The Last 5 Years in graphic pencil over clock sketches

Written and composed by Jason Robert Brown
Directed by Kelly Krieger

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*This production has moments of sexual references and situations, adult humor, content, and situations. The Last Five Years is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). All authorized performance materials are also provided by MTI.


Becca Arencibia
 (she/her) is a senior musical theater major at University of the Arts. Her past UArts performances include Rhinoceros and Monty Python’s 500 years of Sillyness. This is Becca’s first musical performance at UArts and last production of her college career! She will forever be grateful to have a team that is so passionate and wonderfully skilled by her side. She is thankful for everyone who has believed in her and yes, you’re a part of that. <3

Collin McHugh (he/him) is a current student at University of the Arts majoring in musical theater. Some of his favorite shows that he’s been involved in are Spring AwakeningGodspellInto the Woods and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. This is his first production at UArts and he is very excited to bring this virtual journey to a screen near you!

Caroline O’Connell (she/her) is a musical theater major in her junior year. This is her first show to actually go up at UArts so let’s hear a little commotion for the dress! Thanks to her friends and family for keeping her sane. <3 Thanks to the team of TL5Y, and she’ll blow an extra little kiss to Dave Barrus. Enjoy the show!!

Z Strasnick (they/them) is a musical theater major in their sophomore year. Previously, they were in Urinetown: The MusicalMonty Python’s 500 Years of Sillyness, and RA: A Documentary at UArts. They have also been an actor and production team member in multiple local theaters in the Greater Boston Area. Z is very excited to kick off their first mainstage production at UArts and challenge the way that we view this show through the lens of gender, and they have vowed that they are never gonna go back to Ohio.

Creative Team

Kelly Krieger (Director) (he/him) is a director, actor and current senior Directing, Playwriting and Production major at UArts. Some of his past directorial credits include Into the WoodsSpring AwakeningPeter and the StarcatcherAvenue Q and Godspell. He is also the current artistic director of Theatre at the Grove in Nuangola, PA. When he is not in the theatre, he enjoys having long conversations about Disney, musicals or his dogs. Follow him @kelly_kriegs to see what’s next!

Dave Barrus (Music Director) (he/him) performed on Broadway and on the third national tour of Les Miserables, and the Broadway performance of Chess. Regional theater performances include The Boys Next Door at Connecticut Repertory Theatre—which won the Connecticut Critics Circle Award for Best Ensemble—the original company of Drift at Theatre Raleigh, Great Expectations at Utah Shakespeare Festival, Man of La Mancha at Arts Center of Coastal Carolina, the West Coast premiere of Songs From an Unmade Bed at Celebration Theatre in Los Angeles, Sweeny Todd at Pioneer Theatre and West Side Story at Sundance Theatre. He was awarded the Pearl award for Best New Artist and Best Male Vocalist for his albums Onstage and Onstage 2. He teaches voice at his private studios in New York City and Philadelphia and is a senior lecturer at University of the Arts. 

Steven Gross (Stage Manager) (he/they) is a queer multi-hyphenate theater maker currently studying Directing, Playwriting and Production at University of the Arts. Recent and current projects include Promenade (assistant music director/editor/designer, University of the Arts), Dear Edwina: Online Edition (stage manager, Little Theater Workshop) and Don't Stop Me (dramaturg, Polyphone Festival at UArts). He wants to thank everyone involved in The Last Five Years for their incredible dedication and hard work through the process!

Bryant Gipull Garcia (Musical Dramaturg) (he/him) is a sophomore Directing Playwriting and Production major. Bryant is absolutely proud of what the cast and crew have been able to pull off with this production. Past UArts credits include assistant director for Momentos by C Castro. Bryant also holds performance credits at the Orlando Repertory Theatre, St. Luke’s UMC, The Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, The Winter Park Playhouse, The Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando and more. Upcoming projects include Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue (stage manager) as well as an original, untitled underscored play that’s currently in workshop. Much love to la familia! @bazinga_derp

Jack McManus (Assistant Director) (he/him) is a writer, director and musician based… somewhere in the Northeast. His previous playwriting credits include A Play About… Lucas Hnath and Sparky: A New Musical, both of which debuted at New York Winterfest. His directing credits include GodspellThe Knight of the Burning Pestle, and The Untold Yippie Project. His music, especially with his band Nick and the Leg-Heavy Boys, is available anywhere music can be streamed. Follow @revjackmcmanus for more nonsense!

Joey Rice (Assistant Music Director) (he/him) is a sophomore Piano Performance major. This will actually be his fourth show with the Brind School. He would love to thank the creative team and cast for being so accommodating and collaborative throughout the process, in addition to his parents, who kindly put up with hearing him make rehearsal tracks during the day and sit on Zoom calls until 10 p.m., and then proceed to still make dinner.

