Gus Menary (he/him)
Gus is a director, producer, and bookworm. He became artistic director of Book-It Repertory Theatre in January 2020. He comes to Book-It after serving as the artistic director of Jackalope Theatre Company from 2015-2020. Under his leadership, Jackalope produced 15 professional shows, 75 individual events, and hosted 200+ guest companies over the course of five seasons. For Jackalope, he directed the critically acclaimed world-premieres of Exit Strategy, The Light Fantastic ( both by Ike Holter), and Life On Paper (Kenneth Lin). He expanded artistic programming by initiating the GroundWorks Series, the CircleUp! Reading Series, and The Jackalope Playwright’s Lab to foster new play development. He was named one of the Fifty People Who Really Perform for Chicago by Newcity Magazine in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020. He is a founding member of The Roustabouts and The Inconvenience, where he served as Director of Theatre Programming. He has worked with many theatre companies including Steppenwolf Theatre Company, A Red Orchid Theatre, American Theatre Company, Mary Arrchie Theatre Company, First Floor Theatre, and Strawdog Theatre Company.
Jeannine Clarke (she/her)
Ms. Clarke joined the Book-It staff as director of development in 2019, having to quickly adapt to a changing global landscape as she began this new role. Her deep experience and expertise in theatre fundraising and administration enabled her to raise almost $400,000 in response to the onset of the COVID crisis, ensuring that Book-It could remain operational, retain staff, and support the shift to producing audio dramas for the first time. Moreover, Jeannine brings a life-long love of theatre and 20 years of nonprofit arts experience to her new position with Book-It. She has previously worked with Jet City Improv, Northwest Girlchoir, and Village Theatre, where she oversaw $1.1 million in annual fund donations and fundraising events. She holds a BA in Drama from the University of Washington, from where she also received a Business Administration Certificate in 2020. Jeannine has also been a professional improviser for 15 years and is a current cast member at Unexpected Productions in Pike Place Market.
Dan Schuy (he/him)
Dan ascended into Book-It’s production manager position with the start of the 2016-17 season. However, his affiliation with Book-It began during the Westlake Avenue North days of 1997, providing the scenic elements for the production of Grendel. For the next decade, he was a frequent scenic designer and “host” for the annual productions of Owen Meany’s Christmas Pageant. He spent 23 years at North Seattle College, where he designed technical elements for over 85 productions, helped students in their course work and beginning careers, and served as the technical director and resident designer for the Theater Department/Stage One Theater. Dan also spent 13 years in many technical, artistic, and educational capacities with the Bellevue Youth Theatre. Currently, Dan is heading into his seventh year working as the technical theatre department/resident designer with the Titan Players at the Bellevue International School. In addition to Anna Karenina, Owen Meany’s Christmas Pageant, and Returning the Bones at Book-It, Dan’s designs have been seen at ArtsWest (BroadwayWorld.com Seattle’s 2010 public and critic’s choice for Best Scenic Design, Evil Dead—The Musical), the Hi-Liners, Sandbox Radio Collective, Seattle Public Theater, and SecondStory Repertory Theatre, among many others.
Technical Director/Master Sound Engineer
Benjamin Radin (he/him)
Ben is a Journeyman stagehand with IATSE Local#15 and is starting his 6th season with Book-It. Previously, he worked for five years as a scenic carpenter at Seattle Rep, and has also had the pleasure of working on-and-off at nearly every Seattle theatre venue. In addition to managing Book-It’s shop, he has recently been working as the Master Sound Engineer for Book-It’s audio productions and had the incredible opportunity to also serve as the sound designer for The Mandala of Sherlock Holmes.
Assistant Production & Company Manager
Max Koh (they/them)
Max is a Seattle-based director, sound designer, reluctant actor, lover of soup-based noodle dishes, and playwright. Max came into their love for Theatre at the age of 1 when they invalidated the purpose of Seattle Children’s Theatre’s beautiful quiet rooms by banging on the window during a production of The Red Balloon. They hold a BA in Theatre from Western Washington University, where they received multiple awards for their directing projects, a healthy love for kombucha, and a keen interest in tabletop roleplaying games. In 2019, Max was the recipient of the Mark Twain Award for Comedy from the National Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival. Recently, Max has decided to take on the task of reading all 1000 chapters of Eiichiro Oda’s One Piece.
Assistant Technical Director
Andrew is joining us after graduating from Cornish College of the Arts (Class of ‘21) and could not be more excited to jump in with this incredible team. His recent works include Tuck Everlasting (technical director 2020), The Spitfire Grill (technical director 2021), and Urinetown (technical director 2021). He was the technical director for the KIDSTAGE Summer Independent Program at Village Theatre in Issaquah and was the head stage carpenter for Village’s Beta Production of Eastbound. He also is currently teaching for Village Theatre KIDSTAGE, to inspire upcoming, young theatre makers! He is so excited to see where this endeavour leads and thanks everyone who has helped him in his journeys.
