Co-Founder, Artistic Director
Erin Brindley founded Ripple Productions in New York City in 2003 where she began integrating dining and theater to critical acclaim winning the Backstage Award for Most Memorable Play of 2004 for Innocent When you Dream. In 2007 she returned to her hometown of Seattle to become Managing Director of Circus Contraption and eventually directed their final show, The Show to End All Shows. After Circus Contraption disbanded, Brindley moved Ripple Productions to Seattle to create Café Nordo. Developing the concept with Terry Podgorski, she has produced and directed all eight shows and designed menus for each, wearing more hats than a haberdasher. She holds a BFA from Tisch School of the Arts at NYU and taught herself a thing or two about cooking along the way due to a healthy appetite and a passion for the delicious.
Co-Founder, Producing Director
Terry Podgorski has self produced theater for 20 years. It has been his goal to collaborate with artists and present disparate, entertaining ideas to the public. He cut his teeth in 1996 commandeering retail spaces for multi-media art festivals that joined local music, storytelling, and movies with installation art. In 2000, he found Circus Contraption, and for 8 years worked as tour manager, lighting designer, set designer, theatrical director, and eventually production manager. Circus Contraption toured the West Coast, New York, and Portugal, produced numerous shows, and attended countless festivals. In 2004 he designed and built the set for The Grand American Traveling Dime Museum. It ran to rave reviews for 3 years. Since 2011, he has done technical direction for the Degenerate Art Ensemble bringing Red Shoes to the Frye Art Museum. Currently, he is aiding in the design of their next major production, The Dictator. As Circus Contraption concluded he embarked on Café Nordo blending experiential dining and theater. Since 2009, he has written, produced, and designed the Café Nordo series completing 8 shows thus far. Terry intends to continue exploring the world of immersive and non-traditional theater, to design and write worlds that transport the public, and collaborate with other creators for years to come.
Company Member | Music Director
Native to Great Falls, MT, Annastasia currently lives in Seattle, WA, a safe 641 miles away. She put herself on the map at age four with the single “Hearts Are Red,” a smash hit at family gatherings and church potlucks. Some years later, she went on to secure a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance, and shortly after that she completed the Pacific Northwest Film Scoring Program. Now working in Seattle as a freelance composer for film, television, and theater productions, she is thrilled and honored to be the house composer for Café Nordo, which is a role she has fulfilled since its inception. As a musician and performer, Annastasia is currently a pianist at the Pacific Northwest Ballet, and recent history includes performing with the Colorado Ballet, playing in the band for the final incarnation of Circus Contraption, and the release of her first album, Café Nordo’s Music for Dining, Volume 1.
Company Member | A/V Manager
Evan Mosher is a stage & film actor, musician, and sound designer from Illowa who headed west in 1998 to plant himself in Seattle. He wiggled his toes for years in the fertile soil of the national sketch comedy scene with groups like Flaming Box of Stuff and Bald Faced Lie. In 2004 he started a root system with some comedy & music fellows called "Awesome" who made 10 shows, 7 albums, 1 film score, and played all over (from Rendezvous to the Gorge). In 2012, Evan became a Turtle who crawled out of a cupboard and into the employ of Chef Nordo and his Cabinet of Curiosities. Since that happy day he's also been a dreamy Agent Penn, a dusty Travis Shank, and a flesh-obsessed La Flèche. They each played the trumpet and sang songs. Evan feels incredibly lucky to be joining the lovely people in Nordo's company.
In 2009, and completely by chance, Kelly Morgan came to Café Nordo as a crackshot spotlight operator with a passion for food service. Since then, she has relished in the unique challenges presented by the company and watched, flabbergasted, as a single beautiful and strange idea has grown into her family and community at large. Kelly Morgan also stage manages for Moisture Festival and The Degenerate Art Ensemble. In her spare time, she is delighted to work at Cafe Flora, make performance art in her garage, and pet her exceptionally soft dog.
Company Member | Adorable Member Concierge
Opal is a founding company member of Cafe Nordo and has originated roles in all 10 productions created by Erin Brindley and Terry Podgorski. A 2004 Cornish College of the Arts graduate, creating new work is her passion, and she is fortunate to have the opportunity at Nordo to pursue this dream. She writes and performs cabaret musicals with fellow artist Mark Siano (whom she met when they were cast in Nordo's Sauced in 2010) including Bohemia and Twister Beach, which were written for Nordo's Culinarium as co-productions. Ms. Peachey has also been seen on the stages of Book-It Repertory Theater Company, The Triple Door and ACT Theater amongst others.
(Photo: Joe + Jill Studios)
Board of Directors
Pauline Zeestraten | Chair
Tom Hajduk | Co-Chair
Anne Swetonic | Treasurer
Mike Taylor | Secretary
Integrated Marketing Management
Seattle at Stimulant
Musician & Multimedia Consultant
Dayton Allemann is a composer and performer who works extensively with emerging technologies. The interplay between live music and video is the main focus of his work. Getting his start as an accompanist and composer in the German theater system, he then worked in Spain as a freelance performer and is now based in Seattle.
