Stage Center Theatre 2013-2014 Season
Main Stage Production

Miss Julie
by August Strindberg

adapted in English by Kristin Hunt
Directed by Kristin Hunt

Spring of the 2014 Semester

A haughty young socialite. A servant with ideas above his station. A kitchen full of high-society excesses. One night’s indiscretion. Scandal. Intrigue. Controversy. Banned for decades after its first publication, Strindberg’s classic tale of greed, love, lust, and manipulation still has the power to shock and provoke us. We reinvent Miss Julie in a bold contemporary style that pulls audience members into the action of this searing battle of the sexes. In an immersive experience, this production will engage your sense of sight, sound, smell, and even taste as Miss Julie and her lover and tormenter, Jean, struggle for supremacy in the ultimate game of cat and mouse.  

Heather Chilson - Julie
Jill Matel   - Jean
Nickolena Sellen   - Kristin
Tara Shedor - Chorus
Rufus Wood - Chorus
Ann Stoner      - Chorus

A Note From the Director

When August Strindberg wrote it in 1888, Miss Julie was scandalous.  The story of boundary-crossing flirtation, sex that is more about lust than love, and inversion of social norms separating male from female and upper from lower class was so provocative that the play was banned for decades in many parts of Europe and the US. Strindberg’s play explores the   impulse to break with convention, as well as the potential   consequences of these choices. We have tried to remain true to this impulse, interrogating the connections between risk,      desire, and convention in our original production.

Our adaptation of this classic work includes lines from Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, a French contemporary of      Strindberg’s who explored similar questions of power, sex, and desire through the medium of food writing. Our chorus uses lyrics from blues songs highlighting the connection between food and sex. The carnival atmosphere in which the original story unfolds inspired our production, which highlights the connection between desire, power, and consumption in an    atmosphere steeped in both risk and play.

While making this performance, we asked ourselves a series of questions: What does it mean to desire something? What     inspires us to take risks? What is behind our impulse to identify and consume foods that heighten our ability to experience desire? What do we risk when we open ourselves to others in this way? What rewards drive us to assume these risks? Why are these nearly irresistible impulses so often accompanied by shame or fear?

We have enjoyed making this piece. We hope you have enjoyed consuming it.

Kristin Hunt                            

Heather Chilson (Miss Julie) is excited to return to performing in theatre and has thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to work with the cast of Miss Julie. When not performing, Heather is a full-time student at Northeastern and balances her free time between being Mommy to her two favorite tiny humans, and with her best friends Jay, Melina, and  Taylor.

Jill Matel (Jean) Jill is extremely excited to be part of Miss Julie as her Swan Song and 16th production with Stage Center.  She will be graduating with a CMT degree and minor in Theatre this May and plans to pursue her Masters at Rose Bruford College in Kent, England this fall.  Jill would like to thank the entire CMT department for their many years of advice, support, guidance and wisdom.  Thanks to Kristin and the cast and crew of M. Julie for their openness and sense of play.  Very special thanks to Anna, Lisa, John and Lizz who have been there every step of this journey and DanO for his incredible support and belief in her.  LU

Nickolena Sellen (Kristin) is a senior and finishing her final semester at NEIU. Some of her favorite shows she has participated in include You're a Good Man Charlie Brown, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and All My Sons. She would like to thank the amazing CMT department for their never ending support, especially Tony Adams, Dan Wirth,  Lisa Cantwell, Rodney Higginbotham, and Kristin Hunt for truly challenging her and helping her through her time at NEIU. She would also like to thank her family and friends for not getting too angry that she is never around.

Tara Shedor (Chorus) is currently working towards her bachelor’s in Communication, Media and Theatre at Northeastern Illinois University. She hasn’t been in any theatre productions since high school, but has been rocking out with her band *Prairie Porn* since May of last year. When she is not trying to save the world as the Social Justice and Diversity Coordinator for the Programming Board here on campus, you can find her and her cat, Penelope, at home drinking away their sorrows.

Ann Stoner (Chorus) is in her first semester at NEIU studying Earth Science. This is her first time on stage ever. Yes. EVER! She wants to thank an amazing and so talented group of actors and crew for encouraging and believing in her everyday!! And a huge heartfelt thanks to Kristin! Walking on her hands may or not happen!....Thank you so much! She is so incredibly honored to be here!!! Thank you thank you thank you!

Rufus Wood (Chorus) is studying Communication, Media and Theatre at Northeastern Illinois University. He was previously in the Stage Center’s production of The Braggart Soldier. When he is not writing the next great American novel, he is producing music. He would like to thank Kristin for this opportunity.

_________Artistic Staff_________

Kristin Hunt (Director) is a new faculty member in CMT. Her research and creative practice focuses on adaptations of classic works, with a special interest in food and performance. Favorite recent projects include Woyzeck (2013, Madison, WI) and Pi and Performance (NEIU, 2014). She is excited and humbled to work with such a generous, talented, and open-minded cast of performers. 

Jacklyn Nowotnik (Stage Manager) is a Communication, Media and Theatre major with a double minor in Journalism and Music. Although this is her first Stage Center production, she has performed in the music department’s production of The Secret Garden and West Side Story. When Jacklyn isn’t at Stage Center, she is busy producing the Independent and getting excited for graduation. Shout outs to the cast and crew of Miss Julie and the CMT department for being so awesome.

