Featured Authors & Actors 10/13/18


Valeri FioravantiValerie Fioravanti is the author of the linked collection of Brooklyn stories Garbage Night at the Opera from BkMk Press, winner of the Chandra Prize for Short FictionShe is the founder of Stories on Stage Sacramento and a private writing coach. “Loud Love,” which won the Tillie Olsen Short Story Award, appears in her second (unpublished) collection Bridge & Tunnel. Fioravanti is currently hard at work on one of three in-progress novels (hangs head in shame).

 

Michael David LukasMichael David Lukas has been a Fulbright Scholar in Turkey, a night-shift proofreader in Tel Aviv, and a waiter at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference in Vermont. Translated into more than a dozen languages, his first novel, The Oracle of Stamboul, was a finalist for the California Book Award, the NCIBA Book of the Year Award, and the Harold U. Ribalow Prize. His second novel,The Last Watchman of Old Cairo, was published recently by Spiegel & Grau. A graduate of Brown University and the University of Maryland, he is a recipient of scholarships from the National Endowment for the Arts, Montalvo Arts Center, New York State Summer Writers’ Institute, Squaw Valley Community of Writers, and the Elizabeth George Foundation. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, SlateNational Geographic Traveler, and Georgia Review. He lives in Oakland and teaches at San Francisco State University.

About the Actors

Leah DohertyLeah Daugherty will read  “Loud Love” by Valerie Fioravanti. Daugherty is pleased to be making her debut at Stories on Stage. She was last seen onstage playing #8 in The Wolvesat Capital Stage. Daugherty is a proud alumna of both UC Davis, where she studied English and theatre, and the Capital Stage Apprenticeship Program. Since then she’s been a regular at the Davis Shakespeare Festival and Big Idea Theatre. She is very grateful for this opportunity and to her tribe for their support.

 

Matthew AbergelMatthew Abergel will read the excerpt from The Last Watchman of Old Cairo by Michael David Lukas. Abergel often performs at the Woodland Opera House Theatre, where he recently co-directed the world premiere of  Prime Time for the Holidays, written by his husband, Bob Cooner.  A former editor and community-college instructor, Abergel is the author of two books published by Simon & Schuster, and a play,  Second-Best Bed, produced by Woodland Opera House in 2014. Currently he’s putting the finishing touches on a historical novel about King James. Long ago, he studied dramatic literature and directing as a grad student at the University of Chicago and Stanford. He’s tickled as pink as a marshmallow Peep to read for Stories on Stage.

 

Featured Authors & Actors 9/8/18

Join us for our third annual Opening Night Gala, featuring Vanessa Hua and Paula Saunders. Limited tickets available at Eventbrite.

To kick off our sixth season, we’re welcoming two Northern California writers with novels hot off the presses, Vanessa Hua (A River of Stars) and Paula Saunders (The Distance Home). Both novels are moving and memorable explorations of family in all its complicated glory. Authors will be on hand to sign books, and the evening will also include a silent art auction, savory and sweet bites, and a refreshing Pimm’s Cup cocktail.

About the Authors

Vanessa HuaVanessa Hua is a columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle and the author of a short story collection, Deceit and Other Possibilities, and a debut novel,  A River of Stars. For two decades, she has been writing, in journalism and fiction, about Asia and the Asian diaspora. She has received a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award, the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, the San Francisco Foundation’s James D. Phelan Award, and a Steinbeck Fellowship in Creative Writing, as well as honors from the Society of Professional Journalists and the Asian American Journalists Association. Her work has appeared in publications including The New York Times, The Atlantic, and The Washington Post. She lives in the Bay Area with her family.

Paula Saunders

photo: Alena Saunders

Paula Saunders grew up in Rapid City, South Dakota. She is a graduate of the Syracuse University creative writing program, and was awarded a postgraduate Albert Schweitzer Fellowship at the State University of New York at Albany, under then-Schweitzer chair Toni Morrison. She lives in California with her husband. They have two grown daughters.

 

About the Actors

Ashley LucasAshley Lucas will read an excerpt from A River of Stars by Vanessa Hua. Lucas has appeared on stage in several Sacramento Community Theatre productions, from children’s theatre and comedies to drama. She has also read fiction for Stories on Stage Sacramento and many plays for the Playwright’s Collaborative. Recently, Lucas has narrated Waiting for a Comet by Richard Prosch on Audible Books. In the evenings you can find her walking her dog, Cabo, and, on rare occasions, her husband, Wade.

