By Rachel Teagle
Directed by Joshua M. Feder

Childhood dreams have all come true, and the world is full of astronauts, ballerinas, and princesses. It’s a glorious new world for everyone but Jess, who wanted to be a mastodon when she grew up. An offbeat comedy about ambition, vocation, and restlessness.

January 24-27, 2024
Jackie Liebergott Black Box 

All performances open to the public

Run Time: 100 minutes, no intermission

Content Advisory: This play contains guns and sounds of gunfire, a reference to domestic violence, discussions of terminal illness, homophobic microaggressions, and racially insensitive language.

Sensory Advisory: TBA

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Production Photos by Craig Bailey/Perspective Photo. View full album.

Creative Team

Scenic Design

Harvey Johnson

Costume Design

Ariana Dookhran

Lighting Design

Mia Moore

Sound Design

Jo Williams

Props Lead

Lauren Corcuera


Delene Beauchamp


Grace DiNatale


Kailey Pelletier


Sofia Lindgren Galloway

A note from the
Director, Joshua M. Feder

“I want you to dream enormous dreams”

“What do you want to be when you grow up?” is one of the most common questions young people are asked, along with their favorite color or favorite animal. On the surface, it’s a simple question about a child’s interests. But thinking about it a little more deeply, it’s the most profound question any of us can ask ourselves. Wanting to be a doctor, or a teacher, or an artist may simply be something that sounds exciting to a 5-year-old, but becomes a fundamental part of who we are as adults; what we want to do – and who we want to be – determines how we spend our time, how we see the world, and how we fit into our communities at large. 

While many of us end up finding more “practical” career paths than we dreamed up when we were young, Rachel Teagle’s The Impracticality of Modern-Day Mastodons asks what might happen if we got to live out those early, ambitious desires. What is the world like when we all get to be ballerinas, astronauts, spies, and princesses? What does it mean to suddenly have these opportunities and responsibilities, without any training or preparation? Is it everything we hoped for?

And then there’s Jess. She did not dream of a specific job or position in society. She dreamed of being a mastodon. While everyone around her gets to live out their childhood fantasies, Jess has become someone who fundamentally should not exist right now. As she tells her “vocational advisor” when trying to find her place in this new world, “I was not a practical child.”

Her childhood fascination with a prehistoric beast made her dreams too big for the reality of adult life; are those enormous dreams still too big in this new world? What should she do now, as someone whose identity doesn’t fit in with those around her, in this world where everyone else seems to be living out their “happily ever afters”?

Many of us have found ourselves at similar crossroads. It can be difficult to be different from others; it can be lonely to have dreams that people deem impractical, or identities that people think should not exist. We may not fit in, and we may feel out of place, but we must keep going forward and forging our own journeys, regardless of the prescribed paths around us. And maybe, just maybe, if we search long enough, we might find other impractical children with equally enormous dreams. As Jess learns, “The world has many hidden places, if you take the time to look.”

A note from the
Dramaturg, Sofia Lindgren Galloway

“But what do we really do?”

This phrase is echoed multiple times throughout the play by our protagonist, Jess. As the world shifts and everyone around her seems to find their place in it, Jess’s question asks more than “How do we spend our time” but asks us to consider the quality and purpose of the time spent at our jobs. It asks us to consider more than what we do, but our vocation in life. So, I ask you, dear audience, what is your dream vocation? Who do you want to be? Better yet, who DID you want to be when you were young – before anyone told you you were impractical?

In preparation for this play, I had the pleasure of interviewing the playwright (and my dear friend) Rachel Teagle. The transcription service I used flagged the most common words from our conversation. “Wonder,” was one of the top words. A sense of wonder is at the core of this production, not only in theme, but in how it must be approached. In rehearsals, I observed how wonder and exploration fueled the cast and creative team’s process. 

Wondering or daydreaming is NOT a practical pursuit. It is time-consuming, uncertain, and hard to explain to others. But despite the impracticality, this play is a celebration of wonder, reflection, and dreaming. It asks us to imagine what could happen when our big, impossible wishes come true. This play is ambitious and impractical. Maybe, the impracticality of mastodons, and the persistence of OUR Mastodon, teaches us something about what it means to be an artist, an explorer, a dreamer. As you watch this play, and on your way home, I hope you feel compelled to reflect on your dreams, and maybe make some big new wishes of your own.

