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Jennifer Decker

Jennifer Decker

Jennifer is the Artistic Director and co-founder of Mildred’s Umbrella Theater Company. She has dedicated herself for the last decade to Independent theatre in Houston. Mildred’s projects include - AS DIRECTOR: Carnival Round the Central Figure, The Marriage of Bette and Boo, Kama Sutra, Dark Matter, Triptych, A Murder of Crows; AS ACTOR: Eros: A Circus (acrobat), Things Being at the Worst (Puttenesca), Tomorrow Morning (Claire), Mac Wellman’s Dracula (Vampirette), [sic] (Babbette), A Long History of Neglect (Justine), One Flea Spare (Darcy), Rot (Claire), Night of the Giant (Clara), Under the Big, Dark Sky (Mother), Dead Man’s Cell Phone (Jean), and Kimberly Akimbo (Patty). In the last few years, she has also worked as actor, director, producer or advisor with many other independent Houston theatres, including dos chicas, Fan Factory, The Landing Theatre, Thunderclap Productions, Wordsmyth Theatre, The Nova Arts Project, Unhinged Productions, the national reading of The Laramie Project: 10 years Later, and others. She has an MLA in English and an MLA in Drama from St. Thomas University. Her writing has been published in Laurels and the Allegheny Review. She also teaches English at Houston Community College. She received a ‘BEST OF HOUSTON’ Nomination in the Houston Press in 2007 for Best Actress, and a nomination for Best Artistic Director in the 2012 Houston Theatre Awards. Jennifer was recently featured in the Houston Press's 100 Creatives.


John Harvey
John Harvey

John Harvey is co-founder of Mildred’s Umbrella, and the writer of several of our plays: Kama Sutra, Eros: A Circus, Things Being at the Worst, Tomorrow Morning, Hotel Pasiphae, Needful Creatures, Night of the Giant, Under the Big, Dark Sky and Rot. A graduate of University of Houston’s Creative Writing Program, his poems have appeared in such journals as Gulf Coast, Whiskey Island, and XCP. Harvey has collaborated with local writers in performance-art shows at the Art Car Ball and the Menil Collection and made his acting debut in December 2003, in a dos chicas theater commune production of Immaculate Contraception/Sadomasochistic Christmas. He also played Inspector Viper in Mildred’s Umbrella’s Tomorrow Morning, and Jonathan Harker in Mac Wellman’s Dracula. He is Director of the Center for Creative Work at The University of Houston Honors College.


Karen Schlag
Karen Schlag

Karen is Artistic Director for the Mildred’s Umbrella Children’s Outreach Program and has performed for the company in shows such as Cuckoos (Beatrice), Last Easter (June), Murder of Crows (Nella), Notions of Right and Wrong (Annabelle, Mother), Rot (puppeteer/shadow), Dark Matter (Mary Jones) and Mac Wellman’s Dracula (Vampirette). Some of Karen’s other theatre work includes Sylvia (Kate) and It’s a Wonderful Life – A Live Radio Play (Lana Sherwood) for Texas Repertory Theatre; Romeo and Juliet (Nurse) for Phoenix INC Theatre Company; The Tamarie Cooper Show (ensemble) with Catastrophic Theatre; Twelfth Night (Viola) with the Shakespeare-By-The-Book Festival; A Doll’s House (Nora) and Eleemosynary (Echo) at Company Onstage; and Loplop Presents Loplop (Frida) performed at Obsidian Art Space. Karen can also be seen in the Houston films Jacob (Lucky Chucky Productions), The Disappointed Sniper (Privitera Productions), Brushing Death (City Cyclone Entertainment, LLC) and Bitters and Other Natural Remedies (Cinema Overdrive). Some of Karen’s directing credits include Lady and the Tyger for Mildred’s Museum of the Dysfunction (2010), Charlotte’s Web and Aladdin, both at Company Onstage and The Three Lives of Marion with Wordsmyth Theater. Karen is a Communications lecturer at the University of Houston-Downtown, a member of the Houston-area Actor’s Gym and a founding member of Wordsmyth Theater.


