In The Crusade of Connor Stephens, extreme loss shakes a Texas family as it comes to terms with a tragic act of violence. In the midst of widespread media attention, their story becomes an allegory for the national debate over religion, tolerance and the seedlings of hate. With humor and resilience, they will confront the ghosts of the past and discover the brutal universal truths that define the American family in the 21st century. The show is written an directed by Dewey Moss, writer of the award-winning Death of the Persian Prince.
The cast of The Crusade of Connor Stephens will feature James Kiberd (All My Children, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, The Taming of the Shrew), Ben Curtis (Take Me Out, Buried Child), Kathryn Leask (The Exonerated, The Right Kind of People) and Julie Campbell (Beautiful Thing, King Lear). Additional casting will be announced at a later date.
The Crusade of Connor Stephens made its world premiere at the 2017 Midtown International Theater Festival to sold out audiences and critical acclaim. It won 7 MITF awards, including: Best Overall Production, Best Play, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Supporting Actress. It was nominated for 11 total awards, including an additional nomination for Best Supporting Actor, Best Lighting Design, and Best Sound Design.
Dewey Moss (Writer/Director)
Dewey Moss is an award-winning director, writer, and actor whose performance career has spanned Broadway shows, concert appearances, film/TV work, and opera. As a writer and director, his debut feature film A Normal Life won critical acclaim in film festivals worldwide and is currently in distribution. His screenplay All the Way from Arp, Texas is currently in pre-production. One of his newest works, Death of the Persian Prince, a play about Iranian gay men forced to have sex changes to avoid execution, made its world premiere at the 2015 Midtown International Theater Festival and won Best Play at the 2015 South Asian International Performing Arts Festival and enjoyed a successful subsequent Off-Off Broadway run at the DMAC-Duo Multicultural Performing Arts Center. His play The Crusade of Connor Stephens is currently in pre-production for an Off-Broadway run. In addition, he recently made his Carnegie Hall debut as both singer and director when he performed the opera Puppet by Christian McLeer (a solo piece written specifically for Dewey), and directed the world premiere of William Bolcom’s Barnyard Boogaloo. As a Creative Director for several major advertising firms, Dewey has written and produced/directed countless commercials, industrials, and webisodes, many of which have been Telly Award-winning. Dewey is a graduate of the Commercial Theater Institute's (CTI) program. Originally from Fort Worth, Texas, Dewey also teaches acting and voice through his private New York City studio, DMoss Studios, and is author of the acting handbook Learning the Art of Imperfection.
Lisa Dozier King (General Manager)
Lisa has general managed more than fifty professional productions as well as hundreds of special events in New York City. Current/Recent Off Broadway: Bedbugs the Musical, Moses Man, Manuel vs. The Statue of Liberty, Napoleon, Breakfast with Mugabe, Final Analysis, F#%king Up Everything, Sistas the Musical. Off Broadway: Bronte: A Portrait of Charlotte, Ten Chimneys, The Duchess of Malfi (Red Bull Theater), How to be a Good Italian Daughter (Cherry Lane). Other favorite projects: Leave the Balcony Open (3LD), Milk (New Georges, HERE Arts Center), The Diary of a Teenage Girl (3LD), Into the Hazard (Henry 5) (Walkerspace), Stormy Weather (Pasadena Playhouse: asst. director), The Rise and Fall of Annie Hall (Theatre Row/Stage 13), To Paint the Earth (NYMF), I Come For Love (NYMF), SA KA LA (45 Bleecker/ Oslo Elsewhere), Jeffrey Hatcher’s Murderers (Emelin), The Piper (NYMF), Surface to Air (Symphony Space), The Polish Play (Walkerspace), Behind the Limelight (NYMF), Jeff Daniels’ Apartment 3A , The Ballad of Bonnie and Clyde (NYMF). Previously, she was the associate producer at Symphony Space and on the artistic staff at Manhattan Theatre Club where she worked on such productions as Doubt and Reckless . She has also been on staff at the New 42nd Street, Symphony Space, American Repertory Theatre and New York Stage & Film. Lisa is the general manager for the National Alliance for Musical Theatre’s Festival of New Musicals. Lisa is also the director of the BFA theatre management program at the University of Miami.
