Phoenix Cast


The San Diego show - playing at the Lyceum Theater April 18 through June 24, 2012 - is directed by Sarah Shahinian and produced by Philip Roger Roy, Bud Martin, & Dana Matthow (in association with Dr Dorothy Productions). Music Director: Cris O'Bryon; Choreographer: Carmela Guiteras; Piano/Keyboard: Cris O'Bryon; Guitar: Jim Mooney; Drums/Percussion: Tom Versen; Bass: Kevin Cooper, Sr.

Featuring: Nancy Snow Carr, Lisa H. Payton, Leigh Scarritt, and Kelsey Venter.

Read Reviews and See After Show Photos


San Diego Cast 2012

L-R: Lisa H. Payton, Leigh Scarritt, Kelsey Venter, Nancy Snow Carr
Ken Jacques Photography

San Diego Cast 2012

L-R: Nancy Snow Carr, Lisa H. Payton, Kelsey Venter
Ken Jacques Photography

San Diego Cast

Great Production Numbers with Fantastic Cast!
Ken Jacques Photography

San Diego Cast

L-R: Nancy Snow Carr, Lisa H. Payton, Kelsey Venter
Ken Jacques Photography


Kelsey is thrilled to be a working with the amazing women of RESPECT. Venter was last seen in Guys and Dolls (Sarah Brown) at Lambs Players Theatre. Other San Diego credits include How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Mama Who) at the Old Globe, Trying (Sarah) at Lambs Players, I Love You Because (Marcy) at North Coast Rep, Beehive: The 60's Musical and I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change with Miracle Theatre Productions at The Theatre in Old Town. Bay Area credits include Oliver! (Nancy) at Woodminster Amphitheater, She Loves Me (Amalia) and Boeing-Boeing (Gloria) at CenterREP, The Threepenny Opera (Polly Peachum) and Seagull in the Hamptons (Nina) with Shotgun Players, 'Tis Pity She's a Whore (Philotis) and A Christmas Carol (Martha Cratchit, Ghost of Christmas Past) with the American Conservatory Theater. Venter earned her BA in Theatre from San Diego State University and her MFA in Acting from the American Conservatory Theater.

Nancy got her start on the national tours of Phantom (as the understudy for Christine) and The Buddy Holly Story. Nancy's most recent San Diego projects include creating the role of Smeraldina in the world premiere of the new musical The Servant of Two Masters at Lamb's Players Theatre and Auntie Who in How the Grinch Stole Christmas at The Old Globe Theatre. She also appeared in the Washington, DC premiere of Hunter Foster and David Kirshenbaum's Summer of '42 (Dorothy) at the Round House Theatre. Some favorite regional credits include Carousel (Julie Jordon); Children of Eden (Eve/Mama Noah); Crimes of the Heart (Babe); The Last Night of Ballyhoo (Sunny); South Pacific (Nellie); I Love You, Your Perfect Now Change; and City of Angels (Bobbi/Gabby). Nancy received her BFA in Musical Theatre from Elon University and her MFA from San Diego State University. Nancy is a proud member of Actors' Equity Association and The National Association of Teachers of Singing. In addition to performing, Nancy operates a private studio where she offers voice/acting lessons and audition preparation. Nancy feels truly blessed and duly grateful to have the opportunity to make a living in the arts.


Lisa Payton

LISA PAYTON Lisa is a native of San Diego and a graduate of the San Diego School Of Creative And Performing Arts. She is also the proud mom of two wonderful kids, Payton and Dalise. Credits at San Diego REPertory Theatre: "Jenny Diver", The Threepenny Opera, "Mame", Intimate Apparel (NAACP Image Award); "Belle", A CHRISTMAS CAROL; "Shawnette", 'da KINK in my HAIR (NAACP Image Award), "Jeanette", Crowns & Ain't Mis'Behavin'. Other theatre credits include: "Grandma" and "Queen Abundance", Honey Bo and The Goldmine with La Jolla Playhouse; "Tina Turner", "Aretha Franklin", "Patti La Belle" and "Annette Funicello" BEEHIVE the 60's Musical, Theatre Under The Stars (Houston, TX), Country Dinner Playhouse (Denver, Co), and Miracle Theatre Productions/Theatre In Old Town (San Diego, Ca); "Roxy", Boomers with Lambs Players Theatre (Coronado, Ca); "Ronette", Little Shop Of Horrors and "Alice the Slave", Big River with CYC Theatre Group. "Etta James" at San Diego House Of Blues and many other stage, television, radio and voice over and producer credits. Lisa is extremely excited to be a part of this cast and producgtion of RESPECT and wishes to thank the artistic staff for awarding her this opportunity. She is also thankful to God for the chance to once again grace the stage and share her gifts/talents with wonderful and dedicated supporters of "The ARTS" such as yourselves!


