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The Importance of Being Earnest

Feb 27–Mar 3, 2018

Committee members

Chairman: Siân Ackroyd

Vice Chairman: Charles Slovenski

Treasurer: Jane Easton

Jane has been treasurer for the past 8 years, and was chairman from 2001-2004. Fleetingly she was even seen on the GEDS stage some years ago, as Rita the blond bombshell girlfriend of Billy Liar and also as Cinderella's wicked stepmother for GAOS and as good and bad fairies in their pantomimes. Now she plays more of a backstage role and has stage managed over 2 dozen shows for GEDS and has also been involved in lighting about the same number, as well as a few for GAOS.

Jane was instrumental in bringing the Festival of European Amateur Theatrical Societies (FEATS) to Geneva for the first time in 1999, was the organising chairman then and again when GEDS hosted FEATS 2011. Since retiring from gainful employment she has been involved in the Theatre In English ticket office, is their current chairman and coordinates ticket sales for many of our shows.

Secretary: Chris Bailey

Christopher Bailey is currently serving as Secretary and Workshops manager for the GEDS committee. For the opening production of the GEDS season, Bailey is making his GEDS directorial debut with Crimes of the Heart. GEDS audiences are familiar with a variety of memorable acting roles Bailey has peformed in the last several years including the patriarch Ben from Lillian Hellmann's The Little Foxes, the brash Hollywood Producer Karl in Ben Elton's Popcorn, as well as a very suspicious accountant in the murder mystery Who Killed Hamlet. Bailey has also fostered GEDS' popular theatre workshop series and led a number of acting workshops including 'Building a Character' and 'Preparation for the Actor'.

Educated at Columbia and Oxford Universities, and trained in Meisner Technique at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, for over ten years Bailey was a professional actor, director and playwright based in New York City with numerous theatre, film and television credits including Broadway and regional theatres before entering the field of development and global health. He has also toured throughout the UK. Currently when not acting, directing, or mentoring others in theatre, he is the Coordinator of On-line Communications for the World Health Organization.

Publicity Coordinator: Tamaam Madi-Nassar

Partnerships and Workshops: Christina Vasala Kokkinaki

Christina is an enthusiastic newbie at the GEDS Committee. Very eager to support GEDS and learn as much as possible from the abundant experience of its membership. She is doing tiny steps in playreadings and productions. If you feel like chatting to her, try first in Greek and she might tell you that in her free time she enjoys being a Fox, dancing mpalos and organizing fullmoon parties.

Playreadings Coordinator: Jan Auke Dijkstra

Born and raised and studied Medicine in the Netherlands Jan lived afterwards for 8 years in the Dutch West Indies and for 12 years in Africa practising medicine, and that is what he is still doing as a GP in Pays de Gex and Haute Savoie in France since about 9 years by now. Fond of artistic expressive arts like theatre, painting and dance came to GEDS a year back and figured in several playreadings so far. Currently involved in managing the stage for the first production of the new season 'Crimes of the Heart'. Loves to ride a bike as well as consuming tasty spicy food, listening to great music or watching in particular Italian movies.

Minutes Secretary: Tim Hancox

Tim has been around the Geneva amateur theatre scene since his schooldays, first playreading as Richard Coeur de Lion in The Lion in Winter, a role later reprised in GEDS’ stage production in 1989, an elegant event in Holy Trinity Church (mere theatres not being available at that time). How interesting to unpack the London hampers of costumes and discover that we were renting many of those used for the earlier film. Tim continued to delude himself with monarchical grandeur as Henry VIII in A Man for All Seasons and as Emperor Joseph II in Amadeus. He has also filled most roles backstage at one time or another, and directed many shows for GEDS (and the now-defunct Little Theater of Geneva). Favourites? Not really: Tim reckons you get tunnel vision on whatever you are currently directing, and enjoy it to the full. Highlights? The time the Royal Shakespeare Company brought The Winter’s Tale to Geneva in collaboration with GEDS and needed walk-ons.

Technical Manager: Nathalie Stump

I have been a member of GEDS for 30 years and on the technical team for 21 years and on the committee for many of those.Not having the word memory or acting skills to go on stage, I do my theatre back stage which is most satisfying as we techies know that no play can be done without us. I have the reputation of being able to find,borrow,source or make almost anything from body parts,sash windows,jewellery,fake documents and even sardines, I am very priveledged to be a Chipendale chipette and represent the technical crew on committee.

Membership Secretary: Margaret Byskov

Margaret is in her first season as Membership Secretary. She has been with GEDS for many years. You won't see her on stage but she has arranged several playreadings and been prompt for some great productions. Loves all the talent that finds it way to GEDS.

Spotlight Editor: Rick Vincent

Webmaster (Off-Committee): Viki Lazar

Viki arrived in Geneva seven years ago and joined GEDS in May 2011 via No Holds Bard, an evening of Shakespeare scenes performed atop barstools. She worked her way up through playreadings to the GEDS stage where she has appeared several times, most recently in Dancing at Lughnasa (Chris, March 2015). She also has arranged playreadings for GEDS, and directed the main stage production Baby with the Bathwater (March 2014). Viki joined the Committee in April 2013 as a member of the Publicity and Productions Sub-committees. After three years on Committee, she is helping out off-committee as webmaster. Please send any queries her way! When Viki isn’t working for GEDS, she works at a private philanthropic foundation in a joint programmatic-administrative role. And when she’s not working for them, either, she’s playing with her improv troupe, the Renegade Saints.