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Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company - Defy convention

by Gregory S. Moss
directed by Sarah Benson

Featuring Company Members Mitchell Hébert and
Michael Russotto, with Randy Blair,
Kaaron Briscoe, James Flanagan, William Hayes,
Ben Kingsland, Andrew M. Lincoln,
and Emily Townley

November 1 – 28, 2010

Appropriate for ages 16 and up.

OverviewWho's whoSchedule and PricesAdditional Info

About the Show


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The suburbs are a dangerous place for a beautiful blonde. Fearless young playwright Gregory S. Moss conducts a darkly funny inquest on the fate of a certain six-year-old beauty queen. This funhouse ride into the American psyche conjures up the picture-perfect child…but can she ever be safe from the adults who created her?

What people are saying about
House of Gold:

"A sort of JonBenét passion play that's blacker than the cover of Spinal Tap's Smell the Glove album."
City Paper

"Unique, compelling, and attention-grabbing... Succeeds spectacularly at creating a unique experience in the theater that couldn?t be replicated in another medium."
We Love DC

“Is anyone else uncomfortable? Of course. Everyone is. And Woolly Mammoth saw it all coming a mile away. It’s clear that the company wants to foment the perverse allure of an absurdist comic riff on the 1996 murder of 6-year-old beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey. And if anyone’s going to take on this phantasmagorical farce it ought to be Woolly, a group that shines when they do the kind of plays that stimulate such deeply conflicted emotional reactions in their patrons. So, do they have a cult classic on their hands?”
DC Theatre Scene

House of Gold is the kind of play that ends and you think, “What the hell just happened?” But then two days go by and you find you can’t stop thinking about the piece.”
Two Hours Traffic

“Playwright Gregory S. Moss casts aspersions upon us, for being a public all too willing to permit a child to be sexualized at a young age in order to compete in the very adult pastime of judging beauty and bodies for sport.”
Maura Judkis

"A nightmarish & needed discussion about sexualization/ownership of girls & beauty”
Twitter follower

House of Gold is a modern theatrical disco party - upbeat, offbeat, funny, disturbing, and vibrant.”
Twitter follower

“One of the trippiest experiences I've had at a theater. Exciting, thought provoking and intensely energetic.”
Woolly Facebook Fan

“Badass, charged-up, Holy Sh*t Theatre.”
The Huffington Post


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Who's Who


kbriscoeGREGORY S. MOSS (Playwright) is a writer and performer from Newburyport MA.  He is a graduate of Brown University’s MFA Playwriting Program. His plays include sixsixsix; Garden; The Argument; and punkplay. His work has been developed or produced by The A.R.T., Red Eye, Playwrights Horizons, PlayPenn, Soho Rep and New York Theatre Workshop, among others. His collaborations with filmmaker Roger Beebe have been screened widely at film festivals in America and abroad. Gregory is the recipient of a 2006-2007 Lucille Lortel Playwriting Fellowship, a 2009 Eugene O’Neill Center National Playwrights Conference residency and a 2010-2011 Jerome Fellowship. punkplay, published in Play A Journal of Plays, was recently produced at The Steppenwolf Garage.  A new play, Orange, Hat & Grace, premiered at Soho Rep in September 2010 directed by Sarah Benson, and Billy Witch premieres at Northeastern University in October 2010. Writing, video and audio are archived at

SARAH BENSON (Director) has been the Artistic Director of Soho Rep since 2007. New York credits include Soho Rep: Gregory S. Moss’ Orange, Hat & Grace, Sarah Kane’s Blasted (OBIE award, Drama Desk nomination) and Manhattan Theater Club: Polly Stenham’s That Face. She has also worked on new plays at The O’Neill, New York Stage & Film and New Dramatists. Ms. Benson moved to New York from London on a Fulbright for Theater Direction. She co-curated the PRELUDE Festival at the Martin E. Segal Theatre Center for two seasons. At Soho Rep she has produced new works by artists including: Young Jean Lee, Dan LeFranc, Nature Theater of Oklahoma and John Jesurun. Upcoming: A.R.T. Boston: Sophocles’ Ajax and at Soho Rep Richard Maxwell’s Samara.





RANDY BLAIR (Jasper) is an actor, writer, and performance artist from New York City. His musical Fat Camp, which won Best of the Fest at the 2009 New York Musical Theatre Festival, recently received its pre-Broadway developmental workshop with Randy in the lead. He also created and starred in the award winning cult hit Perez Hilton Saves the Universe, which played Off-Broadway at 45 Bleeker, Barrow Street Theatre, and Joe's Pub. Other Off-Broadway: Adding Machine (dir. David Cromer), The Yellow Wood (dir. BD Wong), Behind the Limelight, and The Tragic and Horrible Life of the Singing Nun. Regional: premieres of Spelling Bee, Avenue Q, Side Show. Film/TV: Law & Order, Naked Brothers Band, Across the Universe, Strangers with Candy. His rock n roll theatrical terrorism has been seen all over downtown New York, from PS122 to the Upright Citizens Brigade to (insert Lower East Side trendy bar-of-the-week here).



