Creator of Zanzibar Fairtytale Puppet Theater
Mr. Dawson's passion and fascination with puppets began at a very early age, with great inspiration from Children's Fairyland Puppet Theater. His versatility and imagination has contributed to hundreds of theatrical productions from New York to Las Vegas, as well as in the San Francisco bay area. Mr. Dawson has worked as a Stage and Production Manager, Lighting and Costume Designer. Some highlights include lighting and costume design for productions of La Cage Aux follies, Pageant, Sweet Charity, 'Twas the Night before Christmas, The Headdress Ball, Pippin and the off- Broadway production of Halfway There.
In the world of visual arts / window design/display, Mr. Dawson's rich past includes time invested with Henri Bendel and Barrango. Recent project highlights have included lighting design for Macy's 60th annual flower show and the 2006 Saks fifth Avenue holiday windows. As an Event Designer and Producer, Theodore has worked in the finest hotels in the Bay Area, New York and Las Vegas. Theodore has also worked his magic in his local community in the city of Oakland, having designed and brought to life three very special projects for Children's Fairyland Fairywoods, Merlin's Magical Caverns, and Pirate Pete's Search for the Ruby Amulet.
Puppet head design and sculptor
Michael's professional career began in NYC, with the renowned Bil Baird Marionette Theatre. His off-Broadway credits include: Alice In Wonderland, Peter and the Wolf, Pinocchio, and The Cartonella Show. Working at Radio City Music Hall he went on to design and create puppets, millinery and costuming FX's on six consecutive productions including: Walt Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, The Christmas Spectacular and Manhattan Showboat. His work in New York City also included two Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parades.
Hired by the Sid and Marty Krofft, and NBC Studios, in Los Angeles, CA he designed for a number of Film and Television Variety Shows and Specials including: Bob Hope's Christmas Special, Johnny Carson's Tonight Show, Pryor's Place, Punky Brewster, and Peewee's Playhouse.
Other design and prototype credits include a national tour of the Wizard of Oz, specialty costumes for "Splash" at the Riviera Hotel in Las Vegas, The Barbara Mandrell's Christmas Special, for CBS, Mattel Toys, and Pumbaa for the Lion King.
For more information about Michael, see his website.
Sound Design and Mastering
Bryan Wright is a music producer and owner of Gravity Sound, who provides recording, mixdown, and production services,live sound reinforcement systems and services, and audio production.
He's also the lead vocalist, guitar player, and songwriter for the explosive San Francisco-based rock band Trip Device www.myspace.com/tripdevice. Three of Bryan's songs were used as background tracks for the most-aired episode of MTV's "Making The Video" in network history, and Trip Device has opened for Kid Rock, Lit, King's X, and God Lives Underwater.
What's in Bryan's iPod: A wide selection of industrial, classical, jazz, metal, country, trance, ambient, down-tempo electronica, and alternative-rock.
Script co-author, Assistant to the Producer
Deborah Zippel saw a ballet at the age of four, and immediately fell in love with the performing arts. Since then she has stayed involved in any way possible; as a dancer, actor, videographer, writer, costumer, even as a security guard (Asolo Theater in Sarasota, Florida - it's a long story). She consults and designs databases for her day job.
Puppet Makeup Design
Todd Lovett is a bay area Surface/Textile designer and Watercolorist. Todd has a realistic yet contemporary style and though his subject matter is varied he often paints florals, animals and enjoys including architectural elements in his work. "Painting the faces of the characters couldn't be further from a still life yet the challenge is the same: to breathe life into what I'm painting. Painting the faces of the cast of Zanzibar allows me to convey their unique personalities".
Scenic Artist, Additional Scenic Design
Ever since seeing Bob Ross on The Joy of Painting as a young child, Annie Wong has been in love with the act of art-making. She grew up in San Antonio, Texas (where paint dries very quickly) and won several art contests and participated in a city-wide mural painting program for 3 years. In 2001 she escaped the heat of Texas to attend the California College of Arts and Crafts and received her Bachelor's degree as an Individualized Major in 2005. Since then she has shown in galleries and illustrated a children's book, The Adventures of Penny, The Rhode Island Red. Currently, she works both as a puppeteer and head of the Art and Restoration department of Children's Fairyland in Oakland. Annie's website www.headexplodie.com
Associate set designer and builder
Zanzibar Logo Design
Steven Lam has teamed up with Theo on the Cinderella project having worked together for several years at Macy's and Saks Fifth Avenue in San Francisco. He has developed an interest in display installations, through building numerous props and installations for the stores' display windows. He was also responsible for conceptualizing and creating Macy's SPCA famous holiday Christmas windows. He brings with him a graphic design degree that he earned at University of Hawai'i, in his hometown of Honolulu. Steven is currently keeping himself busy tattooing full time at Goldfields Tattoo Studio in the historic North Beach area of San Francisco.
