ROMEO AND JULIET Comes To Queens For Rude Grooms' Second Annual Free Commons Series

By: Jul. 01, 2019

ROMEO AND JULIET Comes To Queens For Rude Grooms' Second Annual Free Commons Series

Queens-based Rude Grooms announced today initial details for the company's second annual free summer production touring parks and art spaces in Astoria and Long Island City: William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, led by actor-manager Montgomery Sutton (Twelfth Night at Shakespeare's Globe) and produced in partnership with Long Island City Artists at the Plaxall Gallery and the Astoria Park Alliance and is made possible (in part) by the Queens Council on the Arts with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

All performances are free and open to the public. The show performs at the Plaxall Gallery, Astoria Park, Queensbridge Park, and Rainey Park. All performances are at 6:30pm, with additional 1:30pm matinees indoors at the Plaxall Gallery on Sundays. Reservations are highly encouraged are required and for the preferred seating areas; Rude Grooms patrons ( receive access to even better seating areas; VIP seating reservations and other perks will be available in the coming weeks as a part of the production's crowdfunding campaign. Sign up for Rude Grooms' mailing list at to be notified when online reservations and the crowdfunding campaign launch.

In addition to Sutton, The Acting Company will include Rude Grooms Sharers Daniel Kemper (The Limit of the Tongue with The Daughter's Collective) and Deb Radloff (Caucasian Chalk Circle at Classic Stage Company), associate Laura Piccoli (Law & Order: SVU), alongside guest artists Elisabeth Ahrens (Company Member, The Queen's Company), Jerome Harmann Hardeman (Dirty Dancing national tour), Dhruv Iyengar (As You Like It at Shakespeare Dallas), Rachel Schmeling (Jeanette at the Eugene O'Neil Theater Center), Casterline Villar (Pedro Animal se Enamora with Teatro SEA) and acting apprentices Milagros Bobier and Carroll Herring.

Brian Demar Jones is Associate Director, Sara Slagle is the Production Designer, Kaitlyn Farley and Jared Kirby of New York Combat for Stage & Screen are the Fight Directors, Kara Arena is the Composer, Bridget Bose is the Dance Choreographer, Laura Piccoli is the Costume Designer, and Jessica LaTour is Associate Producer.

Actor-Manager and Rude Grooms' Master of the Revels Montgomery Sutton says "Encountering Romeo and Juliet as a teenager cracked Shakespeare open for me for the first time. Its enduring resonance with audiences young and old alike reconnects us to our shared humanity, an impulse which is at the core of our Commons Series: free performances of timeless stories in active public spaces to strengthen our Queens community through cultural engagement."

"The show is a 90-minute, family-friendly romp with live acoustic music that features award-winning professional artists and is completely free. By activating familiar spaces in new ways and bringing world-class performers out into our communities, our Commons Series is an act of shared imagination that tears down barriers of entry into artistic programming, barriers between actor and audience, and barriers between audience members themselves."

The production starts previews on Wednesday, August 14 and plays through Sunday, August 25 with opening night on Friday, August 16, playing Wednesdays in Astoria's Rainey Park, Thursdays in Long Island City's Queensbridge Park, Fridays and Saturdays in Astoria's Astoria Park, and Sundays at Long Island City's Plaxall Gallery.

Rude Grooms is a Queens-based Startup Theatre Experiment rooted in the Elizabethan Tradition: we build cutting-edge theatrical experiences to provoke, inspire, & entertain, and we train Actor-Creators to tell their stories more clearly, bravely, & impulsively.

Elisabeth Ahrens (Montague, Peter, Apothecary). OFF-OFF BROADWAY: Taming of the Shrew, Sir Patient Fancy, As You Like It (The Queens Company); You and I, Within The Law (Metropolitan Playhouse); The Winter's Tale, Macbeth (South Brooklyn Shakespeare); Julius Caesar (Old Hat Theater Company); The Elephant Man (The Gallery Players); The Tempest, Love's Labour's Lost, Hamlet, Comedy of Errors (Hip to Hip Theater Company). REGIONAL: The Imaginary Invalid, The Giver, The Winter's Tale (Asolo Repertory Theatre). IG: @elisabeth.ahrens

