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Rod Parker Plawriting Fellowship

Award Winning Production


By Sabrina Sexauer '22
Directed by Joseph Antoun

The student winner of the 2020 Rod Parker Playwriting Award sees their play taken from page to stage in this fully produced performance.

The Rod Parker Playwriting Award and NewFest are generously funded by Rod Parker '51.

APRIL 1–4, 2021
On this page you'll find detailed programmatic information
as well as notes from directors, designers, and the cast
about how our production of NEWFEST
took shape over the past few months.
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Meet the



Writing credits: Andromeda (Valdez Theatre Conference '21) and Over/Frustrated (Betsy Carpenter Playwriting Award '20). Sabrina would like to thank her beautiful friends, loving family, and darling partner.

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A message from the


Spring is a season of hope and excitement for what the near future holds for us. Never has that been as true as it is right now.


Adaptation has been our way of life for over a year. For Emerson Stage, spring also means new plays and new play development and adapting has been the norm for our process.


Welcome to NewFest 2021. I am thrilled to bring Going to California to this year's festival. Sabrina Sexauer’s new and exciting play springs us to the near future—2028. As the characters adapt to a traumatized situation and current technology, each forge ahead with their life in a new normalcy. 


I am incredibly grateful that we are able to present this beautifully warm and promising play for you. Thank you to Emerson Stage for their perseverance and resourcefulness which has enabled us to do so. I’d also like to give a huge virtual hug of gratitude to the entire production and creative team who found ways to work their magic in an unusual and challenging environment with a lot of unknowns. Even with meeting and rehearsing remotely, I am proud of the diligence and creativity with which you worked.


In a play where trauma and technology challenge the human spirit, I am touched by the humanity we all discovered and presented in this show. Like the characters in this play, thank you for proving that the human spirit is a tenacious force.


Joe Antoun is the founding Artistic Director of Centastage where he has developed, directed or produced over 70 new plays including six Boston Women On Top Festivals of new plays by women and four Boston Sings Boston cabarets of new songs. He is a recipient of the Independent Reviewers of New England (IRNE) Kenneth A. McDonald Award for Theater Excellence. Antoun is on the directing and acting faculty at Emerson College where he serves as the Artistic Director of NewFest.

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A message from the


ABOUT DAVID LOGGHE, MFA '22, Theatre Education and Applied Theatre

Professional acting credits: Coeur D'Alene Summer Theatre's Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (Baron Bomburst), The Music Man (Charlie Cowell), and Baskerville (Man 2 [12 Roles]). University theatre credits: Eastern Washington University's Julius Caesar (Brutus), To Kill a Mockingbird (Atticus), and Macbeth (Banquo).

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Meet the

Scenic Designer

DANIEL WOZNIAK, BFA '22, Theatre Design/Technology

Emerson Stage credits: What Remains Hidden (Is Still Known) (Second Assistant Scenic Designer), Stupid Fu##ing Bird (Assistant Scenic Designer), Good Breeding (Assistant Scenic Designer), This Golden Day (Assistant Props Master).

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Meet the

Costume Designer

MUNROE SHEARER, BFA '23 Theatre Design/Technology

Emerson Stage credits: Corduroy (Assistant Costume Designer) and Squeaky Fromme Love Song (Assistant Wardrobe Supervisor) Emerson College credit: 40th Annual EVVY Awards (Co-Wardrobe Designer). A massive thank you to Hunter, Trixie, and the Costume Shop Staff for helping to keep my head on straight.

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Meet the

Lighting Designer

SAM KISTHARDT, BFA '22, Theatre Design and Technology. 

Emerson Stage credits: Devil on Your Shoulder (Assistant Master Electrician), Working the Musical (Production Carpenter), Amanuensis (Assistant Master Electrician), Men on Boats (VMix Technician), Corduroy (Master Electrician), and Spring Awakening (VMix Technician). Emerson College credits: Kidding Around's Flat Stanley (Technical Director), 38th Annual EVVY Awards (Assistant Staging Supervisor), 39th Annual EVVY Awards (Master Electrician), and 40th Annual EVVY Awards (Staging Supervisor). Regional Credits: Lyric Theatre of Oklahoma's 2017–2018 Summer Season (Electrician),

A Christmas Carol (Light Board Op), Fun Home (Electrician); and Colorado Shakespeare Festival 62nd Summer Season (Staff Electrician).