Cali Wagner (Assistant Stage Manager) (she/her) is a sophomore Directing, Playwriting and Production major in her first semester at University of the Arts. She is very excited to be assistant stage managing her first show at the school with her new friends. Helping to create a show on Zoom has been one of the most fun and challenging things she has done in theater so far. 


Production Design

Marie Laster (Set and Props Design) (she/her) is a set designer born and raised in Philly. Scenic design credits include Untitled (Inis Nua Theatre), Cry it Out, Natural Shocks (Simpatico Theatre), Donna Orbits the Moon (Tiny Dynamite), The Agitators (Theatre Horizon), Rachel (Quintessence Theatre) and Looking Over the President's Shoulder (Act II Playhouse). Marie received a Bachelor of Architecture degree from Philadelphia University and enjoys channeling her creative energy through the scenic design process.  

LeVonne Lindsay (Costume Design) is the costume shop manager and adjunct assistant professor at University of the Arts. Education: BS in Fashion Design from Philadelphia University, MFA in Costume Design from the University of Maryland, College Park. Recent work: RagtimeGem of the Ocean (Arden Theater); Sweat (Philadelphia Theater Company); Kill, Move, Paradise (Wilma Theater). Awards/Honors: Barrymore Award for Outstanding Costume Design (2019), Allen Lee Hughes Fellow at Arena Stage (2001-2003).

Bless Rudisill (Lighting Design) is a Philadelphia-based lighting designer that hopes to connect with the many stories that are embedded within the city. Bless is interested in telling the many truths of queer and poc individuals in a respectful and unique way through the use of unconventional lighting equipment and practices. Bless is working to finish his BFA at University of the Arts in 2021 and hopes to continue to collaborate with artists throughout the region. 

Damien Figueras (Sound Design) (he/him) is a Philadelphia-based composer, music director and sound designer. He is a two-time Barrymore Award nominee (for his work on Moth at Azuka Theatre and for Antihero at Tribe of Fools). Damien is a proud member of the Theatrical Sound Designer and Composer Association (TSDCA). Select credits include Party Face (Off-Broadway), Meteor Shower (Walnut Street Theatre), Warplay (Azuka Theatre), Into the Woods (Resident Theatre Company), 12th Night (Shakespeare in Clark Park) and Natural Shocks (Simpatico Theatre).

Abby Martino (Graphic Design & Video Editing) (she/her) is a senior Graphic Design major at University of the Arts. For the past two years, Abby has served as the creative director for Theatre at the Grove. Abby is currently working on her senior capstone project in which she explores the impact COVID-19 has had on college students.

Joey Rice—Piano
Sarah Larsen—Violin
Emme Whisner—Cello

Michael Phillips
Liv Semel

Special Thanks
Adam Lenson
Robyn Honabach

Shout out to all the family, friends and roommates who supported all of us through this process and made space for our belting, cables and full production setups!!

University of the Arts

Kym Moore, Dean, Ira Brind School of Theater Arts
Amy Dugas Brown, Program Head, Directing, Playwriting, and Production
Katie Donovan, Program Head, Musical Theater
Natalie Robin, Program Head, Theater Design and Technology
Nick Embree, Set Practicum Instructor
LeVonne Lindsay, Costume Practicum Instructor
Larry Fowler, Sound Practicum Instructor
Lindsay Cram, Associate Producer
David Yager, President and CEO

Director's Note

“I believe the theatre should take advantage of the limitations of scenery and totally unlimited imagination of the person who is sitting in the audience. I like what the imagination does in the theatre.” -Harold Prince

A year ago I began planning a proposal for a senior thesis that looked completely different from the one you are about to view. From switching musicals, to changing production timelines, to exploring how to bring live musical theatre to a virtual setting; this production has been constantly evolving in ways I couldn’t anticipate. Though this piece isn’t what I originally envisioned, it has allowed my collaborators and me to experiment with form and execution more than any proposal or production I could have conceived. That being said, I am excited to share our production of The Last Five Years with you.

The Last Five Years follows a couple detailing the events of their failed relationship, one telling their story in chronological order, the other backwards. As we get a glimpse of the memories they hold of their time together, we see that there has always been a disconnect present between them, even in the seemingly connected moments. This story has always intrigued me because of its unusual structure, its exceptional score and most importantly, the universality of its story and characters. This universality, above all else, is what led this team through building this piece. Once I came across the option of directing this show, I immediately became curious about what it would mean to give the actors, who traditionally would not inhabit these characters, the agency to explore and redefine them. Through a semester-long deep dive into the music, text, and self, these four actors have cultivated wildly different interpretations of the two tracks in the show.

As this process begins to come to a close, I find myself even more grateful than ever before for the resilience of artists, in particular, the actors, creative team, designers and editors that joined in this collaboration. I have been inspired beyond measure by their bravery and artistry, and I know you will be too. 

Enjoy the show,
Kelly Krieger