Susan Steiger, Esq. (Attorney)
Susan currently provides legal representation for DMoss Productions, LLC. She has practiced entertainment law for over twenty five years. She began her legal career at Skadden Arps and moved from there to a small firm and is now in solo practice. Her clients come from the worlds of theatre, television, book and music publishing and film. She works on theatrical productions, literary rights agreements, screen and television writer agreements, as well as trademark and copyright counseling. Before her legal life, she worked on political campaigns and then at ABC News. She is on the Board of NY Women in Film and TV and is on the Board of the Irish Repertory Theatre. She has been an associate producer of several Broadway productions.
Red Rising Marketing
Red Rising Marketing Michael Redman is a leader in the theatrical marketing industry with over 18 years experience, including ten years where he served as Vice President of HHC Marketing. Michael is responsible for developing key advertising, marketing & promotional campaigns for hit Broadway and Off-Broadway productions. Michael also created marketing campaigns during his time at The Walton Group, under the leadership of Scott Walton. Michael came directly to The Walton Group from Columbia Artists Management/Theatricals Inc. where his management credits included the Broadway and/or National Touring productions of TAP DOGS, CHICAGO, STOMP, TRAINSPOTTING, THE GERSHWIN’S FASCINATING RHYTHM and Savion Glover’s FOOTNOTES. Prior to the launch of Red Rising Marketing, Michael worked with some of the Best Broadway and Off-Broadway shows, including CABARET, JERSEY BOYS, ELAINE STRITCH AT LIBERTY, CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF, JESS CHRIST SUPER STAR, MISS SAIGON, SPAMALOT and many others.
John Capo (Public Relations)
John has created more than 100 influential PR campaigns for clients in New York City’s theater, film and live event industries. His clients have exhibited their work at such venues as Symphony Space, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, BAM, Theatre Row, The Duke on 42nd Street and the New York Public Library for the Arts, and have won or been nominated for the Emmy, Grammy, Tony, Obie and Drama Desk Awards. He is a Producer and Media Relations Director for the New York City Drone Film Festival presented by NBC News, the world’s first film festival dedicated to works filmed by drones. He previously spent four years as the Director of Public Relations for The Snapple Center, Snapple’s 20,000-square-foot branded entertainment complex in Times Square. In 2013, Capo produced two critically-acclaimed Off-Broadway musicals: Bayside! The Musical!, the parody of TV’s Saved By The Bell, and Showgirls! The Musical!, the parody of the cult classic flop film Showgirls.
James Kiberd (Big Jim)
James is best known for creating ground breaking, socially relevant roles on Daytime Drama over15 years. (The troubled Vietnam Vet, Mike Donovan, on ABC’s Loving, the wild and woolly Mercenary turned Detective, Trevor Dillon, on All My Children.) Since leaving Daytime (2001) Kiberd has sought challenges on stage, and in independent film. Winning the “2004 Best Actor” Zoni Award for his Petruchio in Taming of the Shrew, Kiberd continues an active theatre career playing Shakespeare’s Killers, Kings and Klownes, while mixing in some of the most edgy of contemporary theatre. At the opposite pole from the mad cap lover, Petruchio, Kiberd played the Garbo obsessed “Walter,” who wants to die in the arms of his own “Armand” (a la “Camille”) in the AFI production Sunset Tuxedo in 2004. Then in 2005, the serial killer in Hunter Gatherer, the Slimy Texas Ranger in Jack. The title role in the play Manhattan Casanova and the Starring Role of Elliot In Soldier’s Heart, which had it’s World Premier at the Prestigious GI Film Festival in May of 2008 winning Best Narrative Film. Named a National Celebrity Ambassador for UNICEF USA.
Ben Curtis (Jim Jr.)
While best known for his work from the infamous Dell Computer commercials, Ben Curtis is an award-winning actor on both stage and screen, sharing the spotlight with actors such as June Squibb, Jay Leno, Will Ferrell and Richard Chamberlain. His favorite roles include “Shane Mungitt” (Take Me Out), “Vince” (Buried Child) and “Oscar Hubbard” (Another Part of the Forest). He most recently played opposite Laura Bell Bundy in the feature film Beauty Mark, coming Spring 2017. An advocate for human rights, Ben is thrilled to be part of this poignant play and talented cast.
