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We are proud to announce the following recipients of the Fall 2023 CA$H Theatre grants. Learn more about CA$H Theatre.

CA$H Performs

CA$H Performs is a $5,000 grant that supports fully produced performances of theatre projects that are open to the public.

Aureen Almario

Bulong, meaning whisper in Tagalog, is an evening-length, multidisciplinary shadow puppet performance that explores the shadow lives of undocumented and hidden status Filipina women and children in America.

Dan Hoyle, Lisa Ramirez, Michael Moran, and Aldo Billingslea

FEAR RAGE HEAL CHANGE is a new piece of documentary theatre about the unlikely activists finding a way to push the country forward in the most difficult places. This new piece is being written and performed by Dan Hoyle based on immersive reporting in Florida, South Carolina, Georgia, and Missouri, and is being developed with and directed by Lisa Ramirez and Michael Socrates Moran, with dramaturgical consulting from Aldo Billingslea. FEAR RAGE HEAL CHANGE will be produced at The Marsh in 2024. 

Bryan Pangilinan

Larry the Musical, based on the book Journey for Justice: The Life of Larry Itliong, tells a Filipino American immigrant story. The musical covers Itliong’s life from his birth to his posthumous recognition, “Larry Itliong Day,” by the State of California in 2015. Larry organized and led protests for equal pay and dignified living conditions for farm and cannery workers throughout the West Coast and Alaska from the 1930s to when the UFW was created in 1966. The project will explore Itliong’s personal history and the struggles of Filipino and Mexican farmworkers, the violent racism they faced, and their win over the Delano grape growers after five years of boycotts and protests. Larry the Musical will be produced at Brava Theater in March-April 2024. 

Sixth Line Studios

Sixth Line Studios will be producing The Totalitarians at The I Can Do That Performance Venue in Danville, CA. This will be the company’s first attempt to produce progressive, envelope-pushing, brilliant work like that of Peter Sinn Nachtrieb in the Danville area.

Perla Violetta

Searching Empathy is an immersive, sensorial experience to educate and demystify immigration and unjust immigration policies, remove stigmas, eliminate misinformation, and create empathy and compassion towards immigrants. The piece is an immersive experience where actors and audience share their personal experiences and travel to different rooms that represent particular settings, such as a detention center, a desert cemetery, or the ocean. Each room contains a different artistic medium, such as black light, pantomime, musical theatre, dance, and film. Searching Empathy will be produced in October 2024.

CA$H Creates

CA$H Creates is a $2,500 grant that supports the development of artistic theatre projects or capacity-building projects not directly tied to a fully produced performance of a piece.

Elizabeth Carter

Carter is adapting the 1916 anti-lynching play Rachel by Angelina Weld Grimké, bringing this overlooked classic by a Black woman to the present and centering the playwright in the story. Using an Afrosurrealist lens and Black feminist thought, Carter will explore the multigenerational question around the choice of Black motherhood in the face of racism.

Doyle Ott and Julia Norton

Ott and Norton are developing When We Were Very Young, a circus opera based on the beloved books by A.A. Milne. The words are mostly Milne’s, teamed with original music and circus performance to create a genre-stretching show for family audiences. 

Conrad Panganiban

Panganiban is developing a full-length jukebox play with music, Julie & The Starmaker. He will be bringing in expert support to flesh out the themes of mental health in the Filipino American community, gentrification, and generational trauma, with a public reading in 2024.

Xinyuan Pu

Pu is developing A Flower Explodes, a bilingual history play about three generations of Chinese women in the same Shanghai longtang (residences centered on a lane) who shared intertwined lives in the politically turbulent years of late 1950s-60s. It highlights marginalized narratives of women’s participation in political movements and asks us how to move forward in difficult “choiceless” situations, and what price is worth paying for “change.” 

Lisa Marie Rollins

Rollins is developing The Bones, The Cards, The Crossroads, an experimental stage performance focused on cultural memory, Black diasporic gesture, and nuance in game culture, and will investigate the ways dominoes and spades crack open the magical spaces of possibility at the crossroads through table dynamics, shit-talking, partner communication, and decision making as opening or closing off possibility for survival at the table and beyond. 

Natacha Ruck

Ruck is developing a new hour-long autobiographical solo show exploring gender roles, women’s empowerment, and artistic creation through the lens of her experience as a French interpreter for world-renowned directors at international film festivals in San Francisco and Toronto.

Sanjit Sengupta

Sengupta is developing Turbulence, a love story between a Hindu single mother, Rima, and a younger Muslim man, Salim, who meet on a flight from Mumbai to San Francisco. The script documents their turbulent relationship over six years and two continents, and their struggles with family opposition, political ideologies, and personal goals. 

CA$H Sustains

CA$H Sustains is a $5,000 grant that provides general operating support for small companies that develop and/or produce theatre in the Bay Area.

Formerly Incarcerated People’s Performance Project, Oakland

The Formerly Incarcerated People’s Performance Project (FIPPP) believes that the power of storytelling and sharing experiences from marginalized communities is transformative. We tell the overlooked, powerful, individual stories of the formerly incarcerated around the experience of prison, sharing their wisdom with the goal of changing the world for the better one story at a time. 

La Lengua Teatro en Español, San Francisco

La Lengua Teatro en Español is an emergent theater company based in San Francisco with an Artistic Residence at Brava Theater. They produce Latinx and Latin American plays in Spanish (with English supertitles) and commission new plays, such as Las Azurduy in 2022 and all the pieces developed during their “Decolonization Stories” playwright residency, which began in 2022. La Lengua Teatro en Español wants to contribute to normalizing the use of languages other than English in the performing arts, creating spaces for untold stories in Spanish and Native languages.

