Full Circle People
Who We Are
Full Circle People
Core ARTIST Leadership GROUP
Rick Shiomi (Co-artistic director)
Martha B. Johnson (Co-artistic director)
Lara Trujillo (Core Artistic Group member)
Stephanie Lein Walseth (Core Artistic Group member)
Ricardo Beaird (2020 - 21 Resident Core Artist)
General Manager and Production Associate
Full Circle Board of Directors
Michael Katz - President
Christina Ogata – Vice-President
Martha B. Johnson - Secretary
Ross Peterson – Treasurer
Moses Kariuki Ehlers
Martha J. Johnson
Full Circle Honorary Advisory Council
Harry Waters, Jr.
Rick Shiomi has been a leader in Asian American theater for over thirty-five years, as a playwright, director and artistic director. He has written over twenty plays, including the award-winning Yellow Fever, Rosie’s Café, Fire In The New World, Mask Dance and Journey of the Drum. His plays have been produced at Theater Mu, Pan Asian Repertory Theatre in NYC, Asian American Theater in San Francisco, East West Players in Los Angeles, Canasian Arts in Toronto, and Haisho Theatre in Tokyo.
He was a co-founder of Theater Mu and the artistic director there from 1993 to 2013. He has directed at Theater Mu, InterAct Theatre in Philadelphia and the Asian American Theater Company in San Francisco. For Mu he has directed Into The Woods and A Midsummer Night’s Dream set in Asia, The Mikado set in Edwardian England (with Skylark Opera) and Yellow Face at the Dowling Studio of the Guthrie Theater. He directed Caught by Christopher Chen and You For Me For You by Mia Chung for InterAct Theatre, receiving Barrymore Award recommendations as director for both. He most recently directed the hit production of Caught for Full Circle Theater at the Dowling Studio.
He was one of the founders of CAATA (Consortium of Asian American Theaters and Artists), has served on boards and panels for MRAC (Metropolitan Regional Arts Council), MSAB (Minnesota State Arts Board) and NEA and is presently an Artistic Associate at Park Square Theater in their new artistic leadership team. And his plays have been published by Temple University and Rutgers University Press.
He has received the Sally Ordway Irvine Award for Vision, the Ivey Award for Lifetime Achievement and the McKnight Distinguished Artist Award.
Martha B. Johnson
Martha B. Johnson Martha B. Johnson Martha B. Johnson began her Twin Cities career in the early 1980s with her co-founding/co-artistic directorship of 21st Street Players, a small, experimental theater company, where she collaborated on new works by poet Robert Bly and Japanese Noh master Akira Matsui. During this time she also taught acting for Guthrie Theater Outreach for several years. In 1988 she joined the theater faculty at Augsburg University where she taught classes, served as department chair, and directed over 30 productions, including area premieres of Anne Carson’s Antigonick and Nilo Cruz’s adaptation of Calderon’s Life is a Dream. She maintained a professional career while teaching, helping to co-found Theater Mu and serving there as core artistic group member for 21 years, collaborating with other theater artists as a director, dramaturg, consultant, and performer. And while at Mu she wrote Dipped in Love, directed by Jen Weir and produced by Mu at Mixed Blood Theater. Proud to be one of the co-founders of Full Circle Theater, she has served this company as co-artistic director, co-writer, dramaturg, assistant director (Theater: A Sacred Passage), and director (Glass & Lady M.) Outside of Full Circle, she has directed at New Native Theater, and her play Dipped in Love was co-produced by Full Circle and KinderSpace Theater in Tokyo (fall, 2019) in Japanese translation by Momoko Tanno. She holds a Ph.D. in theater from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she specialized in ancient Greek, traditional Japanese, and experimental European theater.
Lara Trujillo is a vocalist, actor and educator who performs on stage and in concert in various Twin Cities venues. She has appeared in several productions with the Minnesota Opera, The Gilbert & Sullivan Very Light Opera Company, Mu Performing Arts, History Theater, Bloomington Civic Theater and has appeared on stage with Ordway Center, Chanhassen Dinner Theater, Teatro del Pueblo, Minnesota Festival Theater, Theater Latte Da, 7th House Theater and Mill City Opera. Lara has also been featured in concert as a guest vocalist with the Bloomington Symphony, St Olaf Orchestra, Minneapolis Pops Orchestra, University of Mankato Symphonic Band, and has performed for special events with Guthrie Theater, Twin Cities Opera Guild, Schubert Club, First Readings Project, A Prairie Home Companion and Opera on Tap. In addition, Lara spent many years as a music educator/director in the public schools, churches, community theaters and as a private instructor.
