Connie's stage page

I've put more time into theater than anything besides marriage and work. I've designed T-shirts, posters, and sets, sung in male and female choruses, and done tech work backstage (I wish I had more pictures of that). I've also written silly parodies (just a few posted so far). This page is a gallery of that.

Most productions are from the operettas of Gilbert & Sullivan, so if a show lists no composer, it was G&S. (How did I get into G&S, and why?) My two main theater groups are these:

Click most thumbnails to see a larger version of the image.

For more information about Gilbert & Sullivan, see the wonderful G&S Archive.

Head shot: Connie Kleinjans
2002 head shot for the lobby.
Photo by Bob March (thanks, Bob).
Lots of photo credits on this page
are for Bob. You can reach him at

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Rose of Persia, Lyric Theatre, 2008

Rose of Persia, Lyric Theatre, 2008

Erminie, Lyric Theatre, 2008

Pirates of Penzance, Lyric Theatre, 2008

In rehearsal, with Geoff Schaeffer

Same scene on-stage

Yeomen: Costume building
Yeomen: Backstage


Quaker Girl
Lyric Theatre of San Jose
Chorus (alto)

Iolanthe, or The Peer and the Peri
The Quaker Girl, by Lionel Monkton


Trial by Jury and Operetta Highlights

The Sultana

The Serenade, by Victor Herbert
Seeking pictures

In addition to fully staged productions, Lyric Theatre has their Discovery series, which is semi-staged versions of long-lost shows. By semi-staged I mean no set, no orchestra, and no costumes. Rather, there's some blocking, pianos stand in for the orchestra, and there might be minimal props. Performers are dressed in evening wear. It lets you present a show with less overhead, meaning Lyric can perform some exploratory shows. In some ways it's actually quite theatrical; without the other bells and whistles, you have to focus on the singing and acting. Occasionaly you find a gem, but occasionally you also find that a long-lost show really deserved to be lost in the first place.




Mikado set design

Cranes Over Moon
"Cranes Over Moon," by Keiichi Nishimura


The Gondoliers
I did a series (two) of silhouette images, taking an
original piece of clip art and removing all the detail. I'd
love to claim that all my art was totally original, but ideas
come from somewhere, and when you're in a hurry you
borrow. But I do like the effect. Here's an actual techie
wearing one
(Sabrina Cuddy, who's also a fine soprano).
I wish I had more pictures of techies.

Pirates of Penzance
Pirates of Penzance
The second silhouette image. Again, I lifted an existing
image and removed the detail. I also added the skull and
crossbones and tweaked a few other things. And put in
the wrong theater name. Stuff like that.









Princess Ida

Princess Ida
"The guys who lean right!"
Andrew, Dave Kirby, me, and Davi Euresti. I mostly need facial hair to look like a
man, especially when I'm wearing a dress and have long hair (as I was here). But I felt like a Three Musketeer.

Princess Ida
Princess Ida art
One of four designs based on
art by W. Russell Flint
(click to see all of them)
La Belle Helene
This T-shirt design was based on
existing art
used in promo material,
and the idea was follow the theme.
Hello, Photoshop.

This show really needed men: It had three
distaff tenors. That's me on the left, and
Sally on the right. (And my friends Kathy
and Keith in back.)

Poster for the Savoyards'
thirtieth anniversary show
(based on clip art).
Long time for a college G&S group.

I updated an earlier list of all the shows the
group had done to that point, and placed it on
a background of William and Arthur. (I had a
dickens of a time making them look alike.
The source images were very different.)
(Maybe "dickens" isn't the right word.)



G&S aficionados know that the
undulating strip of paper is Koko's
little list. We were in a big hurry, so
I kind of plagiarized my 1992 design.
Or it's a tribute to John Belushi's
samurai [fill in the blank].
Mikado: Chorus
(A gay guy in the audience thought
I looked hot, and was dismayed to
learn I wasn't his type.)

Mike Cuddy on the left and me on the right
(photo by Mark Baushke)
See photos from various production phases.


I'm the third ghost from your right, tormenting
Mark Blattel, who's writhing on the floor. Here's a picture in
the warm-up room, horsing around with Mark (in his Robin
Oakapple costume). I have no idea what we were doing.

