April 6 - May 6, 2007

Conceived and Directed By Lear deBessonet
Text by Bathsheba Doran, Charles Mee, Erin Sax Seymour, Russell Shorto, Joan of Arc, and Henrik Ibsen

Transfigures, a new play conceived and directed by Lear deBessonet, created from sources as varied as the writings of Bathsheba Doran and Joan of Arc, scientific journals, and post-it notes from the desks of New York corporate secretaries, Transfigures maps the intersection of religious revelation and insanity as it follows pilgrims to the Holy Land who succumb to the Jerusalem Syndrome, a well-documented psychosis that affects ordinary tourists who find themselves channeling Biblical figures, stealing hotel bed sheets to wear as togas, and parading through Jerusalem as Moses, Mary Magdalene, Jesus, and other religious icons.

Lear deBessonet

(Creator and Director) The founder and artistic director of Stillpoint Productions, has assisted Martha Clarke, Anne Bogart, and Marianne Weems and was recently featured in Time Out New York’s “25 People to watch 2006.” New York devising/directing credits include Bone Protraits (Walkerspace), Death Might Be Your Santa Claus (a site-specific work performed at an abandoned bank next to the NY Stock Exchange), Flying on the Wing (NY Fringe, Outstanding Solo Show), The Eliots (Center Stage), transFigures (Calvary Church), The Female Terrorist Project (HERE Arts Center, American Living Room), L’Histoire du Canard (NYU Graduate Acting Freeplay), Equus (Hangar Theatre), Whisky Girl (Hangar Theatre), and A Short Time After (by Caridad Svich, Six Nights). Internationally, Lear directed a new tri-lingual musical for the National Opera Theatre of Kazakhstan (In the Dark Ages), and a workshop of Revisions in Dublin. She has trained with DAH Theater of Yugoslavia and the SITI Company and was co-director of the Collaborative Theatre Intensive with The International WOW Company. She is a member of the Women’s Project Directors Lab and an alumnus of the Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab, a Drama League Directing Fellow, and a Jefferson Scholar. Most recently, she created the TICKETS FOR THE PEOPLE program at the Culture Project, and her next project will be Brecht’s Saint Joan of the Stockyards at PS122 in June 2007.

Bathsheba Doran

(Writer) Plays include Living Room in Africa (off-Broadway) 2 Soldiers (various, published), The Parents’ Evening (Cherry Lane) Until Morning (BBC Radio 4) and adaptations of Maeterlinck’s The Blind (CSC), Peer Gynt (dir. Andre Serban) and Great Expectations (off-broadway with Kathleen Chalfant at the Lucille Lortel) Her new play Nest opens at at Signature Theater in in DC this spring. Doran was born in the UK, but moved permanently to the States on a Fulbright scholarship in 2000. She is the recipient of three Lecomte du Nouy Lincoln Center playwriting awards, and her work has been developed by the O’Neill Playwrights Center, the McCarter Theatre, and Sundance among others. She is a former playwriting fellow at Juilliard. She has worked as a comedy writer for VH1, BBC TV and radio and The Cambridge Footlights.  She is currently under commission from Atlantic Theater.

Russell Shorto

(Writer) is a contributing writer at the New York Times Magazine, and the author of two previous books: Gospel Truth, about the search for the historical Jesus, and Saints and Madmen, about psychiatry and religion. The hub of his research forThe Island at the Center of the Worldwas the New Netherland Project at the New York State Library, where the archives of the Dutch colony centered on Manhattan are being translated. He lives in New York’s Hudson Valley with his wife and their two daughters.

Erin Sax Seymour

(Writer) is an award winning writer/director/producer who has spent the better part of her adult life documenting the far reaches of society, both emotionally and culturally. From the Middle East, to Europe to the United States, subjects in her films range from an examination of American attitudes towards death and dying (by looking at American rituals of embalming, dressing and casketing the dead)…to the inner workings of the Texas Prison System. She is the recipient of numerous grants including most recently the National Endowment for the Arts Grant, a Texas National Endowment for the Humanities Grant, an Israeli Cultural Arts Grant and the Belgium Production Foundation. Her films have been screened at film festivals around the world, as well as broadcast both in Europe and the Middle East. She has lectured on her work both as a panelist for conferences, as well as a visiting artist for institutions such as The Chicago Art Institute and the University of Colorado at Boulder. In 2000 her film Jerusalem Syndrome received the Grand Prize at the World Religion Festival in Italy and has been the subject of numerous articles, school courses and most recently and a play. See Jerusalem Syndrome and meet Erin Sax Seymour on Saturday, May 5th at 5:00 p.m.

