Talent runs deep at Teatro ZinZanni and we have been privileged to present vocalists ranging from the iconic Joan Baez to the rock powerhouse Ann Wilson, the saucy cabaret star Lady Rizo to the grande dame of France, Liliane Montevecchi. Our comic improvisational stars include Frank Ferrante, Kevin Kent, Geoff Hoyle and Christine Deaver to name a few who have kept the laughs coming all night long. And our world-class cirque artists that leave our audiences in awe represent a wide range of talented performers including Vita Radionova, Viktor Kee, Joel Salom, Elena Gatilova and Voronin.
About the Cast
Lady Rizo aka Amelia Zirin-Brown is a NYC based performance artist, comedienne, singer, composer, and actor. Received with critical raves three years in a row at the Assembly Festival in Edinburgh, she won the inaugural Time Out London and Soho Theatre Award, and the 2013 London Cabaret Award. She is also a Grammy winner for a 2010 collaboration with Yo-Yo Ma. A recipient of the New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship, her original pieces have shown at the Public Theatre in New York (Joe’s Pub resident artist for 3 years), London’s Leister Square Theatre, and the Sydney Festival (nominee for a 2013 Helpmann award). Along with Yo-Yo Ma, she has recorded with Moby and Reggie Watts. Her debut album is entitled Violet and her second album Indigo will out spring 2017 at www.ladyrizo.com.
Andrea Conway Doba
Actress, dancer and acrobat Andrea Conway Doba weaves her comic magic as Mitzi. Andrea spent nine years with Cirque du Soleil, touring with Saltimbanco throughout Asia, Europe and North America performing the Chinese poles and one the of only girls to solo jump 35 feet in the air off the Russian swing. During this time she was honored to perform with the late Michael Jackson, with Peter Gabriel at the Grammy Awards, the Queen Majesty in London and featured on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. An accomplished athlete, Andrea was a member of Canada’s national gymnastics team and earned a Bronze Medal in the 1987 Pan-American Games. She fell in love with Wayne Doba at Teatro ZinZanni in San Francisco, one tap lesson has blossomed into 13 years of marriage and counting. She will also be appearing in this falls kids show with a new character Tippi Tap and is excited to be co-directing the new spring show along side Reenie Duff.
For 24 years Ariana performed with the Pacific Northwest Ballet (PNB). Born and raised in California, Ariana received a scholarship to the PNB School before joining the company as an apprentice in 1987. The following year she was promoted to corps de ballet, became a soloist in 1993, and was named principal in 1994. Ariana toured with PNB both nationally and internationally. She performed the role of Hippolyta in the BBC’s 1999 film version of PNB’s production of Balanchine’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream filmed at Sadler’s Wells Theatre in London. Her performances won numerous accolades including being featured on the cover of Dance Magazine. Her final PNB bow came in June 2011. Ariana’s ZinZanni career began in September 2011 and includes roles in Bonsoir Liliane!, Dinner at Wotan’s, Hacienda Holiday and four children’s shows. She was assistant choreographer for On The Air and choreographer for Return of Chaos, Hollywood Nights and the children’s shows Curious Circus, Dream On and Lighter Than Air. Ariana is elated to return to the center ring in the newest ZinZanni production of Be Italian!
Christine Deaver is an actor, singer, writer, director and voiceover artist. She has worked with Teatro ZinZanni for 12 years and has created such characters as Penelope Wilde, Film Noir Man, Juliet, Voluptuous Panic, Vivian Beaumount, Cassanova, Teresita Guadalupe Teresita que Bonita Vamos a la playa con Teresita, Adalita, Tina Romanelli , etc. She has worked extensively in theatre, film, and television in Los Angeles and abroad and is a recipient of numerous Garland, Ovation, and L.A. Weekly awards for her work in the theatre and as a member of the Zoo District Theatre Company in Los Angeles. She has written and performed several one-woman shows including “Ah, Families”, “Leave it to Deaver”, and “Bodacious” and toured them across North America, Asia, and Europe. Christine was recently seen in the production of “Seeing Red” in Los Angeles. She returns to Teatro Zinzanni Seattle after her smash hit latest one-woman show “Showgirl” debuted in Puerto Vallarta and Ajijic, Mexico. “Showgirl” is also the title of her solo CD that you can conveniently purchase in the boutique here at TZ. Fancy that!
