Meet the Players


Kevin Richard WoodallKEVIN RICHARD WOODALL* has been a performing member of The Paper Bag Players for twenty-six seasons. Kevin, an Illinois State University graduate, is also proud to be the company’s Director, Co-Writer and Choreographer. His memorable and fan-making roles include the Bully in Big Bully, the Baby in Baby Mayhem, Cowboy K in Cowboy K and the Cowgirls, Spring in When Winter Stayed Too Long and Boom in Boom Surprise! Regionally, Kevin has had featured roles in BIG RIVER, INTO THE WOODS, THE MAN WHO CAME TO DINNER, THE FANTASTICKS, and THE MUSIC MAN. Kevin has toured as Sam The Postman in SESAME STREET LIVE 1…2…3… IMAGINE!
*Appears through the courtesy of Actors Equity Association


John StoneJOHN STONE has been Composer and Music Director of The Paper Bag Players since 2003, playing the electric keyboard at each show. He has also co-written material for the shows since the founding of the new creative ensemble in 2009. John’s chamber works have toured nationally and internationally, appearing most recently in the Mostly Mozart Festival at Lincoln Center. His Langston Hughes song-cycle, Daybreak in Alabama, has received numerous performances in the USA and France and was featured in the nationally broadcast radio series, Song of America, hosted by Thomas Hampson. In 2017, Met opera soloist Molly Fillmore sang the Daybreak cycle at the University of North Texas. Theater and film credits include the scores for Vanessa Redgrave’s production of Antony and Cleopatra, and the film I LIKE IT HERE by Ralph Arlyck. For more info, please visit


Ceili (Kay-lee) FitzpatrickCEILI (Kay-lee) FITZPATRICK is thrilled to be joining The Paper Bag Players in BIG BAG OF LAUGHS! Ceili is from Rockland County and has been performing since she was 7! She loves nothing more than being the funny guy in the room, the “big cheese,” if you will. She takes being silly VERY seriously, and can’t wait to make students giggle!


JYMIL LITTLESPhilly native JYMIL LITTLES is a recent graduate of The American Musical Dramatic Academy (AMDA). Hailing from the world of musical theater, he has worked with Theater for the New City, Mass Transit and has starred in several short films, including DEAR ELEANOR (Tina Chapman), BIG THREE (Julian Turner), and JUNIOR (Heman Armstrong). Jymil is beyond thrilled to join The Paper Bag Players family!


Erika MesaERIKA MESA is an actress and singer professionally trained at the American Musical Dramatic Academy (AMDA). Born and raised in Miami, she is a fun-loving individual who is excited to join The Paper Bag Players! Some of her most recent credits include BROADWAY RISING STARS, BROADWAY BY THE YEAR, and 54 Below’s BROADWAY’S GREATEST HITS.


James HuggansJAMES HUGGANS is returning for his 22nd season as Production Supervisor for The Paper Bag Players. James is a Rutgers University graduate who has worked in the NY area for over 30 years. During his time with The Bags, they have traveled extensively to places like Boston, Providence, Chicago, Maine, Alabama, and the Festival Internacional in Chihuahua, Mexico. James is a performer as well, with some of his favorite credits being Petruchio in THE TAMING OF THE SHREW, Tybalt in ROMEO AND JULIET, and Roy in LONE STAR. James thanks his wife Mary for all her love and support.


Florencia Escudero and Emiri FujimotoFLORENCIA ESCUDERO and EMIRI FUJIMOTO are the scenic artist team behind The Paper Bag Player’s props, sets and costumes. Florencia, a sculptor, studied at the School of Visual Arts and received an MFA from the Yale School of Art. She exhibits her artwork in various galleries and is currently included in the Aldrich Museum’s group exhibition, 52 WOMEN. Emiri is also a recent graduate of the School of Visual Arts bachelor program. Together, they enjoy the challenges of designing objects and have a lot of fun making them as well!


Judith MartinJUDITH MARTIN (1917–2012) was a founding member of The Paper Bag Players in 1958 and Artistic Director from 1963 through 2009. Judith devoted herself to developing a contemporary theater for children. She wrote, designed, choreographed, directed and performed in 35 Paper Bag Players shows and co-authored five children’s books. Her awards include Parents Magazine’s “As They Grow” Award for having “truly made this world a better place for all children” and an American Theater Wing Design Award for her “sustained contribution to theatrical design,” the Children’s Theater Foundation Medallion for 2003 and a “Playful People Award” from Nick Jr. Magazine.


Judy LissJUDITH LISS (Founding Managing Director) joined The Paper Bag Players in 1962. She took The Paper Bag Players from a company that gave 20 shows a year for approximately 6,000 children to a company gave 130 shows for approximately 65,000 children annually, including performances in 37 of the United States and internationally in Canada, England, Scotland, Wales, Israel, Iran, Egypt, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Japan.

Under her stewardship, “The Bags” were awarded with an Obie, six American Theater Wing Awards, three awards for excellence from the American Association for Theater and Education, The Broadway Theater Institute Award for Theater and Education, and the Children’s Theater Foundation Medallion. The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, which houses the company’s archives, held an exhibition in 2008, The Paper Bag Players: 50 Years of Theater Art.