KARYL LYNN BURNS (Rubicon Co-Founder/Producing Artistic Director) founded Rubicon with husband James O’Neil in 1998 and has overseen more than 100 productions for the company, including the World Premieres of Daddy Long Legs (which has traveled to 15 U.S. cities and 4 countries and is currently running Off-Broadway); The Best is Yet to Come: The Music of Cy Coleman (NY Drama Desk Award); Lonesome Traveler (which transferred Off-Broadway and was nominated for Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards); Conviction (co-premiere with Bay Street Theatre); and Cheri Steinkellner’s Hello! My Baby. She also produced the West Coast BeckettFest, which brought international artists to Ventura for a month-long celebration of the works of Samuel Beckett. For over a decade prior to starting Rubicon, Karyl Lynn was CEO of State of the Arts, an arts management and marketing firm. Clients included Ventura Music Festival, New West Symphony, Ensemble Theatre Company, PCPA Theaterfest, Theatre League, Broadway Producer Normand Kurtz, and Tony Award-winning playwright Dale Wasserman. Karyl Lynn worked with students from Oak Meadow School who received the United Nations “Global 500” Award for their work on environmental issues. For The Dream Foundation, she produced a PSA directed by Mimi Leder and starring Jeff Bridges. As an event planner, Karyl Lynn and her staff coordinated the 10th Annual “Cool Comedy, Hot Cuisine” with Robin Williams, Howie Mandel and Bob Saget, emceed by Bob Costas. She managed and promoted a charity concert for Scleroderma Research with singer Sheryl Crow at the Santa Barbara Bowl and coordinated several charity film premieres. For Capps for Congress, she managed a luncheon with Hillary Clinton as keynote speaker. Karyl Lynn is also an award- winning actor and sound designer.
JAMES O’NEIL (Artistic Director Emeritus/Co-Founder, Rubicon Theatre Company) is the Author/Director of the recent Off-Broadway hit Lonesome Traveler, A Journey Down the Rivers and Streams of American Folk, which received both Drama Desk and Outer Critic’s Circle Award nominations. Lonesome Traveler premiered at Rubicon in 2011 and will begin a National Tour in the Fall of 2016 (www.lonesometravelermusical.com). Jim’s Rubicon directing credits include Man of La Mancha, Fiddler on the Roof (Independent Award), Jesus Christ Superstar, A Delicate Balance, The Diary of Anne Frank (Independent Award), The Night of the Iguana, A Streetcar Named Desire (Independent Award), Driving Miss Daisy (NAACP Award), All My Sons (Ovation Award), Sylvia and Gem of the Ocean. Under Jim’s artistic leadership, Rubicon accepted the 2012 Drama Desk Award for The Best is Yet to Come: The Music of Cy Coleman. Other directing credits include The Lion in Winter, The Petrified Forest, Inherit the Wind and regional premieres of A Coupla White Chicks Sitting Around Talking and Drood! While on staff at Landmark Entertainment Group, Jim directed a multi-million dollar animatronics/special effects show in Japan, supervising all aspects of production and creative direction for themed attractions in Sanrio’s Harmonyland. As an actor, he received rave reviews as Pontius Pilate in the 1992-94 National Tour of Jesus Christ Superstar starring Ted Neeley, Carl Anderson and Irene Cara. Other roles include Dr. Prospero in the American regional premiere of Return to the Forbidden Planet at the American Heartland Theatre in Kansas City, John Adams in 1776, The Duke/Dr. Carrasco in Man of La Mancha, Adam in the first reading of Dale Wasserman’s Western Star and Claudius in the Rubicon’s production of Hamlet. He can be heard as Czar Nicholas II on the concept album Rasputin, written by Michael Rapp and starring Ted Neeley, John Hurt and Amanda McBroom; and as Quasimodo on Mr. Rapp’s Quasimodo, Prince of Fools. Later this season Jim will play his own fourth cousin Clarence Darrow, in the one-person play by David Rintels.
