Previews: BONES BRIGADE at CVRep


By: Nov. 26, 2023
Previews: BONES BRIGADE at CVRep

COACHELLA VALLEY REPERTORY has announced casting for its World Premiere production of SUMMER SESSION WITH THE BONES BRIGADE, a dramatic original work by playwright KIRBY FIELDS. Adam Karsten, CVRep Executive Artistic Director, is directing SUMMER SESSION WITH THE BONES BRIGADE. Karsten said, “Kirby Fields has created a play that is set in our time, in today’s culture, and examines feelings and personal struggles that are timeless. We have assembled a cast of extraordinarily talented young actors and actresses who can relate to the circumstances of the story, bring authenticity to their characters, and reveal the heart of SUMMER SESSION.”

The Bones Brigade: Shane (BONALE FAMBRINI) is the unofficial leader of the group; Heath (ETHAN DAVID ZEPH) prides himself on being an unrepentant badass; Lee (Alex Michell) takes pictures compulsively with his Polaroid in order to feel close to his recently deceased father; DK (AKIYO KOMATSU) has just moved back to town and desperately wants to transcend his reputation as a “poser”;  Loralai (KEELEY KARSTEN) fears new experiences so much that she fabricates an overbearing mother to shield her from any decisions of her own; and Sid (MADELEINE D. HALL), who tries to live down to her reputation, with disastrous results. 

SUMMER SESSION WITH THE BONES BRIGADE is being directed by Adam Karsten, with set design by Jimmy Cuomo, video designs by Nick Wass, costumes by Emma Bibo, and lighting design by Moira Wilkie Whitaker. Stage manager is John M. Galo and movement director/choreographer is Karen Sieber.

SUMMER SESSION WITH THE BONES BRIGADE was selected for production from among the entries in CVRep’s first ORIGINS: NEW WORKS PROGRAM. Karsten said, "Origins was created to give playwrights opportunities to innovate, experiment and stretch their creative muscles. We want CVRep to be a recognized source for meaningful new works with contemporary settings and language. We anticipate that many of our new works - including Summer Session - will travel widely to theaters from the Coachella Valley to New York City.”

The play is set in the American Midwest in the summer of 1988. The play tells the story of four teenage skateboarders and their two female friends. When one of the group mysteriously disappears after a memorable July 4 skate session, the gang fears the worst and directs their feelings of guilt and shame against one another. The circumstances surrounding the mystery are complicated and strain their relationships as they sort through their confusion and feelings.

SUMMER SESSION WITH THE BONES BRIGADE runs December 6-17, 2023, with performances on Wednesdays & Saturdays at 2p.m. and 7 p.m., Thursdays & Fridays at 7 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Talkback Thursdays are held immediately after the second Thursday of each production, offering audience members the opportunity to discuss the plays with the directors and casts. Talkback Thursday for SUMMER SESSION WITH THE BONES BRIGADE will be December 14.

Single tickets are $50-$88 and are on sale now and available online at, by calling (760) 296-2966, ext. 115, or at the CVRep box office located at 68510 East Palm Canyon Dr., Cathedral City. Box office hours are Tuesday-Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and two hours prior to performances. Group tickets are available and can be arranged by calling the box office. In order to better serve audiences.

The CVRep 2023-2024 Season is possible only because of the generous support of the following Season Sponsors: Eigh4Nine, Barbara Fremont, Sheila Harbet and Elissa Hapner, David Hood and George Sellers, Peggy Jacobs, John Monahan, Willie Rhine, Andrew van Niekerk, Willie’s, and Whittier Trust. 

Coachella Valley Repertory expresses its appreciation to The Sheri and Les Biller Family Foundation, Erica Hiller Carpenter, Nancy and Tom Cunningham, Walter Gendell and Jack Fitzsimmons, and Don Lupinetti. KGAY Is our Media Sponsor.


Previews: BONES BRIGADE at CVRep

Adam Karsten – CVRep Executive Artistic Director, Director of Summer Session With The Bones Brigade

In addition to being Coachella Valley Repertory’s executive artistic director, Adam Karsten is an award-winning director for stage and screen. He has earned a reputation for the creation of stylistic works and defined concepts. While directing and producing works for the Emmy™ Award-winning performing arts series, “Live From Lincoln Center” and the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), Karsten’s projects, programs, films, and documentaries have aired nationally and internationally. He has directed musicals, plays and other theatrical works Off-Broadway and regionally as well as touring productions as well as many Broadway workshops.

