Melville & Hawthorne Graphic

A John Steven Kellett Memorial Series Production

World Premiere

August 1-10, 2024
MATCH Houston – Matchbox 1
Drama  |  2 hours with intermission
Recommended for teens & adults

The Story

Melville & Hawthorne follows the year and a half that authors Herman Melville and Nathaniel Hawthorne spent living only a mile away from each other in the Berkshires while Melville wrote and developed the novel Moby Dick (which is dedicated to Hawthorne). It is based entirely on historical fact and the correspondence between the two and it fills in the gaps of their relationship. It chronicles their growing feelings for each other and Melville’s struggle to write about open sexuality and race in the year 1851, as our country struggles with talks of secession and heads into civil war, as well as the influence Melville’s relationship with Hawthorne had on Moby Dick. The play covers modern themes such as race equality, sexual liberation, social justice, freedom and the impact of literature on political events. This production, directed by Andrew Ruthven, is the latest from our award-winning John Steven Kellett Memorial Series.

Performances – August 1-10, 2024


MATCH HoustonMatchbox 1
3400 Main St, Houston, TX 77002
(Location & Parking)

$25 Adults | $15 Students
*Tickets are pay-what-you-can on opening preview (Aug. 1, 2024) and $15 for theatre industry professionals on Industry Night (Aug. 5, 2024)

The Cast

Curtis Barber Headshot

Curtis Barber (David Dudley Field II)

Curtis Barber has acted and directed in the Houston area for the past 12 years, after earning a BFA in Acting from Texas State University. Some recent acting credits include The Pillowman (Michal), Coyote on a Fence (Sam Fried), and The Eight: Reindeer Monologues (Cupid) with Dirt Dogs Theatre Co. and The Invisible Play (Colin) with Cone Man Running Productions. He also serves as the Artistic Associate for Dirt Dogs Theatre Co.

Tyler Galindo (Herman Melville)

Tyler has been acting professionally in the Houston area for 17 years. Some of his favorite credits include: Jesus (Jesus Christ Superstar), Beast (Disney’s Beauty and the Beast), Frank (Merrily We Roll Along), Pete (Pete the Cat, the Musical), Bobby (Urinetown), and The Man in the Yellow Suit (Tuck Everlasting). In 2011, Tyler performed off-Broadway at the New York Musical Theatre Festival. In addition to theatre, Tyler also provides English-dub as a voice-over artist in the Anime world. Tyler is thrilled to join Thunderclap Productions in telling this beautiful story about love.

Cortney Hafner Headshot

Cortney Hafner (Sophia Peabody Hawthorne)

Cortney Hafner is ecstatic to be making her Thunderclap Productions debut with such an incredible work of art. Her recent credits include Bottom (Midsummer Night’s Dream), Beatrice (Much Ado about Nothing), Mrs. Clackett/Dottie (Noises Off), Elmire (Tartuffe), Anna (The Feast), Jeannie (Hair), Beggar Woman (Sweeney Todd) and Soupy Sue (Urinetown). Cortney would like to thank Taylor, her friends and her family for attending all of her shows and being constant supporters of her dreams.

Brock Hatton Headshot

Brock Hatton (Nathaniel Hawthorne)

Alley Theatre: A Christmas Carol; Main Street Theater: Present Laughter, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Pete the Cat, Mr. Popper’s Penguins, Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley, Junie B. Jones Is Not a Crook (Tour), The Wizard of Oz, Fancy Nancy Splendiferous Christmas, Shrek the Musical; Musical Theatre Heritage, Kansas City, MO: My Fair Lady; Houston Grand Opera: Gotterdamerung, Madame Butterfly, Onegin; Unity Theatre: Now and Then, A Grand Night for Singing, Plaid Tidings; Strange Bird Immersive: The Man from Beyond; Bayou City Concert Musicals: Bells Are Ringing; Bodhi Theatre: Roar; New Theatre: Buddy Holly, the Buddy Holly Story; Taichung National Theatre: Gotterdammerung; Standing Room Only Productions: Assassins; Stageworks Theatre: It’s a Wonderful Life. Education: B.S., Texas A&M University, Biomedical Science. Brock is so happy to be performing in his first production for Thunderclap Productions. He would like to thank Lee and his family and friends for all their constant support.

Sophie Powers (Elizabeth Shaw Melville)

Sophie is thrilled to make her debut with Thunderclap Productions in this captivating narrative that shines a spotlight on love. She is currently a sophomore studying a BFA in Theatre with an emphasis in Acting/Directing at Sam Houston State University. Eat ’em up Bearkats! Her favorite credits include: Matt (Matt & Ben), Jo March (Little Women), Karen (The Children’s Hour), and Sharpay (High School Musical). She would like to thank Jonathan and her family, friends, and educators, who have always supported her aspirations and dreams. Follow her on Instagram @slpowers to keep up with her theatrical journey!

