Addams Family Bios
Jared is thrilled to make his OSP debut! The Addams Family production marks his return to the stage after a long hiatus due to the pandemic. Jared is grateful to Brandon for believing in him as Gomez, the patriarch of the kooky, spooky Addams Family. He also appreciates the production's welcoming cast and crew for keeping theatre alive and well in the 'Burgh. Lastly, Jared would like to give a shoutout to his family, friends, and supportive boyfriend for always encouraging him. When not performing you can catch Jared hosting weekly WEDNESDAY trivia at 1700 Penn in the Strip District. Love & light! And, of course, Snap, Snap!
Harlem Renaissance Ancestor
DeJaun Cox is thrilled to make his first-ever theater debut with The Addams Family. Dejaun is filled with endless gratitude that Brandon welcomed him into the ensemble of such an amazing cast. He would love to give thanks to his family, friends, and incredible boyfriend for being the best support system. Additionally, DeJaun created music under the moniker "jGGZ PATEL." He is using his new experience such as theater and musicals to draw influence and inspiration for new music in the future. Stay blessed and never stressed.
This is Debbie's 20th Season with OSP. A few of her favorite roles include Mrs. Bailey in It's a Wonderful LIfe, Mrs. Gloop Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, Mama Bear/Bluebird in Shrek, Mrs. Higgins My Fair Lady, Lady Beaconsfield in Jekyll & Hyde, Mrs. Sowerberry in Oliver!, Lulu in Footloose, and Sister Margaretta in The Sound of Music. She also has sewn costumes. Debbie is the director for Avella HS. She is grateful for the support of her family. Even though her character is 102, Brandon and this cast make her feel young!
Autumn is currently a sophomore musical theatre major at Lincoln Park Performing Arts Charter School. Her favorite roles include ensemble member in Disney's Descendants (LPPAC). Zeke/Lion in The Wizard of Oz (McGuffey High School), and The Mad Hatter in Dorothy in Wonderland (WCT). Autumn would like to thank her friends, family, and cast for all the endless love and support throughout this whole process, and she hopes you enjoy the show!
Katie is thrilled to be making her debut at OSP and return to the stage (Full Disclosure!) Pre-pandemic, recent shows include Princess Natalia in The Frog Princess , Ethel McCormack in Footloose, and Wife/Angel Soloist in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Thanks to the cast and crew for bringing this show from death to life!
Sara is a pre-law major at LPPAC. SHe has done previous shows at OSP including Fern in Charlotte;s Web, an Oompa Loompa in Willy Wonka, and Baby Bear & Dulac Dancer in Shrek. Additionally, she's been Tigger in House at Pooh Corner (Bookhill Players), and a Who in Pittsburgh CLO's Seussical Jr. She can also be heard as a background singer on Nickelodeon's Ryan's Mystery Playdate Theme Song. Sara is excited to be back on stage with her OSP family! Enjoy the show!
"A relative newcomer to theatre", Josh is excited to be making his debut with OSP. He has previously performed in productions of Elf, Working, Little Women and Clue. He appreciates how welcoming the community is, and looks forward to honing his skills in the coming years.
Deanna Lesso is a member at OSP and is thrilled to be back on stage for The Addams Family. When Deanna is not on stage, she is a devoted employee at the Select Medical business office in Canonsburg. Previous roles include Ursula in The Little Mermaid, Wilbur in Charlotte's Web, and Gingy in Shrek.
is a freshman musical theater major at LPPAC and is thrilled to be a part of this fantastic cast of actors. She has been in the cast of Working and Into the Woods at her school. This is her first performance with OSP and she is hoping to be a part of many more shows with these amazing people. She would like to thank everyone involved for making her feel welcome, and especially her family for all their love, support, and encouragement. Enjoy the show!
Amanda graduated from West Liberty University with a BA in Theatre. She is very excited to be making her OSP debut! This is her first production since the pandemic started and Amanda is beyond grateful to have had such a great experience.
Brandon Keller is thrilled to be making his directorial debut here at OSP. Previously, you may have seen him in The Old Schoolhouse’s productions of Almost Maine (Dave) and Beauty and the Beast (Gaston). Brandon has worked with both community and regional theaters across the Pittsburgh area. His previous directing credits include Elf the Musical, Legally Blonde, Wedding Singer, and Peter Pan Jr.