Meet the

Clarence / Clint & Chorus – SPENCER DANIEL
Delores & Chorus – ZOE HALPERIN
Pat / Thomas Jefferson & Chorus – ALEXANDER SERINO
Tracy / Comte de Buffon & Chorus – ARIEL COLEMAN
Inga / Charles Wilson Peale & Chorus – ANNA BAKER
Buster / History Narrator & Chorus – ASA DUPRAS
Paula / Paleontologist 1 / Lewis & Chorus – DAKOTA FRYE
Norman / Paleontologist 2 / Clark & Chorus – CHAD FRUSCIONE


Clarence / Clint & Chorus – CHAD FRUSCIONE
Inga & Others / Delores & Others / Chorus – JULIET SIMON
Tracy & Others / Paula & Others / Chorus – BRIDGET DEVINE
Pat & Others / Norman & Others / Chorus – NATE OAKS
Buster & Others / Chorus – EM SALZMAN

Meet the
Artistic and Production Staff

Assistant Director — MADDIE THORPE
Assistant Director –– JACK WHITLOW
Puppet Manipulation Coach –– NATHANIEL JUSTINIANO
Assistant Costume Designer — MADELINE HENRY
Wardrobe Supervisor — ALEXA PETERSON-ISMAIL
Assistant Lighting Designer — ARTHUR MANSAVAGE
Production Electrician — DAVIS KRANCHALK
Lead Electrician — MATT DANDINO
Assistant Sound Designer –– SPENCER SWETLOW
Production Sound Engineer — SARAH MILLER
Assistant Production Sound Engineer –– SKYLAR D’AMORE
Assistant Props Lead — ANTON SANTIAGO
Assistant Puppet Designer –– NICOLE VOTA
Assistant Stage Manager — HALLE HART
2nd Assistant Stage Manager — OLIVER WORNER
Production Assistant — MARIANA MORALES
Associate Production Supervisor — ALAYNA DOMBOSKI
Associate Production Supervisor –– ALEX LEWIS
Assistant Production Supervisor — MAC MEDEIROS
Company Manager — MATTHEW GUERBER
Assistant Company Manager — DAVID ESTABROOKS
Assistant Company Manager — AMALIA SANDINE
Run Crew

Cast Bios

ANNA BAKER — Inga / Charles Wilson Peale & Chorus

BFA ‘24 Theatre Education & Performance. Emerson Stage credits: Little Women (Mrs. Mingott). Emerson College credits: EmShakes’ A Midsummer Night’s Dream! (Bottom); MTAG’s The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Carla Mom); and MTS’s First Lady Suite (Mary Gallagher). All my love and thanks to the cast, stage management team, and production team! Thankful for the support from family and friends, couldn’t do it without y’all! @theannabaker

ARIEL COLEMAN (she/her) — Tracy / Comte de Buffon & Chorus

BFA ‘26 Theatre & Performance. Emerson Stage credits: How We Got On (Ensemble/Understudy). Emerson College credits: EmShakes’ King Arthur’s Socks (Guinevere). Ariel would like to thank her friends and family for always encouraging her to follow her dreams and embrace the weird. She extends a special thanks to her little brother Edin, the impractical child in her life. In the words of Peter Pan, I will never grow up.

SPENCER DANIEL (he/him) — Clarence / Clint & Chorus

BFA ’24 Theatre & Performance. Emerson Stage credits: The Secret in the Wings (Actor 6), Old Jake’s Skirts (Old Jake), Three Romances… (u/s Robert), Marie Antoinette (u/s Joseph/Mr. Sauce, Axel/The Executioner), This Girl… (Man/2/Peter); NewFest Short Works’ Biscotti (Boss) and Sometimes a Soul (Derek). Emerson College credits: Rareworks’ Hookman (Hookman/Adam/Sean); BlueJay Theatre Collective’s Dog Sees God (Beethoven); emShakes’ Interior with Peder and Marie (Peder) and [Enter Messenger] (Chorus). Love to Mom, Dads, Campbell, James, and the rest of my family! @spencermdaniel

