Angela Hsu

Angela is excited to be making her directing debut at the Oaks Theatre! Originally from the Bay Area, CA, Angela is an actress, singer, and director. She received her B.F.A. in music from Cornish College of the Arts, and trained at CAP21 Musical Theater Conservatory in New York, NY. She has performed on diverse stages on both the East and West coasts. In her private studio and within her role at management agency Smith Talent Group in New York, Angela has coached dozens of actors who have gone on to successfully book roles in movies, as well as television shows on Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon, and Broadway productions.    

Amy Hartman

Amy Hartman’s plays Animal Medicine and Disinfecting Edwin were both finalists at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Conference.  Disinfecting Edwin was produced by The Playwrights Theatre of Pittsburgh, Disinfecting Edwin was part of the Diverse City Theatre’s Green Room Series and was produced at Open Stage April. Half of Zerowas produced by the New Group Theater, North Carolina School for the Arts, and the winner of the Pittsburgh Playwright’s Festival in Black and White.  Chaucer’s Trash was finalist at the Actors Theatre of Louisville. Pretty Peggy was produced by Barebones Productions. The Chicken Snakewas awarded The Pittsburgh Foundation’s Award for Outstanding Achievement, selected by The Lincoln Center’s Director’s Lab,received its world premier at The Point Park Repertory Company January 2008 and has been nominated for the American Critics Award. America’s Most Wanted was read at the Women’s Theatre Alliance in Chicago and was developed at Luna Stage in Montclair,New Jersey, in the New Moon Series. Mazelwas commissioned by The Holocaust Center and deals with the true experiences of the Eastern European Jewish survivors living in Pittsburgh; it premiered at The Pittsburgh Jewish Theatre. The play was further developed at Playwrights Theatre of New Jersey. Mad Honey has received a roundtable reading at The Lark Development Center in NYC and received a workshop production at Bloomington Playwrights Project and wasproduced by Un’Seemed Shakespeare. Mercyand the Fire fly came out of a fifteen-minute play written in Bricolage Theatre’s Bus 3 Urban Scrawl the full length was commissioned by Diverse City Theatre in NYC and was given a workshop development at Luna Stageand produced by Luna Stage andThe Playhouse Rep. Amy’s plays are represented by Ron Gwiazda at Abrams Artist Agency.

John Vento

John Vento is often called a chameleon in the Pittsburgh music scene; and, while his critics may use the term as a pejorative, Vento views it as a compliment. He understands that they’re motivated by the frustration of their inability to lock him into a specific musical style. After all, the front man for the high-energy, hard-rockin’ bands, The Businessmen, and the Nied’s Hotel Band, is also known for his introspective, brooding solo recordings. Rather than a drawback, however, Vento considers such diversity to be among his strengths; and his fans agree. They relish sharing his tumultuous trek toward achieving his artistic vision, which he accomplishes by channeling a blend of eclectic influences through his own, raw emotions. Helping to engineer the roller coaster ride is a stout core of colaborators, including John Randall Fox, Buddy Hall, Tim Hadley, and Frank Ferraro, along with renowned playwright/lyricist, Amy Hartman. Many members of this crew have been with him for more than a decade; and it’s easy to understand why, as Vento consistently showers them with appreciation and accolades. Though a one-of-a-kind performer, he professes a great distaste for the word, “solo,” insisting that, “Without my collaborators, I would not have accomplished anything.” That’s no surprise to those who know him, as he truly is a humble, loving, and grateful person, who treasures his family and friends. Certainly, that comes across, loud and clear, in his honest, from-the-heart songs; and that, undoubtedly, is another quality which endears him to his fans. As he puts it, “If just one person is touched in some small way by one of my songs, that’s the greatest reward that I could receive.” Of course, it’s purely logical that Vento would find a great following in this town. His steely resistance to categorization is the very essence and backbone of Pittsburgh. Built by a veritable melting pot of blue-collar workers, the once-gritty city has risen from the slag heap, through the smoke and haze, to become a sparkling, spectacular hub of culture and learning. Yet, it remains true to its deeply-forged identity. And, through his molten lyrics and passionate delivery, Vento covers that entire spectrum.