Welcome to the Actors Ensemble of Berkeley website!

Staged Reading - The Final Trial of Richard III & The Queens of France

By Mary Schaller

Staged Reading

Directed by Carol Dechaine Reyes

Wednesday - November 14, 2012 at  8 p.m.


ONE NIGHT ONLY - $5 - $10 sliding scale

 Presented in concert with our Fall 2012 main stage production of Shakespeare's RICHARD III, Actors Ensemble is producing a series of staged readings of related works.

Directed by Carol Dechaine Reyes, longtime actress and recently first-time director at Masquers, these two one-acts are both acclaimd works in their own right. The Final Trial of Richard III, by Mary Schaller, examines the evidence for the damning portrayal of Richard in RICHARD III, as opposed to other evidence. History and Rumor prosecutors, Charity acts as Richard's counsel, and the AUDIENCE acts as the jury. Who wins? Richard - or Shakesepare (and by proxy therefore Sir Thomas More).

The second one act, The Queens of France is by the acclaimed American playwright Thornton Wilder ("Our Town", "The Matchmaker"). It is the story of a conniving lawyer who preys on women in 1860’s New Orleans by convincing each of them they are the rightful Queen of France - a delightful, lyrical piece of theatre.




Bruce Kaplan


Jill Schmitz


Caroline Schneider


Jacquie Duckworth 


Rose Gigliuto








Aaron Lindstrom


Michael A. O’Brien


Joseph J. O'Loughlin


Jeffrey Trescott


George Doerr


Bill Chessman


Mary Kidwell


Julie Kuwabara-Lacson


Caroline Schneider


Jill Schmitz


Rose Gigliuto








Paul Jennings


Edward Kimak


Fred Webre


Erik Pedersen


Al Badger


Steve Schwartz


Bruce Kaplan 


Jacquie Duckworth


Lisa Wang


Cameron  Dodd


Emmy Pierce

Thanks to Suzan Lorraine for running lights

Carol DeChaine Reyes (Director) has been acting, singing, dancing and choreographing shows since high school and brings her enthusiasm for theatre and organizational skills to her new role as director.  This is her second production and is overwhelmed by the talent you will see in these two one acts tonight and hopes she will be lucky enough to work with many of them again. She trusts you will enjoy participating as the jury deciding the fate of Richard’s reputation in The Final Trial of Richard III and watching the most interesting machinations of  Msr. Cahusac in The Queens of France.

Al Badger (Dighton/Murderer One) made his Actors Ensemble debut as Noakes in Arcadia earlier this year, and has also performed with San Leandro Players, Town Hall Theater and Brookside Repertory Theatre. Over the past few years he has been honored to be part of the Subterranean Shakespeare's series of staged readings of the Canon. Thanks to Carol and Robert. Excelsior

Bill Chessman (Sir Thomas More) took up acting in 1990.  He has performed on both sides of the San Francisco Bay and both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.  He has appeared in three plays at Actors Ensemble (A Chorus of Disapproval, Holiday and Communicating Doors).  He also writes plays for stage and radio, some of which have been produced.  He is very tall, except on radio

Cameron Dodd (Young Prince Edward) Cameron made his first appearance with Actors Ensemble in our recent production of Arcadia, and since then he’s been in a number of our staged readings. He’s been interested in theater for many years, first studying improv then focusing on Shakespeare with CalShakes, including its Summer Conservatory. This year, he’s studying dialect/performance with Deb Eubanks (Berkeley Rep).

George Doerr (Shakespeare) has been trodding the boards since 1987. His most frequent appearances are at Pinole Community Players, The Masquers, and Pittsburg Community Theatre. Favorite roles have been Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls and Felix Unger in The Odd Couple.  This is his first at Shakespeare.

Jacquie Duckworth (Queen Elizabeth Woodville, the Player/Messenger and Mmsl Pointevin) has performed in theater and film throughout the Bay Area and is delighted to be here tonight with Actor's Ensemble of Berkeley. She is owner of Corporate Improv Solutions, a training company which uses improvisational theater to teach sales, customer service, and presentation skills.

Rose Gigliuto (Countess of Desmond/Mme Arnaut) has been performing off and on in the Bay Area for 30 years last seen in Agatha Christie's A Murder is Announce.  Retired from veterinary medicine, she is now an independent contractor doing bookkeeping, billing and collections, insurance billing and has her own in home pet sitting business. 

Paul Jennings (Richard III, the Player) is delighted to be working with Actors Ensemble. He has worked extensively in Northern California, appearing primarily in Shakespeare productions (44 productions of 26 of the plays), and has worked with Berkeley Rep,Cal Shakes, Shakespeare, ETC (Co-founder), Pacific Repertory  Theatre, Shakespeare at Stinson, and many other companies. Recent roles include Falstaff in The Boar's Head  with Theatre Pub, and the title roles in Richard III at Shady Shakespeare, and Macbeth with Subterranean Shakespeare.  He is featured in Actors Ensemble’s current production of Richard III as Buckingham.

Bruce Kaplan (James Tyrrel/Ghost of Henry VI & Msr Cahusac) is excited to be back at AEB. Bruce most recently appeared at the Live Oak in For Men Only.  Also this year he has appeared in The Fantasticks and The Mousetrap at Altarena Playhouse, and in Jip, His Story for the Marsh Youth Theatre. Thanks for supporting community theatre!

Mary Kidwell (Rumor) is happy to be back at Actor's Ensemble of Berkeley, playing the deliciously nasty Rumor.  Thanks, Carol, for letting me be the mean one!

