THE NERDS IN CHARGE:
Anthony R. Miller (The “R” is for Awesome) is a writer, director, dramaturge, and proud theatre nerd from the San Francisco Bay Area. His early career was propelled by his work as a Slam poet, organizer, and coach for the San Jose Poetry Slam. As a coach, he worked with artists in the process of editing their work and refining their performance, ultimately sending a team to the National Semi-Finals. As a performer, he wrote and performed original work earning the title of the San Jose Grand Slam Champion for two consecutive years. In the mean time, he self-produced three albums, three books, and organized other large-scale performance poetry events in the area. After graduating from SF State University with a degree in dramaturgy, Anthony worked full-time as the House and Sales Manager at the SF Playhouse. While there he also served as the Assistant Director to Bill English, on two productions, and acted as curator for their monthly talkback series for High School Theatre Students. In addition, he served as Producer for the Sunday Night Solo Series, which showcased up and coming solo talent in their own one person show. Anthony also managed to write, and direct his own original musical while still working full-time for the Playhouse. Collaborating with composer Brendan West, Anthony conceptualized, authored the book, and co-produced Zombie! A New Musical. Over the course of three years, the show had three readings, a sold-out two-week workshop run and another sold-out three-week premiere run in San Francisco during October of 2009. Additionally, Zombie! was licensed to be featured in the InHuman festival in Louisville Kentucky Spring 2012, and the PETZ (People for the Ethical Treatment of Zombies) organization founded by Anthony is rotting…we mean thriving. By day Anthony works as the group sales manager at the Dean Lesher center for the arts, and has several scripts in the making.
Performing & producing by age three, inspired by the realization that birthday cake on her face, was a crowd pleas-er, Natalie Ashodian has been organizing messes into art, entertainment, and design ever since. A Jill-of-all trades type, with a background in humanities and the arts (Drama, Dance, & Sociology Degrees from UCSC, Entertainment & Media management Certification UCLA), she has spent years managing projects, curating live shows, producing media, and nurturing theatrical endeavours. Her initial theatrical inclinations (after her masterful debuts in such high school catastrophes as Bye Bye Birdie, Three Penny Opera, and the Linaea festival) were sprouted from performance poetry, spoken word, and later slam poetry competitions. By 18 she had been featured along side her other spoken group members (Via-Iva) in several showcase performances, and had produced two albums. In college she went on to co-produce the Kinetic Poetics Project, the largest non-competition focused spoken word festival in the US founded by Jeremy Karafin, now the Co-Artistic Director of Poetic Theater NYC for which Natalie does some consulting. Many part-time jobs, free-lance frenzies, mini tours, wacky costumes, music videos, start -ups, random acting, modeling, and creative partnerships later, Natalie re-met Anthony after years of not going to slam poetry shows and together they dove into projects like “ZOMBIE!” that would later be dubbed “Awesome Theatre”. Natalie still works for several other organizations as well as under her own brand “Eccentric Productions” for projects that fall outside of Awesome Theatre’s main mission. For more about Natalie, and her other projects, check out her personal website, and for design pieces for sale, check out her store on ETSY.
THE NERDS WHO ASSIST:
After literally throwing herself on Anthony and Natalie at the first ever TERROR-RAMA reading, Alandra Hileman quickly wormed her way into the Awesome Theatre family as a part-time stage-and-production manager, webmaster, social media monkey, and occasional keeper-of-sanity. She has a couple of degrees, a lot of jobs, and a massive vampire movie collection. You can learn more about her various skills and projects at her website.
Colin Johnson is one of Awesome Theatre’s go-to directors and all-around video gurus. Bookseller by day, horror-geek by night, he’s directed all the TERROR-RAMA projects to date, including the shiver-inducing teaser videos. Colin has been writing and directing short films and theatrical productions since he was 15. His Bay Area credits include direction for Noises Off (Actors Ensemble of Berkeley), The Oresteia (Round Belly Theatre Company). He has written for Daomu, a comic book with Image Comics. He has also produced, written, directed, and performed in dozens of original shows with Battle Stache Studios (Co-Founder, Artistic Director), Bay One-Acts Festival, First Person Singular, PianoFight’s Short Lived, Albany Film Fest, SF Olympians Festival, and SF Fringe. He was a member of the 2013-2014 PlayGround Writers Pool and he holds a degree in film and theatre production from Eastern Washington University.