Mademoiselle Modiste



This is a favorite. It has mystery
and a little soul. Usually, if someone
compliments my designs, I say "Yeah,
BUT..." I don't do that with this one.

Yes, it's the upperclass twit-of-the-year contest! (I'm fourth from your left)
Those capes are made out of old theater curtains and weigh
upwards of a dozen pounds each. Seriously. And they're hot.


Princess Ida
My gratitude to Arborell for creating a wonderful
original that I modfied for this design. (But I do
think the new crown is pretty spiffy.)

Pirates of Penzance
My first show in the men's chorus. I got
to be a pirate! And even a policeman.


The Savoyards' 25th anniversary. Art
executed with the skilled assistance of Neil M.
Design used for poster, mailers, and T-shirts.
The producer wanted a simple, linear design.
It's not my normal style, but it was good to
stretch. And I got to buy a computer tablet.


HMS Pinafore
Valerie Bubb (on the right) and I were cast as guards to
Sir Joseph Porter, KCB (Mark Blattel). This picture originally appeared here (thanks, Kimmerie).

The Gondoliers
I used the same skyline Neil and I created for
an earlier design. I seem to recall struggling
to execute the gondola with forced perspective.

The Zoo
Thank you, Ruth Leibig, for
constructing such a gorgeous
dress. I felt like someone
out of My Fair Lady.


Ruddigore, or The Witch's Curse
I did a concept sketch of the face at rehearsal and tried to do a final one later at home, but the original wouldn't be outdone. I like the yellow eyes, and the way you see the hat just by negative space.
Tiral by Jury

With Nathan, who played the Harpo character.

I won an award!
(So it was tongue in cheek.) I was assistant stage manager, summoning performers to the stage on speakers that broadcast through the entire backstage. When it was time for Act II to start, I forgot the word "places," you know, as in "Places for act II." Instead I blurted something about "OK, everyone, come on, it's time to get on-stage now!" Something really lame. In honor of that achievement, I received this fine plaque, which I love, from Cheryl B. It says "Eloctratic Elocution Award," a reference to a joke in the show.



Yeomen of the Guard, 1995
Yes, this is a total lift from Phantom of
the Opera
, and that's what makes it funny.
The thing on the right is a mask. Thanks,
Marc Kenig, for the idea.

Yeomen of the Guard, Stanford Savoyards, 1995
I was one of the townspeople.

Pirates of Penzance
The director set this show among
inmates in an insane asylum, and
we got silly backstage, too.
Costumes make you act up. And different
costumers make you act differently.

The Sorcerer, Stanford Savoyards, 1995
The Sorcerer
Not elegant, perhaps, but it illustrates a
key part of the story, yet is simple enough
to figure out from a distance.


Utopia, Ltd.
The Stanford Savoyards
Chorus (alto) (comprimario)


Utopia, Ltd., 1994
Women's chorus. Normally set on a South Pacific
Isle, this was recast in a Grecian setting.

Utopia poster
Design used for posters and T-shirts.
Pretty experimental for me.

Pirates: women and Papa
If you know G&S, you know Pirates is given
to high camp. I'm the one in front of the
Major-General (Paul Z.) in moo-cow slippers.


HMS Pinafore
The Stanford Savoyards
Scenic artist
Chorus (alto)


I scanned a T-shirt of this. As an attractive design
I think it worked well. I'm not sure it projects the
concept of the show, or G&S in general, but it's
pretty. The ripples in the wwater were deucedly
hard to convey, although they came in handy later.
It was also a poster (coming by and by).

Iolanthe, 1993, Stanford Savoyards
I looked at lots of butterflies, did scads of
sketches, then talked to Neil M., who skillfully
executed the art from my simple line drawing.

Pirates of Penzance, 1993, Sunnyvale Community Players
The director played off our heights and
assigned Rob, the shortest pirate, to be
my captor. (Photo (c) The Spencers.)



The Mikado, Stanford Savoyards, 1992

The Makita
The Makita
T-shirt design. Kind of a local theater classic.
Now in its third printing.



The Gondoliers, Stanford Savoyards, 1991
Neil and I spent a long time working
on that skyline. Luckily we reused it later.


My very first design. I really didn't know what to
do, but I found a book from 1920 whose cover
I liked, and based this drawing on it. I've evolved since then.


Back to or top of page. Last edited around October 19, 2008.