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Event Calendar

The Tallest Tree in the Forest

JAN 10 – FEB 16, 2014

By Daniel Beaty

Directed by Moisés Kaufman
The Kansas City Repertory Theatre / La Jolla Playhouse Production
in association with Tectonic Theater Project

in the Kreeger Theater

Who’s Who


(Paul Robeson) last appeared at Arena Stage in Emergence-SEE! (now re-titled Emergency). His play Resurrection made its premiere at Arena and was performed as part of the theater's 2008/09 season. Daniel is an award-winning actor, singer, writer and motivational speaker. His critically acclaimed plays Through the Night, Emergency, Mr. Joy and The Tallest Tree in the Forest have been performed at venues ranging from Lincoln Center to the White House, and have garnered numerous awards, including an Obie Award for writing and performance and two NAACP Theater Awards. A highly requested keynote speaker and thought leader, Daniel has worked throughout the U.S., Europe and Africa, speaking and performing on programs with luminaries such as Bill Cosby, Deepak Chopra, Hill Harper, Jill Scott, Donnie McClurkin and Ruby Dee. An adjunct professor at Columbia University, diversity trainer and youth development specialist, Daniel has spoken at staff retreats and led leadership training for a myriad of non-profits and corporations. In fall 2013, Daniel launched a nationwide initiative, funded by W.K. Kellogg and Ford Foundations among others, to use the tools of storytelling to help individuals and communities heal from trauma. He holds a BA with Honors in English and Music from Yale University and an MFA in Acting from the American Conservatory Theater. His poem Knock Knock became an internet sensation receiving millions of views, and has been transformed into a children’s book, also titled Knock Knock, published by Little Brown Books. Penguin-Random House will publish his empowerment book Transforming Pain to Power this March. Follow his work at and on Twitter @DanielBBeaty. Back


(Director) returns to Arena Stage where he previously directed his plays 33 Variations (premiered at Arena) and The Laramie Project Cycle. Moisés is a Tony- and Emmy-nominated director and award-winning playwright. He most recently directed the Broadway revival of The Heiress with Jessica Chastain and wrote and directed 33 Variations on Broadway, starring Jane Fonda, which received five Tony nominations. Moisés also directed Rajiv Joseph's Pulitzer Prize finalist Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo with Robin Williams on Broadway in spring 2011. Previous to that, Moisés directed the Pulitzer and Tony Award-winning play I Am My Own Wife. His plays Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde and The Laramie Project have been among the most performed plays in America over the last decade. He recently directed his first opera, El Gato con Botas (Puss in Boots). Other credits include The Nightingale (La Jolla Playhouse), A Common Pursuit (Roundabout), Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo (Mark Taper Forum), Macbeth with Liev Schreiber (Public Theater), This Is How It Goes (Donmar Warehouse), One Arm by Tennessee Williams (New Group and Steppenwolf Theater Company), Master Class with Rita Moreno (Berkeley Repertory Theater) and Lady Windermere's Fan (Williamstown Theater Festival). Moisés also co-wrote and directed the film adaptation of The Laramie Project for HBO, which received two Emmy Award nominations for Best Director and Best Writer. He is the Artistic Director of Tectonic Theater Project, creator of Moment Work (Tectonic's method for creating theater) and a Guggenheim Fellow in Playwriting. Back

KENNY J. SEYMOUR (Music Director/Incidental Music and Arrangements) makes his Arena Stage debut with this production. His Broadway and off-Broadway credits include the Tony Award-winning Best Musical Memphis (Music Director/Conductor); Amazing Grace (Orchestrator); The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker (Co-Composer and Lyricist, Orchestrations); The Wiz (Dance Music Arranger); and Hot Feet: The Music of Earth, Wind & Fire (Synth Programmer). Film and TV credits include Fringe (Composer), Talking with the Taxman About Poetry (Composer; recipient of the 2013 Global Music Award for Best Original Score); Music Arranger/Orchestrator for shows on Fox, BET, NBC and the inaugural ball for President Barack Obama. Kenny has performed around the world, from the legendary Apollo Theater and Carnegie Hall to the Montreux Jazz Festival. He studied at Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art, Manhattan School of Music and Berklee College of Music. Back