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Meet the

Sound Designer

KAITLYN BOHLMAN, BFA '22, Theatre Design/Technology

Emerson Stage credits: Marisol (Production Sound Engineer), Everybody (Assistant. Sound Designer). Upcoming at Emerson Stage: The Late Wedding (Sound Designer), As You Like It (Sound Designer), Into the Woods (Assistant Sound Designer). Other credits: Chaffey College’s Macbeth (Assistant Sound Designer), Love & Information (Co-Sound Designer), As You Like It (Sound Designer), and The Taming of the Shrew (Sound Designer); Ophelia’s Jump Productions’ Stupid Fu##ing Bird (Lighting & Projections Designer). Thanks to family, friends, and my mentor Sheila Malone. I wouldn't be where I am if it weren’t for you all.

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Meet the

Props Lead

MATT BAYNES, BFA '21, Theatre Design/Technology

Emerson Stage credits: Good Breeding (Paint Charge), 10 Out of 12 (Scenic Designer), Newfest: The Devil on your Shoulder (Scenic Designer), Lucky Stiff (Assistant Prop Lead), Bulrusher (Paint Charge), NewFest: Who Donut (Assistant Scenic Designer), and Brazen (Assistant Scenic Designer). Emerson College credit: EVVY 37 and 38 (Paint Charge). Matt is a Shop Assistant in the Emerson Stage paint shop.

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Meet the

Stage Manager

CARTER WHITE, BFA '22, Stage and Production Management

Emerson Stage credits: Amanuensis, or the Miltons (Assistant. Stage Manager), The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (Assistant Stage Manager), Marisol (Production Supervisor), 10 Out of 12 (Associate Production Supervisor) Emerson College credits: Mercutio Troupe's Girl in the Machine (Assistant Stage Manager). Thank you to Kylie & Delene, Mom, Dad, Robin, Elizabeth, Henry, and Dylan, the SM class of '22, Sprinkler's Room, and every single person I have the privilege of loving

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Meet the


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EMILY CARRUTH (Isobel Close), BFA '23, Theatre and Performance. Emerson Stage debut! Thanks to my parents and friends who have always supported me.

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SAMARA CHAHINE (Noel Brookes), BFA '21, Theatre and Performance. Emerson Stage credits: Amanuensis, or The Miltons (Deborah) and The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (Crockett/Betty Dullfeet). Emerson College credits: Emerson Shakespeare Society’s A Winter’s Tale (Perdita) and Rareworks Theatre Company’s The Clinic (Reyna). Regional credit: Boston Theatre Marathon’s The Stakeout (Marty). Samara would like to thank all the kind people who have helped her along the way; she loves you 3000.

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MEGHAN DONAHUE (Josephine Handler), BFA '21, Theatre and Performance. Emerson Stage debut! Emerson College credits: Rareworks Theatre Company’s The Clinic (Carole) and Mercutio Troupe's When Her Art Is No Longer Her Own (A Representation of an Artist) (Devising Company and Script Supervisor). Thank you to my friends and family, as well as everyone who helped make this show happen.

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LUCA FERRARO (Robert Brooks), BFA '23 Theatre and Performance. Emerson Stage debut! Emerson College credits: Kidding Around’s 13: The Musical (Simon). A big thank you to both of my parents, all of my family and friends, the cast and crew, and everyone from suite 1214 for all of the support.

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KAITLIN PHELAN (Vera), BFA '21,  Theatre Education and Performance. Emerson Stage credits: Newfest Readings and Shorts' Some Christmas (Lindsay) and Good Breeding (Chorus). Emerson College credits: Musical Theatre Society’s First Date (Woman 1); Kidding Around’s Home: A Playmaking Piece (Ensemble); and Mercutio Troupe’s Owning It (Belinda). Thanks to her family and friends for their unconditional support, as well as Joe, Madison, Sabrina, and the entire Going to California cast and creative team for such a rewarding experience.

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JESSE SHAFORTH (Laramie Logan), BFA '23, Theater & Performance. Emerson Stage debut! Emerson College credits: Emerson Shakespeare Society's Much Ado About Nothing (Valentine); Theta's Or What You Won't (Abe). Thanks to mom and dad for not forcing me to be an economics major! Love you.

