About the Cast & Crew of Prelude to a Kiss

MEET THE CAST (in alphabetical order)
Brendan Chaney (Uncle Fred/Ensemble) is from Aberdeen, NC, and was a competitive speaker and debater at the national level in high school. In college, he had to find an outlet, and theatre seemed the natural place. By the end of his freshman year, he was on an acting scholarship. He tackled a diverse series of roles, from Uncle Peck in How I Learned to Drive to Robert in Proof. After college he took some time off until 2016, when he appeared in MCP’s Unnecessary Farce and more recently in Taking Sides (PCP) and The Fox on the Fairway and Wait Until Dark at LTA.

Deja Elliott (Aunt Dorothy/Ensemble) is thrilled to be working at LTA for the first time. Her previous acting credits include Stuart Little, The Cherry Orchard and You Can’t Take It with You. Deja would like to thank her family for their love and support, her castmates for being special and the director for this opportunity.

Smithchai Chutchainon (Peter) is excited to make his stage debut with LTA. He has appeared as Liam/Lawrence in Calendar Girls (PPF), Bob Cratchit in A Christmas Carol (Britches & Hose Shakespeare Theatre), Simon Mostyn in Murder on the Nile (Alpha Theater NY) and Ty in Good Kids (Theatre Prometheus). He has also worked with Flying Muskrats and The Highwood Theatre. He studied acting at George Mason University, and in his spare time he loves to break dance and perform spoken word poetry.

Brianna Goode (Rita) is excited for her first LTA production. She last appeared as Peto/Montjoy in Henry V at Brave Spirits Theatre. Some of her favorite roles include Lil’Bit in How I Learned to Drive (DS), Horatio in Hamlet (PCP), Casey Mulgraw in Anton in Show Business (SSS), Regen in Bachelorette (DS), Karen in Unnecessary Farce (MCP) and Ray in Fiveplay at The Coil Project.

Amber Kelly-Herard (Waiter/Ensemble) is making her debut with LTA, but she enjoyed theatre throughout high school. At age 18 she joined the Air Force and concurrently pursued her education. As a recent doctoral program graduate who still serves, she is looking forward to acting again. Amber, who is originally from Southern California, currently lives in Alexandria with her husband, three children and toy poodle. She is a vegan foodie who enjoys traveling and finding new adventures.

Casey Kniseley (Taylor) has loved working with all of the wonderful folks at LTA. This is her first LTA show. Most recently, Casey played Anne in The Diary of Anne Frank with Lit Live Theatre in Los Angeles. Some of her favorite roles include Leila in Yellow Moon: The Ballad of Leila and Lee (Bedlam Theatre/Edinburgh Fringe) and Marion in the film Young and Innocent.

Joey Pierce (Tom) is a recent transplant to Alexandria by way of Louisiana and is excited to make his LTA debut. Joey holds a BA in English and Theatre from Nicholls State University and is an alumnus of the American Theatre Wing’s SpringboardNYC class of 2010. Previous theatrical credits include Max in Lend Me a Tenor, Lysander in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Mortimer in Arsenic and Old Lace and Benedict in Much Ado About Nothing. Joey would like to thank his husband and children for their support in finding his way back to theatre.

Jon Radulovic (Dr. Boyle) returns to the LTA stage after more than 30+ years, when he appeared in Barefoot in the Park and A Flea in Her Ear. For nearly three decades, Jon has been working on behalf of hospice at the association level. Back in the 20th century, Jon worked as an actor in the DC area, appearing with theaters that included the Folger Shakespeare Library, The Shakespeare Theater, The National Players, Source Theatre, Interact, The Kennedy Center Programs for Families and Young Audiences, and others.

Cliff Rieger (Old Man) is excited to be working at LTA again. He appeared in LTA’s A Few Good Men back in 2019 and recently worked on the Sterling Playmakers’ production of The Laramie Project. He appeared with several theater groups in the DMV area as well as in central Florida. Cliff is very happy to be working with Maggie Mumford again. He enjoys living in Virginia surrounded by his wife of 50 years and his three grown children and four grandchildren.

Christine Tankersley (Mrs. Boyle) is delighted to return to the LTA stage. She most recently appeared as Donna in ACCT’s production of Defying Gravity and before that as Rita Sanderson in DS’s award-winning production of Last Summer at Bluefish Cove. A few of her favorite roles include Frankie in Southern Hospitality (ACCT), Mrs. Cratchit in A Christmas Carol (LTA) and Millie in Thoroughly Modern Millie (Tennessee Valley Players).

