On Stage

The Diary of Anne Frank

By Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett
Newly adapted by Wendy Kesselman
Directed by Leah S. Abrams *

Extended by popular demand until May 15th!

March 26 - May 1, 2010
Thurs - Sat 8pm; Sun 7pm

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"Wendy Kesselman's rewrite of Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett's 1955 Pulitzer prize-winning The Diary of Anne Frank should be seen by everyone, whether they saw the original or not, whether they're sixteen or seventy."
|- Curtain Up Reviews

"This new interpretation never relaxes its awareness of the hostile world beyond the attic that was the Franks' sanctuary and prison for two claustrophobic years, nor of the religious identity that made them a quarry... (this new adaptation contains) a gripping immediacy."
- The New York Times

Wendy Kesselman's dynamic new adaptation of The Diary of Anne Frank (original play by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett, based on the book "Anne Frank: Diary of a Young Girl") gives us an Anne who is overflowing with adolescent life.  Upon his death, Anne's father, Otto, released the previously unpublished portions of his daughter's diary.  Here, we are finally presented an Anne we can recognize as ourselves - defiant, passionate, curious, and determined.  The new adaptation fearlessly addresses the realities of the Holocaust and a life in hiding.

With:  Julia Belanoff, Monica Cappuccini, Stefin Collins *, Catz Forsman, Scarlett Hepworth, Andrew McBeth, Fred Pitts, Kelly Rinehart, Fuchsia Spring, and Richard Wenzel *

Stage Management:  Alan Kline *
Set Design:  Lewis Campbell *
Assistant Director:  Elizabeth Creely
Lighting Design:  Marci Ring *
Costume Design:  Bessie Delucchi
Sound Design:  Matt Payne
Props Master: Daniel Yelen
Graphic Design:  Wolfe Graphix
* indicates company member

Production Photos

Click on a thumbnail to see a full-sized, high resolution photo. Download photos by right-clicking and saving. All photos by Lauren Boone.

Julia Belanoff
Fred Pitts, Julia Belanoff

Andrew McBeth, Julia Belanoff

Fred Pitts

Monica Cappuccini, Richard Wenzel

Stefin Collins

Scarlett Hepworth, Catz Forsman, Monica Cappuccini, Fred Pitts, Richard Wenzel

Fred Pitts, Julia Belanoff, Fuchsia Spring, Scarlett Hepworth

Fuchsia Spring, Fred Pitts, Julia Belanoff, Scarlett Hepworth

Julia Belanoff, Kelly Rinehart


Cast and Crew

Julia Belanoff (Anne Frank), 14, is honored to make her debut performance with Custom Made Theatre Company, in the role of the inspirational Anne Frank. Some of her favorite previous roles include Mary Lennox in The Secret Garden (Coastal Repertory Theatre), Margie in Landscape of the Body (SF Playhouse), Judy in I'm Still Standing (ACT Young Conservatory) Emily in Our Town (Stagedoor Manor), and Belle in Beauty and the Beast (CSUS). Julia would like to thank and remember all the extraordinary people who made this show possible.

Monica Cappuccini (Auguste Van Daan) has appeared recently as Tess in “Bermuda Avenue Triangle’ at Hillbarn Theatre, Lady Bracknell in ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ at Broadway West, as B in  ‘Three Tall Women’ at the Pear Avenue Theatre, as Claire in ‘A Delicate Balance’ and Natasha in ‘Rough Crossing’ at Dragon Productions. She spent a very special year as an ensemble member of Golden Thread Production’s ‘Fairy Tale Players’. This is her debut at Custom Made Theatre.

