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Meet FIRST HAND WOMAN’S amazing NYC-bound team!!

Sarah Michelle Brown 2- photo Aidan DevineSARAH MICHELLE BROWN

Playwright, Producer

Actor – “Depression”

Sarah Michelle Brown’s passion is for telling stories that reach out and give audiences a powerful experience. She is a multi-passionate artist who writes and directs for film, music videos, documentaries and for the stage. Since studying at the Neighborhood Playhouse School of Theater in New York City, Sarah has been writing, directing and producing primarily her own film and theatre projects. She shadowed Oscar winner Paul Haggis in New York City and Los Angeles, and writer/director Bobby Moresco in Chicago. That same year, Sarah was one of eight women selected to participate in the Women in the Director’s Chair program in Banff. Most recently Sarah created the concept for, and directed music videos for acclaimed Canadian artists Shad and Saidah Baba Talibah, and has several more in the works. Sarah was the winner of a coveted spot at the 2009 Next Stage Theatre festival as well as the Chapters Best Text award for writing at the St. Ambroise Montreal Fringe festival, both for her uplifting stage play, FIRST HAND WOMAN. This play’s upcoming run at the NYC International Fringe Festival marks Sarah’s New York City debut.  |  Tweet Sarah:  @FirstHandWoman




Nicole Stamp is an actor, director, writer, and television host who plays competitive dodgeball and is doing her best to read the whole entire Internet.  Nicole hosted and directed 10 seasons of The SPACE, a live-to-air improvised TV show that earned 2 Gemini Awards among 6 nominations.  She has written and directed Ten Things, a play which The National Post called “not to be missed- funny and sad and sweet”, and her one-woman show, Better Parts, was deemed “intoxicatingly written and joyously performed” by the Globe and Mail, and has toured to critical acclaim in Toronto, Montreal, Pittsburgh, and England.  Nicole’s acting credits include  Degrassi, Covert AffairsDan For MayorA Midsummer Night’s Dreamfor colored girls who have considered suicide, and the first Canadian production of Avenue Q.  She followed in the footsteps of Jeopardy’s Alex Trebek to host the classic Canadian game show Reach For The Top for 6 seasons, and she recently hosted and produced a series of cheeky and entertaining interviews covering the Toronto International Film Festival for Alliance FIlms.  The very first reading of First Hand Woman happened in Nicole’s living room in 2004, and she is thrilled to collaborate with this talented team.  |  @NicoleStamp



Original Production Director

Esther originally trained as an actor in NYC and completed her directing degree at Drama Centre London in 2006. She is a member of the Lincoln Center Directors Lab 2010, and is a founding member of Directors Lab North based in Toronto. She was nominated for 2012 Pauline McGibbon Award & 2011 John Hirsch Directing Award.  Selected Credits: Director: Bremen Rock City (Song Trolley); Cowboy Mouth (Heart In Hand); Yellow Face (Hart House), Trout Stanley (Heart in Hand) Fear & Misery of the Third Reich (DeusXM), First Hand Woman (Fire Up Productions); workshops of Abigail’s Mirror (World Wide Lab/ Irondale Brooklyn), Intent City (Eventual Ashes), La Commune (Heart in Hand) & Sex Tape Project (Fu-Gen). Co-director: Hiding Words (for you) (Eventual Ashes), Strange Mary Strange (Theatre on the Verge); She also continues to act in film, TV & theatre. She was last seen as Janet in Soulpepper’s 2012 smash hit, Kim’s Convenience.



Actor – “Anger”

Patrice Goodman is a professional actor, director, choreographer and teacher. She recently appeared in the miniseries Bloodletting. Patrice voiced a character alongside Gordon Pinsent and Alberta Watson in the short film The Spine which was directed by Oscar winner Chris Landrith. It was an official selection at the 2009 Toronto International Film Festival. Patrice has been a series lead and series regular in several TV shows including Maximum Dimensions and Platinum. She has also appeared in Being Erica, Odyssey 5, DOC, and Wildcard. Patrice has performed in children’s theatre for the last 13 years, her favourites include Anansi the Spider and The Ugly Duckling with Little Red Theatre Company and more recently Touch the Sky at LKTYP. Patrice has been teaching drama and dance to youth and young adults for the last eight years. She has also taught in post secondary programs at the Munich Film Academy in Germany and was a TA to esteemed Meisner coach Jacqueline McClintock at the Mallorca Film Academy in Spain.