DEREK MCLANE (Set Designer) last worked at Arena on 33 Variations. His Broadway credits include The Heiress, Nice Work If You Can Get It, The Best Man, Follies, Anything Goes, How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying, Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, Million Dollar Quartet, Ragtime, 33 Variations (Tony Award, Best Scenic Design), Grease, Lestat, Little Women, The Pajama Game, The Threepenny Opera, I Am My Own Wife, The Women, Present Laughter, London Assurance, Holiday and The Three Sisters. Off-Broadway credits include Ruined, Lie of the Mind, Marie and Bruce, Starry Messenger, The Voysey Inheritance, Two Trains Running, Macbeth (Shakespeare in the Park), Hurlyburly, Abigail’s Party and Aunt Dan and Lemon. Derek recently designed the 2013 Oscars and the premiere of the opera Fen Yi Ting at Spoleto Festival/Lincoln Center. His international opera and theater designs have been seen in London, Dublin, Glasgow, Moscow, Krakow, Caracas, Sydney and Warsaw. Honors include 1997 and 2004 Obie Awards; 2004, 2005, 2007 Lucille Lortel Awards; 2009 Tony Award; 2011 Drama Desk Award; and a 2013 Emmy nomination. Back

CLINT RAMOS (Costume Designer) designed sets and costumes for Arena Stage’s production of The Mountaintop last season. Recent set and/or costume designs include The Cradle Will Rock, Violet and I’m Getting My Act Together and Taking It on the Road (NY City Center Encores!); The Good Person of Szechwan, Here Lies Love, Venice and Wild with Happy (Public Theater); and Volpone (Red Bull Theater). His designs have been seen in New York at Playwrights Horizons, Lincoln Center Theater, Roundabout, Second Stage, New York Theater Workshop, Culture Project, Foundry Theatre, Ma-Yi, Mint, NAATCO, New Georges, Clubbed Thumb, Gotham Opera and many others. Regional credits include designs for American Repertory Theater, Alliance Theater, Alley Theater, Asolo Repertory, Berkeley Repertory, Baltimore Centerstage, California Shakespeare Theater, Cleveland Play House, Cincinnati Playhouse, Chautauqua Theater Company, Denver Center Theatre Company, Dallas Theater Center, Folger Theatre, Geva Theater, Huntington Theater, La Jolla Playhouse, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Old Globe Theater, Opera Theater of St. Louis, Opera Boston, Prince Opera Theater, Williamstown Theater Festival, Wilma Theater and many others. Clint has numerous international credits. Honors and awards include the 2013 Obie Award for Sustained Excellence, two Lucille Lortel awards, TDF Irene Sharaff Award and two American Theater Wing Henry Hewes Awards. Back

DAVID LANDER (Lighting Designer) returns to Arena Stage having last designed 33 Variations. His Broadway credits include The Winslow Boy with Roger Rees and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, The Heiress with Jessica Chastain and Dan Stevens, The Lyons with Linda Lavin, Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo with Robin Williams (Drama Desk Award; Tony and Outer Critics nominations), 33 Variations with Jane Fonda (Tony and Outer Critics nominations), I Am My Own Wife (Drama Desk and Outer Critics nominations), Master Class with Tyne Daly, A Man for All Seasons with Frank Langella, Dirty Blonde (Drama Desk nomination) and Golden Child. Off-Broadway credits include Fran’s Bed with Mia Farrow, King Lear with Kevin Kline, Rose with Olympia Dukakis, Macbeth with Liev Schreiber and Jennifer Ehle and Modern Orthodox with Molly Ringwald and Jason Biggs, among others. Regional credits include Ahmanson Theatre, Berkeley Repertory, Goodman Theatre, George Street Playhouse, Huntington Theatre, Kennedy Center, La Jolla Playhouse, Mark Taper Forum and The Old Globe, among others. Internationally his work has been seen in London, Dublin, Caracas, Singapore, Tokyo, Sydney and Melbourne, among others. Back

