Theatre

Before Regina discovered Storytelling, she worked as an actor, principally in theatre.
She has recently returned to the theatrical stage, and is delighted to be storytelling and acting….
Two distinct performance arts, two of her great loves.

Some theatrical history

When studying acting at The Pittsburgh Playhouse as a teenager, while others in the class were given age appropriate roles to perform for the class showcase., Regina was handed Clytemnestra.
She has been playing character roles ever since.

Regina as Jane, the Irish maid on Broadway
at the 46th St. Theatre in the all-star revival
of Clair Booth Luce’s The Women in 1973.
(with Jane Rose as the Cook)

Regina Ress as Abby Brewster
Arsenic and Old Lace
with Cheryl Chalmers
Highlands Playhouse 2009


Regina received her Actor’s Equity card during a summer season of musicals at the White Barn Theatre near Pittsburgh, PA, upon graduation from Carnegie Tech (now Carnegie Mellon University). She played Clara Weiss, the Molly Picon role, in the Jerry Herman musical
Milk and Honey.

After  completing a Masters in Theatre at Villanova University, where she studied acting with Irene Baird, she headed for NY.Her first New York appearance was as “Tails” in Lynn Meadow’s production of  UBU ROI, starring Henry Winkler as Pa Ubu, at St. Clements. Shortly after this, she appeared in Elegy to a Down Queen, one of John Vaccaro’s Play-House of the Ridiculous productions at LaMama Etc.  Of course, she was covered in glitter (a Vaccaro trademark) and for years found glitter in the corners of her west Village apartment.

Contrasting Off-Off Broadway roles were as Smeraldina in the Equity Library Theatre’s production of Goldoni’s Servant of Two Masters and as a Japanese waitress in Soon, Jack, November, an early production  at the Manhattan Theatre Club.

After a summer COST circuit tour with Patrice Munsel and Ron Holgate in Do I Hear a Waltz, where she played an Italian maid  and sang a solo, “Non Capisco,”  Regina was given another “maid” role, this time in the all-star Broadway revival of  Clare Booth Luce’s The Women. (which starred, among others, Kim Hunter, Merna Loy, and Alexis Smith.) at the 46th Street Theatre (now the Richard Rogers). As the Irish maid, Jane, Regina shared a hilarious scene with actress Jane Rose, wherein she reported on the doings “upstairs” and Rose, as the cook, wryly commented.

Soon Regina found herself touring with the indefatigable Mickey Rooney in a brilliant farce, See How They Run.  Another maid role….this time Cockney. This was a great romp.

While on tour with Rooney, Regina re-connected with her friend, producer-director Michael Hall. He invited her to play Agnes in the musical I Do, I Do at a summer theatre in Highlands, NC.  This led to a long collaboration at both The Highlands Playhouse and at a theatre Hall founded in Boca Raton,  FL, The Caldwell Theatre Company.  Regina had the joy of playing roles such as Nellie Forbush in Rogers and Hammerstein’s South Pacific, Maxine Faulk in Tennessee William’s Night of the Iguana, Prossie in Shaw’s Candida, Mdme Acarti in Noel Coward’s Blythe Spirit, and Thea Elvsted in Ibsen’s Heddah Gabler.

Regina then took some time out of her performing life to help create a farm on the south slopes of  Hawaii’s Mauna Loa volcano…and to have a baby. This is a whole OTHER story. But having a child led her to discover a new world of performance, storytelling.
For the past 20+ years,  storytelling has been her main focus.

In 2009, Regina was invited to return to the Highlands Playhouse to play Abby Brewster in Arsenic and Old Lace.  And in 2010, again at The Highlands Playhouse, Regina played Lettice Douffet, the Maggie Smith tour-de-force role in Peter Shaffer’s Lettice and Lovage. “It is known as the “Staircase of Wound and Woe.”

 

Complete Theatre Résumé