Meet the Cast of “Violet”


Braton headshotLauren Braton (Violet). Spinning Tree: A Little Night Music (Countess Charlotte Malcolm).   Local credits: Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Quality Hill Playhouse, Musical Theater Heritage, American Heartland Theatre, Coterie Theatre, Starlight Theatre, Unicorn Theatre, Metropolitan Ensemble Theater, and Kansas City Civic Opera. Regional Credits: Arrow Rock Lyceum and Seagle Music Colony New York. Ms. Braton has a private voice studio at Kansas City Young Audiences, and also stays busy with commercial, film and voiceover work. Up next: That’s Entertainment – The MGM Years at Quality Hill Playhouse. @laurenbraton


Beeman headshotDaniel Beeman (Monty). Spinning Tree: A Little Night Music (Henrik). Daniel will be graduating in December from UMKC. Credits: Les Miserables, Mary Poppins, Betty Blue Eyes, The King and I (Music Theatre Wichita); The Sound of Music (Kansas City Starlight); Hands on a Hardbody (Unicorn); Carrie: the Musical (Egads); Next to Normal (She & Her). Boundless thanks to family, friends and Spinning Tree for the opportunity to be a part of this beautiful and compelling story!


Matthew King PICMatthew A. King (Flick). Spinning Tree: Ain’t Misbehavin.’ Egads! Theatre, Godspell; Musical Theater Heritage, South Pacific; The Coterie, Once Upon A Mattress; The  Living Room, The Death of Cupid; Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre, Ragtime and The King and I; Western Playhouse, New York Musical Theatre Festival premiere, Mother Divine. Matthew is beyond honored to be a part of such a passionate show and to be able to portray one of his bucket list characters. He would like to thank his incredibly supportive parents, his Spinning Tree family and his biggest fan for all their love.


Timothy D. AhleniusTim Ahlenius (Father). Spinning Tree: Debut. Tim is excited to add Spinning Tree Theatre to the list of places he’s privileged to work with. Some of his representative roles have been Dept File (The Rainmaker) and Dr. Spivey (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest) at MET, Steve (August: Osage County) at The Barn Players, and Charles Strickland (Race) and Artie (Hurlyburly) at The Living Room Theatre, where he also serves on their Board of Directors. Always an advocate for local talent, he wants to thank you for supporting Kansas City arts. Love to his family for their support!


Barboza headshotSamantha Barboza (Music Hall Singer and others). Spinning Tree: Debut. Thrilled to add Spinning Tree to a growing family of theatre companies including Musical Theater Heritage, Great Plains Theatre, Crane River Theatre, Arrow Rock Lyceum, Black Hills Playhouse, She&Her Productions and more! Favorite credits include: Lost Boy (AEA Staged Reading, NYC), Grease (Rizzo), Seussical (Sour Kangaroo), The Drowsy Chaperone (The Chaperone), Godspell (Sonia), Urinetown (Pennywise), Chicago (Mama Morton), Run for Your Wife (Mary), and Daddy’s Dyin’, Who’s Got the Will? (Marlene). Up next: Oliver! at Musical Theater Heritage.


Baron headshotKatelyn Baron (Ensemble, Female u/s). Spinning Tree: Debut. A recent graduate of the Musical Theatre program at Oklahoma City University, Katelyn appeared in productions including Violet (Violet), South Pacific (Bloody Mary), Dialogues of the Carmelites and Leonard Bernstein’s Mass. Local credits include Lysistrata Jones at Egads!, The Death of Cupid: A Whiskey Musical at The Living Room and Once Upon a Mattress at Coterie Theatre. Other favorite roles include Yonah in Children of Eden, Nettie in Carousel, and Nora in A Doll’s House. Thanks to Andy, Michael, Angie, the entire cast and crew, her parents and friends, and her Abba Father for literally everything.


Bartley headshotJake Bartley (Billy Dean and others). Spinning Tree: Debut. Jake is thrilled to make his debut with Spinning Tree Theatre. His other recent credits include Lyle the Crocodile at Coterie Theatre, Nuncrackers at American Heartland Theatre, Narnia and Peter Cottontail at Starlight Theatre, and Hairspray at Musical Theatre for Young People. Jake made a trip to New York this past summer to attend an intensive with Broadway Artist Alliance, and saw Violet performed on Broadway. He now feels honored to be a part of the Violet cast here at Spinning Tree Theatre. Hope you enjoy the show!


