COMPANY MEMBERS

(in Alphabetical Order)

JUDITH ACKERMAN, SINGER RAGING GRANNIES

Judith Ackerman wants to die laughing--which is why she likes to tell a lot of jokes and try to get people around her to laugh and to have fun. She has an extensive background in theater and dance. Inspired and encourgaged  by Jose Limon, Merce Cunningham and Lucas Hoving she has created her own dance compositions over the years. Her Off-Broadway acting credits include her favorite role: Lady Bracknell in  The Importance of Being Earnest. She lived and worked in Israel doing avant-garde with Israeli artists and where she also started the women's movement in Tel Aviv.  After joining AFTRA , EQUITY and SAG,    she did a great deal of interesting background work.  In her singing career she did solo concerts.  She is an active member of several choral groups.  Although her favorite music is composed before 1800,  she is an active member of the Raging Grannies. She has had Broadway appearances in protestations of all kinds.


 

DAVID BRAGIN - SET and PROP DESIGNER, ACTOR

David is an Industrial Designer with over fifty years of practice. In addition to a career designing products and graphics, he has used his  skills to design and build sets and props for various theatre pieces. Most recently he has  became involved in theatre work, through a Meetup that James Williams started. In addition to reading plays, he has  helped with several productions that James produced, including The Curse of the Starving Class, and also acting in his Shakespeare's Henry IV, Part 1. His  graphic design work has included many anti-war and anti-imperialist posters. His  work is in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian and the Imperial War Museum in London. He is a  founding member of Rising Together Guerilla Theatre, where he has  played a dragon in several productions. Hi is also active with the New York Chapter of Jewish Voice for Peace.

ELLEN DAVIDSON - PHOTOGRAPHER

Ellen Davidson began her adult working life at the Guardian Radical Newsweekly in New York in 1979 and has worked in activist and progressive print media ever since. Today she works with The Indypendent, New York's Indymedia paper, and Peace & Planet News/peaceandplanetnews.org, a print and online publication of New York City Veterans For Peace. She is a photojournalist who has traveled to Palestine, Jeju Island in Korea, Okinawa, Standing Rock, Ireland, and Ferguson, among other places, to stand against occupation and racism and to protest U.S. bases and warmaking around the world. You can find her photography at stopthesewars.org/ellen-davidson.


NYDIA LEAF - ACTOR, DRAMATURGE

Starting in 1952 she first did theatre production work at the White Barn Theatre in Westport, CT and concluded in 1963 as an agent at William Morris, whereupon she had to choose between work and family. 
 

As a play reader she  worked for producers and playwrights - Walter Fried (Time of the Cuckoo; Ladies of the Corridor); Irene Selznick (The Chalk Garden), Clinton Wilder (The Tender Trap) and George Axelrod (Visit to a Small Planet)   I typed reviews by Harold Clurman (The Nation) and Kenneth Tynan (The New Yorker) and for George Axelrod screenplays (Breakfast at Tiffany's; Manchurian Candidate). She  was Production Assistant to George Axelrod. directing Harry Kurnitz' Once More With Feeling, a time when shows did tryouts in other cities to refine productions before opening on Broadway.
 
At William Morris in 1962 Neil Simon was just transitioning from TV and Edward Albee had only written two one-act plays. Clinton Wilder and Richard Barr produced his "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" and the rest is history.
 
From the time of Ancient Greece, theatre has remained the best art form to join people in a search for the meaning of life - whether in satire and comedy or in drama and tragedy.  Our troubled world needs the empathy and compassion that comes from a living connection with audiences.


 

LINDA NOVENSKI - PHOTOGRAPHER

Linda was born and grew up in Detroit, MI. Her first truly adult act was to marry her high school sweetheart to keep him from being drafted and sent to Vięt Nam, in 1965. When married men were fair game for the draft, in 1967, but not fathers, she  had a baby. (She thinks that qualifies her as an Associate Member of Veterans for Peace.) Raising her daughter alone from the age of 2, they moved to Seattle where she helped found the Women's Clinic at Country Doctor, a free clinic, and earned her certification in Surgical Technology. She worked for 10 years, mainly with neurosurgeons at Group Health Hospital. With them she assisted in pioneering work on awake craniotomies, and travelled to El Salvador during the civil war there to aid earthquake victims, in 1986. After that she moved to France, became a photographer (studied with Pat Bogner) and returned to the States 7 years later. Subsequently she became a preschool teacher in Seattle, and union organizer. She was an active pacifist in the streets against the WTO, and organized Downtown Neighbors for Peace against the imminent Iraq war in 2003. Shortly after moving to NYC in 2008, she joined the Action for Justice committee at Community Church Unitarian Universalist, and then Resistance Cinema which continues to this day.
 


