Production Bios & Headshots
Through the Looking Glass (And What Alice Found There)
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Jump To: Alison Kolisnyk, Jordan Hrynkiw, Heather Forgie, Lauren Marshall, Brian Dougherty, Daniel Gilmour, Richard Panganiban, John G. Hansen, Matthew Paris-Irvine, Chris Reid, John Chase, David King
Alison Kolisnyk is pleased to be making her first appearance with Merlyn Productions.
Alison has been on hiatus for several years, having last graced Winnipeg stages as part of FemFest with Sarasvati Productions: appearing as Angelina in “Cowboy Boots and A Corsage” (2003), in “Martha in the Corner” (2004), and in the one-woman show “A Kick in the Head” (2006).
She has performed in many of Winnipeg's live theatre venues – including the Centennial Concert Hall and MTC's – and has been looking forward to working on the Forrest Nickerson Theatre stage.
Alison began studying acting, musical theatre, and dance as hobbies in her adult years. Recently, dance has been her primary recreational activity, and she has taken classes in various styles including jazz, tap, hip hop, modern, and African.
Offstage, Alison's “real world” revolves around hospitality, coordinating her front desk team in one of Winnipeg's vintage downtown hotels. Her other interests include travel, photography, horseback riding, and Zumba.
Alison extends cheers and hugs to her friends and family for their continued inspiration and support in her pursuit of happiness!
Jordan Hrynkiw is making her fifth mainstage appearance with Merlyn Productions, and was most recently seen playing the title role in “Puss in Boots” at the 2014 Winnipeg Fringe Festival. Past appearances include “Ming Lee and The Magic Tree” at the 2013 Fringe, Kimberly-Kay in “Wind of a Thousand Tales” during the 2012 Season, and “The World of The Brothers Grimm” at the 2012 Fringe.
Currently, Jordan is in her fourth year of acting classes at the Winnipeg Theatre School. She previously took two years of acting at Fantasy Theatre for Children and The Theatre School, and two years of musical theatre classes at Manitoba Theatre for Young People.
While at Fantasy Theatre for Children, Jordan's mainstage appearances included “The Stolen Prince” in 2011, and “Max and The Grinch” in 2010.
Offstage, Jordan loves music. She has taken five years of guitar and three years of voice lessons, and is currently in her fourth year playing flute in the school band.
Jordan is a grade 10 student at Miles MacDonell High School.
Heather Forgie became the Property Mistress at Merlyn Productions in 2014. She stage managed for the first time while working on “The Anniversary” for ChekhovFest 2014, and made three appearances with the company during the prior two seasons in “Ming Lee and the Magic Tree”, “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs”, and “Wind of a Thousand Tales”.
In addition to being an actress, Heather is a playwright, and occasional director. Recently, she became the artistic director of fellow local theatre company R-G Productions.
Heather is a graduate of the University of Winnipeg's theatre and dramatic arts program, and is currently employed as a high school Drama and English teacher.
Having once upon a time taken a few years off from the acting scene to have children and establish herself as a teacher, Heather is now back full-force. She looks forward to many further creative endeavours with the company!
Lauren Marshall is excited to be making her theatrical début with Merlyn Productions as the White Queen in “Through the Looking Glass”!
Lauren is a teacher outside of Winnipeg.
Offstage, she enjoys reading, making music, and quoting “The Lord of the Rings” films.
Brian Dougherty is making his ninth appearance on the Merlyn Productions mainstage, reprising his 2011 role as the Engine-Driver in “Through The Looking Glass”! His recent appearances include Tschubukov in “A Marriage Proposal” for ChekhovFest 2014, The King in “Wind of a Thousand Tales”, and multiple roles in “Ming Lee and The Magic Tree” at the 2013 Winnipeg Fringe Festival.
After once venturing briefly onto the stage with a self-written solo comedy routine for the local “Free Laughs Comedy Series”, Brian decided to pursue theatre in earnest. He enrolled in the Spring 2011 session of “STAGE ONE: Adult Theatre” at the theatre school, and performed with the class in Dramatic Showcase 2011.
Brian's first major community theatre production was with Chase & Hamill, creating multiple characters in “HEY ABBOTT! - Another Classic Comedy Tribute Show” at the 2011 Winnipeg Fringe Festival.
Behind the scenes, Brian has actively contributed his carpentry talents to the scenic departments of many productions. He was a key member of the crew that brought Castle Wrath into being for “The Wraith of Wrath” in October, and also served as the Rehearsal Stage Manager for the company's ShawFest2012 production of “Augustus Does His Bit”.
Daniel Gilmour is excited to be back onstage in his third appearance with Merlyn Productions, and has always had a great experience! He initially appeared as Tolkachov in “A Tragedian in Spite of Himself” for ChekhovFest 2014, and was last seen portraying Ugolin the Ogre in the company's 2014 Winnipeg Fringe Festival hit “Puss in Boots”.
