UPDATE: Undiscovered Shakespeare, The Wars of the Roses with
Santa Cruz Shakespeare &
UC Santa Cruz - Santa Cruz, CA
Henry VI Parts 1, 2, 3 &
I never thought I'd be directing plays with rehearsals and performances happening while sitting at my desk at home. But that's exactly what we've been doing.
Don't get me wrong at all. Seeing a show at Santa Cruz Shakespeare in the beautiful outdoor Grove at DeLaveaga Park is wonderful.. And I miss the process of being in a rehearsal hall with actors and production teams as we prepare to put up a show. But I've been surprised at the welcome challenge that directing "Zoom Theater" has been.
Directors, stage manager, actors, dramaturgs, scholars and professors meet in a Zoom meeting to rehearse for three days and present episodic readings of Shakespeare's history plays that make up the Wars of the Roses. Coming up with ways to make the experience engaging for the actors and the viewers has me choreographing fights with swords on Zoom, people! And it kind of works!
This is a tag team director event with director Paul Mullins taking on Part 1 & 3 Henry VI, and me taking on Part 2 Henry VI and Richard III.
Several episodes still to come
July 1, 2020 - Sept 2, 2020
Top Left to Right: Mike Ryan, Laurie Strawn, Maeve Martinez, Jerry Lloyd, Allen Gilmore
UPDATE: Amplifying the Voices
of Black Writers
Virtual Playwright's Night,
The Inkwell Theater Company
Hers and His Guests on the Podcast
What The Fockery
hosted by Nadège August
Since moving back to the Los Angeles area over a year and a half ago, I've had the pleasure of working several times with The Inkwell Theater Company. Inkwell has amazing programs including The Inkwell Theater Development Lab, and Playwright's Night which has now become a virtual experience while we're all at home and theaters are still closed for gatherings.
The Inkwell Theater Company has always had diverse programming and in light of the times that we are currently living in, producers Rosie Glen-Lambert and Daniel Schoenman wanted Playwright's Night to reflect that.
I was honored and welcomed at the chance to host the event.
It was a wonderful night with actors cold reading 10 minute pieces of full length scripts by Nickclette Izuegbu, Schereeya Reed, Matthew Robinson, Amanda Black, Khari Wyatt,
Quintin Humphrey, and Aja Houston.
Playwright's Night is a great way to see new works and great actors making the scripts come to life.
Next Virtual Playwright's night is
July 29th at 6pm PST.
I joined Mona Holmes, Shirley Jordon and Shawn Richardz for Episode 46-Interracial Love HER, where we talked about what conversations where like in our country's current racially charged times while being a black woman married to a white man.
It was a conversation I don't get to have often with women who are living a parallel life. Sharing and listening to our "how did you two meet" stories was a highlight within all of the deep and thoughtful talk that turned up. I can't wait to meet these amazing women in person. It went so well that I suggested Nadège report the other side of the story by interviewing all of our husbands in another episode.
You can hear Episode 47-Interracial Love HIM along with Episode 46 at What The Fockery ? podcast on Spotify, Apple Podcast, or Radio Public App.
Oh, and I also have a brief appearance in Episode 49- MicroAggression.
Check it out!
Episode 49 MicroAgression
UPDATE: Audiobook Narration with Deyan Audio
When No One Is Watching
by Alyssa Cole
The revamped home recording studio closet is up and running! And there's a new audiobook narration job.
I LOVED reading the "Sydney" chapters in award winning author Alyssa Cole's latest novel- a thriller set in modern day Brooklyn New York. I won't give too much away but this book is so very NOW!
“An intense psychological thriller that doesn’t let go until the final page. This is a terrific read.”
When No One Is Watching goes on sale
Sept 15, 2020. (That's my birthday, ya'll!)
Author, Alyssa Cole
UPDATE: Audiobook Narration with Deyan Audio
By C.T. Rwizi
The stay at home orders that the state of California imposed for all residents found me wondering what my work would look like while at home. I'm now working with Deyan Audio narrating audiobooks and recorded my first novel this month, Scarlett Odyssey by C.T. Rwizi and it's FANTASTIC!
I couldn't put this book down. The story follows the quest of eighteen-year-old "Salo" as he journeys to a far away city searching for answers that could save not only him but his people too. This book is Afro Futurism meets, Tolkien, meets George R.R Martin.
“Thrillingly refreshing, a propulsive story built around a fascinating cast of characters…brutal and beautiful and bold and Black in every way.” —Tor.com
Scarlet Odyssey is now on sale in hardcover and audiobook HERE
Author, C.T. Rwizi
UPDATE: The Inkwell Theater
Staged Reading of Waiting
by Aja Houston
When I first got the script for Aja Houston's new play Waiting, it blew me away.
While rehearsing we had to stop and take lots of deep breathes and check in with each other as we worked. Several times I thought I might need to take a break in the alleyway behind the theater and cry. And we laughed a lot too - Aja has a knack for inserting just the right amount of absurd humor in when you need it.