Andrea Haenggi

(Choreographer) New York-based Swiss-born choreographer, visual artist, and dancer Andrea Haenggi is the Founder/Artistic Director of the dance company AMDaT. Haenggi creates thought-­provoking works that cross boundaries between art disciplines to find new possibilities of presentation in theaters and nontraditional sites. Her work has been presented and commissioned in many diverse venues, from Dance Theater Workshop to MASS MoCA to an abandoned Cigar Store in Lower Manhattan to the lobbies and public spaces of the World Financial Center in Downtown Manhattan. AMDaT has toured internationally and Haenggi has given master classes/workshops in Switzerland, Canada and Russia. Find out more about her & her projects at

David Adkins

(Bill): New York: National Actor’s Theater: St.Joan; Manhattan Theater Club: Boy Gets Girl; Primary Stages: Sabina, Aquila: Agamemnon. Regional: Center Stage: Three Sisters, Blythe Spirit, King Lear, Ideal Husband, Goodman: Boy Gets Girl, Old Globe: Time Flies; Long Warf: Going Native; ACT (San Francisco): Colossus of Rhodes, Misanthrope; George St. Playhouse: Walk in the Woods; Kennedy Center: Darker Face of the Earth; Berkshire Theater Festival (eleven seasons); Law & Order; SVU; The Soaps; Pilot: BlaqJaq (dir. Forest Whitaker); Ben Franklin (PBS).

Dylan Dawson

(Joshua) has performed in Minneapolis with The Illusion Theatre, The Children’s Theatre, Great American History Theatre, among others. Recent New York credits include SIXTEEN WOUNDED (off-Broadway premiere) at the Cherry Lane Alternative, Steven Drukman’s FOXHOLLOW at NYU, and OFFStage: The West Village Fragments with Peculiar Works. As a writer, his play MOVIE GEEK (in which he also performs) has been seen at FringeNYC (award winner: Outstanding Multimedia Production), the Culture Project, and Ars Nova. He has a BFA in Drama at NYU.

Juliana Francis

(Margaret 1/Joan) Off-B’way/Intl.: SONGS OF THE DRAGONS FLYING TO HEAVEN (dir. Young Jean Lee); FRAGMENT (CSC, dir. Pavol Liska); SVEJK (TFANA, dir. Dalia Ibelhauptaite); four plays for Richard Foreman (OBIE Award for MARIA DEL BOSCO.)  Founding member of the late Reza Abdoh’s DAR A LUZ.  Her own plays have been produced and published internationally, and she writes for Killer Films.  FILM & TV: THE GIRL FROM MONDAY; SEX AND THE CITY; Marie Losier & Guy Maddin’s upcoming MANUELLE LABOR.

Nate Schenkkan

(Victor/Margaret 2) collaborates for the stage as an actor and dancer.  Recent work: Betrothed (Ripe Time/Ohio Theater), Death in Vacant Lot! (The South Wing/LMCC), Without (Moving Theater/Dance New Amsterdam), HOWL (The TEAM), The Eliots (Stillpoint Productions), 131 (Kathryn Profeta/PS122) The Blind Watchmaker (Bug Theater, Denver), transFigures (Stillpoint Productions), The Failure of Things: Nietzsche/Orestes (Yale School of Drama Cabaret).  He holds a BA in Political Science from Yale University.

T. Ryder Smith

(Gene/John Salvi) Some NY credits: MARAT/SADE (Classical Theatre of  Harlem), Will Eno’s THOM PAIN (DR2), Anne Washburn’s APPARITION (Soho Rep, Chashama, Connolly), and I HAVE LOVED STRANGERS (Clubbed Thumb), Richard Foreman’s THE GODS ARE POUNDING MY HEAD, and KING COWBOY RUFUS RULES THE UNIVERSE, (Ontological), David Greenspan’s SHE STOOPS TO COMEDY (Playwright’s Horizons), Mae West’s SEX (Hourglass Group), and Glen Berger’s THE WOODEN BREEKS (MCC), and UNDERNEATH THE LINTEL (Soho Playhouse), for which T. received a Drama Desk nomination as Outstanding Solo Performer. Regional: the premiere productions of John Strand’s LINCOLNESQUE (Old Globe), (Winner, Outstanding Lead Performance, San Diego Critic’s Circle), Charles Mee’s BIG LOVE (Humana Festival), and Jeffrey Hatcher’s STAGE BEAUTY (CATF), among others. Film and TV: THE VENTURE BROTHERS, CONVICTION, LAW & ORDER, the cult film BRAINSCAN, and the upcoming experimental feature HORRIBLE CHILD.

