Welcome to the Actors Ensemble of Berkeley website!

The Imaginary Invalid

By Moliere
Translated by Charles Theron Hall
Adapted and Directed by Meryn MacDougall
September13, 2020 at 7:00 PM PST
This will be a Zoom virtual performance on your screen
Tickets (Free or donation, but you must get a ticket)

The Imaginary Invalid Intro

Synopsis


Moliere's classic play tells the story of Argan, a rich nobleman whose hypochondria is easily manipulated by the greedy and sly Dr. Diafoirus, and whose vanity is likewise manipulated by his second wife Beline. Argan sees a solution to his healthcare-related financial woes by marrying off his daughter to Thomas, son of Diafoirus, though Angelique's true love is the earnest Cleante. Will true love seize the day, or will Argan's lack of adequate health insurance lead to a bitter end for all? Tune into our live online performance to find out!

How will this work? Sign up at this link. We will email you a link the morning of the performance. We will send a few reminders the week prior. Just before the performance, click on the link and you will be sent to the website for the live performance. Tickets are free but donations are accepted - with a few perks available! The performance will last about 2 hours including a 10-minute intermission, with a talk-back afterwards with the actors and creative team.


CAST

Toinette - Sionne Elise
Argan - Marcie Rich
Beline - Lisa Wang
Angelique - Rosemarie Kingfisher 
Cleante - Regina Leon 
Dr. Diafoirus - David Ghilardi 
Beralde - Jai Jhala 
Thomas - Marco Neves
Insurance - Grace Nix (understudy for Argan and Dr. Diaforius)
Billing - Alice Highman (understudy for Toinette, Angelique, and Beline)
Mr. de Bonnefoi - Abe Karplus (understudy for Cleante, Thomas, and Beralde)


CREW

Director/Adapter - Meryn MacDougall
Stage Manager - Kaitlin Weinstein

Costumes - Kate Patrick
Graphics - Vicki Victoria

Publicity - Jerome Solberg


The Imaginary Invalid Cast & Crew Bios

 

Sionne Elise (Toinette)

Sionne Elise (Toinette)

Sionne Elise (Toinette) made her stage debut with Actors Ensemble of Berkeley at age 13, in their production of Curse of the Starving Class. Now, she is a graduate of both Oakland School for the Arts and UCLA's School of Theater Film and Television. She loves theater as well as film, having worked closely with the likes of Francis Ford Coppola (Distant Vision) and Spike Jonze (The New Normal). In non-COVID times, Sionne would have been in Scotland for the summer performing in the Edinburgh Fringe Theater Festival. Luckily, when one door closes another one opens! Now, she couldn't be more excited to be part of the amazing cast in The Imaginary Invalid. She feels lucky to still have the opportunity to perform, and is so proud of everyone coming together to make this virtual show possible. Break a virtual leg!

Marcie Rich (Argan)

Marcie Rich (Argan)

Marcie Rich (Argan) is very pleased to be working with Director Meryn Macdougall and the production team at Actors Ensemble of Berkeley. Marcie has performed in AE‘s staged readings of Priscilla Dreams the Answer and Will Eno’s Middletown. Before The Imaginary Invalid, Marcie performed in the Inferno Theatre Company’s production of Metamorphoses and in Anton’s Well Theater Company’s production of Caryl Churchill’s Here We Go.

Lisa Wang (Beline)

Lisa Wang (Beline)

Lisa Wang (Beline) feels very grateful and excited to be part of this AE production, which is helping to explore and shape what theatre can look like in a pandemic world. Theatre and art is vital, especially in an apocalyptic world, so she is honored to be part of the effort to keep art in our lives. She has been involved in many past AE productions, including The Skin of Our Teeth, An Enemy of the People, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged), and The Marriage of Figaro, to name a few. She has also performed with other companies, including Contra Costa Civic Theatre, Playwright's Center of San Francisco, and in the SF Olympians Festival. Lisa is also active in Improvised theatre, and has performed throughout the country and locally; she has performed with groups in the Bay Area including: BATS Improv, Un-Scripted, Secret Improv Society, Improv Marin, and Social Studies Improv. Lisa was also a founding member of the improv group, The Five Deadly Improvisers. Thank you for supporting theatre and artists!

Rosemary Kingfisher (Angelique)

Rosemary Kingfisher (Angelique)

Rosemary Kingfisher (Angelique) has been acting in the Bay Area since she graduated from Sonoma State University in 2017. Since then she has acted with Theatre companies including the San Francisco Shakespeare Festival, Bay Area Children’s Theatre, Ross Valley Players and Playground SF. She has gained further experience training with Shakespeare and Company’s Actor Training program in Lenox, MA and recently graduated from San Francisco Circus Center's 7-month Clown Conservatory, a professional circus training program. Most recently she has performed in two ‘Zoom’ style productions, a new play, The Emeryville Horror with Same Boat Theatre Co. and as Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet with Lake County Theatre Co. Rose is very excited to continue exploring the world of Zoom Theatre, this time through comedy with the cast of The Imaginary Invalid and Actors Ensemble of Berkeley.