allana harkinALLANA HARKIN

Actor – “Acceptance”

Allana Harkin is a Toronto-based actor and writer. She performed the role of Acceptance in Sarah Michelle Brown’s First Hand Woman at the 2009 Next Stage Festival. Select theatre credits include work with Centaur Theatre, Theatre Aquarius, Factory theatre, Youtheatre, Necessary Angel, Summerworks, Canadian Stage Company and The Next Stage Theatre Festival. As a Playwright, Allana’s work in theatre has been produced at Summerworks, Theatre Aquarius, Magnus Theatre, Theatre Collingwood, Centaur Theatre, Thousand Islands Playhouse, The Grand Theatre, Howick Theatre New Zealand and The Flatrock Playhouse in North Carolina. Select TV credits include series-regular and guest-starring roles on Lost Girl (Showcase, Syfy), Degrassi: TNG (Teen Nick/Much Music), Dino Dan (Nick Jr/TVO), The Ron James Show (CBC), Living In Your Car (TMN/TVO), Life With Boys (Disney) and most recently in the upcoming feature films Patch Town and The Birder. Currently she’s developing a show for CTV/eOne and writes the popular comedic parenting blog Eating Over The Sink on with Samantha Bee. She has been nominated for a Canadian Comedy Award for her work with the sketch troupe The Atomic Fireballs.
Tweet Allana: @allanaharkin



Stage and Production Manager

Gillian is a freelance Production Manager and Stage Manager based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. She works primarily in theatre and dance. Gillian has had the pleasure of managing for many Toronto-based companies including: Cart/Horse Theatre, Can Asian Dance Festival, Coleman Lemieux and Compagnie, Dancemakers, Eldritch Theatre, Fallen Rock Productions, Forcier Stage Works, Gailey Road Productions, inDANCE, Julia Sasso Dances, The National Ballet of Canada, Theatre Passe Muraille, Toronto Dance Theatre and ProArteDanza. The last time she worked in New York City was at the James Joyce Theatre with Toronto Dance Theatre’s production of Timecode Break. Gillian was the stage manager of First Hand Woman in the Toronto Next Stage Fringe Festival in 2009. She is delighted to be involved in the New York City premiere!




Actor – “Bargaining”

Nicole Maroon was raised in small town Ontario, Canada and was the first in her family to earn a University degree. After which, Nicole went to the University of Southern California on full scholarship to pursue her Masters in Fine Arts. After four transformative years in LA, Nicole moved back to Toronto, Canada where she is now living and working as an actor.  Recently, she has been seen on Cosmo TV’s The Love Trap, and the independent short Look Up. Nicole is excited for her New York stage debut in First Hand Woman.

Tweet Nicole:  @NicoleMaroon



Actor – “Denial”

Actress, Hostess, Blogger, Gluten-Free Cook Extraordinaire and Creator/Star of critically-acclaimed one-woman dramedy Dairy-Free Love, Victoria is more than thrilled to be a part of the NYC premiere of First Hand Woman! Toronto-based, but ‘will-travel,’ Victoria work-shopped her Dairy-Free Love character “Dawn” – hostess of Internet cooking show Dawn’s Delights – in West Hollywood, before returning to Canada and touring for the past year to various cities and theatre festivals. While touring, Victoria was thrilled to be awarded “Fave Actress” (The Beat), “Best of 2012 – Theatre” (View Magazine) as well as second runner-up in the Hamilton Fringe Theatre Festival Playwriting Contest (2012). When she’s not acting, Victoria loves to cook gluten and dairy-free food for her friends and family and regularly posts recipes and tips on living Gluten-Free on her blog Gluten/Dairy Freedom! Victoria is taking a break from her regular gig as hostess and Emcee of the Food Network Celebrity Stage at The Canadian National Exhibition to join the team of First Hand Woman in NYC, and is excited to be working with such great people in such a great city!  |  Tweet Victoria:  @VictoriaMurdoch


alejandra nunezALEJANDRA NUNEZ

Co-Composer, Percussion aka “The Heart”

