The Magic Lamp Cast and Crew
Rotimi Agbabiaka is an actor, writer, director, and teaching artist. Most recently, Rotimi originated the role of Salima in House of Joy (California Shakespeare Theatre) and Cellphone/Narrator in If Pretty Hurts Ugly Must Be a Muhfucka (Playwrights Horizons, NYC). Other acting credits include Father Comes Home From The Wars ... (Yale Rep/American Conservatory Theatre), Black Rider (Shotgun Players), Bootycandy (Brava Theater, TBA award), runboyrun (Magic Theatre), and several shows with the Tony Award-winning San Francisco Mime Troupe. Rotimi penned the solo shows Homeless, Type/Caste (TBA award), and MANIFESTO; co-wrote the musical, Seeing Red; and dazzles nightlife stages (as alter ego Miss Cleo Patois). www.rotimionline.com | Photo credit: Cody Williams
Rinabeth Apostol was most recently seen at SF Playhouse in the musical Starting Here, Starting Now. Recent pre-pandemic projects included Groundhog Day: The Musical (SF Playhouse), The Chinese Lady (Magic Theater), House of Joy (CalShakes), Vietgone at Capital Stage, A Thousand Splendid Suns (Seattle Rep, ACT) and the world premieres of Two Mile Hollow (Ferocious Lotus); and we, the invisibles (Humana Festival, ATL). Select favorite credits include The Four Immigrants: An American Musical Manga (TheatreWorks), The Cable Car Nymphomaniac (FOGG Theater), Imelda: The Musical (East West Players), Avenue Q (San Jose Stage), peerless (Marin Theatre Company; BATCC Award), The Hard Problem and Monstress (ACT), The Kite Runner and Of Mice and Men (San Jose Rep), and Red (TheatreWorks). Rinabeth is currently an Artist-in-Residence at the College of William and Mary School of Theater and Dance. www.rinabeth.com
Genie of the Lamp
JM Appleby was born and raised in Redwood City and was a principal actor at Beach Blanket Babylon playing beloved roles that included James Brown, Bill Cosby, Barack Obama, Prince, and Serena Williams. From East Coast to West Coast, he is very thankful for all of the support from his family and friends, most importantly his mother. He thanks his mother for always being his number one fan and for encouraging him to do what he loves and love what he does! He shares this from George Carlin: “Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath; people who see life as anything more than pure entertainment are missing the point”. Photo credit: Tracy Martin
Jaime Miller Bardacke
Jaime Bardacke has been finding joy in movement since she took her first steps. A native of Watsonville, California, she grew up doing gymnastics and fell in love with dance as a college student in Los Angeles. Jaime has been living and dancing in the Bay Area for over 20 years. She has had the privilege of studying and performing with talented artists including Madonna Grimes, Micaya, Strong Current Dance Company, LV Dance Collective, Stacey Printz, and Jenni Bregman. Jaime is thrilled to be a part of the Magic Lamp production. By day, she is a clinical social worker in San Francisco.
Curt Branom performed as a principal cast member in Beach Blanket Babylon for 25 years. During that time, he inhabited countless roles, from the flamboyant King Louis XIV to Bernie Sanders. Locally, he has performed with the SF Symphony, SF Gay Men’s Chorus, Festival Opera, and Peninsula Civic Light Opera, where he was nominated as Best Actor by the Bay Area Theater Critics Circle for Sweet Charity. New York credits include Hurlyburly, A Lie of the Mind and Our Life and Times. Curt is a co-founder of Pacific Singers and Actors Workshop, a nonprofit that serves Bay Area students, and received a 2019 Jefferson Award for Public Service. He lives in San Francisco with his husband, Jake Heggie. His greatest role to date is being Grayson’s dad. www.curtbranom.com | Photo credit: Tanya Constantine
Jen Brooks is fulfilling her lifelong dream of being a singing chicken. She is very egg-cited to flap her way into your hearts in her first Panto production. Her love of singing chickens began at the tender age of five when she discovered a record of Disney songs featuring Clara Cluck, the opera singing chicken and the rest is history. Off she flew to New York City to train and perform. An AMDA Graduate, Jen has performed in the international and national touring companies of A Chorus Line (Cassie, Val, Maggie) and the International-Pacific Islands premier of Mamma Mia! (Donna). Other credits include Singin’ in The Rain (Lina Lamont), The Drowsy Chaperone (Title Role), Nice Work If You Can Get It (Billie), Into the Woods (The Witch) and CATS (Rumpleteaser). www.thejenbrooks.com | Photo credit: Andrew Barry Fritz
Maggie Connard is a teaching artist and performer who graduated with a BA in Dance from Point Park University. She teaches Rhythm & Motion and barre fitness at ODC, and has taught ballet, jazz, tap and musical theatre dance to children and adults. Maggie has performed with EmDance, Leyya Tawil's Dance Elixir, Deborah Slater Dance Theatre, and Printz Dance Project, among others. She also loves musical theatre and has performed in local productions of A Chorus Line, Singing in the Rain, Chicago, Cabaret, and White Christmas.