Forever getting caught up in unpleasant and highly embarrassing situations, Mr. and Mrs. Maier solve their dilemmas through sheer force of will and grim determination and their naive and gentle nature always wins the day. Sabine Maier and Yogi Mohr, the creators of these delightfully comic characters, have lived and worked together since 1988. After studying circus-skills and performing arts in Brussels, Paris and Bristol they have put their stamp on many of the most innovation circus and theatre productions as comedians and with their hilarious trapeze act. Based in Berlin, they have toured the world the past 25 years now, always together with their three children! They have been part of the “ZinZanni family” almost from the very beginning and they previously appeared in 10 different productions under the Teatro ZinZanni tents in Seattle and San Francisco.
An acclaimed actress, producer, aerialist, choreographer and musician, Dreya headlined in Teatro ZinZanni’s, Hail Caesar! Gangsters Of Love, When Sparks Fly and The Hot Spot. She produced and stars in the feature film Raven’s Touch as well as A Marine Story and The Gymnast, honored with 48 international festival awards including seven ‘best actress’ wins. As aerial choreographer, Dreya conceived Pink’s celebrated 2014 and 2010 Grammy performances, deemed “transcendent” by Oprah Winfrey. Choreographic credits include Michael Jackson, Cher, Madonna, Taylor Swift, Britney Spears, Katy Perry, Kylie Minogue, Rihanna, Christina Aguilera, and all of Pink’s tours. Writing credits include Raven’s Touch, Club Seduce, and Gangsters Of Love. Dreya recently starred in the documentary Driven, and is proud to be a part of the P90X workouts – 1, 2 & 3. Dreya has starred in plays all over the world and will be returning to Holland this winter to appear in Ola Mafaalani’s Fellini at the NNT.
Ben Wendel and Rachel Nehmer met as biology students at Haverford College. After a successful stint as lab partners, the couple decided to test out their chemistry on a trapeze suspended from a madrone tree. Duo Madrona created their duet at Seattle’s School of Acrobatics and New Circus Arts (SANCA), and made their debut at the 2006 Moisture Festival. In the years following they have logged thousands of performances across the US and Europe, including the 29th Festival du Cirque de Demain, Circus Flora, Tigerpalast Variete, Palazzo, Circus Monti, Circus Syzygy, Flynn Creek Circus and an appearance on French television with Patrick Sebastien’s Le Plus Grand Cabaret du Monde. Ben and Rachel have been exploring the rich theatrical universe of Teatro Zinzanni since 2009. From monster to mayor, from scientist to chorus girl, to falling down the rabbit hole and ending up in the same Alice dress, the duo has brought to life a wide variety of memorable characters. In real life, the duo is based in Seattle and are proud parents of their 1-year-old son, Dylan.
Elena Gatilova spent fifteen years mastering her skills as a rhythmic gymnast. A several-time national champion, Elena is the recipient of various prestigious international awards. After finishing her professional sporting career, Elena left Ukraine to perform all over the world. Elena was featured as a principal acrobatic character and lead dancer in the Las Vegas show Zumanity. She also appeared in Playboy, Vanity Fair, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Last Call with Carson Daly, and in the movie LoveSick. She has worked with world-renowned artists such as Cher, Thierry Mugler, David LaChapelle, Luca Tommassini, and Bill Goodson. Further work includes performances in the Italian TV show, Chiambretti Night. Recently, along with Dita Von Teese, Elena highlighted the sexy high-end cabaret show TABOO, directed by Franco Dragone.
Performing March 2 - May 21, 2107
Probably best known for her duet and back-up vocals with quirky country composer Lyle Lovett, Francine Reed was born to sing. The Chicago-born songstress began her professional career as a child singing in her family’s gospel group. In time her repertoire expanded to include sweet soul and brassy blues. Throughout her career she shared the stage with legendary stars such as Miles Davis, Smokey Robinson, Etta James, and The Crusaders. Of course her strongest alliance is with Lyle and she provides him and the Large Band with an indelible stage presence and harmonic textures, which have entranced fans and critics worldwide. In addition to her touring schedule with Lyle, Francine has appeared on recordings by Delbert McClinton and Roy Orbison. Her most recent release is Live at Eddie’s Attic. In October 2014, she was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame receiving the “Pioneer Award”, and is working on a new release called Wild Hearted Woman.