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ANNABEL WALL (Grier Sloane), MA '22, Theatre Education and Applied Theatre. Emerson Stage debut! Colorado State University credits: A Man of No Importance (Lily Byrne), The Laramie Project (Moises Kauffman, ensemble), Three Sisters (Natasha), Noises Off (Mrs. Clackett/Doty Ottley), and Little Shop of Horrors (choreographer). Other credits: Ruddyduck Theatre Company’s Esta Caja Se Siente Llena (Shannon) and Asking Strangers the Meaning of Life (Dancer & Genius); and Colorado State University One Act Play Festival’s Super Hot Raven (The Raven). Design credits: Openstage Theatre Company 2018–2019 season, (makeup designer and FX makeup artist). Thanks to my family for the unconditional love and support.

Meet the

Artistic and Production Staff

Transmedia Consultant DEREK CHRISTIANSEN
Acting Advisor NICOLE LEWIS

Dramaturgy Advisor ROBERT DUFFLEY
Lead Electrician Advisor TAYLOR NESS
Assistant Director MADISON GOLDBERG
Assistant Scenic Designer JOE MORALES
2nd Assistant Scenic Designer HARVEY JOHNSON
Paint Charge MARIA LAIRD
Assistant Props Lead MERCY SAUREZ
Assistant Sound Designer SUSAN ERYING
Production Sound Engineer SHELBY MARSH
Assistant Production Sound Engineer SARAH MILLER
Wardrobe Supervisor MUNROE SHEARER
Assistant Stage Manager KYLIE BERRY
2nd Assistant Stage Manager DELENE BEAUCHAMP
Production Supervisor SARAH BORD
Assistant Production Supervisor EL BRYANT
Run Crew

Abigail Anderson, Blake Berggren, Annajean Gionta,

Rose Hanish, Ian MacGillivray, MJ Mitchell, Maria Gabrielle Popa, Noelle Salisbury, Jocelyn Wadland, Claudia Whitehead

Meet the

Emerson Stage Staff


Artistic Director—Annie G. Levy
General Manager—David Colfer
Production Manager—Timothey Sullivan

Props Director—Ryan Bates

Costume Shop Supervisor—Richelle Devereaux-Murray

Resident Sound Designer—Elizabeth Cahill

Scenic Painter—Joe Keener

Sound Technician—Steven Deptula

Assistant General Manager—Alix Bigley

Assistant Costume Shop Supervisor—Brian Choinski

Draper/Cutter—Laurie Bramhall

Assistant Properties Manager—Lauren Corcuera

Assistant Production Manager: Curricular Support—Jamie Carty


Stage and Production Management—Debra A. Acquavella
Scenic Design—Luciana Stecconi

Scenic Painting—Joe Keener

Costume Design—Hunter Kaczorowski

Lighting Design—Scott Pinkney

Sound Design—Elizabeth Cahill


Emerson Stage Office Assistants—Carleigh Allen, Casper Apodaca, Shannon Horsey, Kaitlin Phelan, Alex Tawid, Jacob Tolentino
Production Management Assistants—Anthony Feola and Caitlin Hudecheck

Videographer—Benjamin Bernard and Jacqueline Thom

Scene Shop Assistants—Talia Colten and Samuel Kisthardt

Scene Shop Staff—Jonah Barricho, Sean Dougherty,

Marco Giacona, and Emerson Hart

Paint Shop Staff—Emily Curtis, Serino Nakayama, Garrett Traer,

Fernando Rueda, Kimberly Ndegwa, Leah Heath, Isabella Kochakian,

Lauren Velentzas, and Noelle DeConzo.

Prop Shop Assistant—Alex Koplos

Prop Technicians—Delene Beauchamp, Dan Bovair, Evy Burch,

Oliver Hawke, and Ryan Rock

Costume Shop Office Assistant—Sam Golub

Stitchers—Lorence Jones-Perpich, Tayla Dixon, Catriona Morris, Caitlin Johnson, Madeline Boschen, Molly Shaughnessy, Beatrice Ward, Dominic Letteri

Scene Shop Assistants—Matthew Baynes and Noelle DeConzo

Scenic Painters—Emily Curtis, Leah Heath, Garrett Traer, Serino Nakayama, Isabella Kochakian, and Kimberly Ndegwa

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