The Artists

Ellie Schwetye as Olga (the eldest)

Ellie Schwetye is a performer, director, and producer, primarily with Slightly Askew Theatre Ensemble (SATE). She previously appeared in ERA’s “The Residents of Craigslist”. She has performed in six of SATE’s productions, including “Bachelorette”, “Macbeth”, and an original play, “Mary Shelley Monster Show”, which she conceived with co-producer Rachel Tibbetts.  She directed SATE’s productions of “Hamletmachine”, “Eleemosynary” and “Or,”, and looks forward to directing Naomi Wallace’s “One Flea Spare” and “As You Like It” in SATE’s upcoming 2015 and 2016 seasons. Ellie has also performed with the Black Rep, Mustard Seed Theatre, R-S Theatrics, New Jewish Theatre, Stray Dog, and Hydeware.  She worked extensively with Black Cat Theatre/Piwacket Theatre for Children including as a repertory performer and a director/teaching artist. Along with being a theatre-maker, Ellie is an avid theatre-goer and is proud to be a part of such a vibrant, arts-supportive community.


Julia Crump as Irina (the youngest)

Julia Crump is absolutely thrilled to be a part of Moscow!  A graduate of Saint Louis University, she has appeared in many productions around St. Louis.  Favorite recent productions include: Stairs to the Roof (Sudden View Productions), Time Stands Still (Insight Theatre), Make Hamlet (ERA), and Death of a Salesman (Insight Theatre). She can be seen in the feature films Double the Life and She Loves Me Not. Julia also enjoys working in event entertainment and is an exclusive performer with Belle of the Ball. Lots of love to her family and friends!

Rachel Tibbetts as Masha

Rachel is a founding member of Slightly Askew Theatre Ensemble (SATE), and has appeared in eleven of SATE’s productions including Top Girls, Nine/Sketch, Mary Shelley Monster Show and Or,. Rachel directed SATE's productions of Macbeth, Burn This, The Woman in Black and Bachelorette. She will appear in their production of The 39 Steps in November. Rachel has also performed with R-S Theatrics in their productions of The Cherry Sisters: Revisited and Oh, Hell! and will work with them again in Mr Burns, a post electric play this September. She has worked in arts education since 2000 at the Delaware Theatre Company, Young Audiences of St. Louis and Prison Performing Arts. She received her B.A. in Theatre from Oklahoma State University and graduated from the 2006‐2007 Community Arts Training Institute at the Regional Arts Commission.  Love to Mom, Dad and Jason.



Will Bonfiglio as Andrey (their brother)

Will first started working with ERA last year as a performer in Make Hamlet, and he recently co-adapted and performed in The Residents of Craigslist. Recently he has performed in The Little Prince (COCA Presents) and was Assistant Director of Old Wounds (GoodPeople Theatre). He also has performed with November Theater Company and Variety Children's Theatre, and he works as an Arts Educator for COCA. Many thanks to Lucy and his friends and family for putting up with his crazy schedule in order for him to do what he loves. And the biggest thanks of all to the audience for supporting Saint Louis arts and local artists!

Pete Winfrey as Vershinin (the Battery Commander)

Pete Winfrey is a St. Louis-based actor, singer, and teaching artist. Favorite credits include: Twelfth Night (Shakespeare Festival St. Louis), Parade (R-S Theatrics), Red (Encore Theater Group), Stairs to the Roof (Sudden View Productions), The Spitfire Grill (Insight Theatre Company), and others. In 2014, he was honored with two accolades – he was named Best New St. Louis Actor by St. Louis Post-Dispatch Go Magazine and was also nominated for the St. Louis Theatre Circle Award for Outstanding Actor in a Musical for his work in Parade. As a teaching artist, he has worked with Metro Theatre Company and the Shakespeare Festival Education Tour. Pete is a graduate of Washington University and studied acting at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London. 

Mitch Eagles as Baron Tuzenbach (a Lieutenant)

Hailing originally from Des Moines, Iowa, Mitch is a company member and associate producer with ERA, focusing on the use of improvisation in the theater. He performed in ERA’s first two productions (Make Hamlet and The Residents of Craigslist) and assisted in a workshop of a future production of Moscow!. He is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis, where he studied physics and mathematics, as well as performed in theatrical, dance, and improvisational productions. He now lives in St. Louis City and has worked with several companies in addition to ERA, including St. Louis Shakespeare, Stray Dog Theatre, and November Theatre Company, as well as performing regularly at The Improv Shop, where he is a graduate of their training program.

Mike Wells as Chebutykin (a doctor, also with the military)

Mike Wells is a really good actor and guy. He is not a real-life doctor. 

Randy Brachman as Solyony (a Captain)

Randy is an aspiring lawyer by day, asleep by night. When he’s not studying for the bar, you can usually find him ata bar. He would like to thank Lucy for all the wonderful things she’s done as BODYSNATCHERS’ artistic director and all the cool ERA people he gets to hang out with. If you like what you see, come back for all of BODYSNATCHERS’ performances after every R+J show, and you can also see Randy play with Galaxander at The Improv Shop in the Central West End.

Cara Barresi as Natasha (Andrey's wife) 

This is Cara’s third time working with ERA. Most recently she was seen in ERA’s R& J: A Telephone Play, The Residents of Craigslist and the first ever “pop science” play called Brainworks with BJC and Washington University at the Sheldon Concert Hall. She has also recently been seen in Good People Theatre's Old Wounds, and has been in several plays with The Slightly Askew Theatre Ensemble, as well as worked with The New Jewish Theatre, The Uppity Company, and First Run Theatre. She received her BA in theatre performance from Bradley University and also spent some time in London where she worked both on stage and on film. During the day, Cara educates kids on overall health with Delta Dental Health Theatre, and is a Standardized Patient at Washington University.

