Performances

Friday December 21
Opening
8pm
Saturday December 22 11am
Saturday December 22 3pm
Sunday December 23 1pm

Running time: Approximately 2 hours with one 15 minute intermission
Recommended minimum age: 4

Venue
Herbst Theatre
401 Van Ness Avenue
San Francisco, CA, 94102
Nearest BART Station: Civic Center

Plan Your Visit

Tickets
Box Seats (Reserved Seating): $45
Orchestra (Reserved Seating): $35
Balcony (General Seating): $25

Group Ticket Discount: 15% off purchase of 10+ tickets

City Box Office handles both single ticket and group ticket sales.
415.392.4400
Weekdays: 9:30am–5:00pm
Saturdays: 12:00pm–4:00pm

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Subscriptions
Attend the three remaining productions of the 2018–19 season (Cinderella, Black Eagles, and Macbeth) at a single discounted price of only $75. Savings of over $35!

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Press Coverage
San Francisco Chronicle
Events and entertainment for week of Dec. 16
by Kathleen Dixon

San Francisco Examiner
Holiday Theater 2018: ‘Tis the season onstage
by Leslie Katz

The Mercury News
Holidays 2018: A rundown of SF Bay Area’s ‘Nutcrackers,’ Scrooges and ‘Messiahs’ — and much more

Wanda’s Picks
December 2018

96.5 KOIT Radio
See Jazz in Cinderella!! December 21-23 at Herbst Theater #sf
by Teri King

Broadway World San Francisco
African-American Shakespeare Company Presents 2018 Version Of CINDERELLA

Red Tricycle
Holidays on Stage: Festive Theater Performances for All Ages
by Kate Loweth

December 21–23, 2018

Cinderella

Written by African-American Shakespeare Company Members
Directed by Mark Allan Davis

An annual holiday treat, this timeless tale, brought to whimsical, magical life just in time for the holiday season, is an uplifting re-telling of the classic fairytale, featuring all of the pageantry, hilarity, and charm of the original, but with a soulful twist.

#CinderellaAASC

Director’s Note

When AASC Artistic Director L. Peter Callender asked if I was interested in directing the treasured holiday production of Cinderella I was honored, surprised and, prior to saying ‘yes’, terrified.

Cinderella in English, Cenerentola in Italian, Aschenputtel in German, and Bibi Majivu in Swahili. The Cinderella story transcends cultures, continents, and language. Her story is about dreams, wishes, but most of all, hers is a story about a loving person discovering love in others even while surrounded by disdain. She desires, like so many of us, to have a seat at the table.

She seeks her ancestors finding strength in memories of her parents while indentured to her father’s widow — her stepmother Evahcruel Stepp and her daughters, Zonita & Shaniqua. Cinderella dreams of dancing at the Prince’s Ball. She calls forth her Fairy Godparent the wisecracking brother of her Fairy Godmother — who’s away at a Fairy Rights Conference in the Kingdom’s Capital. Cinderella finds she is in accepting and talented hands and the magic ensues!

Even while disparaged by her family she never gives up. Isn’t this most of us during the holidays? Don’t we persevere through things we normally just wouldn’t? The holiday travel delays, the gift buying, the agony of waiting in lines. Don’t we move through situations which would make us Scrooge-like, instead of more tolerant, patient and less prone to disparage others? The magic of Cinderella is that she goes high when they go low. And that IS magic these days!

Cinderella is a story where we can laugh and revel in knowing we will find love and the magic of finding it within reveals it surrounding us! That’s when we discover our joy is connected to everyone else’s.

I thank L. Peter Callender and Sherri Young for this opportunity to connect ever more deeply with the beautiful community of lovers of a damn good story that I have so enjoyed reflecting on and ultimately bringing anew, to you, kind and wonderful patrons of a great theatre company!

Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Buon Natale, Frohe Weinachten—

— Mark Allan Davis

Cast

Cinderella — Loreigna Sinclair
Loreigna Sinclair is so excited to be in her first production with the African-American Shakespeare Company! Originally from Vallejo, CA, she graduated from AMDA College and Conservatory for the Performing Arts in Los Angeles with a Bachelors Degree in Musical Theatre. Since graduating her favorite credits include: Lorrell Robinson in Dreamgirls with Berkeley Playhouse, Esmeralda u/s in Hunchback of Notre Dame with Bay Area Musicals, JoAnn/Ensemble in Dreamgirls International Tour with McCoy Rigby Entertainment, Ensemble in The Wedding Singer with Bay Area Musicals, Ensemble in Rock of Ages with Pacific Coast Repertory Theatre, and originating the title role of Frances “RED” Reed in the original workshop of RED A New Musical. You can catch her next in the premier of the new musical She Persisted with Bay Area Children’s Theatre. Loreigna gives thanks to her family and friends for all their love and support. And Loreigna says, “to my amazing fiancé Jordan, thank you for helping me make all my dreams come true. I love you.”
Evil Stepmother — Clara 'Clarae' McDaniel
Clara “Clarae” McDaniel is a native San Franciscan singer and actress, and is very grateful to be returning to the African-American Shakespeare Company in this year’s Cinderella production. Clara has shared her vocal skills with gospel choirs, rhythm & blues groups, bands and as a background singer for well known artists. Some of most recent works include: ACT/Infinity Production’s Crack Rumble & Fly, African-American Shakespeare Company’s productions of The Colored Museum and Cinderella and has done several other works such as: Black Nativity, Your Arms Too Short to Box With God, Ain’t Mis Behavin, Black & Blue, Waiting to be Invited, Eubie Blake Review, and Hit It all with the Lorraine Hansberry Theatre. Clara has also completed extensive classes: Movement of Actors, Scene Studies, Voice Coaching, Choir, Piano all with City College of San Francisco. Clara currently works as a Paraeducator with the Paraeducator Leadership Network in the San Francisco Unified School District. She is the mother of three and the grandmother of five. She is a member of Destiny Christian Fellowship Church, Fremont, CA.
Zonita — Devin A. Cunningham
Rickey G. Soto III is an actor, singer, and dancer recently transplanted to the Bay Area from the central valley of California. He is currently studying at San Francisco State University. Most of his experience and training comes from his time spent at Modesto Junior College near his hometown. He is excited to be working with the African-American Shakespeare Company for the second time after playing the role of Prince Charming in last year’s production of Cinderella. He hopes this will be a stepping stone to a bright future in show business.
Page — Jaren Erville
Jaren Erville is pleased to be making his debut with the African-American Shakespeare Company. Jaren is a member of the Bac-a-Dos theatre club at his school and last year traveled to Dallas, Texas to participate in the International Theatre Festival. He would like to thank his family and friends for all their love and support.
Fairy Godfather — ShawnJ West
ShawnJ West’s recent African-American Shakespeare Company credits include: A Streetcar Named Desire as Steve, A Midsummer Night’s Dream as Bottom, and August Wilson’s Jitney as busy body Turnbo. Favorite roles include Sterling North in Permanent Collection with Piedmont Center for the Arts; Lady Percy in The Free Theatre’s Henry IV, Part I; George in Of Mice and Men with Role Players Ensemble Theatre; Buckingham in Richard III and Pandarus in Troilus and Cressida with Impact Theatre; and Dogberry in Much Ado About Nothing and Gooper in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof with African-American Shakespeare Company. As well as challenging roles as Belize in Angels in America; Perestroika, Gidger in The Violet Hour; Raul in Extremities; and Robert in The Exonerated. He’s also enjoyed roles on the musical side of theatre in Grease, Guys and Dolls, West Side Story and A Chorus Line. ShawnJ says, “here’s to magic! Believe!!!”
