Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Thespiana 2019

Thespiana is back for 2019 and in a new venue, The MAT (Millibo Art Theatre), with three performances of all-new and original rehearsed readings.

Friday, September 13, 2019, 7PM
Saturday, September 14, 2019, 7PM
Sunday, September 15, 2019, 2:30PM

The plays:

Go Fish - written by Phil Ginsburg, directed by Elizabeth Kahn
A card game unlike any you've seen.

One Last Job - written and directed by Jeff Schmoyer

Professor Pincklewhomper's School for Realistic Expectations, adapted excerpt - written by Mark and Lauren Arnest, directed by Mark Arnest
At the School for Realistic Expectations, founded by Professor Pincklewhomper 30 years ago, the teachers ensure happy lives for their students by teaching them not to bother striving, until a new student shows up who is interested in theater, which creates havoc for everyone as the administration encounters strange new feelings and admissions of insanity—or is it?

Speak of the Devil - written by Chuck Cabell, directed by Robert Tiffany
A young lawyer yearns to be a great pianist.

Thren - written and directed by Warren Epstein
Based on an excerpt from Warren Epstein's upcoming sci-fi novel "Carn," Thren tells the story of an unlikely friendship between a boy and a giant in a carnival in the distant future.

Veteran's Affair - written and directed by Sue Bachman
It’s Memorial Day at the VFW, when a wife and a Gulf War vet prod four ordinary Vietnam-era veterans into sharing their wartime experiences for the first time.

What Matters - written and directed by Debby Brewer
Johnny visits his mother.


Lauren Arnest (writer, Professor Pincklewhomper's School for Realistic Expectations) has been writing librettos and lyrics with composer husband Mark since 1997. Works include All About Love (1997, with Murray Ross), Pike’s Dream (2006), and Iron & Gold (first act, 2011).  The Notorious Nugget (2015) is a musical melodrama featuring a gold chunk shaped like a horse’s patootie. Lauren studied law before boredom drove her to the theater.

Mark Arnest (writer/director, Professor Pincklewhomper's School for Realistic Expectations) is a composer, music director, pianist and teacher in Colorado Springs. His instrumental compositions have been performed by the Colorado Springs Philharmonic, the Chamber Orchestra of the Springs, and the Veronika String Quartet. Ludlow: Four Scenes for Orchestra was a finalist in the 2016 American Prize in orchestral composition, where it received a judge’s citation. Other prize-winning compositions include the one-act opera Pike’s Dream and Towards the Garden for chamber orchestra. The Chamber Orchestra of the Springs premiered his Shout, for 23 string instruments, in March 2019.

Mark is music director at All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church; teaches music theory, composition, and piano at the Colorado Springs Conservatory; and has been known to churn out diminished seventh chords for the Iron Springs Chateau’s melodrama. In 2018 he was music director for Theatreworks’ acclaimed production of Oklahoma!

Sue Bachman (writer/director, Veteran's Affair) is participating in Thespiana for the 2nd time–the first time as a reader and this time as both writer and director.  Sue has been a character actress in Colorado Springs for many years performing with nearly all the area theatre companies. She received Pikes Peak Arts Council’s Best Actress award her portrayal of Linda Loman in Theatreworks’ Death of a Salesman.  As a playwright, she has had works read aloud at the CS Fine Arts Center in the Roughwriters playwriting festival, at Springs Ensemble Theatre in their New Works festival, and in the Coalcreek Theatre Company’s Front Range Playwrights Showcase in Louisville, Colo. Craft Production Resources has produced one of her original works for each of the past seven seasons. She thanks her husband of 37 years, Sy, for indulging her passion for theatre.

Deborah L. (Debby) Brewer (writer/director, What Matters; Speak of the Devil) has been an amateur artist and thespian since her youth—her love of writing has come more recently. She is delighted by the opportunity to contribute a play to this year’s Thespiana. Much thanks to the playwright mentors, cast, and crew who helped to bring her play to life. Find Debby’s historically inspired, bold-lined coloring books for older adults on

Charles P. (Chuck) Cabell Jr. (producer, Thespiana; writer, Speak of the Devil) founded Thespana in 2016. He is a 1958 graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point and has master’s degrees in both Astronautics, from the Air Force Institute of Technology, and Systems Management, from the University of Southern California. He also has a Doctoral Degree in Public Administration from The University of Southern California.

He retired from the Air Force as a Brigadier General after a thirty-year career (which included a flying tour in Vietnam), then spent eight years as a consultant to industry and the government in the areas of System Engineering, Risk Management, and Project Management.

He and his wife, Hallie, moved to Colorado Springs in 1990. Retired now, he devotes much of his life to writing and music.

Warren Epstein (writer/director, Thren) is becoming a regular at Thespiana as a writer and director. He’s been directing and acting in Colorado Springs for over 15 years. He’s worked with the Millibo Art Theater, Craft Theater, Springs Ensemble Players, Red Herring and Star Bar Players, among others.

Phil Ginsburg (writer, Go Fish) is a playwright/spoken word performer. His play Flush was given a stage reading at the 2017 Thespiana gathering and in May 2018 Flush was performed on stage at the Manhattan Repertory Theatre in NYC.

Jessi Hampton (stage manager) graduated with a Bachelor’s degree this year from UCCS and she is thrilled to be working as the stage manager for Thespiana 2018. She studied theatre, dance, and musical theatre at UCCS, and enjoys working all sides of the curtain as a technician and dancer. This year she was stage manager for Millibo Art Theatre's Cabaret Voltaire 2.0. She has managed UCCSTC’s dance shows To Love and Be Loved and Un D├ęsire Plus Sauvage, as well as the main stage show, Peer Gynt, this year.  Jessi designed lighting for 1001 and the 2018 ACDA show On the Brink. Her dancing performances include Earthwork. Many thanks to her wonderful family, friends, and partner Andrew! Enjoy the show!

Elizabeth Kahn (director/Mac, Go Fish) is thrilled to be involved in another year of Thespiana!  Past theater performances include Star Bar, the MAT, and the Black Box. Elizabeth teaches high school English, enjoys reading, hiking, and practicing and teaching Yoga.  She would like to thank her family for their continuing support.

Greg Lanning (Go Fish) has performed in the Colorado Springs theater scene for over 25 yrs, including Theatreworks, Star Bar, The FAC and many other small ventures.  He is pleased to be a part of Thespiana 2017. When not working in show business, he works in the mental health field. He thanks you all for supporting local theater!

Mike Miller (Sid, One Last Job) has worked both behind the scenes and on stage in the Colorado Springs area since 2009.  He is an L.A. transplant where he majored in screwing around and minored in actually working in the film industry. He has no aspirations at this point in his life other than to outlive IMPOTUS. Thanks to Jeff, Chuck, et al for the opportunity to work with Thespiana again and a special thanks to Keri for her love and caring as I head into my dotage.

Jeff Schmoyer (writer/director, One Last Job) tech entrepreneur and still not famous writer, presents his fourth Thespiana work. He sends huge thanks to all the Thespiana actors and crew for their continued support. Find him at Jmars Ink.

Robert Tiffany - (director, Speak of the Devil; Ben, One Last Job; Frank, Veterans' Affair) is very happy to be back with Thespiana. You may recall his prior Thespiana performances as director/Roger in Temptations of a Playwright (2018), Walter, the bar-fly lecher in Come Here Often? (2017), and Jim in A Priest, a Rabbi, and a Horse (2016). Other COS roles include El Gallo in The Fantastics and Noah in Two By Two. Oh, and much, much love to his son, Mike, who makes all of this worthwhile.

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