Kelly Trott (Leah/Ensemble) is excited to make her debut with LTA. Kelly has been performing one way or another since age 5, when she would belt “The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow” from Annie for doting grandparents. After high school and college theater, she was lead singer for The Blackout District and made her return to acting as Linda in Talk Radio and Christine in The Bad Seed. Most recently she performed as Elvira in CRT’s Blithe Spirit. When not acting, she spends time with her husband and kids and performs locally with an improv troupe, The Auxiliary.

MEET THE CREW (in alphabetical order)
Shelby Baker (Properties Design) is super excited to be the props designer for Prelude to a Kiss. She previously worked props for A Christmas Carol and Legally Blonde at LTA. Shelby is a theatre graduate of George Mason University.

David Correia (Sound Design) has executed sound designs for area community theater productions including Bright Star and The Revolutionists (LTA), Title of Show and The Bluest Eye (DS), Sweeney Todd (Rooftop Productions) and The Explorer’s Club (Lorton Workhouse). Previous notable LTA productions include Hairspray (2011 WATCH Award for sound design), Spamalot (2014 WATCH nomination for sound design), Proof (2014 WATCH nomination for sound design) and The Nance (2018 WATCH nomination for sound design).

Melissa Dunlap (Co-Stage Manager) Previous stage management credits at LTA: The Fabulous Lipitones, Driving Miss Daisy and A Christmas Carol. If her name looks familiar, you may have seen her at LTA earlier this year as Celia in Blue Stockings, Jean-Louise Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird and Sarah in Laughing Stock or in local productions as Rose in Enchanted April (ACCT), May in Fool for Love (PCP) and Suzanne in Picasso at the Lapin Agile (VTC).

Mary Ferrara (Assistant Stage Manager) is happy to be working on her 19th production with LTA. It is great to be back at the theatre again! She looks forward to a super run with a great cast and crew.

JK Lighting Design, Jeffrey Scott Auerbach and Kimberly Crago (Lighting Design) are an award-winning lighting design team active at LTA, ACCT, DS, TAP and other local theatres. Jeff and Kimberly are thrilled to work with this talented cast and crew. Their recent productions at LTA include Bright Star and A Christmas Carol. They wish to thank the producers and Maggie for this opportunity. Jeff thanks David and Katie for their love and support. Kimberly, also as master electrician, thanks Steve for being a real swell guy.

Ramah Johnson (Assistant Stage Manager) is delighted to be back for another LTA production. She previously stage managed Bright Star at LTA and The Drowsy Chaperone at SMP. Ramah wishes to thank her partner, David, and her daughters, Kendall and Casey, for their unwavering support.

Donna Kenley (Production Assistant) is a new LTA member and is enjoying working with creative directors, producers, cast and crew on Prelude to a Kiss. She supported auditions for Blue Stockings and assisted properties and set painting for A Christmas Carol (2021) and is looking forward to exploring all aspects of LTA. Donna served 30 years in the U.S. Army prior to becoming an LTA volunteer.

Robin Maline (Hair and Makeup Design) has had the pleasure of working at LTA on such shows as A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, Bright Star and Blue Stockings and many others in the greater DC area. She has been working as co-chair of wigs and makeup here at LTA since November 2017. She would like to thank her parents, Rob and Karen, and her brother Charlie for their unending love and support as well as Susan Boyd (previous wigs and makeup chair) for passing on her great wisdom. Enjoy the show!

Maggie Mumford (Director) is a writer/director with a BA in Theatre from the University of Mary Washington and an MFA in creative writing from the University of Memphis. Her directing credits include The Haunting of Hill House (LTA), Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol (FCT), As You Like It (FCT), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (University of Mary Washington, Amphitheatre) and Almost, Maine (UMW, Studio 115). Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Crab Fat Magazine (Best of the Net nominee), Bodega, After Happy Hour, Waxing & Waning, and The Wire’s Dream Magazine. Her short story “Flying Circus” received an honorable mention from Glimmer Train Magazine for their short story award for new writers. She teaches composition at Laurel Ridge Community College and information literacy online at the University of Arizona Global.

Peter Mumford (Set Design) This is Peter’s second show at LTA. He previously co-designed the set to The Haunting of Hill House (2019) with Ken Brown. Peter has also designed sets for FCT, including As You Like It, Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead and Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol. Peter has a BA in Theatre from the University of Mary Washington and works as a COVID-19 case investigator with the Virginia Department of Health. He is very happy to once again be working with his favorite director. Peter would also like to thank LTA for its thorough and consistent commitment to COVID safety that made this production possible.

