Meet the Cast and Director of PRELUDE TO A KISS

Meet the Cast and Director of PRELUDE TO A KISS

Allison Page (Rita) is excited to be back at Custom Made for the first time since Book of Liz in 2011. Allison is an actor/comedian/writer/proud native of the tundra of northern Minnesota. She is a member of San Francisco sketch comedy phenomenon Killing My Lobster and has performed with SF Sketchfest, The SF Improv Festival, Boxcar Theatre, SF Theater Pub, The SF Olympians Festival, SF Fringe Festival, SF Comedy College, The Paul Bunyan Playhouse and others. Her performances include BEEEEEAAR (The Bear), The Seven Year Itch (The Girl), Romeo and Juliet (Juliet), A Gap in Generations (Arlecchino), Barefoot in the Park (Corie), and a nearly three and a half year stint in Tony ‘n Tina’s Wedding playing almost everyone. She has appeared numerous times with her sketch comedy duo Wegent & Page, her improv team Clean Sanchez and appeared as herself in the web series Everybody’s a Comedian. allison2
Charles Lewis III (Tom/Minister/Jamaican Waiter) is an actor, writer, and director in the San Francisco Bay Area theatre scene. He has previously written for San Francisco TheaterPub, Wily West Productions, and the San Francisco Olympians Festival. A prolific presence in front of the curtain, the companies for which he’s acted include such renowned local names as ACT, PianoFight, Impact, Cutting Ball, New Conservatory Theatre Centre, Playwrights Centre of San Francisco, Wily West, Atmos Theatre, No Nude Men, TheaterPub, and Custom Made (of which he is a member). He has made nearly as many appearances on film and television. He can also be found on-line, condensing his nonsensical thoughts on Twitter @SimonPatt. His more long-winded ramblings can be found on his blog, charles2
Dave Sikula (Dr. Boyle) Previous roles: Max Tarasov (Superior Donuts) Edna Turnblad (Hairspray), Lawrence Jameson (Dirty Rotten Scoundrels) “Ronald Reagan” (The Wedding Singer), the title roles in Uncle Vanya and Bullshot Crummond; Boris Trigorin (The Sea Gull), Hildy Johnson (The Front Page), The Devil (Don Juan in Hell), J. Carlyle Benson (Boy Meets Girl), John (Oleanna),  Mike Connor (The Philadelphia Story),Victor Prynne (Private Lives),  Charles J. Guiteau (Assassins), Moonface Martin (Anything Goes), Artie Shaughnessey (The House of Blue Leaves), Franklin D. Roosevelt (Annie), Pompey (Measure for Measure ), Oronte (The Misanthrope), Moon (The Real Inspector Hound), Avram (Fiddler on the Roof). This performance is dedicated to Bill Meade. Love to Pidge dave2
Elena Ruggiero (Aunt Dorothy/Leah) is so grateful to be making her debut performance with Custom Made! Previous credits include: A Chorus Line (Sheila), Chicago (Kitty/Ensemble), Grease (Rizzo), Sweet Charity (Niki), Passion Play (Mary 2), Ghosts (Regina) and California Suite (Millie). She has performed at the Jean Shelton Actor’s Lab and won Best Actress in the SF Fringe Festival a few years back. In addition to performing, Elena has also taught dance and acting at elementary and high schools throughout the Bay Area and is currently on staff with Linda Bulgo’s Musical Productions, a children’s musical theatre company based in San Francisco. She also loves baking cupcakes with her sister! Elena would like to thank her family & friends (who she rarely gets to see) for their endless support. There’s no way I could do it without you elena2
Jan Carty Marsh (Mrs. Boyle) has a B.A. in theatre, has served internships with The San Francisco Mime Troupe and Shakespeare Santa Cruz, and is a SAG/AFTRA member and Equity Membership Candidate.  Although primarily an actor, she has helped get new works produced or read as an Associate Producer at Bindlestiff Studios and a Producing Director for the Playwrights’ Center of San Francisco.  She was most recently seen in Theater Pub’s, TAMING OF THE SHREW and The Exit’s “Behind the Curtain” readings, and is now loving Marion’s family—she’s not teasing you jan2
Nick Trengove (Peter) has appeared in various plays throughout the SF Bay Area and is just tickled to be working with the Custom Made Theater Company again. His recent credits include Slugs and Kicks with Theatre Rhino and The Strindberg Chamber Plays with Cutting Ball Theatre. He would like to give special thanks to his family and friends for all the love and support, and to nearly everything that happened in the 90s — without these things, he would not be the man he is today.

Richard Wenzel (Old Man) is a Bay Area native and a company member of Custom Made.  He was most recently seen here as “Love” in Spalding Gray’s Stories Left to Tell, and Satan in The Last Days of Judas Iscariot.  He feels especially lucky to be a part of this production as this has always been one of his favorite scripts and he is very happy to be doing it with such a lovely and talented group of people.  He has also worked with No Nude Men, Wily West, NCTC, Center Rep, Willows, 42nd St. Moon and Cutting Ball.  He can be seen onscreen as an FBI Agent in the indie film Strange Culture and heard singing as the Baker Bear in Gage Taylor’s children’s DVD, Bears at Work.  He has trained in voice with Daniel Levenstein and acting with Katherine Keats of Mark Monroe Studios in Los Angeles.

