CARMEN AGUIRRE – Playwright
Carmen is a core artist of Vancouver’s Electric Company Theatre. She has written and co-written over twenty-five plays, including The Trigger, The Refugee Hotel, Blue Box, and Broken Tailbone. She is adapting Euripides’ Medea for Vancouver’s Rumble Theatre, and Moliere’s The Learned Ladies for Factory Theatre. Carmen is the author of the #1 national bestseller Something Fierce: Memoirs of a Revolutionary Daughter (winner of CBC Canada Reads in 2012), and its bestselling sequel, Mexican Hooker #1 and My Other Roles Since the Revolution. She has won multiple awards for her work, has over eighty stage, film and television acting credits, and is a graduate of Studio 58. www.carmenaguirre.ca
SHAD KABANGO – Rap Co-Creator / Co-Composer
Shadrach Kabango, better known as Shad, is a rapper and the host of Netflix’s Hip Hop Evolution. Currently based in Toronto, Shad was born in Kenya to Rwandan parents and raised in London Ontario. He has released 6 studio albums since 2005. Four of his albums have been shortlisted for the Polaris Music Prize and he won a Juno Award for Rap Recording of the Year in 2011. Shad hosted the radio program “q” on CBC Radio from 2015 to 2016  and currently hosts the International Emmy and Peabody Award-winning documentary series Hip-Hop Evolution on HBO Canada and Netflix.
JULIETTE CARRILLO – Director
A graduate of the Yale School of Drama, Juliette has directed critically acclaimed classic and new play productions including plays at Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Yale Repertory Theater, Mark Taper Forum, Denver Center and Seattle Repertory Theater. She is a recipient of several awards, including the prestigious National Endowment of the Arts/Theatre Communications Group Directing Fellowship and the Princess Grace Award. She was also chosen by Sundance Theater Institute to participate in the Sundance/Luma Foundation Theater Directors’ Retreat in Arles, France. She is thrilled to be collaborating with Carmen Aguirre on two projects, Anywhere But Here and The Refugee Hotel.
JOELYSA PANKANEA – Composer & Music Director
Joelysa Pankanea is a multi-award-winning composer and musical director. Her music has been critically acclaimed and embraced by audiences across Canada for over 20 years. Her prolific body of work, whether for the stage, screen or the concert hall, has given her one of the most unique and compelling musical voices in Canada. In addition to her composing work, she is the owner of SoundBite Audio Branding Inc specializing in audio branding and custom audio logos for businesses. Joelysa is thrilled to be working with the Electric Company on Anywhere But Here and thanks Carmen Aguirre for writing this important work of art.
HEIDI TAYLOR – Dramaturg
Heidi Taylor is a dramaturg, director and performer, and Artistic & Executive Director at PTC, based on the traditional unceded, occupied territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. She makes sited, devised, and interdisciplinary work, developing performances from first idea through production. She recently dramaturged Zahida Rahemtulla’s The Wrong Bashir (VACT/MSG), Chicken Girl by Derek Chan, and Kuroko by Tetsuro Shigematsu. She began dramaturging Anywhere But Here with Carmen as part of PTC’s Associates program in 2014. Heidi is Board Treasurer of the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas (LMDA).
CHRISTOPHER ACEBO – Scenic Designer
Christopher is thrilled to be designing the world premiere of Anywhere But Here. Christopher served as the Associate Artistic Director of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival for 12 seasons and designed over 30 productions. Recent productions of note include directing American Mariachi at Arizona Theater Company and South Coast Rep and Sweat at Profile Theater in Portland. His work has been seen on Broadway in the Tony Award winning play All the Way and all over the country including productions at Center Theatre Group in Los Angeles. Lincoln Center Theatre, Yale Rep, Brooklyn Academy of Music, American Repertory Theater, Berkeley Rep, La Jolla Playhouse, Goodman Theater, Guthrie, Yale Rep, Denver Center, Kennedy Center, South Coast Rep, Portland Center Stage. Christopher was an ensemble member of the nationally acclaimed Cornerstone Theater Company in Los Angeles from 2000-2006. Currently, he serves on the Oregon Arts Commission. He received his MFA from the University of California, San Diego.
