Performance Programs

Performance Programs > 2023-24 Season >  Theatre & Drama

Intimate Apparel

written by Lynn Nottage

Department of Theatre & Drama
September 28 – October 1, 2023 and October 5 – October 8, 2023 • The Arthur Miller Theatre

Esther, a gifted Black seamstress in 1905 New York City, lives in a boarding house for women, where she makes a good living sewing intimate apparel (and keeping intimate secrets) for her clients. As she saves for the kind of future with a husband and family that she can’t have with the Hasidic shopkeeper who has captured her heart, she begins a deeply personal correspondence with a mysterious suitor laboring on the Panama Canal.

Steeped in evocative historical detail, Intimate Apparel delves into the inner lives of characters in search of connection.

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Creative Team

Judith Moreland

Scenic Designer
Kevin Judge

Lighting Designer
Elianna Kruskal

Costume Designer
Summer Wasung

Sound Designer
Henry Reynolds

Karin Waidley

Voice & Dialect Director
Jeremy Sortore

Resident Intimacy Choreographer & Cultural Consultant
Raja Benz

Mayme’s Piano Double & Music Consultant
Tyler Driskill

Production Stage Manager
Ava Moye

‡ SMTD Student

+ SMTD Guest Artist

Assistants to the Creative Team

Assistant Director
Victoria Vourkoutiotis‡

Assistant Scenic Designer
Dallas Fadul‡

Associate Sound Designers
Eric Cerruti Lisboa De Oliveira‡, Claire Niedermaier‡

Student Dramaturgs
Ty Amsterdam‡,  Addison Stone‡

‡ SMTD Student

+ SMTD Guest Artist


Myah Bridgewater

Mrs. Dickson
Sophia Lane

Mrs. Van Buren
Bella Detwiler

Mr. Marks
Sammy Guthartz

Gilayah McIntosh

Lenin Izquierdo


u/s Mrs. Van Buren
Sarah Hartmus

u/s George
Myles Mathews

Running Crew

Sound Operator  Paige Ashley

Deck Crew (Scenery)  Robert Farr-Jones, Adam Rogers

Deck Crew (Props)  Ashni Pothineni, Nicholas Wilkinson

Wardrobe Crew  Matthew Eggers^, Nova Brown, Blake Letourneau

Wig Crew  Vanessa Dominguez

^Crew Head

Shop Crews

Theatrical Lighting  Shira Baker, Abi Farnsworth, Sydney Geysbeek, Ethan Hoffman, Elianna Kruskal, Brandon Malin, Megan Mondek, Christian Mulville, Gabriela Ribeiro Znamensky, Kathleen Stanton-Sharpless, William Webster, Miles Zoellick

Painting  Gilayah McIntosh, Bella Rowlison, Martha Sprout, Seri Stewart, Lauren Streng, Ellie Vice, Amber Walters, Angela Wu & Theatre 250/252/262 students

Props  Eliza Anker, Danielle Bekas, Andy Blatt, Madysen Casey, Aquila Ewald, Dallas Fadul, Audrey Hollenbaugh, Lucy Knas, Teresa Morales, Charlotte Stallings, Audrey Tieman & Theatre 250/252 students

Scenery  Marium Asghar, Juliet Bornholdt, Andy Blatt, Anna Forberg, Miles Hionis, Hannah Kryzhan, Michael Russell, Sophia Severance, Lauren Streng, Eliza Vassalo & Theatre 250/252/262 students

Costumes  Maya Liu, Esmay Pricejones, Kaytlin Sanchez, Ellie Van Engen & Theatre 250/252/262 students

Production Office  Briana Barker, Justin Comini, Estie Hwang

Production Crew

1st ASMs Katie Kutzko, Frannie Walton

2nd ASMs Lewis Jackson, Stuart Sheffield

Assistant Master Electrician Kathleen Stanton-Sharpless

Video Consultant Colin Fulton

Light Board Operator Eliza Anker

Design & Production Faculty Advisors

Head of Design & Production  Christianne Myers

Stage Management  Nancy Uffner

Scenic Design  Jungah Han, Kevin Judge

Costume Design  Christianne Myers, Sarah M. Oliver

Lighting Design  Jess Fialko

Sound Design  Henry Reynolds

Staff Mentors

Brittany Crinson, Heather Hunter, Chad Hain, Beth Sandemaier

Department of Theatre & Drama

Tiffany Trent

Department Manager/Artistic Administrator
Kathryn Pamula

Walgreen Events Manager
Nickie Smith

Performance and Studio Manager
Arie Shaw

Walgreen Office Coordinator
Tyler Brunsman

Christina Traister (Area Head), Halena Kays (Directing Advisor), Daniel Cantor (Acting Advisor), Raja Benz, Mark Colson, Antonio Disla, Jake Hooker, Holly Hughes, Tzveta Kassabova, Geoffrey Packard, Jeremy Sortore, Malcolm Tulip, Tiffany Trent

