Why support Barrel of Monkeys through a donation for #GivingTuesday? For your viewing pleasure, we present this video featuring Sonya and Joanya in…
Thank you in advance for supporting the imaginations of children through a donation this #GivingTuesday, December 2! All amounts donated under the program are tax-deductible to the maximum extent allowed by law. As always, thank you for your support!
Who are Joanya and Sonya?
Sonya and Joanya are two characters that originated from a student-written story by Stephaun B. of the Loyola Park After-School Program entitled “Grannies Lean Like a Cholo” .
Sonya is a lifelong sports enthusiast and patron of the arts. She has held many roles in her life: Little League coach, small business owner, mother, grandmother, aunt, friend, and part-time life coach. Her current interests include attending live theater, instant messaging, and going on adventures with her dearest friend in the world, Joanya.
Joanya Merman Nemoy
Actress Joanya Merman Nemoy starred in Golden Twilight Retirement Home productions like Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, and BUtterfield 8, but was just as famous for her violet eyes and scandalous love life. Born in Brooklyn on February 27, 1932, Joanya made her theatre debut in One Born Every Minute (Long Island Playhouse) and achieved stardom with National Velvet (Jersey Shore Rep).
“Wait a minute. Is this why this young and attractive camera crew is here? I get it now, we’re here to talk about a very specific way to participate in The Hashtag Giving Tuesday. We are giving to Barrel of Monkeys. I just figured it out!” - Joanya
Elizabeth Levy (Sonya)
Levy joined the ensemble in 2004 and was hired as Program Director in 2008. Before becoming Program Director, Levy was the Education Coordinator at Steppenwolf Theatre Company. Levy graduated from The University of Chicago with a Bachelor of Arts in English Language and Literature. While at U of C, she ran several drama programs in neighborhood schools in Hyde Park. Elizabeth has performed locally with Steppenwolf Theatre, the House Theatre, Collaboraction, Strawdog and Dog and Pony.
Joseph Schupbach (Joanya)
Schupbach began his involvement with Barrel of Monkeys in 2005 and has served as After-School Program Coordinator and Education Coordinator for the past three years before being promoted to Artistic Director, the position he now holds. Schupbach has served as a professional teaching artist in Chicago for multiple organizations including Lookingglass Theatre and St. Clement School. He has directed shows for Barrel of Monkeys, North Park University, Murakami Sound Machine and InGen Productions – a company of which he is co-founder and Artistic Director. Joseph has assistant directed for The Ruffians and The Neo-Futurists and has performed all over Chicago.