Stupid F**king Bird Program

Stupid Fucking Bird

Written by Aaron Posner
Sort of adapted from The Seagull by Anton Chekhov
Directed by Susan Dalian
April 20 - 22, 27 - 29 at 7:30pm
April 23 at 2:30pm
In the State Playhouse at Cal State LA
CONTENT WARNING: The play depicts brief moments of sexual content, references and depiction of suicide and mental illness, references of child loss, gun shot and the use of a stage gun. 


Conrad  •  Steven Gonzalez

Dev  •  Bryan Vargas

Mash  •  Olive Lalli

Nina  •  Naircy Lechuga

Emma Arkadina  •  Rebecca Silberman

Doyle Trigorin  •  James Feuer

Dr. Eugene Sorn  •  Hakop Mkhsian

Director  •  Susan Dalian

Scenic Designer  •  Alyssa Armas

Lighting Designer  •  Karyn D. Lawrence

Costume Designer  •  Jocelyn Tamayo

Sound Designer  •  Jane McKeever

Intimacy Coordinator  •  Carly DW Bones

Music Director  •  Roberto Alcaraz

Props Coordinator  •  Emma Schreil  

Stage Manager  •  Jolana Villarreal

Assistant Stage Manager  •  Joy Diaz

Assistant Stage Manager  •  Lenia Shen

Assistant Director  •  Sophia Hernandez

Assistant Sound Designer  •  Rudy Zazueta

Dramaturgs  •  Jonathan Acosta, Emily Moreno

Light Board Operator  •  Erica Rogers

Sound Board Operator  •  Callie Luong

Deck Crew  •  Abelardo Hernandez, Evelyn Zheng

Wardrobe/Hair & Makeup  •  Kimberly Diaz, Eileen Herrera, Yvonne Rubio

Assistant Technical Director  •  Andres Giraldo

Carpentry Lead  •  Brianna Sandoval

Scenic Charge  •  Alyssa Armas

Production Assistant, Costume Shop  •  Stephen Gonzalez

Production Assistant, TAD Office  •  Montgomery King

Scenic Construction, Props Artisans, & Painters  •  Students of TA 3000

Faculty Technical Director  •  Daniel Czypinski

Faculty Design Mentors  •  Arnold Bueso, Karyn D. Lawrence

Faculty Stage Management Mentor  •  Morgan Zupanski

Faculty Vocal Coach  •  Roberto Alcaraz

Faculty Dramaturg Mentor  •  Dr. Carolyn Dunn

Faculty Production Manager  •  Meredith Greenburg

Costume Shop Supervisor  •  Bruce Zwinge

Electrics Shop Supervisor  •  Tim Jones

Scene Shop Supervisor  •  Mark Russell

Administrative Support Coordinator  •  Laura Dickinson-Turner

Arts & Letters College Safety Specialist and Technical Director  •  Elizabeth Pietzrak

Arts & Letters Audio Engineer  •  Rico Garcia


When I first read Aaron Posner’s play Stupid Fucking Bird, it reminded me of the plays of early twentieth-century Italian novelist and playwright Luigi Pirandello. Pirandello was a Nobel Prize-winning author whose plays are often considered precursors of the Theatre of the Absurd movement made popular by Samuel Beckett and Eugéne Ionesco. The play of Pirandello's that came to mind was Six Characters in Search of an Author, which I was introduced to while studying as an undergraduate theater major. Both Posner and Pirandello’s plays explore the themes of the relationship of writers with their work and the characters they create, and the audiences’ relationship with “the theater”. The plays are both set against the background of an absurdist meta-theatricality, taking huge risks, and inviting the “breaking of the fourth wall” into the proscenium theater space of the modern world in their respective times. Aaron Posner’s playwrighting is a marvelously witty, acerbic, passionate, dark, and heartbreaking adaptation of Chekhov’s play. He captures the very best from the original text and interjects the perfect balance of humor and tragedy. He allows us, the artists and designers, the freedom in his script to explore the limits by literally telling us in the stage directions, “You can do it this way, say it this way or not”, leaving it open to the interpretation of the ensemble. It has been my absolute pleasure working with the cast, designers, and faculty at Cal State LA to find our way through this play about love and all the crazy, wonderful, and painful things we do for it. 
—Susan Dalian


Aaron Posner is an award-winning director, teacher, and playwright. He is best known for his work with classic Western theatre literature, such as Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, and various works of Anton Chekov, including Uncle Vanya, Three Sisters, and of course, The Seagull. Posner also adapted Chaim Potok’s The Chosen for stage, and he sees his work as a bridge between translation and adaptation of canonical Western works, bringing them to modern times for a new audience.