Leigh Scarritt

A veteran of theater both on and off stage, Leigh is pleased to return to the Lyceum Theater after her successful run as Diana in Next to Normal, as well as directing Legally Blond. San Diego theatergoers may most recently remember her as Velma Von Tussel in Hairspray and Aunt Alicia in Gigi. Some of Leigh's other critically acclaimed performances include Nine directed by Brian Wells, Working directed by Sam Woodhouse, Bluebonnet Court, and Rapunzel both directed by Delicia Turner Sonnerber, Marjorie in What the Butler Saw, the title role in The Allergist's Wife both directed by Doug Lay, the Witch in Into the Woods, Eva Peron in Evita at Starlight Musical Theater, Ms. Pennywise in Urinetown at the San Diego REP, Morgan Le Fae in Camelot, Jill in Butterflies Are Free, Frenchie in Grease, Sally in Cabaret, I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change; Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors and Jo in Trolls directed by the incomparable Ole Kittleson. When not on stage Leigh is a mentor and coach to San Diego's up and coming talent and her students have gone on to such notable Universities as Berkeley School of Music, Musicians Institute, AMDA in New York and Los Angeles, USC, NYU, UCLA, Yale, and Syracuse, as well as Broadway, Off Broadway and National Tours. As a Director, Leigh's award winning productions of FAME and RENT won recognition from the National Youth Theater for Best Ensemble and Best Production. Other award winning directorial credits include BYE BYE BIRDIE, SPRING AWAKENING, HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL and YOU'RE A GOOD MAN CHARLIE BROWN. Leigh has also written the score for The Theater Inc's production of Orestes. Blessings to all who make theatre happen. Love to my fav photographer. "Tiffany, you are my forever hero."


Ashlee MayerASHLEE MAYER (Understudy)
Ashlee is a southern California native who is thrilled to be making her debut at the Lyceum Theatre in RESPECT! Ashlee has a B.F.A. in Musical Theatre from The American Musical and Dramatic Academy of Los Angeles. Her recent credits include Jo in a special production of Little Women, directed by Danny Gurwin of the original Broadway cast, and as choreographer for Cinderella at SHINE! Theatre in Los Angeles. Other credits include Seussical, How To Succeed..., Bye Bye Birdie, and West Side Story.



Cashae MonyaCASHAE MANYA (Understudy)
Cashae is hysterically excited to be a part of this musical journey! Recent credits include: The Car Plays (The La Jolla Playhouse/Moving Arts), Jingle Jammers (Legoland California), The Little Shop of Horrors (Cygnet Theatre), Our Town (Cygnet Theatre), Spelling Bee (North Coast Rep.), Hip Pocket (Lamb's Players), High School Musical (Starlight Theatre) and Memphis (La Jolla Playhouse/The 5th Avenue Theatre). Monya would like to say "Te Amo Mucho!" to all who have given her the courage to pursue her passion fearlessly and FIERCELY. Enjoy!




Dorothy MarcicDOROTHY MARCIC (Playwright/Producer)
Dorothy's first play was written when she was six years old and was performed in a make-shift theater-tent in her Pewaukee, Wisconsin backyard. Many years later she became a professor at Columbia and Vanderbilt Universities and the author of twelve books, including RESPECT: Women and Popular Music, the basis for this performance, a project she has been working on since 1999. She actually had an Aunt Lilly, Uncle Vernie, and a mother named Leone, all of whose stories are incorporated in the show. To read more about these family members/characters visit the show's website.

Dorothy's other books include Understanding Management, Love Lift Me Higher, and four children's titles with Golden Books. Many years ago Dr. Marcic worked on the TV show, Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. She has traveled the U.S. and the world doing the one-woman show, The Musical History of Women, which has been well-received in Australia, New Zealand, Israel, Holland, England and South Africa. Dorothy's newest musical, SISTAS, is currently playing Off-Broadway. She's appeared on C-SPAN, CMT, and Bravo Network.

