A New Brain
Cast & Team
Gordon Michael Schwinn
Kyle is thrilled to be in his second Second Fiddle show. Recently he was in the ensemble of The Most Happy Fella. He attended the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in NYC. Favorite roles include Thenardier in Les Miserables, Benjy Stone in My Favorite Year and Seymour in Little Shop of Horrors. When Kyle isn't onstage he can be found playing piano all over the Twin Cites: notably music directing Violet and Next to Normal at Yellow Tree Theatre.
What inspires me: Committed Artists.
Wesley Mouri couldn't think of a better way to join the Second Fiddle family. Wes has been seen around town at The Guthrie Theater,
Chanhassen Dinner Theaters, The Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, Children's Theater Company, Mu Performing Arts, and Theater for the Thirsty. Some highlights include The Music Man at the Guthrie, The
Little Mermaid at Chanhassen, A Little Night Music with Mu Performing Arts, and most recently The Cocoanuts, also at the Guthrie. Originally from Illinois, Wes has found a home within the MN theater community
and as a proud member of the Actor's Equity Association. Next up: South Pacific at The Guthrie.
What inspires me: Inclusion in the arts and in life.
Whitney is jazzed to become a "Fiddler" by getting to play the best friend onstage to one of her dear friends offstage! As an arts administrator, she finds joy "making it go" with The Catalysts and as Mixed Blood Theatre's Development Manager. Feeding her obsession with words, current writing projects include For Tonight, A New Musical (in partnership with Spencer & Shenelle Williams) and Vegas Organic (in partnership with Michael Gruber). Performing Credits include: Old Log Theatre, Theater Latte Da, Minnesota Fringe Festival, Minnetonka Theatre, Children's Theatre Company, Hennepin Theatre Trust and Park Square Theatre. Proud Drake University alum and homegrown Nebraskan. "What inspires me is the moment people feel empowered by their own capacity to tell a story; the spark in that collective power of storytelling. Giving audience and artist the opportunity to have an individual but shared experience and then dialogue about it? Come on, sign me up for that feeling every day of the week. THAT'S why I love this work."
JEN BURLEIGH BENTZ
Jen BB is stoked to be performing again with Second Fiddle Produtions! Recently she was seen playing Maud Dunlop on the Guthrie Stage in the Music Man. Broadway: Mamma Mia - Tanya. Regional: Queenie in Wild Party (Lippa), Fitzgerald Theatre, Judy Garland in Beyond the Rainbow, Laverne Andrews in Christmas of Swing, Mrs. Winters in Working Boys Band at the History Theatre, Muriel in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels at the Old Log, Annie in Annie Get your Gun, Irene Malloy in Hello Dolly! and Violet in 9 to 5, amongst other lovely roles she feels blessed to have had the opportunity to play. Jen co-owns Brickhouse Music in River Falls, WI with her guitarist/singer-songwriter husband, Tommy Bentz. Jen also performed with Collide Dance Troupe in their production of CLUE at the Cowles Center last October.
Dr. Jafar Berensteiner
Rush Benson is an actor, dancer, teacher, musician, and choreographer originally from Minneapolis, MN. In 2013, Rush graduated with a B.A. in Theatre and Dance from Gustavus Adolphus College and is currently a company member with the Flying Foot Forum directed by Joe Chvala. Rush works as a musical theater choreographer and dance teacher at Washburn High School, Ramsey Middle School and Henry Sibley High School. Most recently, Rush has performed at The Guthrie ("The Music Man"), The Ordway ("A Chorus Line") and The Old Log Theater ("The Wedding Singer"). In 2014, Rush traveled to Hong Kong to perform as a musician and artist in the Pier Windows Project with Folded Paper Dance and Theatre directed by Kanta Kochar.
