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PhD candidates and close friends Sanam and Ariel have spent the better part of the last decade exhaustively researching vanishing bee populations. Just as they are about to publish a career-defining paper, Sanam stumbles upon a flaw in their data and is faced with an impossible choice. A play about personal integrity, relationships, and yes, bees.

SETTING: Santa Cruz, California. 2016.

Summit's production is directed by Artistic Manager Kelsey Leigh Miller.

FEB 9-10:  7:30 PM      FEB 11:  2:00 PM

FEB 15-17:  7:30 PM      FEB 18:  2:00 PM

FEB 22-24:  7:30 PM      FEB 25:  2:00 PM

FRANK & KATRINA BASILE THEATRE

PHOENIX THEATRE CULTURAL CENTRE

705 N ILLINOIS ST, 46204

NOTE: “Queen” is presented by arrangement with Concord Theatricals on behalf of Samuel French, Inc. concordtheatricals.com.

The show will run approximately 120 minutes with one intermission.

"Queen" premiered at Victory Gardens in Chicago, Illinois in 2017 under the direction of Joanie Schultz.

CAST

Sanam

Isha Narayanan*

Arial

Chynna Fry

Philip

Ryan Artzberger*

 

Arvind

Nayan Patadia

*Appearing through an Agreement between Summit Performance Indianapolis and Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.

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Isha Narayanan (she/her) (Sanam) is a performer and educator based in NYC/NJ and is stoked to be making her Summit Performance Indianapolis debut in Queen! Select recent credits include The Fantasticks (Matt (The Boy)) at The Depot Theatre, Sati: Goddess Incarnate (Ensemble) at 54 Below, Six Degrees of Separation (Detective) at NYU Tisch Drama: New Studio on Broadway and Offstage (Performer/Myself) at Tisch New Theatre. Isha would like to thank the wonderful cast, crew and team of Queen for their amazing work. She would also like to thank her parents - Sean and Yamini -  and her brother Kharan for their endless support. BFA from NYU Tisch Drama. Instagram: @isha.narayanan  |  ishanarayanan.com

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Chynna Fry (Arial) is thrilled to be back with Summit Performance Indianapolis. She previously appeared in Summit's production of The Convent, along with One Man, Two Guvnors at the Phoenix Theatre, and A Midsummer Night's Dream with Bard Fest. She is happy to be back in Indianapolis after several years working as an actor in Los Angeles, where she performed with her improv team at the Upright Citizen's Brigade theatre. Chynna received her B.A. from Purdue University.

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Ryan Artzberger (Philip) is delighted to be making his Summit (and PTCC) debut with this production. He did 2 plays at the old Phoenix, How to Use a Knife, and Reasons to Be Pretty. He has worked extensively at the I.R.T. (close to 60 productions), and at theaters across the country, including the Lookingglass, the Goodman, Berkeley Rep, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, KC Rep, the Studio Theatre, and the Shakespeare Theatre Company, D.C. Ryan is the executive artistic director of Indy Shakes, where he has performed in 8 plays, directed 2, and produced 6. Ryan thanks his wife Marita, son Will, and daughter Clara, for their love and support.

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Nayan Patadia (Arvind) is ecstatic to be making his professional theatre debut doing QUEEN! Nayan has appeared regionally in multiple commercials and print campaigns for popular companies such as Grubhub, Aspen Dental, Hewlett Packard and Nationwide Insurance to name a few. A seasoned sketch comedian and dad joke enthusiast, Nayan has written and produced award-winning comedic shorts featured in the Chicago South Asian Film Festival. Nayan has trained at Second City and Acting Studio Chicago, and has performed at Annoyance theater and other Chicago comedy venues. A dedicated yogi and meditator, Nayan believes that "all that truly matters in life is profoundness of experience and impact of activity.” He would like to thank his wonderful and supportive family and friends, with a special thanks to his agents at Stewart Talent agency for supporting his acting journey. Instagram: nayan.patadia

DIRECTOR'S NOTE

Sustainability is complicated. That might be the understatement of the year. Madhuri Shekar talks about how this script came out of her desire to write about true friendship between women. She was inspired by close friendships she had and witnessed between women pursuing graduate degrees in STEM fields. This play gives us a beautifully nuanced portrait of female friendship, yes. And I think it goes even further. This portrait of female friendship models a radical shift, a non-linear shift, in the way we pursue our ambitions and grow our community. 

