious Frog Theatre Company's Julius Caesar.

Bushra Laskar, Silvia

Bushra Laskar is a playwright and actress. Favorite roles include Auoda in Around the World in Eighty Days (Penguin Rep), Solange in The Maids (Curious Frog) and Ava in A Play on War (NAATCO/ Theater Mitu). As a playwright, she has recently completed the 2010/2011 New York Theater Workshop Emerging Artist of Color Fellowship. Many thanks to Reneé and Curious Frog for rekindling her passion for Shakespeare, '80s style!

Justin Maruri*, Valentine

Justin Maruri* (Valentine) attended Ithaca College as a B.F.A. Acting major and upon graduating moved to New York City. He has toured nationally with TheatreWorks USA and performed as a rep member of the Pennsylvania Renaissance Festival. His New York theatrical credits include Romeo and Juliet, The Tempest, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Fuente Ovejuna, Paper Dragon and more. He has trained with Alec Baldwin and Michael Disher in their premiere acting workshop. He is a proud core member of the Ny-Lon Fusion Collective.

Shae Orrick, Trebonius/Volumnius

Shae Orrick (Trebonius/Volumnius) is a graduate of Oklahoma City University, with a B.F.A. in Acting. Recent roles have included Masha in Three Sisters, and Adriana in A Comedy of Errors. She is so excited to be part of Curious Frog's Julius Ceasar, and wants to thank her family and friends for all their love and support.

Manuel de la Portilla, Marullus/Lucius/Caesar's servant/Publius/Citizen 1/Cato

Manuel de la Portilla (Music Director – Julius Caesar). Most recent credits include "The Stare" (Cafeteria Films) and Flute in A Midsummer Night's Dream: The Scavengers (Curious Frog). Manuel also performs in the Funderground Comedy Show in Williamsburg, which features local artists as well as original material. He would like to thank Reneé Rodriguez and Robert Dyckman for an opportunity with one of his favorite works.

Angela Sharp, Julia; Calpurnia/Popilius/Messala/2nd Commoner

Angela Sharp is a proud Frog and most recently appeared as Meredith in CFTC's production of Rope of Sands with Planet Connections Festivity, Storyline, and A Midsummer Night's Dream: The Scavengers (Hermia). Other credits include Snow Angel, Power Burn 3, The Session (DFA). She is a graduate of AMDA in New York City and is thrilled to be involved in her second season of summer Shakespeare and chaos with Curious Frog. Aside from the Bard, Sharp also enjoys getting down with Funderground at 17 Frost Art Space in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

Krystine Summers, Launce/First Outlaw; Casca/Lepidus/Strato/1st Commoner-Musician

Krystine Summers is a member of Curious Frog Theatre Company. She has performed with CFTC in Storyline, Yawn, and A Midsummer Night's Dream and most recently assistant directed Rope of Sands (Planet Connections Theatre Festivity—nominated for three awards.) Previous acting credits include [The] Ophelia Landscape, Tartuffe, Blood Wedding, and The Taming of the Shrew. Past directing credits include 4.48 Psychosis and Boy Gets Girl. Education: B.F.A. in Theatre Performance/Directing from Columbus State University.

Kevin Russo, Caius Ligarius/Octavius' Servant/Soldier 1

Kevin Russo is a BFA-wielding graduate of Adelphi University since 2009. A Long Island resident for most of his life, he is now living in Queens. Recent credits include Salvatore in the Off-Broadway production of Midnight in Havana at the Jerry Orbach Theater; Tony in All They Need Is Love as part of the Strawberry One-Act Play Festival; and Prometheus in Fire Thief, a revolutionary adaptation on the myth by Laura Hirschberg. In addition to acting, Kevin is a proficient reed player and an SAFD-certified Actor-Combatant. Kevin is especially excited for the opportunity to play with swords and shields in this traveling production of Julius Caesar.

