Artist Bios

The Norwegians

by C. Denby Swanson 

(in order of appearance)

Luverne Seifert (Tor). Photo: Melissa Hesse. Design: Kevin Cannon.
Luverne Seifert* (Tor): Dark & Stormy Productions: Debut. Theater: New Victory (Off Broadway); Berkeley Rep; South Coast Rep; La Jolla Playhouse; Arizona Rep; Trinity Rep; The Wilma; Guthrie Theater: Servant of Two Masters, The 39 Steps, The Government Inspector, The Ugly One; Ten Thousand Things: The Music Man, My Fair Lady, Othello, Richard III, Little Shop of Horrors, Changelings, King Lear, others; Children's Theatre Company: The Last Firefly, Marsupial Girl, The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, others; Sod House Theater (co-founder): Cherry Orchard, The Visit, Hoopla Train, others; Theatre de la Jeune Lune: artistic associate 1994-99, Hamlet, The Golem, Twelfth Night, Hunchback of Notre Dame, Yang Zen Froggs, Don Juan Giovanni, many others; Workhaus Collective: 800 Words, others; Frank Theatre: The Pillowman, Machinal, Sincerity Forever, Macbeth; Open Eye Figure Theatre: The Holiday Pageant. Teaching: University of Minnesota: Senior Teaching Specialist. Awards: McKnight Fellowship 2003; City Pages Artist of the Year 2008; Ivey Award 2009.

Jane Froiland (Olive). Photo: Melissa Hesse. Design: Kevin Cannon.
Jane Froiland (Olive): Dark & Stormy Productions: Debut. Theater: Children's Theatre Comany: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea; Jungle Theater: Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?; Ten Thousand Things: Doubt; Park Square Theatre: The Realistic Joneses; Of Mice and Men; To Kill a Mockingbird; Rock n Roll; Mixed Blood Theatre: An Octoroon; Gremlin Theatre: Rocket to the Moon; Walking Shadow Theatre Company: Compleat Female Stage Beauty; Old Log Theater: Jeeves in Bloom; Workhaus Collective: Skin Deep Sea; many others. Film/TV:Documentary Now!" (IFC Network; with Fred Armisen, Seth Meyers, writer); "Theater People" (web series, season 1). Awards: Best Actress in a Drama, Rocket to the Moon, Lavender Magazine, 2014.

James Rodriguez (Gus). Photo: Melissa Hesse. Design: Kevin Cannon.
James Rodriguez (Gus): Dark & Stormy Productions: Extremities. Theater: Children's Theatre Company: Peter Pan; Ten Thousand Things: Pericles; Theatre Latte Da: Cabaret, Evita; Park Square Theatre: Of Mice and Men, Ragtime; Mixed Blood Theatre: The Pajama Game; Yellow Tree Theatre: The Rainmaker; Frank Theatre: Three Penny Opera, Cabaret; Workhaus Collective: The Mill; Girl Friday Productions: Camino Real; Theatre Pro Rata: The Woodsman, Waiting for Godot; Pillsbury House Theatre, and others. Film/TV: "Theater People" (web series, season 2).
Sara Marsh (Betty). Photo: Melissa Hesse. Design: Kevin Cannon.
Sara Marsh* (Betty): Dark & Stormy Productions: And So It Goes, Sunshine, Extremities, The Hothouse, The Drunken City, The Receptionist, Speed-the-Plow, Outside Providence. Theater: The Playwrights’ Center; Park Square Theater; History Theatre; Pillsbury House Theater; Old Log Theater; Jungle Theater; Gremlin Theater; Thirst Theater; Day in, Day Out Productions; Theatre L’Homme Dieu; Mainly Me Productions; Alchemy Theater; others. Film/TV: Sugar & Spice (New Line Cinema; Wendy Finerman and Greg Mooradian, producers; with Melissa George, James Marsden, Mena Suvari); The Public Domain (Ten Ten Films & Farnam Street Ltd III; Patrick Coyle, writer/director); Best Man Down (Magnolia Pictures; with Justin Long, Frances O’Connor, Shelley Long); How to Kill a Mockingbird; “Theater People” (web series, seasons 1 & 4); many others; currently starring in Hallmark's Love Always, Santa. Voiceover: thousands of local and national spots for radio, TV, industrials, and web. Upcoming: the one-woman show Bad Dates by Theresa Rebeck at Artistry. Visit her at