ChekhovFest in January marked Daniel's return to the stage after a several-year hiatus. He appeared in two previous Master Playwright Festival productions: “Arcadia” with Theatre Incarnate in StoppardFest 2007, and “Sexual Perversity in Chicago” with Theatre Anywhere in MametFest 2008. He was also a regular with the Black Hole Theatre Company, both onstage and backstage, for several years.
Away from the theatre, Daniel is an Early Childhood Educator and looks after a gaggle of toddlers. He is an avid board game player, a maybe-too-obsessive sports fan, and wannabe Karaoke star.
Daniel thanks his family and friends for their love and support.
Richard Panganiban is making his first appearance with Merlyn Productions.
Richard has done choral and live theatre performances for more than eight years. His training includes two years of theatre courses at the University of Winnipeg.
Currently, Richard volunteers at St. Joseph's Church as a part of the Choir, Catechist, and Youth Group. His other non-theatre activities include co-managing a website, editing videos, and video gaming.
John G. Hansen
John Hansen is making his second appearance with Merlyn Productions, and is currently enrolled as an Adult Acting student at the Winnipeg Theatre School. He previously appeared as the Director of the Deputation in “The Anniversary” for ChekhovFest 2014.
Most recently, John appeared onstage as Uncle John in “Our Name”: part of the 2014 Scirocco Drama Manitoba Highschool Playwriting Contest.
On screen, John has played lead roles in three short films for University of Winnipeg students, entitled “Thaumaturge”, “Debt Cycle”, and “White”. He also played a supporting role as Uncle Joe in a full length film called “The Tan Man”.
John's previous training includes classes at the Prairie Theatre Exchange and the Winnipeg Film Group.
Outside of the theatre, he enjoys playing classical guitar, drawing, painting, and practising tai chi.
Matthew Paris-Irvine is excited to be making his first appearance with Merlyn Productions in “Through the Looking Glass”!
Matthew is an 18-year-old arts student, currently attending the University of Winnipeg with a passion for the theatre.
His recent theatre credits include multiple roles in “Giving Voice” with Sarasvati Productions, as well as Dylan Overton in “Runaway” with Lucky Cat Theatre at the 2014 Winnipeg Fringe Festival. Past roles in high school productions include Zozer in “Aida”, John Tate in “DNA”, and Lord Byron in “Hideous Progeny”.
Matthew’s formal theatre training comes from both Manitoba Theatre for Young People and Grant Park High School. He draws his inspiration for the stage from great actors such as the late Philip Seymour Hoffman, Tom Hanks, and of course, his mentor: Ms Victoria McMahon.
Chris Reid is making his fifth appearance with Merlyn Productions, and is thrilled to be reprising his 2011 role as the White Knight! He was most recently seen as King Thrushbeard in the company's 2012 Winnipeg Fringe Festival hit, “The World of The Brothers Grimm”.
Chris has been acting in Winnipeg since 1994, and has appeared with several companies, including Merlyn Productions, Fantasy Theatre for Children, and Marketplace Players.
His voice may be familiar to you: Chris has been an on-air personality at several Manitoba radio stations over the past decade, including 680 CJOB, Power 97, TSN 1290, and Energy 106.
John Chase is the Artistic Director of Merlyn Productions Theatre Company, and an acting instructor at the Winnipeg Theatre School. As a Winnipeg actor, director, producer and stage manager, he marked his 100th local production with “Wind of a Thousand Tales” in 2012.
John is a veteran of theatre for young audiences, having produced multiple Kids Fringe best-sellers, and worked extensively in children's theatre with Fantasy Theatre for Children, both on and behind the FTC mainstage for twenty seasons (1991 – 2011). He directed multiple shows for G.D. Productions (FTC's adult arm), and is an alumnus of The Theatre School, where he obtained five years of formal training under Tony Frost in the early-to-mid 1990s.
John founded Merlyn Productions after his Co-Artistic Director at C.G. Productions departed Winnipeg in 2000, and has produced full seasons of plays at local venues and festivals each year since 2009. As one half of the critically-acclaimed Chase & Hamill act, John is also known for portraying quintessential straight man Bud Abbott of Abbott & Costello fame, alongside performing partner Kevin Hamill (Lou Costello).
John first staged “Through The Looking Glass” during the 2011 Season, and is thrilled to be re-mounting it as the first official Merlyn Productions title back at the familiar Forrest Nickerson Theatre!
David King is stage managing his fifth show at Merlyn Productions, and has made five previous onstage appearances with the company. He last stage managed “A Marriage Proposal” for ChekhovFest 2014, was most recently seen onstage at the 2013 Winnipeg Fringe Festival, playing the Property Man in “Ming Lee and The Magic Tree” at the Kids Venue.
For more than twenty years, David has been involved in both amateur and professional theatre, and has worn many hats, including acting, set construction, and stage management, with theatre companies in Toronto, Ontario and Cornwall, Ontario, as well as Wichita, Kansas.
On the film and television scene, David is currently working as a background performer on the new television series “The Pinkertons”. He has been involved in several films and commercials shot locally in Winnipeg.
See Also: Playbill & Credits