Summerfest 2015

CoHo Summerfest 2015

5 Shows  .  5 Weekends  .  $55 Festival Pass

 Innovative. Inspiring. Irreverent.

June 11 -July 12, 2015

June 11- 14

The Wildly Inappropriate Poetry of Arthur Greenleaf Holmes

 Lyrical. Lewd. Bawdy.  


Gordy Bourdreau. Credit Carr Hagerman Photography

An evening with the monstrously entertaining verse of fictional 19th century British libertine poet Arthur Greenleaf Holmes in a spirited celebration of the unscrupulous English language. This show is not for children, the dull-witted nor the morally indignant.


Production Credits:

Created and Performed by Gordon Boudreau

About the Artist:

Gordon Boudreau has made his living as an actor, writer, street performer, and comedian for the past twenty-five years. As a member of Theater In The Ground he appeared at outdoor festivals around the country presenting comedic adaptations of such classics as Beowulf, Dante’s Inferno, and Gilgamesh—all performed in a pit of mud.  He lived in New York for ten years, performing standup comedy at The Comic Strip, Caroline’s Comedy Club, and other venues. He currently lives in Portland with his wife and children.

About the Show:

The Wildly Inappropriate Poetry Of Arthur Greenleaf Holmes began in central New York at the Sterling Renaissance Festival in 2007, when I was hired to play a 16th century walk-about poet in a village where Queen Elizabeth I was visiting on her progress. At first, I had no idea what I wanted to do, but I knew what I did not want to do: I did not want to be a purveyor of limericks, or a poet who wrote silly roses-are-red poems, nor did I want to read other people’s poems. The more I thought about it, the more I began to wonder what might happen if I really devoted myself to writing poetry. Funny poetry, perhaps, and maybe even inadvisable poetry.  But poetry first and foremost, with imagery, language and styles evoked by the poets that I had grown up hearing as the son of a liberal arts English professor who quoted Melville, Thoreau and Whitman.  What might that look like?

Since this wasn’t yet a stage show, I faced the challenge of asking passers-by if they wanted to hear a poem. And they did not. I couldn’t blame them; would I have stopped if an employee in pumpkin pants at a renaissance festival asked me if I wanted to hear his poetry?  I doubted it. Then one day, a phrase popped out of my mouth. I asked a group strolling by, “Excuse me, would you like to hear something wildly inappropriate?” To my astonishment, they stopped dead in their tracks, and from that moment on, I knew my course. What began as a street act eventually assembled itself into a stage show that I took to festivals in New York, Minnesota, Texas, and Florida.

This show has no director in the traditional sense. Like much of stand-up comedy, it has been directed by my audience, over several years of presenting this horrid material to them.  This is not to say that I owe no debt to those who guided this show. Chief among them is my good friend in Minneapolis, Carr Hagerman, Entertainment Director of the Minnesota Renaissance Festival, who encouraged me when my audiences were scant and my path was unclear. He gave me a stage show at the Minnesota Renaissance Festival, produced my first cd, and has been this show’s constant mentor. Jim Cunningham, also from the twin cities, deserves my thanks for his encouragement as well. So does Anna Sawyer, who designed my first costume. And, of course, Gary Izzo, Artistic Director of the Sterling Renaissance Festival, who first challenged me to play this poet character. In New York, my show has greatly benefited from the input of Barbara Geary, Michael Reilley, and the college professor most responsible for turning me on to John Keats and the romantic poets, Patrick J. Keane.  And to my father, Gordon V. Boudreau—well, you may feel chagrined to know that you had no small hand in this endeavor. Above all, I would like to thank my wife, Sara, who has crisscrossed the country countless times in order that I may pursue this thing that I love.  Her patience, wisdom, and emotional equilibrium have kept me from giving up on this long ago.  Thanks to all, now…would you like to hear something wildly inappropriate?

June 18- 21

Butt Kapinski    

Interactive. Shadowy. Silly. 