LINDSAY JONES (Sound Designer) is pleased to return to Arena Stage, after working on productions of The Mountaintop, A Time to Kill, Ruined, Well and Noises Off. His Broadway credits include Bronx Bombers and A Time to Kill. Off-Broadway credits include Mr. Joy (LCT3); Through the Night (Union Square/Westside Theaters); Wild with Happy (Public Theater); The Burnt Part Boys (Playwrights Horizons/Vineyard); Top Secret (NYTW); Rx (Primary Stages) and many others. Regionally, he has designed for theaters such as Guthrie Theater, Hartford Stage, Alliance, Goodman, Chicago Shakespeare, Steppenwolf, Lookingglass and many others. International credits include Stratford Shakespeare Festival (Canada) and Royal Shakespeare Company (England), as well as productions in Austria, Zimbabwe, South Africa and Scotland. Awards include six Joseph Jefferson Awards and 19 nominations, two Ovation Awards and three nominations, LA Drama Critics Circle Award, two ASCAP Plus Awards and three Drama Desk Award nominations, as well as nominations for Henry Hewes Design, Barrymore and many others. Film scoring credits include Magnolia Pictures’ The Brass Teapot and HBO Films’ A Note of Triumph (2006 Academy Award, Best Documentary). Back

JOHN NARUN (Projection Designer) is happy to make his Arena Stage debut. His theater credits include The Laramie Project Cycle (BAM); Radio City Christmas Spectacular (video content) and Cirque Du Soleil’s The Immortal Tour (video content). John’s concert credits include Madonna’s Sticky and Sweet Tour, The Spice Girls’ Reunion Tour, Celine Dion’s Taking Chances Tour, Britney Spears’ The Femme Fatale Tour, Ricky Martin’s The Black and White Tour and Christina Aguilera’s Back to Basics Tour. Regionally his work has been seen at Bailiwick Repertory, Griffin Theatre, Rice University and Marriott’s Lincolnshire Theatre. John’s broadcast designs include NBC Beijing Summer Olympics Teaser Campaign; ABC News Open (2004); The Dr. Phil Show Open (2006); CBS Wolf Lake Main Title (Emmy nomination); HBO Genre Opens (2002); and The Oprah Winfrey Show Open (1999). John attended Northwestern University, where he studied theatrical design and radio/TV/film. Back

CARLYN AQUILINE (Dramaturg) is Literary Manager and Dramaturg at City Theatre Company (Pittsburgh), which specializes in contemporary and new work. A former staff member at Syracuse Stage (Artistic Associate) and Goodspeed Musicals (Literary and Producing Associate), Carlyn’s new play dramaturgy credits also include Kansas City Repertory, LaJolla Playhouse, Yale Repertory Theatre, Hartford Stage, Arden Theatre, Theatre Works (Palo Alto), Florida Stage, Actors’ Express and Lark Play Development Center. Carlyn is also an experienced dramaturg of classical work, including among her favorite projects Ibsen’s Peer Gynt, Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest and Gozzi’s The Green Bird (at Yale Rep, in collaboration with Theatre de la Jeune Lune). She was Managing Editor of Theater magazine for two years, and has adjudicated many national residencies and awards for playwrights, dramaturges and other artists. Teaching credits include Carnegie Mellon, Yale, Ohio and Syracuse Universities. She studied at Yale School of Drama, Ohio University and The Catholic University of America. Back

LYNN WATSON (Dialect Consultant) is delighted to return to Arena Stage, having recently coached Guess Who's Coming to Dinner. She has done voice and dialect work on many Arena Stage productions, including A Time to Kill, A Moon for the Misbegotten, M. Butterfly and The Misanthrope, and has been a voice specialist at leading regional theaters. Other D.C. area productions include The Laramie Project and Parade at Ford’s Theatre, The Glass Menagerie and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof at the Kennedy Center and Neville's Island and The King and I at Olney Theatre. West coast credits include four seasons at South Coast Repertory and critically acclaimed productions of A Streetcar Named Desire at A.C.T. San Francisco and Skylight at the Mark Taper Forum in L.A. She has edited and written for the Voice and Speech Review, and is an associate professor of theater at UMBC. Back

