Fiscal Sponsorship Project

The Next Act

The Next Act

Set against the controversy around transgender representations in media, four transgender artists explore authenticity in stage and screen through their own diverse experiences and viewpoints.

Our story follows four trans* women and their professional lives during and after their participation in the groundbreaking production, “Trans Scripts, Part 1: The Women”, written by Paul Lucas and produced by the American Repertory Theater. The play was scripted from more than 75 interviews conducted with transgender women around the world, with the goal of creating the most authentic representations ever put on the stage.

As these engaging, funny and talented women navigate their respective careers in various forms of media, audiences will be given the opportunity to get to know them in an intimate and perhaps unexpected way.

Our Cast:

MJ Rodriguez

MJ stars in the new Ryan Murphy series POSE for FX. She has performed the role of “Angel” in the Off-Broadway revival of Rent, and appeared in Dreamgirls, The Pajama Game, Once On This Island, the City Center Encores presentation of Runaways, and the recent Street Children. MJ has also made TV guest star appearances on Nurse Jackie, The Carrie Dairies on The CW Network, Netflix Original Series Luke Cage, as well as the feature film Saturday Church.

Bianca Leigh

Bianca is an actress, singer, writer and educator. A graduate of Rutgers University Mason Gross School of the Arts, her acting roles include “Mary Ellen” in the groundbreaking film TransAmerica, “Time/Wind” in Taylor Mac’s epic The Lily’s Revenge, “Franny Halcyon” in the New York and San Francisco workshops of the musical Tales of the City, “Tatiana” in Trans Scripts at the 2015 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, “Dr. Rachel Sandow” on Law & Order: SVU, and “Karma” in the feature film Hurricane Bianca. She wrote and performed her acclaimed solo musical BUSTED at the Laurie Beechman Theatre in 2012. Miss Leigh was profiled this year in Cranes New York for her work with students at NYU Medical School, and was the commencement speaker at Rutgers University’s Lavender Graduation in 2014. She recently participated, alongside MJ Rodriguez, in the Samuel French panel discussion “On Stage and Off: The State of Transgender Artists”. Bianca Leigh plays the role of “Alma” on the tv series Skeleton Crew. Bianca has also been writing a new play.

Rebecca Root

Rebecca is best known for playing Judy in BBC Two’s groundbreaking comedy series Boy Meets Girl. The second season was broadcast in summer 2016. Other screen credits include The Danish Girl, Hank Zipzer, Hollyoaks, Casualty, Midsummer Murders, and Keeping Up Appearances. Rebecca Root appears in the films: The Sisters Brothers with Jake Gyllenhal, and Colette with Keira Knightley; and has been cast in the upcoming television series Moominvalley with Rosamund Pike and Kate Winslet. She appeared in the award-winning production of Trans Scripts at the 2015 Edinburgh Festival Fringe and starred in the play 1977 for Radio 4. At the end of 2015 she was a guest on “Celebrity Mastermind,“ winning the contest with the specialist subject ‘the novels of Graham Greene.’ Rebecca is also a respected voice coach, gaining her MA in Voice Studies from the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. Rebecca is patron of the charities All About Trans and Diversity Role Models and is a passionate advocate for LGBT visibility, equal rights and societal acceptance.

Marlo Bernier

Marlo appeared as Roy Cohn (Best Actor 1998 City Paper/Baltimore) in Angels in America. Marlo performed in Love! Valour! Compassion! (John/James), God’s Country (Berg), Patient A (Lee), Largo Desolato (as Leopold), and Kindertransport (Ratcatcher, et al) at AXIS Theatre/Baltimore; and 9 Rooms Worth/Dead Parents (Jack/Sonny) and Lapis Blue-Blood Red (Cosimo) at Theatre Project/Baltimore. TV credits include guest starring roles on Cold Case, Las Vegas, Alias, and Homicide; and creating the title role of “Myrna” for a TV Pilot. Marlo is writer / director / producer of the films The Last Time We Were (Silver Remi WorldFest/Houston award as writer-producer), Stealth, Finding John Smith, and LEAP. Marlo Bernier also starred in Transparent’s episode “Pinkwashing Machine”.


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