Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Ivy+Bean: Cast Brings the Book Series to Life

Even though Ivy and Bean think that they have nothing in common, the two girls join forces on a project and, along the way, become best friends, and learn the importance of friendship and family. The actors in the cast have lots of things in common: active careers in theatre, television and film, a love of music and dance and more. Meet the cast of Ivy+Bean.

Melody Butiu (Mom, Soccer Kid) The last time she was on SCR’s Julianne Argyros Stage, she played Junie B. Jones in Jingle Bells, Batman Smells. Butiu studied theatre in college and graduate school at the University of, San Diego. She spent the first half of this year singing and dancing in what she describes as a “crazy fun disco” musical by David Byrne, Here Lies Love, at The Public Theater in New York City. Her other SCR productions include Shipwrecked! An Entertainment: The Amazing Adventures of Louis De Rougemont (As Told by Himself) and The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow. On television, she has appeared in “Raising Hope,” “NCIS,” “Modern Family,” “Rules of Engagement” and “Melissa & Joey.”

Dylan DoVale (Leo) Growing up, Dylan DoVale loved sports—soccer, baseball, basketball, even chess. Later cross-country and track seemed to be his thing. Today, his favorite sports team is New York Yankees. When he’s not busy being physical or practicing fire bending (Did I just say firebending !? Yes I did!) or hanging out with friends, he reads. Some of his favorite books include: Sword in the Stone, The Hobbit, Sherlock Holmes, Harry Potter, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and, of course, Tintin.

Emily Eiden  (Nancy, Zuzu) Previously, Eiden appeared in SCR’s Anastasia Krupnik, Junie B. in Jingle Bells, Batman Smells, A Year with Frog and Toad and Taking Steps. Acting is a family affair for Eiden: her parents met in a play directed by her grandfather; she and her brother grew up acting in plays directed by their parents, and she met her husband in acting class. In addition to stage work, she is an audio book story teller, including the “Whatever After” series, “A Dog’s Way Homeand “Paranormalcy” or the scholastic animated films Children Make Terrible Pets and Exclamation Mark.  As a voiceover artist, she is featured in the Cartoon Network show, “Clarence” and in the planetarium shows at Griffith Observatory.

William Martinez is making his SCR debut. He grew up in a deaf household and only was exposed  to the entertainment industry when a theatre troupe came to his school and performed a show that changed his life.  He instantly knew that he wanted to sing and act. Martinez  pursued his college degree in musical theatre from the University of Northern Colorado and then moved to Los Angeles.  He has performed shows at the Mark Taper Forum (Big River), Laguna Playhouse (Plaid Tidings), Alex Theatre, TO Arts Plaza, Carpenter Center and many other theatres.  He also gives back to the school community by performing in four different kids shows:  Page to Stage and The History of Musical Theatre for Musical Theatre Guild; Orchestra Intro with the New West Symphony; and We Tell Their Story with Musical Theatre West.  He hopes that bringing musical theatre to underprivileged schools will inspire others to follow their dream, too. He is a member of Musical Theatre Guild and Actors Equity.

Elia Saldana (Bean) Her acting career began with dance she started out doing dance recitals dressed as a bear and singing Christmas carols for sher dad’s camcorder. Then she got schooled at a place called UCSD (the University of California, San Diego) and went on to have many acting adventures. You might have seen her as Kayla in Jane of the Jungle or Elisa in Anastasia Krupnik here at SCR! She also was married to a rock and roll star in Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story and toured all over the place. She got to dance a lot in West Side Story and played a sassy girl in Family Planning, and even got nominated for a cool award called the Ovation. Recently she fulfilled her dream of voicing a cartoon character by playing Cecilia on Fox’s "The Cleveland Show." She wants to thank her family, friends, and Burl for their love and support. Never stop learning new things and follow your dreams! www.eliasaldana.com

Sammi Smith (Ivy) I am so excited to be playing Ivy! I grew up right down the road from South Coast Repertory in Irvine, where I went to Eastshore Elementary School. I decided she wanted to be an actor as a little girl when my Grandma Maxine took me to see plays at Downey Civic Light Opera. Last spring, I got to play many different characters in The Phantom Tollbooth at Mainstreet Theatre Company, including the roles of the Princess of Pure Reason and the Demon of Insincerity. My husband, Jeremy, and I run a theatre company in Los Angeles called Coeurage Theatre Company. We’re currently performing Shakespeare's Love’s Labour’s Lost. Besides acting and singing, I love hiking, listening to audio books and spending time with my cat, Dot.

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