Deafenstein Title Logo

Written by and directed by Anna Wood-Jacobowitz

A Mainstage Production from
The National Theatre of the Deaf

Streaming online from October 31 to November 15

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Deaf sisters Danielle and Gabrielle produce a film inspired by their favorite childhood tale, Frankenstein, but are faced with their division by language and identity. Expecting a story based in truth and history, Gabrielle is shocked when Danielle unveils her dark interpretation of the mad scientist and his creation, the Creature, and his fiancee Mabel. Ultimately, the sisters navigate healing from the community's traumas, as well as their own.

About the Author

Hailing from Maryland, Anna Wood-Jacobowitz considers herself devoted to two things in this world: storytelling and her love of animals. In the mornings as a child, she would recount the stories of her dreams to her family, and jot them down as play or movie ideas. When in high school, Anna grew her love of theatre when she wrote a stage adaptation of the Disney movie Frozen, and directed the school production. As a Gallaudet student, Anna has been involved with every theatrical production, either as an actor or as part of the production team. She also interned at Studio Theatre in Washington, D.C. as a casting intern. In 2020, her original script, Deafenstein, was chosen to be NTD’s Mainstage Production for the Oiol Festival, and has since been focused on the growth of the vision with every pivot along the way!

A collaboration between NTD, CDT, and Gallaudet University

A co-production of

With the generous support of three coproducers, art was able to thrive in the middle of a pandemic. National Theatre of the Deaf, Connecticut Deaf Theatre, and Gallaudet University Theatre Arts and Dance Program obtained approval from the Gallaudet Health Advisory group and the District of Columbia government to arrange an isolated bubble production environment for our actors, interns, and guest artists to stay on campus safely for 5 weeks. Designed to follow COVID-19 regulations and expectations emulated from professional theatre and film companies, we were able to bring Deafenstein to life on stage!

Performances begin streaming on Halloween

Running from October 31 to November 15.

Get your tickets today and experience the beginnings of an incredible story.

Buy Tickets Now

The cast & team of the Deafenstein bubble

Gabriel Romanauskas
Doctor/Uncle

Jazie Perry
Watson

Kimberly Gonzalez
Danielle

Sharon Castillo
Gabrielle

Anna Wood-Jacobowitz
Creature

Emily Johnson
Mabel/Mother

Ensemble Team

Ana Avalos
Communications Intern

Maryah Arzola
Wardrobe and Makeup Intern

Jalena Cochran
Assistant Stage Manager Intern

Emily Johnson
English Master Intern

Bryant Gonzalez
Marketing and Film Intern

Jocelyn Saravia
Design and Film Intern

Leslie Nevon Holden
Interpreting Intern

Victor Blanco
Interpreting Intern

Creative Team

Anna Wood-Jacobowitz
Director and Playwright

Alexandria Wailes
Associate Director and Choreographer

Kala Granger
Stage Manager

Jalena Cochran
Assistant Stage Manager

Nikolya Sereda
Costume Designer and NTD Producing Theatre Director

Annie Wiegand
Gallaudet Faculty Advisor and Lighting Designer

Jules Dameron
Director of Photography

Sarah Blocher
Set Designer and Carpenter

Norah Matthews
Master Electrician

Jason Dearing
Props Master

Ethan Sinnott
Theatre and Dance Program Director and Public Health and Safety Liaison

April Jackson
ASL Master

Bethany Gehman
Intimacy Director

Trent Harper
Voice Director

Tempest Stokes
Voice Actor 1

Teresa Dominick
Voice Actor 2

Meg Thorp
Voice Actor 3

Leslie Nevon Holden
Voice Actor 4

Daxter Slater
Projection Animator and Artist

Awet Moges
Projection Artist

Tosin Olufolabi
Sound Designer

Chase Chambers
Video Editor

Deafenstein Cast Group Photo

Great theatre is only as great as the team making it happen.

Where did it all begin?

Our original plan was to premiere our production in June of 2020 at the Oiol Festival in Washington DC, but the global pandemic had other plans. In the face of the COVID-19 crisis, NTD pivoted and continued to grow Deafenstein by transforming the stage to a virtual workshop!

A Pre-Pandemic Photoshoot

Before the pandemic brought the whole country to a standstill, we managed to establish an amazing show art photoshoot with an incredible team! With the expertise of deaf photographer Gideon Samara, deaf make-up artist Emily Kieffer, and deaf model Lyn Russell, we were able to bring the Deafenstein vision to life. With the power of blue make-up, prosthetics, and a touch of patience, an unforgettable image was born.

Thank you to the photoshoot team; we could not have done this without you!

Then the world changed…

Virtual Workshop

In June 2020, NTD pulled together a fantastic team of 12 talented artists who defied the constraints of the global pandemic and conducted the first workshop of Deafenstein, virtually! Without this creative team and cast and their dedication to pushing forward the work of our theatre, Deafenstein would not be where it is today.

After a three-week rehearsal period, the virtual workshop was recorded and edited, in preparation for its private release at our virtual fundraiser. With the support of our donors and NTD supporters, we were able to raise funds that made the next production of Deafenstein a reality!

Creative Team

Anna Wood-Jacobowitz Portrait

Anna Wood-Jacobowitz
Playwright

Alexandria Wailes
Director

Annie Wiegand
Consultant

Monique Holt
Dramaturg

Nikolya Sereda
Stage Manager

Readers

Andrew Morrill
Doctor/Uncle

Lauren Ridloff
Mabel

Chella Man
Creature

Phelan Conheady
Watson

Allison Friedman
Daniel

Sara Moore
Gabriel

Gideon Firl
VV/Stage Descriptions

A Virtual Celebration

In December of 2020, NTD established a virtual fundraiser to support the growth of this production. After sharing the fundraiser on our social media platforms, our goal was to reach $3K, and we were met with love from our supporters. Within the span of 4 days, we reached and exceeded our fundraiser goal! Thank you for your donations to support our mainstage production, we have not done it without you!

Support the Deafenstein journey!

All of the proceeds will be contributed to the growth of our theatrical production. We appreciate your everlasting support- none of this would be possible without you!

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