 


Photo by Sherry Rubel Photography

TRUDY SILVER - JAZZ PIANIST, COMPOSER, ACTOR

Trudy Silver is a founding member of Rising Together Guerrilla Theater. She is a jazz pianist and composer who has recorded and performed internationally with many great musicians including Makanda Ken McIntyre, Newman Baker, Bill Lowe, Scottie Davis and Kentucky Parkis to name a few, Trudy's Web Site. She taught music and Spanish in NYC public schools for over 30 years and has created hundreds of dramatic, vocal and instrumental performances since 1985. She is thrilled to combine her social justice work in performance and is a member of NY War Resisters League, NYC Raging Grannies, Jewish Voice For Peace, Women in Black Freedom for Palestinians, Rise and Resist and United Against War and Militarism. Most recently, as a dragon/singer/dancer she was arrested on August 2, 2022 at the UN  for blocking the entrance to the US Mission. The protest was about US refusal to sign onto the Nuclear Weapon Ban Treaty that has become international law. She has been arrested numerous times in protests since 1975 bringing attention to the criminality of wars, nuclear weapons, incarceration of political prisoners and inhuman conditions at Rikers Island and Guantanamo.                                                                 

 

JAMES WILLIAMS - ACTOR, DIRECTOR

James is a Founding Member of Rising Together Guerrilla Theater. Actor, Dancer, Director, Producer. Since moving to New York in 1972, he as acted Off-Broadway at the Provincetown Playhouse, The Cultural Project and Synchronicity Space. He has performed Off-Off Broadway with Austin Pendelton and Roger Hendricks Simon. He played the lead role of Thomas Jefferson opposite Glenn Close in a Regional Theater production of The Common Glory in Williamsburg Virginia and the lead role of Ethan Allen in Vermont Lives at the Dorset Theater in Dorset Vermont. From experimental theater to Shakespeare, Beckett and beyond, he has performed in over 50 plays and appeared in Television and Film . He has danced with The American Modern Dance Theater and Arthur Halls's People to People Dance Company. He is the  Producer and Artistic Director of AdLib Theater in Brooklyn. He has produced many plays Off-Off Broadway including Who;s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Henry IV, Part 1, The Three Sisters, Maids of Honor, Curse of the Starving Class and The Portrait with Rutanya Alda, Caitlin O'Heaney, June Stein and Roger Hendricks Simon. He is a certified teacher in the Nia Technique (Nia New York Web Site.) He is married to Ruth Joseph and has 3 children, 6 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren. He served in the USMC from 1960-1966 and is a proud member of  both the Vietnam Veterans Against the War and Veterans for Peace, Chapter 34 NYC. He stood proud with the Lakota at Standing Rock  in their stand against the Dakota Access Pipe Line and the Ramapough  in the their defense of their tribal land at Sweetwater Prayer Camp. He lives on Lenape Tribal Land in Brooklyn, NY.  More about James: James Theater and Dance Resumes

zool (PAUL HARRIS ZULKOWITZ) - PRODUCER, ACTOR

zool is an artist, activist, and producer. A member of the Directors Guild of America, he has worked in every production capacity on over 100 Hollywood-on-Hudson films, videos and television shows with directors including Peter Bogdanovich, Francis Ford Coppola, Jonathan Demme, Rob Reiner, Barbra Streisand and Woody Allen. He is a co-writer of the 8-episode screenplay “Buster & Fatty” (busterandfatty.com) and producer of the art documentary “Not Your Raging Granny” (in pre-production).

A lifelong antiwar, eco-social and human rights activist, zool has worked with groups ranging from Assange Defense, Codepink, and the Green Party to Jews Against The Occupation, the Mumia Coalition, and Veterans For Peace. He is an organizer with Rising Together, a coalition building group linking the issues of supremacy, inequity, militarism and sustainability. He is a founding member of the Rising Together Guerrilla Theater and currently launching the Rising Together Sunday Salon at the 5C Cafe & Cultural Center on Loisaida Avenue in New York City (risingtogether.info).