He wishes to thank the entire board of The Old Schoolhouse Players and his friends Brian and Carina for aiding him through this production. He hopes you enjoy this halfway to Halloween production of The Addams Family performed by this extraordinary and spooky cast and crew.
Co-wrote Jersey Boys (winner 2006 Tony Award, 2007 Grammy Award and 2009 Olivier Award for Best Musical) with Marshall Brickman. His play, Peter and the Starcatcher, received nine 2012 Tony Award nominations (including two for Rick) and won five, more than any play of the season. It’s currently playing in New York and on tour across North America. Also on Broadway, Elice wrote The Addams Family (with Marshall Brickman, music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa), currently touring North America, with productions in Europe and South America. In 2014, the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego presented the world premiere of his new musical, Dog and Pony (music and lyrics by Michael Patrick Walker). Rick is currently writing a musical for Disney Theatricals with Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, based on the film Make Believe, and Super Fly (co-written with Seth Zvi Rosenfeld), directed and choreographed by modern dance legend, Bill T. Jones. Heartfelt thanks to those whose work in the theatre makes him grateful for the day he was born: Sondheim, Stoppard, Bennett, Prince, Fosse, Robbins, Nichols, Tune, Nunn, Laurents, Stone, Kushner, Taymor, Papp, Schumacher, Schneider, Coyne, Brickman, Timbers and Rees. Rick thinks about them a lot. He never thought about Jersey much. He does now.
Victoria is an alumna of Robert Morris University with a BA in Communication/Theatre, and an MBA in Human Resource Management from Strayer University. A few of Victoria's favorite roles include Bonnie Parker in Bonnie & Clyde, Veronica Sawyer in Heathers, Wendla Bergman in Spring Awakening, Velma Kelly in Chicago, and Violet Hilton in Side Show. She played Rosaline in the musical adaptation of Love Labour's Lost, a performance that earned her the 'Distinguished Performance by an Actress in a Musical' award from KCACTF. Victoria thanks her family and friends for always being supportive, and thanks Peepa for this "mysterious and spooky" opportunity!
This is Maame's OSP debut, but she is not new to performing. Maame has a bachelor's degree in vocal performance. She specializes in gospel, classical, musical theater, and contemporary musical styles. Maame is originally from the DC metro area where she has featured her original music. Now she resides in Pittsburgh, PA where she is completing her MBA online and is excited to be branching out into the local musical theater community.
Randy is happy to be back on the OSP stage. He is especially excited to have another go round with the moon as Uncle Fester. He is equally excited to be working with such an amazing cast and crew! Some favorite roles (besides Festy) include Lenny in Rumors, Mack in Fruitcakes, Bob Cratchet in A Musical Christmas Carol and Caliban in The Tempest. Randy has worked with many local and regional theaters and will be hoping right into Mama Mia in May. As always, Randy would like to thank his family for their love, support and understanding, "Sorry, I can't, I have rehearsal." Love ya to the moon!
This is Brent’s first show at Old Schoolhouse Players, and he’s beyond excited to be playing Lurch! Lurch is such a powerful part, the words that come out of his mouth throughout this show are by far some of the most elegant you will ever hear in a production. Brent has been in quite a few shows, but who cares about that. The fun fact you would want to hear is that this is Brent’s third time performing in The Addams Family Musical. Previously, he has played Pugsley Addams in High school, Mal Beineke in college, and now Lurch. Brent would like to thank the town of Hickory for having some of the best views of grass and trees that he’s ever seen. Also, if his dancing isn’t the best, please understand that he isn’t used to wearing shoes that make him 4 inches taller. Okay, with that being said, sit back, relax, and enjoy this wonderful show.
Saloon Girl Ancestor
Kelsey is excited to make her OSP debut in The Addams Family Musical! Kelsey lives in the North Hills of Pittsburgh with her husband, Jeff, and three rescue pets. Kelsey has been performing since she was a child, some favorite past roles include Julia in The Wedding Singer, Philia in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, and Ado Annie in Oklahoma.
Carley is very excited for her debut performance at OSP. Her recent credits include Kate in Legally Blonde and the store manager in Elf at Comtra Theater. She is thrilled to be part of this extremely talented cast and hopes you enjoy the show!