CARMEN ALATORRE – Costume Designer
Originally from Mexico City, Carmen earned her MFA degree in Theatre Design at UBC and has worked as a theatre designer in Vancouver since 2006. Some of her recent design credits include: Stickboy (Vancouver Opera); Peter and the star catcher, Top dog/Under dog and Mustard (Arts Club Theatre Co.); Pericles, The Winter’s Tale, As you like it and All’s well that ends well (Bard on the Beach); Carmen is the recipient of three Jessie Richardson Theatre Awards. For more information visit: carmenalatorre.com
ITAI ERDAL – Lighting Designer
An award winning lighting designer, writer and performer, Itai is the artistic director of the Elbow Theatre in Vancouver. Itai has designed over 300 shows for companies all over North America and Europe, winning five Jessie Richardson Awards, the ADC’s Jack King Award, a Dora Mavor Moore Award, Victoria’s Spotlight Choice Award, a Guthrie Award and the Dublin Fringe Design Award. He was shortlisted to the Siminovitch Prize for Design in 2018. Itai’s one-man show How to Disappear Completely (The Chop, directed by James Long) has had 30 remounts in 26 cities and continues to tour nationally and internationally. www.itaierdal.com, www.theelbow.ca
CANDELARIO ANDRADE – Projection Designer
Cande is a video editor and media designer for theatre, dance and performance arts. Recent credits include: Anon(ymous) (Studio58); A X-Mas Miracle Holidayish Show (Arts Club); Awkward Conversations (Neworld Theatre); White Noise (Savage Productions); Pathetic Fallacy (The Chop); Griffin and Sabine (Belfry); Incognito Mode (Studio58/Neworld); Forge
ELI HALIGUA – Sound Designer
Eli was born in Istanbul, a city that is a bridge between the Anatolia and Europe. When he was in university he involved in an independent radio. This led to be hired as the sound technician for many of the radio programs. He collaborated with a French radio to produce sound documentaries about the “invisible” communities of Marseille and Istanbul. He was also the sound designer for radio plays about human rights violations in partnerships with Sweden, Germany, Turkey and Iran. After his experience in radio, Eli switched his focus to the motion picture industry. He worked in every aspect of sound design and audio post production. He has 90+ credits in IMDb including Hollywood projects such as The Grand Budapest Hotel and The Water Diviner. He also worked on films that screened at well-known International film festivals such as Cannes, Venice, Berlinale, Montreal, SXSW and Sitges. In 2016 he shared the 53rd International Antalya Film Festival “Sound Design and Mix” award. He has also two nominations for the Sound Design award in 2017 and for one Best Sound Design nomination from Vancouver in 2019.
PEDRO CHAMALE – Assistant Director
Pedro is a Latinx-Canadian theatre artist from Chetwynd British Columbia. He received his BFA in Theatre Performance from SFU, he then went on to form rice & beans theatre with Derek Chan. Pedro was the Artistic Resident at Neworld Theatre in 2014, the guest curator of the 2018 rEvolver Festival and was one of the playwrights in the 2019 Banff’s Playwright’s Lab with his latest play Made in Canada: an agricultural operetta premiering this May 2020. Pedro is a director, playwright, performer and theatre jack-of-all-trades. Selected Credits: Broken Tailbone (Night Swimming), Selfie, Bull (Rumble Theatre), Chicken Girl, Mis Papás (rice & beans), and Are We There Yet? (Neworld Theatre).
