I have always loved fireflies. They are such delicate, mystical creatures that live in their own magical universe. They produce their own light and communicate with each other through that light.
Henrietta Leavitt had a brilliance and a light within that generated an enormous desire for her to communicate with the magical universe of the stars above us. She and other women of comparable brilliance found themselves banding together to chart the skies. These luminous women gave us the tools to map out the night sky and revolutionized the way scientists classified the stars.
As with fireflies, Henrietta’s lifespan was short. One might wonder what other discoveries she might have found if her life had been prolonged.
— Barta Heiner
Synopsis of Scenes
The Harvard Observatory 2nd floor offices
Leavitt home, Wisconsin
Ocean liner on the Atlantic
Henrietta's home, Cambridge, MA
Cast in Order of Appearance
Mon · Wed · Fri
Tues · Thurs · Sat
MON · WED · FRI
Amber is honored to be back on the Jewel Box Stage. Favorite stage credits include: Annie in The Play that Goes Wrong and Molly Astor in Peter and the Starcatcher at Hale Centre Theatre; Beth March in Little Women and Anne Frank in The Diary of Anne Frank at Hale Center Theater Orem. Amber holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Costume Design from UVU. “I’d like to thank my family, my friends, and most of all my cats”.
TUES · THURS · SAT
Thrilled to be back on the HCT stage! Becca’s favorite stage credits include: The Importance of Being Earnest (Gwendolyn) and Dear Ruth (Ruth) with HCTO; Pride and Prejudice (Elizabeth) at the Creekside Theater Fest; and Beau Jest (Sarah) with HCT. She holds a BFA in Acting from BYU, where she also worked as an Adjunct Professor. “My favorite roles will always be as a mom to my three wonderful kids and spouse to the incomparable Chris Morales.”
MON · WED · FRI
Ecstatic to be on the HCT stage once again! Malia’s favorite credits include: HCT - The Light in the Piazza and AIDA; HCTO - Sense and Sensibility, Little Women, Tarzan, and Jane Eyre: The Musical; Abravanel Hall - Lamb of God, and A Night on Broadway. She holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from BYU and works as a Quality Assurance Specialist at Lucid Software. “For my family, who love fiercely even when “our understanding is distinct.” You are my home.”
TUES · THURS · SAT
Making her HCT debut! Madeline’s favorite credits include Angel Street and Blithe Spirit with The Covey Center for the Arts and MacBeth with Draper Historic Theatre. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature from UVU where she was selected as the 2021 Outstanding English Graduate. She works as a Copywriter on the creative team at Vivint. “Thanks be to my loved ones, who inspire me to look up, who’ve taught me to work hard, and who every day, make the stars shine a little brighter.”
MON · WED · FR
Favorite performing credits include: HCT - Treasure Island, The Play That Goes Wrong, Beau Jest, Over the River…, Peter and the Starcatcher, The Heart of Robin Hood, and Newsies; HCTO - The Sound of Music, Matilda, Charley’s Aunt, The Odd Couple, Cash on Delivery!, and The Diary of Anne Frank. Ben has a Master's degree in HR Management from Rollins College and works as the Manager of Customer Education at BambooHR. “All the love to Elliott, Oliver, Atticus, and Luana - the brightest object in my day since the day we met!”
Happy to be back on the HCT stage! His favorite credits include One For the Pot with Hale Centre Theatre; The 39 Steps, Emma, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, and The Man With the Pointed Toes - HCTO; and Wait Until Dark, You Can’t Take It With You, and The Curious Savage - PG Players. He is a graduate of the David Scott Applied Art of Acting Conservatory Program and is a Freelance Audiobook Narrator/Producer. “All my love to my wife, Kennedy, and to my family for all the support they’ve given me, and for the passion and ethics they’ve taught me.”
Making her HCT debut! Kris’s favorite credits include: HCTO - The Sound of Music; Grassroots Shakespeare SLC - King Lear; Sackerson Theatre Co. - An Oak Tree; Highland City Arts - Dancing at Lughnasa; Happy Accidents Theatre Co. - A Day in the Death of Joe Egg; and Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre - King John and A Winter’s Tale. She has an MFA in Theatre Practice: Staging Shakespeare from the University of Exeter, and a BA in Theatre and Media Arts Education from BYU, where she is an Assistant Professor of Theatre. “All my love to Tony, Max, Sam, and Indy!”
