Meet the Cast of "Red Riding Hood"

Tania Thompson
 | Mar 24, 2021
Red Riding Hood

Larry BatesLarry Bates

My main character in Red Riding Hood is Wolfgang, the storyteller. Most importantly, I am the wolf!

My previous SCR shows include Charlotte’s Web (I played Wilbur), The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales, Tales of a 4th Grade Nothing, The BFG (Big Friendly Giant), Sideways Stories from Wayside School (I played Mrs. Gorf) OZ 2.5 (I played the Lion) and The Only Child (I played Toby, better known as Power Boy, and my absolute favorite character!).

My other credits include “NYPD Blue,” “The Unit,” “Huff,” “Dark Blue, “Numb3rs,” “Boston Public” and “Sabrina, the Teenage Witch.”

What I like most about being in young audiences shows is that they can be wacky and off the wall and I looooooove wacky and off the wall. Randomly bursting into song or breaking the fourth wall, brings me so much joy. They are just plain old fun.

Young audiences shows are important because young people are the future of theatre. These shows are accessible, fun, and imaginative. I can honestly say that I would not be an actor if not for similar programs when I was little. I remember seeing a production of Aladdin when I was in elementary school and it blew me away. It set my imagination on fire—and I remember wanting that feeling again and again and being mesmerized by its magic.

My favorite fairy tale when I was kid was “The Three Little Pigs.” Simply because it is the greatest fairy tale ever told. As an adult, no question, it is John Glore's stage adaption of The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales.

The thing you should know about *this* Red Riding Hood is that it is fun. It is wacky and, if you have half of the fun that we are having, you will have a blast!

My favorite dessert is red velvet cake, in general. But, about two years ago, I went to Rome, Italy, and had some tiramisu, and I can honestly say it was the best dessert I ever had. Ever.

Nell GeisslingerNell Geisslinger

My main character in Red Riding Hood is the Delivery Person, who has a really big imagination. I think she drives around town in her delivery truck, and every package she drops off has her desperately wondering “What’s IN there!?!?” Luckily she meets someone who likes to daydream as much as she does, and that gives her a great excuse to stop working and get swept up in an afternoon of play. She’s definitely not a pushover—she has some strong opinions. And she probably likes alfalfa sprouts and granola with organic yogurt.

This is my SCR debut!

For my other credits, I’ve been lucky to play so many parts—princesses and paupers, a wicked stepsister, a shrew, and even a girl with a hump on her back—she had really high self-esteem, by the way. And there’s a lot I like to do besides acting. I wrote for a TV show called Food: Fact or Fiction?” And I make music for my friend’s online series “Junebug’s Corner,” all about the adventures of a fluffy wiener dog in the forest.

What I like most about being in young audiences shows is, well, I’m going to be really honest here. Sometimes when you go out on stage in front of adults, they’re leaned back in their seats, all quiet, their arms crossed, with this attitude of “show me what you got”. We actors can feel the audience’s energy—so if they’re skeptical, it’s kinda like pushing a boulder up a hill. With younger crowds, there’s usually a lot of activity in the audience before the lights go down. We can hear that offstage in the wings and it’s a good thing! It gets us juiced up for the show. Just like hearing laughter and responses to jokes and even gasps at serious or surprising moments (which adults are sometimes too cool to let loose). This show will be interesting because we’re filming it to stream for people to watch safely in their homes or classrooms, so we won’t have an audience. But Larry (who plays Wolfgang) and I are having a great time in the rehearsal room, so I know it’s going to be a blast.

Face it, adults have enough plays and movies and music and, and, and…. But here’s a secret: a good play is a good play. It doesn’t matter if someone says it’s “for young audiences”—it can and should be enjoyed by everyone. And THAT is this show!

My favorite story when I was kid was…well, this is hard, so can I pick three? Or four? ‘Cause I really liked “Half Magic” by Edward Eager, “The Worst Witch” series by Jill Murphy and “The Thorn Witch” by E.J. Taylor. Guess I have a thing for witches! But, if I HAD to pick a favorite, it’s definitely “Peter Pan” by J.M. Barrie. Because who doesn’t want to fly??

The thing you should know about *this* Red Riding Hood is that—and this is true of any play—while you’ll only see me and Larry onstage, there’s a whole team working behind the scenes. Allison Gregory (the brilliant playwright), Shannon Flynn (our most excellent director), and Kathryn Davies (trusty stage manager), just to name a few. One of the joys of being in theatre is this “family” of people that brings the show to life. And I think that’s what the characters in Red Riding Hood discover in each other by the end of the play.

My favorite dessert is…Oh man, I can’t choose just one favorite! I just can’t. Crème brulee, mint chocolate chip ice cream, Denver chocolate pudding, Nigella Lawson’s chocolate gingerbread…and, of course, CAKE!!

Learn more about Red Riding Hood and purchase tickets to watch the digital stream of this play.