Butt Kapinski. Credit Marc J Chalifoux

No one said being a pwivate eye was pwetty…Butt Kapinski returns to Coho with this gender-confused film noir murder mystery. Join Butt in a seedy world of sex, sin, shadows and subterfuge as you play in a world of dark dreams and bad similes. An interactive comedic experience for grown-ups only.


Production Credits

Created and Performed by Deanna Fleysher

Additional Direction and Writing by Ember Knight, Brie Williams and Eric Davis

About the Artist:

Deanna Fleysher is a comedy artist, teacher and director. Inspired by clown, bouffon, improv and physical theater, she cultivates comedy that is interactive and brave. She currently tours with her award-winning solo show Butt Kapinski, and teaches workshops at comedy schools across North America—including a workshop in Portland on July 11th! She is also the director/co-writer of Red Bastard, the internationally-acclaimed bouffon show. She leads the ongoing Naked Comedy Lab in Los Angeles. For more info, visit, and please enjoy her blog at

About the Show:

Welcome! Tonight we celebrate you.

In the world of increasingly convenient at-home entertainment options, you have chosen to put on pants, leave your house, and enter the realm of live theatre. You are an adventurous and bold soul. And so, you deserve a live experience that will never happen quite this way again, and could not be the experience it is without your presence here tonight. You are cherished, you are loved, you are a crucial part of this equation. You have wonderful pants on… or skirt/toga/caftan/whathaveyou. You look just marvelous. You are marvelous.

Look around the theater at the other people here. Be subtle about it, now, don’t stare. Do they not seem marvelous as well? What are they doing? Some will be checking their phones, but they will turn off their phones and put them away before the show begins. Is that not a beautiful gesture? It is! Others will be chatting quietly, some may be reading this very program, but they will cease those activities soon, and is that not fabulous of them? This is a room full of pretty great people, chances are. And we have all come together for the same thing. It is a moment of rejoicing, this spontaneous community we have already created.

June 25-28


Wordless. Whimsical. Imaginative.


LOON. Credit Second Glance Photography.
LOON. Credit Second Glance Photography.       

Acclaimed physical theatre company and mask imagineers the WONDERHEADS bring you a most peculiar love story that whisks a man to the moon and back. Delighted audiences ages 10-110 describe the magnificent mix of puppetry, mime, soundscape and mask-work as “pure magic” and “like a live cartoon”  in this moving silent story.


Production Credits

Devised in Ensemble by WONDERHEADS
Directed by Andrew Phoenix
Mask Design by Kate Braidwood
Set Design by Andrew Phoenix
Sound Design by Kate Braidwood
Costume Assistance by Valerie Ditchfield
Featuring “Denmark” composed by Gideon Freudmann, played by Portland Cello Project

*LOON was originally developed in part through the support of PAC LAB, a program of Portland Actors Conservatory.
Special Thanks

Special thanks to Tony Fuemmeler, Matthew Kerrigan, Lou Watson, Philip Cuomo, Emily Windler and Brian Kuwabara, and our families for their continued love and support.

About the Artists:

WONDERHEADS is a multi award winning physical theatre company specializing
in mask performance and exquisite visual storytelling. Their work is performed in
full-face mask, a wordless form that mixes European larval mask traditions with
character mask styles, resulting in a whimsical, wordless craft rarely seen on
North American stages.

