Tag Archives: Drama


Confession, a short subject shot in March, has recently been released online and is slated to be shown this Thursday at the 11th Annual North Lake Video Fest.  Written by Chris Fisher and directed by Tony Lam, Confession stars Joy Ingram and Greg Vestal.  Oh, and me, too. 

Here it is for your viewing pleasure.  Enjoy! 

Vodpod videos no longer available.  

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Brad Wins Column Award!

I really believed it an anomaly I was even nominated. After all, for a role in which I spent only twenty consecutive minutes onstage in the middle of a three-act play last June, I was amazed anyone had even remembered me, much less considered me for a Column Award. So when my fellow Brigadoon cast-mate Stan Graner announced that I had won Best Supporting Actor in a Play (non-equity), I was truly stunned.

We packed the Carpenter Theater at the Irving Arts Center last night.  Most of the Dallas/Fort Worth theater community had come to enjoy the 11th Annual Column Awards honoring excellence in theater throughout the metroplex. The place was oozing talent.  Broadway leading man Ron Bohmer co-hosted the event; reunited casts performed musical numbers of outstanding quality from nominated productions; and the presenters kept the event moving at a brisk pace while performing improvised comedy bits that put the audience in stitches. To share a nomination with anyone in this crowd – indeed, just to be invited as a presenter – was more of an honor than I had imagined.

But to win – to become, in an instant, a Column Award-winning actor – leaves me speechless and humbled. My thanks to the following:

  • Arthur Miller – for All My Sons, a truly classic drama of the American theater.
  • John Garcia and everyone at The Column – your organization is a blessing of immeasurable value to all of us. No words of gratitude could ever come close to expressing how we feel.
  • ICT MainStage
  • Marco Salinas – for casting me as George Deever and guiding me through rehearsal.
  • Tom Ortiz – Column Award-winning Stage Manager for his work in All My Sons.
  • The superb cast of ICT’s All My Sons: Paul Arnold, Lyzz Broskey, Catherine DuBord (the most wonderful fictional sibling a guy could have), Diana Gonzalez (who belts The Beatles’ “Come Together” like nobody’s business), Michael McNiel, Fred Patchen, Drew Smith, Diane Truitt, and Jordan Willis (whose commitment and support of live theater awes me).
  • Terry Martin, Donald Fowler and all my WaterTower Meisner classmates.
  • My ever-supportive mother; Brian and Sandy, my true-life siblings; Nathan and Donovan, my ruggedly adorable nephews; and Dad, whose presence is always felt.
  • Arlette, my beautiful and brilliant wife whose talent vastly overshadows mine.
  • And, most importantly, God, who makes all things possible.

Congratulations to all the nominees and winners. Thank you for allowing me to be part of this amazing community of talent.

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A Column Award Nomination!

Nominations for this year’s Column Awards were announced last night and I was surprised to hear I had received one for Best Supporting Actor in a Play (non-equity).  I was nominated for my performance as George Deever in ICT MainStage’s production of All My Sons last May.

I am humbled to be in the company of so much fine talent.  Thank you to Marco Salinas for his informed direction and the incredible cast with whom I was privileged to work.

The Column Awards annually honors excellence in theatre productions throughout the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Additionally, The Column Awards strives to raise funds for the fight against AIDS by primarily contributing to Broadway Cares / Equity Fights AIDS. Finally, The Column Awards is dedicated to developing a love of theatre in our local youth.

Winners will be announced at the 11th Annual Column Awards Gala to be held March 8, 2010 at the Irving Arts Center.  Click here for a complete list of nominees.

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Mesquite Community Theatre held their annual  awards banquet Saturday night and presented two awards to cast members of their 2009 production of To Gillian On Her 37th Birthday.  Written by Michael Brady and directed by Brad Stephens, the critically-acclaimed production ran in April of last year and garnered multiple nominations.

Larry Jack Dotson took home the coveted People’s Choice Award.  Dotson won the hearts of audiences with his sincere performance as Paul, a seemingly brow-beaten husband who carefully chooses when to assert himself.  Arlette Morgan took home the Best Featured Actress trophy for her multi-layered portrayal of the title character.