The Director

Andrew Ruthven (Director)

Credits include Main Street Theater: [Director] Permanent Collection, The Weir, Daddy Long Legs, The Revolutionists, Working, Putting It Together, A Year with Frog and Toad, Into the Woods, Close Up Space, Dog Act, It’s Only Life, A Catered Affair, [Actor] Mr. Pim Passes By (Brian Strange), Urinetown (Mr. McQueen), An Empty Plate in the Café du Grand Boeuf (Antoine), Comic Potential (Adam Trainsmith), Hay Fever (Simon Bliss), The Mask of Moriarty (Bunny St. John Manders), A Year with Frog and Toad (Frog); Unity Theatre: [Director] Now and Then, Daddy Long Legs, The Fantasticks, [Actor] Camelot (Sir Dinadan); Texas Repertory Theater: [Actor] Company (Peter); Theater LaB Houston: [Actor] Passion (Sergeant Lombardi), Assassins (John Hinckley); Queensbury Theatre: [Director] Man of La Mancha. Education: M.F.A., University of Houston; B.A., University of Texas at Austin. 

The Writer

Adi Teodoru (Writer)

Adi Teodoru came to the United Stated at 11 years old from Romania as a political refugee and has resided in Houston since then. She started writing in her first year here, to develop her language skills and as a creative outlet for the loneliness that so often plagues new immigrants. This experience fueled her passion for literature and the English language as a medium for enacting change in the world around her. She graduated from University of Houston with a double bachelor’s degree in Theatre and Creative Writing, then spent a year travelling through Europe expanding her historical knowledge and perspective. All of these experiences have culminated in the writing of Melville & Hawthorne.

The Production Team

Dru Bowman Headshot

Dru Bowman (Costumes Coordinator)

Dru is a seasoned theatre technician with over 9 years in the professional industry. During her years in Theatrical work, Dru has worked as a Seamstress, Designer, Stagehand, Board operator, Stage Manager, and Director. Dru is excited to step once again into the role of Costumer for this production, and would like to thank Adi Teodoru for bringing this show together and Taylor Ford for being there always.

Nychollete Easter (Assistant Stage Manager)

Nychollete Easter is a Houston based director and Teaching Artist! Nychollete has been doing theatre for 10+ years and has worked with several regional theaters including The St. Louis Black Repertory Company and Main Street Theatre. Nychollete recently received her BA in acting and directing from Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas. Nychollete strives to tell stories that represent a diverse group of characters and people! Nychollete is very excited to be back in her hometown and hopes to bring the importance of the arts back to her community!

Liz Lacy (Lighting Designer)

Bio Coming Soon…

Jacob C. Sanchez (Set, Props, & Sound Designer)

Jacob is excited to help Thunderclap Productions share sights, sounds, and stories with you! Main Street Theater: (Sound Design) 26 Miles, Permanent Collection, The Real Inspector Hound, Darwin In Malibu, The Hard Problem, Copenhagen, (Set Design) Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter, (Actor) Mother of the Maid; La Fille du Laitier: (Stage Manager) Macbeth Muet; Prague Shakespeare Company: (Audio Engineer) An Iliad, Much Ado About Nothing; Tardigrade Theater Company: (Actor/Sound Design) Purple, A Dragon’s Tale; Doorman Actors Lab: (Sound Design) Mud; Noir Dame Productions: (Sound Design) Over Here Over There, War of the Worlds; Galveston College: (Sound Design) The Invisible Man; Lone Star College Montgomery: (Audio Engineer) A Year with Frog and Toad; San Jacinto College South: (Actor/Sound Design) The Grey Zone, Wonder of the World, Woyzeck, Cabaret. He would like to thank Sheleigh Carmichael for helping so many people find their voice.

Zack Varela (Stage Manager)

Zack Varela is thrilled to join Thunderclap Productions for the inception of “Herman & Melville,” a project highlighting vital Queer history. Esteemed for his role as the Production Stage Manager for Opera in the Heights, Zack brings his stage management expertise to this important work. With a rich background in directing, acting, and lighting design, Zack ensures meticulous and vibrant stage orchestration. Notable credits include “It’s a Wonderful Life” and “West Side Story” at Pasadena Little Theatre, and “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” at Main Street Theatre Kids on Stage. Zack is excited to contribute to this groundbreaking production.

Additional Credits

Aaron Alon Web Design, LLC

Web Design

Rachael Burke

Graphic Design