Seasonal Event

“Small Steps”
Catalyst: A Theatre Think Tank

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Growing sick of the gay dating scene, a man volunteers to go to Mars in the comedy “Small Steps,” written by Davis native Briandaniel Oglesby. The play is being presented by Catalyst: A Theatre Think Tank through the UC Davis Department of Theatre and Dance in collaboration with Bike City Theatre Company. Free virtual performances will be streamed on Jan. 21-23 at 6 p.m. (PST).

In “Small Steps,” Skip Powers is fed up with the disappointment-filled world of online dating, which leads him to apply to the National Association of Space Astronauts for a mission to Mars. He is accepted into the program, but before his launch, he meets a guy who may be the love of his life … and keep him earthbound.

“I’m excited to have the energy of UC Davis and Bike City Theatre behind it,” said Oglesby. “My mission has been to live a life that brings me back to work in my hometown with folks I love. Their work has been phenomenal – the theatrical equivalent to the moon landing.”  

The play contains adult language and sexual themes.

“Small Steps” is Oglesby’s second work to be presented by UC Davis. His play “The Briars” was performed in the first new works festival in 2017.

“Small Steps” is directed by Brady Brophy-Hilton, who has worked at theatres throughout the region including Shotgun Players, Berkeley Repertory Theatre and Capital Stage. The cast includes UC Davis alumni Nate Challis (B.A, theatre and dance, ’20) and Charlie Lavaroni (B.A., theatre and dance, ’19).

A launching pad for new stage works, Catalyst continues to be a virtual festival in 2021 with online rehearsals and performances, which gives the company a national footprint and allows creative teams to collaborate from various locations across time zones. Broadway veteran Mindy Cooper, UC Davis professor of theatre and dance, and alumna Lisa Quoresimo (Ph.D., performance studies, ’18) are co-founders of Catalyst.

Bike City Theatre Company is a professional, nonprofit theatre company based in Davis. The theatre’s mission is to create theatre that is sustainable, invested in the community and vibrantly theatrical. Graduate student J.R. Yancher is the theatre’s artistic director.

The UC Davis College of Letters and Science’s Department of Theatre and Dance produces the 2020-2021 Catalyst season with support from the Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art, Bike City Theatre Company, Southern Utah University and San Francisco Youth Theatre.

For details about how to view the play and other events, visit


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