The Play Incubation Collective Developmental Residency Ensemble is a seven-member ensemble of multidisciplinary theater artists includes:
Playwright & performer, Mary Beth Brooker is interested in work that plays with theories of the mind and consciousness, and in work that witnesses, but doesn’t judge, how actions and intentions are often divergent with seemingly both comic and tragic results. Assessment of the consequences and results can be richly ambiguous, creating a kind of suspension of full understanding. A portrait emerges of the earnest efforts and convolutions we make to live with each other and with ourselves. There is usually at least one character at the end of life.
Her own work is very physical in nature. The body is usually involved in some way that amplifies the play’s question. For example, a dementia story involved shadow-play figures, a play about a marital lie included parlor games about phantom limbs and optical illusions. Natural images and phenomena also play a part. A play about emotional abandonment included the forest fungal network, another, in progress, that concerns a rural couple at odds with the digital age, is set against the problem of space debris from satellites.
And laughter is essential.
Tracy (she/her/hers) has nearly a decade of experience bringing play, movement & drama to classrooms, dance studios, cabins, zoom screens, and other ridiculous spaces. Her goal as a teacher to foster embodied resilience through community, creativity, and craft. She believes the arts are a unique place for people to discover creative agency, in the studio and in their lives.
Her NYC teaching artists credentials include the Public Theater, Hunts Point Children’s Shakespeare Ensemble, Redbull Theater Company, LeAp NYC, Arts Ignite, Completely Ridiculous Conservatory, and more. She’s been an Alexander Technique Teacher at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, the Balance Arts Center, and Completely Ridiculous Conservatory. Pedagogical training includes Lincoln Center Education (Teaching Artistry), Christopher Bayes (Theatrical Clowning), and the Balance Arts Center (Alexander Technique). She’s currently furthering her training with Somatic Experiencing®, and learning from her amazing 2.5 yr-old.
For Tracy, acting is a practice, a passion, and a part-time profession. Through the lens of neuroscience, she views it as neural exercise. Through the lens of life, she views it as fun.
As a performer in NYC Tracy was a founding member of Modern Shakespeare Project & Clown Gym, and performed with Hudson Warehouse theater company and the award-winning, Wilder Project. Since moving to Western MA in 2020, Tracy’s performed with Silverthorne Theater Company in The Taming (Bianca), and staged readings of Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley (Mary Bennet), and Born with Teeth (Shakespeare). She’s a member of Play Incubation Collective’s devised theater residency, 2022-2023, Field Notes from a Feminist Theatre Potluck.
Author. Artist. Fishbird. Unicorn. Katrina Goldsaito makes work for children, adults and once unicorns. She writes about loss, everyday grief and unexpected mourning. She writes about wonder.
ReachYou received a Transformative Public Art Grant from the City of Boston after their time in Kazakhstan working with space nomads at the GoViral Festival! They love sharing transmissions from the future with new Archivists and hope that they can ReachYou. She’s loved sharing The Sound of Silence and honored to be on NPR's Books of the Year List, People Magazine's 12 Best Books of the Year, and Brainpickings' Best Children's Books of the Year. Writing about mourning and her sister, she spent three amazing weeks at Hedgebrook and the work in progress was also a finalist for the Sustainable Arts Foundation Award!
Deep in two National Geographic anthologies you can find stories of her journeys around Japan. Or if you prefer a small town in Nicaragua, find her in The Christian Science Monitor. With Beau Kenyon and Julia Kuo they made fantastical new sounds here, We Doki Doki. She circles around a lot of the same themes. She loved presenting at Mixed Remixed. For Boston's NPR (at 43:15), she explored multiracial identity and kikokushijo for The Japan Times.
If you like time machines, here's a list of more things she’s written.
Rachel Hirsch spends most of her time these days in her home recording studio, narrating audiobooks across genres. You can hear her in books by New York Times bestselling authors in YA, children, fantasy, mystery, and more. She also narrates romance under the pseudonym Rose Dioro.
Specializing in accents and character voices, Rachel is well sought after for her changeling capabilities. One of her favorite projects involved her voicing 10+ characters of various ages and with accents and dialects from around the world. Her primary focus is audio books, but she always enjoys taking on industrials, radio plays, animation work, and anything else she gets an opportunity to explore.
Along with voice over, Rachel is a life-long stage actor whose "dream role" doesn't exist yet. Her true dream is to play a character from its first reading to its opening night on Broadway! In other words, Rachel's passion is new works. This love for new play development led her to co-found Play Incubation Collective, along with her collaborator Sarah Marcus.
Having had the privilege of working with some of the industry's best vocal instructors, Rachel prides herself on her musical versatility. A classically trained vocalist, with a lifelong focus on musical theater, Rachel stepped outside of the box in 2016 and started music and storytelling outfit Golden Bird. Golden Bird delights children and their grownups with its creative storytelling and folk and jazz inspired original tunes on ukulele, guitar, kazoo, and any other fun portable instruments Rachel can find.
Rachel currently lives in beautiful Western Massachusetts with her family. She has a 23 year old turtle named Edmund who has traveled the country with her. And while everyone was getting pandemic dogs, Rachel got 5 pandemic chickens. In March 2013, Rachel welcomed her first child and, in August 2017, her second. Mom is the most exciting role she has ever played!
Sarah Marcus is a Northampton-based theater artist, educator, producer, and mother. In 2019 she co-founded Play Incubation Collective (PIC), a local launchpad for new theatrical works. She also directs the Youth Performance Festival, a yearly free opportunity for youth artists to create original performance pieces under the guidance of mentor artists. Her mission across all her work is to widen the canon of stories we experience, and celebrate the power of artistic community. Sarah has performed locally in PIC’s Piedmont Plays, Northampton's 24-hour play festival and Greenfield's Double Take Fringe Festival. Outside of Western Mass, she has created and performed work at the Emerging Artists Theatre NYC, Cleveland Public Theatre, NY International Fringe Festival, and HERE Arts Center, among others.
A director, actor, maker, and educator based in Western Massachusetts, Brianna Sloane is co-founder of TheatreTruck, a mother-owned collaborative crafting mobile & site-specific performance, sustainably and playfully. She is passionate about excavating place-based stories and lifting up marginalized stories through research-driven devising and development work.
She makes work that centers physically awake storytelling and embraces theater as a vehicle for community building.
She cares deeply about diverse representation in theatre and expanding the canon. As a producer-director she works to cultivate socially conscious productions with refined detail and honed artistry and she brings the same high standards and thoughtful processes to her classroom.
She holds an MFA in Directing (UMass Amherst), BA (Hampshire College), and a certificate for intensive study of physical & mask theatre and Commedia dell’Arte at the Accademia dell'Arte (Arezzo, Italy).
Alexandra Wittner hails from Salem, Massachusetts. She studied ballet and modern dance for twelve years before delving into acting her sophomore year of high school. She studied acting at Emerson College and was active in the comedy community there, serving as the president of her comedy troupe. While still in school, she spent two years performing in Diane Paulus' The Donkey Show, at the American Repertory Theatre.
Upon graduation, she moved to Chicago to train at iO for nine months before settling in Los Angeles. She studies clowning with the Wet The Hippo Collective as well as writes and directs original plays. In spring of 2018, along with collaborators Hilton Dresden and Cooper Vacheron, Alexandra wrote and performed in the short film Enjoy Your Stay!, which was accepted into the Portland Film Festival.
Wittner is a theater artist and human doing their best. She has lived, studied, and performed in Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, and Boston’s North Shore. They are surprised and pleased to still be making theater.