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Isaac Gomez

Isaac Gomez is an award-winning Chicago-based playwright originally from El Paso, Texas/Ciudad Juárez, Mexico. His play La Ruta received its world premiere at Steppenwolf Theater Company this Winter. His one-woman show the way she spoke will be receiving its Off-Broadway premiere at the Minetta Lane Theatre (produced by Audible) in Summer 2019. He is currently under commission from South Coast Repertory, Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Steep Theatre, and StepUp Chicago Playwrights. His plays have been supported by Steppenwolf Theater Company, Primary Stages, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Goodman Theatre, Victory Gardens Theater, Northlight Theatre, Albany Park Theater Project, WaterTower Theater, Haven Theater, Teatro Vista, Greenhouse Theater Center, Jackalope Theater Company, Pivot Arts, Definition Theater Company, Broken Nose Theater, Stage Left, The VORTEX, and Something Marvelous. He is the recipient of the 2018 Dramatists Guild Lanford Wilson Award, the 2017 Jeffry Melnick New Playwright Award at Primary Stages, an inaugural 3Arts “Make A Wave” grantee, Co-Creative Director at the Alliance of Latinx Theatre, a Resident Playwright at Chicago Dramatists, an Artistic Associate with Victory Gardens Theater, Ensemble Member with Teatro Vista, Artistic Associate with Pivot Arts, an advisory committee member of the Latinx Theatre Commons (LTC) and a core producer with the Jubilee. He is a Professional Lecturer at The Theatre School at DePaul University, and is represented by The Gersh Agency and Circle of Confusion.


Stephen Cefalu, Jr.* (Eric) is thrilled to be making his City Theatre debut. Regional: World Premiere of Mary Page Marlowe (Steppenwolf Theatre Company), Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (Redtwist Theatre, Jeff nomination Best Supporting Actor), End Days (Windycity Playhouse), A Man’s World, In A Word, Damsels, Brotherhood (Williamstown Theatre Festival).
TV/FIlm: Shameless, Law and Order: SVU, Evil, This Afternoon. Training: Yale School of Drama.

EDGAR MIGUEL SANCHEZ*  He recently played Romeo in Romeo and Juliet at Chicago Shakespeare Theater. Other Chicago credits include; Macbeth, Short Shakespeare! Twelfth Night, Chicago Shakespeare in the Parks production of Romeo and Juliet and Short Shakeapeare! Romeo and Juliet all at Chicago Shakespeare Theater, In The Next Room or the vibrator play (TimeLine Theatre Company); Hobo King (Congo Square Theatre Company); Dutchman/TRANSit (American Blues Theater); Sweat, stop. reset. (Goodman Theatre); Water by the Spoonful, Native Son (Court Theatre); The Wheel (Steppenwolf Theatre Company). REGIONAL: Fences (Arizona Theatre Company, Indiana Repertory Theatre, Milwaukee Repertory Theater); Water by the Spoonful (TheatreSquared); title role in Hamlet (GableStage); Twelfth Night, Richard III, Troilus and Cressida, The Admirable Crichton (American Players Theatre); A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Othello, and The Comedy of Errors (Oregon Shakespeare Festival). FILM: Blueprint. TELEVISION: Sense8, Chicago P.D. EDUCATION: BFA in Acting, minor in Sociology, DePaul University.

