SUSAN CHARLOTTE (Writer, Founding Artistic Director and Producer) – Susan’s multi-faceted career started with Prism Blues. Based on her work as a prison counselor, the play earned her a place in Columbia’s MFA program and won the prestigious Joseph Kesselring Award. Her 60 full-length & one-act plays have enjoyed productions throughout the country. They include: The Shoemaker starring Danny Aiello, directed by Antony Marsellis; Sublet; Twenty Litres Of Petrol; She’s Of A Certain Age, The Round Table (with Peter Stone) and The Hairdresser. Her play, Love Divided By, originally produced by the Actors Studio, was made into a film with an original score by Philip Glass. The film reopened MoMA’s Titus II theatre. Susan also collaborated with Emmy-Award winning composer, Billy Goldenberg. TV credits: CBS– the “Comedy Zone” with Patty Duke & Paul Reiser, “Guiding Light” and shows for Lifetime. Films include: Something Like That, A Broken Sole, Come On (Hamptons Film Fes.) & Out Of Your Hands. Articles: “NY” & “Playbill”. Books: “Creativity” & “Creativity in Film”. Teaching: Columbia University & NYU. She served as a judge–Cable Ace Awards & the Albee Festival. She is the Founding Artistic Director of FFTP & Cause Celebre Productions. Her play, When Truth Is Not Enough, dir. by Antony Marsellis, toured the country. She’s working on a new series for PBS. In addition, Susan is working on several plays and screenplays, including: The N Word, Wake-Up Call and Too Fragile For Life.
JOHN E. DONNELLY, ESQ. – Upon graduation from Cornell University, and Columbia University School of Law, John Donnelly began his legal career with the law firm of Sullivan & Cromwell, from 1963 to 1970 in its antitrust and litigation group. He then joined the legal department of American Standard, Inc. (1970- 1973), and was Counsel to The Deltec Banking Corporation in Nassau, Bahamas from 1973 to 1975. He was then, from 1975 to 2003, Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of the Carey Energy Group, 60 companies comprising the petroleum, shipping, and nonprofit interests of Edward M. Carey. He entered private practice after Mr. Carey’s death in 2003, and has represented a wide variety of business and nonprofit clients, and boards of directors, in the areas of corporate and commercial law, corporate governance, petroleum and shipping law, antitrust, nonprofit governance and law, contracts, real estate and tax law. In the nonprofit area, he is serving as a director, secretary and counsel to The Mabel Mercer Foundation, Cause Célèbre, the Coffee House, and the Dutch Treat Club.
MARIAN SELDES (Emeritus) – Appeared at Primary Stages in Terrence McNally’s Dedication, or the Stuff of Dreams. Her many Broadway credits: 45 Seconds From Broadway, Deathtrap (Tony nomination), The Merchant, Equus, Father’s Day (Tony nomination, Drama Desk Award), Before You Go, A Delicate Balance (Tony Award), Tiny Alice, The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore, A Gift of Time, The Wall, The Chalk Garden, Ondine, The High Ground, The Tower Beyond Tragedy, That Lady, Crime and Punishment, Medea. For Lincoln Center Theater, she has appeared in Dinner at Eight, Ring Round the Moon (Tony nominations) and Ivanov. Off-Broadway: Diff’rent, The Ginger Man (Obie), Isadora Duncan (Obie), Painting Churches (Outer Critics Circle Award), Richard II, Richard III, Mercy Street, Dear Liar, A Bright Room Called Day, Three Tall Women, The Torch-Bearers, The Butterfly Collection, The Play About the Baby, Helen, Play Yourself and Beckett/Albee. Williamstown Theatre Festival: The Royal Family, The Matchmaker, The Skin of our Teeth and the premiere of Dedication. She received the Obie Award for Sustained Achievement and was inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame in 1996. She authored The Bright Lights: A Theatre Life and Time Together, a novel.
CAROLE SHELLEY Broadway: A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder; Wicked, originated the role of Madame Morrible, Cabaret, Showboat, The Last Night of Ballyhoo, The Odd Couple, The Miser, Stepping Out (Tony nom.), Noises Off, The Elephant Man (Tony Award), Hay Fever, The Norman Conquests (LADCC Award), Absurd Person Singular (Tony nom.), Loot. National tours: Broadway Bound, The Royal Family and Noises Off. Rep: The Country Wife, Macbeth, Twelfth Night, Romeo and Juliet, The Club, Dear Antoine, Waiting for the Parade, King Lear, Taming of the Shrew. Off-Broadway: The Film Society, London Suite, The Destiny of Me, Richard II (NYSF), Later Life (Drama Desk nom.), Cabaret Verboten, What the Butler Saw, Little Murders, Twelve Dreams (Obie), Tartuffe & Lettice and Lovage–West End. TV: “Frasier,” “Gabby,” “Coconut Downs,” “The Cosby Show”. Films Quiz Show, The Road to Wellville, Jungle to Jungle, Devlin, The Super, The Odd Couple. Disney’s Hercules, The Aristocrats & Robin Hood.