Joel Sass (Director): Dark & Stormy Productions: Debut. Theater: Guthrie Theater: Pericles; 9 Parts of Desire; The 39 Steps; Vanya, Sonya, Masha and Spike; Oregon Shakespeare Festival: The Heart of Robin Hood; California Shakespeare Theater: Macbeth; Titus Andronicus; Pericles; Arizona Theatre Company: The 39 Steps; Jungle Theater: over 15 productions, including Venus in Fur, The Seafarer, I am My Own Wife, The Syringa Tree, Shining City, Hedwig & the Angry Inch; Park Square Theatre: The Realistic Joneses, Noises Off, Dirty Blonde, The Mystery of Irma Vep, Triumph of Love, others; Mixed Blood Theatre; History Theater; Pillsbury House; Interact Theater; Theatre de la Jeune Lune; and others. Co-Founder & Artistic Director of Mary Worth Theatre Company (Best Theater -- 2003). Awards: McKnight Fellowship; TCG's Alan Schneider Directing Award; two IVEY awards; City Pages Best Director (2002 & 2008) and Best Designer (2009 & 2013). Visit him at

C. Denby Swanson (Playwright) is an affiliated writer at The Playwrights' Center, and a graduate of Smith College, the Michener Center for Writers at UT-Austin, and the National Theater Institute. She has been a Jerome Fellow, McKnight Advancement Grant recipient, and William Inge Playwright in Residence. Her work has been developed in workshops across the country at the Lark Playwrights Festival, NYS&F, JAW & Portland Center Stage, the Earth Matters on Stage Festival, and others. She was part of the NEA/TCG National Theater Residency Program for Playwrights. Her work is published by Smith & Kraus, Dramatists, and

Frances Wilkinson (Producer, The Mount Curve Company) is a Minneapolis and New York based theater producer. Ms. Wilkinson formed The Mount Curve Company in 2008 to invest in theatrical work, including The Kushner Celebration, Edgardo Mine, God of Carnage, My Fair Lady (Guthrie Theater), In Darfur, Why Torture is Wrong (The Public Theater), Passing Strange (Broadway), Five Fingers of Funk (Children's Theatre Company), Detroit (Steppenwolf Theater Company), Hair (London's West End). In addition, she was an underwriter for the TPT documentary Slavery by Another Name, that aired on PBS in 2013 and The Public Theater/Royal Shakespeare Company's production of Antony and Cleopatra in 2014. She has produced Tarell McCraney’s award winning trilogy, The Brother Sister Plays at the Guthrie Theater from 2011-14, and she was a presenter for Gideon Irving’s new home show, Living Here, in collaboration with the Foundry Theater in New York, in April 2015. In 2016, Ms. Wilkinson invested in Waitress and Les Liaisons Dangereuses on Broadway. Ms. Wilkinson has served on the Boards of Directors of The Guthrie Theater, Theatre de la Jeune Lune, Independent Feature Project, and WATCH. She currently serves on The Walker Art Center’s Producing Council for Performing Arts, The Film Society of MSP, and is a Trustee of The Public Theater in New York. Ms. Wilkinson is delighted to have been part of the producing team for Extremities, And So It Goes, and the current production of The Norwegians for Dark & Stormy Productions.

