2018-2019 Season

“White Guy on the Bus”

By Bruce Graham

Premiered September 2018


Presented by iTheatre Collaborative

Sept. 7, 8, 13, 14, 15, 20, 21, 22 at 8:00 pm and Sept. 9 at 2:00pm

A shocking and excoriating new play that unravels a complex web of moral ambiguity, class conflict, and the racial divide in America. A wealthy white businessman and a struggling black single mom ride the same bus week after week. The question is why he rides the bus and what does he want from her? The answers, like race, are not so easy.




Cast

Christian Boden

Christian Boden (Christopher) is honored to be working with iTheatre Collaborative on this production. Earlier this year, he played Petyr in The Lord's Mercy, Chad in These, Our Mindless Hearts, and Benjamin in The Graduate. For his day job, Mr. Boden works as a mathematician. He would like to thank his loved ones for their continued support, and hopes you will enjoy the show!

Matthew Cary

Matthew Cary (Ray) is excited to be performing with iTheatre Collaborative for the first time in this terrific play. He has been involved in Arizona theater for over 30 years now. Some of his favorite roles include Reverend Hale in The Crucible, George in Of Mice and Men, Jack in The Importance of Being Earnest, Gabe in Dinner With Friends (Zoni Award Nomination for Best Actor, 2007), Mitch in A Streetcar Named DesireThe Odd Couple, Elwood P. Dowd in Harvey (MET's “Best Actor” award, 2006), James in Children of a Lesser God. Also a director, Mr. Cary has staged many productions, including I Hate Hamlet, Snoopy, the Musical, What the Butler Saw, Play It Again Sam, Something's Afoot, and It Runs in the Family (MET's “Best Director” award, 2005). He holds a B.A. Degree in English from Arizona State University and a Master's degree in Education from Norther Arizona University. Mr. Cary is presently teaching Sign Language at Dobson High School in Mesa.

Kim LaVelle

Kim LaVelle (Roz) is thrilled to be working with iTheatre Collaborative at the Herberger Theatre on this production. She was most recently seen in The Graduate as Mrs. Robinson where she received Best Actress in a Leading Role in a Play at Mesa Encore Theatre's 81st Season Awards. Ms. LaVelle has also been seen in TV, film, and commercials throughout her acting career. She is currently represented in Arizona by Dani’s Agency. In addition to pur-suing her love of acting, Ms. LaVelle is a Realtor on the Sandra Baldwin Team at Launch Real Estate, mother to her beautiful daughter, Abigail, and is able to peruse her love of theatre thanks to her supportive family.

Hayla Stewart

Hayla Stewart (Molly) received her BA in theatre from ASU. Recently, she has been in Stray Cat Theatre's KISS, All Puppet Player's Frankenstein Has No Legs, A Christmas Carol at TheaterWorks, The Living Fountain at the AZ Renaissance Fair and Summertime Seven at Space 55. She can also be seen on Fox this fall in a Charles Manson docudrama called Inside the Manson Cult - The Lost Tapes as Mary Brunner. "Thank you to my family for always, always being supportive."

Victoria Stokes

Victoria Stokes (Shatique) is delighted to be making her debut in Phoenix, AZ with iTheatre Collaborative. She is not new to theater, only new to Arizona. Her passion for acting began when she was six years old and starred in The Wild Wild West as Mae West. In 1991 she moved to New York to begin her professional career on Broadway and performed with the Negro Ensemble Company. She graduated from Howard University obtaining a BFA in Film/TV & Theater. She went on to perform in film, landing a minor role as Sharon in A Rage in Harlem starring Robin Givens and Forest Whitaker. During her educational peak in Washington, DC, she wrote, pro-duced and starred in a one woman show entitled Feeling for Life, and as Jackie “Moms” Mabley which was invited to perform at the National Black Theater Festival. The show was highly acclaimed and reviewed at the Festival. Ms Stokes then returned to Dallas and became Director of John Robert Powers Modeling & Acting Agency/ Conservatory. She also toured with the Dallas Shakespeare Festival portraying Lady MacBeth in MacBeth, and Emelia in Othello. She is thrilled to be returning to the theater to do what she loves, exclaiming, “The stage is the only place that I feel “NORMAL!” She currently teaches Acting for TV/Film at John Casablanca in Scottsdale and recently finished her first children’s book to be published in 2019.