BRIDGET DEVINE (she/her) — U/S Tracy & Others / Paula & Others / Chorus

BFA ‘26 Musical Theatre & Marketing Communications minor. Emerson Stage Debut! Emerson College theatre credits: Myths & Hymns Song Cycle (Vocalist) and MTS’ EFA Cabaret 2022 (Vocalist). Emerson College film credits: Liminal (Bailey) and Part Ways (Lucy). I’m so excited to be making my Emerson Stage debut in my first ever play! It is such an honor to work with this lovely cast and cannot wait for everyone to see this beautiful and unique show. Thank you to my family, pets, and my best friend in the world Capri for supporting me always.

ASA DUPRAS — Buster / History Narrator & Chorus

BFA ‘25 Musical Theatre. Emerson Stage credits: The Loyals (Lawrence/Joseph Stansbury). Select Emerson College credits: Musical Theatre Society’s La Cage Aux Folles (Albin), Heathers: The Musical (Heather Chandler), Urinetown (Senator Fipp), 2023 Emerson Fights AIDS Cabaret (Co-Director), 2022 Emerson Fights AIDS Cabaret (Soloist); Musical Theatre Against the Grain’s A Chorus Line (Zach), Rock of Ages (Drew), Hot Dam (Really Worried Citizen); RareWorks’ To the End of The World (Travis); EVVY43 (Host) and EVVY41 (Performer). So much love for this team! Thank you to family and friends for their support.

CHAD FRUSCIONE (he/they) — Norman / Paleontologist 2/ Clark & Chorus , U/S Clarence / Clint & Chorus

BFA ’25 Acting. Emerson Stage credits: The Secret in the Wings (Ensemble, u/s Mr. Daniel), Old Jake’s Skirts (Swing), NewFest Short Works What If? (Researcher). Emerson College Credits: MTS Falsettos (Marvin), Big Fish (Edward Bloom), EmShakes A Wrinkle in Time (Fortinbras/Man with Red Eyes), The Moors (Mastiff). Thanks to the Mastodons team, cast, and crew for making this possible! Dream big.

DAKOTA FRYE (she/her) — Paula / Paleontologist 1/ Lewis & Chorus , Jess

BFA ‘27 Theatre & Performance. Emerson College credits: Jelly’s Last Jam (Crowd) for Mercurio Troupe; Angels and Pastrami (Angel). I would like to thank all my family and friends for the support!

ZOE HALPERIN (she/her) — Delores & Chorus

BFA ’24 Theatre & Performance. Emerson Stage credits: Bonnets (u/s Webster), Are You Someone to Somebody? (Ensemble), NFSW: What If? (Researcher 1), Sometimes a Soul (Kaila). Emerson College credits: Kidding Around’s A Wrinkle in Time (Meg), MTAG’s 25th Annual…Spelling Bee (Dani Mom), Mercutio’s Spooktacular (Announcer, Diane), and EmShakes’ Cornflower Blue (Asst. Director) and Ismene (Director). Extra love to Ema and Dad for always encouraging me to follow my dreams, no matter how impractical.

SOPHIA INEZ (she/her) — Jess

BFA ‘24 Acting. Emerson Stage credits: Bonnets (Mistress Stone), Are You Someone To Somebody? A New Devised Piece (Jan), and RAGE (Ensemble/Jaz US). Emerson College credits: Mercutio Troupe’s Our Dear Dead Drug Lord (Kit) and Dance Nation (Ashlee); emShakes’ Much Ado About Nothing (Benedick); and Kidding Around’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Siobhan). Thank you to this beautiful team, everyone who’s given me love and support, and every impractical child. @thesophiainez

NATE OAKS (he/they) — U/S Pat & Others / Norman & Others / Chorus

BFA ’26 Theatre Education & Performance. Emerson Stage credits: Little Women (Robert March). Emerson College credits: MTS’s 13 (Simon), MTS The Summer I Turned Pretty (James). Regional Theatre Credit: Gloucester Stage Company’s To Kill A Mockingbird (Jem), as well as many Emerson Independent Video productions. Thanks Mom and Dad for all the support! @nathanieloaks on ig @nateoaks on tiktok