Shayla — Jazz Amira Hardrict
Jazz Amira Hardrict is a nine year old 4th grade student at Ile Omode African Centered School. She is thrilled to once again be in the cast of Cinderella. At age six, she played the character of Young Cinderella and last year played the character of Sherena. She loves the experience of being on stage dreams of being a successful performing artist and a pediatrician who discovers the cure for Sickle Cell. At age seven, she was cast as Lil Simba in 3Crosses’s production of The Lion King. In addition, she played the monkey and a street Urchin in Aladdin, Lil Magic in Dreamgirls, a NYC street kid in Rent, and a Parisian child in Funny Face. Jazz studies ballet, martial arts, gymnastics, and African Dance. Jazz is in eager anticipation of visiting Paris this year for the first time with her Uncle Jaredt. She is extremely grateful to the African-American Shakespeare Company for providing an outlet for young artists to shine on stage and for treating her so warmly.
Sherena — Raina Bhargava
Raina Bhargava is thrilled to be performing with the African-American Shakespeare Company for the first time. Aside from performing at San Mateo High School, she has trained at Interlochen Center for the Arts and with the Joffrey Ballet School. Most recently, she performed in Begets: Fall of a High School Ronin (Mary) with the A.C.T. Youth Conservatory. Off the stage, she loves to teach dance, create clothing, and is currently writing her first short film. She would like to thank her family and friends for their support, and hopes you have a magical time at today’s show.
Young Cinderella — Nakayla Lyn Herrring
Nakayla Lyn Herring is extremely excited and honored to be working with the African-American Shakespeare Company. She’s a 1st grader at Alice Fong Yu Chinese Immersion School, where she is learning to speak and write in Cantonese. While dancing with Nitty Dupree Dance Studio, she has performed in the San Francisco 2016 Juneteenth Festival. She won the 2017 Sacramento Convention Center Aloha Cheer Championship and also won awards in the 2017 Jamz Cheer And Dance at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom. Nakayla enjoys making people laugh and smile. In Nakayla’s spare time she enjoys swimming and playing tennis.
Mother & Dance Ensemble — Tyler Vernae Alsobrook
Tyler Vernae Alsobrook is an actor, singer, and performer from the Bay Area. This is her first production with the African-American Shakespeare Company and she is very grateful to have been given an opportunity to be part of this venture. Her experience in theater and stage production over the years officially began in 2006 at the Berkeley Repertory Theater. In the Summer of 2007, she trained and performed at the Alvin Ailey Dance Camp at UC Berkeley. After receiving a degree in Performing Arts at Chabot Community College in 2016, she began working locally as an extra/background in films and television. Tyler has always had a passion for acting and entertainment. She believes in changing the way people see life through visual representation.
Dance Ensemble — Jarrett Holley
Jarrett Holley is proud to continuing his work with the African-American Shakespeare Company after previously being in A Midsummer’s Night Dream, Cinderella 2017, A Streetcar Named Desire, and Richard III. He is originally from Memphis, TN, but has lived and worked in the Bay Area for over 10 years after graduating from the Academy of Art University with an AA in Motion Pictures and Television here in the city. He has a passion for languages, swords, and stage combat and is known as the resident Star Wars encyclopedia among his friends.
Dance Ensemble — Tiffany Rabb
Prince Charming — Tré Zijuan Tyler
