The Bonfire Makers

gather. create. transform.

THE ARTISTS

TIERRA ALLEN is passionate about strengthening community through live performance and bringing evocative, transformative, politically and socially responsive experiences to audiences. She has performed with New Conservatory Theatre Centre, Broadway by the Bay, Bay Area Children’s Theatre, Berkeley Playhouse, Woodminster Summer Musicals, the One Minute Play Festival at Z Space, and more. Recent credits include Suzannah in Jon Tracy's HAIR with Bay Area Musicals and originating the role of Babygirl in An OPEN LOVE LETTER to Black Fathers: A Choreopoem at the Black Choreographers Festival, Dance Brigade's Dance Mission D.I.R.T. (Dance In Revolting Times) Festival, and more. Tierra has taught theater at Alameda County Juvenile Hall and Boston’s City on a Hill Public Charter School. She holds a B.A. in Theater & Dance from Amherst College.

TIERRA ALLEN is passionate about strengthening community through live performance and bringing evocative, transformative, politically and socially responsive experiences to audiences. She has performed with New Conservatory Theatre Centre, Broadway by the Bay, Bay Area Children’s Theatre, Berkeley Playhouse, Woodminster Summer Musicals, the One Minute Play Festival at Z Space, and more. Recent credits include Suzannah in Jon Tracy's HAIR with Bay Area Musicals and originating the role of Babygirl in An OPEN LOVE LETTER to Black Fathers: A Choreopoem at the Black Choreographers Festival, Dance Brigade's Dance Mission D.I.R.T. (Dance In Revolting Times) Festival, and more. Tierra has taught theater at Alameda County Juvenile Hall and Boston’s City on a Hill Public Charter School. She holds a B.A. in Theater & Dance from Amherst College.

MELISSA KAITLYN CARTER  is proud to call The Bonfire Makers her creative home. Recent Bay Area credits: WE GO BOOM! (The Bonfire Makers), Blood Wedding (The Breadbox), HATCH (Joe Goode Annex), Hundred Days (Z Space), Crumble: Lay Me Down Justin Timberlake (The Breadbox), and Owners of Nothing (Transient Theater). B.F.A Acting: Boston University, 2012.

MELISSA KAITLYN CARTER  is proud to call The Bonfire Makers her creative home. Recent Bay Area credits: WE GO BOOM! (The Bonfire Makers), Blood Wedding (The Breadbox), HATCH (Joe Goode Annex), Hundred Days (Z Space), Crumble: Lay Me Down Justin Timberlake (The Breadbox), and Owners of Nothing (Transient Theater). B.F.A Acting: Boston University, 2012.

SONIA DECKER is an actor, theatre artist, activist, and native of the Bay Area. Recently she has worked with EchoTheatreSuitcase Project, Christine Marie and Artists, The Breadbox, Berkeley Rep, Theater Lunatico, BrickaBrack, Bread and Puppet Theater, and many more. When she is not creating political ensemble-devised theatre, she can be found hiking or working with children.  Sonia holds a B.F.A in Theatre Arts―Performance from Boston University.

SONIA DECKER is an actor, theatre artist, activist, and native of the Bay Area. Recently she has worked with EchoTheatreSuitcase Project, Christine Marie and Artists, The Breadbox, Berkeley Rep, Theater Lunatico, BrickaBrack, Bread and Puppet Theater, and many more. When she is not creating political ensemble-devised theatre, she can be found hiking or working with children.  Sonia holds a B.F.A in Theatre Arts―Performance from Boston University.

ZACH KOPCIAK is a deviser, producer, director, performer, and dramaturg specializing in non-traditional theatrical forms and contexts. Currently based in San Francisco where he has worked with First Person Travel, The Circus Center, Dirty Hands Ensemble, and RAWdance, he is passionate about work like The Bonfire Makers' that is relevant to the here and now. In the past Zach has also worked with Guerrilla Science in New York and D.C., Kid Cactus in Los Angeles, and with Secret Cinema, Shakespeare's Globe, The Box, and Enter Level5 in London, where he received his M.A. from the Central School of Speech and Drama. 

ZACH KOPCIAK is a deviser, producer, director, performer, and dramaturg specializing in non-traditional theatrical forms and contexts. Currently based in San Francisco where he has worked with First Person Travel, The Circus Center, Dirty Hands Ensemble, and RAWdance, he is passionate about work like The Bonfire Makers' that is relevant to the here and now. In the past Zach has also worked with Guerrilla Science in New York and D.C., Kid Cactus in Los Angeles, and with Secret Cinema, Shakespeare's Globe, The Box, and Enter Level5 in London, where he received his M.A. from the Central School of Speech and Drama. 

MAURICE ANDRÉ SAN-CHEZ is a company member of The Bonfire Makers and has a B.F.A. in Music Theatre from the University of Texas, El Paso. André is a teaching artist with Bay Area Children’s Theater, Berkeley Playhouse, and New Conservatory Theatre Center and has been working with youth since 2008―assistant directing, vocal coaching, workshopping, inspiring, and nurturing children’s love for the arts. Recent credits include James and the Giant Peach (with a tour to Shanghai, China in partnership with the Shanghai Children's Art Theatre), 5 Little Monkeys, and Knuffle Bunny with Bay Area Children’s Theatre; Carrie the Musical with Ray of Light Theatre; Hairspray and The Wiz with Berkeley Playhouse; and as various characters for the Youth Aware Educational Theatre program at New Conservatory Theatre Center. André's passion lies in doing theatre for social justice.