Scenic Charge Artist/Properties Storage Manager
Jessica Christensen (she/her)
This Pacific Northwest native didn’t know what was in store for her several decades ago when Book-It Repertory Theatre Arts Education visited her school and became her first theatrical experience. Her passion for both theater and painting led her to graduate from Cornish College of the Arts in 2013 with a BFA in Theatrical Scenic Design, with an emphasis in Scenic Painting. In 2012, she became the wardrobe manager and personal props builder for the Stalker Farms Field of Screams Haunted Attraction. In 2015, she became the stage properties and scenic paint supervisor for Cornish’s Production Department. In 2018, she became the scenic charge artist and properties storage manager for Book-It Repertory Theatre. She has been able to work on exciting projects on Book-It’s Mainstage, as well as being able to give back to the Arts Education Department that that started her love for theatre. Through Book-It, she has also had the opportunity to work with Seattle Shakespeare Company on both their Mainstage and Wooden-O shows. It is her belief that painting is the act of taking the abstract thought of one person and transforming it into something that is accessible to everyone. What could be a more fulfilling job?
Costume Shop Manager
Marie Quinn Kramer (she/her)
A love of theater, costume, history, art, and sewing has propelled Ms. Kramer through her eccentric and varied career. She has taken part in over 80 productions of theater, musical, ballet, Circus, and more—holding just about every job title available in the realm of costume.
Conor Fortner (he/him)
Conor is a Seattle-based theater technician and proud recent graduate of the UW Undergraduate Drama: Design program. Over his course of study, Conor had the opportunity to take part in many productions, both as a technician and as a designer, including as the sound board operator for UW’s mainstage performance of Anything Goes, directed by Kelsey Thorgalsen, and as the OBS operator for Rosmersholm, directed by Andrew Coopman. Other notable credits include scenic designer and head scenic carpenter for The Drowsy Chaperone and technical director/master electrician for Company, both with Stage Notes (UW’s resident student musical theatre organization). Most recently, Conor had the honor to sound design for Hailey Henderson’s one-woman performance, Blackout, as well as to serve as the audio engineer for the kickoff leg of her porch tour.
Finance & Operations Manager
Christine Riippi Campbell (she/her)
Christine is proud to be the finance & operations manager at Book-It Repertory Theatre, where she happily processes payments, runs reports, and creates Excel spreadsheets, among other things. Outside of Book-It, she and her husband, Andrew, own Campbell Tax Consulting LLC, a financial consulting business that provides tax, bookkeeping, and payroll services to small businesses and individuals. In addition to her finance and bookkeeping experience, Christine is a local actor and an improvisor with Unexpected Productions. She lives in West Seattle where she can be found walking her two frantic dogs, Gigi and Oskar, and playing with her adorable daughter, June.
Gillian Jorgensen (she/her)
Prior to becoming Book-It’s education director, Gillian spent her time as a Seattle-based teaching artist and playwright. Her storytelling and teaching skills were honed through 25 years of devoted work with students aged 3 ½ to 21, specializing in devised work and creative drama. Gillian has adventured through imaginary worlds with thousands of children, from Seattle to Tokyo, making up new games, characters, and lore along the way. Her original scripts (The Nut-Brown Girl, Tigery and Heavens-to-Betsey Get Lost in the Salad Bar, My Pet and My Dead Pet) and devised projects (Youth Theatre Northwest’s Haunted Forest series and Annex Theatre’s Ghosty series) were inspired and informed by her work with students and the love of complicated and powerful stories. Her years of experience prepared her to lead the Arts Education team at Book-It in selecting riveting titles, developing student-focused curriculum that meshes theater with literacy, and building opportunities for students to strengthen and share their own voices within their communities. A public education wonk, Gillian’s in-depth knowledge of district policies and processes facilitates ease in relationships with teachers at schools across the state.
Arts Education Programs & Booking Manager
Celeste Staples (she/her)
Celeste’s background has been both diverse and flavorful! There are hints of education and curriculum curating, hints of advocacy and communication-centered work, and a few pinches of time spent partnering with marginalized groups! Celeste has a heart for advocacy and for the normalization of mental health conversations. Prior to joining the Book-It Team, she spent her days in early childhood education and worked with play-based, imagination-forward, and social-emotional learning to help raise up a generation of people who are well-rounded and well-equipped to move healthily through the world. She is passionate about meeting people where they are and intentionally making room for humanness in places it is often overlooked. Here at Book-It, one of Celeste’s goals is to help to redefine the way we think about art and re-imagine what role it can and does play in our world. She wants to emphasize the importance of it in our schools, in our conversations, and in our society. She wants to make art more accessible and partner with you to bring it into the spaces most important to you.