Gracing the HCT stage once again! Tamari’s credits include: HCT: One For the Pot (Amy Hardcastle), Always…Patsy Cline (Louise Seger), Murder on the Orient Express (Helen Hubbard), Bright Star (Mama Murphy) and Steel Magnolias (M’Lynn); Lyric Repertory Company: Gray Gardens (Edith/Little Edie), Nunsense (Sister Amnesia), Lend Me A Tenor (Diana), and Private Lives (Amanda); PTC: Oliver! (Old Sally) and The Last Ship (Shipyard Welder); The Grand Theatre: Picnic (Flo Owens); Pinnacle Acting Company: Comedy of Errors and Dancing at Lughnasa; and Sting and Honey: Sleeping Beauty’s Dream and The Proposal. “Much love to my ever-supportive husband and kiddos!”
MON · WED · FRI
Making her HCT debut! Kim’s favorite credits include Fossil Record, Doubt, and Angels in America with An Other Theatre Company; In Her Own Hand: The Letters of Mary Hallock-Foote with Kayenta Performance Arts Center; and The Wizard of Oz with Sundance Theater. She is an Associate Professor of Integrated Studies as well as the Director of the Humanities Program at UVU.
TUES · THURS · SAT
Appearing for the first time on an HCT stage while there is an audience! Samantha’s favorite credits include Much Ado About Nothing, Silent Sky, and Middletown with SLCC Black Box Theatre; Bang Bang You’re Dead at the SLC Fringe Festival; and Page to Stage with Wasatch Theatre Company. She has an Associate in Theatrical Arts from SLCC and when not on stage at HCT she works backstage as a Production Assistant. “For Mickey, Gus, and Jak - You are my neverending sunshine! It’s simpler to measure the distance between stars than it is to measure my love for you!”
Searching the Stars
Please visit our lobby display to see replicas of tools and notebooks, used by the women portrayed in the show, to measure stars. We would like to thank Dr. Sarah Lavalee and the Center for Astrophysics at Harvard University for their generous cooperation in allowing us access to these archived materials.
Production Team Biographies
Barta is not a stranger to the Hales and Dietleins whom she has known since the 1970’s. After graduating from BYU, she had the delightful pleasure to work with both Ruth and Nathan Hale and their family of actors at the Glendale Center Theater in California. Ms. Heiner has performed in numerous theatrical and film productions: most recently Alien Country (soon to be released this year) and Once I was Engaged. Other recent directing credits include The 39 Steps for Hale Center Theater Orem and Murder on the Orient Express at Hale Centre Theatre in Sandy. Needless to say, Ms. Heiner is delighted to be working with the excellent production team and actors at the Hale Centre Theatre in Sandy again.
Megan is thrilled to be back in the Stage Manager seat at Hale Centre Theatre after helming Always...Patsy Cline,Daddy Long Legs, Murder on the Orient Express, and our 2019, 2020, and 2021 productions of A Christmas Carol.
Favorite Stage Management credits include: SCERA Shell-Newsies; Noorda Performing Arts Center-Week of Dreams Events; Ragan Theater-Die Fledermaus; UVU-Jumpers. Asst. Stage Manager-Sundance Summer Theatre for Joseph...Dreamcoat. Stage Management Intern-O’Neill Theatre Center in Waterford, CT. Megan received her Associates of Arts from Snow College with an emphasis in Theatre and her Bachelor of Arts from Utah Valley University in Theatre. She graduated from both programs Summa Cum Laude. Megan also won the National Award in Stage Management at KCACTF Region 8 Competition in 2018. “You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” -AA Milne.
As an accomplished artist and associate Designer, Madeline’s work was recently seen in our productions of Guys and Dolls, Les Misérables, A Tale of Two Cities, Disney’s Tarzan, Murder on the Orient Express, Million Dollar Quartet, Baz Lurhman’s Strictly Ballroom The Musical, Bright Star, Seussical, Matilda, and Cinderella.
Other scenic design credits include: Daddy Long Legs,Murder on the Orient Express (HCT); Oklahoma! (Sundance); Distance of the Moon (Sackerson); and Let The Right One In,and Angels in America (An Other Theatre). Madeline earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Scenic Design from Utah Valley University.