Stefin Collins (Mr. Kralher) was seen last- Sept.– in Museum, (Box Car Theatre) as Mr. Hollingsford & Mr. Moe*. Other favorite roles include: Praxis Maidrid’s Bow, Otto The Food Chain, Erronius A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Stephen Drowning, & Beelzebub Goebbels! One Night Only! Live from Hell! He is fluent in ASL*, has 2 Bachelor Degrees, and is a member of TBA, CMTC & SFFCT. AJ, thanks for your love and support, you’re amazing-ILYE. Visit Stefin at: www.stefincollins.com

Catz Forsman (Mr. Dussel) is very pleased to be working and playing with Custom Made once again. He's performed in The Love Song of J.Robert Oppenheimer, was Fred Savage in Woody Allen's Riverside Drive and Baylenkov in Man in a Case of Custom Made's Chekov adaptations. He last played with the SF Playhouse as Turkle in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. Loves swimming in the Bay, playing mandolin, cat Dooley, wife Jeanie.

Scarlett Hepworth (Edith Frank) is delighted to be making her Custom Made debut. She most recently appeared in the critically acclaimed production of Doubt at New Conservatory, in the role of Sister Aloysius, following the hit musical Call Me Madam at 42nd Street Moon last fall. Since moving to the Bay Area from the Pacific Northwest in 2004, Scarlett has worked with Berkeley Rep, CalShakes, Crossroads, 42nd Street Moon, NCTC, Shotgun Players, Willows, Woman's Will, and Town Hall Theatre of Lafayette, for whom she was awarded a "best actress" Shellie Award in 2007 for her performance in Wit.  Scarlett holds a master's degree in music composition, and studied composition of opera with composer Carlisle Floyd.  She has a private vocal music studio at her home in Oakland (www.SingWithScarlett.com), where she lives with her partner of nearly 18 years, noted theater director Marilyn Langbehn.

Andrew McBeth (Peter Van Daan) is a freshman at Athenian High School and is very excited to be in his first performance with Custom Made Theatre.  He has previously performed in The Music Man with Pleasanton Playhouse, Seussical with CCCT, The Laramie Project at Athenian High School, and You Can’t Take it With You at Town Hall Theatre Teen Encore.  He is also actively involved with the Athenian Drama Advisory Board. Special thanks to Bharbra Foxcroft for supporting me in my theatrical endeavors.

Kelly Rinehart (Miep) is honored and humbled to be a part of sharing this story.  She was recently seen as Elise in The Miser with the Ross Valley Players, Susan in The Heidi Chronicles with Custom Made, and Nora in last season's Chains of Dew with the SF Free Civic Theatre.  In addition to other Bay Area appearances, she is particularly thankful to have done numerous original roles and improv work with the Creative Arts Department of Cornerstone Church in SF.  By day, Kelly works as a speech-language pathologist and AAC specialist.

Fred Pitts (Otto Frank) is happy to be performing with Custom Made again. Favorite roles include La Fleche in The Miser, Peter Patrone in The Heidi Chronicles, Styles/Bantu in Fugard's Sizwe Bansi is Dead, Felix in The Odd Couple. He has also performed with Ross Valley Players, Berkeley Rep, Aurora Theater, San Jose Stage Co.,and other Bay Area theaters.

Fuchsia Spring (Margot Frank) lives in San Francisco and is a junior in the International Bachelorette program at Berkeley High. When she isn’t buried in homework, she enjoys blowing bubbles, reading fashion blogs, and skeet shooting.  She has studied acting for the past four years at ACT, Berkeley Repetoir Theater, Berkeley High, and the San Francisco Waldorf School.  Fuchsia has previously appeared as Bilbo in The Hobbit, Lady Larkin in Once Upon a Mattress, and E.K. Hornbeck in Inherit the Wind at SF Waldorf, but Margot Frank is her first role outside of a classroom setting.  As usual, she sends hugs to her family, friends, and the cast. 