Ruby Day is thrilled to be back on stage after a long hiatus from theatre. You may have last seen her playing Snow White, as part of the final cast of San Francisco’s iconic Beach Blanket Babylon. During the pandemic, Ruby sharpened her Voice Acting Skills, booked a few commercials, and taught many virtual classes to young and eager actors. She couldn’t be more honored to step back on stage and make people laugh along side some wonderful new friends, and so many of her Beach Blanket Babylon Alumni. Enjoy the Panto!
Merrill Grant moved to the Bay Area from New York a few months before the pandemic and is thrilled to join this performing family and kick her heels up onstage again. In New York, she performed solo at Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall, originated roles in workshops of new musicals, and was a regular performer with the New York Gilbert and Sullivan players (NY and tours) and the Ziegfeld Society. She originated the role of Marilyn Miller in a fully staged biographical musical titled “The First Marilyn…Marilyn Miller.” Her cabaret act on Shirley Temple played the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. In 2020, she created and filmed a new act with Peter Grunberg which is available to view on www.merrillgrant.com. Photo credit: Ben Krantz
Albert Hodge is excited to be making his Presidio Theatre debut in this production. He most recently appeared as Eddie/Dr. Scott in The Rocky Horror Show at the Ray of Light Theatre. Other favorite roles include Horse in The Full Monty (Bay Area Musicals), Audrey II in Little Shop of Horrors, Belize in Angels in America, Hud in Hair, and Juan Peron in Evita. He is proud to have been a member of the final cast of Steve Silver's Beach Blanket Babylon after a run of 20 years with the show. Albert also works as an instructor for acting, improv, and singing with Pacific Singers and Actors Workshop, which is an afterschool program for Bay Area youth.
Lauren Howard is ecstatic to be back on the stage! She was a principle in San Francisco’s iconic Beach Blanket Babylon from 2015-2018) and has performed in many regional productions including Man of La Mancha (Aldonza), Ragtime (Evelyn Nesbit), and The Taming of the Shrew (Kate/Shrew). Her film/television credits include Sweet Bitter, Succession, and Beautiful Boy and she has done commercial work for McDonald’s, Ancestry.com, Bann Resort, and Source Naturals. You can also find her selling houses with eXp Realty on TeamFAST, or walking dogs in the neighborhood! Lauren would be nowhere without the unwavering love and support of her amazing family, Gary, & close friends. @lolo_how_b | www.laurenehoward.com
Matthew Kropschot is grateful to be returning to the stage after over a year of consistently irritating his partner with his at home “performances.” Matthew has worked around the Bay Area since graduating from college in 2019, namely with The San Jose Stage Company and The Jewel Theatre Company in Santa Cruz. Matthew has a passion for both the stage and the screen, recently appearing in the HBO short film (available for streaming) 1, 2, 3 All Eyes on Me, as well as various small projects around the Bay. Aside from acting, Matthew also moonlights as a wedding filmmaker. @cream0fthekrop | Photo credit: kiayamariephotography.com
Genie of the Ring
Renée Lubin is noted by the San Francisco Chronicle as a city treasure for her 34-year run with Beach Blanket Babylon. Being a San Francisco native, she has performed with numerous theatrical companies. Favorite shows include Dreamgirls, Ain’t Misbehavin’, and For Colored Girls. She has performed with TheatreWorks, San Francisco Symphony, San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus, San Francisco Giants, San Francisco 49er’s, Oakland A’s, and the San Jose Sharks. Renée is the Vocal Jazz Coach at San Francisco State University and continues to perform at various jazz venues throughout the Bay Area. She is a proud recipient of the San Francisco Mayor’s Community Stalwart Award by the Human Rights Commission. Visit www.reneelubin.com. Blessings! Photo credit: Anna Ty Bergman
Dian Sitip Meechai
Dian Sitip Meechai is a singer, dancer, songwriter, and former contortionist. She has performed in numerous productions from musical theater, concert halls, and an international sailing cruise line. She's a recording artist and NASM-CPT. Favorite credits include The Gondoliers (Giulia) and The Roar of the Greasepaint (The Girl), singing onboard the Silver Spirit, dancing/choreographing for SF’s Broadway Bares and contorting at the former Supperclub. Born in the “Boogie Down" Bronx, Dian aspired to perform from her earliest days. She is a graduate of Northwestern University. In 2007, Dian moved to San Francisco and fell in love with the city. Photo credit: D. Carrillo