Umi Shakti, Lucetta/First Outlaw

Umi Shakti is thrilled to be working with Curious Frog once again. A native New Yorker, Umi Shakti has traveled the world performing choral music in Germany, folk music in England, Christmas madrigals St. Patrick's Cathedral, and popular classics at Carnegie Hall and Madison Square Garden. She has sung with Michael Jackson, Jodi Collins, Tamia, Deborah Cox, and Mya, as well as the Brooklyn Philharmonic and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. Off-Broadway: Tearing Down The Walls (Renee). Other New York Credits: The African Company Presents Richard III (Ann Johnson), Much Ado About Nothing (Hero), Neither Heaven Nor Earth (Emily), and Dance Dance Revolution (dir. Alex Timbers). Much love and many thanks to my friends and family. Your support means everything to me. Training: Yale, LAMDA.

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Nicholas Urda*, Brutus

Nicholas Urda* is excited to be joining the cast of Julius Caesar and to be performing with Curious Frog Theatre Company. Credits include: The Real Thing, The Shrew Tamer, Betrayal and My Fair Lady (Northern Stage), La Llorona (Amphibian Stage Productions), Private Lives (Two River Theatre), Othello, starring Patrick Page and Avery Brooks, Comedy of Errors, Don Juan, The Persians, Love's Labour's Lost (Shakespeare Theatre Co, DC), Loves Labour's Lost (Royal Shakespeare Co). Film Credits include Tactics with The Movie Mind Productions, Measuring Up with Life Art and countless other shorts. Look out for his upcoming web series "Team Allies" and "Date Night." In addition to being an actor, Nicholas is an acting coach for the Center for Creative Media in Garden Valley, TX and THE events in Orlando Florida. He has also taught in various studios in NY. He would like to thank God and his wife, Alana, for all her love and support. Nicholas is a proud member of AEA since 2006..

James Ware, Duke/Antonio; Julius Caesar

After a 2-year hiatus from the stage this southern transplant is happy to join the cast and crew of Curious Frog's summer time schedule. Last seen on stage in the summer of 2009, this award-winning actor took two years off to work on his most ambitious project to date, the birth of his only child. Now that the little one is walking and talking...and talking...and talking and "my God yes, she's still talking," the time has come to return to his oldest love, the stage. Thanks to all of you for taking the time to join us in the park and share in the works of Mr. Shakespeare. My sincerest thanks to Reneé for this opportunity and my most important thanks go to God, my mother, my father, my Aunt "T" and of course my Boo-Boo Bear. Thank you all and please enjoy our show.

Kimberley Wong, Portia/Soothsayer/Pindarus/Citizen 2

Kimberley Wong is thrilled to be joining Curious Frog! Favorite credits: Merchant of Venice (Portia - NYU), Julius Caesar (Brutus - Coyote Laboratory), and Hamlet (Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival). Kimberley is also the co-founder of the Accidental Shakespeare Company, which is developing a production of Twelfth Night in which every actor plays every part (accidentalshakespeare.tumblr.com).

 
Reneé Rodriguez, Director Two Gentlemen of Verona; Cassius

Reneé Rodriguez is an award-winning director, actress and private coach. She has directed in several cities throughout the United States, with critical acclaim for her direction of Don't Dress for Dinner at Chanticleers Theatre in San Francisco, earning several prestigious awards including Best Director, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress, and Best Production, and Turn of the Screw in the Bay Area as well. She worked with Idaho Shakespeare Festival, directing their apprentices in addition to a production of The Winter's Tale as part of their children's programming. In Chicago, Reneé directed many new works. Then in Indiana, she directed contemporary plays, including one of her favorites, The Credeaux Canvas, and directed for Bloomington Playwrights Project (featured in February's American Theatre magazine). In New York City, Reneé has directed several productions with new playwrights, working with companies such as Redd Mask Theatre, Piper Theatre Company, Tree Trunk Productions, Chatterton Presents, and other independents. For Curious Frog, she has directed Comedy of Errors, Much Ado About Nothing, Romeo & Juliet, A Midsummer Night's Dream: The Scavengers, Climbing, and the recent triply-award-nominated Rope of Sands by Toni Seger. While in San Francisco, she helped start the Act Now! Theatre Company, and helped rebuild and market CTA Crossroads Theatre. Both theatres are thriving today with full seasons and subscription rates. In 2007, Reneé founded Curious Frog Theatre Company, which is in its fifth season. Advanced Actor/Combatant with SAFD. MFA Indiana University Bloomington. She is thrilled to have been a recent Featured Voice with My Latino Voice. Without the support of Adam, Laurie, Alize, Patrick and Robert, none of this could happen.

