Mission

Chromolume Theatre’s name comes from the Stephen Sondheim/James Lapine musical, Sunday in the Park with George, about an artist struggling to make art meaningful in 19th Century France. Chromolume Theatre was founded by two struggling artists in 2003 with its primary mission to present the American musical on an intimate level in an entertaining, intellectually stimulating and emotionally satisfying way. With growth and change, Chromolume Theatre’s mission has evolved with a new dedication to presenting Broadway’s forgotten gems and off-Broadway’s undiscovered treasured, and shining a light on productions that deserve a second look. Chromolume Theatre also provides opportunity for artists to shine who have not had such an opportunity in the past, as well as a dedication to diverse and multi-cultural casts and crews.

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Dessa Rose

Music by Stephen Flaherty
Lyrics and Book by Lynn Ahrens

february 2 – february 25, 2018
chromolume theatre

Dessa Rose premiered at Lincoln Center in 2005 and tells the story of a runaway slave and the deserted wife of a plantation owner who form a grudging alliance in their struggle to find their individual freedoms. The musical is based on the book by Sherley Anne Williams and will play during Black History Month, opening February 2, 2018 and playing through February 25, 2018.

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dessa rose

Latest Reviews

Shaunte Tabb, Dessa Rose

 

Shaunte is ecstatic about joining the cast and crew of Dessa Rose. Shaunte is Guyanese-American from Washington DC. Growing up, she was shy but loved performing in Christmas plays, talent shows, her bedroom, and just about anywhere she could bring out her inner Diana Ross. She received her MFA in Acting from the Regent University. Some of her favorite stage roles include Amanda Wingfield in the Glass Menagerie and Golde in Fiddler on the Roof (yes, she played a Jewish mother in 1905 Imperial Russia.) She has toured China and Taiwan in Aida. Shaunte has landed roles on networks such as the Lifetime and the Investigation Discovery channel and been featured in several commercials. When she’s not acting, you can find Shaunte pursuing her other passion: Karaoke! You haven’t lived until you’ve seen her “Rolling on the River” twirl. Eventually, Shaunte plans to create an inner city after-school program and also star alongside Will Smith in a feature film. She’s thinking “The Pursuit of Happiness 2”. Shaunte is grateful to be back to her first love, the theatre. She is also humbled to tell this amazing story of love, grief, hope and freedom with this incredible family of artists. “Let’s Fly!”

Abby Carlson, Ruth

 

Abby is delighted to make her Chromolume Theatre debut in this powerful and inspiring show. Highlights include The Last 5 Years (Cathy), A Man of No Importance (Adele), Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer – National Tour (Mrs. Claus/Music Supervisor), Jekyll & Hyde (Emma), Into the Woods (Baker’s Wife), Avenue Q (Kate Monster), 3DT’s The Wizard of Oz (US Glinda) and Parade (Ovation Winner), and MTW’s Evita. Abby holds a Bachelor of Music in Education and Vocal Jazz Performance and a K-12 Teaching Credential from CSULB. She teaches Musical Theatre Voice at the Orange County School of the Arts, as well as piano & voice lessons, and she often works as a Music Director in the LA/OC theatre community. She currently sings in the acapella group WestBeat (contracted at Disney), and plays/sings in So Rad – 90’s Cover Band. In her spare time Abby runs with Team World Vision and fights for social justice. She lives in Redondo Beach with her husband, composer/musician Matt, and cat/child Chloe. Huge thanks to the cast and production team for making this such an incredible experience. Much love to her family. All glory to God. Philippians 4:8

Mykell Barlow, Nathan

 

Mykell is a native of Atlanta, Georgia. Born to a musical mother, he has been singing and performing his entire life. His love of performing was more of a hobby until he was cast as the lead role in a regional production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Mykell soon recorded his first album entitled Sound Therapy and because of his music found the opportunity to work with Mike the Situation (Jersey Shore) in a scripted series called New Stage. This led to the opportunity to work and be mentored by Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins and Johnny Wright (Justin Timberlake’s manager) on a streaming series called Take the Stage. Recently, Mykell has found success as a writer as well, creating and producing a show called 202-The Series, now in its 2nd season. Mykell is excited to be a part of the phenomenal cast of Dessa Rose as Nathan. He is dedicating his performances to his late aunt, Burnedette Turner.