Stephanie Lein Walseth
Stephanie Lein Walseth was one of the co-writers for Full Circle’s debut production of Theater: A Sacred Passage, one of the directors for 365 Days/365 Plays: A 2017 Remix, and the dramaturg for Under This Roof. As an actor, director, dramaturg, and stage manager, she has worked with Penumbra Theatre Company, Mu Performing Arts/Theater Mu, Sod House Theater, the Playwrights’ Center, Guthrie Theater, Theatre Unbound, Starting Gate Productions, Theater in the Round, Frank Theatre, the University of Minnesota, Native Voices at the Autry (CA), and Portland Stage Company (ME). Stephanie is also a theater educator and administrator whose work in the Twin Cities has included tenures with Penumbra, Mu, Mixed Blood Theatre, Ubuntu Theater Project (Oakland, CA), and Augsburg University, where she is an adjunct faculty member. She received her Ph.D. in Theatre Historiography from the University of Minnesota, and her research interests include the cultural poetics and politics of Native American, African American, and Asian American theatre, as well as theatre historiography, cultural studies, performance ethnography, critical and feminist pedagogies, and theatre for social change. She has recently taken on a new role at the Perpich Center for Arts Education as the Theater Education Specialist with the Professional Development and Resources team. In this capacity, she works with K-12 and college/university theater educators and directors across the state.
2020 -21 Resident Core Artist
Ricardo Beaird is a Twin Cities-based theatre practitioner and artist educator originally from Nashville, TN. His work is informed by the pursuit of healing through storytelling, the unfinished business of ghosts, and Beyoncé.
In addition to performing on the stages of Pangea World Theater, Park Square Theater, Red Eye Theater, and Ten Thousand Things Theater, Ricardo recently directed a production of Euripedes’ Medea, reimagined for Zoom.
As a playwright, he has also seen a number of his plays presented including Father Darling (an examination of queer sexuality and paternity) with Ambiance Theatre, SPOOK (a devised ritual highlighting the gifts and curses of black ancestry created in partnership with Suzanne Cross) with The Umbrella Collective, and Countdown (a dance party at the end of the world that explores weaponized nostalgia and collective anxiety, created with Megan Burns) through Red Eye Theatre’s New Works 4 Weeks Festival.
Currently, Ricardo is an I.D.E.A.L. (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Access, and Leadership) Center Professional Development Specialist at the Science Museum of Minnesota, supporting the design and facilitator of in-person and virtual professional development programs.
General Manager and Production Associate
Quinci Bachman is a theater artist and arts administrator in the Twin Cities. She graduated from Augsburg University where she received her B.A. in Theater Arts, trained in QLab and associated Apple software, and studied broadcast and online journalism/marketing. Since joining Full Circle Theater, first as an intern and now as General Manager, she has been instrumental to Full Circle’s administrative and marketing development and has created numerous graphic designs for the company’s use. Bachman is also a talented emerging theater artist in the area of sound design. She designed the sound for Full Circle’s first two productions: Theater: A Sacred Passage and 365 Days/365 Plays. Bachman has also stage-managed, designed lights, co-written scripts, and served as board operator. Most recently, she sound designed, stage managed and designed lights for Full Circle's 2019 Fringe Festival production of Glass & Lady M. She will be stage managing, sound designing and video editing Full Circle's upcoming virtually staged readings of The Empathy Project.
Full Circle Board of Directors
Michael Katz | Board President
Michael Katz is a Minneapolis attorney with thirty years’ experience in construction and corporate law. He is a graduate of the University of Minnesota and William Mitchell College of Law. He began his career in construction litigation, then moved to in-house practice, first with S.J. Groves & Sons Company, then with Ellerbe Becket. He is a life-long student of English and French literature, English drama and history. He is currently in private practice in downtown Minneapolis, representing clients in the design and construction industry.
Christina Ogata | Vice-President
Christina Ogata had a 30-year career as a labor attorney, and continues her work as a human relations activist, amateur musician and community participant. Christina puts some of these values and experience to work by being active in and giving to nonprofit arts organizations. She is a past-president and board member of COMPAS and a 30-year member of the St. Paul Civic Symphony, a group that just celebrated its 70th anniversary and is the oldest community orchestra in the Twin Cities area. Christina retired as General Counsel for Education Minnesota, a union that represents Minnesota’s public school teachers and other school district employees as well as the faculty of Minnesota’s two-year community and technical colleges. She is a graduate of Macalester College and the University of Minnesota Law School. She loves dancing merengue and salsa and attending arts performances of all kinds. She has a strong affinity for and experience with the Colombian-American and Japanese-American communities and cultures.
Ross Peterson | Board Treasurer
Ross Peterson is President and CEO of Multiventure Properties, Inc., a local Condominium and Townhome Association Management Company that he founded over 30 years ago. Ross was first introduced to Rick and Martha several years ago, through Mu Performing Arts. His appreciation and respect for their individual talents made his decision to accept a position on the Full Circle Theater Board an easy one. During his career, Ross has served in various capacities on multiple real estate related boards and committees. He has also worked with hundreds of Association Boards of Directors, providing daily management and accounting services. Ross will be responsible for the financial oversight of the project.
Martha B. Johnson | Secretary
Martha B. Johnson brings to Full Circle many years of administrative experience both from her serving as Chair of the Theater Arts Department at Augsburg University for several years and from her experience as Co-Artistic Director of 21st Street Players. In addition she served on the board of 21st Street Players for five years, and on the board of Mu Performing Arts for the first five years of its existence.