Lisa Sanman (she/her)
Prior to joining Book-It, Lisa spent most of her career (18 years) at Portland Center Stage (PCS), a $10M+ regional NW theater, where she played many roles—including development director, their first human resource director, associate managing director, co-chair of the DEI Committee, board liaison, and artistic and development assistant. To date, a career highlight was the privilege of partnering with the PCS and Armory Theater Boards to manage a $38.6M capital campaign to purchase an historic building as a home for PCS, while the demolition plans were being drafted. The Armory was saved and repurposed as a Platinum LEED certified building and a two-stage performance/community space. Prior to her career at PCS, Lisa was the first executive director of the Audrey Skirball-Kenis (ASK) Theater, a private foundation, whose sole purpose was to invest in new voices and new work with programs at the Mark Taper Forum, Lincoln Center, and The Royal Court in London. Lisa is a graduate of UCLA with a degree in theater arts.
Marjel van Dijk (she/her)
Marjel grew up in the Netherlands with a love for the English language, which led her to study English literature and linguistics in the Netherlands and Scotland. The Fringe Festival in Edinburgh and Shakespeare plays in London were some of the highlights of her time spent in the UK and Marjel is excited to be part of the Book-It team to see great literature come to life on stage. Since Marjel arrived in the United States in 2010, she’s worked for nonprofits in Seattle and Portland that supported immigration rights, celebrated cultural diversity, and created global connections. In her spare time, she and her family enjoy biking through the neighborhoods of Seattle.
Annika Bennett (she/her)
Annika currently serves as Book-It’s grantwriter and content specialist. She is a playwright, dramaturg, and writer of hit mystery thriller podcast What Happened in Skinner, and has held literary and dramaturgical internships at the Goodman Theatre and Seattle Rep.
MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS
Marketing & Communications Director
Brandon Jepson (he/him)
Brandon has come to Book-It after 15 years at Jet City Improv as Production Director, where he produced over 100 shows, performed in a handful of long-form improvised plays, and performed in flagship short-form show over 600 times. He also directed a number of long-form improvised plays, including Clues, Over and Through, World’s Fair, and The Monster Hunters. He also stage managed, did graphic design, some set design, and taught numerous quarters of Improv 101. He was also the Executive Producer of the Seattle Festival of Improv Theater for over 10 years (over the years welcoming about 200 improv groups and performing for a collective total of 35,000 audience members). He has also been seen on such Seattle stages as Open Circle (Madness Out of Time: The Case of Charles Dexter Ward), West of Lenin (The Call of Cthulhu), Union Garage/Theatre Babylon (Jesus Christ Superstar), Theater Schmeater (Money & Run), the Give-Inn, The Phoenix Theatre, and 14/48. He has lived in Seattle all his life and hold a BA in Drama from the University of Washington. He currently resides in the Bitter Lake neighborhood with his wife, son, and their tortoise Gilda. He enjoys cryptozoology, the Muppets, and keeping his cabinets organized.
Patron Services Manager
Alejandra Guzmán-Dyrseth (she/they)
Alejandra is Book-It’s patron services manager and has been in our box office since 2016. She is a queer, Chicana, lifelong Seattleite with a passion for classic horror, roller derby, and social activism.
Social Media Manager
Jose “JoJo” Abaoag (he/him)
Jose is a Seattle-based actor and a graduate of Cornish College of the Arts who has been working in the local theatre scene since 1999. Jose has also worked behind the scenes in various marketing and public relations roles at Sound Theatre Company, Seattle Children’s Theatre, and ACT. He has been a teaching artist for Book-It on many local and regional educational tours in the past, and he played Henry Lee in Book-It’s 2013 production of Jamie Ford’s novel Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet. Jose is the proud father of two—Kofi and Joona, who both enjoy reading all of the book selections, educational material, and testing interactive story kits from Book-it’s Arts Education department. If you support bringing great literature to the stage, he reminds you to please remember to Like, Share, Repost, Subscribe, and Retweet your support of Book-It Repertory Theatre. @bookitrep
Front of House Manager
Annie Jankovic (she/her)
Annie is excited to be the new front of house manager for Book It! She also works as an actor, director, and disability theatre consultant in the Seattle area. She loves the work that comes from managing the front of house and is pleased she gets to engage in that with in-person performances once again. Annie is very passionate about disability and accessibility in theatre and is happy to get to use that experience for patron services and enhancing the theatre-going experience for disabled audiences. She is currently also the accessibility coordinator at Sound Theatre Company.
Annika Bennett (she/her)
For bio, see Development listing