Matt Mancuso, Nehemiah

 

Matt is very excited to be back at Chromolume after appearing in their production of Songs For a New World (Man 2). He was last seen on the LA Stage in the first workshop for the new musical Tesla, An Elektrical Spectacle (Anital/Ensemble). Other credits include, Rum and Cookies (Max), 99 Histories (u/s Joe, Daniel), The Four of Us (David), Dublin Carol (Mark) and Much Ado About Nothing (Borachio). It is such a pleasure to be working on this remarkable show with this equally remarkable cast! Thank you to my coaches, my friends and family for all your support and belief.

Matt Mancuso, Harker

 

Ken Maurice hails from the Eastern Shore of Maryland as a singer, songwriter, actor, and screenwriter. Ken has participated in many plays, musicals and revues. Ken played the character of Oswald in William Shakespeare’s King Lear, in which he earned the high honor of “The Comedic Fool Performance Award”. This is Ken’s third time performing with Chromolume Theatre, his first was in Zanna Don’t portraying Tank, then joining them for their highly entertaining Hollywood Fringe Festival Show, Slightly Off-Broadway Now apart of the talented show, Dessa Rose. Ken has also filmed test pilot shows for HBO and A&E, and was the lead actor in Iconic Dreams Entertainment, Ghetto Dreams a short FIlm for, the Rapper/Actor, Common’s Ghetto Dreams Contest. In this Global Contest of over 40 entries worldwide, a 4th placed finished was gained. Most Recently, Ken can be seen in national Commercials for products, like that of, the board game, “Boom Blast Stix”, “Cricket Wireless”, and “Pop-Chips”. And just finished a Sold-Out Original Run, of My Big Gay Italian Funeral in North Hollywood, CA with Defiance Theatre Company. Ken Maurice is Represented by Toni Asterino, of Asterino Entertainment Agency, To find out more about Ken Maurice connect with him on Social Media Instagram and Facebook @KenMaurice

Kymberly Stewart, Dorcas, Rose

 

Kymberly Stewart is honored to be making her debut performance with Chromolume Theatre. A singer/songwriter, composer of children’s songs, actress, and lover of all things that the arts inspires, she is grateful for the opportunity to realize her dreams. Making her way from Oakland, CA to Los Angeles, CA, Kymberly has found success through a multitude of life changing events and continues to thrive as a versatile talent. Her most recent performance was at Burbank Children’s Theatre company’s productions The Prince Who Wouldn’t Talk and Once Upon A Wolf. Other stage credits include The Wizard of Oz at the Santa Monica Playhouse, and productions at the legendary Glendale Centre Theatre including HairsprayA Christmas CarolDear Ruth, and You Can’t Take It with You. In addition to acting, Kymberly is also a talented singer/songwriter. Proof of this is her original children’s CD, Giggles and Curls. Her audience continues to grow as she’s also produced and starred in two of her own music videos that show how interactive and engaging her music is for children. The music video for her song, “I Am a Robot,” has reached 2.4k views on YouTube and that number continues to climb as she continues to be discovered by parents and teachers seeking refreshing ways to connect to their children and students. Kymberly is also a member of the elite choir group, Angel City Chorale, which encompasses the spirit of community, diversity, and commitment to music in Los Angeles, CA. She continues to showcase her eclectic skill set by performing her original songs for children and their families at museums, outdoor festivals, libraries, and anywhere else her upbeat, fun, and encouraging entertainment is requested. Kymberly Stewart is set on her life’s mission to share her talents with the world and hopes to help others discover their own talents and identify with the happy, joyful, and positive values instilled in her innovative music and multi-layered artistic expressions.

Claire Buchignani, Ruth’s Mother

 

Claire is thrilled to be a part of such an inspiring show and incredible cast/crew. Chromolume Theatre debut! Some of her favorite roles include: Princess Fiona in Shrek the Musical, Annie Oakley in Annie Get Your Gun and Annabella/Pamela/Margaret in The 39 Steps. This show is dedicated to my amazing fiancé, Andy, thank you for always being my rock. For more fun check out: www.clairebuchignani.com.

