MIMI'S full BIO
(But if you don't have time to read all this verbiage - and who does? -- just scroll down to resumes)
Early career -- Bay area
After graduating from Antioch College (Ohio) with a BA in Theatre, and from The Drama Studio, London, Mimi won her first professional audition as an actress, and joined BERKELEY REPERTORY THEATRE.
For the next 5 years, she acted in many Bay Area theatres, as well as in regional theatre, musicals, original plays, street theatre, commercials, industrials and voice-overs.
Her favourite work was with R.G.Davis, founder of the SF MIME TROUPE and EPIC WEST. Davis introduced Mimi to the plays of Bertolt Brecht and his composers (Kurt Weill, Hans Eisler and Paul Dessau) whose influence marked her own work when she became a composer and lyricist in the 80s. But before then, Mimi also hosted her own interview show on PACIFICA RADIO in Berkeley, and won a broadcasting award for public service announcing.
After moving to LA in the 80s with her then-husband, TV director Nicholas Stein, Mimi was cast in an award-winning production of SCWEYK IN THE SECOND WORLD WAR, directed by Tony Abatemarco.
Next she played Cecily Pigeon (across from Nancy Lenehan) in a national tour of, THE ODD COUPLE, featuring Sherman Hemsley, star of TV's, The Jeffersons.
Back in L.A., she studied improvisation at THE GROUNDLINGS and joined BREW HA HA -- an improv company latterly directed by "the mother of improvisation", Viola Spolin. Shelley Du Val and Eric Eidle chose the company to play the supporting parts in FAERIETALE THEATRE, for Showtime TV.
Mimi was also a writer-performer-teacher for MARK TAPER FORM's IMPROVISATIONAL THEATRE PROJECT for 2 seasons, working with producer, Phillip Himberg and directors, Jack Bender (The Sopranos) and Peter Brocius. Fellow actors included: Forest Whitaker, Larry Wilmore, Michael Arabian, Laura Fanning, Victoria Lewis, Socorro Valdez, etc.
Next, she co-created the long-running acapella musical, BRAIN HOTEL with colleagues Tony Abatemarco, Mark Bringleson, Bill Castellino and Jane Shulman. The show won a number of press awards, including the NEW DIRECTIONS IN THEATRE AWARD, created especially in response to Brain Hotel by the LA WEEKLY to honor exceptional originality in Theatre.
After that, she conceived and composed WAZO WAZO and SEE BELOW MIDDLE SEA (starring B.D. Wong) ~ 2 non-verbal choral pieces, produced by the LA Theatre Works and Mark Taper Forum's Taper, respectively.
She also acted in Joanne Akalaitus's GREEN CARD at Mark Taper Forum with an outstanding cast: Alma Martinez, Costulo Gavras, Jessie Nelson, Raye Birk, Rosalind Chao, Jorge Gaban, Jessie Borrego, etc. and she garnered BEST ACTING awards from LA Weekly and DRAMA LOGUE for her performance in John O'Keefe's play, GHOSTS, at the Burbage Theatre.
In her volunteer life, Mimi created an arts program for abused children at Mac Claren Hall School in partnership with their teacher, also a theatre artist, Alistair Hunter. Thanks to Susan Lowenberg and Sarah Maltsby, producers of LA THEATRE WORKS, she later received grants from the CALIFORNIA ARTS COUNCIL and the project grew to include other artist-teachers and to be offered in a number of high security camps for teenaged felons.
In the late '80s , Mimi moved to Paris for the first time, where she directed and acted in plays and voice-overs in French and English . She also taught acting and singing at the University of Paris Jussieu for 3 years and improvisation at Ecole Merouze professional actors' training program.
After performing a solo piece by Wallace Shawn, THE FEVER, directed Eve Pearce (formerly with the Royal Shakespeare Co), Mimi gave up acting in favor of her work as a writer-composer and coach.
"home again" -- L.A.
Mimi returned from France in '92, when director, Mark Bringleson, created a show using a number of Mimi's texts and songs, BLUE CORRIDOR. It gleaned rave reviews at the then-new Los Angeles Playwrights' Arena, produced by Jon Lawrence Rivera. A second version was co-produced by Jon and The Odyssey Theatre.
In 1993, Mimi was commissioned to create lyrics from Jean Paul Sartre's translation of THE TROJAN WOMEN as well as music for the chorus. The show starred Mariette Hartley and Angela Paton and was directed by Michael Arabian. Michael and Mimi won OVATION AWARD nominations for 'BEST ADAPTATION'.
Dear 'ole dirty Dublin
Mimi moved to Dublin in 1996. She found work immediately at Kevin McHugh's Dublin School of Acting and soon after, was hired to teach at Trinity College Dublin.
By the end of four years in Ireland, she had taught at University College Dublin MA in Theatre program, The National Theatre of Ireland (workshops); Dundalk Arts Collective and Allihies Language Center.