Blake headshotDamian Blake (Preacher and others). Spinning Tree: Debut. Damian is an actor of many faces, having appeared in and co-produced many variety shows around Kansas City including The New Century Follies burlesque and vaudeville revues through The Folly Theatre, and The Nightcap as D-list talk show host Arty Vulgaris.  He has been seen recently in Late Night Theatre’s Golden! Girls Gone Wild, The Coterie Theatre’s Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Lyle the Crocodile and Slashdance!, An Adult Evening of Shel Silverstein at The Fishtank, and The Accidental Waiter silent series through The Living Room Theatre and Lidia’s Restaurant. Damian is also an internationally recognized Charlie Chaplin impersonator, having appeared as Chaplin in print, on film, and for numerous corporations around the United States.


Hulla headshotKatie Hulla (Ensemble, u/s Young Violet). Spinning Tree: Debut. Katie, 12, is elated and grateful for this opportunity to perform in Violet. Her local credits include Peter Cottontail and Aladdin at Starlight Children’s Theatre, The Music Man at Musical Theater Heritage, and JosephDreamcoat at New Theatre Restaurant. Katie studies dance at Miller Marley, where she is a member of the Teen Competition Team, Entertainers, and Youth Ballet 2. She studies voice with Lena Andrews, and acting with Michael Grayman.  Much love to friends and family (especially Mom and Dad) for their constant love, support, and encouragement. Katie sends special thanks to Michael, Andy, and Angie.


Linebarger headshotBob Linebarger (Leroy Evans and others). Spinning Tree: Shipwrecked! An Entertainment, in which Bob played a collection of characters, his favorite being a dog named Bruno. He just got done making his directing and producing debut with Danny and the Deep Blue Sea at The Buffalo Room. Recent shows you might have seen him in are South Pacific with Musical Theater Heritage, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang at The Coterie and Fat Pig at The Living Room. He would like to thank Andy and Michael for always doing great theatre and you, the audience, for supporting great theatre.


McKenzie headshotLinnaia McKenzie (Gospel Soloist and others). Spinning Tree: Ain’t Misbehavin’. Linnaia’s first mark on the Kansas City theater scene was made in the Coterie’s 2012 production of Spring Awakening. Since then, she has graced the stages of Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre, Musical Theater Heritage, The Living Room Theater, MeltingPot KC, and most recently with Paul Mesner Puppets in Rag, Swing, Bop: The Charlie Parker Jr. Story (at the historic Gem Theater in the 18th and Vine district). Between shows Linnaia is actively writing music, studying piano, and pursuing a career in music. She would like to thank God, her Mother and friends for their undying support and love.


Shaw headshotJulie Shaw (Old Lady and others). Spinning Tree: Motherhood Out Loud; Hello Again; The Fantasticks. Julie is so happy to be performing again with Spinning Tree!  She has been seen locally at The Coterie Theatre, Musical Theatre Heritage, The Unicorn Theatre, Quality Hill Playhouse, The American Heartland Theatre, and Chestnut Fine Arts.  Julie made her Off Broadway debut in Lucky Duck at The New Victory Theatre in NYC in 2012.  Look for her next in Spinning Tree’s Fiddler on the Roof.  As always, much love to her patient and supportive family, Stuart, Jack and Caroline.


Trondson headshot resizedDevyn Trondson (Young Violet). Spinning Tree: Debut. Devyn is thrilled to be making her Spinning Tree Theatre debut! Credits include: A Christmas Carol as Simon (Kansas City Repertory); Joseph…Dreamcoat (New Theatre); Honk, Children of Eden, Disney Double Feature (Theatre in the Park); Bugsy Malone Jr (Coterie Theatre) and various others. Devyn enjoys singing with Allegro Community Choir, for which she has performed at many venues across the country. She also loves performing with Starlight Stars of Tomorrow. Devyn would like to thank God, her family, Jay, Andy, Michael and Angie for this amazing opportunity. Enjoy the show!


Wearing headshotBob Wearing (Virgil and others). Spinning Tree: A Little Night Music (Mr. Erlanson). Bob is overjoyed to be returning to Spinning Tree Theatre with this phenomenal cast and crew! KC credits include The Normal Heart (Relevance Productions), Bernstein’s Broadway and South Pacific (Musical Theater Heritage). Bob will return to Spinning Tree in the spring as Motel in Fiddler on the Roof. All the love in the world to James, Chris, Ben, and Betsy Wearing!