Aja Houston has crafted a power packed, thought provoking, original piece about an after life world where characters Bland, Till, Grey, Martin and Proctor must navigate even more of their fate in order to find "freedom". March 13th was the reading's first and only performance as the next day the world stopped due to the rising cases of COVID-19 and a country that was unprepared and on the verge of shutting down.
I stood at the back of the house watching the actors give there all knowing that this might be the last time I would be in a theater for a very long time.
And here we ALL are nearly five months later and the names of the characters in this play are chanted at protests as the world wakes up to what WE and so many others have known for all too long.
Police brutality must end.
Reforms must be made.
Enough is enough.
We will get back to this play. It was important on March 11, 2020 and it'll be important in our future as artists continue to "hold up the mirror", make some NOISE and accomplish real CHANGE.
If you've landed here, and you want something to do, click on one of the links below:
Justice for Breonna Taylor
by Ibram X. Kendi
LISTEN TO THIS: 1619, a New York Times audio series hosted by Nikole Hannah-Jones
Left to Right: Mihara India, Brandon Rachal, David McClain Jr.,
Carlis Shane Clark, Xan Churchwell
Left to Right: Mihara India, Inger Tudor, Brandon Rachal, Kari Nicole
Seated: Carlis Shane Clark,
Left to Right: David McClain Jr., Carlis Shane Clark, Kari Nicole, Aja Houston,
Cherish Duke, Brandon Rachal, Annie McVey, Inger Tudor,
Mihara India, Susan Dalian
Left to Right: Mihara India, Brandon Rachal, Carlis Shane Clark,
David McClain Jr., Susan Dalian,Aja Houston,
Justice for Saraya
UPDATE: AMMO Theatre Company
Staged Reading of
The Honeycomb Theory
by Garrett Mercer
For four days we workshopped a staged reading of Garrett Mercer's new play The Honeycomb Theory with AMMO Theatre at The Pico (formerly Pico Playhouse 10508 W Pico Blvd).
Garrett and I worked together closely during the weeks leading up to the first rehearsal with me asking lots of questions and Garrett skillfully coming back the next day with brave and bold rewrites. His work is honest and he shared personal details on the genesis of his play. He had such strong work to begin with, and I was eager to get it up on its feet.
I couldn't have asked for a more perfect cast which included the talents of Roland Ruiz, Claudia Doumit, Jon Chaffin, Blake Young-Fountain, Dylan Jones, Lexi Sloane and Julie Bersani with Stage Manager Camella Cooper.
Playwright Garrett Mercer has written a raw, emotional, funny play based partly in magical realism while examining the life of a young man living with bipolar disorder. The actors lit up the stage at The Pico with an all out performance that received a glorious standing ovation for their work.
What a night!
More to come from Garrett Mercer!
Left to Right: Susan Dalian, Blake Young-Fountain, Garrett Mercer, Jon Chaffin, Claudia Doumit,
In Front: Dylan Jones, Lexi Sloane
Left to Right: Jon Chaffin,
Claudia Doumit, Roland Ruiz
UPDATE: Happy New Year!
Directing 4 New Plays in LA
2020 has started off with a bang! After finally battling a several weeks long flu that started on a New Year's Eve ski trip. I'm healthy now finally and ready to get back to work.
First up...I'm directing a staged reading of Garrett Mercer's play The Honeycomb Theory with AMMO Theatre at The Pico (formerly Pico Playhouse 10508 W Pico Blvd) on Feb 29th 8pm.
VS. Theater 5453 W Pico Blvd
Then, I'm happy to be back directing for a second time with Pasadena Playhouse and Cal Tech's MACH 33 Festival of New Science-Driven Plays on April 2 at 2pm at The Pasadena Playhouse. I'll be directing a staged reading of playwright Hannah Manikowski's latest work called The Sunrise From the Moon.
And last, I'm thrilled to be working with Amanda Black again directing her new play Switches in a performance reading as part of the USC MFA Playwrights program on April 11 and 12 at 6pm at Cammilleri Hall at USC.
UPDATE: AMMO Theatre Company, Los Angeles- One In The Chamber: Things You Thought You Knew 4Plays/2 Nights
In the fall of each year, AMMO Theatre Company presents an evening of 10 minute plays written by local playwrights. A great part of AMMO's mission was on display on these two nights: "...celebrate unique stories that hopefully inspires our Los Angeles community to do the same."
I got to direct a haunting and emotionally charged piece by Dionna M. Daniel, A Bagfull of Stars, with a wonderful cast including Juanita Jenkins, Lyndie Greenwood and Jason Ryan Lovett. Can't wait to see what's next from Dionna.