FRITZ WEAVER (Emeritus) – Broadway: Chalk Garden (Tony nomination), Miss Lonelyhearts, Angels Fall, Child’s Play (Tony Award), Absurd Person Singular, Ring Round The Moon (Lincoln Center Theatre); Musicals: Baker Street (as Sherlock Holmes), My Fair Lady (1968 revival), All American, directed by Joshua Logan. Off-Broadway: The Way of the World, The White Devil (Derwent Award), Family Reunion, Power and the Glory, Peer Gynt, Great God Brown, Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2. Stratford: Hamlet (title role), directed by John Houseman; Macbeth (title role), directed by Michael Kahn; The Tempest; Julius Caesar; King John. Folger Shakespeare Theatre: King Lear (title role), directed by Michael Kahn. Regional: Tale Told and Sorrows of Frederick (Mark Taper Forum), Beethoven’s Tenth (Ahmanson). Films: Fail Safe, Marathon Man, Black Sunday, Power, Demon Seed, Walk in the Spring Rain. Television: “Holocaust”; “Martian Chronicles” (mini series); “Antigone” (PBS); guest appearances on all networks; Reader Symphony Space Selected Shorts. Married to the actress Rochelle Oliver.
Director of Education and Outreach/Producer
MARY J. DAVIS – Director of Education and Outreach for Cause Célèbre and our sister company, Food For Thought Productions. With Cause Célèbre, she has produced Tennessee Williams’ The Pretty Trap; Susan Charlotte’s The Shoemaker and She’s of a Certain Age. She has also produced James Wesley’s Unbroken Circle and Disaster! by Seth Rudetsky and Jack Plotnick. She is a pro bono lawyer for the ACLU. Education: BA (Education) from Arcadia University ; JD from Temple University School of Law; MA (Liberal Studies) from Villanova University.
CHRISTOPHER HART – Began his theatrical career here in New York as a producer, Off Broadway, before being associated with the Tony nominated Song and Dance, by Andrew Lloyd Weber starring Bernadette Peters, and the Tony nominated Blood Knot, by Athol Fugard. He moved to California to produce the TV series based on his father Moss Hart’s and George S. Kaufman’s classic comedy You Can’t Take It With You, starring Harry Morgan. While in LA he became artistic director of the Malibu Stage Company, and as a director his dozens of productions were nominated and won numerous awards, including Ovations, Robbies, Dramalogues, and LA Drama Critics Circle awards. He directed regionally including The Geffen Playhouse, and several theaters in Chicago. For television he directed for the HBO series, “Tales From The Crypt” He is pleased to have recently returned home to New York with his beautiful wife, the Robbie Award winning Beth Taylor Hart, and daughter Emma.
ANTONY MARSELLIS (Resident Director) -is a Film, Theatre and TV director. In a long career in theatre (over 50 plays) Antony has directed most of the popular works of all the major playwrights. He has also directed: Amira Baraka’s Dutchman; Harold Pinter’s Ashes to Ashes & Night School; Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days & Krapp’s Last Tape; Arthur Miller’s A Memory of Two Mondays & The Last Yankee; Athol Fugard’s Statements After an Arrest…; Eugene Ionesco’s The Bald Soprano; Luigi Pirandello’s The Man with the Flower in his Mouth; Thorton Wilder’s Bernice & The Wreck on the 5:25; and Tennessee Williams’ In the Bar of a Tokyo Hotel & Something Unspoken. He’s directed the stage versions of two of his films, Men of Manhattan & A Broken Sole. He has also brought to stage his PBS film Did you Know My Husband? with Louise Lasser and Carole Shelley written by Susan Charlotte. He has had the privilege of working with Tony and Academy award winners including: Danny Aiello, Peter Bogdonovcih, Zoe Caldwell, Len Cariou, Tyne Daly, Christine Ebersole, Richard Easton, Judd Hirsch, Judith Light, Tony Roberts, Marian Seldes, Frances Sternhagen, Elaine Stritch, Marlo Thomas and Kathleen Turner. Premieres: Susan Charlotte’s The Shoemaker, When Truth Is Not Enough and The Hairdresser; Tom Fontana’s This Is On Me; A.R. Gurney’s The Love Course; and Tennessee Williams’ The Pretty Trap. He is currently collaborating on a new version of. “The Twilight Zone” and directing a new TV series for PBS that is written by Susan Charlotte.