BRIAN McDONALD (Associate Artistic Director) appeared in the National Tours of Miss Saigon and Forever Plaid, directing the latter for various regional theatres including Rubicon. Past Rubicon directing credits include Other Desert Cities (five Stage Scene LA Awards including Outstanding Direction and Production), A Tuna Christmas (in which he also appeared) The Sunset Limited; Bus Stop (five Ovation nominations including Best Play); MASTER HAROLD… and the boys (three Ovation nominations including Best Play, for which he earned an Indy Award and Stage Scene LA Award for Best Director); and the World Premiere musical Hello! My Baby, written and conceived by Cheri Steinkellner. He also conceived and directed the critically acclaimed holiday musical revue A Rubicon Family Christmas Concert (2008, 2009, 2012, 2013). Additional directing credits include Tennessee Williams’ Talk to Me Like the Rain and Let Me Listen, Hooters, Our Town, Little Women, Bye Bye Birdie, HONK!, Babes in Arms, Once on This Island, Schoolhouse Rock, LIVE!, Seussical the Musical, Footloose, Urinetown, Godspell, The Drowsy Chaperone and West Side Story. As an actor, Brian has appeared on the on the Rubicon stage in Forever Plaid, The Importance of Being Earnest, Man of LaMancha, A Tuna Christmas and the one-man shows The Santaland Diaries and Buyer and Cellar. Regionally, he has appeared on stage at Denver Center, Theatre Virginia, The Lyric Stage, La Mirada Performing Arts Center, Ensemble Theatre Company, Pasadena Playhouse, Thousand Oaks Performing Arts Center and the Ahmanson. LA Weekly honored him with the Best Supporting Actor Award for his performance as Gaveston in the Circle X production of Edward II directed by Michael Michetti. Brian is a B.F.A. graduate of the Boston Conservatory.
KATHARINE FARMER (Director of International Programming) recently received an Indy Award for her direction of Last Train To Nibroc by Arlene Hutton at Rubicon Theatre Company in Ventura, California, which was dubbed a Critic’s Pick in The Los Angeles Times, and also received an Ovation Award nomination for Best Production of a Play. She has subsequently been invited to return to Rubicon to direct the rest of the trilogy, returning in January 2016 for See Rock City. Katharine has just returned from New York having directed Carey Crim’s short play Glamping at the Samuel French Off Off Broadway Festival and is currently directing an adaptation of The Importance of Being Earnest at The Dominion Theatre, London, as a charity fundraiser for the Duchenne Research Fund. Katharine is the company director of theatre company Dead Posh Productions, which she set up in 2012 to take Still Life (also known as Brief Encounter) to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. While producing a Plays in Progress writing development series at Rubicon in 2013, Katharine discovered 23.5 Hours (now renamed Conviction) also by Carey Crim, which she later directed. Katharine then became the Assistant Director to Scott Schwartz on 23.5 Hours/Conviction on a co-production between Bay Street Theatre in Sag Harbor NY and Rubicon. She has served as Associate Producer and Assistant Director to Rubicon Artistic Director James O’Neil on the Off-Broadway production of Lonesome Traveler, which ran at 59E59 in New York earlier this year; and in 2014 was Assistant Director to Jenny Sullivan on the Off-Broadway production of Wiesenthal at The Acorn in Theatre Row. Katharine has been the assistant to Sir Trevor Nunn on his acclaimed production of Scenes from a Marriage at the St. James Theatre, which starred Olivia Williams and Mark Bazeley. Katharine is a graduate of the University of Warwick.
MICHELE HUNTER (Marketing and PR Manager) is a Los Angeles based theatrical publicist whose credits include the hit magic show “Smoke and Mirrors” at the Odyssey Theatre, the 2015 Fringe Festival Encore! Producers award-winning show, “Dating: Adults Embracing Failure” and “A Woman Called Truth” at the Complex Theatre in Hollywood. For the past five years she has assisted theater publicist Lucy Pollak whose company clients include 24th Street Theatre, Antaeus, DOMA Theatre Company, The Echo Theater Company, Fountain Theatre, International City Theatre, The Matrix Theatre Company, Odyssey Theatre Ensemble, Theatre Planners and Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum as well as numerous independent productions and events such as Third Wednesdays in Culver City Downtown. She has also assisted in marketing campaigns for publicist Judith Borne of Borne Identities and producer Leigh Fortier of Plays411. She was an Ovation voter in 2011-12. In addition to publicity, Michele has served as Assistant Editor and Theater Editor for EyeSpyLA.com, contributing theater reviews, articles and essays. Her reviews and writings have also appeared in Footlights, LA Stage Times, The Tolucan Times, Lesbian News and Stage Happenings. She is a member and supporter of LAFPI (Los Angeles Female Playwrights Initiative). Prior to Los Angeles, Michele was an Equity stage actress, director and produced playwright on Theatre Row in New York City. She also worked at the Museum of Modern Art as a Group Visits Manager. She received her B.A. in English, with double minors in Theater History & Criticism and Philosophy from California State University in Northridge.