Rush has performed in choreographic works by Jamal Sims (Choreographer from the Step Up film series), Phillip Flickinger, Heather Klopchin, Stephan Koplowitz, and Stuart Pimsler Dance & Theater. He has also performed locally with the James Sewell Ballet, Collide Theatrical Dance Company, Bloomington Civic Theater, Minnesota Dance Theater, Keane Sense of Rhythm Tap Company, Youth Performance Company, and in the jazz-based dance show "Rhythmically Speaking". Rush teaches regularly at Zenon Dance School in Minneapolis. He enjoys a solid jam session, ciphers, colored pencils, animals, nature, and the feeling you get from a deep intellectual discussion.
Waitress/ Nancy D.
Hope Nordquist (Waitress/Nancy D) is so excited to be making her Second Fiddle debut! Previous credits include: Savage Umbrella: June; The Ordway Center for the Performing Arts: A Christmas Story: The Musical; Mu Performing Arts: A Very Asian Christmas, Twelfth Night, A Little Night Music; Bloomington Civic Theater: The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee; The MovingCompany: Come Hell and High Water. TRAINING: The Stella Adler Studio of Acting. What inspires her is her fantastic friends and family!
MATT NEILSEN Drums / Percussion
Matt was previously seen in the Second Fiddle Orchestra in The Most Happy Fella and Blood Brothers . Matt is new to the Twin Cities theatre scene, but he has been an avid performer for the last 22 years. At 13 years old, he discovered the joy of the orchestra pit, and has passionately combined his love of theatre with his percussion, trombone, and conducting skills ever since. Favorite orchestra pits include Once On This Island, Beauty and The Beast, Guys and Dolls, West Side Story, and Aida. Matt holds a Bachelor of Music in Media Music from Brigham Young University, where he toured the U.S., Australia, and China with The Young Ambassadors musical theatre revue as assistant music director and drummer. In 2009, Matt came to Minnesota to begin his professional career performing at Valleyfair. You may have seen him playing keytar with The Squiggles, singing and beatboxing with The Acafellas and the Skele-tones, drumming with StreetBeat, dancing with The Peanuts Gang, or hosting various events as DJ UpBeat (and his spooky counterpart, DJ DeadBeat). In 2005, Matt began his most important gig when he married the love of his life, Melissa, and started a family, which has grown to 4 kids (Brody, Charlotte, Lainee, and Adelaide) and a cat (Elsa). Matt is thrilled to be back working with artists who love theatre as much as he does!
Jay Albright thinks Second Fiddle is an exiting and relevant endeavor and is pleased to be a part of it. Locally he has been seen at the Guthrie (Quince, in Midsummer Night's Dream, and Fezziwig in that awesome Christmas show), Chanhassen (Max in The Producers, Max in The Sound of Music, Moonface in Anything Goes, Herod in Jesus Christ Superstar, Bustopher Jones in Cats, that clock in Beauty and the Beast, and lots of other shows), Frank Theater (Biedermann in The Arsonists), The Jungle (Mr Depinna in You Can't Take It with You), The History Theater, Penumbra Theater, The Old Log, and Illusion Theater. Regionally, he has been seen at The People's Light and Theater Company, St. Louis Repertory Theater, Hope Summer Theater, and The Old Creamery. He lives in South Minnepolis with Angie, Sam, Abe and their dog Hutt. Tonight, he is inspired by Abe.
CHARLA MARIE BAILEY
Lisa, A Homeless Woman
A legal office professional by day and actress by night, Charla has managed to be happy enjoying her two passions in life; law and drama.
Performing on stages throughout the Twin Cities for years as a poet and actress, Charla has performed at the Guthrie, Penumbra and Pangea. She has also worked with Mama Mosaic, Theatre Coup d’Etat, The Unit Collective and Theatre Unbound. She has three children, two dogs and a man child at home.
What inspires me...... (are my children!)
Kym loves being a part of Second Fiddle! Kym has been a part of Drood, Titanic and Baby! Kym began her theater career in New York and has toured across the country in Cats, Cinderella and Wizard of Oz. Since moving to Minneapolis her work has been seen at Chanhassen, Old Log, Ordway, History Theater, Nautilus and the Guthrie. Kym is also a founding member of “Chick Cheer” a holiday all female caroling group.