Pirate Ancestor & Choreographer
Maddie is thrilled to be doing her first OSP Musical! She feels very lucky to perform with such a talented cast and is so thankful for their patience as she works for the first time as a choreographer. Some of her favorite show credits include Ring Around the Moon, The Importance of Being Earnest, Harvey, Almost, Maine, Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, Addams Family, Drowsy Chaperone, Big Fish, and Legally Blonde. She thanks her friends and family for their unconditional love and support. Enjoy the show!
This is Palmer's first show at OSP and he is so excited to be sharing the stage with this cast! He has been seen at the Comtra Theater where his roles have included Nikos Legally Blonde, and Ernst in Spring Awakening. Other roles include Will American Idiot, Berger Hair, Benny RENT, and Dean All Shook Up. You can follow his Instagram @tropical_palm!
Kristin is thrilled to be making her OSP debut! Kristin has been seen on community and professional stages all over the Greater Pittsburgh area. Some favorite credits include: Paulette in Legally Blonde, Mary in Jesus Christ Superstar, Elizabeth Bennett in Young Frankenstein, Jenny Steinberg in It Should've Been You, and Betty Jean Reynolds in The Marvelous Wonderettes. Kristin would like to thank Brandon for the opportunity to check another role off of her bucket list, as well as her wonderful friends and family for their love and support.
Kendra is excited to be performing with the wonderful cast of The Addams Family. Her previous credits include Elf, Legally Blonde, Big Fish, Flora the Red Menace, The Full Monty, and Gypsy. She would like to thank her family and friends for all of their support.
Marshall Brickman, born in Brazil of American parents, attended New York public schools and the University of Wisconsin, where he received a double baccalaureate in both science and music. He entered show business first as a member of the folk group The Tarriers and then, along with John and Michelle Phillips, as one of The New Journeymen, a precursor of The Mamas and the Papas, whose flamboyant life-style and eccentric harmonies defined the post-folk era of tuning up, turning on and cashing in. Trading in his Gibson Mastertone 5-string banjo for an IBM Selectric, he secured a position as writer/director on Candid Camera, America’s original reality show, a wildly successful early experiment in monetizing public humiliation, for which he hereby apologizes. Fleeing Candid Camera, Brickman found solace as head writer for Johnny Carson, whose late-night show on NBC emanated from ironically named Radio City in midtown Manhattan, a stroke of luck that allowed him to stay as far from Los Angles as possible while still retaining U.S. citizenship. In 1970 he left NBC to become producer/head writer of Dick Cavett’s late-night show on ABC. Among the many ground-breaking events that Cavett introduced into the late-night formula was the night presidential hopeful George McGovern was interviewed by last-minute guest host Bill Russell of the Boston Celtics. The result was fascinating, not unlike watching a python ingesting a small cow.
In the meantime he had started a collaboration with Woody Allen, a young comic who opened for the Tarriers at Fred Weintraub’s Bitter End, the legendary Bleeker Street coffee house that provided exposure to upcoming talent in music and comedy. They worked at odd hours on screenplays and material for Allen’s early TV appearances, an experience like no other. Brickman watched Mr. Allen negotiate both the creative and practical issues confronting an artist working in a commercial environment; he learned things that can’t be taught and never laughed as hard as the time spent roaming the city with a certified genius discussing art, politics, women, the state of the business, and why Durwood Kirby was considered funny, even by people with college degrees.
Mr. Brickman’s film work as author (or co-author with Woody Allen) includes Sleeper, Annie Hall (Academy Award), Manhattan, (AA nomination) and Manhattan Murder Mystery. As film writer/director): Simon, Lovesick, The Manhattan Project, Sister Mary Explains it All. In television: The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson (head writer, 1967-’70); The Dick Cavett Show (head writer/co-producer, 1970-’72).