Tré Zijuan Tyler is a fourth-year student at San Francisco State University where he is studying to earn a Bachelors Degree in Drama with an emphasis in Performance as well as a minor in Education. A recipient of the Clarence Miller Musical Theatre Scholarship, he has taught musical theatre at several theatre education institutions in California including Christian Youth Theatre in San Diego and Pied Piper Players in San Mateo. Cinderella is Tré’s first production with the African-American Shakespeare Company. Other favorite credits of his include Songs for a New World with Breakthrough Workshop Theatre as well as Hud in Hair and Officer Lockstock in Urinetown: The Musical at San Francisco State University.
Shaniqua — Rickey G. Soto III
Rickey G. Soto III is an actor, singer, and dancer recently transplanted to the Bay Area from the central valley of California. He is currently studying at San Francisco State University. Most of his experience and training comes from his time spent at Modesto Junior College near his hometown. He is excited to be working with the African-American Shakespeare Company for the second time after playing the role of Prince Charming in last year’s production of Cinderella. He hopes this will be a stepping stone to a bright future in show business.
Duke & Father — Todd Risby
Todd Risby has an extensive career as an actor. At the age of nine years old, Todd played Percy the Slave-boy in Helen Keller’s the Miracle Worker. He also played Ira Aldridge in Zero Hour Nine AM at Richland Community College Theatre and the Mayor in Hubba City at Black Repertory Group. Other credits include: television series Midnight Caller; the film Sneakers and Nine Months; independent film Drowning Hypothetically; and as a college professor in Joe Runs Dry, an independent student project produced by Expression College for Digital Arts in Emeryville, CA. This past summer, Todd played the role of Clabe Sutton in the Western, The Rogues of Flat Oak. The film premiers this December. He also stared as Sam, the art instructor in the short film, The Blind Artist. Todd just finished a short film called Film Never Lies where he played photographer Todd Simmons. Early next year, Todd will start filming and co-starring in the action drama Talk to the Gun, scheduled for release in the Spring of 2019. His last appearance on the African-American Shakespeare Company stage was in the roles of The Man, Solider, and Walter Lee Younger in The Colored Museum.
Page — Sumayyah Nuriddin-Green
Sumayyah Nuriddin-Green is delighted to return to the African-American Shakespeare Company’s production of Cinderella for the third time in a row! At Marin Theater Company she’s played the role of Mrs. Griswald in 13 Reasons Not to be in a Play; Lucy in You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown, and Mary Lennox in The Secret Garden. In last year’s production of Cinderella she was cast as Shayla. In SFBATCO’s co-production of Cinderella she appeared as Young Cinderella and one of the Mice. Sumayyah is a Student Ambassador for Black Girls Code, she has held conversations with leaders at Dropbox and Lyft, spoke at Watermark Innovation Conference 2018 and BoxWorks 18 discussing the importance of STEAM education. A few of Sumayyah’s favorite things to do is bake cookies, create D.I.Y.’s, and write poems. Instagram: @allaboutsumayyah
Grandmother — Jan Hunter
Jan Hunter is excited to return to the African-American Shakespeare Company (AASC) stage, having recently appeared as the Lady in Brown in Ntozake Shange’s For Colored Girls… and Ms. Ruth, the neighbor and the nurse in A Streetcar Named Desire. She previously performed in AASC’s productions as Jocasta in Oedipus, Lady Teazle in School for Scandal, and Ms. Higgins in Pygmalion. She has also performed with the Lorraine Hansberry Theatre in their heyday and now sits on their Board of Directors. Jan was born and raised in Los Angeles and was one of the Original Soul Train Dancers. She received her B.A. in Drama, M.A. in Education and M.A. in Teacher of the Arts. A newly retired Theatre Educator, she was the Director of the Performing Arts Academy at Skyline High School for 24 years, directing and producing 4 shows a year, escorting students to NYC every year for a theatre intensive. Jan does dramatic storytelling at a private school in the Bay Area for youths. Jan thanks God for this blessing and she is especially grateful to be performing with her granddaughter for the first time. She appreciates her family and community for their loving support. Jan says, “The Drama Lives!!!”