EM SALZMAN (they/them) — U/S Buster & Others / Chorus

BFA ’26 Musical Theatre. Emerson Stage credits: Are You Someone To Somebody?(Hair and Makeup Supervisor), Bonnets: How Ladies of Good Breeding Are Induced To Murder (U/S Daniel, Laurent). Emerson College Credits: Kidding Around’s Seussical TYA (Jojo), MTAG’s The Wild Party (Max), MTAG’s Hot Dam (Hair and Makeup Assistant), Troupe Ambassador for Improv/sketch comedy group Swomo, member of Emerson Urban Dance Theatre’s Contemporary Company. Em Would like to thank this incredible company for all the hard work on this whimsical treat of a play! Instagram: @em.salzman

ALEXANDER SERINO (he/they) — Pat / Thomas Jefferson & Chorus

BFA ’24 Acting. Emerson Stage credits: Mary, Sweet Mary (Thomas), The Spitfire Grill (Caleb), Three Romances…(Joey U/S), Next To Normal (Henry). Emerson College credits: BlueJay’s Dog Sees God (CB), MTS’s Big Fish (Don Price). Other credits: Indecent (Avram) and The Spongebob Musical (Spongebob) at Weston Drama Workshop. I’d like to thank Conall, Tim, and my parents for being the most supportive group of people I could ask for! See more of me at:

JULIET SIMON (she/her) — U/S Inga & Others / Delores & Others / Chorus

BFA ’26 Musical Theatre. Emerson Stage credits: Bat Boy (US Shelley, Ruthie/Ned). Emerson College credits: MTAG’s A Chorus Line (Bebe), Mercutio Troupe’s Our Dear Dead Drug Lord (Zoom), MTAG’s The Wild Party (Reno). Regional credits: Ragtime: Symphonic Concert (Ensemble) at the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Our Dear Dead Drug Lord (Zoom) at Crave Theatre Company. Thank you to this incredible team, and to Zeke, Lulu, and Grace! @juliet.simon

Creative Team Bios

JOSHUA M. FEDER (he/him) — Director
Joshua M. Feder is a director, choreographer, educator, and arts manager, and is proud to be in his second year as the Assistant General Manager of Emerson Stage. In his theatrical work, he aims to tell meaningful stories with unique perspectives, create collaborative spaces for everyone to do their best work, and explore the magic of being in a room together and experiencing a story being told live and in real time in front of us. Recent directing credits include Love’s Labour’s Lost (World’s Elsewhere Theatre Company), The Honky Tonk Angels (Cornwell’s Dinner Theatre), How I Learned to Drive and The Comedy of Errors (UC Irvine). Josh was affiliated with the New London Barn Playhouse for 16 years, where he directed SylviaOver the Pub, and over 30 productions with their teen company, in addition to serving as their Education Director and Artistic Associate. Additionally, he was the Director of Theater at the Kingswood Oxford School, directing their play and musical and producing their student theater festival each year. Previous work includes productions and positions at Huntington Theatre Company, Paper Mill Playhouse, Goodspeed Musicals, and Roundabout Theatre Company. He earned his BA in Theater from Dartmouth College and his MFA in Directing from UC Irvine, where he also received his Certificate in Arts Management.

RACHEL TEAGLE (she/her) — Playwright
Rachel Teagle is a playwright, librettist, and comedian who grew up in the Silicon Valley, moved around the country, and settled in Minnesota. She helped found the Atlanta Fringe Festival and the Twin Cities Playwright Cabal. She was awarded the Leah Ryan’s Fund for Emerging Women Writers prize for her play The Ever and After. Her play The Impracticality of Modern-Day Mastodons had its world premiere with Theatre Lab in September, 2021. She currently resides in St. Paul with her family.

HARVEY JOHNSON (pronouns) — Scenic Designer
BFA ’24 Theatre Design & Technology. Bio coming soon!

