Celebrating our 5th Decade!

About Grumbling Gryphons

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.

Governors Art Award
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.

Watch the video...

Read more about the 2003 Connecticut Governor’s Art Award.

See Grumbling Gryphons In Action!

Click on a video to watch a brief excerpt....

Leslie Elias   About Leslie Elias

Leslie Elias is the winner of Connecticut Office on The Arts 2018 Arts Hero Award and The Northwest CT Arts Council's 2018 CultureMAX Award for Arts Educator. 


Leslie Elias is a playwright, actress, storyteller and theater director who has been teaching drama in schools, theaters and public venues for over 40 years.  She is the artistic director of Grumbling Gryphons Theater established in 1980 and recipient of the 2003 Connecticut Governor’s Arts Award.  In 2011 she was recognized as a Teaching Artist and Solo Performer in the Directory of Connecticut Office for the Arts. Ms. Elias directs an annual theater arts summer camp in Cornwall, CT and has been an Artist-in-Residence in many schools throughout the United States. 

As a playwright, Ms. Elias has authored numerous plays based on history, poetry, environmental themes and folklore from around the world. Her artistic mission is to provide children with an educational theater experience that is both participatory and empowering.


Leslie is the recipient of the The State of Connecticut, Office of the Arts 2018 Arts Hero Award for the NorthWest Connecticut region. Listen to this recent interview with Leslie and J. Timothy Quirk on Nutmeg Chatter.

Leslie Elias at Hero Arts Day in Hartford. Photo credit @ Nick Cinea photography

Recipients at Hero Arts Day in Hartford.

CT Arts Day 2018 - produced by Nild Sansone

Leslie Elias - Teaching Artist:



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 35 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 puppetry and 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.



For more information about Grumbling Gryphons contact grumblinggryphons@gmail.com