Congratulations go out to them and all the winners of this year’s banquet.

  • LEAD ACTRESS: Jan Summar, Belles
  • LEAD ACTOR: Steve Iwanski, The Dining Room
  • SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Ashley Curts, Belles
  • SUPPORTING ACTOR: Steve Iwanski, The Butler Did It
  • FEATURED ACTRESS: Arlette Morgan, To Gillian On Her 37th Birthday
  • BEST SHOW: Belles
  • BEST DIRECTOR: Lois Sheeler, Belles
  • BEST ASSISTANT DIRECTOR: Scott Croy, The Dining Room
  • BEST SET DESIGN: Tina Pisanelle, Belles
  • BEST COSTUME DESIGN: Emily Hunt, The Butler Did It
  • BEST LIGHT DESIGN: Scott Croy, Belles
  • PEOPLE’S CHOICE — Don’t Dress For Dinner: Alex Wade
  • PEOPLE’S CHOICE — To Gillian On Her 37th Birthday: Larry Jack Dotson
  • PEOPLE’S CHOICE — The Dining Room: Cory Timmons and Aaron McDavis
  • PEOPLE’S CHOICE — Belles: Shannon Souddress
  • PEOPLE’S CHOICE — The Butler Did It: Rachel Hall

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GILLIAN Gains MCT Nominations

Mesquite Community Theatre has honored my production of To Gillian On Her 37th Birthday with numerous nominations for their upcoming awards banquet celebrating their 2009 season.  I had the pleasure of directing the Michael Brady play last April with an awesome cast and crew.  The nominations are:

  • Brad Stephens  —  Director
  • Rebekah Kennedy, Rachel  — Lead Actress
  • Larry Jack Dotson, Paul    Supporting Actor
  • Lacy Lambert, Esther    Supporting Actress
  • Jenny George, Kevin   Featured Actress
  • Ragen Jansky, Cindy  —  Featured Actress
  • Arlette Morgan, Gillian  —  Featured Actress
  • Winston Hammonds — Assistant Director
  • Scott Croy — Light Design
  • Brad Stephens  —  Set Design

My congratulations and thanks go out to everyone involved with Gillian as well as everyone associated with MCT’s very successful silver anniversary season.  Also, my gratitude to Art Director, David Jetre, who was instrumental in dressing our set.

Mesquite Community Theatre’s Awards Banquet will be held Saturday, January 23, 2010.

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12 ANGRY MEN: The Column Review

The ColumnThere’s enough anger for twelve men, with plenty of emotion to spare, in a steamy 1950s jury deliberation drama presented in the Castle Ballroom of the Sterling Hotel in Dallas. This famous relic from half a century ago, 12 Angry Men, is the debut presentation of Poor Man Productions, and the venue offers dinner, bar, and theater in the round.

The set is simple — a conference table, twelve chairs, water pitcher, and a window. The cast of twelve is anything but simple. Although uncolored by gender or racial diversity, this group of men represent a wide range of types, each skillfully written and portrayed with just a few words of dialogue. This is the kind of writing that gave us the Golden Era of television in the 1950s in which meaningful themes were explored and memorable characters created in surprisingly limited time and space.

Director Joey Folsom stays true to the roots of this classic, and in this small, stuffy room filled with angry men, we are transported back in time with their mannerisms, dialects, everyday business suits with 1950s accessories, fedoras, and Clark Kent glasses.

I remember a director once gave this advice to the cast of a very cheesy Christmas story: “If you commit to the cheese, this will be fantastic.” I don’t think “cheesy” is the right word for this play, but “hokey” definitely fits at times, and the director and cast all committed thoroughly to the hokey-ness, with impressive results. Despite its clunky, predictable moments and soupy melodrama, the story is engaging and remarkably relevant to audiences today. The characters are all boiled down to their type element somehow without coming across as stereotypes. They retain their humanity in the way they interact with one another, whether shouting in anger or chatting aimlessly.