Michelle Edwards
Michelle Edwards

Michelle Edwards is Associate Artistic Director for Mildred’s Umbrella Theater Company. She has been working within the Houston theatre community for over 20 years as an actor, teacher, director and producer. Her Mildred’s debut was in October of 2003 in Things Being at the Worst as The Duchess. Other Mildred’s roles include: By the Bog of Cats as Hester Swane, Hotel Pasiphae as Pasiphae, and Triptych as Pauline. She also directed Kama Sutra and Sic and worked alongside Jennifer Decker as Co-Managing Artistic Director from 2003-2006. She has a BA in Theatre from The University of Houston and a MFA from the University of Montana. She has worked with the Alley Theatre, Theatre Jeune Lune, The Montana Repertory, Montana Actors’ Theatre, Infernal Bridegroom Productions, The Atomic Café, The Houston Children’s Theatre Festival and The Houston Shakepeare Festival. She has lived, worked and studied abroad in Australia, England and Russia. Stage Credits include: Medea as the title role, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof as Mae ( national tour), Tartuffe as Elmire, Life Xs 3 as Inez, Macbeth as Witch, Big Love as Bella and Eleanor, Richard III as The Duchess, A Midsummer Night’s Dream as Titania, and Our Lady of 121st Street as Sonia, among others.


Craig Trauschke
Craig Trauschke

Craig is Technical Director for Mildred’s Umbrella Theater Company. He has worked in theatres all over Houston as a Stage Manager, running crew, light operator, sound operator and spotlight operator. Venues include University of Houston, Masquerade Theatre and Zilkha Hall at the Hobby Center. He has work with Mildred’s Umbrella since 2009 in productions such as The Third Side, Last Easter, Margo Veil, and Museum of Dysfunction II and III.


Christie Guidry Stryk
Christie Guidry Stryk

Christie is Marketing Manager for Mildred’s Umbrella Theater Company. She holds a BA in Theatre from the University of St. Thomas. Theatre credits include: Mac Wellman’s Dracula (Mina), By the Bog of Cats (Caroline Cassidy), 365 Days/365 Plays, Dark Matter (Andromeda) for Mildred’s Umbrella Theater; A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Helena), King Henry V (Princess Katherine), The Merry Wives of Windsor (Anne Page), Macbeth (Lady Macduff) for Shakespeare-By-the-Book Festival; Nunsense II (Sr. Leo) for Playhouse 90; ...for those who live in cities (Lover) for dos chicas theatre commune; Jungalbook (Sherakhan), Dancing at Lughnasa (Christina), Ruthless! The Musical (Louise Lerman), Diana of Dobsons (Miss Jay), Picnic (Madge Owens) for University of St. Thomas; Private Eyes (Cory), Defying Gravity (Elizabeth), All In the Timing (Betty) for Annex Theatre. Film credits: Timmy the Greeting Card Guy (Crystal) for Y-guy Productions; Dead of Knight for Toxic Monkey Productions. Commercial Credits: Wal-Mart, Spokeswoman for Matrix Worldwide. Christie has also done scenic painting for Mildred’s Umbrella Theatre, Unhinged Productions, Annex Theatre, University of St. Thomas, Playhouse 90, and Ft. Bend Theatre.


Ashley Allison

Ashley Allison

Ashley has worked with Mildred’s Umbrella in several shows including Margo Veil, Lonely Odd Creatures and Alice and the Underground, which won the audience choice award at the Freneticore Fringe Festival. Ashley has also worked with Nova Arts Project in The Bacchae and Gate of Heaven. She would like to thank her boyfriend for all his support and writing her bio. Ashley is also featured in the Mildred's Umbrella pin up calendar.


Rebecca Ayres

Rebecca Ayres

Rebecca has worked with Houston arts organizations since 2003. Highlights include: Stage Manager - Speeding Motorcycle (2006, IBP), Hotel Play (2004, IBP); Set Designer - Murder of Crows (Mildred's Umbrella, 2008), Notions of Right and Wrong (Mildred’s Umbrella, 2011); Resident Technician/House Manager - Diverseworks ArtSpace (2006-2008). She holds a B.A. in Anthropology from New York University.

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Mildred’s Umbrella Theater Company | 3201 Allen Parkway, Suite 150 | Houston, TX 77019 | info@mildredsumbrella.com