CRAIG CAMPBELL (Production Stage Manager) Off-Broadway credits include I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change; The Vagina Monologues; De La Guarda; Fame; Oedipus; The Pitchfork Disney; Amazing Grace and The Seagull. National Tours include Forever Plaid, All Shook Up, Fame and Dirty Blonde. Regional credits include Picnic (San Pedro Playhouse); The Haunted Hotel, Personals, Vanities (Cazenovia Theatre Company), The Tallest Tree in the Forest (Kansas City Repertory and La Jolla Playhouse) and three seasons with the Santa Fe Opera Company. TV credits include The Amandas, Clean House, So You Think You Can Dance, Over Your Head, Comic Relief and just about every award show on television. Craig is an Emmy Award winner with three nominations. He is a proud graduate of Rollins College, with an emphasis in theater. Love to MKD. Back

ZACH KENNEDY (Assistant Stage Manager) is thrilled to be collaborating with this amazing group of people on The Tallest Tree in the Forest. International credits include The Continuum: Beyond the Killing Fields (Shizuoka, Japan 2012). Off-Broadway credits include The Cherry Orchard Sequel. His regional credits include Old Globe Theater: 2013 Shakespeare Repertory (Merchant of Venice, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead and A Midsummer Night's Dream), The Rocky Horror Show and Somewhere; La Jolla Playhouse: The Tallest Tree in the Forest, Glengarry Glen Ross, Standing on Ceremony and Gala 2012; The Lost Colony: The Lost Colony 2009 and 2010. Zach holds his MFA in Stage Management from UC San Diego. In addition to stage managing he also works as a freelance line producer and content manager for Blue Flame Events, most recently on the Google International Science Fair. Other credits include MSI Events, Seven Devils Playwrights Conference, Pat Rincon Dance Collective, Palmetto Opera Company, South Carolina Arts Council and Theatre South Carolina. Back

MICHAEL D. WARD (Assistant Stage Manager) has been a part of the Arena Stage family since the fall of 2010 (SM Intern Oklahoma!). He has filled various roles at Arena Stage from production assistant to company management. Michael is a graduate of the University of Evansville and is excited to be back on another great Arena Stage production. He thanks everyone who has assisted with his journey. Back

DON GILMORE (Production Manager/Technical Supervisor) has provided technical supervision for over 300 Broadway, regional and commercial projects in the U.S. and abroad. Recent Broadway projects include Guys & Dolls; How the Grinch Stole Christmas; Pirate Queen (Production Carpenter); Dracula, the Musical; and Sinatra. National tours include Judy Garland Live!, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Hair and Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty. Other credits include Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Annex, NYC; and Times Square New Years Eve. Don lives in NYC with his wife, actress Rebecca Holt, and their three children: Luke, Max and Ruby. Back

TECTONIC THEATER PROJECT (TTP), founded in 1991 by Artistic Director Moisés Kaufman, is an award-winning theater company dedicated to developing innovative works that explore theatrical language and form, fostering an artistic dialogue with our audiences on the social, political and human issues that affect us all. Tectonic Theater Project is best known for creating plays, which have sparked national discourse and inspired artists and audiences worldwide. They include Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde; The Laramie Project; The Laramie Project Cycle; I Am My Own Wife, Tennessee Williams’ unproduced screenplay, One Arm; and 33 Variations starring Jane Fonda. Moisés Kaufman and Tectonic Theater Project have developed a wholly unique methodology for creating theater, Moment Work. Participants in Moment Work Trainings actively engage with the elements of the stage — exploring lights, sound, costumes, movement, text, architecture and other elements — to discover their full theatrical potential and the poetry inherent in each element. Training and workshop information is available at Back