Shayla — Patricia-Blue Pharr
Patricia-Blue Pharr, a second grader, is excited to make her acting debut with the African-American Shakespeare Company. Blue, as she goes by, loves gymnastics, swimming, and playing make believe with her dolls. Blue takes violin lessons and has taken piano as well. Her favorite subjects in school are religion and music. Blue has participated in theater camp with Musically Minded Academy since she was three years old and participated in workshops with Kids ‘N Film and Children’s Fairy Land. Blue was also a 2018 Miss California Princess. Blue sells lemonade and hot chocolate to raise money to buy blankets for the homeless.
Sherena — Zaire Herd
Zaire Herd is an 11 year old student, dancer, and actress from San Francisco, California and she is very excited to be working with African-American Shakespeare Company. She is a 6th grader at Gateway Middle School in San Francisco, and enjoys her student leadership positions in the student council and being the Captain of the JV Girls Volleyball Team. Zaire has a passion for dancing and has danced professionally with Bay Area dance groups and has traveled as far as Los Angeles, training with Anthony Burrell for a week learning technical dance pieces. Zaire worked with the African-American Shakespeare Company as Page in their 2017 production of Cinderella. Zaire also enjoys playing sports such as flag football, basketball, and baseball.
Young Cinderella — Samaiya Jae Morthel
Samaiya Jae Morthel is a kindergartner at The San Francisco School. She turned six this September. Samaiya loves attending musicals and stage plays. At the age of five, she set a goal of attending 25 productions per year and keeps a scrapbook to capture the experiences. Samaiya loves art, reading, baking cupcakes, and playing pretend with her friends. A self-proclaimed fashionista, she loves to shop and dress herself and others. Samaiya wants to be a fashion model, designer, chef, veterinarian, and a leader when she grows up.
Dance Ensemble — Darlene Aniebonam
Darlene Aniebonam is a professional actress, dancer, and model based in the Bay Area. She has studied dance for 15 years specializing in ballet, jazz, contemporary, hip hop, and West African. Darlene received her Bachelors in Kinesiology with a minor in Dance from George Mason University (GMU). She has performed with Division 1 dance teams that received the UDA Award for top 3 in the nation for three years consecutively. Darlene has also been a soloist for the GMU African American Showcase, as well as danced professionally for Oracle World and Dreamforce. She has choreographed and trained young dancers for three years, and loves to teach individuals how to develop a love for performing and dancing.
Dance Ensemble — Tiffani Amber Williams
Tiffani Amber Williams, a Barbadian native, is a Bachelors of Fine Art Acting major at the Academy of Art University (AAU) in San Francisco. She earned her Associate Degree in Theatre Arts at the Barbados Community College and has experience in teaching, directing, and performing in many acclaimed theatrical productions and films in Barbados; where she won the award for Best Actress in the short film One More Time at the 2016 Barbados Visual Media Awards. Tiffani recently performed in AAU School of Acting’s Fall mid-semester play THIS and spring musical production The Drowsy Chaperone; which were both directed by Clark Houston-Lewis. Tiffani recently played the role of Kaneesha Sharpton in the world premiere of the play JIVE produced by Windy City Productions; directed by playwright Susan Rabin. She is extremely excited to be a part of African-American Shakespeare Company’s 2018 cast of Cinderella.
Dance Ensemble — Bryan Rodriguez