KAARON BRISCOE (The Girl) began performing at a young age.  Some of her favorite roles include American Repertory Theatre: Polly X in Trojan Barbie; ART/MXAT/IATT: 1st Sydney/1st Visitor in Largo Desolato, and Tallahassee Shakespeare Festival: Audrey in As You Like It.  She has appeared on stages in London and Moscow, as well as in film and commercials.  Kaaron is a native of New Orleans, LA and holds an MFA from the American Repertory Theatre/Moscow Art Theatre/Institute for Advanced Theatre Training at Harvard University.



JAMES FLANAGAN (Joseph M Lonely Jr) most recently appeared in Taffety Punk’s Bootleg Two Noble Kinsmen.  He has performed at many local theatres, including Forum Theatre: dark play or stories for boys; The Studio Theatre: The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow; Round House Theatre: columbinus; Rep Stage: Kimberly Akimbo, Hamlet, Arcadia; and other venues, such as Everyman Theatre, New York Theatre Workshop, Longeacre Lea Productions, Quotidian Theatre, Perseverance Theatre, Baltimore Shakespeare Festival, VSA arts, and The Kennedy Center TYA.  Upcoming projects include Photograph 51 and The Moscows of Nantucket at Theatre J.  James received his training at Towson University.



WILLIAM HAYES (Apollonian Boy 2) recently graduated from Point Park University’s Conservatory of Performing Arts with a BFA in musical theatre where he appeared in The Frogs, Parade, and the premiere of Michael Rupert's Streets of America. Other favorite roles include Bobby in Urinetown, Riff in West Side Story and most recently Tony in Busch Gardens’ Celtic Fyre.



MITCHELL HÉBERT (Detective) is a long-time company member at Woolly where he was last seen in Clybourne Park.  His many credits at Woolly include: The Gigli Concert, Patience, Kvetch, and The Clean House.  He has performed at many of the DC area’s leading theatres, including: Round House Theatre, where he is a member of its Artist’s Round Table; Olney Theatre Center, where he directed the critically acclaimed production of Rabbit Hole; Shakespeare Theatre Company; Studio Theatre; Theatre of the First Amendment; Rep Stage; and Everyman Theatre in Baltimore. Upcoming projects include Charming Billy at Round House Theatre, and ART at Signature Theatre. He has been nominated for a Helen Hayes Award (Outstanding Lead Actor/The Drawer Boy) and received the Greater Baltimore Theatre Award for Outstanding Actor/Uncle Vanya.  Mitchell is on the faculty of the University of Maryland’s School of Theatre, Dance, and Performance Studies, where he is a Professor of Acting and Directing.



BEN KINGSLAND (Apollonian Boy 3) is appearing onstage at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company for the first time. His other credits include Theater Alliance:Richardin the Helen Hayes-nominated The Bread of Winter; Rep Stage: Danielin Intelligence; Baltimore Shakespeare Festival: Adam in Complete Works... Abridged and Interrogatorin All's Well That Ends Well; Everyman: Harry Bumperin The School for Scandal; Active Cultures: Tour Guide in The Constellation; Madcap Players: Gary in Mission Control. He has toured thirty-three states with the National Players, InterAct Story Theatre, Maryland Shakespeare Festival, and Educational Theatre Company.  Ben is a published playwright whose work has been supported by the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County. Education: Johns Hopkins University. Please visit



ANDREW M. LINCOLN (Apollonian Boy 1) is making his Woolly Mammoth debut in addition to his Washington, DC theatre debut.  He most recently performed with the Chesapeake Dinner Theater in Annapolis, MD in their production of Joseph.  He is a musician in the Greater Baltimore area and works for the organization, “Winds of Hope, Winds of Healing”, which raises money and awareness for the prevention of teen suicide.  He has directed and music directed for Children’s Theatre of Annapolis and is a volunteer for the Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center in Grasonville, MD.   He would like to thank his family and friends for their support.



MICHAEL RUSSOTTO (Man) returns to Woolly Mammoth, where he is member of the Acting Company.  Other Woolly credits include: Werner in Full Circle, Alexandra in She Stoops to Comedy, (Helen Hayes Award Nomination, Outstanding Lead Actor), and The Soul in Vigils, (Helen Hayes Award Nomination, Outstanding Ensemble.)  Most recently he appeared as Henry et al in Travels with my Aunt at Rep Stage, and as William Howard Taft in Teddy Roosevelt and the Ghostly Mistletoe, at The Kennedy Center’s TYA.  Favorite roles include Mr. Lawrence in Girl in the Goldfish Bowl at MetroStage, and Lou in Lenny and Lou, here at Woolly Mammoth.  Over the years, Mr. Russotto has also performed at The Folger Theatre, Onley Theatre Center, Theatre J, Washington Stage Guild, Theatre Alliance, Wayside Theatre, and Studio Theatre.  He teaches acting at The Theatre Lab, and is a long-time narrator of recorded books for the Library of Congress.



