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Alexandra - Grasshopper


Alexandra Ornes (she/her) is a rising junior at the University of Southern California studying Theatre! She has been a student at PVTC basically since she was born, and will be working there this summer as well. She's so excited to be a part of this production!


What is your favorite bug:

My favorite bug is a butterfly because they are so pretty and peaceful when they fly!


What makes you a hard worker: 

I make sure that I work on things I am passionate about. If I really love what I do I'm more inclined to work hard on it!


Hilary Stevens - Ant


Hilary (she/her) comes to California from Salisbury, Connecticut and is excited to be back at PVTC. A graduate of Shenandoah Conservatory/University, she holds a B.F.A in Theatre for Youth with a minor in Voice. She has directed and performed in over 100 productions. Favorite performance credits include: Damn Yankees (Gloria), Man of La Mancha (Aldonza), The Wizard of Oz (Dorothy). 


What is your favorite bug:

Insert text about her favorite bug. Something like I like Crickets because they are green and make cool noises.


What makes you a hard worker: 

Insert reason. Something like I am dedicated to giving my best effort and finding creative solutions to every challenge.

Creative Team


Noëlle Gibbs - Director

Noëlle (she/her) has worn a variety of hats at PVTC over the past ten years, including Children’s Conservatory Director and Associate Artistic Director. Noëlle is a proud graduate of PVTC, having taken the first-ever intro to acting course offered by her mom in 1994. Credits at PVTC include Persephone, Distracted, Oklahoma!, The Servant of Two Masters, Proof, The Wizard of Oz, The Lion King, Jr., Shrek Jr., Guys and Dolls Jr., Seussical Jr., Once on This Island Jr., The Music Man Jr., and Cinderella, Jr.  
Noëlle received B.A.’s in Theatre & Dance from UC San Diego after completing an honors thesis project in which she spent six months visiting Greece, England, and Italy to study Greek masks, Shakespeare, and Commedia Dell’Arte. As a result, most of her work focuses on collaboration, ensemble-building, and liberating the creative individual. In addition, Noëlle has worked in the artistic and educational departments at top-ranking regional theatres, including TheatreWorks in Palo Alto, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Long Wharf Theatre in New Haven, CT, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, and the Magic Theatre in San Francisco. She is also a freelance director who is working with Dragon Theatre and City Lights Theatre Company in the 2016 season. She was the recipient of Theatre Bay Area’s’ ATLAS Award in Directing in 2014.


Raf Ornes - Music Director

Raf (he/him) began working with PVTC in 1996 when he conducted a production of The Music Man. Since then he has been the music director for many shows for PVTC (adult and youth productions), while concurrently serving as Minster of Music at Valley Presbyterian Church.  Raf earned a BS in Electrical Engineering, before returning to study choral conducting at Stanford.  He has directed several choirs and other groups at local schools and theatre companies including the Foothilll College, Stanford University, Stanford Savoyards, Ram's Head, Lyric Theatre, and Woodside Elementary School. He enjoys the opportunity to help young performers grow and develop artistically in a supportive environment.


Fred Eiras - Set Designer

Fred (he/him) joined the PVTC during the summer of 2018, returning to the Bay Area after 13 years in Kentucky. Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, attending school at Riordan High School and San Francisco State University, Fred has been actively involved in educational, community, and professional theatre on and off the stage for 45 years. Currently, Fred  is the Technical Director of Performing Arts at Sacred Heart Atherton as well as the Resident Set Designer and Builder for Portola Valley Theatre Conservatory. Fred is a set designer, scenic artist, master carpenter, prop builder, actor, singer, stage manager and director. Fred has worked with numerous schools and theatre companies including, Broadway By the Bay, Hillbarn Theatre, Peninsula Center Stage, Bread Alone Theatre, Palo Alto Players, Busbarn Stage Company, Los Altos Youth Theatre, Bay Area Educational Theatre, Pied Piper Players, Back Alley Musicals, Theatre Workshop of Owensboro, Daviess County High School, Audubon Elementary, Madisonville Community Theatre, Peninsula Musical Theatre, Cappuccino Community Theatre, Aragon High School, Carlmont High School and Tri Schools Productions to name a few. Fred also has taught and still teaches several technical theatre classes in the Bay Area as well as the Kentucky Daviess County Region. Fred has a passion for theatre and wants to instill his love for his craft into children and students, to keep his love for the theatre alive and help it spread. Fred’s Motto:  All the worlds a stage, but someone has got to build it first!


May 19 & 20, 2022 @ 11:00am

Portola Valley Theatre Conservatory

$5 for 1 (Grasshopper)
$10 for 2 (Best Friends)
$15 for 4 (Ant Colony!)


Ant is a hard-working but miserable insect: Her whole life is about work and collecting food. Grasshopper is fun-loving but irresponsible: she never stops to think about the danger of looming winter. Can Ant and Grasshopper combine talents, work together, and learn the importance of balance and friendship? Find out in this toe-tapping and heartfelt musical based on the fable “The Ant and the Grasshopper”!


Hello there, Fleas!

Welcome to life in the blades (that’s insect speak for “grass”)! The show you are going to watch today is a musical. That means that the actors will tell their story by acting and dancing with their bodies and singing with their voices. They use their imaginations to pretend to be the two characters in the story: Ant and Grasshopper. 

As you watch the show, think about these questions:

  • How does Hilary, the actor who plays Ant, change her voice and body to become a tiny insect? How would you describe what Ant looks like? How would you describe Ant’s feelings?

  • How does Jess, the actor who plays Grasshopper, use her voice and body differently than Hilary? How would you describe what Grasshopper looks like? What feelings does Grasshopper have?

  • What is important to Ant at the beginning of the story?

  • What is important to Grasshopper at the beginning of the story? 

  • What do Ant and Grasshopper learn from each other at the end of the musical?

You can talk about these questions after the show with your friends, teachers, or caregivers.

I hope you have a hoppin’ good time. And remember, laughing when a character does something funny onstage or clapping at the end of a song & dance number is a great way to enjoy theatre.


And now for our show!

-Noëlle GM Gibbs


Our performance of Ant and Grasshopper will take place outside. Please bring a picnic blanket or lawn chairs. You can set up a seating area on the lawn.


Following the performance, audience members are invited to participate in some simple theatre games and activities with PVTC staff. 


Please do not park in the coned-off areas of the parking lot.


Our performance of Ant and Grasshopper will take place outside. Please bring a picnic blanket or lawn chairs. You can set up a seating area on the lawn.


Following the performance, audience members are invited to participate in some simple theatre games and activities with PVTC staff. 


Please do not park in the coned-off areas of the parking lot.


945 Portola Road

Portola Valley, CA 94028



Located on the campus of Valley Presbyterian Church


Starting on April 4th, masking is optional for vaccinated individuals participating in PVTC programming. PVTC still highly recommends masking, but we trust our families to decide what is best for them and will respect their masking decisions.


Details about our updated COVID policies are as follows:


  • Vaccinated individuals may choose to wear a mask or not while participating in PVTC programming. PVTC will respect the decision to mask or to unmask.

  • Participants wishing to unmask indoors must show proof of vaccination prior to entering the space. We will keep a record of vaccination status onsite.

  • Unvaccinated individuals must continue to wear masks indoors at PVTC.

  • If any student has potentially been exposed to COVID-19, please wear a mask both indoors and outdoors until testing negative 5 days after exposure.

  • If you are feeling any mild symptoms of a cold, illness, please continue to stay home.

  • If you want your child to continue to wear a mask in class while indoors, please speak to your child about keeping their mask on despite having other students in class possibly not wearing one. If you want the teaching artist to enforce masking with your child, please alert a PVTC staff member at drop-off.

  • PVTC will continue to monitor state and county guidelines to align our policies with their recommendations.


Our priority continues to be the safety of our teachers, students, parents, and community-at-large. The journey back from COVID is ongoing and we will continue to keep you in the loop as our policies change and evolve.


If you have questions, comments, or concerns please reach out to us at or give us a call at 650-530-2428.

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