KAREN LEE PICKETT Artistic Director
Karen received her classical theatre training at the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art in London, England.
A recognized award-winning artist with over 25 years’ experience as an actor, director, producer, teacher and playwright, Karen’s credits include work with Deep Ellum Ensemble in New York City, Dallas Theater Center, Yale Repertory Theatre, the English Theatre of Berlin and the Dublin Gay and Lesbian International Theatre Festival. Her Shakespeare roles span Lady Macbeth to Adriana in Comedy of Errors to Malvolio in Twelfth Night. She has appeared locally in productions with Intrepid Theatre, Theatre SKAM, Langham Court Theatre, Victoria Operatic Society, William Head on Stage, Theatre Inconnu, and Giggling Iguana. This is her eighth season with the GVSF.
As artistic director of the Festival, Karen brings a vision to provide local actors the opportunity to grow their craft and excite audiences by making Shakespeare accessible to all.
CANDACE WOODLAND General Manager
Candace Woodland is a graduate of the Canadian College of Performing Arts and a current student in Sociology and Social Justice at the University of Victoria. Her love of theatre began with her love of performing, but after co-founding and taking on the role of marketing director for Rebel Knock Out Productions in 2014 and 2015, and working as the volunteer coordinator for the Victoria Fringe Festival in 2016, she found she also enjoyed using her academic skills behind the scenes in the world of theatre administration. After four seasons of performing with the Greater Victoria Shakespeare Festival, Candace is excited to come on board as one of the two new General Managers of the company.
BRIAN QUAKENBUSH General Manager
Brian is new to beautiful British Columbia and the Greater Victoria Shakespeare Festival. He hails from a frozen cornfield, south of the border in Michigan. He received his B.A. in Theatre and Philosophy from Grand Valley State University, where he was a recipient of the Shakespeare Scholarship. While there, he played such notable Shakespearean roles as Bassanio in The Merchant of Venice, Dromio of Syracuse in Comedy of Errors, and Caliban in The Tempest (for which he won a Grand Award for Most Outstanding Supporting Actor).
He honed his writing and music skills in the mossy dampness of greater Seattle, where he co-wrote, and played Ben Gunn in Treasure Island the Musical, and played Dr. Sanderson in Harvey, Renfield in Dracula, as well as directed some radio-theatre.
For the past decade, he’s been basking in the sunshine of the Bay Area in California, where he played countless roles, wrote dozens of short plays, directed, did scenic design, and produced for his independent-theatre companies: Battle Stache Studios and Round Belly Theater Company, as well as with SHOTZ SF, Piano Fight, Theater Pub, Actors Ensemble Berkeley, Quixotic Players, Footloose Dance Company, The Thick Rick Ones, and Awesome Theater.