ARIANA DOOKHRAN (any pronouns) — Costume Designer
BFA ’24 Theatre Design & Technology. Emerson Stage credits: Everybody (2nd Assistant Scenic Designer), Next to Normal (Assistant Scenic Designer), The Wolves (Scenic Designer), How We Got On (Scenic Designer), Into the Woods (2nd Assistant Costume Designer), Old Jake’s Skirts (Assistant Costume Designer), and Paris (Costume Designer). Emerson College credits: emShake’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream! (Scenic Designer); Kidding Around’s Barry and the Bear (Scenic Designer); and EVVY42 (Scenic Designer). Big thanks to my mentor, my assistant and the Costume shop for all their support!

MIA MOORE — Lighting Designer
BFA ’24 Theatre Design & Technology. Emerson Stage credits: Little Women (Production Electrician), The Loyals (Co-Lighting Designer), Are You Someone to Somebody (Lead Electrician), Next to Normal (Assistant Lighting Designer). Emerson College credits: Mercutio Troupe’s Wired (Lighting Designer/Production Electrician), RareWorks Theatre Company’s Buck Woods is a Good Man (Co-Lighting Designer). Regional credits: Electrician Apprentice at The Cape Playhouse. Much love and appreciation for my parents, Max, and my friends for their constant support. Excited and a little sad that Mastodons is my last EmStage show! Instagram: @mia.jmoore

JO WILLIAMS (they/them) — Sound Designer
BFA ’25 Theatre Design & Technology. Emerson Stage credits: Bonnets: How Ladies of Good Breeding Are Induced to Murder (Production Electrician), How We Got On (Asst. Lighting Designer), Little Women (Production Sound Engineer), The Loyals (Production Sound Engineer), Mary, Sweet Mary (Lead Electrician), The Secret in the Wings (Asst. Sound Designer), Are You Someone to Somebody? (Asst. Lighting Designer), The Wolves (Asst. Production Sound Engineer). Emerson College Credits: The 42nd Evvy Awards (Production Sound Engineer), Lord of the Flies (Lighting Designer), Gruesome Playground Injuries (Sound Designer), Cornflower Blue (Lighting Designer). A huge thank you to all my friends and family!

LAUREN CORCUERA (she/they) — Props Lead
Lauren Corcuera is a Boston-area theater technician/designer and an Emerson alum who enjoys working with props, paint, and wardrobe. Emerson Stage prop credits include: Stupid Fucking Bird, Next to Normal, Into the Woods, Old Jake’s SkirtsCabaret, and BONNETS: How Ladies of Good Breeding Are Induced to Murder. Other select prop credits: Little Shop of Horrors, The Cake, The Treasurer, Be Here Now, The Last Five Years, Mr. Parent, The Light, Fabulation, or… of Undine, Preludes, Assassins (Lyric Stage Company); Barefoot in the Park, Tiny Beautiful Things, Seared, Think of Me Tuesday, Grand Horizons (Gloucester Stage Company); Pippin, Oklahoma! (Reagle Music Theater); Chicken & Biscuits (Front Porch Arts Collective), Sweeney Todd (Moonbox Productions). Lauren is also currently the Assistant Prop Director for Emerson Stage and wants to thank all of the great students in the shop and on the various productions.

DELENE BEAUCHAMP (he/him) –– Puppet Designer
BFA ’24 Stage & Production Management. Emerson Stage credits: How We Got On (Stage Manager), Cabaret (Associate Production Supervisor), Mary, Sweet Mary (First Assistant Stage Manager), The Wolves (Associate Production Supervisor), Three Romances (Assistant Production Supervisor), Next To Normal (Second Assistant Stage Manager), Baltimore (Assistant Production Supervisor), Going to California (Second Assistant Stage Manager). Emerson College theatre credits: EmShakes’ Antigone (Producer). Thank you to my loved ones for all of your support, and especially my partner Aaron.

GRACE DINATALE (she/her) — Stage Manager
BFA ’24 Stage & Production Management. Emerson Stage credits: The Wolves (1st Assistant Stage Manager), Three Romances… (2nd Assistant Stage Manager), Marisol (Production Assistant), Bonnets… (Production Supervisor), The Loyals (Associate Production Supervisor), This Girl Laughs… (Assistant Production Supervisor). Emerson College credits: EVVY42 (Assistant Stage Manager), Musical Theatre Society’s Big Fish (Co-Costume Designer). Other credits: Summer Theatre of New Canaan’s Once On This Island and The Wizard of Oz (Assistant Stage Manager). An incredibly special thank you to her family and friends for their unwavering love and support, as well as Halle, Oliver, and Mariana for being the most electric team!

