The Players

Mouseover to learn more about those who've read with us (and have heeded the AD's call for bios)!

Kate Akerboom



Kate Akerboom is a multi-creative individual based in Chicago, and Managing Director Emeritus here at 14NP. An educator, actor, and all around theatre person, Kate is thrilled to be working on this digital Shakespeare project. They are a proud graduate of the University of Wisconsin—Green Bay with degrees in theatre performance and history, as well as pursuing a Master's degree in Public History from Southern New Hampshire University. When not creating or organizing people, Kate is an avid runner and dog parent. And no. They do not get that reference you just made.






Ammmy focused on dramaturgy and theatrical literature in her undergrad degree, and now does something totally unrelated because she graduated right into the Great Recession. She attends a lot of theatre and occasionally gets into mildly drunken arguments about Falstaff at parties. Best known for heavy use/abuse of the dramaturgy channel, and for repeatedly and flawlessly reading the first line of King Lear in Gloucestergate 2020.


Andy Anderson

(Thomas Cross)


Andy is 35 years old and has loved the works of Shakespeare for 25 years now. He is an aspiring improver and an actor out at the Bristol Renaissance Faire. He fell in love with Shakespeare when he was 10 years old and read Hamlet for the first time (he knows, "what is wrong with this guy"). It fascinated him; the style of writing, the characters, just everything about it. Playing Puck in A Midsummer Night's Dream or Hamlet or Horatio in Hamlet are dreams of his as well as one day performing in a Shakespearean themed improv show.





Artemis is a student currently studying English & History, a degree that doesn't quite live up to the promise of performing parts of Richard III on Bosworth Field itself, alas. When not studying, she's an active member and vice-president of her uni theatre society where she's determined for a Shakespeare to be produced one day, or can be found writing and reading. At this point, alongside Juliet on a live stage, her dream Shakespeare roles have amassed to a long list of the many brilliant Shakespearean women she's had the honour to portray through 14th Night Readings. She happens, shockingly enough, to own multiple pairs of shoes. 


Jay Griffin



Jay is an ex-academic and general purpose nerd coming to you live from Chicago! They wrote their MA thesis on why William Davenant's version of Macbeth is terrible. Everything in Shakespeare is gay and there's nothing you can do about it. Their favorite comedy, history, and tragedy are, in order, Twelfth Night, Henry IV pt I, and (of course) Macbeth.





Do you love box office horror stories? Rachel's got you covered! When not placating the masses she's usually lost in a new anime adventure, audiobook, or CW show. Upsetting the jock versus nerd dynamic since 2001.


Ben Cordes



A fan of Shakespeare since high school, where he was mostly a lighting tech and only occasionally acted, Ben discovered the nerdy depths of his love for The Bard on his first visit to Shakespeare's Globe in London. He's since played a variety of roles in the Boston area with Verse & Vodka and Theatre@First, where he is currently the Technical Coordinator. He enjoys in-depth text study of Shakespeare and is just starting to learn how to flex his directing muscles. But deep in his heart, he'll always be a techie first.


Elizabeth MacDougald

(Lady Illyria Corsin-Belzen)


A huge fan of The Bard since high school, Elizabeth graduated from Loyola Chicago with a BA in Theatre and a Minor in Classical Studies. Right out of college she was cast as Olivia in Twelfth Night where she met her future husband. Since then, she has been seen on a few Chicago stages, sometimes speaking the speech: Kate, Titania, and Paulina are some of the highlights. Dream roles include Prospero (thanks for that, btw), Beatrice, Lady M, and Paulina (yes, again, because coming for Leontes's WHOLE ass is too much fun to only do once)





Ryder started reading and performing Shakespeare when they were 9, and fell in love with it all. They've been in many a Shakespeare play (including the Scottish one 4 times), as well as directed a few and would love to direct a few more at least, with their own personal spin. Their favorite play is Othello, and their dream roles are Iago, and Hal in Henry IV part I.


Ariel Pearl



Ariel was never heavily involved in theater save playing in the pit for the Yeoman and the Guard in college and doing skits at Anime Central. She's always loved reading plays (her fav playwrights are Tennessee Williams and Beckett) and is excited to become better acquainted with Shakespeare! She got her bachelors in Econ, went to law school (guesses you could count litigation as a form of theater?), and is a law librarian at the University of Chicago. She's an avid nerd and the proud mama of a beautiful baby girl named Wednesday (who joins us from time to time). Her dream role is Lady Macbeth, and her favorite Shakespeare plays are Macbeth and Othello.


Haley Ebinal



Haley Ebinal is a Milwaukee-based actor, violinist, and writer who believes empathetic, community-building storytelling is the most effective weapon against isolation, harmful assumptions, and disappearing histories. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, where she studied theatre performance, philosophy, and music. Past Shakespeare roles include Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Play-By-Play Theatre) and Nym in Henry V (Voices Found Repertory). When she’s not acting, Haley enjoys writing, yoga, dance, podcasting (@AnimeWithWine), and making music. Follow Haley’s latest projects: @ohheyhaleyrose and





Rex joins us from their home in Gloucestershire, in the south west of England, indulging their love of early modern English and the performing arts that they have had since they were a dragon hatchling exploring the Ren Faires of Somerset and Stirling Forest. They are an artist and aspiring writer of fantasy primarily, though they dabble in other hobbies such as gaming, gardening, and throwing together slightly anachronistic garb for the local Battle of Tewkesbury festival every midsummer.


Bodie Shanis



A former high school theater kid, Bodie grew up to be a young adult author so he could write books about current high school theater kids. Outside the world of Discord, he’s played Guildenstern, Hermia, and Cassius, whom he enjoyed so much that he’s now on a mission to cover as many Shakespeare baddies as he can get his hands on. His favorite play is Julius Caesar, but he's also a little obsessed with Timon of Athens (yes, really). Bodie lives in Boston and loves cosplay, weird history facts, and the ocean.


Eric Simon



Eric was a Theatre Major for undergrad, but ended up doing a lot of tech, and then his performance veered into storytelling/creative drama and the educational side of theatre. Years later, he got a Masters in Education and taught 1st grade for nearly a decade. Now he writes roleplaying games for a living, and has also written a play that was produced here in Chicago. He has rarely had the opportunity to perform Shakespeare outside of his undergrad acting class, although did use Lear's storm speech as an illustration in a persuasive speaking class he taught for several years.


Sarah Tomas



Sarah has done all sorts of theater, musical, old-as-hell, or otherwise for many (6? 7?) years—though it has been, as a wise prophet once said, a "hot minute" since she's been on the stage. You may have seen her in such roles as Cinderella in Into the Woods, too many NATS competitions, and live reading Romeo and Juliet with too much gusto in English class when all her classmates wanted to shove her in a locker.





A classically trained composer (B.A. Central College, M.M. DePaul University School of Music) and deep thinker from Elsewhere, Ora lives in the Driftless Area, works in sacred space, operates a seasonal funicular, and specializes in meditative art styles: contemporary classical music improvisation on piano, monumental voxel building, a growing collection of a dozen senbazuru, closeup abstract ice and nature photography, fire spinning, and writing. She has music on Soundcloud and a fiction sketch on Wordpress. She has seen the fnords.


More arriving as the information is gathered in its petty pace from day to day to day!