MAURICE ANDRÉ SAN-CHEZ is a company member of The Bonfire Makers and has a B.F.A. in Music Theatre from the University of Texas, El Paso. André is a teaching artist with Bay Area Children’s Theater, Berkeley Playhouse, and New Conservatory Theatre Center and has been working with youth since 2008―assistant directing, vocal coaching, workshopping, inspiring, and nurturing children’s love for the arts. Recent credits include James and the Giant Peach (with a tour to Shanghai, China in partnership with the Shanghai Children's Art Theatre), 5 Little Monkeys, and Knuffle Bunny with Bay Area Children’s Theatre; Carrie the Musical with Ray of Light Theatre; Hairspray and The Wiz with Berkeley Playhouse; and as various characters for the Youth Aware Educational Theatre program at New Conservatory Theatre Center. André's passion lies in doing theatre for social justice.

SANGO TAJIMA is an Oakland-based artist who grew up internationally in the U.S, Japan, Tanzania, Trinidad & Tobago, and Thailand. She is a collaborator of The Bonfire Makers, co-founder of a new producing ensemble Dirty Hands, and Associate Artist of Ragged Wing Ensemble. After receiving a B.F.A in Acting from the University of Michigan, she moved to the Bay to serve as the Artistic Direction Apprentice at Magic Theatre. There she assistant directed shows under Loretta Greco, Meredith McDonough, and Jon Tracy. As an actor she’s worked on various productions with Campo Santo, Cutting Ball Theater, Impact Theatre, Ragged Wing Ensemble, Bay Area Children's Theatre, and New Conservatory Theatre Center. Recent roles include Rosaura in Cutting Ball Theater’s Life is a Dream, Philipa in Impact Theatre’s Year of the Rooster, and Becky Lou in Campo Santo/ACT’s Holy Crime: Rock N Roll and Sam Shepard.

SANGO TAJIMA is an Oakland-based artist who grew up internationally in the U.S, Japan, Tanzania, Trinidad & Tobago, and Thailand. She is a collaborator of The Bonfire Makers, co-founder of a new producing ensemble Dirty Hands, and Associate Artist of Ragged Wing Ensemble. After receiving a B.F.A in Acting from the University of Michigan, she moved to the Bay to serve as the Artistic Direction Apprentice at Magic Theatre. There she assistant directed shows under Loretta Greco, Meredith McDonough, and Jon Tracy. As an actor she’s worked on various productions with Campo Santo, Cutting Ball Theater, Impact Theatre, Ragged Wing Ensemble, Bay Area Children's Theatre, and New Conservatory Theatre Center. Recent roles include Rosaura in Cutting Ball Theater’s Life is a Dream, Philipa in Impact Theatre’s Year of the Rooster, and Becky Lou in Campo Santo/ACT’s Holy Crime: Rock N Roll and Sam Shepard.

ALEX VAN GILS is a composer and bassist whose music is influenced by his love of classical music and jazz, and especially by his practice and study of Tibetan Buddhism under Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he studied composition with Professors Allen Anderson and Stephen Anderson. His piano solo Something Electric was the 2011 winner of the Emil and Ruth Beyer Composition Award, presented by the National Federation of Music Clubs. His orchestra work "cosmic dancer, blade of fire" was awarded the UC Davis Symphony Composition Award in 2013. Van Gils currently studies composition at the University of California, Davis, with Kurt Rohde. His dissertation work includes a new concerto for improvising saxophone written for Andrew Van Tassel and Dave Möschler's Awesöme Orchestra Collective.

ALEX VAN GILS is a composer and bassist whose music is influenced by his love of classical music and jazz, and especially by his practice and study of Tibetan Buddhism under Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he studied composition with Professors Allen Anderson and Stephen Anderson. His piano solo Something Electric was the 2011 winner of the Emil and Ruth Beyer Composition Award, presented by the National Federation of Music Clubs. His orchestra work "cosmic dancer, blade of fire" was awarded the UC Davis Symphony Composition Award in 2013. Van Gils currently studies composition at the University of California, Davis, with Kurt Rohde. His dissertation work includes a new concerto for improvising saxophone written for Andrew Van Tassel and Dave Möschler's Awesöme Orchestra Collective.

PHIL WONG is an actor, musician, and educator born and raised in The City of Oakland. Some of his favorite Bay Area theatrical endeavors include The Taming of the Shrew (Grumio - SF Shakes), Blood Wedding (Father, Old Woman - The Breadbox), The Rocky Horror Show (Eddie/Dr.Scott - Boxcar Theatre), Candide (Cacambo - Lamplighters), the world premiere of Do the Math by Emily Galvin (Overcast Theater), and Chinglish (Bing/Geming - Palo Alto Players). When he's not theatrimafyzing and making up words, Phil has been known to play his accordion and monkey around at the Athletic Playground. He also frequently attempts to make people giggle at stand-up comedy open mics and showcases around the Bay. 

PHIL WONG is an actor, musician, and educator born and raised in The City of Oakland. Some of his favorite Bay Area theatrical endeavors include The Taming of the Shrew (Grumio - SF Shakes), Blood Wedding (Father, Old Woman - The Breadbox), The Rocky Horror Show (Eddie/Dr.Scott - Boxcar Theatre), Candide (Cacambo - Lamplighters), the world premiere of Do the Math by Emily Galvin (Overcast Theater), and Chinglish (Bing/Geming - Palo Alto Players). When he's not theatrimafyzing and making up words, Phil has been known to play his accordion and monkey around at the Athletic Playground. He also frequently attempts to make people giggle at stand-up comedy open mics and showcases around the Bay.