Esmeralda Carbajal (Assistant Stage Manager) is studying how to talk to and entertain humans at Northeastern Illinois University and is sad to be done this May (not.T minus 38 days). She is very glad to have found a spot here on Miss Julie and has enjoyed the chance to learn a new aspect of the theatre, and work with the SEXiest cast EVER. Esmeralda also enjoys long walks on the beach, caramel frappuccinos and laughter. She hopes to live long and prosper. Many thanks go out to her family, friends & God.

Claudio Siguenza (Assistant Stage Manager) Claudio is studying Communication, Media, and Theatre at Northeastern Illinois University. Claudio is an assistant stage manager for Miss Julie. When Claudio gets hungry and stuffs his face with pizza, he later regrets it at the gym, while running on the treadmill. Claudio would like to thank Kristin Hunt and the whole crew for the experience he received working for Miss Julie.

John Rodriguez (Lighting Designer) joined the theatre faculty at NEIU ten years ago and has been teaching courses in technical theatre as well as working as a designer on Stage Center Theatre productions. Most recent designs include Around the World in Eighty Days, Bleacher Bums, Odd Couple, A Midsummer Night’s Dream as well as Thymely Theatre’s productions of You Can’t Take It With You and As You Like It.

Lizz Otto-Cramer (Scenic Designer) is happy to be making her return to NEIU after a 5 year hiatus. A graduate from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Lizz has designed, painted, and created props for numerous theatres throughout the nation, including the Kennedy Center and Universal Studios Hollywood. She greatly enjoys working with her students and fellow faculty at NEIU, and is excited to be teaching again.

Jana Anderson (Costume Designer) has worked with the Stage Center Theatre for the last few years. Her work has also been featured by numerous theatre groups including Redmoon Theatre, Light Opera Works, Irish Repertory Theatre, just to name a few. Prior to coming to the United States, Jana created elaborate costumes for classical opera productions at the Slovak National Theatre in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia. When she’s not preparing costumes for theatre productions, Jana is busy designing and creating unique haute couture fashions for individual clients in the US and Europe.

Rolando Gonzalez (Student Set Designer) is majoring in Communication, Media and Theatre at Northeastern Illinois University. This is Rolando’s first set design he has created. When Rolando is not designing sets he works with high school and elementary students as a tutor. A shout-out goes to Rolando’s tutor, Lizz Otto-Cramer: Thank you for believing in him.

___________Production Staff___________

Producer.......Rodney Higginbotham
Director.......Kristin Hunt
Stage Manager....Jacklyn Nowotnik
Assistant Stage Manager......Esmerelda Carbajal
Assistant Stage Manager....Claudio Siguenza
Scenic Designer.....Lizz Otto-Cramer
Costume Designer......Jana Anderson
Lighting Designer.....John Rodriguez
Costume Mistress.......Mary Nano
Wardrobe...................................Monica Ochoa
Prop Master...................................Jillian Mayer
Candy design.................Leigh Henderson and Kristin Hunt
Candy Taster..........................Katrina Bell-Jordan Master
Carpenter.........Jill Matel      
Student Set Designer......Rolando Gonzalez
Light Board Operator.....Erika Monterroso Set

Construction................................................................Theatre Practicum
Matthew Artarian, Linda Berlow, Julissa Cabrera, Chi Chiu, Matthew Greenberg, Nicole Jaehnke, Alexandra LoBianco, Patrick Phalen, Arnell Pugh-Peek, David Reynoso, Michael Saylor, Heidi Schmidt, Nickolena Sellen, Natalija Stankovic, Ajoyi Stackhouse, Kathy Styer, Larry Thigpen, Catalina Vasile, Tracey Washington, Carly Weich, Rufus Wood, Zachary Banasik, Breanne Benson, Theodore Garibaldi, Mariana Gonzales Fuentes, Victor Gonzalez, David Hansen, Joseph Kelty, Matthew Kestler, Frank Konrath, Marilyn Laboy, Patrick McIntyre, Diego Mejia, Susan  Nirschel, Andrea Nunez, Roxanne Reinhold, Robert Schein, Lucyna Tekiela, Juan Torres, Wojciech Warias, Angela Weisgal, Samantha De La, Saul Marty, Margaret Rios, Jimmy Radecki, Shannon Zich, Hailey Whitney

__________Theatre Personnel__________
Managing Artistic Director Rodney Higginbotham
Theatre Bookkeeper Elizabeth Krahulec
Publications & Publicity Staff Mary Nano, Phil Morris and Ashley Campbell
Box Office & House Managers Maciej Mardosz,  Laura Carmer, Mary Nano, Maggie Rios, Philip Winston

CMT Department talent scholars
Laura Carmer, Sean Ihnat, Maciej Mardosz, Jill Matel, Phil Morris, Mary Nano, Alison Petroski, Nickolena Sellen, Bartholomew Webster,  Edward Philip Winston, Jesus Alcantara, Rodney Burnett, Ashley Campbell, and Robert Leon.

Special Thanks to
Dr. Wamucii Njogu, Dr. Richard Helldobler, Dr. Katrina Bell-Jordan, and Mary McAvoy.

Publicity Photo

L to R chorus members of Miss Julie -Ann Stoner/ Tara Shedor

Return to the Home Page of the Stage Center Theatre
Go to the Scrapbook of the Stage Center Theatre