Mikhail Roberts, Bertie, Sheriff Hughes

 

Mikhail is thrilled to be making his debut at the Chomolume Theatre, and hopes you enjoy the range of characters he’s playing in Dessa Rose. A graduate of the University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music B.F.A. Drama program, he always maintains that doing live theater “feels like coming home.” In Los Angeles, Roberts has appeared in over a dozen productions since his arrival in 2008–including: USS PinaforeComplete Female Stage BeautyEavesdropperCharming: The MusicalFootlooseA Midsummer Night’s DreamChicago Christmas CarolA Boy’s LifeAll in the TimingI Love You You’re Perfect Now ChangeWild About Harry, and more. A proud member of both SAG-AFTRA and Actors Equity Association, Mikhail has starred in an array of feature films and television pilots, such as OPUSSaki the KillerThe Monster’s MindsActing Normal, and The Amateur, among others; he’s also made an appearance on the hit series This Is Us, as the protagonist Jack Pearson’s younger brother Nicky. For more information on Mikhail and his body of work, feel free to visit his IMDB page at imdb.me/mikhailroberts.

Bradley Alan Turner, Kaine, Philip

 

Bradley is very excited to be a part of his second production here at Chromolume Theatre! He most recently understudied the roles of Soldier/Writer in Chromolume’s production of Hello, Again last year. A Missouri native, Bradley has been seen (and unseen) both on and off stage throughout Kansas City’s theatre scene since graduating from the University of Missouri-Kansas City with a BA in Acting. These theatres included Living Room Theatre, Coterie Theatre, Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre, Fishtank Performance Studio, Theatre for Young America, Unicorn Theatre and Spinning Tree Theatre. Bradley is newer to the Los Angeles area and is grateful to find a place within the Chromolume Theatre family.

Zach Campa, Mr. Steele, Mr. Oscar, Sheriff Pine

 

Zach is thrilled to be a part of the Los Angeles premiere of Dessa Rose! Previous credits include Liam (Bad Jews), Perchik (Fiddler on the Roof), and Moritz (Spring Awakening). Zach acted in Team Thor Pt. 3, directed by Taika Waititi and writes, produces, directs and acts in his own films including CaseyLast Night and Destination Unknown. He’d like to thank his family and friends for their endless support as well as the cast and production team for their commitment and dedication to this beautifully relevant story. Zach received a BFA in Acting from Baylor University. If you would like to see more of his work visit www.zachcampa.com and http://m.imdb.com/name/nm9082687/

Ambrey Benson, Annabel

 

A native of St. Louis, MO, Ambrey made her way to Los Angeles in pursuit of chasing her dreams. She attended the American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) with a focus on musical theater. Ambrey went on to obtain a bachelor’s in Business Management and Marketing at Westwood College LA. She’s a studio recording artist who writes lyrics as well. Ambrey has been in multiple live productions such as GreasePlanters and A Piece or My Heart. Her desire is to own a theater that caters to children and adolescents by enhancing their talents in live theater. With a passion to entertain and promise to keep God first, it will most definitely happen!

Margaret Berkowitz, Susannah

 

Margaret Berkowitz is proud to be a part of a show that focuses on the strength and unity of women that transcends race and status; especially at this moment in time. Margaret is an L.A. transplant since graduating from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She previously attended The University of Oxford where she studied Film Adaptations of Literature, Drama, and appeared in productions such as Chess and Betrayal. She is a Master Class regular at Zak Barnett Studios and studies Improv at Upright Citizens Brigade. Last summer, she originated the leading role of Diane in the musical We The People at The Miles Memorial Playhouse. Next month, she will be playing the role of Sharon Tate in the NMI Workshop of Manson’s Girls, bound for this year’s Hollywood Fringe Festival. She is so grateful for the unconditional love and support from her friends and family, especially Mama, Pod, and Jake.