Will Leschber (Taylor) recently moved to the bay area and is happy to be making his Custom Made Theatre debut. Including the summer sojourn he spent in San Francisco circa 2010, his recent forays onto the stage include: The Atmos Theatre production of Twelfth Night, The SF Fringe Festival one act Weird Romance, and Theatre Pub’s rockin’ concert-style rendition of RENT. Additionally, he is overjoyed to have had the opportunity to direct a production of The Hobbit for Young Performers Theatre. He would like to thank his wonderful Ashley for the constant laughter and support, Stuart for the abundance of positivity he open the door to, and his parents for everything else


Stuart Bousel (Director) has previously directed M. Butterfly and The Merchant of Venice at Custom Made, and will be returning to direct The Crucible next year. A staple of the Bay Area theater scene for over ten years, his directing credits include A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Twelfth Night and The Frogs for Theater in The Woods, and Measure For Measure and Taming of The Shrew for the San Francisco Theater Pub, of which he is also a Founding Artistic Director. He is a writer whose work has appeared three times in the Bay One Acts Festival (Housebroken, Speak Roughly, Brainkill), been produced by Wily West Productions (Juno en Victoria, A Late Lunch) and No Nude Men Productions (Speak To Me, Troijka, Edenites), who will be producing his play Age of Beauty at the Exit Theater in August. He is also the founder and Executive Director of the San Francisco Olympians Festival and has published one novel, Dry Country. Find out more about his work at


First Reviews for PRELUDE TO A KISS – raves all around!

First Reviews for PRELUDE TO A KISS – raves all around!

We got our first reviews in for Prelude to a Kiss – and they both highlight how beautiful and touching this production is.

First out of the gate was TheatreStorm’s Charles Kruger, who wrote:
“Allison Page as Rita and Richard Wenzel as the Old Man are entirely up to the task, delivering sterling performances good enough to send chills of wonder up our spines. They are supported by a skilled company throughout, with Nick Trengove exceptionally charming as Peter, the confused young husband who must provide the emotional backbone of the play.

Director Stuart Bousel applies his usual deft touch to the dialogue and the movement, keeping the stage picture interesting at all times and plumbing the language for layers of meaning. A wonderful set by Andrew Cummings features a constantly moving cyclorama projection of clouds (created by Maxx Kurzunski), evoking an eerie feeling of otherworldliness and the quick passage of time.” Read the entire review at

Next, Talkin’ Broadway’s Richard Connema chimed in, calling the production “inventive” and says that “Richard Wenzel (Old Man) … is a marvelously unsentimental actor whose economy of means works well for him in this production. His calm delivery of a long monologue describing in gray detail the wearying trek from cradle to grave leaves the audience a heart-rendering serenity.”
Read the whole review at


The “little man” is clapping for WHY TORTURE IS WRONG…!

The “little man” is clapping for WHY TORTURE IS WRONG…!

Our first review is in, and its a big one.  The San Francisco Chronicle covered our opening night and we are thrilled to share this very positive review!

2.0Robert Hurwitt, the dean of SF critics, writes, “The comedy and theatrical invention in “Why Torture Is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them” are as zany and pointed as you’d expect from Christopher Durang… much of the comedy is as immediate as today’s debates about gun control, pre-emptive drone strikes and (courtesy of “Zero Dark Thirty”) “enhanced” interrogation techniques…. Durang’s provocative comedy offers considerable rewards.”
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More raves for “The Play About the Baby!”

More raves for “The Play About the Baby!”

Catching up a bit on reviews, but they have all been fantastic!

“This production evokes new appreciation of the clicking mind behind one of America’s theatrical treasures.” – Stacy Trevenon, Stage and Cinema

“…a polished gem of black comedy.” – Charles Kruger ,

Director Brian Katz’s production is surreal, riotous, troubling, intimate and heartbreaking….This is a must for Albee fans and a pleasing outing for anyone who enjoys thinking person’s drama.” – Richard Connema, Forallevents.

Woot!  Come check out what all the raving is about – only eight shows left!



More raves for “The Play About the Baby!”

First two reviews for THE PLAY ABOUT THE BABY are in!

We got our first two reviews today, and they are both very positive.

First from Lee Hartgrave, writing for

“The Actors are “Awesome!”… They deserve a couple of Oscars… What a show! – “Wonderful and imaginative!”  4/4 Glasses of Champaign.  (ed-Yum!)

And next from Kedar Adour, our Theatre MD (never a bad idea to have around!)

“a great cast… devious and inventive… this reviewer highly recommends seeing another side of Albee….you should not miss this production!”