Scott Reardon was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area and has performed with Beach Blanket Babylon, TheatreWorks of Silicon Valley (Big River), Utah Shakespeare Festival (Lend Me A Tenor: The Musical – World Premiere), Musical Theatre West (Thoroughly Modern Millie), and 5-Star Theatricals (Kiss Me, Kate; Once Upon A Mattress), to name a few, as well as commercial work for Visa, Samsung, Philips, Dell, Verizon, LinkedIn, Logitech, LG, Dolby, Google, Cisco Systems, Symantec and more. He attended UC Irvine receiving honors in both Musical Theatre and Acting, and received his M.A, from Aliant International University. He is an Actor’s Equity Association’s Roger Sturtevant Awardee. www.ScottReardon.net | Photo credit: Aly Blue Headshots
Paul Renolis is a SF-based actor, dancer, and choreographer. Paul has been cast in numerous theatrical roles with companies such as Boston Stage Co. and Theatre Rhinoceros. He is a company actor with Left Coast Theatre Co. and is cast in the web series, Strings Attached, playing a supporting lead role (Cinema 3.0, in post-production). Paul is a hip hop dancer and choreographer and has represented dance companies on the East and West coasts—most recently with Mind Over Matter, directed by choreographer Allan Frias. Paul was selected by Tony Award-nominated choreographer Sam Pinkleton to contribute to his 2019 residency at The Ground Floor at Berkeley Rep. Photo credit: Paul Renolis
Danny Scheie has played principal roles at South Coast Rep, Arena Stage and Folger Theater (DC), The Old Globe in San Diego, Yale Rep, Trinity Rep (RI), Arizona Theater Company, Asolo Rep (FL), Actors Theater of Louisville, Pasadena Playhouse, A Noise Within (LA), Two River Theater (NJ), Merrimack Rep (MA), and in the Bay Area at Berkeley Rep, American Conservatory Theater, Z Space, Aurora, Magic, Rhino, TheatreWorks, Marin, The Marsh, San Jose Rep and thirteen seasons each with California Shakespeare Theater (where he last played Richard III) and Shakespeare Santa Cruz (including three years as Artistic Director). He recently appeared in world premieres by Amy Freed, Peter Sinn Nachtrieb, and Daniel Handler. He received three Bay Area Critics Circle awards for leading actor, two for supporting actor, and one for directing, as well as the inaugural TBA award for leading actor. He is an emeritus professor at UCSC and holds a PhD from University of California Berkeley. Photo credit: Norbert von der Groeben
Sharon Shao (she/her) is a Bay Area native actor, teaching artist, and musician. She holds a double B.A. in Theatre Arts and Psychology from UC Santa Cruz. Her favorite local credits include Winter’s Tale (CalShakes), Good Person of Szechwan (CalShakes), Hamlet (Ubuntu Theater Project), Iron Shoes (Shotgun Players), and UTOPIA (CuttingBall Theater), her virtual theater premiere during Covid-19. Aside from acting, Sharon is passionate about teaching voice and drama to young students, and collaborating on various interdisciplinary art projects with her collectives, SoulTalk and The Forum. Sharon dedicates this show, and all things, to her guiding spirit, her beloved mama. www.sharonshao.biz | Photo credit: Gabrielle Battista
Gary Stanford Jr.
Gary Stanford Jr. is a Bay Area native who has been involved with singing, dancing, and acting since a young child. He has appeared in over 80 musicals with various theater companies and recent productions include Schoolhouse Rock Live Jr (2021) (director, choreographer, music director), 2020 Once on This Island (2020) (director, choreographer), and Into The Woods (2019) (Rapunzel’s Prince). Since 2019, he has been running his own theater company, North California Arts Collective and is on the Board of Directors for Z-Space theater (San Francisco), Woodside Community Theater, and Hillbarn Theater (Foster City). He retired from a 20-year tech career in 2019 and became deeply involved in education/mentoring and contracting in regards to social justice awareness (such as racism, colorism and emotional intelligence). He has his own radio podcast show, Planet Bay Area that is also dedicated to social justice, decolonization principles, self-care and empowerment. Photo credit: Steve Fogel
Ryan Patrick Welsh
Ryan Patrick (RP) Welsh (he/she/they), The 8th Best Legs in San Francisco, is delighted to be making his Presidio Theatre debut with The Magic Lamp. RP has performed extensively in the Bay Area for the last 6 years most notably with The San Francisco Neo-Futurists, Peaches Christ Productions, & Baloney - San Francisco's Gay All-Male Revue, which she also helps to produce behind the scenes. RP can often be found tearing up dance floors around the Bay Area or titillating crowds at Martunis. Much love & thanks to their sister, Sarah Catherine and their friends and family. Photo credit: Jason Hanasik
*The Actor appears through the courtesy of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States