Frank Ferrante is an actor and director whose acting and improvisation was dubbed “masterful” by the Chicago Tribune and “artful” by The New York Times. Frank originated the title role in Groucho: A Life in Revue written by Groucho’s son Arthur in New York, London and on PBS. He earned New York’s Theatre World Award, a NY Outer Critics Circle and London’s Laurence Olivier nomination for ‘Comedy Performance of the Year.’ For three summers, he played his one-man An Evening With Groucho at Seattle’s ACT Theatre. Following this run, Frank is touring 35 cities in Australia with the show. In 1995, he directed and developed the premiere of the Pulitzer finalist Old Wicked Songs. Frank guest-starred as a talking mime on Rob Corddry’s Emmy-winning Childrens Hospital, is a voice on the animated Garfield and SpongeBob SquarePants shows and was a question on TV’s Jeopardy. Frank has been a regular at Teatro ZinZanni since 2001. On August 10th, Frank will perform An Evening With Groucho in the Teatro ZinZanni tent as a special event.
Joe De Paul
Performing May 21 - September 17, 2017
Canadian actor, writer, teacher, director and clown Joe De Paul, has been seen at Teatro ZinZanni portraying such Characters as Ricky La Rue, Captain Canada or Giuseppe Mezzanote ( the guy with the Salami). Joe is a veteran of numerous Cirque du Soleil productions, including his debut as a clown in the North American tour of Dralion. Joe’s unique physical comedy has brought him critical acclaim in various circuses and cabarets in Europe including Salto Natale in Zurich, PALAZZO in Germany, and Cirque Zanzibar in France. Joe was invited as a Star Clown to the Kulture Fabrik in Luxembourg as well as guest star at the festival of Humor in Antibes, France. Joe’s career has scaled numerous heights, including appearances in over 20 film and television events.
Joel Salom is an Australian smarty-pants. Not only does he have “crackerjack timing, ambidextrous expertise and astounding balance” (LA Times), he also juggles his two kids, an international stage career, and his new worldwide business, Chuka Chuks! He seems to have somehow reinvented juggling, made it musical and is sharing it with the world. Joel has toured extensively as a comedy juggler throughout Europe, Asia, Australia, New Zealand, and the US. He is excited to be back in Seattle with his family, to play with his other family, Teatro ZinZanni.
A physical and improvisational humorist, Kevin Kent was a cast member of the original Teatro ZinZanni show in Seattle in 1998 and the subsequent debut show in San Francisco in 2000. To continue his streak of ZinZanni firsts, he was part of the first Teatro ZinZanni touring production in Southern California. Kevin combines his writing, odd notions, and his improvisational skills to transport the audience to exciting and wonderful places. Kevin and his partner, Joe have a brand new company called K. Kent Co. Performance (Look them up on Facebook.) Their inaugural production, Eulogy, a memorial for a loved one, is created new each night from family photo’s supplied by the audience. K. Kent Co. is developing their second production with Imogen Love. The show, Dear John is a meditation on the eccentric shoe designer John Fluevog and a woman who loves him. Kevin and Joe live in the mountains of Northern New Mexico. Seattle and Teatro ZinZanni is their home away from home.
Living legend, actress, dancer and diva, Liliane Montevecchi returns to Seattle in the original production, Hotel L’Amour. Best known for her Tony Award-winning role in Tommy Tune’s Nine and in Grand Hotel, Montevecchi’s illustrious career spans four decades. Born in Paris, she joined Roland Petit Ballet as a prima ballerina at age 18, spent seven years under contract to MGM, appearing in movies opposite Elvis Presley, Marlon Brando and Fred Astaire, and more. For 10 years, she was the star of The Folies Bergere in Paris and Las Vegas. Her most recent film is How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days, with Matthew McConaughey. She has starred in musicals such as Irma La Douce, Gigi, Hello Dolly, and La Plume de Ma Tante. Audiences have applauded her performances at Carnegie Hall, Radio City Music Hall, and at Lincoln Center in a concert version of Follies. On TV she guest-starred in more than 20 shows, and was nominated for an Emmy for Playhouse 90s’s Child of Our Time. She has taken her own highly acclaimed show, On the Boulevard, around the world, and played in prestigious cabaret venues including the Algonquin, the Russian Tea Room and Rainbow and Stars and has recently performed her one-woman show to standing ovations in London and Paris. In Paris she received the Boulevard Award for her role as Mistinguett at the Opera Comique. Along with being knighted a “Dame” for her time spent doing humanitarian work, she was recently honored by the French Minister of Culture as the ”Officer of Arts and Culture” to France and the world at large.
