Terry Teachout (playwright) is the drama critic of the Wall Street Journal and the critic-at-large
of Commentary. He played jazz bass professionally in Kansas City before becoming a full-time
writer. His books include Pops: A Life of Louis Armstrong, All in the Dances: A Brief Life of
George Balanchine, A Terry Teachout Reader and The Skeptic: A Life of H.L. Mencken. He is
currently at work on Mood Indigo: A Life of Duke Ellington. He is the author of the libretti for two
operas by Paul Moravec, The Letter premiered by the Santa Fe Opera in 2009) and Danse
Russe (premiered by Philadelphia's Center City Opera Theater in 2011). Satchmo at The
Waldorf is his first play.
Rus Blackwell started his career in New York, training at Circle in the Square Theatre School
and working in the theatre. A strong work ethic and endless passion have made Blackwell a
solid actor, producer and director. Rus is an original founder and artistic director of Mad Cow
and SoulFire Theatre. He directed Streetcar Named Desireand Sweet Bird of Youth for the
Tennessee Williams Tribute in William’s birthplace of Columbus, Ms. Other selected regional
projects include To Kill a Mockingbird, All My Sons, The Lonesome West along with producing
Tony and Tina’s Wedding. In addition, Rus has built an extensive acting resume’ composed of
hundreds of Theatre, Film and Television credits which include roles in the Oscar and Emmy
award winning projects The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Monster, HBO’s Recount and
From the Earth to the Moon.
Dennis Neal is regarded as one of Orlando's finest actors. He made his debut in Athol
Fugard's "My Children, My Africa" and has pursued his love of the craft for twenty five years.
He has endured and succeeded in the business carving out a niche that includes stellar
performances in works by August Wilson, David Mamet and Stephen Adley Guirgis to name
just a few. Over the course of his journey he has had an opportunity to work with some
incredibly talented people who have served to both elevate and illustrate the depth of his skill.
While the theater is his first love, Dennis has also worked extensively in film with roles in 'Dead
Man Walking', 'Wild Things', 'Sunshine State', and television appearing in 'The West Wing',
'The Practice' and 'Army Wives' to name a few projects. His list of credits is extensive and
continues to grow as he is very active in all areas of story telling.