New Works Panel

New Works Panel

The Boston New Works Project is no longer accepting submissions.

Sharman Altshuler founded Moonbox Productions in the spring of 2011. After 15 years of practicing veterinary medicine, Sharman teamed up on a whim with friend and colleague Allison Choat to put on a production of Godspell.  It ran for a weekend in April of 2011 at the Brattle Theater in Cambridge, MA to a packed house and critical acclaim – and thus the adventure began!  Nearly 10 years and 20 shows later, Moonbox continues to dedicate itself to producing high quality, local theater with a core commitment to equity, accessibility and community engagement, and looks ahead with excitement and determination to its second decade – and beyond!  

Terry Byrne has been covering the Boston arts scene for nearly three decades, first at the Boston Herald, then for WGBH TV’s “Greater Boston” and currently at the Boston Globe. Her theater criticism was featured in a segment on ABC-TV’s 20/20. She earned her MFA in Playwriting from Boston University in 2010, where she received a Robert Pinsky Global Travel Fellowship. Her play, “Rivals in the Clay,” was selected as a semi-finalist for the O’Neill Theater Conference in 2016. She is an Affiliated Scholar at the Women’s Studies Research Center at Brandeis University and a member of the advisory council at StageSource.

Andrew Child (he/him/his) is a multi-hyphenate, Boston-based theatre artist with a penchant for shows without couches in them and a belief that no cornerstone of our form is too sacred to demolish. His work as director, actor, and designer has been seen recently with groups including A.R.T., Villa La Pietra, Moonbox Productions, New England Conservatory, Clark University, Massasoit Community College, and Sparkhaven Theatre and he has created site-specific works in partnership with institutions including the Fuller Craft Museum, Charles River Museum of Industry and Innovation, and the Oliver Mill Estate. He is currently a freelance contributor for Broadway World Boston and the performing arts coordinator for the Boys and Girls Club of South Boston. More at

Allison Olivia Choat (Associate Artistic Director and Founding Partner, Moonbox Productions) (she, her, hers/ they, them, theirs) is an IRNE and Elliot Norton award-winning theater artist whose work lies at the intersection of direction, design, and physical storytelling. She is honored to be Associate Artistic Director of Moonbox Productions and Founding Partner of the company. Their most recent production with Moonbox was 2019’s Elliot Norton Award winner for Outstanding Musical, Parade (Associate Director/ Dramaturg). Additional 2019 credits include Moonbox’s Caroline, or Change (Director; Elliot Norton nomination, Outstanding Musical), and The Nora Theatre’s Cloud 9 (Assistant Director/ Voice and Dialect Coach/ Set Design; Elliot Norton Award, Outstanding Production; Elliot Norton Nomination, Outstanding Design). Offstage, Allison works as an academic administrator and member of the Committee of Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging at Harvard University SEAS, is a contributing voice actor with The Penumbra Podcast and Colonial Radio Theatre, and maintains a private practice as a voice and movement coach for public speakers, performers, and athletes. Allison holds degrees from Oberlin College and the Oberlin Conservatory of Music. 

Representation Matters: Allison is a member of the LGBTQIA2S+ community and is a person with a disability (Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome). 

Shana Gibbs (she, her, hers) is a biracial native of Syracuse/Cazenovia in Upstate New York who currently lives in Boston, MA. As a Gallaudet University alumnus with a degree in English, she also holds two master’s degrees from Boston University in Deaf Education (Ed.M.) and Educational Leadership, Administration and Policy (Ed.L.).  She works as a part-time faculty adjunct professor for Northeastern University, Lesley University and University of North Florida. She also serves as the President of Massachusetts Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (MassRID) and VP of Community Relations for Massachusetts State Association for the Deaf (MSAD). As a freelance Deaf Interpreter, her specialty is in Performing Arts consultation and interpreting in theatre as well as in higher education. She is passionate and actively involved with various community-oriented collaborative work on accessibility, intersectionality, and language development in deaf and hard of hearing children. She aims to be a doctorate student by 2021 in a self-designed interdisciplinary track that somehow combines Deaf Education and its communities, Leadership, Administration and Policy, with social justice.

Arthur Gomez is a Boston based Actor and Director. Previous credits include: Miracle on 34th St. – Mr. Macy, “Bowl-Mor Lanes “- Ed, “Three Musketeers” – Monsieur Bonacieux, “Caroline, or Change” – Assistant Director, “39 Steps” – Assistant Director, “Twelfth Night” – Feste, “Shipwrecked” – Captain Jensen, “The Nether” – Woodnut, “Kiss of the Spiderwoman” – Ensemble.

Melinda Lopez is a multiple award winning playwright and performer, and the Artist-in-Residence at the Huntington Theatre Company. She is the recipient of the 2019 Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Achievement, and a National Mellon Foundation Resident Playwright. Her plays include: MALA (available on Audible in Spanish and English,) YERMA (adaptation,) BACK THE NIGHT, BECOMING CUBA, and SONIA FLEW (Elliot Norton, Best New Play, Best Production.) Melinda also teaches MFA playwrights at BU. 