Stupid Fucking Bird is a contemporary adaptation of Anton Chekhov's 1896 play The Seagull. Posner's play is about a young playwright who is trying to contradict the art that is being produced by his mother’s generation and a young, attractive actress competing with an aging Hollywood star for the attention and affection of a well-known author. The play examines themes of failed relationships, love, maturity, art, and reality.

Posner's source material for Stupid Fucking Bird, Chekhov's The Seagull, borders on observational thought on the purpose of one’s own life with a rather morbid belief of impending death of life, metaphorically and literally.  Chekhov's play is set in the Russian countryside towards the end of the 19th century, where a troubled playwright, Konstantin, is trying to win the love of his life with the production of his very own play, which his beloved, Nina, will star in. But instead, Nina ends up going after a well-known author named Trigorin, who is also the sometimes lover of Konstantin’s mother, the famous theater actress (and narrow-minded diva) Irina Arkadina.

The Seagull explores the innermost consciousness of being an artist as well as the struggles and failings of fulfilling life as an artist in love with art. Many of Chekhov's characters in The Seagull are artists who are unhappy in their lives. Some of them want love. Some want to succeed. Some want a genius for the arts. But none of them ever seem to find happiness. 

Posner's inspiration for choosing this work of classic Russian drama was due to his interest in flawed people doing the best they can and sometimes making the worst of an already complicated situation. Posner’s take on the human condition is one of folly; all of us struggle and while we attempt to right a difficulty, yet our human condition does not allow us to remedy our wrongs. We as human beings have flaws that make it impossible for us to see clearly and make our struggles better because of decisions we make.

Written by Emily Moreno and Jonathan Acosta

We would like to give special thanks to the following, without whose support this production could not have been possible:

  • Theatre Department at the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts - thank you for the use of your LED lights!
  • Jimmy Quang and the East Los Angeles College Costume Shop!


Headshot of actor Steven Gonzalez


Steven Gonzalez (Con) is a senior at Cal State LA, majoring in Theatre Arts and Dance, with an option in Performance. This is Steven’s sixth production with Cal State LA. Steven’s favorite roles on stage include Joey Faustino in Los Faustinos, Beadle Bamford in Sweeney Todd, and Officer Barrel in Urinetown. Steven is ready to end his time at Cal State LA with such an amazing role and play. Steven would like to thank his friends and family for always supporting him and pushing him to be his best self.

Headshot of actor Olive Lalli


Olive Lalli (Mash) is a transfer student from Citrus College and is so grateful to be pursing her B.A. in Theatre at Cal State LA. Some favorite past roles include: Fastrada in Pippin (Irene Ryan nominee), Cinderella's Mother/Granny/Giant in Into The Woods, Shrek’s Mom/Mama Bear in Shrek the Musical, Evilene in The Wiz and Wanda in Durang Durang. Olive is thrilled to be a part of this amazing show with this amazing cast. Don’t judge.

Headshot of actor Naircy Lechuga


Naircy Lechuga (Nina) is a senior at Cal State LA majoring in Theatre Arts with an option in Performance. This is Naircy’s second production with Cal State LA. Some of Naircy’s previous roles include, a Vampire in Old Blood (Cal State LA), Boochie in Den of Thieves (Ghostlight Theatre Co.) and Alice in You Can’t Take It With You (Victor Valley College). Naircy would like to thank her friends and family for supporting her through her last two years of Undergrad.