KAILEY PELLETIER (she/her) — Production Supervisor
BFA ’24 Stage & Production Management. Emerson Stage credits: Mary, Sweet Mary (Stage Manager), Cabaret (Asst. Company Manager), Are You Someone to Somebody? (Assoc. Production Supervisor), This Girl Laughs… (2nd Asst. Stage Manager), and Spring Awakening (Production Assistant). Emerson College credits: Rarework’s Hookman (Stage Manager) and MTS’s Big Fish (2nd Asst. Stage Manager). Regional credits: POTUS: Or Behind Every… (Sub Asst. Stage Manager) at Speakeasy Stage and The Lehman Trilogy (Production Assistant) at the Huntington Theatre Company. Kailey would like to thank her friends and family for their support!

SOFIA LINDGREN GALLOWAY (she/her) — Dramaturg
MFA ’24 Theatre Education & Applied Theatre. Emerson Stage credits: Plans/Places in NewFest Short Works (Director), Old Jake’s Skirts (Education Director), The Wolves (Asst. Director). Regional credits: Freedom to Fly (Dramaturg) at Muhlenberg College; The Ever and After (Director) at Theatre Pro Rata; Into the Darkness, Le Cirque Féerique, Skins, The Sleeping Beauty in the Wood (Associate Artistic Director) at Collective Unconscious Performance. Thanks to the Emerson community for bringing Rachel’s words to Boston!

Meet the
Emerson Stage Staff


Artistic Director — Annie G. Levy
General Manager — David Colfer
Assistant General Manager — Joshua M. Feder
Production Manager — Timothey Sullivan
Technical Director — Kristin Knutson
Head Carpenter
— Connor Thompson
Scenic Painter
— Joe Keener
Props Director
— Ryan Bates
Assistant Properties Manager
— Lauren Corcuera
Costume Shop Supervisor
— Richelle Devereaux-Murray
Assistant Costume Shop Supervisor
— Becky Pieroth
— Laurie Bramhall
Electrics Advisor — Nicole Cerra
Resident Sound Designer
— Elizabeth Cahill
Sound Technician
— Julie Beaulieu


Stage and Production Management — Debra A. Acquavella
Scenic Design — Baron Pugh
Costume Design — Chloe Moore
Lighting Design — Scott Pinkney
Sound Design — ​Elizabeth Cahill
Fight & Intimacy — Ted Hewlett
Dramaturgy — ​Alexandra Juckno
Vocal Coach — ​Valerie Madden

Student Staff

Emerson Stage Office Assistants — Jake Tolentino, Kayla Copping, Alayna Domboski, Samantha Duggan, Karli Fisher, Carly Mentis
Production Management Assistants — Blake Berggren, Esther Chilson
Videographers — Vincent Chen, Xiao Chen, Ethan West
Scenic Technicians — Casper Apodaca, Kieran Graeff, Ari Flaherty, Davis Kranchalk, Yuyuan “Echo” Lu, Oscar McQuilkin, Dylan Norris, Harley Novy, Elise Tuckwood
Scenic Artists/Painters — Rayan Afif, Nel Blinman, Lily Hourin, Katherine Kendrick, Elodie Lambert, Elizabeth Nunnery, Leo Servetar, David Staats, Charlize Tabrizi
Paint Shop Assistant
— Maggie Stewart
Prop Shop Assistant 
— Delene Beauchamp, Amaya Gonzalez-Mollmann, Oliver Hawke, Mariel Richardson, Ava Scanlon
Stitchers — Zee Cowan, David Estabrooks, Madeline Henry, Amanda Jacobson, Lorence Jones-Perpich, Heidi Keithahn, Alexa Peterson-Ismail, David Schell, Ava-Sofia Settoon, Anna Ten Eyck, Nina Turovsky
Laundry Assistants — Angelina Parillo
Stock Attendants — Sierra Bivins, Isabella Fortebuono, Ashleigh Jones
Crafts — Wei Zhao
Light Lab Inventory Assistant — Eli Goldberg