Madi Distefano - Artistic Director - Madi Distefano is a Philadelphia hybrid theatre artist and is the Founding Artistic Director of Brat Productions. She works at local companies such as The Walnut Street Theatre, Azuka Theatre, Theatre Exile, Brat Productions and The Live Arts Festival, which produced her original rock-a-billy musical, EYE-95 RE-TARRED. She has received 9 Barrymore nominations for Excellence in Theatre in the categories of Directing, Best New Play, Original Music (x2), The F. Otto Haas Emerging Artist Award (x2), and Best Leading Actress (x2), which she won in 2005. Madi's original one-woman show, Popsicle's Departure, 1989, won Best Solo Show at the Edinburgh Festival and a Fringe First for new writing. A finalist for a PEW Fellowship in playwriting in 2010, Madi is also a recipient of grants from Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, The Independence Foundation, Philadelphia Theatre Initiative, and the Leeway Foundation. Madi holds an M.F.A. in Directing from Temple University, where she is an adjunct professor.
Jess Conda - Associate Artistic Director - has been working in Philadelphia as an actor, administrator and teaching artist since 2003. With Brat Productions, she has appeared onstage in Moby Dick--Rehearsed, Grease and Desist, Eye 95: Re-tarred, A 24 Hour The Bald Soprano, Haunted Poe and Carrie. As Production Manager: A 24 Hour The Bald Soprano ('10), Naked Cocktail ('08). As Stage Manager: Popsicle's Departure, 1989 (Philadelphia, NYC, Edinburgh and Glasgow premieres). Jess received a Barrymore Award nomination for Outstanding Ensemble in A 24 Hour The Bald Soprano, and also for Pay Up with Pig Iron Theatre Company. Other acting credits include work with Shakespeare in Clark Park, Flashpoint Theatre Company, The Walnut Street Theatre, Cabaret Red Light, Revival Burlesque and The Martha Graham Cracker Cabaret. BFA: Arcadia University.
Melissa Rodis - Managing Director - Melissa is a theatre artist, dancer, choreographer, producer, and arts administrator with a background in theatre production and small business management. She is committed to the development and accessibility of all aspects of the arts – whether front of house, back of house, in house or out of house. Having graduated from Amherst College with a BA Theatre and Dance and English, Melissa has lived, worked, and artisted in Philadelphia, in Massachusetts, and in Melbourne, Australia.
Elena Grace Smith - Production Manager - Elena is an administrator and technician dedicated to supporting the creation and sustaining of live art, theatre, and music. With Brat, she has previously worked on: MEANWHILE..., Popsicle's Departure 1989, and Eternal Glamnation. Elena entered the Philadelphia theatre scene through an internship in The Arden Theatre Company's costume shop in 2010 and has been exploring where her talents fit into the theatre world ever since. A native of Maple Glen, PA and a graduate of Earlham College with a BFA in Classical Studies; Elena is currently a 2012/2013 apprentice with InterAct Theatre Company.
Brian Grace-Duff is thrilled to become a BRAT. Over the last year he has also been in residence as a playwright with PDC@ Plays and Players, which gave him the opportunity to participate in a writing intensive with Robert Smythe at the Eugene O'Neill Center's national puppetry conference. Brian's play The Death Card was seen in the 2011 Fringe Festival, and originally conceived during P. Seth’s Bauer’s playwrighting workshop at Upenn where Brian also works as the Student Event Coordinator at the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. There, he originated a new performance series for local and student theatre collaborations, called MERGE. Other favorite creative moments include Remains (Endtimes Productions), The Opposite of Moths (PDC), Sports Centered (Tactile Theatre), Criminal (Pittsburgh New Works Festival) as well as his early work at West Chester University, his alma mater.