AUGUSTO BITTER – Acting Company
Augusto Bitter is a Venezuelan-born, Dora Award-winning performer, writer, and educator based in Toronto. He is a Resident Artist at Canadian Stage and Aluna Theatre, and has also been in-residence at hub14 and Theatre Passe Muraille. He has trained with Teatro delle Radici (Lugano, Switzerland), Manifesto Poetico (Paris), Canada’s National Voice Intensive, Aluna Theatre’s Interpretation Lab, and the University of Toronto. An educator with Soulpepper, he facilitates creative-writing workshops with youth in under-resourced schools and communities in the GTA with Story Planet. His first creation, CHICHO (Pencil Kit Productions/TPM/Aluna) is gearing up for a national and international tour, and he is developing his second work, Reina, with musician Y Josephine. More at www.augustobitter.com
ALEN DOMINGUEZ – Acting Company
This is Alen’s Electric Company Theatre debut. Acting credits: Berlin: The Last Cabaret (City Opera Vancouver) Coriolanus (Bard on the Beach), Marine Life (Ruby Slippers), Sweat (Arts Club, Citadel) The Audience (Arts Club), Cornwall’s All Inclusive Cancun Christmas (Chemainus), Rent (URP), West Side Story (TUTS), The Dining Room (Western Gold), The Idiot (Neworld). BFA in Acting from UBC, proud member of the Canadian Latinx Theatre Artist Coalition, caltac.ca, Executive Producer for Royal City Musical Theatre. Upcoming: Henry V, Midsummer Night’s Dream (Bard on the Beach). I joined this project early on in its creation phase and it’s been a beautiful journey. Thanks to Carmen, Juliette, Heidi, Clayton, Joelysa and Shad for getting us here. Agradecido con la vida por esta oportunidad tan especial.
ALEXANDRA LAINFIESTA – Acting Company
Alexandra está muy agradecida con Carmen y Electric Company por esta hermosa oportunidad. Born and raised in Guatemala, Alexandra moved to Canada in 2010 to pursue professional theatre training. She’s a graduate of the Canadian College of Performing Arts and Studio 58. Alexandra is the recipient of the 2015 Sydney J. Risk and Studio 58 Acting Award and the 2017 Jessie Richardson Award for Best Performance in a Lead Role for Green Lake with Solo Collective Theatre. Alexandra has spent the last two years at The Stratford Festival where she was recently nominated by her peers for a Tanya Moiseiwitsch Award. Up next, you can catch Alexandra in All’s Well That Ends Well, Richard III, and The Miser at the Stratford Festival.
SHAWN LALL – Acting Company
Originally from Caracas, Venezuela, Shawn is a Toronto-based actor and graduate of Humber College. Over the past year, he’s completed Factory Theatre’s Mechanicals program, made his directorial debut with The Stand (2019 InspiraTO Festival), and made his professional stage debut as Amir Kapoor in Ayad Akhtar’s Disgraced (Alberta Theatre Projects). Other recent credits include Titus Andronicus (Hart House Theatre), Carmilla (2019 Toronto Fringe), and the staged reading of Anusree Roy’s Trident Moon (Stratford Festival). Shawn is thrilled to join the Anywhere But Here team; honoured to bring this funny, touching, poignant tale to life; and filled with profound gratitude to everyone involved with the production, to the staff at Electric Company Theatre, to his friends, his family, and to Rae.
NADEEM PHILLIP – Acting Company
Nadeem Phillip attended Ryerson Theatre School, where he was trained by Ian Watson of the Stratford Conservatory, and Dr. Cynthia Ashperger of the Michael Chekhov Association. His career spans a decade, in Theatre, Film, and Television. Noteworthy credits include the world premiere of the smash hit Beatles musical adaptation of Shakespeare’s As You Like It, and the national tour of the award-winning Canadian musical Onegin. Nadeem is directing his focus towards culturally relevant work, striving to add non-colonial content to the Canadian theatre milieu. This summer, you can see Nadeem perform The Mahabharata at The Shaw Festival. Nadeem currently resides on the land rightfully belonging to the Haudenosaunee, Huron-Wendat, and Anishnaabe, and is privileged to perform here on the land taken from the Musqueam, Stz’uminus, Stó:lō, Skwxwú7mesh-ulh Temíx̱w, Tsleil-Waututh. It’s an honor to perform this show, with this company, at this time. May all the walls between us come down.
CHRISTINE QUINTANA – Acting Company
Born in Los Angeles to a Mexican-American father and a Dutch-British-Canadian mother, Christine is now a grateful visitor to the Unceded Coast Salish Territories. As an actor, Christine has recently played in The Coyotes (Caravan Farm Theatre), Marine Life (Ruby Slippers Theatre), Yoga Play (Gateway Theatre), East Van Panto (Theatre Replacement and The Cultch). Playwriting highlights include Delinquent Theatre’s Never The Last (co-created with Molly MacKinnon) winner of a Significant Artistic Achievement Award, and Selfie (commissioned by YPT in Toronto), winner of a Dora Award for Outstanding TYA Play, and the Sydney Risk Prize for Outstanding Script. Christine is a Siminovitch Protégée Prize winner for playwriting, and is currently Playwright in Residence at Tarragon Theatre. She is a proud founding member of the Canadian Latinx Theatre Artist Coalition, and holds a BFA in Acting from UBC.