Christianne Myers (Area Head), Laura Brinker, Patrick Drone, Jess Fialko, Jungah Han, Kevin Judge, Richard W. Lindsay Jr., Sarah M. Oliver, Henry Reynolds, Nancy Uffner

Theatre Studies/Playwriting
Amy E. Hughes (Area Head), José Casas, Shavonne Coleman, Antonio Cuyler, Antonio Disla, Jenna Gerdsen, Jake Hooker, Petra Kuppers, Ashley Lucas, Mbala Nkanga, Jay Pension, Alexis Riley, Emilio Rodriguez, Karin Waidley

Arts Management
Michael Avitabile, Antonio Cuyler, Matthew Dear, Aaron Dworkin, Afa Dworkin, Ken Fischer, Gala Flagello, Andrew Kuster, Jonathan Kuuskoski, Kari Landry, Jay LeBoeuf, Robin Myrick, Jay Pension, Jesse Rosen, Omari Rush, Anna Sampson, Ari Solotoff

Scott Crandall, Holly Hughes, Tzveta Kassabova, Malcolm Tulip

Professors Emeriti
Alan Billings, Peter W. Ferran, Erik Fredricksen, Jessica Hahn, Philip Kerr, Priscilla Lindsay, Janet Maylie, Vincent Mountain, John Neville-Andrews, OyamO, Leigh Woods

University Productions Administrative Staff

Executive Director
Jeffrey Kuras

Sr Administrative Specialist
Christine Eccleston

Sr Administrative Assistant
Nathan Carrillo

Information Systems Manager
Henry Reynolds

Facilities Manager
Shannon Rice

Performance Halls
House Manager
Kelley Krahn

Lead Backstage Operations Manager
Dane Racicot

Senior Backstage Operations Manager
David Pickell

Backstage Operations Managers
Tiff Crutchfield, Alex Gay, Yvette Kashmer, Robbie Kozub

University Productions Production Staff

Production Manager
Paul Hunter

Assistant Production Manager
Michelle Williams-Elias

Technical Director (Walgreen)
Richard W. Lindsay Jr.

Theatrical Scenery Manager
Chad Hain

Lead Scenic Carpenter
Devin Miller

Scenic Carpenter
Heather Udowitz

Charge Scenic Artist
Beth Sandmaier

Associate Theatrical Paint Manager
Madison Stinemetz

Theatrical Properties Manager
Patrick A. Drone

Associate Theatrical Properties Manager
Danielle Keys

Senior Properties Artisan
Dan Erickson

Visiting Theatrical Hair and Makeup Manager
Brittany Crinson

Theatrical Lighting Manager
Heather Hunter

Associate Theatrical Lighting Manager
Jorrey Calvo

Sound Designer/Engineer
Henry Reynolds

Costume Shop Manager
Laura Brinker

Assistant Costume Shop Manager
Leslie Ann Smith

Lead Cutter/Draper
Tj Williamson

Seth Gilbert, Sarah Havens

Rene Plante

Theatrical Stitcher
Marcia Grace

Lead Costume Crafts Artisan
Elizabeth Gunderson

Costume Stock Manager
Theresa Hartman

Wardrobe Manager
Rossella Human

Theatrical Properties Stock and Tech Coordinator
Katherine Kreutz


Setting: 1905, Lower Manhattan.

Presented by agreement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc., New York, NY.

The performers in this production were students in the Department of Theatre & Drama. The designers for this production were students, faculty, and/or guests of SMTD. Scenery, costumes, properties, sound, and lighting were realized by the students and staff of University Productions, the producing unit of the SMTD. Thank you for supporting our educational mission.

Not available for this production.

