King Lear

Directed by Travis Preston

The CalArts Center for New Performance produced King Lear as a site-specific production of epic scale and daring imagination. As envisioned by director Travis Preston, this new version of Shakespeare’s tragedy, with a text adapted by Royston Coppenger, premiered in 2002 and was staged in six locations within the massive factory spaces of the Brewery Arts Complex in downtown Los Angeles.

As the inaugural production of the then-Center for New Theater (now the Center for New Performance), Lear challenged traditional interpretations of the play by employing a staging area of environmental proportions, unconventional uses of technology, an all-female cast, and a gripping post-modern aesthetic. Audiences journeyed through a series of visual installations including 40-foot video projections and a suspended car wreck.

The production garnered five L.A. Ovation Award nominations, three NAACP Theater Awards including Best Performance by a Female for Fran Bennett as King Lear, Best Production and Best Lighting Design, and traveled by invitation to France for the 2003 Frictions Festival in Dijon, the international theater festival produced by Théâtre Dijon Bourgogne.

Production Team

Travis Preston, Direction
Royston Coppenger, Adaptation
Christopher Barreca, Scenic Design
Ellen McCartney, Costume Design
Christopher Akerlind, Lighting Design
Jon Gottlieb, Sound Design
Leon Rothenberg, Sound Design
Chris Kondek, Video Design
Vinny Golia, Original Music
Rica Blunck, Choreography
JP Elins, Production Stage Manager
Bill Ballou, Technical Director
Leslie Tamaribuchi, Associate Producer
Carol Bixler, Co-Producer
Susan Solt, Producer
Fran Bennett, King Lear
Joan MacIntosh, Earl of Gloucester
Mary Lou Rosato, Earl of Kent
Marissa Chibás, Edgar
Heather Ehlers, Edmund
Elena Lowensohn, Fool
Andrea LeBlanc, Goneril
Tane Kawasaki, Regan
Sydney Slayden, Cordelia
Elaine Tse, Duke of Cornwall
Gina Belafonte, Duke of Albany
Mandy Freund, Oswald
Jessica Morris, King of France
Lori Woodall, Duke of Burgundy
Carla Nassy, Curan
Amanda Decker, Captain
Celeste Den, Gentleman
Ja’Nai Nicole Amey, Lear’s Army
Zoe Canner, Lear’s Army
Monica Marie Contreras, Lear’s Army
Eliza Coupe, Lear’s Army
Amanda Decker, Lear’s Army
Celeste Den, Lear’s Army
Jessica Goldapple, Lear’s Army
Risha Hill, Lear’s Army
Lyndsay Rose Kane, Lear’s Army
Jessica Marcus, Lear’s Army
Jessica Morris, Lear’s Army
Carla Nassy, Lear’s Army
Maria Nicolacakis, Lear’s Army
Kat Ochsner, Lear’s Army
Tatiana Piccone, Lear’s Army
Lori Woodall, Lear’s Army
Alexandra Zabriskie, Lear’s Army
Joshua Moyse, Assistant Director
Chad Bauman, Assistant Stage Manager
Erin Cass, Assistant Stage Manager
Monica Jordan, Assistant Stage Manager
Dwight Bacquie, Speech Coach
Chiao-Wen Lin, Assistant Scenic Designer
Michael Casselli, Car wreck sculpture
Karen Murk, Assistant Costume Designer/Costume Shop Manager
Tony Mulanix, Assistant Lighting Designer
Justin Townsend, Assistant Lighting Designer
Michael Casselli, Associate Technical Director
Lorrie Snyder, Associate Technical Director
Martha Ferrara, Costume Director
Tanya Lee, Head Draper
Fred Geffken, Master Electrician
Lap Chi Chu, Video Coordinator
Laura Clemons, Video Controller
Mary J. Heilman, Lead Scenic Artist/Properties Manager
Christian Johnson, Properties Artisan