The Heads are Kate Braidwood and Andrew Phoenix, who came together in
2009 resolved to do their part in conjuring a little magic and wonder into the
world. Armed with their respective careers in the professional theatre, a shared
background in the most curious of MFA degrees (Ensemble Based Physical
Theatre, Dell’Arte International) and a mutual proclivity for all things bizarre and
extraordinary, they set out to create Grim and Fischer: a deathly comedy in full-
face mask. This, the story of a feisty grandmother who battles it out with the
Grim Reaper himself, has been busy touring the US and Canada and was the
recipient of five Best of Fest awards in 2011 and the League of Cincinnati
Theatres Award for Outstanding Production in 2012. Having explored death, the
Heads wanted to balance the scales and tackle Love, and in 2011 created their
second show: LOON, the story of a man who falls in love with the moon. LOON
was awarded three Best of Fest awards in 2012 as well as the 2012 Edmonton
Critics Choice Award, and three 2013 Orlando Critics’ Choice Awards (Best
Show, Best Original Work, Best Female Performance). In March of 2013 the
WONDERHEADS were selected as one of ten Scion Motivate finalists, a national
contest recognizing young entrepreneurs in the creative arts, and soon thereafter
used their prize (a sparkling new Scion xB) to propel them along their second
Canadian national tour of Grim and Fischer. In early 2014 the existing Heads
welcomed a new Head, Emily Windler, to the creative team and together they
created their newest show The Middle of Everywhere, a comedy-adventure
exploring what it means to live life it its fullest (and to travel through time and
space). The Middle of Everywhere premiered in Portland OR in June 2014 and then embarked on a cross-Canada summer tour during which it was awarded
Best of Fest in Saskatoon, SK as well as the Favorite Visual Theatre/Puppetry
Award in Victoria, BC. The WONDERHEADS are based in Portland, OR.

For more information about WONDERHEADS, please visit, and follow them on Facebook:

About the Show:
Back in 2009 when Andrew and I came together to create our first show, Grim and Fischer, we had no idea the journey we were about to embark on. We were two friends making a show in a tiny San Francisco living room, scheduling rehearsals between part time jobs and bumping into the walls with big masks on our heads. We made a show about death, and we also happened to fall in love. So while we toured Grim and Fischer and became the WONDERHEADS, we also became married. In 2011 we wanted to create another show together, and we thought it fitting that it be about Love – and that’s where LOON began. You could say that LOON turned out to be more of a melancholic look at Love than our own experience together, but oftentimes when we create, all kinds of things that we ourselves have dealt with in the past or are still processing sneak into the narrative. So as much as LOON is about love, it’s also very much about letting go. When we are faced with loss – the death of a loved one, the end of a relationship or a meaningful experience – the sense of loss can be overwhelming. But we can find solace in how that person or experience helped shape who we are, and how we keep them in our hearts as we move on. So we hope you enjoy LOON, this strange love story between a man and the moon.
–Kate Braidwood

 July 2- 5 (no show July 4) 

The Peasant’s Bible

Subversive. Carnal. Improvisational.           

Matthew Kerrigan, credit Gary Norman
Matthew Kerrigan, Credit Gary Norman

Dario Fo, Italy’s iconoclastic playwright-performer, forges incendiary wit and linguistic experimentation into provocative comedy. The Dissenter’s Handbook is a collection of Italian folklore filtered through Fo’s political jest, daringly staged by Portland theatre’s dynamic duo, Matthew Kerrigan and Samantha Van Der Merwe.

Production Credits:

Writing by Dario Fo

Performance by Matthew Kerrigan

Direction by Samantha Van Der Merwe

Lighting Design and Technical Direction by Ted Jonathan Gold

Sound Design by Ryan Mooney

Costume Design by Alanna Hylton

About the Artists:

Shaking the Tree Performance Group is an intrepid young theatre company that seeks to meld the boundaries of theatre and visual art by presenting audiences with thrilling and immersive theatrical experiences. Founded in 2003 by Samantha Van Der Merwe, Shaking the Tree uses innovative ways to inhabit space, creating a heightened surrounding that allows audiences to experience a deeper, more active connection to the work.

Since joining the Performance group in 2013, Matthew Kerrigan has performed in four Shaking the Tree productions: Wilde Tales (Oscar Wilde/Karin Magaldi), One Flea Spare (Naomi Wallace), Masque of the Red Death (Edgar Allan Poe), and Suddenly Last Summer (Tennessee Williams). Matthew’s magnetic presence and intuitive physicality on stage, make him a perfect collaborator and conduit for Samantha Van Der Merwe and Shaking the Tree’s unique approach to theatrical storytelling.

