Nov 19, 2016

Coffeehouse Chronicles #137 : Target Margin Theater

Moderated by Rinne Groff

a black arrow pointing downward

Panelists: Purva Bedi | John Collins | Lenore Doxsee | David Herskovits | Eunice Wong |

Performers: Will Badgett | David Eye |  Tigger Ferguson | Jesse Freedman | Rebecca Hart | Mary Neufeld |

| Steven Ratazzi | David Rosenmeyer | Yuri Skujins | Stephanie Weeks |

About Target Margin Theater

Now in its 25th season, Target Margin Theater (TMT) is founded on the principle that works of art return us to real truths more powerfully by their divergence from a strict illustration of reality. Target Margin seeks continuously to expand our conception of what can take place in a theater, creating aggressively reimagined versions of classic texts and new plays inspired by existing sources. Difference is the generative principle of everything we do, and we hope each new work creates a different answer to the question, ‘what is a play?’

Will Badgett  has been an associate member of TMT since its beginning and has performed in many productions with them; some faves: Titus Andronicus (Aaron), Mamba’s Daughters (Gilly Bluton), Mother Courage (Cook), Faust Part 1 & 2 (Faust) and more. This marks his 4th adventure under the direction of Mr. Skujins. Most recently Will performed with Talking Band in Burnished by Grief at La Mama E.T.C. A true performance whore, he’ll work stage, film, or television.

Purva Bedi is an Associate Artist with Target Margin Theatre: Reread Another, The Tempest, Second Language, Ten Blocks on the Camino Real, Old Comedy, These Very Serious Jokes, The 5 Hysterical Girls Theorem, The Seagull, Sonoma. Other theatre: Idiot (HERE), Veil’d (Women’s Project), There or Here (Hypothetical Theater), Parts & Parts of Stitches (MTWorks), The Rise of Dorothy Hale (St. Luke’s); East is East (Manhattan Theater Club & New Group) and currently developingAssembled Identity (HERE w/Kristin Marting). Film & TV: Sully, Equity, Person of Interest, Nurse Jackie, The Good Wife, Unforgettable, Kumare, Cosmopolitan, Green Card Fever & American Desi. Purva is a member of The Actor’s Center Workshop Company, Founding member of Disha Theatre and currently teaches at the Anthony Meindl Actors Workshop. She studied at Williams College, The British American Drama Academy and the Public Theatre Shakespeare Lab.

John Collins founded Elevator Repair Service in 1991. Since then, he has directed or co-directed all of the company’s productions. John is the recipient of a 2014 Doris Duke Performing Artist Award, a 2010 Guggenheim Fellowship in Drama and Performance Art and a 2011 United States Artists Donnelley Fellowship. John received the Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Director and the Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Director for ERS’ production of GATZ.  Other notable ERS projects include THE SOUND AND THE FURY, ARGUENDO, THE SELECT (THE SUN ALSO RISES) and FONDLY, COLLETTE RICHLAND (a new play by Sibyl Kempson). His writing about theater and sound design can be found in the booksTheatre Noise: The Sound of Performance (Cambridge Scholars, 2011) andEncountering Ensemble (Methuen Drama, 2013).

Lenore Doxsee (TMT Associate Artistic Director) — Her recent designs include lighting for Miguel Gutierrez’ Age & Beauty, Parts 1, 2 & 3 and John Jasperse’s Within Between.  Designs with Target Margin include Uriel Acosta, The Tempest, and many others. Lenore has received two Bessie Awards for her work with choreographer Miguel Gutierrez.

David Eye left New York City and a seventeen-year career in the theatre in the fall of 2005 to earn an MFA in Creative Writing at Syracuse University. His poems and nonfiction have appeared in over twenty journals and anthologies, and his first book of poems, Seed, is forthcoming in 2017 from The Word Works, an independent press based in Washington, DC. As an actor, David was fortunate to work with Target Margin Theater in four shows: Hamlet, Mother Courage, Young Goodman Brown, and Mamba’s Daughters. In addition to a slew of Off- and Off-Off-Broadway appearances, David toured with the Broadway production of Cats, and had roles on Law & Order and Special Victims Unit. David has taught writing and literature at Manhattan College, St. John’s University, Syracuse University, and Cazenovia College. He lives, for now, at the edge of a forest in the Catskill Mountains.

James Tigger Ferguson – – “The Godfather of Neo-Boylesque” is a stripperformance artist/actor/dancer who has performed in NYC since 1988 & around the world since 1993. A pioneer in the 1990s burlesque renaissance who won the 1st-ever “King of Boylesque/Mr. Exotic World” title at Burlesque Hall of Fame in Las Vegas 2006. Won several Golden Pastie Awards, including “Most Likely to Get Shut Down by the Law” & “Most Unpredictable Performer.” His act was banned at Rome’s Gay Village. He has collaborated & performed in numerous original works with Taylor Mac, Julie Atlas Muz, Penny Arcade, Talking Band, Target Margin Theater, TWEED & other geniuses.

Rinne Groff’s plays and musicals including The Five Hysterical Girls Theorem, Fire in Dreamland, 77%,Comfort Inn, Compulsion, Saved, In the Bubble, What Then, The Ruby Sunrise, Inky, Jimmy Carter was a Democrat, and Orange Lemon Egg Canary have been produced by Target Margin, the Public Theater, Playwrights Horizons, Trinity Rep, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Yale Rep, the Women’s Project, PS122, Clubbed Thumb, and the San Francisco Playhouse, among others, in the United States and internationally. TV: staff writer onWeeds, season two. Rinne is a recipient of the Whiting Writers Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and an Obie Award grant. Founding member of Elevator Repair Service Theater Company.  New Dramatists, Dramatist Guild.  Associate Arts Professor, NYU, Tisch School of the Arts.

