Shakespeare’s Lost Masterpiece

April 5-14, 2019

This fierce and controversial play is about a burnt-out professor of literature who discovers that a homeless man unknowingly has Shakespeare's lost manuscript. When the homeless man refuses to surrender the priceless manuscript, the professor shows he is willing to do anything to obtain the play. Full of twists and turns and ruthless integrity, the play is a seductive journey climaxing into a heavenly-hellish ending. Warning: contains explicit language and themes.

Meet the Cast

Arthur Gregory Pugh:  (Homeless Man)
This is Arthur's debut at Center Players, and he welcomes the opportunity to take the stage. A professional voice-over talent who has done commercials for the NY Red Bulls and the FDNY, Arthur took improv classes with John Swist of QuickThinking Improv in NYC to enhance his VO skills, but it steered him more into the field in acting, and landed him a role as Mr. Irving in the independent film Downshift. He’s appeared in music videos by Jadakiss, Ain’t Nothin’ New and Dyme-A-Duzin (That Chicken) and on an episode of Investigation Discovery’s True Crime with Aphrodite Jones. Other theatre credits include Fences (Troy Maxson), A Soldier’s Story (Sgt. Waters), Radio Golf (Roosevelt Hicks), Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner (John Prentice, Sr.) and as Johnny Cochran in the comedy So You Think You’re Godd. Arthur is dedicating these performances to the Brooklyn Technical High School Class of '84, celebrating their 35th Anniversary... without him. Such is actor's life. You can keep up with all things AGP at  www.ArthurGregoryPugh.biz

Will Salmons: (Ivan)
This is Will’s first production with Center Players. Will is an Adjunct Theatre Professor and Director at Ocean County College as well as Rowan at Burlington County. Will received his Masters in Performance from the University of Louisville and his BA in acting with light design from Shenandoah University. Previous positions held were Director of Education for Kentucky Shakespeare and Surflight Theatre. Prior to moving back to NJ, Will worked 15 years as Director, Road Manager, and Actor for The Columbus Children’s Theatre in Columbus, Ohio. Will would like to thank Darrell for this opportunity and David for his support and understanding.

Danielle Cornell:  (Joyce)
Danielle is an actor from Sayreville, NJ, who has performed on stage, as well as in TV and movies throughout NY and NJ. Danielle graduated from The American Academy of Dramatic Arts NYC. She is a member of The Company Theatre Group of Hackensack NJ. When Danielle is not acting, she teaches creative movement for children. This is Danielle’s first show at Center Players and she would like to thank Darrell and Marina for this wonderful opportunity! 

Sequoia Davis:  (The Nurse)
Acting is something Sequoia has always enjoyed growing up. Sequoia’s first theater role was with Dunbar Repertory Theater Company as Rose in Bronzeville Gold in 2011. At the time, Sequoia was studying theater in Brookdale Community College (BCC), Lincroft, NJ starting in 2010. She’s played Lady in Brown in Ntozake Shange’s, For Colored Girls and PattieMae Wells in Samm-Art Williams’, Home. She continued performing in more plays produced by Dunbar and even one after graduating in 2013. She was introduced to the Duncan Smith Theater and did a reading as Alma Winemiller in Tennessee Williams’, Summer and Smoke. In 2014, Sequoia attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts (AADA) in Manhattan, NY. Her training there exceeded her expectations and she greatly appreciated it. She’s worked on numerous scenes written by different playwrights including August Wilson, George Bernard Shaw, Arthur Miller, and more. Sequoia has made many discoveries about herself during her theater work and is willing to go above and beyond to continue honing in on her craft, learning more and more about herself.

Kristina McKinney (Helen)
A divorced mother of 3, Kristina, attended Rutgers University for Child Psychology. She has previously worked in fugitive recovery all over the state of New Jersey and now lives locally, in Freehold, working as a substitute teacher. Shakespeare's Lost Masterpiece will be her debut with Center Players. Kristina is very excited to be a part of this wonderful Production!!! She is hoping to begin a career in theatre, and see where it goes from here. Kristina’s role as Helen, Ivan’s Literary and Financial Agent who looks out for her clients’ best interests is a natural fit for her personality. She is truly an optimistic “get down to business” woman. Kristina is grateful to have been given a chance to express her artistic side which has been hidden for many years. Kristina would like to thank everyone working on this production as well as her family and friends who have supported her all the way through.

Darrell Lawrence Willis, Sr. (Director)
A native of Long Branch, New Jersey and one of eight Willis brothers of 185 Monmouth Avenue. He graduated from Long Branch Senior High School, Class of 1970. Mr. Willis remains close to his roots and follows the high and low tide of the Green Wave. Mr. Willis holds a B.A. in Communications and Theatre Arts from Susquehanna University in Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania and a M.A. in Theatre Studies from Montclair State University in Upper Montclair, New Jersey.  He has also studied extensively at Rutgers University (Mason Gross School of the Arts) with Harold Scott, Avery Brooks, William Esper, and Glenda Dickerson. Mr. Willis is a retired Adjunct Professor of Theatre Arts, at Brookdale Community College, Essex County College, and Ocean County College. Recent producing, directing and acting credits include:  Black Nativity, Radio Golf, A Raisin in the Sun, A Lesson Before Dying, Jitney, The Meeting, Seven Guitars, Dream-girls, Murder in the Cathedral, Crimes of the Heart, Home, Butterfly Confessions, Green Honey Love, A soldier’s Play, Hamlet, Macbeth, Othello, The Amen Corner, The Obama Effect, Two Trains Running, Hambone, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Oklahoma, Cyrano, DeBergerac, Joe Turner’s Come and Gone, and For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf.