Flight of the Monarch


Janet & Mark Gottesman

September 8 – 30

Flight of the Monarch

Written by Jim Frangione | Directed by Jeff Zinn°

About the Play

Due to the overwhelming response during last season’s NeverDark series, Flight of the Monarch now makes its world premiere at Gloucester Stage.

Two middle-aged siblings, Sheila and Thomas, born, raised and still living in a small fishing town on the New England coast. This darkly comic play explores how siblings’ lives are intertwined, what we owe to the people who know and love us best and, how family members’ needs and desires may push the boundaries of what we are expected to do for others.

Directed by GSC Managing Director Jeff Zinn, this world premiere features GSC favorite Rockport resident Nancy E. Carroll.


Sunday, Sept 17 & Sept 24 immediately following the 2pm matinee
While tickets to talkbacks are not required, seating is limited and preference will be given to those who have purchased tickets to the preceding performance

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Nancy E. Carroll

Nancy E. Carroll* (Sheila Callaghan)
Gloucester Stage: The New Electric Ballroom, 4000 Miles, North Shore Fish, Trad, Breath of Life, Doubt, Happy Days, My Old Lady, Collected Stories; Broadway: Present Laughter (Roundabout Theatre); International: The Cripple of Inishmaan, Big Maggie (Druid Theatre, Ireland), Return of the Winemaker (Cork Arts Theatre, Ireland); Regional: Ripcord, I Was Most Alive With You, The Seagull, Rapture Blister Burn, Good People, The Luck of the Irish, Prelude to a Kiss, Brendan, Present Laughter, The Rose Tattoo, Dead End (Huntington Theatre); Rapture Blister Burn (Geffen Playhouse); Our Town, She Loves Me (Williamstown Theatre Festival); Uncanny Valley (Stoneham Theatre); The Year of Magical Thinking, The Glass Menagerie (Lyric Stage); Trad (Tir Na Theatre); The Clean House, Frozen, Sweeney Todd, Kindertransport (New Repertory Theatre); Other Desert Cities, The Savannah Disputation, The Women, Company, A Man Of No Importance (Speakeasy Stage); Bailengangaire (Súgán Theatre); Humble Boy, Hamlet, The Winter’s Tale (Publick Theatre); Auntie and Me (Merrimack Repertory); Precious Little, Buried Child, The Unexpected Man (Nora Theatre). TV and Film: Spotlight, Olive Kitteridge, Irrational Man. Elliot Norton Awards Present Laughter, Brendan, Bailegangaire

J. Tucker Smith* (Thomas Callaghan)
J. Tucker Smith is a graduate of Northwestern University New York Credits include CLOSER (standby) on Broadway. Manhattan Theatre Club, One Dream Theatre. Regional work;  DINNER WITH FRIENDS at Alliance in Atlanta, ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA, Chicago Shakespeare, also in Chicago, Royal George Theatre, St. Nicholas. BLACKBIRD at Theatre Works Hartford ( Connecticut critics circle award). Television; DAREDEVIL, DAMAGES, (recurring), WHITE COLLAR, THE FOLLOWING, THIRD WATCH and a bunch of LAW AND ORDERS, (and lots of Soap operas in the 80’s) Film; THIRTEEN DAYS, SHAFT, HI LIFE, THE FORGOTTEN, SOLIDARITY and three soon to be released; ADDICTED, SENDER and THE COOLEST GIRL IN THE WORLD. Born and raised in Providence, Tucker is thrilled to be almost home in Gloucester where his dad set lobster pots many years ago.

Jim Frangione (Playwright)
Jim Frangione is pleased to return to GSC where Flight of the Monarch was presented last September as part of the NeverDark Series. The play has also had developmental workshops at Berkshire Playwrights Lab and at Shakespeare & Company in Lenox, MA, all directed by GSC’s own Jeff Zinn. Jim has acted for over 30 years in New York and across the country, performing in the original Off Broadway production and the Alley Theatre & National Tour productions of Mamet’s Oleanna. With the Atlantic Theater Company, Jim performed in Romance, Ghost Stories, The Night Heron, Hobson’s Choice, Hellhound On My Trail, Edmond and on Broadway in The Old Neighborhood; with regional theater companies: Humana Festival, The Delling Shore; Berkshire Theatre Festival, American Buffalo; Long Wharf, The Front Page, Mark Taper Forum, Romance. Films: Joy, Transamerica, Spartan, Heist, State and Main, The Spanish Prisoner, Homicide, Suits, Claire Dolan and Maryam. He is Co-artistic director of the Berkshire Playwrights Lab in Great Barrington, MA. He would like to thank his wife, Anne O’Dwyer, for her support and invaluable counsel around the psychological issues in the play.

Jeff_Zinn_220x220Jeff Zinn (Director)
GSC Managing Director and Flight of the Monarch director Jeff Zinn has been acting, directing, teaching, and writing about theater for more than 30 years. He made his GSC directing debut in 2016 with The Totalitarians. Before coming to GSC he was best known as the longtime artistic director of Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater (WHAT) on Cape Cod where he produced almost 200 productions, many of which he directed. Under his leadership, WHAT became a nationally recognized regional theater presenting provocative new American plays for a diverse and appreciative audience. As an actor, he made his equity debut as Danny in the original off-Broadway production of David Mamet’s Sexual Perversity In Chicago, and appeared on Broadway with Derek Jacobi in The Suicide. He is also a prolific audiobook producer and narrator. His narration of the unabridged A People’s History of the United States, written by his father, Howard Zinn, has sold more than 10,000 copies. As a director, he developed new plays at Ensemble Studio Theatre, The White Barn Theatre, The West Bank Cafe, Theater for the New City, the Berkshire Playwright’s Lab, New Jersey Repertory Company, and as a member of the Circle Repertory Company Lab. Locally he has directed for Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, the Nora Theatre and the New Repertory Theatre. His book, The Existential Actor: Life and Death, Onstage and Off (Smith and Kraus Publishing) was released in 2015. He enjoys his commute from beautiful Merrimac, MA, where he lives with his beautiful wife, Crystal.

Cristina Todesco† (Set Design)
Cristina is pleased to be back at GSC after designing last season’s The Totalitarians. Theater companies include Actor’s Shakespeare Project, Company One, ART Institute, Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, Huntington Theatre, Boston Playwrights, Merrimack Repertory Theater, New Repertory Theater, Olney Theater Center, Orfeo Group, Poet’s Theater, Speakeasy Stage Company, Stoneham Theater, Harbor Stage, Trinity Repertory, Wheelock Family Theater, Williamstown Theater Festival, Summer Play Festival. She has also designed for the Boston Symphony Orchestra both in Boston and at Tanglewood. For Outstanding Design, she is the recipient of four Eliot Norton Awards: The Clean House (New Rep), Twelfth Night (ASP), The Aliens and The Flick (Company One) and an IRNE Award: appropriate(Speakeasy). She earned a BFA in painting from BU’s School of Visual Arts, and an MFA in scenic design from BU’s School of Theatre Arts, where she currently teaches.

Jenna Worden (Properties Design)
Jenna Worden is delighted to return for her third season with Gloucester Stage. Favorite GSC credits include Out of Sterno, The Flick, and The Totalitarians. In addition, Jenna has worked with Commonwealth Shakespeare Company (Our American Hamlet), WGBH (A Christmas Celtic Sojourn), Childsplay AZ, and Phoenix Theatre. She recently signed on as Programs Coordinator of Brighter Boston, a non-profit partnership providing teenagers with professional internships in technical theatre and event production. Jenna earned both her BA in Theatre Studies and BSEd in History from Northern Arizona University.

John Malinowski (Lighting Design) returns to GSC having previously designed lighting for The Totalitarians, Driving Miss Daisy, This Is Our Youth, Trad, Last Day, and set and lighting for Nine Circles. Recent credits include Golda’s Balcony (New Repertory Theatre), Journey to the West (Central Square Theater), Oceanside (Merrimack Repertory Theatre), Arcadia (Central Square Theatre), Wild Party and Barnum (Moonbox Productions), Miss Julie, Glenngarry Glen Ross, and Persona (Harbor Stage Company), and the New York premiere of Simon Says at the Lynn Redgrave Theater. He lit Jeff Zinn’s productions of The Pillowman, Daughter of Venus, Fool for Love, and the Norton Award winning Bakersfield Mist in Wellfleet. He has designed for American Repertory Theater, Actors’ Shakespeare Project, Nora Theater, Wheelock Family Theater, SpeakEasy Stage, as well as American Stage Theater Festival in Tampa, FL and Tennessee Rep in Nashville, TN. He has received 3 IRNE awards as well as an Elliot Norton for Outstanding Lighting (1996). He was an NEA/TCG Design Fellow from 2000-2002.

Miranda Kau Giurleo (Costume Design)
Miranda Kau Giurleo gladly returns to Gloucester Stage where she designed last season’s Lettice and Lovage, and Totalitarians. Previous GSC credits include: The New Electric Ballroom, Fighting Over Beverly, Dear Liar, The Wind in the Willows, Ponies, Calvin Berger, Our Son’s Wedding, The Secret of Mme. Bonnard’s Bath, and The Heidi Chronicles. Other design credits include: The Scottsboro Boys (SpeakEasy Stage Company), Chill (Merrimack Repertory Theatre), The Convert, and Roots of Liberty (Underground Railway Theatre), Matchless/The Happy Prince (Central Square Theatre), Peerless, Leftovers, Dry Land, Shockheaded Peter, Grimm, Love Person, Neighbors, She Kills Monsters, The Good Negro, and After the Quake (Company One), Measure for Measure, As You Like It, and Two Gentlemen of Verona (Actor’s Shakespeare Project), and Closer Than Ever (New Repertoire Theatre).

She has previously designed and built costumes for the U.S.S. Constitution Museum production of Sailor’s Lives, Sailor’s Wives, and is currently on the faculty at Bridgewater State University.

Dewey Dellay (Sound Design)
Dewey Dellay returns to Gloucester Stage after designing for Lettice and Lovage, 9 Circles, Trying, Going to St. Ives, Doubt, Happy Days, and Dinner with Friends. Other credits include Duet (Greenwich Street Theatre, Off Broadway); and The Countess (Criterion, London’s West End). Regional credits include Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf (Lyric Stage Company); Photograph 51 (IRNE nomination Best Sound Design, Nora Theatre Company); When January Feels Like Summer (Underground Railway Theater); and Fully Committed (IRNE nomination Best Sound Design, Lyric Stage Company). He received an Elliot Norton award for Outstanding Design for his music and design on The Women (SpeakEasy Stage Company), 9 Parts of Desire and Miss Witherspoon (Lyric Stage Company), an IRNE for Best Sound Design on Five by Tenn (SpeakEasy Stage Company), and was nominated for an IRNE for History Boys (SpeakEasy Stage Company), The Mystery of Irma Vep (Lyric Stage Company), and St. Joan (Wheelock Family). Television credits include original music for Emmy nominated National Geographic’s China’s Mystery Mummies, Discovery Channel’s Miami Jail, and five seasons of the show Our America with Lisa Ling for the OWN Channel. He presently is contributing music to This is Life with Lisa Ling on CNN.

Marsha Smith* (Stage Manager)
GSC: Songs for a New World, Man in Snow, Fences, Jacques Brel…, This is Our Youth, Spring Awakening, Round and Round the Garden, Fighting Over Beverly, Living Together, An Ideal Husband,Tender, Sins of the Mother, Last of the Red Hot Lovers, Doubt, Widow’s Blind Date, Ponies, The Price.

Regional: School for Scandal, Midsummer Night’s Dream, Actors’ Shakespeare Project; Big Fish, Violet SpeakEasy Stage Co; On The Town, Lyric Stage Company; Reconcidering Hana(h), Franklin, Burning, The Company We Keep, The Farm, 5 Down 1 Across, Little Black Dress, Boston Playwrights’ Theatre; 9 Circles, Entertaining Mr Sloane, The Publick Theatre; Einstien’s Dreams, Underground Railway Theatre.

Education: BFA in Stage Management Emerson College. Marsha Lives on her family’s farm in Hudson NH and is glad to be back at GSC.

BWW Review: World Premiere of FLIGHT OF THE MONARCH at Gloucester Stage Company

Flight of the Monarch achieves a fine balance of comedy and drama, both of which arise naturally from the situation at hand. Frangione’s dialogue echoes real conversations, and his characters behave in realistic ways. The performances of Carroll and Smith elevate the work so that the audience can readily suspend disbelief and become absorbed into the world of the play.”
Broadway World

Theater Review: “Flight of the Monarch” — Grand Local Color

“Frangione’s skill with dialogue is on full display in Flight of the Monarch. His lively, realistic talk makes the story seem affectionately familiar — like your favorite old sweater. It might be a little clumpy, there might be a hole here and there but, all things considered, you’d rather wear it than just about anything. His multi-layered characters – not just Sheila and Thomas, but also their mother, their sister, Sheila’s daughter Mia, and even their long-lost father, have enormous complexity and vitality.”
The ArtsFuse

REVIEW: ‘Flight of the Monarch’ makes world premiere at Gloucester Stage

“Two fine performers, Nancy E. Carroll as Sheila and J. Tucker Smith as her brother Thomas, interact expertly thanks to fine direction by Jeff Zinn and convincing dialog by Frangione.”
Wicked Local


Flight of the Monarch is a poignant and astonishing family drama that aims for the heart and doesn’t miss.”
Good Morning Gloucester

The Tale of Two Siblings

An article about the cast, playwright, and director of Flight of the Monarch.
Gloucester Daily Times

Photo Flash: Sneak Peek at FLIGHT OF THE MONARCH, Premiering This Week at Gloucester Stage

Rehearsal photos and information on Flight of the Monarch.
Broadway World

* Member of Actors’ Equity Association (AEA)
** Member of Stage Directors & Choreographers Society (SDC)

Performances are Wednesday through Saturday at 7:30pm with matinees Saturday and Sunday at 2:00pm. In the final week of the run there will be an additional Tuesday evening performance at 7:30pm.

The Memory of Water
Written by Shelagh Stephenson, directed by Jennie Israel
Tuesday, September 12, 7:30pm | FREE no reservation required