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What You Are

May 30 - June 30

Sheryl and Harvey White Theatre
Conrad Prebys Theatre Center

What You Are


By JC Lee
Directed by Patricia McGregor

Don scrapes together a living and struggles to support his family through hard work and good intentions. But everything around him, from his younger co-workers, to the technology in his office job, to even his own opinionated daughter, seems alien to the certainties and stabilities he once knew. When a simple misunderstanding at work escalates into an all-out confrontation, Don hatches a plan to set right all the things he feels have gone wrong. Can the people who love him manage to hold him together? JC Lee’s Globe-commissioned world premiere is a riveting, of-the-moment exploration of the personal struggles that accompany sweeping social change. Contains strong language.

Production Sponsors
Paula and Brian Powers

Running time: One hour and 35 minutes. There is no intermission.


Cast and Creative



JC Lee (Playwright)writes for theatre, film, and television. His play Luce received its world premiere at Lincoln Center Theater (with development supported by The Old Globe), and he co-wrote the film adaptation, starring Octavia Spencer and Naomi Watts, that premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival. His other plays include Relevance (MCC Theater), warplay (New Conservatory Theatre Center), and Pookie Goes Grenading (Azuka Theatre). He has received commissions from The Old Globe, South Coast Repertory, Manhattan Theatre Club, Second Stage Theater, The Playwrights Realm, and New Conservatory Theatre Center. His television credits include Apple’s new “The Morning Show” starring Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston, “How to Get Away with Murder,” “Looking,” and “Girls.” He is currently adapting Stephen King’s “Bad Little Kid” into a feature film for Chernin Entertainment. Mr. Lee is a graduate of Bloomsburg University and The Juilliard School. @jclee1230.

Patricia McGregor (Director) is an acclaimed director and writer from St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands. Her directing credits include A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Measure for Measure (The Old Globe’s Globe for All Tour), Lights Out: Nat “King” Cole (also book) and Skeleton Crew (Geffen Playhouse), Place (Brooklyn Academy of Music), Good Grief (Center Theatre Group), The Parchman Hour (Guthrie Theater), Hamlet (The Public Theater), Ugly Lies the Bone (Roundabout Theatre Company), A Raisin in the Sun, The Winter’s Tale, and Spunk (California Shakespeare Theater), and Hurt Village (Signature Theatre Company). For several years Ms. McGregor directed The 24 Hour Plays on Broadway. Additionally she was consultant for J. Cole’s 4 Your Eyez Only tour. She is a Paul & Daisy Soros Fellow and a New York Theatre Workshop Usual Suspect. She is also the co-founder of Angela’s Purse and with her artist/activist sister Paloma McGregor, and she was Artistic Director of Yale Cabaret.

Rachel Myers (Scenic Design) is a designer for stage, film, and live events. Her regional credits include Geffen Playhouse (2019 Ovation Award for Best Scenic Design for Skeleton Crew), Center Theatre Group, South Coast Repertory, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Shakespeare Theatre Company, Getty Villa, The Watermill Center, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Rattlestick West, IAMA Theatre Company, Boston Court Pasadena, and VS. Theatre Company. Her award-winning experiential design company, 3 Penny Design, has conceived and produced live events, brand activations, and interiors for Crayola in Times Square, the Emmy Awards, the Golden Globe Awards, VidCon, and more. Her film Wendy’s Shabbat premiered at the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival and was broadcast on PBS. Her production-design credits include the films Kim Possible (Disney),the award-winning Short Term 12, and The Drowning, as well as television series for Hulu, MTV, Netflix, Lionsgate, and Lifetime. She is currently in production on the feature film Desperados for Netflix. She received her M.F.A. from Yale School of Drama, and she is a member of Art Directors Guild Local 800 and United Scenic Artists Local 829. 3pennydesign.com, rachelmyersdesign.com.

Elisa Benzoni (Costume Design) is thrilled to be back designing for The Old Globe, where she previously designed Constellations and where she has designed the fall show with The Old Globe and University of San Diego Shiley Graduate Theatre Program for the past five years. She has worked all over Southern California as well as internationally. Her select credits include Sex with Strangers (Geffen Playhouse), Photograph 51 (South Coast Repertory), The Who & The What, Our Town, Tall Girls, Brahman/i, and Sam Bendrix at the Bon Soir (La Jolla Playhouse), Sweat and Aubergine (San Diego Repertory Theatre), Chapatti (Laguna Playhouse), and Hedwig and the Angry Inch, The Hour of Great Mercy, The Loneliest Girl in the World, The Happiest Place on Earth, Ballast, The Mystery of Love and Sex, and Homos, or Everyone in America (Diversionary Theatre). Ms. Benzoni has also been the resident designer at North Coast Repertory Theatre for three years, working on Craig Noel Award–nominated productions. She holds a Costume Design M.F.A. from UC San Diego. elisabenzoni.com.

Sherrice Mojgani (Lighting Design) recently designed Skeleton Crew (The Old Globe), The Heiress and Two Trains Running (Arena Stage), Ain’t Misbehavin’ and The Scottsboro Boys (Signature Theatre Company), Roz and Ray, Black Pearl Sings, and Outside Mullingar (San Diego Repertory Theatre), and Blue Door, Trouble in Mind and Mud Blue Sky (MOXIE Theatre). Ms. Mojgani is an Assistant Professor at George Mason University in northern Virginia. She holds a B.A. in Theater Arts from UC Santa Cruz and an M.F.A. in Lighting Design from UC San Diego. smojgani.com.