"What inspires me now is sharing my experiences with younger generations of performing artists!”
Richard, the Nice Nurse
Tony Vierling has been a member of Actor's Equity for over 30 years! His credits include working Off-Broadway, National tours, cruise ships, and dancing for Disney. Regionally he has worked at Paper Mill Playhouse in New Jersey, TUTS in Houston, Casa Manana in Dallas/Fort Worth, Odyssey Theater Ensemble in L.A., Ordway in St. Paul, and 10 productions at the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis. Appearing in 40 productions at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres, he is currently playing LeFou in Disney's Beauty and the Beast. "What inspires me is a true old school Triple Threat!"
Paul R. Coate (Director) is a theatre artist, vocalist, and educator. He
was most recently a part of the 'NEXT' new works series and on tour with
'All Is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914' both for Theater Latte Da.
Other theatre credits include the Guthrie Theater, Children's Theatre
Company, History Theatre, Park Square Theatre, Nebraska Repertory Theatre,
Nebraska Shakespeare, Paul Bunyan Playhouse, Pioneer Place On Fifth, and
many more. Opera and concert credits include St. Paul Chamber Orchestra,
Minnesota Orchestra, Opera Omaha, Omaha Symphony, and Skylark Opera. Paul
recently directed The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee for
Normandale Community College, and teaches music and theatre classes at the
St. Paul Conservatory For Performing Artists, and other locations around
the Twin Cities. Member AEA. Paul is inspired by random acts of kindness.
Theatre: Park Square: My Children! My Africa!; Theatre Pro Rata: 1984 (Dramaturgy Intern); History Theatre: Dramaturgy Intern
Training: B.A., Psychology and Cultural Studies, UMN
Upcoming Projects: Park Square Theater: Nina Simone: Four Women; History Theatre: Complicated Fun
Nic Delcambre is a Twin Cities composer, keyboardist, and actor who is proud to be Music Directing his sixth Second Fiddle Production. He is currently in Murder for Two at Park Square Theatre. Nic is also music directing Complicated Fun at the History Theatre.
His stage credits include Casting SpellsProduction's Disenchanted (Piano/Band Leader), The History Theatre's Buddy – The Buddy Holly Story (Piano), The Christmas Schooner (Barclay), 1968 (Piano/Band Leader), MSCM Theatre's Hair (Music Director/Piano), Assassins (Charles Guiteau), Working (UPS Man/Trucker), WCT's The Music Man (Music Director/Harold Hill) Into the Woods (Cinderella's Prince), The Drowsy Chaperone (Feldzieg) and many others. In addition to creating and Music Directing new works for The Producing House at Chanhassen Dinner Theatres, Nic has composed and scored a number of short and feature length films, including Maxwell Freduenthal’s Undone, a feature-length musical which won the Audience Choice Award at the OUT Twin Cities film festival. Nic has played keyboards for the hit 80's rock sing-a-long Power Balladz and was recently in The History Theatre Working Boys Band and Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story also at the History Theatre.
Ruthie Baker recently played Cleo in Second Fiddle Productions The Most Happy Fella. A Minnesota native, Ruthie moved to NYC in 2005 where she was involved in various readings with B-Side Productions, NYU Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program, Manhattan Theatre Club and the Manhattan JCC. She is delighted to be back in the Twin Cities and hopes to help other artists connect with their potential and possiblity through Second Fiddle! Ruthie has loved musical theatre since she was 3 and saw her first musical "Peter Pan" at the Hopkins Community Center. She is the Artistic Director and Founder of Second Fiddle Productions. Catch her this fall in Glensheen at the History Theatre. www.ruthiebaker.com
What inspires me: Simple & honest storytelling, exploring without fear. Sillyness, creativity, possibility and fun-loving people! Oh, and puggles.