Music Arranger/Director: Joe Taylor (also Ferapont, a porter)

Joe is the songwriter and frontman of indie piano rock band, Kid Scientist, with whom he is currently recording a new album, directing a short film, and writing an original rock opera. He previously directed their original rock opera, Arboria. The band has also provided opening support for a variety of artists including Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Ben Kweller, and Hooray for Earth. With the production arm of Kid Scientist, KS Studios, Joe has shot, scored, and produced several short films and music videos, including Wanted and Golden Rose for Middle Class Fashion. He holds a BA from Washington University in St. Louis, where he studied German language and literature and physics. Joe can also be found occasionally playing with the bands Whoa Thunder and Golden Curls and the imrov troupe Bodysnatchers. 

Costume Designer: Meredith LaBounty

Meredith is thrilled to be working with ERA again after having such a rewarding experience last year when she costume-designed Make Hamlet. She graduated The Savannah College of Art and design in 2013 with a BFA in Production Design with a concentration in Costume Design. More recently she costumed Good in Everything, the 2014 Shakespeare in the Streets show for Shakespeare Festival of St. Louis. She also costumed-designed and Stitched November Theatre Company’s inaugural showAssassins. This summer she will be working as Stitcher for Opera Theatre of St. Louis’ 2015 Season. More of Meredith’s work can be seen on her website

Adapter, Director, & Scenic Designer: Lucy Cashion (also Anfisa, a servant)

Lucy is a multi-disciplinary theatre-artist and founder of ERA. Notably in St. Louis, she conceived of, directed, and designed R + J: A Telephone Play; she directed and designed The Residents of Craigslist, which she created with Will Bonfiglio; and she adapted, produced, and directed Make Hamlet, an experimental re-envisioning of Shakespeare's iconic play. Her major NYC theatre credits include AK-47 Sing-Along (director, sound designer, co-composer; New York International Fringe Festival award - "Excellence in Directing"), and De Sous (now called Latino; director, sound designer). She is a guest artist at St. Louis University, a teaching artist with Prison Performing Arts, and the coach of the improv troupe Bodysnatchers. Lucy received her MFA from Columbia University, studied at l'École d'art dramatique Eva St-Paul and trained with SITI Company.

Assistant Director & Stage Manager: Gabe Taylor (also Kulygin, Masha's husband)

Gabe is a St. Louis native and currently serves as Resident Stage Manager at New Line Theatre. Gabe's stage management experience also includes The Theatre Lab's inaugural production of The Sunset Limited and the 2012 summer season at Tibbits Opera House in Coldwater, MI. His directing credits include assistant directing ERA's The Residents of Craigslist, and a successful production of the Neo-Futurist's piece Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind with the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Theatre Department in October 2012, which was remounted for SIUE's 2013 XFEST in partnership with the Student Experimental Theatre Organization. He'd like to take this opportunity to thank you for choosing live theatre over yet another movie about vampires.

Photographer & Assistant Stage Manager: Katrin Hackenberg

Originally from Berlin, Germany, Katrin left a predictable career in banking to move with her husband to St. Louis, USA. She combined her previous love for capturing a moment in time through photography with her newfound spare time as she explored her new environment. She began a new, unpredictable life of creative work. She enrolled in the art classes at St. Louis Community College. She began working with ERA, which has provided her with a phenomenal opportunity to photograph and engage with unique, creative people. Katrin won first prize in the International Student Photo Contest in Missouri in April 2014.

Production Intern & Assistant Stage Manager: Vince Grote

Vince is a 22 year old multi-disciplinary artist and scientist placing the majority of emphasis in the triad of playwrighting, directing, and theatre performance. He is incredibly honored to have Moscow! be his first opportunity to work with ERA, as the company's fundamentals parallel his own. He was last seen in Nancy Bell's Saint Louis University Theatre production of As You Like It (LeBeau/William) and last directed Power Pair, which he compiled from two independent, short one-acts. He is adapting Hamlet utilizing experimental technique that employs building and breaking absurdist norms; this is utilized to criticize the Bard's deliberate decision to present Ophelia and Gertrude as incompetant human beings. His current research under the brilliant mentorship of Dr. Michael Ariel at Saint Louis University's School of Medicine centers on in situ hybridization of cerebellum. He is currently awaiting the beginning of his fifth year at Saint Louis University, where he is a Duel Degree Candidate for a BS in Cell Biology and Physiology and a BA in Theatre with Directing Emphasis. He might eventually go to medical school. 

Russian Language & Culture Consultant: Katy Keating

Katy is an actor currently living in Saint Louis. Most recently, she played Rosalind in As You Like It, directed by Nancy Bell, at Saint Louis University Theatre. This past year, she was also seen playing Agnes in She Kills Monsters, directed by Tom Martin, at Saint Louis University Theatre. In addition to acting, she is also studying to be a vocal/dialect coach. Last fall, she was the dialect coach for Chancers at Max and Louie Productions, and for The Diary of Anne Frank at The New Jewish Theatre. She has also played Hero in Pendant Productions' Much Ado About Nothing, and Gratiano in Othello. Those podcasts can be found on her website ( This summer, she will be performing in OR WHAT YOU WILL at the St. Louis Fringe Festival with her company, Poor Monsters, of which she is a founder.

Managing Director, ERA: Kevin Arkell

Kevin Arkell joined ERA in the fall of 2013, taking on the responsibilities of Managing Director. He oversees ERA's financial and marketing activities. Outside of ERA, Kevin Arkell is an Assistant Brand Manager with Nestle Purina, working on product development for the Friskies brand. He holds a BA in Philosophy from Skidmore College and an MBA from the Olin Business School at Washington University in St. Louis.

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