Luqman Brown (Sound Design) designed The Corpse Washer, How to Defend Yourself, and We’ve Come to Believe and created original music for Everybody Black, all for the 2019 Humana Festival. His regional theatre credits include Detroit ’67 (The Juilliard School), Skeleton Crew (TheatreSquared), The Three Musketeers (Classical Theatre of Harlem), The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity (Asolo Repertory Theatre), Sense & Sensibility (Cape Fear Regional Theatre), The Parchman Hour (Guthrie Theater), and Adoration of the Old Woman (INTAR Theatre). His Off Broadway credits include Revolving Cycles Truly and Steadily Roll’d (The Duke on 42nd Street) and Hurt Village (Signature Theatre Company). Mr. Brown won both the 2017 and 2018 AUDELCO Awards for Sound Design. As a professional musician, he has performed in numerous bands and produced many others. luqmanbrown.nyc.

Henry Russell Bergstein, CSA (Casting) cast Broadway’s The Lyons, and he has cast Off Broadway for Vineyard Theatre, where his productions include Good Grief, Harry Clarke, Gloria (also Goodman Theatre), Dot, The Landing, Can You Forgive Her?, Kid Victory (also Signature Theatre Company), Arlington, The North Pool, Outside People, Checkers, Middletown, The Metal Children, Wig Out, Somewhere Fun, and Picked. His other New York theatre credits include Small Mouth Sounds (with Lauren Port; Ars Nova, Off Broadway), The Wildness and the original production of Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 (Ars Nova), Preludes (with David Caparelliotis; LCT3), 3C (Rattlestick Playwrights Theater), and Gorilla Man (PS122). He also cast for Sundance Institute Theatre Lab for five seasons. Mr. Bergstein’s television credits include “Black Mirror” (U.S. casting), Comedy Central’s “The Other Two” (with Allison Estrin), HBO’s “Succession,” and Amazon’s “Mozart in the Jungle” (with Douglas Aibel). His film credits include Saturday Church (Tribeca Film Festival 2017); Beauty Mark (LA Film Festival 2017); It Felt Like Love (Sundance NEXT FEST 2013); and 3rd Street Blackout; as well as Love After Love (Tribeca 2017), Grandma, How to Talk to Girls at Parties (Cannes Film Festival 2017), and November Criminals (all with Mr. Aibel); and Spider-Man Homecoming (New York casting, with Ms. Estrin). Mr. Bergstein also cast the first two seasons of the podcast “Homecoming.”

Chandra R.M. Anthenill (Production Stage Manager) has worked on the Globe productions of Tiny Beautiful Things, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Twelfth Night (Globe for All), Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax, A Thousand Splendid Suns, Guys and Dolls, Camp David, and The Comedy of Errors. Her credits as production stage manager include Fun Home, Beachtown, Roz & Ray, Into the Beautiful North, R. Buckminster Fuller: THE HISTORY (and Mystery) OF THE UNIVERSE, Outside Mullingar, The Oldest Boy, Everybody’s Talkin’: The Music of Harry Nilsson, Oedipus El Rey, and Honky (San Diego Repertory Theatre), The Last Wife, Bad Jews, Sons of the Prophet, True West, Fool for Love, Spring Awakening, Assassins, and Company (Cygnet Theatre Company), and Pippin (Diversionary Theatre). Her credits as assistant stage manager include Junk: The Golden Age of Debt (La Jolla Playhouse); In the Next Room, or the vibrator play; The Who’s Tommy; Walter Cronkite Is Dead; Tortilla Curtain;and Zoot Suit (San Diego Repertory Theatre); and Dirty Blonde (Cygnet Theatre Company). Ms. Anthenill is a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association.


Vicki and Carl Zeiger Insights Seminars

This series provides Old Globe patrons with an opportunity to closely connect with productions both onstage and backstage. A panel selected from the artistic company of each show (playwrights, actors, directors, designers, and/or technicians) engages patrons in an informal and illuminating presentation of ideas and insights to enhance the theatre going experience. Each Insights Seminar takes place 90 minutes before curtain time on the Tuesday after performances begin, and includes an informal reception 30 minutes before the start. FREE; no reservations necessary.

Tuesday, June 4, 2019 at 5:30 p.m.


Post-Show Forums

Join us after the show for an informal and enlightening question-and-answer session with cast members. Get the "inside story" on creating a character and putting together a professional production. Post-show forums are scheduled after select Tuesday and Wednesday evening performances. FREE; no reservations necessary.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Wednesday, June 26, 2019


Subject Matters

Explore the ideas and issues raised by a production through brief, illuminating post-show discussions with local experts, such as scientists, artists, historians and scholars. Subject Matters will ignite discussion, bring the play's concerns into sharp focus, and encourage you to think beyond the stage! Subject Matters discussions follow select Saturday matinee performances. FREE; no reservations necessary.

Saturday, June 8, 2019


“Boldly probes of-the-moment issues. Director Patricia McGregor, an off-Broadway powerhouse, keeps the tension thrumming while also doing justice to playwright JC Lee’s cutting humor. She gets strong performances out of her cast as well.” —The San Diego Union-Tribune

What You Are is highly engaging in the moment, and it becomes even richer as one thinks about it afterward.” —Talkin’ Broadway

“A tour-de-force production! You don’t want to miss What You Are.” —The San Diego Voice & Viewpoint