Grumbling Gryphons is available for performances, workshops or a combination of both. The number of performers/facilitators varies depending on need and show selection. Shows and workshops are appropriate for family audiences and children in grades K-8. Special performances and workshops are given for pre-school ages.
Actor Sam Waterston, left, watches as Gov. John G. Rowland presents one of five 2003 Governor’s Arts Awards to Leslie Elias, artistic director of Grumbling Gryphons Traveling Children’s Theatre, at the Shubert Theater Tuesday, June 17, 2003 in New Haven. The awards recognize artistic achievement and contributions to the arts in Connecticut.
Leslie Elias is the artistic director and co-founder of Grumbling Gryphons Traveling Children's Theater—winner of the 2003 Connecticut Governor’s Arts Award. Playwright, actress, storyteller, and long time theater director—she is also the proud mother of twin boys Arieh and Daniel who will turn seven this summer. She has had over 35 years of experience as a creative drama specialist, working with children and adults throughout this country as well as in Israel, Ukraine, Greece, and Ireland.
She directs an annual theater arts summer program in Cornwall, CT. and has been the Artist-in-Residence in many schools across the United States. As a playwright, Ms. Elias has authored numerous plays based on environmental themes, history, poetry, myth, and folk legends from around the world.
Leslie Elias - Teaching Artist:
LESLIE ELIAS (Director, Playwright, Mermaid Queen, Horseshoe Crab, Ghost, She-Teppa- She and others roles)Leslie has been teaching theater arts, music, movement and storytelling for over thirty years in the U.S. and abroad. She runs an annual theater arts camp in Cornwall, CT. every summer. In addition to her own camp, this summer she will serve as children’s program director for Elat Chayyim at Isabella Freedman in Falls Village, Connecticut. She has written numerous plays for and with children. She traveled to Ukraine to work with children of Chernobyl victims bringing them joys, songs and stories. She conducts drama residencies exploring issues and creating shows with elementary and high school students on themes such as teaching tolerance, celebrating cultural diversity, building self-esteem, poetry and myth. She lives happily in West Cornwall, CT. with her husband Larry Saed and her vibrant twin boys Arieh and Daniel soon to be five.
DALE ADAMS (Musical Director, Arranger and Keyboard Accompanist) Since 1991, Dale Adams has played keyboards with Grumbling Gryphons adding his masterful musical touch to almost every production. He has performed as keyboard player with Cuba Gooding, The Main Ingredient, as well as a host of other national acts. He composes, teaches jazz piano and lives in Harwinton, CT with his wife and daughter.
ELLEN MOON(Costumes, Mask Maker, Scenery) For over twenty years Ellen has been making masks, costumes and sets for Grumbling Gryphons. During that time she has led myriad workshops in which thousands of children have made their own masks and costumes. She is also a fiber artist and her one of a kind jackets have bee shown in galleries throughout the U.S. In 2004 the Connecticut Commission on the Arts awarded her an artist’s fellowship.
LINDSAY DEWINKELEER is native to Berkshire County where she continually performs throughout the region. She will be graduating from Berkshire Community College as a theater arts major this spring, and was most recently seen on the Boland Stage as the title role in William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar. Lindsay has been a core member of Grumbling Gryphons for the past two years and looks forward to many more! Her greatest passions in life are performing, teaching children the joy of theater and sharks. Other past roles include: Rose in “Hot, Not Iced”10 Shorts, Lady of the Lake in “Spamalot,” BCC, Isabella in “Shakespeare's Love & Greed,” BCC, Ulla in “The Producers,” BCC, Malcolm in “MacBeth,” Fall Festival at Shakespeare & Co, Akane in “Cartoon,” BCC, Helena Glory in “Rossum's Universal Robots,” BCC, Sylvia in “All Shook Up,” Barrington Stage Company, and Florinda in “Into the Woods,” Barrington Stage Company.
JULIUS REESE is thrilled to be working with his fellow company members of the Grumbling Gryphons. Originally from Pittsfield, Julius has spent the past year with the Grumbling Gryphons Traveling Children's theatre company performing shows based on African tales, Greek myths and environmental themes. Some of Julius' other credits include Troy in “Hot, Not Iced,” Lysander in “Midsummer Night’s Dream,” and he will be playing Paris in the 2015 production of “Romeo and Juliet” with Pittsfield Shakespeare in the Park. I would like to thank my friends and family for their endless love and support!
MATT RUSSELL is a 21-year-old actor and high school graduate of the Devereux Glenholme School in Washington CT. A native New Yorker, Russell has appeared in several feature films including “The Silver Linings Playbook,” “I Heart Huckabees,” “Fly Away,” “The Fighter” and “American Hustle.” His most recent movie appearances were as extras in “Joy” and “ Jack and the Red Hearts” soon to be released. Stage credits include: Jafar in “Aladdin,” Gargoyle in “Beauty and the Beast,” Uncle Henry/Guard in “Wizard of Oz,”Mortimer in “The Fantasticks “Big Jule in “Guys and Dolls”. Russell started acting in 2010 at the age of 16 and currently performs with Grumbling Gryphons Traveling Children’s Theater. He joined the company in 2013. Some of his dramatic roles include Sludge-The Trash Creature in “The Ghost Net: An Environmental Musical of The Sea” as well as Chief of The Plains in “Trickster Coyote Shares the Fire”,“Sunnyside Up” in The Myth of Persephone and Lion Cub in “Anansi the Trickster Spider.”
JOHNNY SEGALLA grew up in North Canaan and now resides in Berkshire County, MA. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Theater at Russell Sage College in Troy, NY while simultaneously studying puppetryand designing/building puppets for such children’s theater productions such as “Seussical,” “Peter Pan,” and “The B Bomb” (a children's tour to combat bullying) at the New York State Theater Institute. Since college he has worked extensively as a Drama Therapist in 1-on-1 sessions for children with Autism as well as adults with disabilities.
KEITH DARBY (Seagull, and Sea Magic-the Dolphin) Keith lives in Charlotte, North Carolina where he choreographs and teaches dance in schools and ballet companies. Fifteen years ago his path crossed with Grumbling Gryphons while they were touring in the Charlotte Magnet Schools. He auditioned and joined the tour shortly thereafter performing for years in their major productions. He performs as Anansi in Grumbling Gryphon’s production of Anansi--the Trickster Spider: A West African Folktale. Keith is a graduate of University of North Carolina School of the Arts and has trained with Pittsburgh Ballet Theater, Dance Theater of Harlem as well as the Hungarian National Opera School of Ballet.
NOTES From the Director: Leslie Elias would like to thank the entire staff of Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center. You’re all a joy to work with and I wish you well in all your performances and future ventures, Thank you to Mira for helping to co-ordinate the event and Laura for help with publicity.
Special thanks to Jenny Hersh for getting the ball rolling and her vision of an Earth day Community town wide collaboration.
Thank you to the staff at Berkshire South Regional Community Center. You do wonderful work with children and provide great programming!
Thank you to Berkshire Co-op for making the masks with the children for Earth day 2007.
Thank you to Ann Condon of.
And David Whitcomb from WSBS.
Thanks to Falls Village artist Jude Streng for her creation of the Factory Puppet Building.
Thank you to all the volunteers who helped with making masks with the children.
Most of all- thank you to the children participating today in the show and children everywhere-than you for being you!
Let’s keep the waters clean and be guardians of the earth!
Enjoy the show!