Production Team

Director & Choreographer — Mark Allan Davis
A native New Yorker, Mark Allan Davis is an accomplished director, choreographer, playwright, and actor. After 11 years in Europe, primarily in Germany, he performed for two seasons with Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company. He’s an original cast member of the Broadway production of The Lion King and appeared at the Minskoff Theatre (NYC) for the twentieth anniversary gala reunion with Sir Elton John in 2017. Recent productions as director and/or choreographer: Mahalia, Raisin, Aida, Chicago, H2$, Dutchman, The Drowsy Chaperone, Art, Die Fledermaus, Ragtime, Threepenny Opera, Phantom of the Opera, On the Twentieth Century, and Little Shop of Horrors. His choreography was recently seen this fall in Crowded Fire Theatre Company’s recent production of Young Jean Lee’s Church. His musical (Book/Lyrics) The Last Blues of the Empress will have a staged reading in New York City in 2019. He received his BA in Dance & Performance from UMass Amherst and his MFA in Theatre/Dramatic Literature from Smith College. He holds a Gold Medal in Ice Dancing from the USFS. He’s a member of the Society of Directors & Choreographers, The Writers Guild of America, Actors Equity Association, and the Musical Theatre Educators Alliance. This is his first production with African-American Shakespeare Company (AASC). Thank you AASC for this great honor!! For more information please check out www.mallandavis.com.
Stage Manager & Sound Designer — Maile M. Wong
Maile M. Wong is a graduate of San Francisco State University with a degree in both Dance and Theatre Arts. She is excited and delighted to be working with the African-American Shakespeare Company in her first production with the company as stage manager and sound designer. Previous stage-managed productions include: The Drowsy Chaperone and Into the Woods at Skyline College. Maile would like to sincerely thank her family and friends for their support while pursuing her passion and special thanks to Mark A. Davis and the African-American Shakespeare Company for this wonderful opportunity.
Costume Designer — Nikki Anderson-Joy
Nikki Anderson-Joy is a costume designer based in Oakland. Her recent designs include, TheatreFirst’s The People’s History of Next and Between Us, New Conservatory Theatre Center‘s The Mystery of Love & Sex, and Anton’s Well Theater Company’s This Wide Night. She has had the great opportunity to work with the African-American Shakespeare Company on their productions of For Colored Girls… (2018), Cinderella (2017), and Jitney (Theatre Bay Area Awards Finalist for Best Costume Design). Nikki also works at the San Francisco Opera Costume Shop as a costume assistant. Her upcoming work will be with Island City Opera’s Little Women and Campo Santo’s Candlestick in the winter of 2019. www.nikkiandersonjoy.com
Rehearsal Accompanist — Jason Oestenstad
Musical Director — Angel Burgess
Musical Arrangement — Robert Michael Moreno
Musical Track — Taylor Peckham
Production Manager — Leontyne Mbele-Mbong
Leontyne Mbele-Mbong is in her second season with the African-American Shakespeare Company as Production Manager. She is the founder of CogentOAK, a virtual admin business that provides administrative assistance. Prior to starting her own business, Leontyne worked for 10 years at an engineering consultant firm, working her way from temporary receptionist to business development coordinator. The customer service skills she learned in her first job as travel agent fresh out of college, she now puts to use at the American Conservatory Theater box office, and at various theaters across the city where she can be seen working front of house. The over-arching theme of this patchwork is assisting people with just what they need to do what they desire hassle-free—be it seeing a show or working on the aspect of the budding business they love. She even creates websites! Check hers out at www.cogentoak.com
Technical Director & Lighting Designer — Kevin Myrick
This is Kevin Myrick’s 17th season working with the African-American Shakespeare Company as the company’s resident Technical Director and Lighting Designer, sometimes switching to sets, sound, or projections. He studied technical theatre at San Francisco State University, and later earned degrees and worked in Computer Science and Technology. Since 1974 Kevin has worked as a designer, technical director or theatre tech for many artists and arts organizations including civic organizations like the San Francisco Arts Commission, the San Francisco Neighborhood Arts Program, and the Atlanta Bureau of Cultural Affairs; theatre companies like San Francisco’s Lorraine Hansberry Theatre Company, AfroSolo, Cultural Odyssey, Oakland Ensemble Theatre Company, Atlanta Children’s Theatre Company, Alliance Theatre Company, Just Us Theatre Company; and dance companies like the Wajumbe Cultural Ensemble, Dimensions Dance Theatre Company, and the Village Dancers. Kevin has also produced and designed for local cable television in metro Atlanta and San Francisco.
Assistant Stage Manager & Costume Assistant — Ammy Joseph
Ammy Joseph is a San Francisco native with a Bachelors degree in Drama from San Francisco State University. She was bit by the theatre beast in elementary, infected through high school and transformed by joining the hip-hop, poetry, theatre group Colored Ink shortly after completing BRAVA Theatre’s Running Crew program. Ammy’s commitments extend beyond the stage to inclusion (in general) and advocacy for people with disabilities. She often emcees the annual California Youth Leadership Forum where she enjoys engaging the audience and bonding with her younger differently-abled community. She is currently working on a comedy act. Some of her credits include: hosting City College of San Francisco’s IDTV, Jive, Blind Man’s Bluff, The Children’s Hour and numerous original plays written and produced by Colored Ink. She is delighted to finally be working with AASC.
Cinderella 2017 photo credit: Alison Whismore