For Cast Bios for our 2013 production of The Merry Wives of Windsor, CLICK HERE
Lary Opitz, Artistic Director
Since his first Off Broadway credit in 1967, Lary Opitz has been a professional actor, director, designer, playwright, stage manager and technician on countless productions throughout the world, including Broadway, Off Broadway, Off Off Broadway, regional, and academic theatres. Among his Shakespearean roles are SHYLOCK (twice), FRIAR LAURENCE, POLONIUS, SIR TOBY BELCH, GONZOLO, AEGEON, MARCUS ANDRONICUS, DUNCAN, DUKE SENIOR, DUKE FREDERICK, THE PORTER, GREMIO, and PETER QUNCE. In recent years he performed in a production of WHAT I HEARD ABOUT IRAQ in NYC and has appeared in a number of films. He is currently Professor and Chair of Theatre at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY where he directs regularly and teaches Shakespearean acting. His April 2011 production of ROMEO AND JULIET was set in Buenos Aires and utilized the tango in both dance and music. He is a proud member of Actors Equity and United Scenic Artists.
Tim Dugan, Associate Artistic Director/Director of Education
Has been involved with Saratoga Shakespeare Company since their second season-A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Demetrius). Other shows with SSC: Twelfth Night (Orsino), Merchant of Venice (Antonio), As You Like It (Orlando), Much Ado About Nothing (Benedick), and The Tempest (Caliban). Other favorite credits include Song For My Father, Tuesdays with Morrie-Oldcastle Theatre Company; And Then There Were None-NYSTI; Noises Off- C-R Productions. Tim has recently finished his first year of MFA actor training at Temple University playing John Proctor in The Crucible and Boo in The Marriage of Bette & Boo. He has also trained at Shakespeare & Co. and American Conservatory Theatre. Tim taught acting and directed at the John Sayles School of Fine Arts and Union College. Proud member of Actors’ Equity. As the company opens its 13th season he is looking forward to building on founder William Finlay’s vision and broadening SSC’s educational and community outreach.
David Girard, 2013 Director in Residence
Proud Member of AEA. David is thrilled to be directing The Merry Wives of Windsor, especially with his good friends at SSC. No stranger to Saratoga, David most recently played Malvolio in last season’s Twelfth Night and Launcelot Gobbo in 2011’s The Merchant of Venice. Most recent directing credits include Incident (MFA Playfest, Temple U), Cloud 9 (Temple), An Empty Sack (Philadelphia Young Playwrights), The Hothouse, A Steady Rain (Theatre Voices), and Waiting for Lefty (Union College). David has also assisted Maggie Mancinelli-Cahill at Capital Rep, most recently on this season’s sizzling production of David Mamet’s Race. Regional: Captain Hook Peter Pan the Musical (TIS), Freddie Malins James Joyce’s The Dead (Cap Rep), Phaeton Metamorphoses (Cap Rep), Rutledge 1776 (NYSTI), Curley Of Mice and Men (NYSTI), The Reporter in Orphan Train, Petruchio in Taming of the Shrew (TCHH) The Soldier in Reunion (NYSTI). David holds his BA in Theatre and English Literature from Russell Sage College and currently lives in Philadelphia pursuing his MFA in Directing while on scholarship teaching at Temple University. David will be directing Tarell McCraney’s Marcus; Or the Secret of Sweet for Temple’s Mainstage this fall.
Executive Director: Barbara Opitz
Barbara Opitz is a graduate of New York City’s High School of Performing Arts and has studied dance with a variety of famed performers. She holds a B.A. from Queens College (City University of New York) and an M.A. from Teacher’s College, Columbia University. A professional dancer in New York City, she taught ballet for twelve years and has choreographed numerous dances and theater productions, including YENTL, THE THREEPENNY OPERA, MACBETH, THE COMEDY OF ERRORS, THE MERCHANT OF VENICE, ARCADIA, METAMORPHOSIS and A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM for the Theater Department, AMAHL AND THE NIGHT VISITORS for the Music Department, and THE WIZARD OF OZ for Home Made Theater. She has also taught in special education programs and on the elementary school level. Barbara teaches Movement for the Actor for the Theater Department and was co-founder of the Skidmore Shakespeare Programme, our study-abroad program in London. She also served as co-administrator for that program for many years. Barbara was formerly the Assistant Director of the Office of Student Academic Services and is very active in advising our students in both Department and College matters. She is currently serving as a producer of The Saratoga Shakespeare Company, an Actors Equity summer theater company in Saratoga Springs.
Brittney Belz, Resident Costume Designer
Brittney is excited to be working at Saratoga Shakespeare Company for her third season. She also continues to work at the Glimmerglass Festival in nearby Cooperstown, NY whenever possible. Her costume construction credits there include Traviata, The Marriage of Figaro, and Medea. Her work has been seen at theatres across the country including Montana Shakespeare in the Parks, The Weston Playhouse, and Williams College. Some of her favorite past designs include, Peter Pan (Union College); Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night (University of Virginia); and two seasons designing for the cast of the Connecticut Renaissance Faire.
Brandi Klein, Production Stage Manager
This is Brandi’s first time working with Saratoga Shakespeare Company and she is excited to be a part of The Merry Wives of Windsor. Brandi has worked regionally with Capital Repertory Theatre (Shakespeare Remix, A Friend of a Friend), Lake George Dinner Theatre (Skin Deep, The Love List) as well as the 2nd and 3rd Annual 24hr Theatre Projects presented by WAM/ Mop & Co. Brandi is a Proud Member of Actors Equity Association.
Kevin Miller, Technical Director
Kevin is happy to be a part of the Saratoga Shakespeare Company. He has been the technical director at Home Made Theater for the past two seasons, where he was the scenic designer for their recent production of Leading Ladies as well as the scenic and lighting designer for two Youth Conservatory productions. A current resident of Saratoga Springs, he studied the craft of acting at SUNY New Paltz before moving to Chicago, where he made the transition from being on stage to working backstage. Kevin would like to thank his family for their seemingly endless love and support.
Jay Rogoff, Dramaturg
Jay is a poet who teaches Shakespeare and other literature and writing courses at Skidmore College. His fifth book of poetry, Venera, will be published in the spring of 2014 by LSU Press.
Brian Sheldon, Assistant Stage Manager
Brian is excited to be working with Saratoga Shakespeare Company. He lives in Troy with his fi ancée Anna. Most of Brian’s time goes toward playwriting and teaching area kids circus skills with Circus Theatricks/Shakespeare’s Clowns. Brian has a bachelor’s degree in theater arts from Russell Sage College. His credits at New York State Theatre Institute include Charlie Brown, Reunion, Sleepy Hollow, and 1776. At Theatre Institute at Sage, his credits include Peter Pan,
Seussical, and A Year With Frog and Toad. Brian is a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association.