Left to right: Dionna M. Daniel, Juanita Jenkins, Susan Dalian, Jason Ryan Lovett
Left to right: Jason Ryan Lovett, Susan Dalian, Juanita Jenkins
UPDATE: The Inkwell Theater, Los Angeles- staged reading of
Broken a new play
written by Aaron Braxton
For the past 8 seasons The Inkwell Theater Development Lab at VS. Theatre has brought a host of diverse voices from the playwriting community of Los Angeles as it "aims to bring the writer out of their office, or coffee shop, and into the rehearsal room."
It was such a pleasure being able to direct the first staged reading of their 9th Season with Aaron Braxton's play Broken about family, loss and healing. I had a wonderful cast who all jumped on board for a super quick three day rehearsal. And they brought it!
A special congrats and thank you to the production staff of The Inkwell Theater- Annie McVey, Daniel Shoenman, Rosie Glen-Lambert and Jeffree Davis!
Left to right: Mihara India, Aaron Braxton, Susan Dalian
Left to right: Jeffree Davis, Yvans Jourdain, Aaron Braxton, Eddie Goines, Celestial, Pamela Shaddock, Derek Shaun, James T. Lawson II, Patricia Belcher, Mihara India, Susan Dalian, Annie McVey
Seated Front: Elisa Perry, Brandon Rachal
UPDATE: Meet Cute- matchmaking for theater people! -
Los Angeles, CA
Catch A Fly
written by Amanda Black
Meet Cute is the brainchild of directors Hannah Wolf and Katie Lindsay . "We introduce playwrights and directors and bring them together to stage a short play. All of our writer and director pairs work together for the first time. We create connections that last and celebrate our growing Los Angeles theater community."
Monday night's sold out crowd brought out some of the best in the LA theater community. I had a wonderful time directing an amazing cast that featured Christian A. Henley, Jalen Stewart, Yolanda Snowball and Karl Calhoun. We were all truly blessed to work with playwright Amanda Black's edgy, laugh filled piece that packed a power punch surprise ending.
It was the third Meet Cute, and a ticket everyone will want a seat at as word continues to spread about this exciting new event.
Left to right: Yolanda Snowball, Karl Calhoun, Jalen Stewart, Susan Dalian, (center) Christian A. Henley
UPDATE: BITE ME accepted into Festival Angaelica Film Festival-
Duluth, MN October 9-13, 2019
BITE ME has been selected to be screened at Festival Angaelica Film Festival this year in Duluth, MN. This year Festival Angaelica partners with Catalyst for five days of film programming from all over the world. We are so excited to be a part of this and can't wait to see what Duluth has in store for us.
UPDATE: The Narcissist Next Door SOLD OUT audiences for all shows and awards at
Hollywood Fringe 2019-
Los Angeles, CA
Ellen Buckley's new play The Narcissist Next Door had a great run during Hollywood Fringe 2019. Shows started with a sold out preview and remained sold out during the 6 show run. To top it all off the play was awarded a Fringe ENCORE as well as a Better Lemons DoubleSWEET Award where critics and audiences agree that the show is SWEET!
The cast included Luca Malacrino reprising his role as "Tony" the narcissist from the 11.19 staged reading at The Matrix, along with Kincaid Walker, Michael Nardelli, Réchard François, Dawn Joyal, Maggie Miguel, Bryce Harrow and Rob Harrow.
UPDATE: BITE ME - the short film will have its World Premiere screening at Mammoth Lakes
Film Festival 2019 -
Mammoth Lakes, CA
I am thrilled to announce that the dark comedy short film I co-wrote and co-directed with Marcus Nobreus will be screened at MLFF 2019 as part of their popular Saturday Morning Kids Block. The screening is at 10am at the US Forest Service Theater and includes live action and animated films from Europe being translated live by the funny and talented Flula Borg .
MLLF was recently named for the 5th year in a row one of the TOP 50 FILM FESTIVALS WORTH THE ENRTY FEE by Movie Maker Magazine.
UPDATE: The Narcissist Next Door to have full production mounted as part of Hollywood Fringe 2019-
Los Angeles, CA
I'll be directing a full production of the hilarious comedy The Narcissist Next Door written by Ellen Buckley as part of Hollywood Fringe 2019 at the Dorie Theater-The Complex Hollywood. The show will preview June 8th with shows June 15, 19, 23, & 29 at Dorie Theater-The Complex Hollywood. Actor Luca Malacrino reprises the role of "Tony" the narcissistic neighbor who descends into the lives of best friends Sebastian and Kate, played by the actress Kincaid Walker. The rest of the cast will be announced soon, but in the meantime if you'd like to learn more about the show, and where to purchase tickets visit https://susandalian.wixsite.com/narcissistnextdoor
UPDATE: The Narcissist Next Door staged reading at
The Matrix Theater-
Los Angeles, CA
On Monday night we had performance of a staged reading that I directed of Ellen Buckley's new play The Narcissist Next Door. We had great energy, feedback and laughter from the audience and Ellen is eager to get the play mounted in a full production.
Stay tuned for more to come from Ellen Buckley and forThe Narcissist Next Door.