Playwright

Bruce Graham plays include Burkie, Early One Evening at the Rainbow Bar & Grille, Moon over the Brewery, Minor Demons, Belmont Avenue Social Club, The Champagne Charlie Stakes, Desperate Affection, Coyote on a Fence (Winner of The Rosenthal Prize, Two Drama Desk Nominations – the West End production starred Ben Cross) According to Goldman, Dex and Julie Sittin' in a Tree and The Outgoing Tide (which starred John Mahoney and Rondi Reed). Graham recently returned to acting, playing Lenny in his play Any Given Monday, which won the 2010 Barrymore Award for Best New Play. His one man show, The Philly Fan, plays semi-continuously throughout the Philadelphia area. Something Intangible won seven 2009 Barrymore Awards including Best New Play. His film credits include "Dunston Checks In," "Anastasia" and "Steal This Movie." T.V. Movies: "Hunt for the Unicorn Killer," "The Christmas Secret," "Ring of Endless Light" (Humanitas Award Winner – Best Children’s Screenplay), "Right on Track," "Tiger Cruise," "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year," "Trading Christmas." Television: "Roseanne," "Leg Work" and various soap operas. Graham has received grants from the Pew Foundation, the Princess Grace Foundation (Statuette Award Winner) the Rockefeller Foundation and the Philadelphia Theatre Initiative. He is a two time winner of the Edgerton Foundation Award for Best New Play. Along with Michele Volansky he is the author of the book, The Collaborative Playwright. Graham is a graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania. He teaches film and theatre courses at Drexel University and lives in South Philly with his wife Stephanie, daughter Kendall and beagle Truman.

Creative Team

Elizabeth Broeder (Sound/Media Design, Dramaturghe) is a senior in the Barrett Honors College at Arizona State University studying Interdisciplinary Arts and Performance and Theatre Arts. Her previous work with iTheatre Collaborative includes Veronica's Room and Hostages. She is so honored to have worked on such a beautiful script with this talented cast. She sends all of her love and gratitude to Charles St.Clair, Kailey Mattheisen, Christopher Haines, Rosie Close, mom, dad and Sarah for their lessons and friendship. Enjoy the show!

Rosemary Close (Production Stage Manager, Producer) has been involved in theater in the Valley for over thirty years. Her work dates back as far as the Arizona Contemporary Theater Company, Northwest Studios and the Glendale Little Theater to name a few oldies. Her onstage credits include; Frozen, Harvey, Chapter Two, Barefoot in the Park, Cabaret, The Balcony, The Way We Live Now, Royal Gambit, Love Scenes from Romeo and Juliet, Reel to Real, The Collected Works of Billy the Kid, The Maids, Skimpies and Bad Seed. Her recent directing credits include; Grounded and An Almost Holy Picture. In 1991, Rosemary began her longtime association with the New York theater company, Mabou Mines. She appeared in numerous productions with that company both in Phoenix and New York. The highlight of that work with Mabou Mines was a leading role in the multimedia stage production, Wrath of Kali, directed by the award winning and acclaimed, Lee Breuer. Currently, she is the Managing Director for iTheatre Collaborative and is proud to be a part of the impact iTheatre has made in the Phoenix downtown community.

Christopher Haines (Director, Producer) is a theater veteran with over thirty years of experience as an actor, producer, stage manager, writer, director and designer. He graduated in 1991 from Duke University. As a designer his work includes: Topdog/Underdog, A Raisin in the Sun, Gunplay, Peter Pan and Wendy, Wizard of Oz, The Colored Museum, The House of Bernarda Alba, and Horn in the West, a 1500 seat outdoor amphitheater in Boone, N.C. In 1994, Mr. Haines collaborated with the internationally acclaimed director, Lee Breuer (founder of Mabou Mines), on his project Wrath of Kali, as the Director of Videography, both in its debut in Phoenix, AZ and in New York. Other design work in video, photography and media includes the Daniel Lentz Group’s A Crack in the Bell, such plays as Jack, Reel to Real, Romeo and Juliet, Sweet Thunder, Don’t Bother Me, I Can’t Cope, and he has worked as the Director of Photography on the feature lms Wake of the Hero and Means of Escape and was the production designer for the independent lm Hack. In 2002 he co-founded iTheatre Collaborative. His work at iTheatre has garnered national attention and recognition with invited performances at the National Black Theater Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., the Black Arts Movement Festival in Austin, TX and the Last Frontier Theatre Conference in Valdez, AK. For iTheatre he has produced well-over fty productions in the Valley with numerous regional and world premieres. Mr. Haines will be graduating in the Fall from A.S.U. with a Master’s degree in Nonprofit Leadership and Management.