As a Fulbright Scholar, she taught at the Univ. of Economics in Prague. She has three incredible daughters—Roxanne, Solange and Elizabeth—who are her proudest achievements. Dorothy is grateful to the women in her family for inspiring much of the piece. Her personal website is


Sarah ShahinianSARAH SHAHINIAN (Director)
Sarah's "journey" with Respect began in 2009 when she assistant directed the show with Bud Martin at Act II Playhouse in PA, and she is incredibly grateful to Bud for allowing her to take the helm this time around! Sarah is the Associate Artistic Director of The Active Theater in New York City (, where she will next be teaming with Artistic Director Nathaniel Shaw on Active's upcoming production of Body Language. She comes to San Diego directly from Melbourne, Australia, where she has been teaching masterclasses in "acting through song" at several performing arts institutions. As an actor, her credits include: Les Misérables (Eponine — 25th Anniversary Tour & Houston TUTS), OKLAHOMA! (Ado Annie — Revival National Tour & Fulton Opera House), Little Women (Jo - Syracuse Stage), Picnic at Hanging Rock (Lincoln Center & The O'Neill Theater Center), Married Alive (Act II Playhouse), Magnetic North (The Active Theater & Act II Playhouse), Oedipus at Colonus (Handcart Ensemble), Stephen Schwartz's Snapshots (Susie — Seaside Music Theatre & Lyric Theatre of OKC). FILM/TV: Guiding Light (CBS), The Band (NYTVF), Brothers Three, On The Prowl, and America's Got Talent (as part of the cast of Les Misérables).

Sarah is also an animal lover and NYU Tisch graduate. Check out for more!


Cris O'BryonCRIS O'BRYON (Music Director/ Keyboardist)
REGIONAL: Midsummer Night's Dream, Bonnie & Clyde, The Farnsworth Invention (La Jolla Playhouse); The Constant Wife, How The Grinch Stole Christmas, Much Ado About Nothing, Odyssey, Paramour (The Old Globe); Storyville, Princess and the Black-Eyed Pea (San Diego REP); Brooklyn Boy (Scripps Ranch Theatre); The Rat Pack (Broadway SD), Forever Plaid, Beehive, Das Barbecu, (Theater in Old Town); Dreamgirls (SDMT); Altar Boyz, Nunsense II, The Full Monty (Welk); Glory Man, Susan and God, Tarantara! Tarantara!, South Pacific, Joseph, Festival(s) of Christmas (Lamb's Players); I Love a Piano, Phantom, Goodbye Girl (Moonlight Stage). TOUR: Song on the Wind (New Life Fine Arts) Forbidden Broadway (across the US).

Cris maintains a private voice, piano, and acting studio.


Carmela is thrilled to be returning to RESPECT as it opens in San Diego, after choreographing the show's 2010-11 National Tour & productions at the Society Hill Playhouse in Philadelphia and at Act II Playhouse in Ambler, PA, & having the time of her life! She also choreographed Married Alive! at Act II. She has directed Off Broadway and Off Off Broadway (with Al Carmines), music videos and numerous productions at five universities and regional and stock companies up and down the East Coast. She was named Best Director by the Northeastern Pennsylvania and North Jersey Critic's Association and is proud cofounder and Artistic Director of Stages of Imagination, a children's theater company that has won two Parent Choice Awards and two National Telly Awards. Carmela has been the Director at Shawnee Playhouse, in the Poconos, for the past 30 years. She has taught dance in various studios in Phila, NJ and NYC and has owned her own Dance Studio in Springfield ,PA. for 17 years. Carmela sends thanks to Buddy (a guy who can multi-task) and mucho love to her family and fabulous kids for helping her Survive.... everyday!

JAMES LEITNER (Lighting Designer)
James is a Philadelphia-based lighting designer and has been since 1977. Outside of Pennsylvania, he has worked extensively for Tri-Cities Opera, Sarasota Opera, Milwaukee Ballet, Indianapolis Ballet, Miami City Ballet, and the Vail International Dance Festival.

HEATHER M. BROSE (Stage Manager)
Recent PSM credits include: Tortilla Curtain, The Great American Trailer Park Musical, The Road to Mecca, Doubt, Water & Power, The Blessing of a Broken Heart, San Diego REP; A Behanding in Spokane, Little Shop of Horrors, Cabaret, It's a Wonderful Life, Private Lives, The Piano Lesson, Man From Nebraska, Cygnet Theatre; Dreamgirls, SDMT; A Shayna Maidel, North Coast Rep; Menopause The Musical at the Grove Theatre in Upland, CA and at the Lyceum Theatre in San Diego; Salome and The Father directed by Estelle Parsons for The Actors Studio starring Al Pacino and Dianne Wiest; and Stephen Sondheim's 70th Birthday Bash at the Hollywood Bowl. Proud member of Actor's Equity Association.