Marguerite Stimpson

(Susan) Broadway:  Butley, directed by NicholasMartinRegionally: Pericles at the Shakespeare Theatre and the Goodman Theatre, (director- Mary Zimmerman), Butley  (Huntington Theatre),  Antigone  and Idiots Karamazov (u.s.) (American Repertory Theatre), Romeo and Juliet, The Play About the Baby, Proof, The Diary of Anne Frank , and Closer (Hippodrome State Theatre), Apple Cove (Todd Mountain Theatre Project). New York: Apple Cove (Lark Theatre), premiere of Neal Bell’s Time/ Unstuck  (E.S.T.), One Hit Wonder (NY Fringe Festival)  Film/TV: Ed and Going Under.  M.F.A.: A.R.T.


Jenny Sawyers

(Scenic Designer) is very excited to be working with the Women’s Project in the capacity of scenic designer for the first time.  Jenny has been working as a scenic designer and associate scenic designer in New York City for the past 4 years.  She is the associate scenic designer to Santo Loquasto on 3 Broadway shows opening this spring Inherit the Wind, Prelude to a Kiss and 110 in the Shade.

Clint Ramos

(Costume Designer) designs scenery and costumes for opera, theater, dance and film. Recent credits include Taming of the Shrew (Dallas Theater Center).Ah Wilderness!! (Baltimore Centerstage), Madras House (Mint Theater), Romania.Kiss Me! (The Play Company), The Onion Cellar (American Repertory Theater), Aunt Dan and Lemon (Merrimack Repertory Theater), Resist/Surrender (Risa Jaroslow and Dancers,) Angels in America ( sets & costumes/Opera Boston), Susan and God (Mint Theater), Trial By Water (sets & costumes/Ma-Yi Theater), Little Willy (sets and costumes/Rude Mechanicals). Other credits : And God Created Great Whales (Foundry Theater / Culture Project), References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot (Public Theater). Regional : American Repertory Theater, Dallas Theater Center, Baltimore Center Stage, Commonwealth Shakespeare Co., Georgetown Davis Center for the Performing Arts, Opera Boston, Opera Theater of St. Louis, East West Players, Merrimack Repertory, Speakeasy Stage & others. International: DeNederlandse Opera(Amsterdam), Noorland Oper(Stockholm), Stuttgarter Ballet, Kannon Dance (St. Petersburg) Barbican (London) Teatro Pilipino (Manila) and others. Upcoming : transFigures (Women’s Project), The House of Bernarda Alba (NAATCO), The Return of the Prodigal (Mint Theater). Awards: NYTW Design Fellowship, 2 IRNE Nominations, 1 Audelco Nomination, Gary Kalkin Memorial Award and Live Design Magazine’s 2007 List of Designer’s to Watch.

Ryan Mueller

(Lighting Designer) Designs: Off-Broadway: Ahraihsak, Top Gun! The Musical, Black Codes from the Underground & The Hologram Theory. Regional:  Raven Odyssey, Dhammashok, Ramayana, Mahabharata, Odyssey, Two Sisters & a Piano, Delicate Balance, Victor/Victoria, Footloose, Evita & Sound of Music.  National/International Tours: Swan Lake, Nutcracker, Grand Night for Singing, Les Cenci & the educational program “Bangkok Artist Intensive” in Thailand. Producers: Alaska’s Perseverance Theatre, Lincoln Center, Mark Taper, Alliance, NYMF, Russian National Ballet, Edinburgh Festival, Theatre La Lune (France). In addition to producing & designing; Ryan’s Photography can also be seen around the country including his 14 years of Theater Production Shots and his current project entitled PISTIL a study of Flowers from around the World.