Davron S. Monroe is a Boston based award winning singer and actor with vocal talents that run the gamut from Opera to Musical Theatre, gospel to jazz and everything else in between. Davron is the 2019 recipient of The Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Musical performance in Breath and Imagination the story of Roland Hayes, African-American classic concert artist (who was also a Boston based artist in the later years of his life). Other performances of note include Murder on the Orient Express, The Wiz, Camelot, Company, My Fair Lady, City of Angels, Sweeney Todd, One Man, Two Guvnors, The Mikado, Avenue Q, and Ain’t Misbehavin’ (Lyric Stage Co.), The View Upstairs (Speakeasy Stage) The Little Mermaid, RAGTIME (Company Theatre), Man of La Mancha (New Rep), Caroline or Change, Godspell (Moonbox Productions), Hairspray (Reagle Music Theatre), Dreamgirls, Jesus Christ Superstar, Children of Eden, Songs for a New World (premiere, Key West Symphony, Broadway Across America), Smokey Joe’s Café, Cinderella, Streakin’!, a ’70s musical revue, and Sweet Charity. Davron has also appeared with many orchestral and vocal organizations, such as Boston Landmarks Orchestra (Lost in the Stars – a celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the “I Have a Dream” speech, and The Chariot Jubilee), Brevard Music Center, Finalist in the Orlando Opera’s Heinz Rehfuss Singing Actor Awards, Disney Entertainment’s Voices of Liberty, South Florida Symphony, Houston Ebony Opera Guild, the New England Spiritual Ensemble and many other organizations throughout the greater Boston area. Davron was the first recipient of the Bob Jolly Award for local actors. Future engagements include Jelly’s Last Jam- Story of Jelly Roll Morton African-American Jazz pioneer and 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Both with New Repertory Theatre Company 2021.

Jeffrey Salzberg has designed Lighting for Moonbox for many of its shows over the past decade, and most recently created Moonbox’s Shadowbox Program which pairs emerging local artistist, technicians and theater managers with Moonbox staff for one-on-one mentoring experiences.  Jeffrey has designed lighting for theatre, ballet, and modern dance troupes for over 30 years, and has served as a theater arts consulrtant and educator.  He is thrilled to be involved in this project that will be highlighting new works by local artists.

Photo by Stephen F. Bevacqua

Dawn Simmons is the co-founder and artistic director of the Front Porch Arts Collective, a black theater company committed to advancing racial equity in Boston through theatre. She also founded New Exhibition Room in 2008 to produce provocative, political, and affordable theater events. She is also the  Executive Director of StageSource, an arts service organization focusing on work force development and sector improvement in theatre across New England. Dawn is originally from Buffalo, NY, where she received a B.A. in English Literature from the University of Buffalo. She went on to study playwrighting at Boston University and directs for regional theatres such as The Front Porch Arts Collective, WAM Theatre, The Nora Theatre, Greater Boston Stage Company, SpeakEasy Stage Company, Bad Habit Productions, Fresh Ink Theatre and Lyric Stage Company. More recently, she served as the Director of Performing Arts at the Boston Center for the Arts.  

Cheryl D. Singleton is a professional actress and arts leader with stage, screen, television and voice-over experience. Originally from Brooklyn NY, Cheryl learned her craft by working both on and off-stage. Some of her regional credits include: The American Place Theatre and The Women’s Project, Theatre Matrix and Theater for the New City, The American Repertory Theatre, Lyric Stage Company, Wheelock Family Theatre, New Repertory Theatre, Gloucester Stage, Zeitgeist Stage Co., Queer Soup and ImprovBoston. Cheryl currently serves on the boards of StageSource (former VP) and the Theatre Community Benevolent Fund and recently finished her tenure on the board of ImprovBoston. 

Phil Tayler (He Series) is honored to serve as a panelist and core team-member for Moonbox’s Boston New Works Project.  Phil is an award winning multi-disciplinary theatre artist in the Greater Boston Area. As an actor Phil has received Boston’s Elliot Norton Awards for his work in Buyer and Cellar and Avenue Q (Lyric Stage Company of Boston), Phil has also been honored for his work in CabaretFloyd CollinsStones in His Pockets, Sweeney Todd, Of Mice and Men, Spring Awakening, and in Hair. Phil was the co-producer of  last season’s Elliot Norton Winner for Best Musical, Parade, in which he also starred as Leo Frank. As an entrepreneur, Phil is the co-founder of a disruptive new Mobile Optometric start-up, OnSight Eyes, and has worked with a variety of Healthcare organizations with a sharp focus on increasing the public’s access to affordable state-of-the-art healthcare services. As of February 2020, Phil Tayler serves as Moonbox’s Director of Marketing and Communications in a long overdue return to the Theatre full-time. Phil Tayler can also be found performing the role of “Young (sleep-deprived) Father” in an ongoing original creation. #gabeyshade #seeyatoMari

Kira Troilo is a performer and choreographer who is no stranger to Moonbox Productions. She recently received an Elliott Norton nomination for her choreography for Moonbox’s recent production of Parade. She also appeared as Emmie Thibodeaux in their production of Caroline, or Change. Recent local performing credits include Little Women, In the Heights (Wheelock Family Theatre), Gypsy, Camelot (Lyric Stage), Sister Act (NextDoor Theater) and Hairspray (Palace Theatre). Recent choreography credits include Pandora (Blue Spruce Theatre), The Little Mermaid (IRNE Nomination), Jesus Christ Superstar, Aida (Fiddlehead Theatre Company), Evita, Chicago, and How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying (Weston Drama Workshop). She also recently assistant directed Admissions at SpeakEasy Stage Company. Kira graduated with a B.F.A. from Emerson College. She lives in Framingham with her husband Jared and her son Levi.