Lisa Velten Smith* is thrilled to be back at City Theatre where she was last seen as Laura in We Are Among Us.  Other notable Pittsburgh theater credits include A Doll’s House Part II, Equus, Disgraced (Pittsburgh Public Theater), Nomad Motel, Hand To God, Oblivion (City Theatre).  Broadway:  After Miss Julie (Roundabout Theatre).  Off B’way: Spirit Control (Manhattan Theatre Club), Antony and Cleopatra, All’s Well That Ends Well (Theatre for a New Audience).  Other select credits include:  Hand To God (TheaterWorks Hartford), Greedy(Clubbed Thumb), Silent Heroes (Roundtable Ensemble), FUBAR, LoveSick(Project Y Theatre), Rabbit Hole(Premiere Stages), Paris Commune(La Jolla Playhouse), Bash(About Face Theatre), Absolution(Steppenwolf Garage).  T.V/Film: “Gone”, “White Collar”, “Law and Order”, “Law and OrderCriminal Intent” (recurring), “Early Edition”, Feast of the Seven Fishes, Proxy, In Our Nature,100 Towels, What Are You Having?,  among others.   BFA: The Theatre School at DePaul University, MFA: University of California, San Diego.  Lisa is an artistic associate of Project Y Theatre in New York City, a Designated Linklater Voice Instructor, and teaches at CMU School of Drama.  This past January, Lisa was honored with the 2019 Pittsburgh Performer of the Year. 

Sam Turich* is an actor, director and filmmaker, and designs immersive experiences. His acting credits include work off-Broadway at the New York International Fringe Festival, Urban Stages, @HERE, Ensemble Studio Theater and UCB Theater. Here in Pittsburgh: City Theatre, Public, Quantum, Bricolage, and Playhouse. Film and television include Castle Rock, The Great One, Law & Order,  Supah Ninjas, Fathers & Daughters and the upcoming Unsinkable. Directing includes, stage: Yinzer Scrooged, Inside Passage and Fat Beckett, film and TV: Progression, Mombies and Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. 

Creator/Director on immersive projects. With Bricolage Production Company: STRATA, OjO, The Ascendants and DODO at the Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History. He designed and produced the immersivesStudio A: Immersive Engagement in 2018 and Daylighting the Stream on Governors Island in New York Harbor in 2019, and is currently consulting at Entertainment Technology Center at CMU.  He is Head of Education at Bricolage. 

Drew Leigh Williams* is thrilled to return to City Theatre after being seen as Marie Antoinette in The Revolutionists. She will celebrate her 3 year anniversary as a Pittsburgh resident this fall. Local credits include Not Medea with off the WALL, Fun Home and A New Brain (Front Porch Theatricals), and The Double-Threat Trio world premiere, XanaduPump Boys and Dinettes and A Musical Christmas Carol (Pittsburgh CLO). Drew Leigh is a proud member of Actor’s Equity and received her MFA in Acting from the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University.  Thank you to Isaac, Marc, and Team.  

*Members of Actors’ Equity Association


The audio play of PERKUP PERKUP is no longer available. Please see the additional resources below to see how you can help continue this important work in Pittsburgh.

PERKUP Additional Resource



By Isaac Gomez
Directed by Marc Masterson

Welcome to the best coffee shop in Elkhorn, Wisconsin, where the biggest challenge is pushing the cold brew – until someone new arrives…Isaac Gomez delivers a pulsating and searing new play about an America divided and on the brink.

PerkUp PerKup contains mature language and content that some may find unsettling. The show is recommended for ages 16 and up.




ALEXIS CARRIE (Costume Design)

JORGE ARROYO (Lighting Design)


TAYLOR MESZAROS* (Stage Manager)

BRAD PETERSON (Audio Play Sound Design)

CLARE DROBOT (Dramaturg)


*Member of Actors’ Equity Association


For this production:
Randy Kovitz – Fight Director
Sheila McKenna – Dialect Coach
Claire Landuyt – Assistant Stage Manager
Amelia Benson – Costume Shop Assistant
Bob Follette – Production Volunteer
Betty Cruz – EDI Advocate
Bridget Mullins – EDI Advocate

Special thanks
We B’ Props
Bonnie Mohr


This recording is meant for private viewing only and may not be used for any other purpose.  Under no circumstances may this recording be shared or duplicated. This recording has been made available in partnership with the employees represented by Actors’ Equity Association, Stage Directors & Choreographers Society, and United Scenic Artists, Local USA 829, IATSE