Rebecca Hart ( is an actress, singer and songwriter based in NYC. She played Helena in Target Margin’s Uncle Vanya in 2012 and wrote songs for the company’s ‘Uriel Acosta’ in 2014. Recent credits include ‘Luna Gale’ (Actors Theatre Louisville); Rimbaud in New York’ (The Civilians at BAM), ‘In the Eruptive Mode’ (Yarmouk Cultural center, Kuwait & Spring Festival Beirut), and ‘Midsummer, a play with songs’ (Hartford Theaterworks). She is currently at work on an album called ‘The Magician’s Daughter’ produced by Ben Sollee and Ben Arons, and is in Year I of NYU’s Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program. Associate Artist, The Civilians.

David Herskovits (TMT Founder & Artistic Director) recently directed a new production of Porgy and Bess for the 2016 Spoleto Festival USA, Target Margin’s Drunken With What at Abrons Arts Center and Reread Another at The Brick, and Michael Gordon’s Van Gogh for Bang On A Can at Mass MOCA. He’s directed many productions for TMT and other theaters & festivals. In December 2016 he’ll directDurned Queer, a work-in-progress as part of the TMT Lab, and Spring 2017 he’ll direct TMT’s production of Eugene O’Neill’s epic trilogy Mourning Becomes Electra.

Sarah Hughes (TMT Artistic Producer) is a director & producer. She worked with Elevator Repair Service from 2007-14 and has also worked with Superhero Clubhouse, the Office for Creative Research, Half Straddle, and Vox Theater, among others. With McFeely Sam Goodman she’s presented work at Prelude, CATCH, The Flea, Columbia University and the Signature Theater; her work has also been seen at The Brick, The Martin E. Segal Center, and BAM’s Next Wave Festival. She’s a member of the New Georges Jam and The Civilians R&D Lab, and she’s currently co-teaching a class on contemporary theater at Dartmouth College.

Mary Neufeld appeared in these Target Margin productions Uncle Vanya (Serebryakov), Dinner Party (Diotima), Mother Courage and Her Children (Mother Courage), Little Eyolf (Rita), The Tempest (Caliban), Hamlet (Polonius), Cymboline (Belarius), Titus Andronicus (Tamara) and Measure for Measure (Lucio). Mary also acted with the Ridiculous Theatrical Company in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde(Bernice Braintwain) and Der Ring Gott Farblonjet (Gutruna and Hunding).

Steven Rattazzi with Target Margin:The Tempest; The Really Big Once; The Dinner Party; Dido, Queen of Carthage; The 5 Hysterical Girls Theorem; The Seagull; Strictly Dishonorable; Six Scenes: a Barracks Brawl; Objects Lie On A Table; Egypt; Titus Andronicus. NY Theatre: Arthur & Esther(Access Theater); The Black Crook (Abrons);  Indecent (Vineyard Theater); Death of the Liberal Class (New Ohio); City Of (Playwrights Realm); Stunning (Lincoln Center’s LCT3); Galileo w/F. Murray Abraham; The Tempestw/Mandy Patinkin (CSC); Henry V w/Liev Schrieber (Public Theater); Painted Snake on a Painted Chair (OBIE, Talking Band); McGurk(ERS); and Richard Foreman’s Samuel’s Major Problems (Ontological Theater). Regional: Indecent (Yale Rep/La Jolla Playhouse); Marie Antoinette (ART/Yale Rep); The School for Wives (Two River Theater, NJ); The Lovesong of J. Robert Oppenheimer, director/Mark Wing-Davey (Cincinnati Playhouse). Steven will be appearing on Broadway this Spring in Paula Vogel’s Indecent.

Yuri Skujins is an Associated Artist of Target Margin. He directed TMT Labs Sonoma and Boca (which he also authored) as well as Bronks Ekspress, Moth and the Flame, Rook, Hexachloraphene, A Family Affair, and The Scarecrow. He’s acted in many TMT Mainstage productions including Uncle Vanya, These Very Serious Jokes, Tulpa, Mamba’s Daughters, Cymbeline & Titus Andronicus, among others. Graduate, Cornish College of the Arts.

Stephanie Weeks has performed at many regional theaters and Off- Broadway. Favorite roles include Salima in Ruined, Belle in A Christmas Carol, Tituba in The Crucible and Shark in Oh My God I’m So Thirst(y), Innovative Theater nomination. Film: Ex-Doofus… Dir: Melvin Van Peebles, Tribeca Film Festival.

Eunice Wong was Gretchen in TMT’s Faust at Classic Stage. Also: Smart People (Huntington – My Theatre Boston Award, Best Actress), Intelligent Design… (Studio – Helen Hayes Award, Lead Actress), Infinite Ache (Walnut St. – Barrymore Award Lead Actress nom.), work at the Atlantic, Guthrie, Yale Rep, NAATCO, Pearl. TV: “Sex & the City,” “Law & Order,” many others. Juilliard. Vegan Canuck. For Chris & the babies.

Moe Yousuf (TMT Artistic Producer) is a theater-maker and arts administrator. Previously, he worked at the Henry Street Settlement and has presented work at PRELUDE, Dixon Place, Soho Rep Walkerspace, The Bushwick Starr, Co-Prosperity Sphere, and Rubber Rep Pilot Balloon. Upcoming: The Black Crook at Abrons Arts Center, Fall 2016.

Coffeehouse Chronicles


Coffeehouse Chronicles is an educational performance series exploring the history of Off-Off-Broadway. Part artist-portrait, part history lesson, and part community forum, Coffeehouse Chronicles take an intimate look at the development of downtown theatre, from the 1960s’ “Coffeehouse Theatres” through today.

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