EMILY TOWNLEY (Woman) has previously appeared at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company as Lizzie in Maria/Stuart; Barbara in Spain, Heidi in Fuddy Meers, multiple roles in Wonder of the World, and Marilyn in Watbanaland. Her most recent local credits include Rep Stage: Stevie in The Goat, or Who is Sylvia?; Everyman Theatre: Mrs. Gibbs in Our Town, and Studio Theatre: Candida in Rock n’ Roll. Other area credits include performances for Round House Theatre, the Folger Shakespeare Theatre, The Kennedy Center, Horizons Theatre, Freedom Stage, Source Theatre and SCENA. She can be seen next as Cynthia in The Real Inspector Hound directed by John Vreeke for Metro Stage. Mad props to Howard.



DAVID ZINN (Set & Costume Design)

COLIN K. BILLS (Lighting Designer) is an Associate Artist with the Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, where he has lit over twenty productions, including Gruesome Playground Injuries, Clybourne Park, Full Circle, Eclipsed, Fever Dream, Stunning, The Unmentionables, Dead Man’s Cell Phone and The Clean House.  His designs have been seen at The Berkshire Theater Festival, CENTERSTAGE, Contemporary American Theatre Festival, Didactic Theatre, Everyman Theatre, Forum Theatre, Imagination Stage, Intiman Theatre, The Kennedy Center, Maryland Stage, Metro Stage, Olney Theatre Center, Round House Theatre, The Smithsonian Institution, Signature Theatre, Studio Theatre, Synetic Theatre, Theatre for the First Amendment, Theater J, Tsunami Theatre, Vermont’s Northern Stage, the Washington Revels, and The Williamstown Theatre Festival.  Mr. Bills has won two Helen Hayes Awards, for his designs of Angels in America: Millennium Approaches and Dead Man’s Cell Phone.  He is a 2009 recipient of a Princess Grace Fellowship in Theater, and is a graduate of Dartmouth College.  He shares his life with his beautiful wife Rachel.

MATT TIERNEY (Sound Designer) ’s recent productions include Manhattan Theatre Club: That Face; Playwrights Horizons: THIS; Soho Rep: Blasted (Hewes Award). Current associate of Elevator Repair Service (The Select: The Sun Also Rises and The Sound and the Fury at New York Theater Workshop - Lortel Nomination); Young Jean Lee’s Theater Company: Lear, The Shipment, Church;  and The Wooster Group; The Public Theatre: Hamlet (Lortel Nomination); the film There’s Still Time..Brother; Who’s Your Dada? at MOMA, and The Emperor Jones). Other credits include several productions with Ridge Theater Company including The Death of Klinghoffer, Decasia and Jennie Richee (Obie Award), Brooklyn Academy of Music, The Kitchen, P.S. 122, as well as many other theaters, domestic and abroad.

AARON FISHER (Projection Design) is returning to Woolly Mammoth where he assisted in the projection design of Full Circle and Current Nobody and was Video Engineer for Gruesome Playground Injuries. He recently designed projections for Signature’s Chess and Useless Theatre Company’s Perfect Chocolate Milkshake. Aaron has also assisted on several other projects, including Passing Strange at The Studio Theatre 2nd Stage, as well as La Momia En El Closet at Gala Hispanic Theatre.



Wednesday through Friday at 8pm, Saturday at 3pm & 8pm, Sunday at 3pm; Saturday November 6th only at 8pm (no 3pm); Sunday, November 7th at 7pm (no 3pm).

No performance Thanksgiving, Thursday, November 25th.

Special performance dates:

  • Pay-What-You-Can (PWYC): Monday, November 1st, and Tuesday, November 2nd, at 8pm
    Tickets sold at 6pm each evening, two per person, cash/check only. Lines begin forming around 5pm. Performances typically sell out.


Tickets start at $30.

Click here for exact dates and prices...


Additional Information:


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Emily Townley, Mitchell Hébert, and Michael Russotto in House of Gold (2010)


Kaaron Briscoe and Randy Blair in House of Gold (2010)
Photos by Stan Barouh


Woolly Mammoth would like to thank the following patrons for their generous support of
House of Gold:

Wade Carey & Ted Coltman
Nancy Hartsock, The Hasenberg and Hartsock Group at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney
Rick Kasten
Karl K. Kindel & Carrol Benner Kindel
Rebecca Klemm
Eleanor Roberts Lewis &
Roger K. Lewis
Julianna & Donald Mahley
Julie Rios
Sunny Jung Scully & William Alsup
Sallie Tyler


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Show Art Concept & Design:
Kate Landis Loewengart & Judy Luke
Illustration © Ronald J. Cala II / i2i art