Previews: BONES BRIGADE at CVRep

KIRBY FIELDS – Playwright

Kirby Fields is the Artistic Director of University of Pennsylvania (UP) Theater Company. He has an MFA in Playwriting from Carnegie Mellon University. His plays have been produced and developed in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington, DC, and Kansas City. He is proudest of his productions of K COMMA JOSEPH (UP Theater), "Flood" (Samuel French Off Off-Broadway Short Play Festival), and "Steal This Play" (Gallery Players). His short film, "Not So Hilarious Anymore," screened at 10 festivals, including those in New York, San Francisco, and Liverpool. "Flood" was also published in the fall 2020 issue of the Southern Indiana Review. His short fiction can be found online at Arch Street Press, The Write Launch, and Light and Dark Magazine. He is originally from Joplin, Missouri, and currently lives with his wife and two sons in the Washington Heights neighborhood of Manhattan. 


Previews: BONES BRIGADE at CVRep

Bonale Fambrini - Shane

Bonale Zohn Fambrini was raised in Milburn, NJ. At the age of 11, he began voice and acting lessons, which led to an appearance in the revival production of South Pacific at the Paper Mill Playhouse in Millburn. He was cast in NYC for the title role in Oliver!, followed by Hazel the Musical, directed by Lucie Arnaz. He can be seen as Black Sky in the Netflix series Daredevil, HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver – “Singapore Gambling and Washington Statehood”. He also appeared in the CBS TV series Kevin Can Wait with Kevin James and Leah Remini. Fambrini has also performed in The King and I at Lincoln Center and in the Christmas Spectacular starring The Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall. Most recently, Fambrini sang the national anthem for the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. He is active with Broadway Serves and Broadwday Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. He is a proud member of SAG-AFTRA, AGVA, and AEA.

Previews: BONES BRIGADE at CVRep


Ethan David Zeph likens himself to Mike, who sings and dances the song “I Can Do That” in A Chorus Line. He was inspired by his sister’s dancing recital. He started with a dance class, then a dance competition, a voice lesion, and an acting class. He attended the Musical Theatre program at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, graduating in 2021. Now based in New York City, Ethan has been performing in regional theaters across the country.

Previews: BONES BRIGADE at CVRep

Alex Michell - Lee

Alex Michell is an actor and musician from Silver Spring, MD. He is making his California theatre debut in Summer Session With The Bones Brigade. His role as Lee combines Alex’ two passions: acting and skateboarding. He was recently seen at the Ashland New Play Festival, the American Playwrights Conference (Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center). Other credits include Choir Boy at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Nell Gwynn at the Folger Theatre, and season two of The Gilded Age on HBO. IG: _alexmichell_

Previews: BONES BRIGADE at CVRep


Chicago-born Akiyo Komatsu is making his Coachella Valley Repertory debut. He is a graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. He is the lead in the film Before Anyone Else, which premiered at this year’s Chicago International Film Festival. He is Liam, a recurring in the fourth season of Powerbook II: GHOST and appears in the fourth season of Mr. Robot.  On stage, Akiyo has portrayed Sakamoto in Flying Tigers (Off-Broadway), Truman Capote in Brando/Capote (Off-Off-Broadway), and Sir Toby in Thirteenth Night. Akiyo recently made his directorial film debut with ONDEH, which premiered at the Angelika Theater in New York City.

Previews: BONES BRIGADE at CVRep


Keeley Karsten stars as Natalie Fabelman in Steven Spielberg’s The Fabelmans, cowritten by Tony Kushner. Other film credits include the recently completed Indie Feature, Adult Best Friends (Before The Door Pictures); Entanglement; and On Being Twelve. Her television credits include Amazon’s Hunters and a starring role in Evil Lives Here. She last performed on the stage in CVRep’s 2022 production of Fun Home as Small Alison. @keeleykarsten

Previews: BONES BRIGADE at CVRep


Madeleine D. Hall is thrilled to make her West Coast theatrical debut with Coachella Valley Repertory and Adam Karsten. Her passion for acting, singing, and dancing began in childhood. She appeared in the 2022 film, Bones and All, Max original series Generation, and as a voice actress taking on the beloved WilyKit in Cartoon Network's Thundercats.

COACHELLA VALLEY REPERTORY is a non-profit, professional regional theater. It is the only theater in California’s Coachella Valley that has Small Professional Theatre (SPT) status with Actor's Equity.

CVRep produces professional theater and educational programs that present thought provoking theatre of substance. It also offers professional level theatre training for young people and adults in its Conservatory, Writing Competition, and other meaningful, socially, and culturally relevant children's outreach programs. As a member of the Coachella Valley community, CVRep is committed to enriching the quality of life for all residents and to providing memorable experiences for the Valley’s many visitors.



Dates & Times: Wed & Sat - Dec. 6, 9, 13, 16 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.; Thurs & Fri – Dec. 7, 8, 14, 15 at 7 p.m.; Sun – Dec. 10 & 17 at 2 p.m.

Tickets:            $50 - $88

To purchase:     Online at the link below.