Brickman’s recording (with ex-Tarrier Eric Weissberg) of the soundtrack of Deliverance, released in 1970, contained the surprise hit “Dueling Banjos,” achieved platinum status, and remains a healthy seller over 40 years later. His first foray into musical theater resulted in Jersey Boys, which won the Tony, Olivier, Helpmann, Grammy and many other awards worldwide, is in its twelfth year on Broadway, has been seen by twenty million people worldwide and is currently the 10th-longest running show in the history of Broadway. The film version of the show was directed by Clint Eastwood. Mr. Brickman’s other theatrical efforts include “Turn of the Century,” which played to capacity houses in Chicago, and “The Addams Family,” starring Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth, which ran for two years on Broadway and to date has had over four thousand first and second tier productions internationally. In addition to his work in film and theater, Mr. Brickman has published in The New York Times, The New Yorker, Playboy and other periodicals. He is the 2006 recipient of the Writers’ Guild of America Ian McClellan Hunter Award for Lifetime Achievement. His current project is a stage musical celebrating the life of western star Roy Rogers, scheduled to premiere late in 2017. After over 40 years in the business, trying to balance talent with opportunity and watching the careers of colleagues, both successful and less so, he can reduce what he’s learned into one succinct bit of wisdom: above all, it’s important to be lucky.
Music & Lyrics
ANDREW LIPPA’s new epic choral work “Unbreakable” had its world premiere with The San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus on June 22nd and 23rd, 2018 in San Francisco with 300 artists onstage including Mr. Lippa. Ten more choruses across the country will present this new work in the next year and the original cast recording, produced by legendary producer Leslie Ann Jones, will be released by Ghostlight Records in November, 2018. He conducted the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in a new production of his “A Little Princess” in concert in London at the Royal Festival Hall in May, 2018 to a sold-out crowd of nearly 3,000 people.
His hit song “Evil Like Me” appears in Disney’s “Descendants”. Written for Kristin Chenoweth that soundtrack hit #1 on the “Billboard 200” album chart, #1 on the iTunes and Billboard soundtrack charts, has been viewed over 70 million times on YouTube and “Evil Like Me” was certified gold in 2017. On Feb. 1st, 2017, Lippa opened the new season of The American Songbook Series at Lincoln Center with his sold out concert of “Andrew Lippa and Friends.” In 2016, he composed and conducted a world premiere piece for the international piano virtuoso Lang Lang and the Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra in Guangzhou, China. This new work, a 32-minute, 5-movement piece called “Rising Tide”, was reprised later in 2016 and recorded in China. Lippa’s epic Concept Opera “I am Anne Hutchinson/I Am Harvey Milk” had its world premiere at The Music Center at Strathmore in April of 2016 starring Kristin Chenoweth as Anne Hutchinson and Mr. Lippa as Harvey Milk. Summer 2016 saw the US premiere of “Life of the Party” – a musical compendium of Mr. Lippa’s career – produced by Theatreworks in Mountain View, CA and starring Mr. Lippa. Summer of 2017, Bay Street Theater in Sag Harbor, NY, presented the world premiere of The Man in the Ceiling. Based on Jules Feiffer’s award-winning novel, this musical features a book by Mr. Feiffer and music and lyrics by Mr. Lippa. Directed by Jeffrey Seller (Tony-winning producer of “Hamilton”) Mr. Lippa played the role of Uncle Lester in this production.
Broadway credits include: Music and lyrics for Big Fish directed and choreographed by Susan Stroman; the Tony-nominated music and lyrics for the Broadway musical The Addams Family (directed by Jerry Zaks) as well as the music for Aaron Sorkin’s Broadway play The Farnsworth Invention (directed by Des McAnuff). Other musicals include the Drama Desk award winning musical The Wild Party (book/music/lyrics); A Little Princess (music); john & jen (music/book); Asphalt Beach (music and lyrics); and You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown (additional music/lyrics and arrangements). His epic oratorio for men’s chorus, orchestra and soloists, I Am Harvey Milk has seen over 30 productions including Disney Hall and Lincoln Center. Awards: Tony and Grammy nominations; shared Emmy for Nickelodeon’s “The Wonder Pets”; SFGMC Vanguard Award; The Gilman/Gonzalez-Falla Theater Foundation Award; ASCAP’s Richard Rodgers/New Horizons Award; The Drama Desk Award; The Outer Critics Circle Award. A graduate of the University of Michigan, Mr. Lippa serves as president of the board of The Dramatists Guild Foundation (dgf.org). He was born in Leeds, England, grew up in suburban Detroit and is an ordained Interfaith minister. andrewlippa.com