Meet the cast of V&S&M&S

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PAUL ARAQUISTAIN (Vanya) was last seen at CCCT as Alvin Kelby in The Story of My Life (2010). More recently, he marked his fourth production of Cabaret (2017), playing Herr Schultz at Hillbarn Theatre. He has worked with many Bay Area theatres, including Altarena Playhouse (Alan, God of Carnage), Broadway By the Bay (The Baker, Into the Woods; Lefou, Beauty & the Beast; the Engineer, Miss Saigon, for which he won a Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award), New Conservatory Theatre Center (originated the role of John Giraud in the world premiere of Terrence McNally’s CRUCIFIXION), Foothill Music Theatre (Tateh, Ragtime, for which he won a Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award; Lee Harvey Oswald, Assassins), as well as TheatreWorks, Bus Barn Stage Company, and Palo Alto Players. In recent years, he’s also enjoyed performing at Society Cabaret in San Francisco.

 

LAURIE STRAWN (Sonia) is happy to return to CCCT! Audiences may remember Laurie as Nat in Rabbit Hole and Mrs. Meers in Thoroughly Modern Millie. Other Bay Area credits include: Dorothy Brock in 42nd Street with Bay Area Musicals, Jean Louise Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird at Berkeley Playhouse, Betty Meeks in The Foreigner at Hillbarn Theatre, White Christmas (Martha), The Drowsy Chaperone (Mrs. Tottendale), Annie (Miss Hannigan), and On The Town (Madame Dilly), at Diablo Theatre Company. Other favorites include Noises Off (Belinda), Picasso at the Lapine Agile (Germaine), and Picnic (Flo), all at Sierra Repertory Theatre. Laurie created and performs Brave Little Nell-the Eleanor Roosevelt Story in venues throughout Northern California.

 

DONNA TURNER (Masha) is thrilled to return to Contra Costa Civic Theatre after so many years, where she played in Singing in the Rain (Lena Lamont); Anything Goes (Bonnie); and Guys and Dolls (Adelaide). Recent work includes The Wedding Singer for BAM (Rosie); the critically acclaimed The Light in the Piazza (Margaret); Blood Brothers (Mrs. Johnstone); Gypsy (Momma Rose); Man of La Mancha (Aldonza); and Urinetown (Pennywise) for Altarena Playhouse where she also directed The Taffetas. Donna received Shellie nominations for City of Angels (Mallory); Me and My Girl (Lady Jacqueline); and Sweeney Todd (Beggar Woman) for Diablo Light Opera Company; and for The Women (Mary Haines) for Town Hall Theatre. Donna won the Shellie Award for Kindertransport (Helga) for Moraga Playhouse. Other favorites include: Mack and Mabel (Mabel); Sweet Charity (Charity) and Chicago (Roxy). Donna is a Black Belt Martial Artist and earned her Theatre Degree from San Francisco State University.

 

LUCAS BRANDT (Spike) is thrilled to be making his CCCT debut. Recent credits include Tom in Beneath the Tall Tree (TheatreFirst), Malvolio in Twelfth Night (SF Shakespeare Festival) and Benny Southstreet in Guys and Dolls (Jewel Theatre). A Bay Area local, Lucas has also had the pleasure of working with California Shakespeare Theater, Santa Cruz Shakespeare, Boxcar Theatre, and Shotgun Players, among others.

 

 

VESSELINA IVANOVA (Nina) is proud to appear in her very first production at Contra Costa Civic Theatre. Previously, Vessy has performed at Castro Valley Center for the Arts, where her favorite roles include Cherie in William Inge’s Bus Stop, Queen Constantina in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella, and Gabriela Montez in Disney’s High School Musical. As a graduate of California College of the Arts, she is a fine artist and animator who crafts believable performances that breathe life into digital characters.

 

ELIZABETH JONES (Cassandra) is a graduate of Howard University’s College of Fine Arts Theatre Program with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree. Elizabeth is excited to be making her debut at CCCT! Some theatre credits include: Dance Of The Holy Ghosts (Ubuntu Theater Project), Deloris Van Cartier in Sister Act! (Berkeley Playhouse), Little Shop of Horrors (Contra Costa Musical Theatre), Hairspray (Mountain Play Association), and All Shook Up (Tri Valley Repertory Theatre).

 

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