Alejandra Nuñez is a vocalist, percussionist, composer and mother to Natalia and Mathew. Born in Santiago, Chile, Alejandra has lived and worked as a musician in Canada and the United States. She has performed in Europe as well as North and Central America. Her training on percussion has taken her to Brazil, Cuba, Puerto Rico, New York and Egypt. Alejandra is the band leader of Latin Jazz Band Projecto Urbano Self titled CD with Mano Music. She has performed with The Toronto Dance Theater and written scores for various plays, including Djanet Sears’ The Adventures of A black Girl in Search of God (Dora MD Nomination) MD, Trey Anthony’s Da Kink in My Hair, Score, Soundscape, MD Michael Miller’s The Power of Harriet T!
Visit Alejandra’s website.


Saidah baba talibahSAIDAH BABA TALIBAH

Co-Composer, Lead Singer aka “The Voice”

There’s Rock n’ Roll. And then there’s the Rock n’ Soul of buzzy Toronto-bred vocalist Saidah Baba Talibah, daughter of Tony and Grammy Award-nominated icon Salome Bey, “Canada’s First Lady of Blues”. Strong bloodlines notwithstanding, Saidah is living colour and living proof that Black Girls Rock – and funk out too!

Want proof? In 2011, riding the critical acclaim of her debut album (S)cream, a seamless blend of rock, blues and raunchy soul, Saidah won Toronto’s inaugural Soundclash Music Award. She’s supported Little Dragon, Bootsy Collins (Parliament-Funkadelic), and was handpicked as one of the “best new Canadian acts” at Music Matters, MIDEM, Trans Musicale, Reeperbahn, and the Afro Punk tour. It’s clear that while her early musical output is ahead of its time, she is looking to command respect today.

Forward thinking, but rooted in old school sensibilities gleaned from her Grammy Award-aligned lineage, Saidah produces hard rocking outsider music, with insider charm. And if there’s one thing you can say about Saidah – there’s no other musician that sounds, looks or feels like her.  |  Tweet Saidah:  @SBTfly


Adyana de la Torre - First Hand WomanADYANA DE LA TORRE

Authorized Company Representative

Adyana de la Torre recently played the female lead in Ticket 2 Eternity in FringeNYC 2012 and directed Falling Awake for the Midtown International Theatre Festival. She was named one of the People of the Year by for outstanding indie artists. She also played the lead role in Terry Schreiber’s production of The Last Days of Judas Iscariot by Stephen Adly Guirgis and in the bi-lingual play, Dia de los Muertos at Teatro Latea,   She is also a certified personal trainer, and fitness instructor and can be seen in such videos as Beachbody’s Brazil Butt Lift, Cardio Karate, Extreme Urban Rebounding, Blood Type Workout, 28 Day Total Body Transformations and more.  Adyana is also the artistic director/producer of Ticket 2 Eternity Productions.



Belly Dancing Consultant

Karusia Wroblewski is a lifelong dancer and yogini and has an honours dance degree from York University, where she focused on performance and anatomy. She currently teaches, performs and adores all forms of dance and expressive movement. She is especially interested in the interface of movement, healing and femininity. She lives and works in Toronto.


first hand woman Natasha Younge lowerNATASHA YOUNGE

Social Media Coordinator

Natasha Younge is an actress, comedienne and entrepreneur based in Los Angeles.  Classically-trained at the Drama Studio London, Natasha has appeared in original rock musicals, national commercials, and award-nominated independent films from San Francisco to Europe. A confessed “social media cyborg”, when she isn’t entertaining the world, Natasha is online sharing industry trends and championing new talent. Her daily online aggregate publication, The Younge Hollywood Blast has placed in the Top 10 in the Shorty Awards for the last two consecutive years.  In addition to creating digital headlines, Natasha loves consulting with – and assisting entertainment professionals on how to maximize their Twitter presence. Real world hobbies include: singing songs from the 1940’s, teaching herself jazz piano chords, and enjoying Earl Grey tea.  |  Tweet Natasha @natashayounge



I’d like to say a special THANK YOU to Brian Quirt for his stellar dramaturgical contribution to the script development process. He was not involved in prepping for the NYC debut, but he gave me some beautiful insights into this story.