CHICAGO – It is with great excitement Brown Paper Box Co. announces a change-up and addition to their Executive Team as they continue their 2017/2018 season. Co-founding members Anna Schutz and M. William Panek are making the move to Executive Director and Marketing Director, respectively. They are joined by Kristi Szczepanek in the company’s newest Executive role, Director of Community Outreach & Development. Kristi has gone above and beyond as Company Admin and has proven herself as a driven, organized, and forward-thinking leader in her short time as Artistic Associate.
“Anna’s keen sense of business and artistic integrity makes her the perfect person to run the day-to-day logistics of the company,” says Board of Directors President David Lipschutz. “She has been involved since the very beginning, and no one knows the ins and outs of BPBCo. like her. The Board is thrilled to continue this and future seasons with the three of them leading the team.”
“I’m very excited by these changes,” adds Board Member Michelle Kritselis. “William has been actively involved in creating the company’s ‘voice’ on social media and in promotional materials since the very beginning, so he is a natural choice for Marketing Director. In Kristi’s first year with Brown Paper Box Co., she has quickly established herself as a forward-thinking leader and coordinator. She is an asset to the executive team and the company overall.”
Following Positively Present: An Uplifting Cabaret at Mary’s Attic in Andersonville, Brown Paper Box Co.’s 2017/2018 season continues with Neil Simon, Marvin Hamlisch, and Carole Bayer Sager’s They’re Playing Our Song directed and choreographed by Jeff Award nominee & Artistic Associate Daniel Spagnuolo at Rivendell Theatre July 21-August 20, 2017, a special Fall Event in October 2017, and Tony Award winner Stephen Karam’s Speech & Debate directed by Artistic Associate David Lipschutz in January & February 2018.
Anna Schutz (Executive Director) is a founding member of Brown Paper Box Co. She holds a BFA in Acting from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her backstage work with the Brown Paper Box Co. includes production manager and stage manager for Godspell and production manager for The Baltimore Waltz (Jeff Recommended), Spike Heels & To Tree. Anna created and coordinated “The Broad-Way: A Ladies Cabaret” and “Brown Paper Bash: 5 Year Anniversary” special events. She has performed with the Brown Paper Box Co. as Woman 2 in Now. Here. This., Heidi in [title of show], Nancy D./Waitress in A New Brain, Joy/Billy in Aloha, Say the Pretty Girls, Mary Lane in Reefer Madness! the Musical and all of the 4/20 productions as well as all of their cabaret series. Some of her other acting credits include: Circle Mirror Transformation (Oil Lamp), Epic Proportions (Project 891), the Chicago premiere of Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead (Rubicon Project), Indecent Proposals and Baby (Metropolis PAC), Dennis DeYoung’s Jeff Award Winning The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Bailiwick Rep.), You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown! and Stuck (La Costa Theatre), and The Who’s Tommy(Jedlicka PAC). www.annaschutz.com
William Panek(Marketing Director) is a co-founding member of Brown Paper Box Co. and proud graduate of the University of Illinois’ Theatre Department. Up Next: Production Manager for They’re Playing Our Song. Director: Chicago premieres of Now. Here. This. the Jeff Recommended [title of show], A New Brain, Aloha, Say the Pretty Girls, Godspell, the world premiere of Aaron Golden’s To Tree, and Reefer Madness! The Musical in 2010, 2011, and 2012. Recent collaborations with Zach Zimmerman (Luke Babylon: The Christian Magician and Spell: A Interactive Solo Show) at iO Chicago, iO New York, and the Annoyance Theatre, as well as The Artists Lab at Stage 773. Casting: The Baltimore Waltz, Julius Caesar, and Spike Heels. William served as an artistic associate with The Orchard Project in Hunter, NY, a production assistant for the 24-Hour Musicals at Joe’s Pub, and the business management assistant at the Williamstown Theatre Festival. He can be found on Twitter & Instagram @mwilliampanek.
Kristi Szczepanek (Director of Community Outreach & Development) joined Brown Paper Box after performing as the understudy in Now. Here. This. She has since been seen with BPB in The Broad-Way: A Ladies Cabaret and created and coordinated Positively Present: An Uplifting Cabaret. She served as the Management and Development Assistant at Off-Off-Broadway’s Ensemble Studio Theatre, helping to coordinate events like the Sloan Project and their annual Marathon of One Act Plays. Chicago companies she’s had the pleasure of working with both onstage and off include Quest Theatre Ensemble, Tympanic Theatre Company, Chicago Dramatists and the Something Marvelous Festival. www.kristisz.com
About Brown Paper Box Co.
Brown Paper Box Co. creates challenging and inspiring theatre that focuses on the text. By employing a smart, simple aesthetic in intimate spaces, we connect audiences directly to the heart of the story. For more information about Brown Paper Box Co., please visit www.BrownPaperBox.org. Follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/BPBCO, Instagram @BPBCO, and Twitter @BrownPaperBoxCo.
Brown Paper Box Co.’s Artistic Associates and Artistic Staff Members include T.J. Anderson, Margaret Baughman, Zach Dries, Justin Harner, Sara Heymann, Stephanie Rohr, Jenna Schoppe, Matt Sergot, Charlie Sheets, Daniel Spagnuolo, and Damian Wille. The Board of Directors include David Lipschutz (President), Sarah Sapperstein (Vice President), Nick Shoda (Secretary), Corey Lindsey (Treasurer), Michelle Kritselis (Development Director), and co-founding member Zev Steinberg.
Brown Paper Box Co. is generously supported by MacArthur Funds for Arts and Culture at the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, the Saints Volunteers for the Performing Arts – Chicago, Illinois Tool Works Foundation, the Rebeca Kutchins Fund, and individual season supporters.