The beleaguered young jury foreman, played by company co-founder Nathan Autrey, wrestles with the frustrating task of directing deliberations toward a final verdict. Harry Listen is the senior citizen who touchingly expresses the loneliness and loss of esteem that might motivate another to give false testimony. The juror played by Francis “Hank” Henry is the icon of success in his impeccable suit and unflustered manner. Bryce Sharp grapples with class-ism as the only member of the jury who relates to the defendant’s tenement upbringing in the violent urban ghetto. Adrian Godinez is the European immigrant who pushes the patriotic buttons of the others with his soft-spoken good manners and his clear thinking and refuses to be provoked into defending his right to be there.

Brad Stephens as Juror 7 is unruffled and sophisticated. He turns his vote without the drama most of the others require. Brad Smeaton gives a delicious performance as the obnoxious bigot whose impassioned pleas disgusts the others and turns them away rather than rallying them to his racist philosophy. He does something very macho and interesting with his eyes when offering an unspoken challenge to one of the other men, something I find funny and kind of scary at the same time. It’s kind of a chilling “You want a piece of me?” smirk with the eyebrows raised, and Smeaton delivers it masterfully.

Advertising executive Juror 12, played by Andrew Maggs, gets laughs with his “throw it on the stoop” line among others, but it is the timid Juror 2, Alex Worthington, who delivers the most memorable comedic moments with his cough drop and the second hand on his wristwatch.

The point of the story is not the verdict but the deliberation that leads ultimately to a showdown between jurors Number 3 and Number 8. Juror 8 is a thoughtful, patient man, who resists the tide of reactionary instinct that almost carries the jury to an automatic conviction without deliberation. Andrew Kasten expertly portrays this man’s quiet control, his persistent and persuasive logic, and his unflinching courage to stand alone to face a roomful of angry men. He knows when to quietly allow his ideas to settle into the room to be digested and considered by the other men and when to raise his finger and his voice to call a man out for what he is.

His antagonist, Juror 3, played by Terry Yates, only gradually emerges as the unbalanced personality who refuses to yield to the simple logic of “reasonable doubt.” Yates does a nice job of bringing this character down a path — starting out as a willing though reluctant participant in the deliberations and offering reasonable support for his “guilty” vote. He even offers an apology for losing his temper and makes a noticeable attempt to maintain control of his emotions and to use calm logic and rational discussion to support his position.

As he loses supporters one by one and finds himself standing alone in opposition to “reasonable doubt,” his control breaks, and his passionate speech can be felt in the gut. “Geez, I can feel the knife going in my heart!” he cries, describing the pain a father feels when his son has turned on him, whether he deserved it or not. 

Folsom keeps the story moving forward at an energetic pace with carefully considered movements and well-delivered dialogue. Though the air conditioning in the Castle Ballroom was on full blast, I felt the heat of that tiny jury room and the suffocation of the men when they made for the window in a futile gesture of escape.

— by Gina Robertson of John Garcia’s The Column


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ANGRY MEN Debuts Over Dallas

Dallas_Skyline1eAfter a very successful preview performance, the cast of Poor Man Production’s TWELVE ANGRY MEN returns to the Sterling Hotel Dallas tonight to open our highly anticipated run, playing atop the hotel in the Castleview Ballroom overlooking the Dallas skyline.  Written by Reginald Rose, this theater classic is directed by Joey Folsom and produced by David Moore.  Yours truly is portraying Juror #7.

Set in 1956 on one of the hottest days on record, the drama unfolds as twelve strangers from divergent backgrounds gather together to decide the fate of a young man accused of murder.  Most are convinced of the accused’s guilt but one lone voice stands opposed citing reasonable doubt.  As the deliberation wears on, tensions mount as ignorance, arrogance and prejudice fuel the heated debate while a man’s life hangs in the balance.

Running through 30 August 2009, a buffet dinner will be served prior to every performance.  Dinner is included with the ticket price and a cash bar will be available.  Doors open at 6:00 PM.  Buffet opens at 6:30 PM with the show beginning at 8:00 PM.  Tickets are $25.00 per person and available for purchase online.  Please visit www.pmptexas.com to purchase tickets online.