She also started writing her satire on cosmetic surgery, BODY WITHOUT BONES, building the piece with former members of the Marcel Marceau Company who had relocated in Ireland.
Dublin was kind to Mimi and she directed a number of voice recordings for Film and TV and did many voice overs as an actress as well, including a guide track for Helen Hunt in an animation directed by John Stevenson (of The Hensen Co.)
She also composed music for director Lilly Susan Todd's GOOD PERSON OF SEZUAN at Samuel Beckett Centre, performed by the 3rd year (graduating class) students from the Acting Track of Trinity College Dublin. She also composed and choreographed their musical numbers in their end-of-year-show at The Abbey Theatre.
Back to L.A. yet again!
From 2000 - 2007, Mimi ran her own vocal program in Song Performance: VOICE MADE VISIBLE.
Class and show accompanists: Louis Durra, Rich Eames, and Nicholas Fryman.
Every class did public performances accompanied by Louis or Nick with bass players and drummers from well-known bands, including: Chazz Frichtel, who played for Michael Mac Donald and Chuck Maggione; MB Gordy of the Doobie Brothers, Rita Coolidge Group, and in 2019, a Grammy winner for OPIUM MOON.; and Matt Gordy, drummer with Aretha Franklin.
Mimi also wrote and composed her biggest play to date, a 3 Act Musical, THE ABDUCTION OF LADY WEN CHI which she re-wrote in 2012 with input from Lee Breuer, one of the most visionary writer-directors in American Theatre. Excerpts from the first version were performed at the Japanese American National Museum starring Jennifer Paz (of Broadway's MISS SAIGON) and Orville Mendoza, produced by Judy Soo Hoo with East West Players
The South of France and New York City:
From 2007-09 Mimi studied devotional HINDUSTANI CHANT with master singer and tabla player, Sri Hanuman
Back in NYC she studied playwriting with LEE BREUER at The Flea Theatre, and taught Voice and Singing out of Pearl Studios in midtown Manhattan.
Her spring-winter love story between a wealthy white recording artist and a working class, Hispanic truck-driver, CONVERSATIONS WITH THE WATER MAN , was presented at The Actors Studio, NYC directed by Darrell Larsen, and again in 2015, directed by Mimi at The Altadena Library in L.A.
AGAIN! Los Angeles 2014-17
Mimi produced a reading series of several of her plays at Altadena Library. Actors included: Laurie O'Brien,
Matias Ponce, Jan Munroe, Melinna Bobadilla, Joseph Casorla, Anna Mathias and Lily Knight.
BODY WITHOUT BONES, her satire on plastic surgery (a play-with-music, composed by Matthew Goldsby) was given a reading with songs at Skylight Theatre in the spring of 2015, as part of their INKubator Series. It featured actors John Allee, O-Lan Jones, Anna Mathias and Jessica Rao. Directed by Julianne Just.
A musical work - in - progress, THE MUSIC MEDICINE SHOW (excerpt) was performed at STUDIO STAGE THEATRE in L.A. in April 2015. with singers Marianne Lewis, Roxanne Mayweather, Natalie Fryman, Kerry Keiko Carnahan, Tony Gonzalez, Cade Parenti, Chris Acuff and T.K. Krupa. Keyboards: Nick Fryman and Mimi. Perc: MB Gordy.
(It just occurred to me that the resumes are too long, too...So ...keep scrolling!)
Equity Reading ~ July 2015 at Altadena Library, Altadena CA
With Mimi Seton and Richard Casorla
An elderly survivor of the London Bliz dies of cancer in a Connecticut retirement home. This play is a journey through her inner landscape of morphine dreams, memories of betrayal ~ and the struggle to reconcile her life choices.
CONVERSATIONS WITH THE WATER MAN
Equity READING ~ 2015, Altadena Library, Altadena CA, dir by Mimi
Equity READING ~ 2011, The Actors' Studio, NYC dir by Darrell Larsen
With Laurie O'Brien and Melinna Theatrina
A spring - autumn love story that challenges boundaries of race, class and culture
Equity READING ~ Aug. 2015, The Culture Project NYC
With Mimi Lieber and June Gable, directed by Mimi
Equity READING ~ Nov. 2015 at Altadena Library, Altadena CA
With Anna Mathias and Lily Knight, directed by Mimi
Two best friends from college, both humorous New Yorkers now over 60, reunite to lend each other a hand in a tough time for each of them.
BODY WITHOUT BONES ~ c. 2014 Revised April 2015
READING with MUSIC: SKYLIGHT THEATRE'S INK UBATOR SERIES
With John Allee, O-Lan Jones, Anna Mathias and Jessica Rao
Directed by Julianne Just
An expressionistic satire of cosmetic surgery bordering on the Grand Gignol.