Headshot of actor Rebecca Silberman


Rebecca Silberman (Emma) is earning her MFA in Theater, Film, and Television/Acting Option. This is her first production with Cal State LA, and she is very excited to perform with this talented cast.  Productions around Los Angeles include Gypsy, Lost in Yonkers, Vanya, Sonia, Masha, and Spike, among others. Rebecca is a proud member of RAW Acting Studio with Guy Camilleri.

Headshot of actor James Feuer


James Feuer (Trigorin) is grateful to return to the home of his MFA for this production and has thoroughly enjoyed working with everyone. Theater: American Buffalo at Deaf West with Oscar Winner, Troy Kotsur, and Paul Raci; Theatre Row; Accomplice NY (Prod. Neil Patrick Harris); C Venues, Edinburgh; Drayton Court, London; New York Philomusica. TV: A Good Cop (Recurring Role) Clinton; His Struggle with Dirt- BBC (Dir. Armando Iannucci); A Crime to Remember; Scorned: Love Kills; My Crazy Love. Film: Antonio in Wonderland; Zhou Yu & #39’s Train Trailer. Training: CSULA; Drama Studio London; BESG Cambridge University; Kenyon College (Paul Newman Prize). James is represented by The Park Agency for commercials and is currently seeking a theatrical agent.

Headshot of actor Hakop Mkhsian


Hakop Mkhsian (Sorn) is a senior at Cal State LA. He is a transfer student from East Los Angeles College where he had a play he wrote, Asylum, performed there, and earned his AA from. He was most recently seen in productions at the Garry Marshall Theatre and at The Actors' Gang. He is a big fan of potatoes due to their versatility.


Headshot of director Susan Dalian


Susan Dalian (Director) is currently the Associate Artistic Director at PlayPenn New Play Development in Philadelphia. She recently directed two staged readings with Lower Depth Theater’s Cycle of Poverty New Play Festival at A Noise Within. Last winter she directed Venus in Fur at The Pico Theater starring Malcolm Barrett and Cloie Wyatt Taylor. Recent staged reading projects Susan has directed include: Ricardo Pérez González’ play Mother of God (Echo Theater Company’s 2022 Playwrights LAB), Waiting by Aja Houston (Inkwell Theatre Development Lab), Iseult et Tristan by Pia Wilson (La Mama, NY/IAMA, LA), How To Raise a Freeman by Zakiyyah Alexander (AMMO Theatre), Breaking Barriers by Katrina D. RiChard (USC’s New Works Festival), and Villains by Marq Ewing (LA Writer’s Center). Other new works directing projects: AMMO Theatre Company- Token by Bernardo Cubria, The Honeycomb Theory by Garrett Mercer, A Bag Full of Stars by Dionna Michelle; Inkwell Theater Development Lab- Broken by Aaron Braxton; MACH 33: Cal Tech w/Pasadena Playhouse Lie After Lie After Lie by Stephen Dierkes. She directed virtual performances of Troilus and Cressida, Henry VI Part 2 and Richard III for Shakespeare Santa Cruz’ Undiscovered Shakespeare Series, 2020 & 2021. Susan was Resident Director at Sierra Classic Theatre from 2014-2018: Macbeth, As You Like It, Outside Mullingar, The Merchant of Venice, The Two Gentlemen of Verona, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. She also directed The Importance of Being Earnest at Mammoth Lakes Repertory Theatre. Susan is an Alumnus of Directors Lab West 2019, holds a BFA from Boston University, and is a graduate of Baltimore School for the Arts.

Headshot of costume designer Jocelyn Tamayo


Jocelyn Tamayo (Costume Designer) is currently pursuing a BA in Costume Design and Theatre Management at Cal State LA. Some of her credits include Keely and Du (Cal State LA), ELACtricity (ELAC), Stiletto and Steel (Hollywood Fringe - Hudson Theater). Jocelyn has received awards for her work, including the Regional Costume Design Award from the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival for her work in Mojada (ELAC). She is currently a member of the Student Advisory Board for KCACTF as the region’s social media manager and is also a member of the Kennedy Center National Student Leadership Council. Given the changing times, she is doing what she can to make the best out of every situation and believes it is great to join like-minded artists.