 

Each of the characters in this play is susceptible to a particular kind of near-sightedness. Tunnel vision that comes from a singular goal – professional, social, personal – can very easily blind us to the bigger picture, the bigger picture of our relationships, our community, or our world. Sanam and Ariel begin this play believing they have found a simple and specific solution to colony collapse disorder (CCD, or why the bees are disappearing), but of course, things are never as simple as they seem. And the environmental crises of our planet cannot be solved by a singular fix. To me, this play asks the characters and the audience to look at the bigger picture, the broader perspective. Not only to decide “what matters to you?”, but also to recognize how interconnected we all are. 

 

Do we choose to ignore the bigger picture and the societal context in favor of our own individual needs and ambitions? Or do we choose to live in an open-minded community? To be sensitive, responsive, and responsible to the lives and needs of those impacted not only by our individual choices but also by the status quo - the existing systems built by those in power. 

 

The earth cannot be saved by one heroic group, one big change, one clear solution. But rather it may only be saved by a collective shift to prioritize our community, our future, and our collective hive. 

 

Kelsey Leigh Miller (Director)

DESIGN TEAM

Director

Kelsey Leigh Miller

Stage Manager

Becky Roeber*

 

Assistant Stage Manager

Abigail Wittenmyer

Set Design

MeJah Balams

 

Costume Design

Finnegan Chu

Lighting Design

Michael Moffatt

Sound Design

Ben Dobler

 

Prop Design

Molly Dykstra

 

Intimacy Direction

Claire Wilcher

Kelsey Leigh Miller (she/her) {Director} is an Indianapolis theatre artist originally from Washington state. She received her BA in Theatre Arts and later studied the Meisner acting technique. Kelsey works as an actor, educator, and director. She is also the Artistic Manager with Summit Performance Indianapolis. With Queen, Kelsey makes her professional directing debut. She has previously directed a Summit staged reading (The Convent) as well as The Last Days of Judas Iscariot at the University of Indianapolis. Notable acting credits include Pilgrims (Storefront Theatre), Hamlet (Indy Shakes), and The Christians (Phoenix Theatre). Warm thank yous to Adam (obviously) and Nora, and this incredible team. And thank YOU for attending live theatre and for supporting the Art of Empathy. 

 

Becky Roeber* (Stage Manager) is so excited to be a part of the Summit Team for the first time! They are originally from the Pocono Mountains, Pennsylvania but have been an Indy local for 6 years now. They serve as ASM and Production Coordinator at Indiana Repertory Theatre and Production Manager for Summer Stock Stage. They would like to thank Summit for the opportunity to work on this beautiful production and they would like to thank their family and friends for always supporting the work they do. 

 

Abigail Wittenmyer (Assistant Stage Manager) is a graduating senior at the University of Indianapolis where she is earning her BA in Theatre, with concentrations in stage management and performance, and also a double minor in Communication and Political Communication. Some notable stage management experiences are Ricky 3: A Hip Hop Shakespeare Richard III (Indy Shakes), Too Much Light Makes The Baby Go Blind (Indy & St. Louis Fringe), and her latest work The Importance of Being Earnest (UIndy Theatre CO). This is her first production with Summit Performance Indianapolis and is honored to join the incredibly talented cast and crew as assistant stage manager. Abigail wants to extend her gratitude to Kelsey Miller for the opportunity, Becky Roeber for their guidance, and Christian McKinney who always bets on me.