Pinecones and Portals Hiking Theater Company, Berkeley

Pinecones and Portals Hiking Theater Company creates high-quality, immersive theatre in local parks for Bay Area children and their families. They create roving performances, each scene motivating the audience to journey to the next scene, the whole show taking place throughout the park.

Fall 2023 CA$H Panelists

Eric Avery (they/he), CA$H Sustains

Eric Avery is an interdisciplinary artist with over fifteen years of professional experience in theatre, immersive performance, and community-based art. Avery currently serves as a co-Artistic Director for Alternative Theater Ensemble.  

Syr Beker (they/them), CA$H Sustains

Syr Beker is a storyteller, producer, and immersive experience creator in search of the queer love language of climate change. They are the co-founder and co-Artistic Director of Queer Cat Productions (2018-2023), creating accessible, consent-forward, immersive experiences that leave our audience more connected.  

Norman Gee (he/him), CA$H Sustains

Norman Gee is Artistic Director of Oakland Public Theater, and Associate Producer with PlayGround-SF. He recently played Leonato in Much Ado About Nothing with Sparc/Livermore, traveled last spring to France in HOME with Word for Word, and before that did Meet John Doe and Great Expectations at San Jose Stage. Last year Norman performed Water By The Spoonful at SF Playhouse, and the SF Mime Troupe’s Back To The Way Things Were. Norman looks forward to appearing next year with A.C.T., and directing a new work celebrating the James Baldwin Centennial. More info at 

Aidaa Peerzada (she/her), CA$H Creates and Performs 

Aidaa Peerzada is a performer, playwright and arts administrator who grew up between Baltimore, MD and Lahore, Pakistan. Aidaa is part of the artistic staff at the SF Bay Area Theatre Co, where she leads audience outreach and artistic development projects like SFBATCO’s Creators Lab. Her plays have been developed at SFBATCO, Catalyst (C3T), Prop Thtr, Northern Sky Theatre, and currently with the Playwrights Foundation. As an actor, Aidaa has performed with Magic Theatre, Marin Theatre, Word For Word, Pittsburgh Public, Illinois Shakespeare, Utah Shakespeare, Steppenwolf, American Players Theatre, and Quantum Theatre. Aidaa studied at the Baltimore School for the Arts and went on to receive her BFA in Drama from Carnegie Mellon.

Evelyn Jean Pine (she/her), CA$H Creates and Performs

Evelyn Jean Pine is a PlayGround Resident Playwright and a June Ann Baker Prize winner. Her play Oakland 1982: You, Me, and Rickey is the first play published in the baseball journal, The Twin Bill. Her play Freeloader in the House of Love won the “Most Compelling Story” Prize at Boulder Fringe. Her short opera nada, written with Norweigian composer Tze Yeung Ho, premiered at the 2022 Stencils Festival. Her comedy 7 Secrets of Teaching Online was the hit of Theatre 33’s 2022 New Works Festival in Salem, OR. 

Tim Redmond (he/him), CA$H Sustains

Tim Redmond is an actor and has performed with many companies in his Bay Area career, including Berkeley Rep, CenterREP, CentralWorks, Impact Theatre, Oakland Theatre Project, San Francisco Playhouse, Shakespeare Napa Valley, Shotgun Players, Symmetry Theatre, TheatreWorks, TheatreFirst, and ZSpace, among others. Regional credits include Bailiwick Repertory Theatre (Chicago) and Relentless Theatre Company and South Coast Repertory (Los Angeles). 

Laura Sheppard (she/her), CA$H Sustains

Laura Sheppard is co-artistic director of Yiddish Theatre Ensemble (YTE), and a professionally trained actor. She was producer of YTE’s 2023 production of Between Worlds: Based on the Life and Poetry of Irena Klepfisz, the acclaimed online production of God of Vengeance, and the musical Di Megileh of Itzik Manger. In 2022, YTE co-produced the award-winning production of Indecent with the San Francisco Playhouse. Laura’s theatrical work includes Still Life with (Gertrude) Stein which toured internationally and Paris Portraits featured at the Contemporary Jewish Museum and Marine’s Memorial Theatre. She is Director of Events at San Francisco’s historic Mechanics’ Institute. 

Dr. Anne W. Smith, DPA (she/her), CA$H Creates and Performs 

Dr. Smith is the immediate past board president for Theatre Bay Area. She is a leader in arts administration as an advocate, arts educator, arts professional, board member, planning and organizational development consultant, professor, and arts educator connected to interests locally, nationally, and internationally. Her leadership positions include the California Arts Council, San Francisco Arts Commission, ODC Dance, Book Club of California, SFCenter for the Book, and San Francisco Circus Center. Dr. Smith is a current board member for Chanticleer, Medical Clown Project, St Paul’s Towers Residents Association, and Fountain Project Foundation, and is the board co-chair of Arts Forum and the Commonwealth Club of California. Dr. Smith is currently Professor of Practice adjunct at Ageno School of Business at Golden Gate University and at Shenandoah University, Virginia. 

Dawn Monique Williams (she/her), CA$H Creates and Performs

Dawn Monique Williams served four years as Associate Artistic Director of Aurora Theatre Company and was the Artistic Associate and a resident artist at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival for six seasons before that. Williams is a nationally celebrated director with an MA in Dramatic Literature, an MFA in Directing, and advanced certificates in Film Studies and Screenwriting. Her first book of poetry, Clothed in My Right Mind, was published in 2023. She serves on the Board of Directors for Theatre Bay Area and the Playwrights’ Foundation and sits on the Drama League National Directors Council. Dawn is a proud member of SDC.