About the Show
Dario Fo’s storytelling is rooted in the physical. He is bawdy, subversive, yet deeply spiritual. He embraces all elements of the natural world, including our human/animal essence, and asks us to challenge the status quo. Because of this, he has been banned and blacklisted by the authorities of many countries, and that is why we love him! He creates his stories in the physical first, and then records them on paper, so for an actor like Matthew Kerrigan, who understands and translates the text in a physical way, this is a match made in heaven. We will present three of Fo’s stories: a naughty take on the creation myth of Genesis, a commedia style (Italian) Nativity story, and the tale of an injured soldier who is nursed back to life by an enormous tiger. We hope you enjoy watching them as much as we have enjoyed working on them.


 July 9-12

Drowned Horse Tavern

(A Sea Shanty Cabaret)

 Salty. Adventurous. Noisy.

Amber Whitehall, Christi Miles, Rebecca Lingafelter. Credit Owen Carey
Amber Whitehall, Christi Miles, Rebecca Lingafelter. Credit Owen Carey

Batten down the hatches and clutch your grog tight – in the Drowned Horse Tavern drunken sailors meet to tell tales of shipwreck and lurking leviathans, to sing songs of adventure and loneliness, to whisper of the unfathomable sea within. PETE will spin vaudeville, live music and visceral performance style into a raucous evening of salty cabaret as part of PETE’s The Journey Play Is The Whole Thing: A Constellation Of Art Events, Objects and Experience.

Production Credits:

Director: Jacob Coleman

Performers: Rebecca Lingafelter, Paige McKinney, Cristi Miles, Claire Thomforde-Garner,

Mark Valadez, Amber Whitehall,

Design: Jenny Ampersand, Miranda Hardy, Peter Ksander, Mark Valadez

Embedded Scholar: Robert Quillen Camp

Line Producer: Claire Thomforde-Garner

Stage Manager: Kristina Mast

About the Artists:

PETE is a company of artists who make new performance in a collaborative way.  We challenge established notions of performance with innovative forms of practice, presentation and organization. We do all this to achieve a radical kind of presence shared with our audience in the performance event. Inspired by a contemporary design aesthetic, inventive storytelling modes, and heightened emotional honesty, we create work that is visceral, raw and revealing.

Since its inception in 2011, PETE has produced work at Risk/Reward, On the Boards, Caldera, and PCS’s JAW Festival. Major works include: Enter THE NIGHT, with NYC director Alice Reagan (2015); the premiere of a new English translation of Chekhov’s The Three Sisters, with translator/director Stepan Simek (2014); drammy-award winning R3 (2013); and an original work, Song of the Dodo (2013).

About the Show:

PETE’s current project is The Journey Play Is The Whole Thing: a constellation of art objects, events and experience. The Journey Play project is 18 months of programming that engages audiences in a series of integrated works of art over 18 months and manifests in multiple locations: a theatrical journey. In January, 2016, PETE will produce [or, the whale], a play by Juli Crockett. In addition, we will present events and objects that arise from our examination of Crokett’s play and the novel behind it: Moby Dick. Like stars in a constellation, each performance will spin out from the same material. In All Well (a sightless play) (Oct’ 15), audiences will lie in hammocks, immersed in darkness and a story of shipwreck. We’ll share grog and sea-ballads in our salty cabaret Drowned Horse Tavern (Jul ’15). You will meet Ahab in a picture book, in an art gallery (Photo Book/Gallery Showing, Jun’16), and again along the highway when you board a bus for Journey Play (Oct-Nov’16). The audience’s relationship with each character, song, and idea will deepen and evolve with every encounter. Each event will exist as a whole, but together they will constitute something larger, a brand new way of experiencing performance through time.

Our full ensemble of associate artists and founding members will work together on each project, creating resonance between each individual performance and the constellation’s whole. The ensemble for The Journey Play Is The Whole Thing is Jacob Coleman, Rebecca Lingafelter, Cristi Miles, Amber Whitehall, Peter Ksander, Miranda K Hardy, Jenny Ampersand, Mark Valadez, Paige McKinney and Robert Quillen Camp.


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