Regina Leone (Cleante)

Regina Leone (Cleante)

Regina Leone (Cleante) A lover of theatre, folkloric dancing and amateur botany, Regina Leon found her truest self while acting. She is an actor and dancer based in San Francisco and graduated from San Francisco State with a BA in Drama in 2018. During her last year in school, her interest in and love for devised work partnered her up with young companies such as Troupe Theatre and SoundPlay. With her peers, she helped devise classical plays, folktales, and short stories.

David Ghilardi (Dr. Diafoirus)

David Ghilardi (Dr. Diafoirus)

David Ghilardi (Dr. Diafoirus) is the author of the Dark Chicago series. The One You Feed, (7th book) will be out this November. You can see his Film/TV credits on IMDB and at https://www.davidghilardi.com/. Love to Jazmin. (Show 174)

Jai Jhala (Beralde)

Jai Jhala (Beralde)

Jai Jhala (Beralde) is originally from India but now calls the Bay area his home. Jai is an Engineer by day and an Actor at night. This is his first production with Actors Ensemble of Berkeley and is thrilled to be a part of this cast. This also happens to be his first English play ever so excited for that as well! Most recent roles include Lallan Prasad in Rishtaa (adaptation of Anton Chekhov's The Proposal) by Cloud Play House and Pradeep in Divided/By, a production of Bay Area Drama Company. Apart from acting, Jai enjoys sports, music and reading history.

Marco Neves (Thomas)

Marco Neves (Thomas)

Marco Neves (Thomas) is a Bay Area native, who is thrilled to be making his debut at Actors Ensemble of Berkeley. This is his fourth professional production as a featured actor. Recently, he featured in the play, Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue at the Pear Theatre. His previous credits include: This Street and the Next, and The Circuit.

Grace Nix (Insurance, understudy for Argan and Dr. Diaforius)

Grace Nix (Insurance, understudy for Argan and Dr. Diaforius)

Grace Nix (Insurance, understudy for Argan and Dr. Diaforius) Hi all! I hope you're as safe as you can be this 2020! I'm new to the Bay Area theater scene, coming from Massachusetts and New Orleans. I have over 15 years of acting and comedy experience, a B.A. in Theater and Film Studies from Wesleyan University, including a summer learning at the National Theater Institute, have spent years performing improv comedy, and most recently acted and wrote in a devised theater company in New Orleans. I'm so excited to perform in my first Bay Area production with the AEB! Tune in to this virtual version of The Imaginary Invalid and entertain your stir-crazy, corona-addled brains with some 17th-century French ridiculousness! Much love to all of you.

Alice Highman (Billing, understudy for Toinette, Angelique, and Beline)

Alice Highman (Billing, understudy for Toinette, Angelique, and Beline)

Alice Highman (Billing, understudy for Toinette, Angelique, and Beline) is thrilled to be part of the cast of The Imaginary Invalid! Some of her recent acting credits include Puppet Show (Shelton Theater), The Misanthrope (Troupe Theatre), Pear Slices (the Pear Theatre), and Orange Julius (SF Olympians Festival). Alice is passionate about storytelling across mediums and is a firm believer in the power of art to move the needle and challenge the status quo. She is a founding artist of the ORO Arts Lab for Theater, Film, and Performance, and is a graduate of USC and Harvard Law School.

Abe Karplus (Mr. de Bonnefoi, understudy for Cleante, Thomas, and Beralde))

Abe Karplus (Mr. de Bonnefoi, understudy for Cleante, Thomas, and Beralde))

Abe Karplus (Mr. de Bonnefoi, understudy for Cleante, Thomas, and Beralde) is excited to be making his debut with Actors Ensemble of Berkeley. He has been acting since the age of four, and has performed with UC Santa Barbara's Shakespeare in the Park and as part of an acting conservatory with Shakespeare Santa Cruz. Currently, Abe is working as a software engineer at Astranis, designing communications satellites.

Meryn MacDougall (Director and Adapter)

Meryn MacDougall (Director and Adapter)

Meryn MacDougall (Director and Adapter) is thrilled to have the opportunity to create during the Covid Era, “It has been an honour to work with such talented artists as we navigate and explore what it means to perform a farce in the digital world.” In addition to directing, Meryn is also an actor (theatre, film, and voice over), fight director, and writer. Meryn would like to thank Actors Ensemble of Berkeley for taking a leap of faith and producing a zoom performance. Special thanks to Kaitlin, Kate, Jerome and Michael. Thank you to her husband and dog Kingsley for all the love and support.

Kaitlin Weinstein (Stage Manager)

Kaitlin Weinstein (Stage Manager)

Kaitlin Weinstein (Stage Manager) is in her final year of her bachelor’s degree in both Theater & Performance Studies and English at UC Berkeley. On the Berkeley campus, she has been involved with five productions in the Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies, and she holds management positions in two student theater organizations. Outside of school, she has worked with theater companies such as Cal Shakes, ACT, Theatre Lunatico, and Actors Ensemble of Berkeley. Kaitlin began her technical theater journey in costume design, which she continues to love doing in addition to stage management. The Imaginary Invalid has been a journey in exploring a new medium, and she is excited to share with you what the team has discovered along the way.



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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.

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