Edward Kimak (Brackenbury/Ghost of Edward) fell in love with acting while spending hours mesmerized by Sid Caesar and Milton Berle during TV’s Golden Age.  After performing in Chicago, Edward moved to San Francisco and studied acting at Studio ACT. He has appeared in Actors’ Ensemble of Berkeley’s staged reading of Enrico IV and is currently Hastings in Richard III.

Julie Kuwabara-Lacson (Charity) most recently appeared in A Pinoy Midsummer.. (Helena) directed by Lorna Velasco, a Filipino American adaptation of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream from Bindlestiff Studios.  Other productions include Stories High (Dream) directed by Jocelyn Deona de Leon at Bindlestiff Studios,  Love Edition II (Sugar Plum Fairy) directed by Yato Yoshida at Bindlestiff Studios, and Ching Chong Chinaman (Chinese Lady) by Lauren Yee at Impact Theatre.

Aaron Lindstrom (Richard III) earned his BFA in Acting from the University of Montana. Past credits include Sir Hugh Evans in The Merry Wives of Windsor, Mitch Mahoney in Putnam County Spelling Bee, and Valentine in Arcadia. He is also a singer/songwriter and can be found playing music all over the Bay Area. Aaron would love to thank Carol and the Actors Ensemble for allowing him to play such an interesting and complex character.

Michael A. O'Brien (Bailiff) most recently brushed up his shakespeare in the Masquers' concert production of Kiss Me Kate. Other recent roles include Doc Baugh in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Franz in The Producers, and Mitch in ...Spelling Bee. Since retiring in '09, he spends his time doing Grampa daycare, docenting at Rosie the Riveter National Park, and theatre, including lighting Grease, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change, and The Full Monty. Thanks to Carol for this gig and Secrets.

Joseph J. O’Loughlin (Time) has appeared at Actor's Ensemble in Shaw's  Heartbreak House as the Burglar and in several staged readings. He has also performed numerous staged readings at Subterranean Shakespeare. He was most recently seen in Elvis Has Left the Building as Colonel Tom Parker at Tabard Theatre and the Judge in the Hatcher adaptation of Gogle's The Government Inspector for Bus Barn Theatre.

Erik Pedersen (Buckingham/Catesby) is making his first appearance with the Actors Ensemble of Berkeley. He was most recently seen in All My Sons at the Actors Theatre of San Francisco.

Emmy Pierce (the Duke of York) is a Berkeley native who has previously appeared in Actors' Ensemble of Berkeley readings of The Crucible, Enrico IV, and Pseudolus. She graduated from Amherst College in 2011, and is happy to be back in the Bay Area doing theater again.

Jill Schmitz (Queen Anne and Marie Sidonie Cressaux) studied theater at UC Davis performing in classics, new works and the avant garde. Currently living in San Francisco you can find Jill mountain biking, cooking and reading in her free time. Jill most recently appeared as Mae in Tennessee William’s Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

Caroline Schneider (Queen Elizabeth Woodville and Madam Pugeot), having just moved across the country from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, couldn't be more pleased to be a part of the The Final Trial/Queens of France!  She just had the amazing opportunity of playing a free-loving werewolf in Diabla Productions' Zomburlesque and will be seen as Mrs. Martin in The Overcast Theatre's The Bald Soprano in December.  A big thank you to Carol for the opportunity!!

Steve Schwartz (Forrest/Murderer Two) is originally from Brookline, Mass. Graduated UCLA Theater Arts with a Masters Degree.  Has been active in performing in many Bay Area theaters.  Recent Roles include: Headmaster  in The History Boys at New Conservatory Theater  SF, Deputy Dindon in La Cage Aux Folles at Broadway by the Bay, San Mateo, Chief Inspector Hubbard in Dial M for Murder at Hillbarn Theater, Foster City and Dr. Bradman in Blithe Spirit at Palo Alto Players, Palo Alto.

Jeffrey Trescott (History) moved to the Bay Area in 1981 with 17 acting friends who became the core of the Theatre of the Blue Rose. Over the next 15 years he learned his craft, appearing in over 60 TBR productions. Since then he has performed with various Bay Area theatres, including the Willows, Lamplighters, Lafayette Town Hall, and Shotgun Players, and Actors Ensemble in Heartbreak House and the current production of Richard III.

Lisa Wang (Queen Anne, the Player) began working with Actor's Ensemble in Passion Play by Sarah Ruhl, in her turn as Queen Elizabeth, Adolf Hitler and Ronald Reagan.  She has since collaborated with AE in several of their staged reading series as well as their Improv at AE series.  Lisa is a member of the improv theater groups, The Streetlight People and The Five Deadly Improvisers.  More info at thestreetlightpeople.com and fivedeadly.com.

Fred Webre (George, Duke of Clarence/Henry Tudor-Earl of Richmond) grew up in Berkeley and is very happy to be a part of the staged reading series at the Actors Ensemble of Berkeley.  He has also been seen in film and television, and in Actors Ensemble staged readings, including Proof and Pseudolus.

Performed as STAGED READINGS one night only, Wednesday, November 14th at 8 p.m., at Live Oak Theatre, 1301 Shattuck (at Berryman), Berkeley - just down the street from the Gourmet Ghetto. $5-$10 sliding scale (pay at the door). Doors open at 7:30 p.m.

Wednesday - November 14, 2012, 8 p.m.

Tags: Staged Readings

Actors Ensemble Facebook Group

Thank You

Actors Ensemble of Berkeley is delighted to acknowledge the Berkeley Civic Arts Program and Civic Arts Commission's support in the form of a grant of $8,000.00 awarded in 2017. Also, a thank you to Theatre Bay Area for a grant of $2,500.00.

Actors Ensemble of Berkeley - P.O. Box 663 - Berkeley - California - 94701 ¦ Our Answering Service: (510) 649-5999 ¦

We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Federal Tax ID #946139640, since 04-1967