Shawna Franks is a graduate of The Theatre School at DePaul University. She began acting in Chicago, where she originated the role of Dottie in Killer Joe by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tracy Letts. Shawna performed this role at The Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh, The Bush Theatre in London and The Vaudeville Theatre on London’s West End. She has also appeared onstage in Dublin and Los Angeles. In 2006, she founded Space 55, where she has produced and appeared in numerous productions.
email Shawna at ShawnaFranks@Space55.org
Associate Artistic Director
Michelle is a native of the Midwest, but now calls Arizona her home. She dabbles in singing, teaching, dancing poorly and knitting. Michelle is a graduate of Arizona State University’s Theatre for Youth MFA program. Her thesis project, Breaking the Silence, was an original play based on interviews with youth in treatment facilities. Michelle has taught for Free Arts of Arizona, Phoenix Theatre, East Valley Children’s Theatre and PB&J Theatre Company in Tucson. She’s a relatively organized person and likes to know what’s going on, so she finds comfort in managing the stage.
email Michelle at MichelleKable@space55.org
Richard Briggs first appeared at Space 55 Theater Ensemble in the 2008 10 Min Play Showcase, and his most recent appearance was in The Seduction of Almighty God by the Boy Priest Loftus in 2009. Other memorable Space 55 credits include Ubu Roi, Untitled, and The Bakers of Lakewood. Richard received his Bachelor’s degree in Acting from California State University, Bakersfield where he is also a founding member of The Empty Space Theater Company. Richard or Dickie as he is known to his family and friends is excited and honored to have found a home here at Space 55.
Email Richard at RichardBriggs@space55.org
Kevin is an artist, performer, and Phoenix Discordian. He is the Technical Director for Space 55 Theatre and an ensemble member. Kevin currently plays the title role of Hollis in Hollis’ Traveling Treehouse and Dance Party, as well as serving as co-writer for the show. Kevin has has served as Technical Director for Space 55 on many productions including Night of the Chicken 2: The Rise of Aunt Lulu, Munched, and aided in The Unhappiness Plays at the New York International Fringe Festival. He sometimes dresses as an evil wizard, and plays the ukulele.
Email Kevin at email@example.com
Kim Porter is a playwright, performer, dramaturg and educator who currently writes and teaches in Phoenix, Arizona. Porter’s critically acclaimed plays have won a variety of awards for numerous productions in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego and Phoenix. Most recently her play Munched won the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle award, The LA WEEKLY award and the McDonald Award for Playwriting excellence. As an actor, Porter has performed in Texas, California and Arizona for the last 25 years. Over the last 15 years Porter has developed and/or directed dozens of solo-plays for many well-respected solo performers. In the 25 years that Porter has worked in professional theatre, she’s done almost every job a person can do in theatre. Porter currently balances teaching playwriting and solo-performance at Space 55 with writing her own plays and screenplays. In 2011 Porter was the recipient of the Phoenix New Times Big Brain Award.
Ashley Naftule dropped out of college to strike it rich as a writer/performer. He’s a playwright, a poet, a performance artist and puppeteer. He considers himself to be quite good at two of those roles, and not-so-good at the other two, but is modest enough to let others be the judge of which is which. After taking writing and solo performing classes with Kim Porter, he wrote and performed a one-man show, “As Above, So Below” at the 2010 Phoenix Fringe Festival. and is one of the curators of Space55′s “Down-Lo Solo” series. He also helps write and produce “Hollis’s Traveling Treehouse” and is a member of the “What The Fuck Variety Hour” and “Arcana Cabaret” shows. When he isn’t living the good life onstage at Space55, he can be found at local open mics, poetry slams, dance clubs, burlesque nights, all-ages rock shows, karaoke bars and black masses. Sometimes he can be found doing those things in drag. His only weakness is seafood. He credits all of his success to the deities Eris and Ganesh.
Since 1998 Leslie has performed and written a series of improvisational and rehearsed performance art pieces. As a solo performer, one of Leslie’s goals is to emotionally reveal herself to an audience, who in turn reveal themselves to her. Leslie’s serves as the mastermind behind the WTF Variety Hour, and she heavily contributes to Hollis’ Tree House and Dance Party. In the past, she has been seen at the Mars Art Gallery, Metropophobobia, Theatre Of Note in Los Angeles, Sanctuary Dance Club, The Lodge, Paper Heart Gallery, Modified Arts, Trunk Space, Firehouse and, of course, at Space 55 where she performed in two theatrical productions, “Night Of The Chicken Part 2: The Rise Of Aunt Lulu”, as well as “Australia”.
Carrie is a lost child masquerading as an artist, writer, runner, and hiker. She fell into theatre completely by accident when a friend talked her into taking a playwriting class just for fun, and hasn’t looked back since. Carrie has been a proud member of the Space 55 playwright’s group since 2008, and is extremely grateful for the support she receives from her fellow writers. She currently writes and performs on-stage foley effects for the Night of the Chicken radio play series.