 

MeJah Balams (Set Designer) is a multi-disciplined visual artist and designer residing in Atlanta, GA. She received her BFA in Theatre Design and Technology from Auburn University and received scenic art training from the reputable Cobalt Studios. Her most recent projects include Scenic Design for Fences, Freedom: the Journey of Robert Smalls, and Twelfth Night. Other projects include Lighting Designer for Blue Hour, a lighting installation for Prague Quadrennial and Props Designer for East Texas Hot Links

Finnegan Chu (she/they) (Costume Designer) is a Chicago-based costume designer and theatre artist. Lead design credits include Seagulls (Oak Park Festival), Right to Be Forgotten (Raven Theatre), and Galileo’s Daughter (Remy Bumppo). Other credits include associate design on The Lehman Trilogy (Timeline) and The Chinese Lady (Timeline), assistant design on A Christmas Story (Marriott Theatre), and stage management/wardrobe supervision on Homecoming (Albany Park Theater Project). Finnegan is currently the wardrobe supervisor (2nd ASM) at Port of Entry, an immersive theatrical show produced by Albany Park Theatre Project. Finnegan believes in pay equity and transparency to costume artists and all theatre artists, as well as advocating for a more intersectional approach to storytelling in the interest of the betterment of the theatre communities around them. Instagram: @finneganchu.design |  finneganchudesign.com 

 

Michael Moffatt (Lighting Designer) is doing what he loves to do, live theatre! Michael's local design credits include Summer Stock Stage '08-present, Eclipse, Phoenix Theatre, Zach and Zack Productions, Q Artistry, Butler, Marian and UIndy Theatre departments, and Anderson University Lyric Opera department. Michael teaches technical theatre full-time at Cathedral High School where has designed lights and sets since 2002.

 

Ben Dobler (he/him) (Sound Designer) is an Indianapolis-based designer and technician specializing in sound, video, and lighting. His work has been featured at the Phoenix Theatre (ProZack The Sad Elf; Holly Fudge; A Very Phoenix Xmas; Alabaster; The Christians; Indecent; Sweat; Fun Home; Hand to God; Next to Normal), Constellation Stage & Screen (Anne of Green Gables), Cardinal Stage (The Mountaintop), Fonseca Theatre (Boo-La-La 1 & 2; TJ Loves Sally 4 Ever; Dream House; Tiger Style; Fade; 26 Miles), Actors Theatre of Indiana (Cabaret; Million Dollar Quartet; Sweeney Todd), and Summer Stock Stage (Urinetown; Dogfight; Spring Awakening; Pippin), among others.

 

Molly Dykstra (Props Designer) is Company Manager for a local theatre. She is very excited to be in her second year designing props for Summit Performance Indianapolis. Her most recent credits include props for 1980 (or Why I Voted for John Anderson), Skeleton Crew, and The Convent. Molly has also designed and built the sets for Post Democracy, Blackhat Duncan, So You’re Soulless, Well I’ll be Damned, and Boxcar Kids. An artist at heart, she has worked on a variety of films, public art projects and held multiple exhibitions of her paintings and multimedia work. Some of this work can be seen at mollydykstra.com. She wants to thank her wife, Natalie, and their children, Sydney and Ash, for their encouragement and support. It allows Molly’s artistry to flourish and her soul to sing.

Claire Wilcher (Intimacy Direction) is happy to be back home in Indianapolis after earning her Master of Fine Arts in Theatre from Michigan State University in 2021, where she specialized in acting, pedagogy, and intimacy direction. Claire is a certified intimacy director/choreographer with IDC Professionals, where she also works as a teaching artist alongside the industry’s leading educators and practitioners, advocating for consent-based theatre spaces, bodily autonomy for actors, and safe-yet-creative storytelling. Her intimacy choreography has been seen on the stages of the IRT, Phoenix Cultural Center, Summit Performance, Marian University, Williamston Theatre in Michigan, Three Brothers Theatre in Waukegan, and Redtwist Theatre in Chicago, among others. More at clairewilcher.com.

CREW & PRODUCTION TEAM

Production Manager

Christian McKinney

Assistant Costume/Wardrobe

Rebecca Reyes

Set Construction

Sapphire Theatre Co.

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SPECIAL THANKS

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