Robert J. Dyckman* Director, Julius Caesar; Speed/Eglamour/Second Outlaw; Mark Antony

Grandma Sylvia's Funeral (Todd) – Soho Playhouse; Hamlet (Hamlet), Twelfth Night (Orsino) – National Shakespeare Company; Cymbeline (Cloten), Shenandoah (Nathan), Chaps! (Clive Cooper) – Texas Shakespeare Festival; Tartuffe (Tartuffe), The Barber of Seville (Figaro) – National Theater of the Performing Arts; Just So Stories (Genie) – TheatreworksUSA; Hamlet (Hamlet) – The Million Stories, NYC; Jesus Christ Superstar (Peter) – Media Theater, PA; They're Playing Our Song (Ensemble) – Maltz Jupiter Theatre, FL; Macbeth (Macduff), Taming of the Shrew (Lucentio) – Westco Productions, NYC; As You Like It (Orlando) - Snorks and Piñs, NYC; (Film) When Mama Returns, The Affair, Zombie Presidents. For 5 years Robert was the Artistic Director of The Company of Players, a not-for-profit arts organization in NYC dedicated to promoting diversity, where he produced, directed and acted in Romeo & Juliet (Romeo), Pericles (Pericles), The Two Gentlemen of Verona (Proteus), A Midsummer Night's Dream (Oberon), Much Ado About Nothing (Claudio) and Love Letters, by A.R. Gurney (Andrew); Other directing credits include: The Searcher, by Frederick Stroppel for The Network's One-Act Play Festival last year and As You Like It for the Women of Color Festival in NYC a few years ago. Robert is thrilled to be performing and directing with Curious Frog Theatre Company! Graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Recognized Actor/Combatant with the Society of American Fight Directors (SAFD). *Proud member of Actors' Equity Association. Much love and many thanks to Reneé for all her hard work, patience, kindness and creativity!

 
Shira Segal (Stage Manager – Julius Caesar)

Shira Segal was born and raised in Israel. After many years of being a teacher, secretary, risk manager and many other odd jobs she finally came two years ago to New York to follow her dream of studying at the Stella Adler Studio. She is now going into her third and final year. Favorite credits include No Exit (Inez/Estelle), The Way of the World (Lady Wishfort), Twelfth Night (Viola), Danny and the Deep Blue Sea (Roberta), Othello (Iago). She has also been a stage manager in theatre productions such as Neil Simon's The Good Doctor and Pinero's Trelawney of the Wells. She would like to thank Curious Frog Theatre Company for this opportunity to work on the wonderful Julius Caesar.

 
Gae Song (Stage Manager – Two Gentlemen of Verona)

Gae Song was born and raised in Queens, NY and graduated from Brooklyn College with a BA in English Education. This is her first time stage managing for Curious Frog, although she was Wardrobe Supervisor for CFTC's Romeo & Juliet two seasons ago, and stage managed The Shape of Things with Jump for Joy Productions under Reneé's direction. Gae wants to thank Curious Frog, the cast and crew of 2G and Reneé for the wonderful opportunity. Holla to my homie!.

Rocio Alexis Mendez (Fight Director)

Rocio Alexis Mendez is an actor/fight director, born and raised in Hell's Kitchen, New York City. Rocio has studied stage combat with AMDA, En Garde, Vampire Cowboys and Swordplay, NYC. Current obsession has been Kung Fu and Capoeira, continuously taking classes throughout the New York City area. Rocio is the Resident Fight Director for Curious Frog Theater Company and has also done productions with Cat Fight Productions,, Harlem School of the Arts, Classical Theater of Harlem, _gaia Studios, J City Theater, Phare Play Productions, and many more.

Actors' Equity Association

Actors' Equity Association (AEA), founded in 1913, represents more than 45,000 actors and stage managers in the United States. Equity seeks to advance, promote and foster the art of live theatre as an essential component of our society. Equity negotiates wages and working conditions, providing a wide range of benefits, including health and pension plans. AEA is a member of the AFL-CIO, and is affiliated with FIA, an international organization of performing arts unions. The Equity emblem is our mark of excellence. www.actorsequity.org