Gail DartezGail Dartez will read an excerpt from The Distance Home by Paula Saunders. Dartez is a professional actor, director, and teaching artist. She is elated to have this opportunity to share “Stories on Stage.” Her directing credits include The Arsonists (Capital Stage); AntigoneThe Rover, Two Gentleman Of Verona, and The Exit Interview (Big Idea Theatre); Orlando and The Turn Of The Screw (Sacimpulse); and various productions at Cosumnes River College. Dartez has also directed Precious Stones (Chicago), The Three Musketeers, and Romeo And Juliet, and served as co-director for Wait Until Dark, The Baby Dance, and The Gifts Of The Magi (New American Theater, IL).

Her acting credits include Romeo And Juliet (Davis Shakespeare Festival); Love and Information, The Typographer’s Dream, Les Liaisons Dangereuses, and Relatively Speaking (Capital Stage). In the Bay Area and beyond, she has performed in venues such as The Magic Theatre, Bay Area Playwright’s Festival, Berkeley Shakespeare Festival, Long Wharf Theatre, Yale Repertory Theater, and the New York Stage and Film Company. Dartez holds an MFA in Acting from the Yale School of Drama.

Featured Authors & Actors 6/9/18

Join us on the Pence Gallery patio for our last event of the season.

Lynn FreedLynn Freed’s books include seven novels, a collection of stories and two collections of essays. Her short fiction and essays have appeared in Harper’s,The New Yorker, and The Atlantic Monthly, among numerous others. She is the recipient of the inaugural Katherine Anne Porter Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, two O. Henry Awards, and has received fellowships and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and The Guggenheim Foundation, among others. Having grown up in South Africa, she came to the U.S. as a graduate student at Columbia University, where she received an M.A. and Ph.D. in English Literature. She is Professor Emerita of English at the University of California, Davis, and lives in Northern California.

 

Molly Giles

Molly Giles has published one novel, Iron Shoes, and four collections of short stories which have, respectively, won The Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction (Rough Translations), the California Commonwealth Silver Medal for Fiction (Creek Walk), the Split Oak Prize (Bothered) and The Spokane Prize for Short Fiction (All the Wrong Places). She has new and forthcoming work in Bellevue Literary JournalFoglifterJukedWest Marin ReviewWillow Springs, and Zyzzyva. She taught creative writing for many years at San Francisco State University and recently retired from teaching at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. She lives in West Marin.

 

Martha Omiyo KightMartha Omiyo Kight will read “Sunshine” by Lynn Freed. Kight has been very active in the Sacramento area theater community for four decades as an actor, singer, director, props mistress, and costumer. Most recently, she appeared in Sacramento Theater Company’s world premiere of the musical drama The Donner Party and the encore of The Musical of Musicals (The Musical!). Her credits in area theaters include Violet Weston in August: Osage County, Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd, Sister Aloysius in Doubt, and Ruth in Pirates of Penzance, as well as leading roles in A New BrainNoises OffAngels in America, and The Importance of Being Earnest. Kight has been writing poetry and reading her own and others’ work since 2009. Her poetry has been published in three Sacramento Voices anthologies and featured at Poetry Live Sunday in Placerville. She was also featured reader for Evan Myquest’s “Death Valley Days” and Gene Avery’s “Death by Deer Rifle.” She read Lori Ostlund’s “Talking Fowl with My Father” for Stories on Stage Sacramento in 2010 and Peg Alford Pursell’s work for Stories on Stage Davis. She is glad to return to present this incredible piece by Lynn Freed.

 

Victoria GoldblattVictoria Goldblatt will read “Next Time” by Molly Giles. Goldblatt has been performing for over twenty years. She has done a variety of work, including films, commercials, community theater, storytelling, and voice-overs for TV and radio, along with her show, Cabernet Night with Victoria and Friends. She was the former Casting Director for Stories on Stage Sacramento and was a member of the Steering Committee for the Playwrights Collaborative in Sacramento for over seven years. She is happy to be back performing at Stories on Stage Davis once again!