Jennifer Melin Miller (Associate Producer, North Star Theatricals) is a producer, supporter and investor in nonprofit and commercial theater including the current Broadway productions of Waitress, The Front Page, Come From Away (opening March 2017) and Hello Dolly! (opening April 2017), and the U.S. tour of the Tony Award-winning play The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Jennifer proudly serves on the Board of Directors of the Guthrie Theater and on the Theater Communication Group's National Council for the American Theatre, and is the managing member of the Stone Arch Theatricals partnership. Jennifer is also a director on the nonprofit boards of AchieveMpls, Mission Animal Hospital, the Temple Israel Foundation, and Mainspring Arts Cooperative. Ms. Miller is thrilled to return to Dark & Stormy Productions on the producing team of The Norwegians after producing Extremities and And So It Goes.

Christopher Schout (Associate Producer, Triumph Productions) is the President of Triumph Productions and a partner in Stone Arch Theatricals. He is also an alumnus of the 2016 Commercial Theater Institute's Three Day Intensive Producers Seminar in Manhattan. He has a degree in Art History and completed the prestigious Shillington School Design Course in New York. Besides his passion for theater, he also enjoys playing the piano, oboe and singing, cooking and travel. Investments in theater and co-producer credits include: Broadway: Waitress, Scott Rudin's The Front Page and Hello, Dolly! with Stone Arch Theatricals; Minneapolis/St. Paul: The Shining (MN Opera), a world premier opera by composer Paul Moravec and liberettist Mark Campbell; Guthrie Theater: My Fair Lady, The Parchman Hour; 7th House Theater: The Great Work; Dark & Stormy Productions: The Norwegians. Christopher is co-producer of the upcoming new musical The Passage or What Comes of Searching in the Dark with 7th House Theater, of which he is a board member. Thanks to Wayne Zink, Jennifer Melin Miller, and Frances Wilkinson.

Jared Zeigler* (Production Stage Manager): Dark & Stormy Productions: And So It Goes, Sunshine, Extremities. Theater: Zeigler has stage managed with companies across the Twin Cities, including: Theatre Novi Most at the Southern Theater; The Guthrie Theater (Dowling Studio, Guthrie Theater/BFA Program); The Moving Company; Sod House Theater; Workhaus Collective at the Illusion Theater; and The Playwrights' Center, among others. He has served as a director for the Friction Collective, and as a director and co-founder of HOMOHOTDISH. Zeigler graduated from the University of Minnesota. Proud Equity member.

Mary Shabatura (Lighting Designer): Dark & Stormy Productions: And So It Goes, Sunshine, Extremities, The Hothouse, The Drunken City, The Receptionist, Speed-the-Plow, Outside Providence. Theater: Shabatura has also designed lights for Theatre Latte Da, The Moving Company, The Guthrie/BFA Program, and Interact, and has worked with such companies as The Santa Fe Opera, Cincinnati Opera, Penumbra Theatre, and 7th House Theater, among others, and has served as assistant lighting designer at The Guthrie Theater. Shabatura graduated with a double-major in Technical Theater and Political Science from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, in 2014. Visit her at

A. Emily Heaney (Costume Designer): Dark & Stormy Productions: Debut. Theater: Park Square Theater: A Raisin in the Sun, Stick Fly, The Red Box, Laughter on the 23rd Floor, The Language Archive, Words By...Ira Gershwin; Frank Theatre: The New Electric Ballroom; Casting Spells Productions: Disenchanted!; Gremlin Theatre: A Behanding in Spokane, Rocket to the Moon, Uncle Vanya, Burn This; Walking Shadow Theatre Company: Eurydice; Theatre Coup D'Etat: The Crucible; Lakeshore Players: The Happy Elf; Shakespeare & Co, MN: Taming of the Shrew, The Learned Ladies, The Miser. 

Aaron Newman (Sound Designer): Dark & Stormy Productions: And So It Goes. Theater: Newman has worked as a sound designer and technician for many companies across the Twin Cities, including Penumbra Theatre Company, The Guthrie/BFA Program, Park Square Theatre, Yellow Tree Theatre, and the MN Fringe Festival, among others. Newman is a graduate of the University of Minnesota.

*Member, Actors' Equity Association
Member, Stage Directors' and Choreographers' Society