Bios

Oleh: czechadmin

Vit Horejs

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Artistic Director
VÍT HOŘEJŠ (pronounced Horzaysh) studied traditional puppetry as a child and theatre as an adult in Prague. He came to New York in 1979 and toured the world with Ta Fantastika Black Light Theatre during the ’80s. In 1984 Vít found a treasure trove of 69 marionettes, aged 80 to 180, at Jan Hus Church in Manhattan. He ultimately founded the Czechoslovak-American Marionette Theatre (CAMT) in 1990 with other émigrés from Prague and has been its artistic director ever since. Vít has translated, written, adapted and directed a dozen plays for CAMT. Recently, he directed Twelfth Night at La MaMa E.T.C. and he wrote and directed The Very Sad Story of Ethel & Julius at Theater for the New City (Best Director nomination from Innovative Theatre Awards). 

Vít has performed on stage, in films and on TV. On screen, he was Krojack in Woody Allen’s Don’t Drink the Water. Published works include Twelve Iron Sandals (Prentice-Hall, 1985), Pig and Bear (Four Winds/Macmillan, 1989, Dutch translation, 1990) and an English translation of the Czech puppet play Faust (Dilia Press, Prague, 1993). He co-produced an award-winning documentary film about Czech puppetry, Faust on a String, and wrote the lead essay for Czechoslovak-American Puppetry (GOH Productions, 1994). He has received commissioning grants from the Jim Henson Foundation, the Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust, the National Foundation for Jewish Culture, and Columbia University.


Theresa Linnihan

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Associate Artistic Director
Theresa Linnihan has played varied parts with CAMT for fifteen years and toured with the company to Turkey, Pakistan, and Prague. She’s played varied roles: the Czech everyman and clown Kašpárek, Polonius, a prince, a princess, rebels from Czech and American history, Ethel Rosenberg, and a pigeon. A producer and designer, she also creates puppet pageants and parades at various Brooklyn sites for The Puppeteers Cooperative and works with Lincoln Center Out of Doors. She manages The New York Puppet Library at Brooklyn College and teaches puppetry and improvisation.

Deborah Beshaw-Farrell

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Puppeteer, Performer
Deborah Beshaw-Farrell  is a puppeteer and cabaret performer residing in Brooklyn.  Her roles in CAMT productions include Perl in Golem; Mailbox, Mrs. Shtern, Mrs. Čížková, and Mrs. Čivrná in Mr. M.; Valentine, Sir Toby, Olivia, and Antonio in Twelfth Night; Tessie in The Very Sad Story of Ethel & Julius; Peter Minuit and others in Once There Was a Village; Blond Singer, Jarmila, and Blanka in The Bass Saxophone; Gertrude, Horatio, Ophelia, and Fortinbras’ Army (all of it) in Hamlet; the Narrator and the Queen in Twelve Iron Sandals; Mefistofl in Faust; a dancing puppeteer in The Prose of the Transsiberian; the Sufferyng Countess Jenovéfa in The White Doe, and Ester in Queen Ester. Other favorite performances include The Napier Project for the Mabou Mines Artist in Residence Project and KafKa with the Drama of Works. Deborah works regularly with Puppeteers’ Cooperative, and she much enjoyed working with her sister, Michelle, on Sheep Musing in the Valley of Sleeping Dogs at the Labapalooza! Mini Festival of New Puppet Theatre from the Lab at St. Ann’s Warehouse in June of 2011.

Michelle Beshaw

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Puppeteer, Performer
Brooklyn Theatre Artist, Designer, Writer, Performer and Storyteller. I’ve enjoyed producing, directing, designing and performing in venues from La MaMa and Mabou Mines, to city parks, monuments, community centers, street corners, stairwells and broom closets. This is my laboratory/playground, a place to show some of my work and try some new things.

Jonny Clockworks

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Puppeteer, Performer
Jonny Clockworks is the stage name of puppeteer Jonathan Edward Cross. He’s also the Artistic Director of The Cosmic Bicycle Theatre.  Early productions included  interpretations of S.I. Witkiewitz’s The Madman and The Nun and Molière’s The Miser. He also debuted an original production, Stories From the Four Corners of The Wheel.  In 1995, Cross relocated to New York City, where he opened The ClockWorks Experimental Puppet Theatre. Cultivating a distinctive style, utilizing found objects and detritus as the basis for his creations, Cross developed and performed such works as “The Mechanical”; “The Marriage of Mother Earth and Father Sky”; “NetherWorld, A Morality Vaudeville”; “The Alchemical Work”; and “Dr. Kronopolis and the TimeKeeper Chronicles- A Space Opera”.  Cross’s other notable credits include working for Puppet Artist/Director Ralph Lee; a collaboration with musician Vic Chesnutt; performing as a member of the company of HEADS, directed by Danny Mydlack; and working in television as a puppeteer for such shows asDisney’s The Book of Pooh and Court TV’s Smoking Gun TV.  His work has also appeared as bumpers and promos on both MTV and MTV2.  He was featured on two episodes of theDiscovery Channel’s Oddities, and in June 2012, he was commissioned by singer Norah Jones to create a puppet show accompanying the release of her album Little Broken Hearts.

Alan Barnes Netherton

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Puppeteer, Performer
Alan Barnes Netherton is from the hills of Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Missouri. He received a B.A. in theater from Oklahoma State University, where he also studied poetry and was introduced to puppetry. Alan lived briefly in Santa Monica, California, then moved to Westfield, New York, to tour with Das Puppenspiel Puppet Theatre as an actor/puppeteer. He ultimately relocated to Brooklyn to pursue gainful employment in the arts, and he landed the role of Danny in CAMT’s The Bass Saxophone. In his second appearance with CAMT, he was Peter Stuyvesant and Czech Student in Once There Was a Village.  In <em “mso-bidi-font-style:=”” normal”=””>The Very Sad Story of Ethel & Julius, he appeared as Ethel’s Youngest Brother Doovey and as Thomas Alva Edison and in Golem as Rabbi Löw

Steven Ryan

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Puppeteer, Performer, Videographer
Steven Ryan is a New York-based television and video producer and performer who has worked on both sides of the camera, front of house, back stage, and on and off the casting couch. His work runs the gambit of television, film, stage plays, musicals, puppetry, air guitar, cabaret, performance art, opera, writing, directing, producing, improvisation, and impersonating ’70s rock personality Meat Loaf.

Ronny Wasserstrom

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Puppeteer, Performer
Ronny Wasserstrom is a lifelong Brooklynite who  graduated from the High School of Music and Art and NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. He is also a graduate of Puppetworks, where his marionette-wrangling career began. Recently, he puppeteered for The Phantom Limb Company as Daniel Webster in Ping Chong’s The Devil You Know and for The Berkeley Repertory Theater in California in the world premiere of Lemony Snicket’s The Composer is Dead. His first roles for CAMT were the Blind Chess Player and other parts in The Bass Saxophone. Since then, he has played Juan the Barber, Innkeeper, Major-General Gouverneur Warren and Adam Purple in Once There Was a Village; King Ahasverus in The Historye of Queen Ester; DA Saypol, Harry Rosenberg, and Rabbi Irving Koslowe in The Very Sad Story of Ethel & Julius; a puppeteer in Revolution!, Mr. M. in Mr. M.  and Canto in Golem.  In 2008, Ronny ventured boldly into the realm of street performance—which led to the founding of Playdate Puppets, a company that provides entertainment for parties and events. Playdate Puppets creates an interactive environment where marionettes and people can  comfortably comingle  as a single community.