Richard Wenzel (Herrman Van Daan) last seen on the Custom Made Stage as Edward Teller in The Love Song of J. Robert Oppenheimer, is thrilled to be involved in this very challenging project that retells such an important story.  Trained in acting and singing with Mark Monroe Studios and Standard Productions, his other Custom Made projects include roles in Orchards, Slavs, Bobby Gould in Hell, and William Finn’s A New Brain (where he played Mr. Bungee the singing “frog boss from hell”).  He has also worked with NCTC, Center Rep, Second Wind Productions and 42nd St. Moon and can be seen on film as an FBI agent in the indie feature, Strange Culture

Leah S. Abrams (Director) is the co-founder and executive director of Custom Made.  For the company, she has directed multiple Beckett workshops, The Odd Couple, Dodo for President, and Two Rooms.  She co-directed Putting It Together and The Water Engine.  Acting credits include The Heidi Chronicles, A Delicate Balance, and A New Brain.  Leah would like to thank her family for never shying away from discussing the Holocaust, and for getting her through her first reading of “Night” at a much-too-young age.  Much gratitude and appreciation to the cast and crew for making this project everything she knew it could be.

Elizabeth Creely (Assistant Director) has acted as the stage manager and assistant director for Custom Made Theatre Company’s production of  A Delicate Balance, The Odd Couple and CM's  Fringe Fest entry Candide. She is very happy to be working with the cast and crew of The Diary of Anne Frank.

Bessie Delucchi (Costume Designer) has had the pleasure of Costume Designing Custom Made Theatre’s past productions of Mr. Marmalade and The Heidi Chronicles.  Past theater productions include: Victims of Duty, Mud and The Bald Soprano at the Cutting Ball Theater; The Odd Couple (Shellie Nominated for Best Costumes), Miracle on 34th St., and A Christmas Carol at Lafayette Town Hall Theater.  She has also had the pleasure to work with The California Shakespeare Theater and the SF Playhouse.  Bessie received an AA degree in Fashion Design from FIDM and a BA degree in Speech Communication from Syracuse University. 

Alan Kline (Stage Manager) is Custom Made’s Artistic Assistant and stage managed Cotton Patch Gospel earlier this season. Other recent shows include Shame (Naked Empire Bouffon), The Shape of Things (Work Light Theatre) and Friends are Forever (New Conservatory Theatre). He is a graduate of Oberlin College where he concentrated in directing, helming a dozen shows including Little Shop of Horrors, Torch Song Trilogy, The Fantasticks and his own adaptation of The Yellow Wallpaper. He spent the last summer working with Cal Shakes’ Artistic Learning department and is now a New Works/New Communities assistant there.

Matt Payne (Sound Design) is excited to be involved in his third production with CMT, although only his second as a sound designer (initially appearing in 2007's Assassins on drums and banjo). He is a musician, performance artist and performing arts technician, working at CSU East Bay in Hayward, CA. In addition to occasionally playing in pit orchestras around the Bay Area, you can see him as a multi-instrumentalist in a number of projects, including the all-acoustic All My Pretty Ones, the highly eclectic Portland-based Spesus Christ, or making appearances with the internet's own Pomplamoose or string metal band Judgement Day and any other number of acts. See what other nonsense he has been up to at youtube.com/kineticturtle or kineticturtle.blogspot.com.

Daniel Yelen (Props Master) is delighted to join Custom Made for this production, and to design the diary named in the title.  For over seven years he has furnished props and set pieces for 33 productions of Donald Pippin’s Pocket Opera. As a member of Lamplighters Music Theater, he performed as well as served as props master for five productions.  In 2006, he furnished props for Merrily We Roll Along produced by Altarena Playhouse, and subsequently produced set and costume design for several San Francisco Free Civic Theater productions, in addition to appearing onstage in such roles as Mr. Crabtree (The School for Scandal).  Perennial design credits include San Francisco Opera Guild’s Opera Á La Carte, and San Francisco Conservatory of Music’s Gilbert and Sullivan Scenes.  Last year, he was honored to provide props for the San Francisco Mime Troupe’s 50th anniversary show, and has been invited to continue for their 2010 season.