Headshot of intimacy coordinator Carly DW Bones


Carly DW Bones (Intimacy Director) is a theatre director, intimacy director/coordinator, sex educator, facilitator and thespomancer (theatre witch). She creates at the intersections of performance, sexuality, gender, community, trauma-sensitivity and social justice. Carly created and directed at the feminist theatre ensemble, The Illyrian Players, from 2011-2019. They have also directed at: Coin & Ghost, The Echo, EST LA, Inkwell Theater, Rogue Artists Ensemble, The Vagrancy. She works as a freelance intimacy director and educator in the Los Angeles area for theatre companies A Noise Within, Antaeus, Coeurage, Coin & Ghost, EST LA, Ghost Road, IAMA, The Road, StarKid, Son of Semele and university theatre programs Cal Lutheran University, Cal State LA, Occidental College, UCLA, USC, Pomona College. Connect with Carly: [email protected] and

Headshot of stage manager Jolana Villarreal


Jolana Villarreal (Stage Manager) is a 3rd year Theatre Design & Production Major at Cal State LA. She has been involved in many projects since middle school. Credits for stage management include: The Greatest Christmas Pageant Ever (Valley Oaks Charter School), The Grinch who Stole Christmas (Valley Oaks Charter School), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Valley Oaks Charter School), The Wizard of Oz (Valley Oaks Charter School), Student Directed One Acts (Valley Oaks High School), Soledad (Cal State LA), Stupid Fucking Bird (Cal State LA). Jolana plans to make a career in stage management and hopes to one day stage manage the show that inspired her to pursue this career. 

Headshot of assistant stage manager Jiayuan Shen


Jiayuan (Lenia) Shen (Assistant Stage Manager) is a third-year MFA student in Television, Film, and Theater program at Cal State LA. She got her BA in screenwriting from Communication University of Zhejiang, China. She is now an LA-based screenwriter, playwright, and narrative designer for video games. Jiayuan has written multiple scripts, but this is her first time working in a theater production team. She is grateful for this opportunity to explore a new world and would like to thank the amazing team and lovely theater department.

Headshot of actor Sophia Hernández


Sophia Hernández (Assistant Director) is a 1st year MFA student in the Theater, Film, and Television department at Cal State LA. While studying the acting track, Sophia also has a passion for writing and directing. Stupid Fucking Bird is her first main stage production serving as an assistant director. As always, she would like to thank her parents for their support.

Headshot of dramaturg Emily Moreno


Emily Moreno (Dramaturg) is a graduating student earning her B.A degree in Theatre Arts; her concentration is in playwriting and dramaturgy.  Emily plans to make a career in playwriting, Dramaturgy, acting, and storytelling. Her goal is to create a platform and write plays that speak about BIPOC traumas and stories.  Her upcoming play is called Justice Behind the Walls which talks about the cracks in the justice system within the men’s prison and how justice isn’t always served in low income and communities of color. Dramaturg credits include; Soledad (by Carolyn Dunn), Keely and Du by “Jane Martin”, References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot by Jose Rivera, and Stupid Fucking Bird by Aaron Posner. Emily would like to thank her mentor Dr. Carolyn Dunn for being a loving mother to her.


Headshot of wardrobe & makeup crew Kimberly Diaz


Kimberly Diaz (Wardrobe and Makeup) is a senior at Cal State LA majoring in Theatre with an option in Performance. This is Kimberly’s second time working on a production with Cal State LA. Kimberly plans to make a career in theater in the future. Kimberly would like to thank her mother for being her number one supporter. She would also like to thank Cal State LA for providing her with amazing opportunities and guidance throughout her years here.

Headshot of deck crew Evelyn Zheng

Evelyn Zheng

Evelyn Zheng (Deck Crew) is a 22-year-old Art BA major with an option in fashion, fiber, and materials in Cal State LA. Evelyn will be helping out as a deck crew member in the play Stupid Fucking Bird. This is her first time working as a deck crew and being involved in theatre art.