Emcee & Chanteur
Devin Bannon is a performer, director and Nordo regular, having performed with Nordo in multiple productions beginning with the first show, The Modern American Chicken. Devin earned his BA in Theatre at Hampshire, was trained in Physical Theatre at l’Accademia dell’Arte, and also performs locally with the Degenerate Art Ensemble, Seattle Immersive Theatre, and Washington Ensemble Theatre.
John is a Seattle-based photographer specializing in portraits, headshots, theatrical promotion, and performance photography. John has worked with Café Nordo, Marxiano Productions, The Habit, ACT Theater, the Moisture Festival, and more. Find him at www.cornicello.com or on Instagram at cornicellophoto.
Maximillian Davis has appeared in seven shows for Cafe Nordo: The Modern American Chicken (Original, and Part Deux), To Savor Tomorrow, The Cabinet of Curiosities, Somethin' Burning, Smoked, and El Ingenioso Cocinero Don Nordo del Midwest. He also served as Cocktail Menu designer for Smoked and Bohemia. Particular gratitude is given for the opportunity to have curated the Culinarium's first Drinkers & Thinkers series in 2015.
Artistic Contributor & Painter
Jed Dunkerley has worked full time as a Visual Arts teacher at Franklin High School for the past 12 years. His own creative practices include satirical landscape painting (represented by the Linda Hodges Gallery), making socially-engaging installation art with PDL, writing lyrics/performing music and musical theater, and collaborating in a thousand creative ways with anyone who asks nicely enough.
Joselynn Tokashiki Engstrom is a local producer, performer and arts administrator. She has appeared in two shows for Cafe Nordo: "Smoked" and "El Ingenioso Concinero Don Nordo del Midwest". Joselynn has been behind the scenes from nearly the start working on marketing, fundraising, website admin, menu consultation and helping to open Nordo's Culinarium.
Katrina Hess is an award-winning app designer and shares her extensive web design experience with Café Nordo. In 2010, she started a bespoke outerwear company called Made in Sodo where she reveled in designing functional garments. As a long-time fan of Café Nordo, she was honored and elated to design the costumes for the Cullinarium's inaugural show Don Nordo del Midwest.
Facilities and Performer
Mr. Higgins has been working as an actor, director, fight choreographer, and producer in Seattle since 2005. He has been awarded two Gregory Awards including Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actor (2012) and Outstanding Choreography (2016). He has been the artistic director of Balagan Theatre and The Collision Project, and is a founder of Table Flip, Seattle's premier movement direction company.
Robin is a freelance set and props designer who has worked with over 25 different local companies in the Puget Sound area. Her first production with Nordo was the inaugural Culinarium show, "Don Nordo Del Midwest", and she has enjoyed every new challenge that has come her way since.
In politics a whip ensures party discipline. In cooking a whip means that you incorporate air until light and fluffy. Keira was an actor in Cabinet of Curiosities, Something Burnin' and Don Nordo Del Midwest and acted as director in the second coming of To Savor Tomorrow. I hope to help to whip up zany deliciousness in any way that I can for the audiences that grace the doorsteps of The Culinarium.
Dave Pascal has appeared in several Cafe Nordo productions. He plays bass with bands including The Love Markets, and Carrie Clark and the Lonesome Lovers (whom he’s joined on several European tours). He performs regularly in the pit of Seattle’s Fifth Avenue Theatre, and in other theater and club bands, recording studios, and has many credits as an album producer and engineer, and as a sound designer for theater and multimedia projects.
Becky Poole is an actor, writer, voiceover artist, sketch comedian, and musician. She’s done voice work for, Nintendo, Poptarts, & Cartoon Network. She’s a teaching artist with the Unusual Suspects theatre program for underserved and incarcerated youth in LA.Theatre performance includes Café Nordo (Modern American Chicken 1&2), Chicago Children’s Theatre, and the Hypocrites' Gilbert & Sullivan Rep. She played “Tatted Girl” in the Netflix series “Girlboss” and writes feminist murder ballads.
Jody has spent the last 15 years exploring new ways to engage people emotionally through product and visual design. She has a passion for typography, color, research, housewares, namestorming, radio, science fiction, and documenting her toddler on Instagram. Jody studied Industrial Design at WWU, and was the creative lead for surface design and development for global consumer product brands in Seattle. She is currently raising a small human and acting as a design consultant for artists, chefs, and radio personalities.
Ray Tagavilla is a University of Washington graduate. His interests include everything interesting. Including pizza.
Bruce was born and raised in San Francisco with strong cultural ties to Hawaii. He began shooting pictures as a child mainly to make his friends laugh. He is best known for his photographic work as a member of the Degenerate Art Ensemble. The majority of his time is spent documenting the Seattle Art scene as a photojournalist.
Banner Image by Joshua Taylor