Rick Shiomi | Director
Rick Shiomi served on the board of Mu Performing Arts for twenty-one years, served on the board of CAATA (The Consortium of Asian American Theaters and Artists) from 2006 to 2014, and served on the board of MRAC for several years. He served on the board of The MN Theater Alliance for four years.
Moses Kariuki Ehlers | Director
Moses Kariuki Ehlers is the Marketing Manager at Fish and Richardson PC, where his knowledge of digital marketing’s power is helping attorneys maximize their online professional credibility, and the law firm define and achieve new brand goals. His background and experience across many digital marketing platforms enables him to keep everyone on the same path and heading toward identifiable marketing goals and objectives. He brings a number of coaching and leadership qualities to his position. He is able to align himself with an organization’s vision, and work with individuals who have many different kinds of personalities. He can also serve as a team leader in a variety of situations, using his excellent time management skills to run teams with confidence. As a leader, he will take ownership of projects, and make decisions to get them done. These skills have allowed him to deliver success across a wide variety of industries including law, broadcast TV, human capital management, education and entertainment. His fascination with digital marketing is more than a 9-5 one. In his spare time, he is actively participating in the trending topics throughout various platforms.
Gordon Nakagawa | Director
Gordon Nakagawa is Emeritus Professor of Communication Studies and Asian American Studies at California State University, Northridge (CSUN). His scholarship has examined Japanese American World War II incarceration narratives and communication, power, and equity in marginalized communities. He is a founding faculty member of the Asian American Studies Department at CSUN and the founding chair of the Asian Pacific American Communication Studies Division in the National Communication Association. In the 1980s, he was an activist with the National Coalition for Redress/Reparations, which advocated for a formal apology and reparations from the federal government for 120,000 Japanese Americans who were incarcerated in U.S. concentration camps during World War II. He has also served as the Director of Equity and Diversity at CSUN and as the first Director of Diversity Integration at Hamline University. He is currently an organizational consultant on Communication, Equity, and Diversity. Most recently, he was Vice President for Diversity Integration at the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts. He is a member of the Twin Cities chapter of the Japanese American Citizens League.
Martha J. Johnson | Director
Dr. Martha J. Johnson is the Assistant Dean for Learning Abroad at the University of Minnesota. She has worked in international education since 1991 for organizations and institutions in the US, Ireland, Australia, and the United Kingdom. She holds a BA with a double major in English literature and theatre arts from St Mary’s University of Minnesota, an MA in English literature from the University of St Thomas, and a PhD in American Studies with an emphasis in drama and the performance of gender, race, and cultural identity from the University of East Anglia in Norwich, England. Her dissertation focused on the works of playwright David Henry Hwang and she is a member of board of the David Henry Hwang Society. She has served in leadership positions for multiple educational programs, associations, and non-profit organizations.
Alice McGlave | Director
Alice McGlave is a Korean adoptee who grew up in Saint Paul, Minnesota. She studied vocal performance at New York University. After college, Alice returned home to Minnesota’s vibrant arts scene. Alice is a Twin Cities singer and actor. She performed in Full Circle Theater’s fringe show Glass/Lady M. in 2019. Alice has performed with several theater companies including Theater Mu, Park Square Theatre, and the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts. Alice is a litigation paralegal with SOULE & STULL LLC and serves as Pro Bono/Community Service Chair with the Minnesota Paralegal Association. She knows the importance of building strong relationships with today’s youth and volunteers with Big Brothers Big Sisters Twin Cities. Alice brings her artistic experience, millennial energy, and organizational talents to Full Circle Theater Company. Alice believes that representation matters and the value of seeing leadership that reflects and looks like the community. She is honored to join the board. Alice lives in Saint Paul with her daughter and husband.
Anna Pasno| Director
Anna Pasno is a recent graduate of the University of St. Thomas where she studied Creative Writing, Justice and Peace Studies, and Business. She served on the editorial board to produce the 45th edition of St. Thomas' literary magazine, the Summit Avenue Review, which has published her work many times in the past. She has also interned with Literacy Minnesota, presented at the ACTC conference, collaborated to organize and facilitate a World Cafe dialogue, and is currently part of a research team studying the effects of healing, drama, and ritual in partnership with Wonderlust Productions.
Brian Joyce| Director
Brian is excited to join the board of FCTC. Brian is currently the WIOA Program Director at the Minneapolis American Indian Center. Brian has been active in Twin Cities theater for more than 40 years. Brian first appeared on stage with Theatre Saint Paul at the age of four. He earned his BA in Theatre Arts from Bethel College. Brian has worked with Park Square, Theatre in the Round, Lakeshore Players, Shakespeare and Company, Red Eye, Theatre Coup d’Etat, New Native Theatre, Turtle Theater and others as an actor and a director. Brian also works as an actor in commercials and film.