BUD MARTIN (Producer)
Bud is thrilled to return to his roots in the theatre after a "brief, 25 year hiatus" in corporate finance. He is currently the Producing Artistic Director at Act II Playhouse in Ambler where he has directed Married Alive, Magnetic North, Respect: A Musical Journey of Women, On Golden Pond, The Story of My Life (Barrymore Award) & Art (Barrymore Nomination) and Time Stands Still in co-production with Delaware Theatre Company. He also co-produced & directed the recent US tour of Respect & co-produced the tour of My Mother's Italian, My Father's Jewish & I'm in Therapy! with Phil and Dana. On Broadway he has co-produced The Story of My Life, 9 to 5 the Musical, Burn the Floor, Time Stands Still (Tony nomination) with Laura Linney, & La Bete with Mark Rylance & David Hyde Pierce, & in London's West End, the Olivier award-winning Legally Blonde, the Musical & La Bete and George Stiles' The Three Musketeers at the Rose Theatre, Kinston upon Thames. Most recently, Off-Broadway, he produced & directed Any Given Monday by Bruce Graham at 59 E. 59 Street Theaters.

Dana is a Long Island native New Yorker whose theatrical career spans more than 25 years of producing, general management, theatre management, advertising and promotions. His credits include, Broadway, off-Broadway and Touring Productions: Kingdoms staring Roy Dotrice, Armand Assante and Maria Tucii, A Jew Grows In Brooklyn, Carnival Knowledge, a behind the scenes look at the astounding and disappearing world of the American sideshow; Magic Hands Freddy starring Michael Rispoli and Ralph Macchio, Underneath the Lintel, Maybe Baby It's You, Grandma Sylvia's Funeral (a/k/a the longest running funeral in history) and Hysterical Blindness starring Leslie Jordon. He recently co-produced RESPECT on tour, and My Mother's Italian... in Philadelphia as well as Zero Hour in Toronto. Mr. Matthow began his producing career with Sea Marks by Adventures in Paradise star Gardner Mckay. He has also produced for the screen the feature film Silent Prey. For 10 years Mr. Matthow owned and operated the Soho Playhouse in New York City. He has produced theatre throughout Florida, Philadelphia, Chicago, Phoenix and Baltimore with his lifelong friend of 15 years, Philip Roger Roy. He is also the founder and original Publisher of City Guide magazine, New York's #1 weekly visitor and entertainment guide. But his greatest successes to date are his happy marriage to his brilliant and gorgeous wife Lia and his talented and beautiful daughter Presley.


Philip RoyPHILIP ROGER ROY (Producer)
Philip has produced more than 45 shows since 1972. His most recent project was the successful 2010-11 national tour of Respect: A Musical Journey of Women, after its 20-week engagement in Philadelphia. Recent productions include My Mother's Italian, My Father's Jewish & I'm in Therapy! (with Bud & Dana) in 2011-2012 in Philadelphia, San Diego, Toronto, Phoenix, Baltimore, & Florida. He & Dana also produced A Jew Grows In Brooklyn at the Lamb's Theater in the heart of Broadway in New York, & two national tours. He was Associate Producer & General Manager of the Philadelphia production of Menopause The Musical, which played 3.5 years to more than 212,000 (mostly) menopausal women. His production of Let My People Come (LMPC) played over 2300 performances in Philadelphia between 1977 & 1987. Mr. Roy also produced LMPC in 20 cities throughout the USA & Canada, & his Toronto production ran eight years as Canada's longest-running musical ever! Mr. Roy's other productions include: Family Secrets, Grandma Sylvia's Funeral (co-produced in Philadelphia with Dana Matthow), Greater Tuna (at the Walnut Street Theatre & the Delaware Theatre Company), The World of Lenny Bruce, Confessions of an Irish Rebel, Judy! The New Judy Garland Musical, El Grande de Coca Cola, Pretzels (by Jane Curtin), Murray Horwitz as Sholom Aleichem, Cloud 9, Groucho: A One-Man Show With Two Women, & Bullshot Crummond & The Fantasticks (in which he also performed).

As owner/ founder of Philadelphia's legendary Grendel's Lair Cabaret Theater (for 15 years), Mr. Roy produced concerts with hundreds of acts including The Police, Dizzy Gillespie, Buddy Rich, Charles Mingus, Mose Allison, Pat Martino, Phil Ochs, Renaissance & Geraldine Fitzgerald. From 1997 to 2000 Mr. Roy owned & operated the New Market Cabaret Theater in Philadelphia. Mr. Roy co-produced two shows with Bill Franzblau: The Male Intellect: An Oxymoron? in Philadelphia where it enjoyed four return engagements, & in 2009 they brought Say Goodnight Gracie to Philadelphia. He is always happy to be working again with co-producers Bud Martin (RESPECT, My Mother's Italian...) & Dana Matthow (A Jew Grows in Brooklyn, RESPECT, My Mother's Italian...).

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