Kara Arena (Master of Music) RUDE GROOMS: Much Ado About Nothing (composer), Twelfth Night (Musical Guest). REGIONAL: The Winter's Tale with Seven Stages Shakespeare Company (Perdita/Composer). NYC based actor/ singer-songwriter, graduate of The Boston Conservatory at Berklee. IG: @karaarena

Milagros Bobier (Acting Apprentice) Recent AMDA graduate. A Midsummer Night's Dream (Juneberry Collective), Anna In The Tropics, Den of Thieves, The Clean House, Sunday On the Rocks (AMDA) Romeo & Juliet (Stella Adler Studio). IG: @mila_bobier

Bridget Bose (dance choreographer). RUDE GROOMS: Twelfth Night, The Witch of Edmonton. Notable Credits: American Ballet Theatres Le Corsiare, circus show RED Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, Bollywood show Mystic India and TV show Just Dance Live UP NEXT: Guilty Pleasures Cabaret (NYC & tour) Website:; Twitter: @gpcabaret; IG: @gpcabaret.

Kaitlyn Farley (Fight Director) THEATRE: Antony & Cleopatra, Hamlet (Hudson Warehouse Theatre); Prospect Park (APT Theatre); Henry V (American Theatre of Actors); Sherlock Holmes The Final Problem, Neverwhere (Red Monkey Theatre); FILM: M.A.S.K, Pebble Beach, The Grieving Jedi. Website:, Twitter: @kat_farley IG @_kaitlynfarley

Jared Kirby (Fight Director) Jared Kirby has created fights for Off-Broadway, Regional and International productions. OFF-BROADWAY: Switzerland (59E59), Hamlet (Classic Stage Company); Company (Lucille Lortel Theatre and National tours with the New Vic Theatre of London); Other memorable credits include: Titus Andronicus, Hamlet, Midsummer Night's Dream, Cyrano, Romeo & Juliet, Merry Wives, Taming of the Shrew, Comedy of Errors, Richard III, The Rover, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), King Lear, and The Three Musketeers. For a full list of credits visit Twitter: @jaredkirby IG: @jaredmkirby

Carroll Herring (Acting Apprentice). OFF-BROADWAY: My Princess Diana (Alvin Ailey Center); The Taming of The Shrew (The Kraine Theater); REGIONAL: Encore!! National Tour (Chamber Theatre Productions), The Winters Tale, A Midsummer Night's Dream (Trinity Shakespeare). FILM/TV: Evil Lives Here. Website:; Twitter: @carroll_herring; IG: @theyseemecarrolling.

Dhruv Iyengar (Romeo) RUDE GROOMS: Twelfth Night, Much Ado About Nothing. REGIONAL: As You Like It (Shakespeare Dallas), The Kid Thing (Ithaca College), The Taming of the Shrew (Ithaca Shakespeare Company), This is Our Youth (Ithaca College), Boy (Ithaca College), Othello (Junior Players/Shakespeare Dallas). He trained for the past year and a half in the BFA Acting program at Ithaca College, but will be moving to the United Kingdom to continue his training at the prestigious London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. Website:; IG: @dhruviyengar

Daniel Kemper (Master of Casting & Company Management, Friar Laurence) RUDE GROOMS: Much Ado About Nothing. OFF BROADWAY: Den of Thieves (Duende Theatre Group), Smoke 'em If You Got 'em (Various Roles). REGIONAL: The Limit of the Tongue (The Daughter's Collective), Look Back in Anger (The Old Stone House). Website:; Twitter & IG: @TheDanielKemper

New York Combat for Screen & Stage (Fight Direction) NYCSS has created fights for Off-Broadway, Regional and International productions. OFF-BROADWAY: Switzerland (59E59), Hamlet (Classic Stage Company); Company (Lucille Lortel Theatre) NATIONAL TOURS: Hamlet, Canterbury Tales, Hunchback of Notre Dame, Dracula (New Vic Theatre of London). For more details: On this production fights were created by Jared Kirby & Kaitlyn Farley. For a full list of credits visit Twitter: @jaredkirby IG: @jaredmkirby and Twitter: @kat_farley IG @_kaitlynfarley