Katherine Leask (Marianne)
Katherine has deep roots in Texas. The daughter of two Texas-born parents, she spent several formative years there and is a graduate of Southern Methodist University’s renowned Meadows School of the Arts. Katherine has performed everything from Shakespeare to Stoppard to Shaw (a particular favorite) at flagship theaters throughout the U.S., notably The Guthrie Theater (company member); Arena Stage, Old Globe Theatre, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Arizona Theatre Company and more. Off-Broadway credits include Charles Grodin’s hilariously brutal The Right Kind of People at Primary Stages, Bill W. and Dr. Bob, Jonathan Reynolds’ stinging Stonewall Jackson’s House, and the long-running hit The Exonerated, directed by Bob Balaban, also appearing in its National Tour and Edinburgh Festival productions, and opposite Brian Dennehy in the made-for- television version. More recently she appeared in The New Yorker Festival in Lawrence Wright’s Cleo, about the fateful meeting of Liz Taylor and Richard Burton on the set of Cleopatra; in Sex in a Coma at the HB Playwrights Theatre TURBULENCE Festival, and in Grave Robbers for HB’s Central Park Plays. She has indeed appeared on Law and Order, and is a member of Ensemble Studio Theatre.
Julie Campbell (Kimmy)
Julie is returning to the role of Kimmy, after playing her in the staged reading. NYC credits include Sandra in Beautiful Thing, Goneril in King Lear, and MacBeth in an all female production of the play. Film: YeYe Bells Shiver (NY International Short Film Festival Selection), Homecoming, Credence and two recent releases, Only the Lonely and Leftovers. Julie is a member of Actor’s Equity, SAG/AFTRA and holds an M.F.A. from The University of Washington Professional Actor Training Program. She is a company member and teaching artist at Midtown Direct Rep in residence at SOPAC in New Jersey. Julie is also a writer and proud mom of three.
Jacques Mitchell (Bobby)
Jacques is profoundly grateful to be working alongside Dewey Moss and this talented cast. Jacques is a Texas transplant, having resided and worked diligently in the NYC area for the past decade. Jacques’ recent stage credits include a Regional run of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof in Annapolis, MD, in which he played the title role, Brick. And Jacques continues to trod the boards with Juliana: a staged series of LGBT life during WWII at The Duplex (Vanda). He also engages in ongoing study with friend & director, Terry Schreiber at T. Schreiber Studio. Jacques’ most recent Indie film project, Harlemites: A series of intertwined shorts, written & directed by Michael Taylor Jackson, is currently making its way through the Festival circuit. You can also find Jacques’ short film, Tom in America, in the Festival circuit in which he plays opposite Burt Young & Sally Kirkland, directed by Flavio Alves.
The Crusade of Connor Stephens featured on BroadwayWorld.com. Read the article >>
Interview with writer/director Dewey Moss on ReviewFix.com. Read the article >>
“THE CRUSADE OF CONNOR STEPHENS could not be more relevant in the current climate of gun violence in the
United States and in the face of the looming anti-LGBTQ platform. Mr. Moss has created one of the most despicable characters in recent memory. Big Jim’s deep-seated homophobia and his abusive behavior toward his wife and mother is only superseded by his enormous ego. James Kiberd successfully captures Big Jim’s character and brings a level of honesty and rich authenticity to his powerful performance.”
— David Roberts, Chief New York Critic, Theater Reviews LTD and OnStage
“Dewey Moss’s provocative family drama, THE CRUSADE OF CONNOR STEPHENS, eschews easy answers and ripped-from-the-headlines relevance in favor of a more challenging exploration of clashing ideologies. Moss treats all perspectives with equal compassion, and shows that both sides can sometimes be guilty of finger- pointing. CRUSADE should get a longer run in a theater the right size and shape. It deserves to.”
— Ethan Kanfer, New York Theater Reviews
“CONNOR STEPHENS deserves more eyes, particularly as the topic could not be more relevant during this troubled summer. Being so close to the players, close enough to see them twitch at one another’s words, brings that uncomfortable intimacy that might be lost in too large a house. Curtis’s Jim Jr. in particular, speaks very little but says so much with grimace and gesture that--for me, anyway--I felt like I knew him intimately and understood his pain. You wish you weren’t so close at times, right in the room hearing the things these people have been carrying around for so long, but we need to be there.”
— Christian Paolino, The Verge of Jordan