Mark Huang

(Sound Designer) Mark has designed for such companies as 2nd Stage Theatre, Stillpoint Productions, The Manhattan Theatre Club, The Thursday Problem, Impact Theatre, Theatre B, The Lincoln Center Theatre, The Atlantic Theatre, The Depot Theatre, Classic Stage Company, The Pearl Theatre Company, The New York Theatre Workshop, Alternate Plan Productions, The Civil Company, IMUA! Theatre, VoiceChair Productions, Wash & Fold Productions, Shakespeare & Company, The Wooster Group, Diamondpoint Theatre, Clubbed Thumb Inc., The Roundabout Theatre, The Actors Theatre of Louisville, and Monster(less) Actors Inc.  He won an Outstanding Sound Design award at the 2005 FringeNYC Festival for Go-Go Kitty, GO!, and was a Drama Desk nominee in 2002 for Cressida Among the Greeks.  He is an Associate Member of the SITI Co., a graduate of Grinnell College, and the founder of Doggtown Productions.

Alaine Alldaffer

(Casting Director) Alaine Alldaffer is the casting director for Playwrights Horizons and for “The Knights of Prosperity” (ABC).  Credits include “ED”        (NBC),”Monk” (USA), “A Raisin in the Sun” ( Broadway) and “Heights” a feature film for Merchant Ivory.  She has cast projects for Soho Rep in NYC, The Caldwell Theater in Florida and The Long Wharf Theater in Connecticut.  She works along side Associate Lisa Donadio.

Allison Prouty

(Line Producer) Most recently, Allison was the Guest Director for the 7th Annual Martha’s Vineyard Independent Film Festival.  Producing Credits: Mando Alvarado’s THROAT at the 45th Street Theater in NYC, Meade Theater Lab in D.C., Cine el Rey in McAllen, Texas and The Southern Theater in Minneapolis (Executive Producer), Eve Ensler’s THE GOOD BODY for the National Tour/Broadway (Associate Producer), VALIANT at the NY Fringe Festival (Co-Producer) and BONE PORTRAITS directed by Lear DeBessonet.  Allison was privileged to be the Associate Artistic Director for V-Day: A Global Movement to End Violence Against Women and Girls founded by Eve Ensler.  Allison is a proud member of the Producers Lab at Women’s Project and a graduate of Skidmore College.

Sari Karmin

(Assistant Director) was born in Toronto, CA, grew up in Shaker Heights, OH, and currently resides in the East Village.  She is a performer, director, and all around theater lover. Sari is a graduate of Skidmore College and the National Theater Institute at the Eugene O’Neill Center in Waterford, CT.  She has trained with Anne Bogart and the SITI Company during their summer intensive training program and also attended the Williamstown Theater Festival in the summer of 2002. As an actor, Sari has performed in numerous productions at Skidmore College and in New York City. She was a member of the Bat Theater Company at the Flea Theater and has also appeared at the American place Theater and the New Perspectives Theater, among others. As a director, Sari has directed several shows at Skidmore College, including the US and collegiate premier of The Other Shoe by Gao Xingjian. Additionally, she directed pieces by Maria Irene Fornes and produced, conceived and performed in her original work, Suspended Animation.  In 2005, Sari was the resident assistant director for the Chautauqua Theater Company in Chautauqua, NY where she had the pleasure of working with Ethan McSweeney, Vivienne Benesch, and Mark Nelson, among others. Recently she assisted Michael Ray Escamilla on the New York premiere of Throat at the 45th St Theater.  In New York, she has also worked at PS 122, The Ohio Theater, and New York Theater Workshop. Sari believes in the multi-faceted theater artist and that performance and production should be a collaborative experience.

Alex Finch

(Stage Manager) – Recent credits include the Broadway production of Souvenir and Timothy Busfield’s staged reading of Vigil by Morris Panych. He continues to tour nationally with the New York based Silver Brown Dance Company.  In New York he has worked for the Symphony Space (A Tribute to Anne Jackson and Eli Wallach), the York theatre (Souvenir), the Pantheon Theatre (’01-02), Bowery Poetry Club (Door Wide Open/Rip Torn), Alvin Ailey (Silver Brown), and the University Settlement (House PSM ’03-’04) among others. A native Californian who came to New York by way of the Actors Theatre of Louisville, Mr. Finch is pleased to be back at The Women’s Project and would like to thank his family, Tim B. and Jack Gianino.

  • David Adkins, Juliana Francis, Marguerite Stimpson, and Dylan Dawson in Transfigures. Photo by Carol Rosegg.

  • Dylan Dawson and T. Ryder Smith in Transfigures. Photo by Carol Rosegg.

  • David Adkins and Marguerite Stimpson in Transfigures. Photo by Carol Rosegg.

  • Ryder Smith and  Juliana Francis in Transfigures. Photo by Carol Rosegg.