Lynn Nottage (Playwright) is a playwright and a screenwriter. She is the first, and remains the only, woman to have won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama twice. Her plays have been produced widely in the United States and throughout the world. Most recently, Nottage premiered MJ the Musical, directed by Christopher Wheeldon and featuring the music of Michael Jackson, at the Neil Simon Theater on Broadway; Clyde’s, directed by Kate Whoriskey at Second Stage Theater on Broadway; and an opera adaptation of her play Intimate Apparel composed by Ricky Ian Gordon and directed by Bart Sher, commissioned by the Met/Lincoln Center Theater.   

Her other work includes Floyd’s (retitled Clyde’s) (Guthrie Theater); the musical adaptation of Sue Monk Kidd’s novel The Secret Life of Bees, with music by Duncan Sheik and lyrics by Susan Birkenhead (the Almeida Theatre/the Atlantic Theater); Mlima’s Tale (Public Theater); By the Way, Meet Vera Stark (Lilly Award, Drama Desk Nomination; Second Stage/Signature Theater); Ruined (Pulitzer Prize, OBIE, Lucille Lortel, New York Drama Critics’ Circle, Audelco, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle Award; MTC/Goodman Theater); Intimate Apparel (American Theatre Critics and New York Drama Critics’ Circle Awards for Best Play; Center Stage/SCR/ Roundabout Theater); Fabulation, or The Re-Education of Undine (OBIE Award; Playwrights Horizons/Signature Theater); Crumbs from the Table of Joy; Las Meninas; Mud, River, Stone; Por’knockers; and POOF!

Bio excerpted from

It is remarkable to find a piece that highlights the unseen experiences within the broader fabric of history. Not just America’s imperialist incentives under the Roosevelt administration, but examination and inquiry into the life and efforts of a Barbadian building the Panama Canal to support another nation’s expansion; not just the motion and shifting politics of Progressive Era Manhattan, but the stories and music of a Tenderloin sex worker held in both the center and the outskirts of change; not just the Great Migration whose waves built cities, but those who came before, the lone refugee who forged a way to a new world without family or full pockets.

Because this is what Lynn Nottage does: brings light to the shadows and quilts together the pieces of the zeitgeist. Fashions futures from a forgotten past.

Much of the dramaturgy work for this show took the form of deep research and presentations on the political climate of the time. A glimpse into how people left out of history still lived day to day. From the pages of an 1862 cocktail guide on how to properly serve brandy punch to a party of 20, to the painstaking route a Panama laborer would have endured moving from the Caribbean to Ellis Island, to what transit fees for the 1905 trolley cars, carriages, or the novel subway of a daily commute must have been, to the unequal and many times unbearable conditions for people of color laboring toward a common goalto better their lives, to connect vast oceans over land. These are just a few of the ways we hoped to help the cast and creative team pattern the world to which you now bear witness. But our dramaturgical work went past the page and the rehearsal stage to learning the nuances of the characters who now live beyond Nottage’s words. We facilitated a discussion with the cast and Rabbi Goldstein of the Chabad House on Orthodox Judaism and the devoutness of  belief; we sat in on table work to engage a conversation full of life based in memories from the past, and we hope to connect the performance stage to classrooms, to campus, to the community at large, and beyond. Because Nottage’s play deserves to be seen and heard. And, like a precious piece of lace, treasured.

For more information from the dramaturgy team, scan here:

Lynn Nottage wrote Intimate Apparel after finding an old photo of her seamstress great-grandmother who lived in New York City in the early 1900s. Knowing little about the life she must’ve led, she started doing researchonly to discover the dearth of first-person accounts of the marginalized, immigrant, and under-represented populations of what was arguably the most diverse city in the world at that time. Clearly someone somewhere deemed their stories as not worthy of much documentation so their histories were largely ignored, overlooked, or erased. 

Because she found so few contemporary accounts, Ms. Nottage as she often has in her work, created a space to let the underrepresented speak for themselves. The result is the beautifully rich, warm, and fully realized world of 1905 New York that you’ll experience today. I hope that watching Esther, Mayme, Mr. Marks, and the others live their lives will remind you that there are many, many stories missing from our collective history and if it weren’t for the resilience of people like these characters, most of us wouldn’t be here in the theatre tonight.

Enjoy this gorgeous jewel of a play.

Judith Moreland, director