Diedre (De) Nicholson-Lamb (Set Painting) is pleased to be working with the wonderful cast and crew of Prelude to a Kiss. De most recently painted Enchanted April (WATCH nominee) and On Golden Pond for ACCT and The Rocky Horror Show (Pearl Award—Excellence in Set Painting) for LTA and in 2012 painted LTA’s Witness for the Prosecution (Pearl Award nominee). De decided to broaden her theater horizons when she not only painted but designed the set for The Will Rogers Follies, Saturday, Sunday, Monday and The Visit at LTA. In 2009 she won the Pearl Award for Excellence in Set Painting for Picnic and a WATCH nomination.

Tom O’Reilly (Master Carpenter) is pleased to be back for another show with LTA! It is always a pleasure to work with the volunteers and craftspeople who make these shows possible. Recent LTA credits include Fences, The Nance, Driving Miss Daisy and Jesus Christ Superstar and assisting others at LTA, RCP’s Bright Star and many shows for TAP.

Cleo Potter they/them (Co-Stage Manager) is thrilled to be stage managing their first LTA show, having graduated from The College of Wooster, Ohio, in May 2020 with a concentration in stage management and lighting. They were assistant lighting designer for LTA’s Bright Star and worked lights for ACCT’s The Cemetery Club. Cleo would like to thank everyone in the cast and on the production team that helped this show come together!

Deborah Remmers (Set Decoration) is an artist with diverse interests, and set dressing is one medium in which she works. She is pleased to be a member of the crew for Prelude to a Kiss. Deborah enjoyed set decoration for LTA’s To Kill a Mockingbird and received a WATCH nomination for set decoration on the Ruby Griffith Award-winning The Savannah Disputation at LTA. Gratitude goes to her supportive spouse and nephew and to all Ukrainian mothers.

Carol Strachan (Co-Producer) has previously produced at LTA Witness for the Prosecution, Scapino! and A Christmas Carol (2014 and 2019) and will be producing Lettice and Lovage (February 2023). She designed props for A Party to Murder and a different A Christmas Carol (2021). As an actor, Carol has appeared here onstage in Lady Windermere’s Fan, Pack of Lies, It Runs in the Family, Blithe Spirit and a previous Lettice and Lovage. Her most recent role was in The Audience with The British Players in March/April.

Ruben Vellekoop, he/him (Intimacy Choreographer/Dutch Language Coach) is a multidisciplinary artist in the DMV area. Intimacy credits: A Daughter’s a Daughter (TAP) and Love/Sick (PaperKids). Selected directing credits: The Audience (LTA), The Cemetery Club (ACCT), In Her Golden Years (SSS), The Last Five Years (CPA), Face Time (Infinity Stage), Love/Sick (PaperKids), Bulleketroet (Flying V Workshop) and Park Bench (Flying V and LTA Workshops). Assistant credits: Crystal Creek Motel (Flying V Workshop) and Doubt: A Parable (SeeNoSun Onstage). Education: Studio Acting Conservatory, The Barrow Group, IDC Professionals and The Acting Studio.

Mary Wallace (Costume Design) has been sewing and designing since she was a little girl. For a dozen years she worked at The Naples Players in Florida before she and her husband moved to Virginia to be close to their family. Her most recent foray into costumes included LTA’s A Christmas Carol and Moonlight and Magnolias as well as Boeing, Boeing (The Naples Players). She is thrilled to be back designing costumes and thanks LTA for the opportunity to dip her toes in again.

Alan Wray (Co-Producer) is excited to be working with Maggie again after co-producing her direction of The Haunting of Hill House. Additionally, he is excited about the fabulous cast and crew assembled to make this show a success. Alan co-produced Ripcord with Lynn O’Connor as well as the mystery A Party to Murder with Robert Kraus, both at LTA. Typically Alan is behind the scenes, designing sound. He most recently designed sound for Blue Stockings and Moonlight and Magnolias, which had an unfortunate shortened run thanks to the start of COVID. Additionally for LTA, he designed sound for The Producers (WATCH Award), Picnic (WATCH nomination), 33 Variations (LTA Award) and the chilling Widdershins (LTA Award).

Russell M. Wyland (Rigging) has been an LTA member and volunteer for 32 years. During that time, he has worked in several capacities, including seven years as President and eight years as Governor for Production. However, his first love is rigging: the art of masking the stage with drapes and making things fly from above and travel across the stage. His last rigging was for Blue Stockings. Russ will be co-producing Something Rotten! in July.