Staff

MARK PLESENT
Producing Artistic Director

Mark has been associated with Working Theater in since 1989. In 1996 he was named Producing Director and in 2010 he became Producing Artistic Director. He has produced over 30 plays for the Theater including Michael Henry Brown’s Ascension Day, Ed Belling’s A Drop in the Bucket (which he also directed), and the Drama Desk Award-winning Tabletop, among many others. In his current capacity, Mark is responsible for the re-institution of the Company’s commissioning program resulting in new plays by Linda Faigao-Hall, OyamO, Jason Grote, Lisa Ramirez, Manuel Borras and Ed Cardona, Jr.

Mark has also worked as the Development Director for Jennifer Muller/The Works and the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company. Prior to working for the arts organizations mentioned above, Mark produced and/or directed over 15 independent theatre and performance art projects including “Populace”, a performance on the IRT #1 train from Chambers Street to 125th street involving 22 directors and over 200 actors. Mark serves on the Board of Directors of the Alliance of Resident Theaters/New York, an organization serving over 300 member theaters. Mark graduated from Brown University with a Bachelor of Arts in Theater.

LAURA CARBONELL MONARQUE
Managing Director

Laura has been involved with Working Theater since an internship in 2003. Since 2013 she has spent her time between New York and California and she continues to work in theatre and film as an actor and singer. She and her husband Steve produce independent work with their company MonaVision Films. Laura holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and the Stella Adler Conservatory.

CHELSEA GREGORY
Community Engagement Coordinator

Chelsea Gregory is a community-engaged artist, cultural organizer and arts educator originally from Atlanta, GA. She is a contributing writer and facilitator for “Every 28 Hours,” a community-engaged theater project addressing the impact of police violence and is part of their Cultural Competency Advisory Team to support accountability to those most impacted by these issues. She also coordinates community engagement for Working Theater’s “Five Boroughs/One City,” a project creating theater for, inspired by and in response to communities in neighborhoods throughout the five boroughs of New York City, specifically Ed Cardona, Jr.’s “Bamboo in Bushwick”, a project that uses theater to explore the impact of gentrification on communities throughout NYC. 
In 2014 and 2015 she was part of the touring cast of Cornerstone Theater Company’s “California: The Tempest,” a community-engaged adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Tempest” that addressed issues such as food equity, immigration reform, climate change and the prison industry. Other recent performances include “Mapa Corpo” with Guillermo Goméz-Peña, Andrea Thome’s “Necklace of the Dove,” and a performance piece called “Body Stories” based on research by somatic psychologists on how oppression impacts the body. Recent choreography projects include Working Theater’s “Bamboo in Bushwick” and PopUP Theatrics’ site-specific immersive “Broken City: Harlem,” both projects that explored the impact of gentrification on the neighborhoods of New York City. She also developed and directed the street theater initiative for the Berkeley VS Big Soda campaign, which led to the first successful soda tax measure in the US.

JOE ROLAND
Director, TheaterWorks!

An actor and a playwright, Joe Roland is a graduate of the New Actors Workshop where he studied with George Morrison, Mike Nichols and Paul Sills.

On the Line, his play about the struggles of three working class friends, has been read at Lincoln Center and received a workshop reading from The Public Theater. The play was produced Off-Broadway at the Cherry Lane Theater in New York. He has worked in television and film, including Charlie Wilsons War, and was last seen on Broadway in The Country Girl. In addition to his career in the theater, for the last several years Mr. Roland has been dedicated to adult education. Since 2005 he has been teaching a GED course at  The Thomas Shortman Training Fund which provides training for eligible members of 32BJ.