MICHELLE RIOS – Acting Company
Theatrical credits include the Tony-Award nominated Broadway productions of The Capeman, The Sound of Music, Man of La Mancha, and the Tony Award Winner for Best Musical In the Heights. Off-Broadway and Regional (U.S./Canadian) include: INTAR, NYS&F, La MaMa, ETC., Public Theatre, Lincoln Center, Kennedy Center, Signature Theatre, Portland Stage, Sundance Theatre Lab, Workshop West, Citadel Theatre, etc. Film/TV credits include: Law & Order, Third Watch, Dirt, Frontera, Dead Again in Tombstone, etc. Ms. Rios has performed alongside Lin Manuel Miranda, Paul Simon, Marc Anthony, Ruben Blades, and Academy Award nominee Ed Harris, among others.
In 2018, she received a Helen Hayes Award nomination for her portrayal of “Abuela Claudia” in the U.S. Spanish premiere of In the Heights. www.mmrios.com
AJ SIMMONS – Acting Company
Known for her fierce determination and brazenly unapologetic heart, AJ Simmons is a queer mestiza actor, writer, and filmmaker. The daughter of a transracial adoptee and a refugee, she is grateful to be living, breathing and working on the unceded, ancestral, and occupied, traditional lands of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Səl̓ílwətaʔ (Tsleil-Watuth), and Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) Nations. With a diverse foundation in classical theatre and dance, AJ’s passion for storytelling is infused with a layered complexity. For the stage, AJ has collaborated with Electric Company, Pacific, Factory, Pleiades, Young People’s Theatre, Roseneath, Aluna, and Alameda Theatre. AJ also explores her intersectionality through Flamenco and is a member of Flamenco Rosario’s Professional Training Program 2019/20. She trains concurrently with Oscar Nieto and Kasandra ‘La China’ of Mozaico Flamenco. As an emerging filmmaker AJ has written, produced and directed several short films which have screened at festivals across Canada and the United States. Most recently her short film ‘Yasmina’ was awarded a Storyhive grant, and was released and broadcast in cooperation with Telus and NSICanada. @JeniferAleja_S
MANUELA SOSA – Acting Company
Manuela is a trilingual performer based between Vancouver and New York City. As a Venezuelan-American who grew up studying French in Canada, she embraces her own cultural complexity and celebrates nuanced identities in the diverse characters she embodies. Manuela is trained in classical and contemporary acting and her interests in dramaturgy have led her to work internationally with playwrights, directors and choreographers to devise and develop new plays. Past collaborators include Rice&Beans Theatre, Theatre Elsewhere, The Troika Collective, Elysse Cheadle, Leaky Heaven Circus, MouthRadio, Classic Theatre of Harlem, The Young Company, Theatre In Asylum, and The Hong Kong Dance Alliance. Manuela holds a BFA from Simon Fraser University in French and Theatre, and an MFA in Acting from Columbia University.
Theatrical credits include the Tony-Award nominated Broadway productions of The Capeman, The Sound of Music, Man of La Mancha, and the Tony Award Winner for Best Musical In the Heights. Off-Broadway and Regional (U.S./Canadian) include: INTAR, NYS&F, La MaMa, ETC., Public Theatre, Lincoln Center, Kennedy Center, Signature Theatre, Portland Stage, Sundance Theatre Lab, Workshop West, Citadel Theatre, etc. Film/TV credits include: Law & Order, Third Watch, Dirt, Frontera, Dead Again in Tombstone, etc. Ms. Rios has performed alongside Lin Manuel Miranda, Paul Simon, Marc Anthony, Ruben Blades, Lila Downs, and Academy Award nominee Ed Harris, among others. In 2018, she received a Helen Hayes Award nomination for her portrayal of “Abuela Claudia” in the U.S. Spanish premiere of In the Heights. www.mmrios.com