Written by Seton and composed by Matthew Goldsby with melodies by Seton
* The first version of the play was developed in Dublin in 2000 with members of the Marcel Marceau Company.
THE ABDUCTION OF LADY WEN CHI ~ c. 2006 ~ revised 2011-15
A 3-Act "Theatre Concert" requiring 10 gifted actor-singers and 4 musicians
The story follows the privileged daughter of a Chinese scholar-statesman who was kidnapped by Mongol invaders at the end of the Han Dynasty. She lived among them in the desert for 12 years and had 2 sons by the tribal chief, before being rescued by a Chinese ransom party.
STAGED READING WITH SONGS: presented by Japanese American National Museum working with East West Players.
Special Events Series. Featured Jennifer Paz (star of MISS SAIGON) in the title role.
PRIVATE READING TEXT ONLY: Los Angeles Theatre Center. Starring June Angela (Tony nominee for SHOGUN)
GOOD PERSON OF SEZUAN ~ 2000, Dublin
Samuel Beckett Center, Dublin. Directed by Lilly Susan Todd.
Commission ~ composer, music director and accompanist.
TROJAN WOMEN ~ 1993 ~ Insite Productions CBS TV- LOT
Starring Mariette Hartley and Angela Paton. Directed by Michael Arabian. Commission. Mimi adapted the Jean Paul Sartre translation into contemporary lyrics and composed the vocal music for the chorus.
She received an LA Ovation Award nomination for Best Adaptation.
HOME FOR CHRISTMAS~ 1995, Pasadena Playhouse.
Commission. Directed by Bill Castellino. Mimi wrote lyrics and music for the show’s opening number.
BLUE CORRIDOR ~1993, Los Angeles Playwright’s Arena
Produced by Jon Rivera, directed by Mark Bringleson who compiled songs and writings of Mimi Seton into a new show. Mimi won the Best Music Award from Drama Logue.
SEE BELOW MIDDLE SEA ~ 1987, Mark Taper Forum’s Taper, Too.
Starring B.D. Wong. Multi-media piece uniting non-verbal operatic singing, photography, and modern dance to look at the issue of sound pollution. Seton ~ writer-composer and director.
SIR VIVAL’S SWEEPSTAKES ~ 1986, Mark Taper Forum.
A musical originated for Jacques D’Amboise Dance Program, featuring 120 children from the LA Unified School District. Seton was one of 4 artists who co-wrote and co-directed the event. Tony Abatemarco was the artistic director, and
John Ritter starred in her segment.
SUPPERMAN ~ 1985, Los Angeles Museum of Science and Industry.
Commission. An educational play on the subject of Nutrition, written by Seton.
WAZO WAZO ~ 1984. Produced by LA Theatre Works with Rene Auberjonois
A non-verbal opera, accompanied by Don Preston, synthesizer player for Frank Zappa’s Mothers of Invention. Directed by Tony Abatemarco. Mimi Seton: Creator-Composer. Production Awards ~ LA Weekly and DramaLogue
SCHOOL TALK ~ 1982, Mark Taper Forum’s Improvisational Theatre Project
A musical for teens created by the cast, including Forest Whitaker, Bill Hunt,
Socorro Valdez and Mimi Seton. Music by Jeff Hull with additional song by Seton.
BRAIN HOTEL ~ 1980-83 Odyssey Theatre Poets In Performance Series; Cast Theatre; Olympic Arts Festival.
Seton was co-writer-composer and one of 2 actress-singers in the piece.
Best Actress and Best Writer Awards from both LA Weekly and Drama Logue.
WOMEN SING BRECHT ~ 1978
Theatre of Man, San Francisco. Co-creator, singer.
Created by the cast. Dramaturg: Susan Lyne
TEACHER / COACH
Private Voice and English Conversation Coach, Paris, 2018
Private Acting and Voice coach, LA 2014-2015
Voice, Singing and Acting coach, Pearl Studios, NYC 2010-13
Dramatic Writing Workshop at Screen Actors Guild (SAG) NYC 2012/13
Private voice and singing coach, Nice, France 2007-9
Political Songwriting workshop - facilitator at USC 2006
VOICE MADE VISIBL - creator and teacher of singing performance, Los Angeles 2002-2007
UCLA Extension -- Finding Your Voice 2004- 7
Studio Group Theatre, L.A. -- Voice For The Actor; Vocal Characterization 2006
Lee Strassberg Studios (summer program substitute teacher only) Accent Reduction for foreign students 2002
Trinity College Dublin BA in Theatre Programme -- Singing; Monologue Preparation (Auditioning) 1997-2000
University College Dublin MA in Theatre program -- Voice for the Actor (substituting for Kevin Crawford) 1998
Dublin School of Acting -- Acting (The Actioning System); Singing Technique 1997 - 2000
The Arts Initiative of Dundalk, Northern Ireland -- Voice for the Actor 1998 - 2000
Allihies Language Center, Co. Cork, Ireland -- Singing (students from Paris Conservatory of Music) 1993 and 1997
University of Paris, Jussieu -- Acting, Voice, Singing, Improvisation 1990 - 93
Atlantique TV Productions-- Paris. Accent Reduction coach for French actors on TV in English speaking roles 1992
Ecole Merouze Professional Acting School, Paris -- Improvisation for Actors 1990 - 92
Stages Tri-lingual Theatre, Los Angeles -- Experimental Voice workshops 1986
Mark Taper Forum’s Improvisational Theatre Project (teaching workshops in high schools in Theatre Techniques) 1982 - 5
The Learning Tree, L.A. -- Theatre Techniques (Acting, Directing) 1982
Voice-over actor, director, producer - highlights
Cartoon voices for DISNEY, DIC, HANNA BARBERA (Los Angeles); ANTENNE DEUX (Paris), MAGMA FILMS Galway, etc.
