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Actors' Equity Approves In-Person Filming of MY LORD, WHAT A NIGHT at Orlando Shakes

My Lord, What a Night produced by Orlando Shakes in partnership with UCF will be available to stream February 3 - 14, 2021.

Actors' Equity Approves In-Person Filming of MY LORD, WHAT A NIGHT at Orlando Shakes

Inspired by a true friendship, Deborah Brevoort's My Lord, What a Night produced by Orlando Shakes in partnership with UCF will be available to stream February 3 - 14, 2021. This Video on Demand production of My Lord, What a Night is part of a National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere. Tickets (starting at $15) are available now by phone (407) 447-1700 ext. 1 or online at

Actors' Equity Association (AEA) has approved in-person filming (without an audience) of this Video on Demand production after reviewing Orlando Shakes' extensive health and safety plan that ensures the safest possible working conditions for all involved. The cast will film their performance on the set in the Goldman Theater at the Lowndes Shakespeare Center, while adhering to strict safety measures that Orlando Shakes has put in place. The theater's safety strategy includes 3 times per week COVID-19 testing, daily temperature checks, social distancing, and the presence of a trained Covid-19 Compliance Officer at all rehearsals and video shoots .

"This approval from Equity is a significant milestone for the theater," Managing Director Douglas Love-Ramos says. "The union has been advocating for the safety of their members during this pandemic and very few contracts were granted in the country. Now, with an expert plan in place, we are able to welcome actors and stage managers back to work, knowing we are protecting their health and providing a safer environment to cultivate art."

Risking scandal and controversy, iconic historical figures-with distinct approaches to facing inequality-grapple with overcoming injustice during a turbulent time in our nation's history. The World Premiere of Deborah Brevoort's bold, new script reveals the real untold story of a true friendship between German-born, Jewish scientist Albert Einstein and African American singer Marian Anderson. In 1937, when Anderson is denied a hotel room based on the color of her skin, Einstein invites her to stay in his home. From there, a foreshadowing conversation about racial politics opens up as great minds gather over tea and Swiss chocolate.

"Our production was originally intended to be produced in March 2020, but after our first dress rehearsal, , our theater had to close as we confronted the reality of this pandemic," Artistic Director Jim Helsinger says. "The fantastic set, lights and costumes that depicts Einstein's home and life have all been sitting in the heater all this time, waiting to be used. We are delighted to pick up where we left off and, and with the approval of AEA, bring our actors back to the theater to tell this compelling story."

Orlando Shakes' My Lord, What a Night stars:

  • Eric Zivot* as Albert Einstein. Previous Orlando Shakes credits include Ralph Waldo Emerson in Charm; Claudius in Hamlet; Parolles in All's Well That Ends Well; Malvolio in Twelfth Night; Gloucester in King Lear; Jaques in As You Like It; Macduff in Macbeth. Patrons may remember him as Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman at Mad Cow. Nationally and internationally he's worked with The American Conservatory Theater, Marin Shakespeare, Colorado Shakespeare, The Kingsman Shakespeare, The Stratford Festival of Canada, The Manitoba Theater Center, Winnipeg Jewish Theater, The Fountain Theater. Film and Television credits include JAG, The Alarmist, Two Voices, Looking for Lola, Babylon 5, Sunset Beach, and The Biggest Game in Town,which is now available on Amazon Prime.

  • Sheryl Carbonell* as Marian Anderson. Previous Orlando Shakes credits include Calpurnia in To Kill a Mockingbird and the understudy who performed Shakespeare's Cleopatra in Antony and Cleopatra. Classically trained singer, Sheryl sang professionally with the Orlando Opera Company until its doors closed. Since then, she began working in regional theatres, recently American Stage as Ruth Younger in A Raisin in the Sun and Mad Cow Theatre as Rose Maxson in Fences. She recently shot independent films and for network, LeBlanc and Riviera, as well as two commercials for Zaxby's and Mercury Insurance. To see her work and hear her sing visit

  • J.D. Sutton* as Abraham Flexner. Previous Orlando Shakes credits include Richard III, Much Ado About Nothing, The Trial of Ebenezer Scrooge, Nicholas Nickleby, and Oscar Hoffman in The Luckiest People. As a writer, his solo play as Thomas Jefferson, Twilight at Monticello, was the first script chosen for a PlayLab workshop, and has since been performed off-Broadway, and at venues throughout the "Original 13", including Philadelphia's historic Carpenters' Hall. His Jefferson & Jupiter, about the friendship between Jefferson and one of his slaves, was named Best Drama at 2016's Orlando Fringe Festival. Bartram's Travels, about 18th century botanist, explorer and artist William Bartram, has been performed throughout the southeast, and has been featured on PBS' Florida Frontiers.

  • Avis-Marie Barnes as Mary Church Terrell. Orlando theater credits include The Best of Enemies; Up The Ladder, Down the Slide; The Giver; and The Trayvon Martin Project. Film/TV credits include Jeepers Creepers, Waves, Greenleaf, Lodge 49, Atlanta, Stranger Things, and The Purge.

The artistic team includes Director Kel Haney***, Scenic and Lighting Designer Stephen Jones**, Costume Designer Denise R. Warner, Sound Designer Britt Sandusky, AEA Stage Manager Paige Gober*, AEA Assistant Stage Manager and Script Supervisor Anne Hering*, Video Production Director Jim Helsigner, Post-Production Manager Christian Knightly, Video Production Philip Lupo, Video Lighting Delonte Smith, Camera Casey J. Porter & Emerson Cooper, and Video Editor Fernanda Salviano.

Haney's recent credits include Julia Doolittle's Tell Them I'm Still Young (featuring Andre Braugher and Michele Pawk - American Theater Group), Haney/Comfort's The Elephant in Every Room I Enter (Next Door at New York Theater Workshop & La MaMa), Laura Maria Censabella's Paradise (featuring Grant Shaud - Luna Stage; Passage Theatre), Chris Cragin-Day's A Woman (59E59 -- world premiere), Sharyn Rothstein's A Good Farmer (Premiere - American Theater Group), Christopher Wall's The Inherent Sadness of Low-Lying Areas (World Premiere - New World Symphony, Miami), Foster Mom (Premiere Stages), and Quiara Alegria Hudes's Water by the Spoonful. She has directed/developed new work with Abingdon Theatre Company, The Amoralists, Ars Nova, Atlantic Theater Company, Cherry Lane, Keen Company, Labyrinth, The Lark, Ma-Yi, Naked Angels, New Dramatists, New Georges, Partial Comfort, Playwrights Realm, Rattlestick, Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater, Westport Country Playhouse, Williamstown & Working Theater. Also: MTC Directing Fellow, Lincoln Center Directors Lab, Mabou Mines Residency, Old Vic/New Voices Exchange and a member of Ensemble Studio Theatre. Ms. Haney also directed the critically acclaimed short films, I Am Them and Stay Close.

*Member of Actors' Equity Association
**Member of United Scenic Artists

***Member Society of Directors and Choreographers


For Video on Demand, patrons will receive a link and unique access code to a prerecorded video of the production. The performance may be watched at any time within the specified run dates. To learn more, please visit:



My Lord, What a Night costs $15 per person to stream. $10 for students.

My Lord, What a Night is sponsored by Parkway and Pat Strasberg.

My Lord, What a Night is produced at Orlando Shakes as a part of a National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere. Other partnering theaters are Contemporary American Theatre Festival (Shepherdstown) and Florida Studio Theatre. For more information please visit

Orlando Shakes is supported by United Arts of Central Florida, host of and This project is sponsored in part by the Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, the Florida Council on Arts and Culture, and the State of Florida.

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