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TWELVE ANGRY MEN To Open August 14

Rehearsals began last week for Poor Man Production’s Twelve Angry Men, written by Reginald Rose and directed by Joey Folsom.  Scheduled to open on 14 August 2009, the show will be performed in the Castleview Ballroom high atop the Sterling Hotel Dallas.  Brad Stephens has been cast in the role of Juror #7.

Studio_One_Twelve_Angry_MenTwelve Angry Men is a play adapted from Rose’s 1954 teleplay for the CBS Studio One anthology television series.  Initially staged as a live production on 20 September 1954, the episode garnered three Emmy Awards.  The drama was later rewritten for the stage in 1955 under the same title and again for a feature film, 12 Angry Men (1957).  The play’s Broadway debut came fifty years later on 28 October 2004 at the Roundabout Theatre, where it ran for 328 performances.

This production will run for nine performances through 30 August 2009.  Tickets are currently $25.00 per person and available for purchase online.  After August 10, the ticket price goes to $35.00 when purchased online and $45.00 at the door.  A buffet dinner will be served prior to all performances.  Dinner is included with the ticket price and a cash bar will be available.  Doors open at 6:00 PM.  Buffet opens at 6:30 PM with the show beginning at 8:00 PM.  Please visit www.pmptexas.com to purchase tickets online.

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Taking the Lead in IMPACT

Production of the indie short film Impact began bright and early this morning. Very early. As in 5:30 AM early. So, really, it wasn’t even all that bright yet.

Written and directed by local filmmaker Robert Montoya, Impact is set in a not to distant future where the First Amendment has been abolished due to a third attack on American soil by fundamentalist Islamic terrorists. With freedom of speech and religion revoked, a Christian finds himself fleeing government persecution of his faith. However, his flight is hindered when he stumbles upon a street prostitute in desperate need of help. A cautionary tale of what happens when fear arrests liberty, Impact is ultimately a tale of love and faith triumphing over despair.

Scheduled for a four-day shoot in multiple locations all over the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, I have been cast in the lead role. I will be making Twitter updates as we go along so feel free to follow our progress!

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ICT MainStage concluded its critically acclaimed run of All My Sons last night in the Dupree Theater at the Irving Arts Center.  As an actor, few plays hold for me as much dramatic impact as does this Arthur Miller classic.  This was my second time in less than a year to be instrumental in re-introducing this American classic to the public consciousness and I have enjoyed every minute of it.

The success of a play, especially one’s first success, is somewhat like pushing against a door which is suddenly opened from the other side. One may fall on one’s face or not, but certainly a new room is opened that was always securely shut until then. For myself, the experience was invigorating. It made it possible to dream of daring more and risking more. The audience sat in silence before the unwinding of All My Sons and gasped when they should have, and I tasted that power which is reserved, I imagine, for playwrights, which is to know that by one’s invention a mass of strangers has been publicly transfixed.  — Arthur Miller

I am grateful to ICT for giving me the opportunity to explore the character of George over the last six weeks of rehearsals and performances.  To our director, Marco Salinas, I extend heartfelt thanks for knowing exactly when to pull me back and when to drop the reins and allow me to run free.  To the cast — Micheal, Diane, Catherine, Jordan, Diana, Fred, Paul and Drew — I offer my deepest appreciation for your talent, commitment and devotion; it was a pleasure sharing the stage with you.  And for those of you who saw the play, thank you for allowing us to share a bit of our lives with you.  We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did bringing it to life.

In the closing of Miller’s play, Chris tells us “there’s a whole universe of people outside and you’re responsible to it.”  He calls us to recognize something bigger than ourselves, our families, our countries.  While I’m not sure Miller and I would have agreed on everything, I do agree there is a something beyond our ability to fully comprehend or appreciate, a loving Entity to whom we are ultimately responsible.  To Him, I reserve my deepest gratitude for this experience, all the others past and those yet to come.

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