Gabriella Graves (Julie/Lani) is a Texas born actor who discovered her love of acting at the age of 4 while performing at a Children’s Theatre in San Antonio, TX. At the age of 8 she had the opportunity to showcase her talent and was quickly signed with a manager and agent in Los Angeles. Gabi has been blessed with work from the moment she arrived in Hollywood. She can be heard as the voice of twins Mary Pat and Bianca on the hit Netflix animated show Spirit Riding Free, Wren, the loudmouth boss on Amazon’s Costume Quest, as well as lead roles as Sweetie in Disney Jr’s The Chicken Squad, and Maddy Yea in season 4 of Lego City Adventures. Gabriella also played Delaware on Disney Channel’s Coop and Cami Ask the World, Emily on ABC’s Alex, Inc, Young Peggy Carter on ABC’s Agent Carter and more . When she’s not working, Gabi’s passions are sharing music, playing guitar, ukulele and piano, writing stories, short films and music, reading every book she can get her hands on and working with her family’s nonprofit, I Am Courageous (IAmCourageous.net) Her motto for life is:
Dream Big~Be Kind~Love Always.
Gabi is so excited to be making her Hollywood Fringe debut in Can’t Hardly Date.
Twain Stevens (Ivan/Nigel) is completing his sophomore year at Pilgrim School. He has been in fourteen theatre productions including playing the lead roles in Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast. Last year he also stepped into producing when he produced It’s Who You Know at the Hollywood Fringe. Twain loves anime, video games and playing with his cat Cupcake.
Ashley McQueston (Director) is a recent graduate of the Theatre Academy at Los Angeles City College. She has acted and directed many shows at LACC. In the last two years she also starred in Happy Girl and Extraordinary at the Hollywood Fringe Festival. Recently Ashley flew to Maine to shoot the horror film, Get Away.
Chambers Stevens (Playwright) has a massive Prince Record Collection with over a thousand records, cassettes, CD’s and bootlegs. His obsession for The Purple One lead him to speak in Manchester England at the University of Manchester for the very first International Prince Conference. That was one wild week!
When he is not listening to Prince he is clogging, something he learned to do about the same time he learned to walk. He was awarded the prestigious “Fastest Clogger in Nashville” when he was just 15. Since then he has gained weight and slowed down, but he can still clog faster than anyone reading this program.
Chambers has written many plays that have been produced around the country.
As a director he is mainly known as the founding Artistic director of The Nashville Shakespeare Festival now in it’s 34th year.
Oh and Chambers still gets a tingling feeling every morning when he rolls over and looks at his wife.
JoAnn Sheppe (Production Designer) graduated from Hunter College in New York City with a BA in Film Production and a minor in Photography. After college, she worked as a photo editor and award-winning photographer. In addition to her traditional photography work, she collaborates frequently on short films with award-winning filmmaker Lisa Stock. JoAnn is married to screenwriter Robert Sheppe and they have two children -- Lucas (19) and Alexa (14).
Michelle & Justin Graves (Songwriters) Michelle and Justin are a married couple who have been writing and recording music together for 21 years. In 2012 they started their 501c3 nonprofit called I Am Courageous that creates uplifting entertainment to encourage seriously ill children. They DONATE all of their content to hospitals across the country. IAmCourageous.net Michelle and Justin had the best time working with Chambers on Can’t Hardly Date and hope this is the first of many projects they create together.
Gregory Crafts (Lighting Designer)
Gregory Crafts is an award-nominated and critically acclaimed LA-based lighting designer. He is the resident LD for all StageCrafts venues, and designer-in-residence at Theatre Unleashed, a small non-profit performing arts ensemble. Recent credits include The Right to Be a Bad Person (Riot Act Theatre), Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Jr. (Pilgrim School), and pretty much every show at studio/stage during the 2022 Hollywood Fringe Festival. Portfolio and contact info at GregoryCrafts.com
Happy to Be Me Productions (Producer) HTBMP is owned and operated by Gabriella Graves. This is their first theatrical production, but it won’t be the last. HTBMP is currently producing a short film as well as other exciting projects.
Special Thanks to…
The Stage Crafts for creating such an awesome space to work in, Emma Shannon for testing the script, Betsy for keeping us fat and happy, Linda Miller for igniting the fuse, Connie-Lynn for turning the lights on, Courtenay and Malcom for letting us borrow Ashley, Gigi & Hoot for always cheering me on, UP and AT, Mandi, Ella and Sawyer for traveling over 1,000 miles, April Baker for believing in me since I was 8 years old, my guy and gal pals (you know who you are), and all of YOU for giving us a reason to create and entertain!
Happy to Be Me Productions Presents
Can’t Hardly Date
Written by Chambers Stevens
Directed by Ashley McQueston
Performed by Gabriella Graves & Twain Stevens
Production Design by JoAnn Sheppe
Lighting Design by Greg Craft
Music by Michelle and Justin Graves
Notes from the Playwright
The first play I wrote was a romantic comedy. I was twenty and my college girlfriend had just stomped on my heart. She was a playwright and was about to enter a playwrighting competition in St. Louis. Upset about being dumped I decided to write a play and enter the same contest.
What did I write about?
That play Biff and Charlie went on to win the contest and it was eventually published by Samuel French, yet for some reason I have not written another romantic comedy since. Then last summer my wife decided to declare it “Romantic Comedy Summer” and started showing our son the classic romantic comedies When Harry Met Sally, Notting Hill, Jerry Maguire and Sleepless in Seattle. He loved them. So 40 years later I challenged myself to write another rom-com. I hope you enjoy Can’t Hardly Date.