This production was staged as part of our 2013/14 Season

By the Way, Meet Vera Stark

By the Way, Meet Vera Stark

October 16 to November 10, 2013 | On the Alliance Stage

Content may be inappropriate for children under age 14.

"An engaging, approachable, and entertaining must-see..." —

"Vera Stark is a fabulous force of nature." — Pearl Cleage 

Laugh your way through Hollywood's complicated history as you're introduced to Vera Stark.

The cards are stacked against Vera and her fledgling acting career. Vera's trying to make it, but she's got a few things going against her:

  • It's Hollywood in the 1930s and she's a woman.
  • It's Hollywood in the 1930s and she's a woman of color.
  • It's Hollywood and, man, is it ever hard to make it there.
  • It's Hollywood and she's a woman.
  • It's Hollywood and she's a woman of color.
  • Yes, some of these things count twice.

And of course her friends are competing for the same roles. Heck, even Vera's boss is trying to be in the same films. And they're all going to do whatever it takes to land those roles. Yes, hilarity ensues.

But there's more to Vera's story than perseverance and hard work. A little taste of success sets the stage for decades of "scholarly" examination of her career and its impact on the history of film. 


By the Way, Meet Vera Stark is written by Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage (Intimate Apparel) and inspired by the life and career of Theresa Harris, a pioneering African-American film star.



Production assistance provided by:
Savannah College of Art and Design

Photos & Video

Cast & Crew


  • Mr. Slasvick/Brad Donovan
    Atlanta Theatre: By the Way, Meet Vera Stark; Good People; August: Osage County; Eurydice; Tennis In Nablus (Alliance Theatre); Race (True Colors Theatre); Seminar,... read more »
  • Understudy for Gloria Mitchell
    Molly is delighted join the cast of James and the Giant Peach! Alliance credits: A Christmas Carol (U/S Female Ensemble); The Tall Girls (U/S Jean/Lurlene); By the Way,... read more »
  • Understudy for Leroy Barksdale/Herb Forrester
    Leland is excited to be taking on his first professional understudy role at the Alliance. He has most recently been seen in the Alliance Theatre Education Department... read more »
  • Understudy for Lottie McBride/Carmen Levy
    Britny was last seen at the Alliance in Buried Too High, which was a reading at the 2012 Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition Readings Festival.... read more »
  • Lottie/Carmen Levy-Green
    Theatre: Margie in the world premiere of Kirsten Greenidge’s Milk Like Sugar (dir. Rebecca Taichman) at Playwrights Horizons and La Jolla Playhouse;  Shaunta... read more »
  • Leroy Barksdale/Herb Forrester
    Originally from Detroit, MI. Alliance Theatre debut. NYC: Everything Is Ours at HERE arts Center; Regional credits include: Map of Heaven, Othello, 39 Steps, A Christmas... read more »
  • Gloria Mitchell
    Courtney returns to the Alliance after appearing in such productions as The Geller Girls; By the Way, Meet Vera Stark; August: Osage County; and Who’s Afraid... read more »
  • Anna Mae Simpkins/Afua Assata Ejobo
    Tiffany is thrilled to be back in her hometown making her Alliance Theatre debut. Theatre credits include: Conference of the Birds, The Folger Theatre; The African... read more »
  • Understudy for Vera Stark/Anna Mae Simpkins/Afua Assata Ejobo
    Danielle is incredibly excited to be back at the Alliance Theatre. She previously understudied at Alliance for By the Way, Meet Vera Stark (US Vera, Anna Mae). She has... read more »
  • Maximillian Von Oster/Peter Rhys-Davies
    Daniel is happy to be back at the Alliance. Other Alliance credits: By the Way, Meet Vera Starkand It's a Wonderful Laugh. TV/Film: Endless Love... read more »
  • Vera Stark
    Toni is proud to make her Alliance Theatre debut in the title role. Ms. Trucks has a wide range of work spanning stage, film, and television. This fall she can be found... read more »
  • Understudy for Mr. Slasvick/Brad Donovan/Maximillian von Oster/Peter Rhys-Davies
    Jeremy is thrilled to be back at the Alliance Theatre. Some of his favorite Atlanta credits include Shrek: The Musical; A Christmas Carol; By the Way, Meet Vera Stark;... read more »


  • Sound Design
    Clay has been the Resident Sound Designer at the Alliance Theatre for 15 years and has designed more than 85 productions including 26 world premieres, 30 musicals and 20... read more »
  • Set Design
    Regional: Charley’s Aunt (Guthrie Theater); Macbeth (Shakespeare Theater); Rough Crossing (Old Globe Theatre); You Never Can... read more »
  • Stage Manager
    Although lark has been Stage Managing here at the Alliance Theatre for more than 20 years, she has worked for many regional theatres across the United States (Cleveland... read more »
  • Composer
    Haddon is a composer, lyricist and sound designer. His rock musical co-adaptation of The Snow Queen will receive five productions this winter including at New Rep in... read more »
  • Playwright
    Lynn Nottage’s newest play By The Way, Meet Vera Stark has been produced Off-Broadway at Second Stage Theatre, Geffen Theatre and Goodman Theatre, amongst... read more »
  • Costume Design
    Broadway—Motown (upcoming), Porgy and Bess (Tony nom), Topdog/Underdog. Off Broadway— Second Stage: Water by the Spoonful, By the Way, Meet Vera Stark (... read more »
  • Assistant Stage Manager
    Jayson is proud to return to the Alliance Theatre! He has had the pleasure of working on Alliance productions such as The Geller Girls; By the Way, Meet Vera Stark;... read more »
  • Lighting Design
    Ken is the Resident Lighting Designer for Sarasota Opera, Lighting Designer for Atlanta Opera, and Lighting Director of FIO Americas, Brazil. Alliance credits: Native... read more »


  • Director
    NYC: born bad (U.S. premiere, Soho Rep, Obie Award); Bulrusher (World Premiere and Pulitzer Prize finalist, Urban Stages); Kent, CT (Zipper Theater).  Nationally:... read more »

Audience Feedback


Alliance Rendering 1

The Alliance Theatre has released final design renderings of its theater transformation, which is scheduled to begin in the summer of 2017. This is the first major building reinvention for the theater since its construction in 1968 as part of the Woodruff Arts Center campus. The Alliance Theatre will perform its 2017/18 season in 12 different locations in the metro Atlanta area, bringing live theater out into the community it serves. The Alliance plans to return to its new theater space for its 50th anniversary season in the fall of 2018.

Sal Viscuson

We had the great privilege of sitting down with actor Sal Viscuso to talk about his role as Denny in A Steady Rain and about his history a

Susan V. Booth was honored today at the Georgia State Capitol as a recipient of Gov.



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