Maya Thomas, Dessa Rose u/s

 

Maya “Sh’Von” Thomas is a world renowned and accomplished vocal musician, whose professional experience includes ensemble (background, choir) singer, solo artist, studio session work. Having sang her first solo at the tender age of 2 years old with her church choir. Maya’s voice and style has progressed year after year due to her love of music, commitment to high musicianship, and the tutelage of great mentors like the legendary R&B singer, Ray Parker Jr. Since moving to Los Angeles from Washington,D.C she has shared the staged with some jazz music legends. She has toured over 5 countries singing backing vocals for Barbara Morrison, The Blackbyrds, Frankie Beverly and Maze, and jazz trumpeter Johnny Britt to name a few. Recently touring in Japan with Ray Parker Jr and Raydio. Maya also has a passion for musical theatre. Playing various roles with her local church productions. Her highest profile theatre work has been starring in Fats Waller stage play Ain’t Misbehavin’ as Nell Carter. These days, Maya’s focused on making her mark in the entertainment industry. Taking all her talent and experience to the next level. This past year (2017) her voice has been featured on the documentary Walking While Black directed by Oscar winning director Errol Webber as well as a feature film Chasing Titles written and directed by Ryan Egypt. Maya stays in gratitude for all of the opportunities she has had to share her gifts and talents with the world so far, and looks forward to all of the exciting opportunities that lie ahead.

Jessica Jacobs, Ruth u/s

 

Jessica Jacobs (SAG/AFTRA) is an actress/writer/improviser/super-Jew. An alum of the UCB improv training program, she has performed all over town with her indie group, Frenemies, whose sketches have been featured on Funny or Die and College Humor. She played with the Stanford Improvisers in college and has also trained at the Groundlings school. She’s currently on the film festival circuit with her short film, Girl Code, which she stars in and co-wrote with her Director, Casey Gates. Through this project they hoped to pull back the curtain on the often insidious ways that women communicate, and also to create jobs for women in front of and behind the camera. Girl Code was shot with a female Director of Photography, all female cast, and over 50% female crew. When she’s not performing, Jessica is educating the Jewish youth of the Pacific Palisades, practicing Yoga, and eating stuff with her wonderful husband, Jose. She is absolutely thrilled to be a part of this production, and so grateful to James and the rest of the Chromolume team for welcoming her into the family. Instagram: @jessicajacobsfilm. Website: www.jessicajacobsfilm.com.

Christopher Wood, Nathan u/s

 

Christopher T. Wood has been an actor in Los Angeles for the last fourteen (14) years. His latest role was in the short film Her First Black Guy. He has appeared in over 30 film and television roles and is currently producing his first feature, Catharsis.

Allen Barstow, Nehemiah u/s

 

Allen thanks you for attending this performance of Dessa Rose, Allen’s first experience with Chromolume Theatre. Most recently, Allen performed with Little Fish Theater in their Christmas show, preceded by Best of Pick of the Vine (Donald/Daddy Longlegs/Billy/Art) and Private Eyes (Adrian). Other performances include A Winters Tale (Polixenes), Shakespeare in Hollywood (Joe E. Brown), Waiting (McMartin), The Debate (God who Loves), and Man of La Mancha (Dr. Curasco). He also enjoys studying with the Groundlings, Anteaus, Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum, and Theatre 68. In his spare time, Allen invites you to join him for some fencing, beach volleyball, or spikeball. Lastly, Allen hopes you enjoy this production as much as he enjoys being in it.

James Esposito, Director, Scenic Design

 

James is thrilled to be back in the director’s chair for the Los Angeles Premiere of this very powerful and moving musical, Dessa Rose. He most recently directed Chromolume’s critically acclaimed production of Pacific Overtures this past December, as well as Chromolume’s 2016 production of Songs For A New World. He is a founding member of Chromolume Theatre and is currently the V.P. of Operations. Sound design credits include Zanna, Don’t!Next Thing You KnowBirdPrezDo Lord Remember MeSecrets Every Smart Traveler Should KnowMerrily We Roll AlongCapsized FloatsamGreek TragedyMusical of Musicals, the MusicalAltar Boyz, and Strip, the latter of which he also directed. Scenic Design credits include the NAACP Award Winning production of Do Lord Remember Me and Love Songs – A Musical, both for Chromolume Theatre. On stage, his credits include Company (Bobby), City of Angels (Munoz), Two Gentlemen of Verona (Thurio), Forever Plaid (Sparky), Fiddler on the Roof (Twice!), Cinderella and Chess just to name a few.