Peggy has designed & sewn for HCT since 2005. She lists some of her favorite designs as School of Rock, The Heart of Robin Hood, Peter and the Starcatcher, Big Fish, Tarzan, Les Misérables, Daddy Long Legs, The Play That Goes Wrong, Treasure Island (2022), The Mousetrap, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and Matilda.
Peggy loves the design process but also likes stepping back to be a “sewing/crafting gremlin” in the costume shop. Peggy holds a BFA in Costume Design for Theatre from USU and currently works full-time in HCT’s Costume Shop. “Love and thanks to my family for their enthusiasm and support when my theatre world engulfs the real one!”
Recent Hale Centre Theatre credits for Marianne include the Lighting Design for Silent Sky, The Light in the Piazza,Daddy Long Legs, Murder On The Orient Express, Bright Star, and The Addams Family. She works as a Lighting Designer and Lighting Manager for BYU's Theatre and Media Arts Department.
Marianne holds her Bachelor's Degree from Brigham Young University and her Master’s from the University of Idaho. Recent designs for BYU include BYU Spectacular, Fiddler on the Roof, and Pride and Prejudice. She also enjoys designing for Utah Metropolitan Ballet.
Kristin has been an audio engineer at HCT for almost four years and loves helping share stories through sound. She has loved working with the amazing women of the Silent Sky production team to bring this story to life. She wants to thank her boss and mentor Michelle Ohumukini for all of her guidance and support and the rest of the wonderful HCT sound department for all of their help.
Michelle is extremely passionate about details, research, beautiful and interesting “things,” anything to do with flowers, and opening packages. She recently designed her 86th show with our production of Treasure Island; some of her other favorite designs have included The Drowsy Chaperone, Over The River...,Les Misérables, Tarzan, Tuck Everlasting, My Fair Lady, AIDA, and She Loves Me.
She retired from teaching first grade after 32 years. Michelle is thrilled to be part of the HCT production team and is grateful for the encouragement and support of her three beautiful daughters, two charming sons-in-law, and her amazing husband, Steve.
Hair & Make Up Design
Marnee’ Porter is a professional wig and makeup artisan specializing in theatrical and operatic work. Based in Utah, She has designed productions at Utah Opera, the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM), and at Brigham Young University and has a passion for working with performers and projects that are larger than life.
Marnee’ thrives on being a part of visual storytelling, through the transformative power of makeup and character creation. She completed an MFA in Wig Making and Makeup Design from CCM and also has a degree in Theatre Art Studies from BYU.
Alena has been a part of Hale Centre Theatre since May of 2012. Currently she works with both the Video Department as the Show Programmer and the Automation department as a Show Operator and Designer. Some of Alena’s favorite designs for HCT include: Million Dollar Quartet, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, The Addams Family, and Freaky Friday. “I’m hilarious”
Lauren Gunderson is the most produced living playwright in America, the winner of the Lanford Wilson Award and the Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award, a finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize and John Gassner Award for Playwriting, and a recipient of the Mellon Foundation’s 3-Year Residency with Marin Theatre Co.
She studied Southern Literature and Drama at Emory University, and Dramatic Writing at NYU’s Tisch School where she was a Reynolds Fellow in Social Entrepreneurship. Her work has been commissioned, produced and developed at companies across the US including the Denver Center (THE BOOK OF WILL), South Coast Rep (EMILIE, SILENT SKY), The Kennedy Center (THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF DR. WONDERFUL AND HER DOG!), the O’Neill Theatre Center, Berkeley Rep, Shotgun Players, TheatreWorks, Crowded Fire, San Francisco Playhouse, Marin Theatre, Synchronicity, Olney Theatre, Geva, and more. Her work is published by Dramatists Play Service (SILENT SKY, BAUER), Playscripts (I AND YOU; EXIT, PURSUED BY A BEAR; and TOIL AND TROUBLE), and Samuel French (EMILIE). She is a Playwright in Residence at The Playwrights Foundation, and a proud Dramatists Guild member. She is from Atlanta, GA, and lives in San Francisco. LaurenGunderson.com and @LalaTellsAStory.