Laura Piccoli (Associate Artist, Costume Designer, Benvolio). RUDE GROOMS: Twelfth Night, Much Ado About Nothing. NEW YORK: The Glass Menagerie (Pigeonholed Theater Co.); The Shrew (Seven Stages Shakespeare, ShakesBEERience); The Tempest (Seven Stages Shakespeare, ShakesBEERience); Tape (Bridge Theatre). FILM/TV/NEW MEDIA: Law and Order: SVU; Skindiving; Skye. Website:

Deb Radloff (Master of Patron Engagement, Lady Capulet/Sampson/Friar John) RUDE GROOMS: Twelfth Night, The Witch of Edmonton, Much Ado About Nothing. OFF-BROADWAY: Caucasian Chalk Circle (Classic Stage Company); OFF-OFF: Much ADO About Nothing (M.O.D theatre), Mother Knows Best (Best Emerging Solo Artist, United Solo Theatre festival) REGIONAL: Last of the Red Hot Lovers (Northern Stage); Richard III, Death of a Salesman (The Old Globe). NEW MEDIA: Micro musical show: The New Peggy, The Pulp Tales Of Gwendolyn Gween. MFA, The Old Globe/USD. Rep. by the amazing folx at Professional Artists. IG: @debfindingherwin

Rachel Schmeling (Juliet). OFF-BROADWAY: Julius Caesar (Shakespeare in the Park/The Public Theatre); Hurricane Sleep (IATI Theater and the box collective); Medea (Titan Theatre Company), Theater for the New City, Hedgepig Ensemble Theatre, Honey Dipped Productions. REGIONAL: Jeanette (Eugene O'Neil Theater Center), Twelfth Night (North Dakota Shakespeare), Framed (Center for the Arts at Kayenta), New Jersey Repertory Theatre. Website:; IG: @rachelmschmeling.

Sara Slagle (Production Designer): OFF-BROADWAY: Long Story Short (59E59). OOB: Day in the Death of Joe Egg; The Baltimore Waltz; An Appeal to the Woman of the House; The Butter and Egg Man; Good Boys and True; And Miss Reardon Drinks a Little (NYIT Nomination, Outstanding Innovative Design); We Are a Masterpiece; Mary, Mary (Retro Productions Theater Company). Lickspittles Buttonholers and Damned Pernicious Go-Betweens (Boomerang Theatre Co.). Marian, or the True Tale of Robin Hood (Flux Theatre Ensemble). Montgomery Sutton's Your Colonel (Performed at Metropolitan Playhouse).

Montgomery Sutton (Actor-Manager, Prince/Mercutio/Paris). RUDE GROOMS: Twelfth Night, The Witch of Edmonton, Much Ado About Nothing. LONDON: Twelfth Night (Shakespeare's Globe); OFF-BROADWAY: A Midsummer Night's Dream (New York Classical Theatre); REGIONAL: Shakespeare in Love (Shakespeare Dallas); Henry V (Cape Fear Regional Theatre); The Winter's Tale (Seven Stages Shakespeare); Love's Labours Lost, King Lear, Richard III, Measure for Measure (Trinity Shakespeare); Florida Studio Theatre, Second Thought Theatre, Theatre Three, Uptown Players, Circle Theatre. FILM/TV/NEW MEDIA: 1865, Trouble with Women, Mysteries at the Museum. Website:; Twitter & IG: @montgomerysutto

Casterline Villar (Actor-Tybalt/Nurse/Watch 3). OFF-BROADWAY: Troilus and Cressida (St. Marks Theatre), Pedro animal se Enamora (Teatro SEA). REGIONAL: Character Quiz Show (Windish Music & Production at Hersheypark). EDUCATIONAL: Much Ado About Nothing, Twelfth Night, Coriolanus (Stella Adler Studio of Acting), James and the Giant Peach (SUNY Fredonia), Medea (Columbia University), Eurydice, Women of Manhattan, 12 Angry Jurors (The Performing Arts Company). FILM/TV/NEW MEDIA: Normal People Explain Things To Me (Pink Elephant Productions), Not So Beautiful (J. Brown Productions), Kilos (Student Film), Helpless (Independent Project). UP NEXT: Zerospace at Hotel Pennsylvania. Instagram & Twitter: @casterlineeee


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