Daniel Yokomizo, Musical Director

 

Daniel is incredibly excited to be working with Chromolume Theatre for his sixth professional show! He has worked as a music director for Chromolume on EdgesSongs For A New WorldZanna, Don’t and Pacific Overtures and with Art in Relation on It’s Only Life. He currently works as an accompanist, and is trying to get his original music published.

Michael Marchak, Choreographer

 

From Philadephia by way of Rhode Island, Michael studied theatre and chemistry at USC. He was last seen on Chromolume’s stage playing Mark in Altar Boyz. Having started his dance training at sixteen years old, Michael found a true passion for storytelling through the use of movement. Ballet quickly became a favorite as he trained in jazz, tap and dabbled in hip-hop. Michael works extensively on stage with Crown City Theatre in North Hollywood having recently appeared in Nosferatu during the 2017 Hollywood Fringe. Past productions: Crown City’s The Fantasticks (Matt), A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (Miles Gloriosus), Cabaret (Ernst, Emcee); San Diego Musical Theatre’s White Christmas (dance ensemble, quintet) and A Chorus Line (Mike), Sweeney Todd (Moonlight), Legally Blonde (Moonlight), A Chorus Line (Mark, Morgan Wixon Theatre), Sound of Music (3D Theatricals), The Real Love (Pasadena Civic Auditorium), Once Upon a Mattress (Cabrillo). On-Camera: Competent Charlatan Productions’ Bizaria short as well as the part of Ronnie in the feature movie musical Waiting in the Wings: Still Waiting. When Michael isn’t in the theatre, he spends his time recording and performing with his boy band, Echo V (@echovmusic) — Checkout our single “Let You Go” on iTunes! This is Michael’s third time choreographing for Chromolume — having choreographed Zanna Don’t and Pacific Overtures — and he couldn’t be more thrilled and grateful for this opportunity to dive into a beautiful and rare piece of theatre. Enjoy! @michaeljmarchak “You’ve got talent. Don’t give up.”

Kara McLeod, Costume Design

 

Kara McLeod has been working in theater for a million years, or about 30, depending on how you count it. Currently, when not working on shows, she teaches at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, Concordia University and Santa Ana College. Dessa Rose is the third show she has done with Chromolume Theatre, having done costumes for Musical of Musicals, the Musical and last year’s production of Pacific Overtures and she’s excited to be back with such a great team!

Jesse Baldridge, Lighting Design

 

After working on board the Celebrity cruise ship ‘Eclipse’ for almost a year, Jesse is eager to be designing back on land again. Since graduating from CalArts in 2015 under the tutelage of professional lighting designer Anne Militello, he has worked with the Luminario Ballet, S.O.S. Entertainment, 4Wall Entertainment, Echo Theatre and also assisted with productions at the Los Angeles Opera, Yeager Designs, & Diavolo Dance Studios. He has designed for various theatre productions, music performances, art installations, and hopes to someday work on more immersive projects such as themed architecture, landscape, tradeshows, conventions, and theme parks.

Jasmine Moreno, Stage Manager


Jasmine Moreno: Jasmine is a Los Angeles Valley College student who is majoring in Theater Arts to pursue a career in Stage Management. Although she has worked on school plays as stage manager, this is the first musical she has ever worked on outside of school and she is grateful for Chromolume Theatre for giving her this opportunity. It is a pleasure to work with so many talented people and she feels lucky for joining them in this production.

Ken Werther, Publicity


KEN WERTHER PUBLICITY has been a staple in the Los Angeles performing arts community since 1982. Public relations, producing, directing. As producer: All Your Hard WorkThe Good Boy; the Queer Classics productions of The Importance of Being Earnest and The Taming of the Shrew. Assistant director: Stop the World, I Want to Get Off (Musical Theatre Guild); The Women of Brewster Place (Celebration Theatre); The Woodsman (Coeurage Theatre Company). For a complete listing of PR activities, visit www.kenwerther.com.