Tim has been a performer for many years and toured through-out the world to Russia, Canada, Singapore, Brazil, Bulgaria, Japan and Idaho. He has worked for Tears of Joy Theatre, Oregon Puppet Theatre, and Canada’s Omle Productions. Tim earned an Emmy in puppetry for the 1993 pilot, "The Land of I" and was the puppeteer for the Baby Einstein series. He is presently on the Board of Directors of Darkroom Productions in Vallejo and the Artistic Director of Il Teatro Calamari. Check out darkroomproductions.org and teatrocalamari.com for more.
Eric J. Kos
Eric by day is a publisher, author and graphic designer. Co-Founder, Creative Director of the weekly Alameda Sun Newspaper; Board Member, Rhythmix Cultural Works, Alameda; Past President, Greater Alameda Business Association; Author, East Bay Then & Now, San Francisco in Photographs, San Francisco Then & Now (2009) and Los Angeles from the Air, Then & Now. For more on him, visit www.alamedasun.com, www.oaklandhistory.com or eastbaynowandthen.wordpress.com.
Victoria began her puppet life at the tender young age of 19, where by chance she fell into the pit of the Storybook Puppet Theater at Children's Fairyland in Oakland. There she apprenticed the many skills of puppetry under Master Puppeteer Randal Metz, as well as working with the original, well loved, and honored head puppeteer at Fairyland, Lewis Mahlmann. Victoria has worked on other puppet productions, including Oakland's fun and free neighborhood Halloween show, Driveway Follies, and is now enjoying working with Zanzibar Puppets. In her free time Victoria loves travelling, vast amounts of humor, animals, and multitudes of music and dance. She encourages everyone to plant a garden, adopt a dog, and ride a bike.
Amber is a bay area teaching artist and performer. She is currently producing "Doo-Wop-Ner, an improvised Small Claims Musical" for the San Francisco Improv Festival and looks forward to reprising her role as Sister Terrie in Tony and Tina's Wedding. Amber directs for Youth Theater Company in Walnut Creek and sings with Pacific Mozart Ensemble. She loves knitting, improv, puppetry, reading, and her cat, O'Malley.
Jesse is a creator and performer that has been living and breathing in the bay are for over three years now. Amongst her varying array of skills is puppeteering, an art form that is used to express ideas and create little stringy thingies. She is a set designer and mural artist, as well as a musician and seamstress. Basically Jesse Roadkill has managed to navigate through this ever changing city independently and content in not having a regular job. The constant challenge of being a young artist in the world has sharpened her senses of survival and made the art that is produced the very very best best it can be. Thank you world for making it so hard...
Carnida Doran has been enthusiastically active in theatre since the age of nine. Since then she has been in numerous productions, ranging from the avant garde, to musicals, to Shakespeare. Carnida is a 2007 graduate of Solano Community College's Actor Training Program and is currently studying at San Francisco State University. This is her first experience working with puppets and is thrilled to have been given the opportunity.
Jesse Vail (Lighting) is a professional puppeteer and artisan. His company "Fool Moon Puppetry Arts" has been delighting young and old alike for nearly two decades. He is very pleased to be part of Zanzibar's production of Cinderella.
Sara Norgeot is our newest member! She has recently relocated to the Bay Area from South Florida and is a member of the San Francisco Bay Area Puppeteers Guild. Sara brings to Zanzibar her spice of creativity and fresh ideas. If you asked Sara what she does, she will tell you a Puppet Fabricator but don't let her fool you. She does so much more than just that!
Will never risk being low-visibility on stage she's been a savvy seamstress in The Pajama Game and a tantalizing trombonist in Sugar. Along with stand out performances in Crazy For You, Oklahoma and The Most Happy Fella. When Therese is not pounding the boards this effervescent lady plays the role of Director of Customer development for Saks Fifth Avenue and is the proud mother of two grown children and one grandchild.