Rui has been performing and training in the circus arts since he was very young. At the age of 10 he joined the Flag Circus of China where he traveled worldwide. In 2000, he joined Cirque du Soleil’s “Dralion” and toured North America and Europe for five years. In 2006, Rui joined another Cirque production “Delirium” with his straps act. He presented his act and received numerous prestigious awards including the gold medal at the Wuhan International Acrobatic Arts Festival. Rui was also a finalist of “Amazing Chinese” TV show. In 2010 ¡Caliente! marked the debut of his straps act with Teatro ZinZanni, since then he has worked three years on and off with TZ. In his off-stage time, Rui is focusing on transition into Artistic Direction most recently he finished a world class aquatic production in China by Franco Dragone as Assistant Artistic Director.
Russian performance artist Svetlana blends modern dance, pantomime skills, magic, and contortion in the creation of her sensational puppet act. Undulating, shifting, transforming right before your eyes, Svetlana’s puppet has been warmly received by the audience as both a highly skilled acrobatic performance and as a new comedic and romantic character. Trained in the ancient art of contortion from the age of nine, Svetlana studied at the Kiev Municipal Academy of Circus and Variety Arts and has performed at some of Europe’s most distinguished venues including the Wintergarten and the Apollo, Palazzo.
Ukrainian born juggler Viktor Kee has been performing on stage since he was six years old and graduated from the professional Academy of Circus Arts in Kiev. A favorite with audiences around the world, Viktor has performed at the Moulin Rouge, Lido de Paris, the Friedrichstadtpalast in Berlin, the Mirage, and the MGM Grand with Barbra Streisand in Las Vegas. He has also toured internationally with Cirque du Soleil’s “Dralion” and “Amaluna”. Quite possibly the world’s best juggler, he has developed a unique, mesmerizing style of juggling that melds dance, acrobatics and juggling into a wondrous ballet of sensuality. Recently, Viktor founded the nonprofit “Viktor Kee Foundation” which focuses on giving back to communities by creating charity missions around the globe where: Art Helps the World! Viktor made his Teatro ZinZanni debut in 2008 and is excited to return to Seattle in “Hotel L’Amour”.
A featured performer in the 2003 Tiger Lilies circus tour of Finland, France, England, Germany and Greece, the sensational Ukrainian contortionist and hula-hoop artist Vita Radionova made her North American debut at Teatro ZinZanni in 2004. She graduated from the legendary Circus School of Kiev in 1999, and since then has performed her elegant and sensual act at some of the finest venues in Europe, including the Apollo Varieté in Dusseldorf, Palazzo in Munich and Frankfurt, and with Circus Salto Natale in Zurich. Enchanting, mesmerizing and sensuous, Vita defies the laws of physics with her performances. In 2015, Vita was a quarter finalist in America’s Got Talent Season 10. She is looking forward to premiering her new act in Be Italian! with Mickael Bajazet.
Known throughout the world as “The Maestro”, Ukrainian-born illusionist Voronin has been described as the essence of Buster Keaton and Jacques Tati. After graduating from renowned Kiev Academy of Circus and Variety Arts and Russian University of Theater Arts, Voronin founded his own company, The Theater of Cagliostro. He is an acclaimed recipient of first place in magic competitions in Germany, Moscow, and Austria; Monte Carlo Magic Stars award, Magic Hands Grand Prix, Siegfried and Roy prize for Master Magician, and The Great Lafayette award. Well-known in the world of magic for his unique style, director’s vision and original character creation, Voronin is one of the most sought-after stars of the European cabaret circuit. He is returning to Seattle fresh from his most recent appearance at the International Festival of Magic in Madrid, Spain. An original cast member from the first 1998 tour, this show marks Voronin’s 24th Teatro ZinZanni performance.
Hailed by Donald O’Connor as a “throwback to the old Vaudeville days,” actor, dancer and comedian, Wayne Doba has performed professionally for almost four decades, has created five one man shows, and is an original Teatro ZinZanni cast member. He has shared the stage with dance legends such as the Nicholas Brothers and Honi Coles. His stage and screen credits reflect the diversity of his talent and experience; and include the role of The Creature in classic horror flick, The Funhouse, Octavio the Clown in Brian De Palma’s gangbuster hit, Scarface, and appeared as Tex the Barker in Prague, for The Freak Show, an opera by the enigmatic rockers, The Residents. Wayne was also (believe it not) the original Crazy Crab, anti mascot for the San Francisco Giants. He was recently featured in ESPN’s, 30 for 30 Shorts: The Anti-Mascot directed by Colin Hanks.