Title roles in 2 European animated series: KIMBO and the long-running, VIKI THE VIKING.
Mimi directed the recorded voices for the series, NORMAN NORMAL and episodes of FLIPPER (Magma Films, Galway).
Commercials -- Clorox, Banque de France, Datsun, Guinness, Dior, Lancome, Orlane, Phyto Laboratoire, etc.
Educational tapes -- Hachete Publishers, Paris
Public service spots -- Bay Area Water Conservation; Planned Parenthood; Medecins Sans Frontieres, etc.
Industrials -- Renault, Universal Studios, Jane Fonda's Workout, etc.
Guide tracks -- Helen Hunt (dir by John Stevenson) and Kathy Bates (for Wendy Apple's film, FINAL CUT)
Film dubbing -- the voices of Catherine Deneuve, Marie Christine Barrault, and dozens of others
V.O. for TV: TRACY ULLMAN SHOW, REAL PEOPLE, SILVER SPOONS
She was the female announcer for PLAYBOY TV (1986) .
awards and grants
Best Acting, GHOSTS, LA Weekly
Best Acting, GHOSTS, Drama-Logue
Best Music, Best Production, BLUE CORRIDOR, Drama-Logue
Best Adaptation, TROJAN WOMEN, LA Ovation Award nominee
Best Music, WAZO WAZO, LA Weekly (also won production awards)
Best Writing, BRAIN HOTEL, LA Weekly
Best Writing, BRAIN HOTEL, Drama-Logue
Best Acting, BRAIN HOTEL, LA Weekly
Best Acting, BRAIN HOTEL, Drama-Logue
NEW DIRECTIONS IN THEATRE AWARD ~ BRAIN HOTEL, LA Weekly
an award created by the paper to honor BRAIN HOTEL’s exceptional originality
Rockefeller Grant for Music Composition, 1986, through LA Theatre Works
3 California Arts Council grants for Artists in Social Institutions, through LA Theatre Works
BA Theatre Arts - Atioch College Ohio
MA in Psychological Counseling (in process) Pacifica Grad. Institute
Ph.D. in Integrated Healing (in process) Barron University, L.A.
Composing for Film: UCLA Ext.
Composing for Theatre: Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop, BMI (by audition), NYC
Playwriting: Marie Irene Fornes, Theatre for the New City, NYC
Playwriting: Lee Breuer, The Moth Theatre, NYC
Voice: Nika Kossenkova ~ Moscow Experimental Opera (Paris workshops)
Voice and Feldenkreiss: Francois Combeau of La Voix Vocale, Paris
Ear training: Centre Tomatis, Paris
Pop and Theatre Singing: Seth Riggs, Los Angeles
Leider Singing: Lillian Loran, Berkeley CA
South Indian Singing: The New School, NYC
History of Jazz: The New School, NYC
Nada Yoga . (Hindustani devotional chant): Master Sri Hanuman, Nice, France
Jazz Harmony and Jazz Rhythm (3 levels): Dick Grove School of Jazz
Acting: Paul Richards and John Argue, Berkeley CA
License: NLP practitioner (the brainchild of Cognitive Therapy)
Mimi has 3 albums for sale on CDBaby.com: N A K E D and T O T E M are solo piano improvisations, generally in the JAZZ genre, and THE BRIDGE OF ETHERS, an album of Indian-influenced chant for use in yoga classes.
Original cast and crew of BLUE CORRIDOR at PLAYWRIGHTS' ARENA, produced by Jon Lawrence Rivera, Dir/Created by Mark Bringleson
Voice Made Visible students in L.A. -- from Mexico, Germany, Brazil, Japan, USA, and Iran. (With Mimi on the left)
CARTOON VOICE DEMO
COMMERCIAL VOICE DEMO
Totem ... piano improvisations by mimi seton
tel: (+33) 6. 89. 04. 99. 87.
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