Susan is an artist by trade and works in acrylics, computer graphics and book design and currently is represented by the Edith Caldwell Gallery in Sausalito. Over the years she have performed in various musicals with favorite roles being Sugar in Sugar and Ado Annie in Oklahoma!. Susan was also in a woman's singing group for many years called the Doo Wah Divas which appeared all over the Bay Area.
Connie Colladay Hooker
Gladys / Fairy Godmother
Connie attended San Jose State University and graduated with a major in Speech Communication and a minor in Drama. She has worked for Bank of America for 34 years in San Francisco, New York and Los Angeles. The majority of her career was in Human Resources and for the past 8 years she has worked in the Bank's Global Corporate and Investment Bank as an Event Planning Manager. In her free time, Connie has acted in shows produced by Patti Warner for the Town School and California Historical Society including Hello Dolly, Most Happy Fella, Mame and Crazy For You. Additional dalliances into local theatre include her portrayal as Hilary Clinton singing "Stand by Your Man" for the Burlingame Country Club Variety show. In the Cinderella puppet show, Connie plays the role of Gladys, the Fairy Godmother. Connie is married to Michael Hooker and currently lives in San Francisco.
Cary has been a voice actor in the Bay Area for a number of years. When he's not busy voicing creepy monsters, violent cyborgs, and
grandmothers who just want a great haircut, he does technical support for a local web hosting company.
Chantal - The Queen
I won the national high school Drama Festival Best Actress Award in 1974 for my performance in Medea. I'm currently starring way, way, waaaaay off Broadway as the Contemporary Sportswear manager at Saks Fifth Avenue. I received a Tony at 15, but instead of the soft curls the package promised, I was left with nothing but frizz!
Attending San Francisco State University in the Fall, AJ Has performed in community theater all over the Bay. Glenn Gary Glenross Williamson (Moloko Theater, SF), Romeo & Juliet Romeo (Ohlone College), The Romantic Age Bobby (San Leandro Players), Macbeth - Lennox/Porter (Plensanton Playhouse), Guys And Dolls Lt. Brannigan (Chabot Little Theater), Butterflys Are Free Don Baker (Chanticleers Theatre). In his career thus far he has also done a few commercials and short films.
Sadie - a mouse
Natalie has a passion for acting and dancing. When Natalie is not excelling in school she enjoys a good game of soccer. Her ambition in life is to become a teacher or a veterinarian.
Henry, Sadie's husband - a mouse
Nicholas loves school his favorite part of school is PE where he enjoys running. Nicholas is drawn to the colors of red and blue. Nicholas chosen life avocation is to become a NBA star.
Esmeralda, Cinderella's stepsister
Lesley has lived in the Bay Area for about 11 years, and is originally from Sheffield, England. She works as a full time professional British Voice Over and has voiced many projects including commercials, video games, web site narrations and has even been the voice for toys! Her extensive client list includes Amazon.co.uk, Chevron, Hewlett Packard, Yahoo!, Webex and Oracle to name just a few! www.lesleylafferty.com
Drusilla, Cinderella's stepsister
Belinda Maloney is a Gemologist by day and a thespian at night. She has been involved in numerous musical productions in theatres around the Bay Area, both on stage and behind the scenes as Director. But her first love is singing and dancing on stage making people laugh.
Meriwether loves playing character roles with attitude and has with mixed success tackled roles in amateur production musicals as diverse as the sweet Victorian Irene Molloy in Hello Dolly (1997) and a very proper English senior citizen as Mrs. Higgins in My Fair Lady (1999). She has also played the sexy, buxom New Yorker, Irene Roth, in Crazy for You (1998) and a transplanted Texan, Cleo, in A Most Happy Fella (2000). As one of McGettigan's other loves is dancing, she was pleased that Cleo got to do some fancy footwork in the number "Big D". Some of the moves for this number are reminiscent of those she danced several years ago as Gladys in Bob Fosse's "Steam Heat" (Pajama Game 1994).Her other musical theatre credits include Damn Yankees, Sugar, and Oklahoma! In 1997 McGettigan was in the cast of "The Barbary Coast Players" where she performed the part of Mazeppa in "You Gotta Get a Gimmick" from Gypsy. She has not as yet found a venue for her hard won talents with the trumpet. In her real life she owns and runs an estate jewelry business in San Francisco named Meriwether, naturally.