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Michelle Hanks- Gene, playwright, creative team

Bird Mouth Founder, 

Michelle is an actress, emerging writer and director. She most recently performed 24 Day TheMeasure of my Dreams and in Next Please, part of The Key Worker's Cycle at Almeida Theatre. Michelle also performed with Arcola Theatre Mental Health Company and Arcola’s Women’s Company. Favourite shows there include, The Pleasure of Your Bedlam, Mind Games, The Elephant Leaves the Room, 143 I Couldn’t Have Done without You, Smile Darling and Women of Troy. Elsewhere in London, Michelle has performed with Page to Stage at Arcola Theatre, Script to Performance and Woodhouse Players.  

Michelle also performs her poetry with Keep It Under Your Hat, a monthly poetry night curated by Rosie Reed Gold, and Poetry Mondays, curated by Gabriel Moreno.  Michelle directed her play At Least I Can Dance and The Apartments by Verity Rowsell for the 2022 Camden Fringe. In 2021 Michelle directed, and performed her poetry in The Poetry Project at Tower Theatre.  Next her short play, And I was Fine, was featured at Theatripy in 2019 with Script to Performance, and Light at the End of the Tunnel, was featured at the 2019 Stoke Newington Literary festival with Sparks Theatre Collective, as well as part of Three Short Plays at Shamiyanna.  Michelle also directed her play, The Adventures of Kiki Hot Pants at Ryan’s Bar in 2017. 

Michelle has a BA in Theatre from University of Northern Colorado and also studied at The National Theatre Conservatory Summer Intensive. She has performed in theatre's throughout San Diego, Denver and Prague.

Michelle would like to thank Ryan’s Bar, the wonderful cast/ fellow Bird Mouth collaborators, Kimber for her lighting design, Simon Howard and Rosie Reed Gold for their photography and Jason Why at London Poetry Books for his extra support in marketing and promotion. 

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Anca Nana Vaida

Anca Vaida: Director 

Anca is a multi-award winning director, actress and writer and a BAFTA Connect Member. She trained at East 15 Drama School London, UK.
Anca's most recent project as a writer, director and producer, the short film "Too Important", screened at the 31st Raindance Film Festival, London 2023.
Anca wrote, directed, stared in and produced the TV Series “Psyched!”, a medical drama focused on mental health topics. “Psyched!” has over 50 awards and official selections at international film festivals, Anca receiving Best Director awards at World Independent Cinema (Edinburgh, 2023) and Queen Palm International (USA, 2021) and nominations at International Filmmaker Festival (London, 2021), I See You Awards (Michigan, 2021), Fusion Film Festival (London, 2022) and Film Fest International Paris (2023); as well as 7 Best Lead Actress award wins for the same series.

Other notable directing projects include the short films “Will”, which received Official selections at the New York Shorts International Film Festival (2022), Women’s International Film &Arts Festival (USA, 2023) and Catalina Film Festival (USA, 2023); “Can We Order First?” (Official selection at the Berlin Short Film Festival (2019), Cinema Systers (2022) and winner of the Jean Luc Godard for Best LGBT film (2021)) and “The Game”.

Theatre directing credits include “Maybe I do..?” (Camden Fringe Festival London 2023 - nominated for the prestigious Off West End (Offies) award: OffFest), “Me&Her” (Barons Court Theatre,London, 2022) and “Zhe” (Corbett Theatre, London, 2016).

Anca is a guest lecturer on the Filmmaking BA course at the Middlesex University, London, teaching the workshop “Directing Actors”.
She is also is a film judge at the Believe Psychology Film Festival, LA, California.

Anca is a frequent contributor on the “” initiative that brings drama training to children in Romania, holding masterclasses for the children as well as judging their short films in the competition.

In addition to film, Anca has an extensive theatre and radio acting career. She has worked on the BBC Radio 4 and BBC World Service programmes "Europe's Most Dangerous Capital" and "Cannabis and Mental Illness". She performed on the prestigious stage at the Almeida theatre in the play "24 (day): Measure of My Dreams"; at the Pleasance theatre in "Sorry, My Compassion is on the Blink" and at King's Head Theatre in "Fine and Dandy".

Instagram @anca_nana_vaida

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Virginia Brito

Virginia Brito: Sonya

Actress, Director


Trained professionally at EPTC (Escolha Profissional de Cascais), a distinguished drama school in Cascais, Portugal.

Graduated with Honours in Drama Performance and Theatre Studies from Roehampton University, London.

Completed TV and Film course at ARTE 6 - Portugal.

Attended a workshops on Stella Adler/Meisner Technique in Los Angeles, U.S.A.

Career Highlights:

- Founded theatre production company Valquerias in Portugal.

- Initiated her career at TEC (Teatro Experimental de Cascais), Portugal, under the guidance of Carlos Avilez.

- Notable productions include:

- "The Journalists" at the National Theatre, Lisbon, Portugal, directed by Jorge Lavelli.

- "The Road to Mecca" at the National Theatre, Porto, Portugal, directed by Joao Lourenço.

- "Carmelites" at The Royal Opera House, London, directed by Robert Carsen.

- "Light Shining in Buckinghamshire" at The National Theatre, London, directed by Lyndsey Turner.

Craft and Collaborations:

- Expanded her artistic endeavors, contributing as an actress in diverse companies like Valdevinos (Marionette) puppet, Musgo Theatre Co., Byfurcação Theatre Co., Livre Theatre Co.

- Recent participation in Community Theatre at Almeida Theatre in the play "24 (Day) The

Measure of My Dreams”.

 Ongoing Projects:

- Working on her Solo Performance, "At The Stage Door”.

- Rehearsing with the Bird Mouth Collective for their upcoming play, "News from Vauxhall”.

- Set to produce and direct a play in 2024 in Portugal.

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Buddleia Maslen -Buddleia Maslen-  Karen, The Boss/ multiple other characters

Actor, Bird Mouth Creative Team


Buddleia Maslen-  Karen, The Boss/ multiple other characters and  Creative Team for Bird Mouth Collective

Buddleia recently played Alice, in The Apartments & Linda, in  At Least I Can Dance with Bird Mouth Collective for the 2022 Camden Fringe.  She also often performs Cabaret with Phantansmagoria.  Buddleia is a performer and support worker from East London. She trained at Fourth Monkey drama school. She is a member of JPP theatre company, creating and performing work for Phantasmagoria Cabaret (Hoxton Hall) and variety shows at the Rich Mix and Poplar Union. Her other credits include: ‘Witness’ (Fourth Monkey) ‘Smile, Darling’ (Arcola Theatre), and ‘Liz and Mary’ (King’s Head Theatre).

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Alain English – Alphie/ creative team for Bird Mouth Collective 

Alain recently played Adam , in The Apartments, and  Benefit Consultant 1, Victorian Doctor 1 At Least I Can Dance  for Bird Mouth Collective's double bill at the 2022 Camden Fringe.

Alain is an actor and a poet based in London. He has extensive experience acting on stage in a wide variety of roles, most notably as King James in "5/11" and Mark Antony in "Julius Caesar" (both Network Theatre) as well as Prince Escalus in "Romeo and Juliet" (Stockwell Playhouse). Alain has worked with the Arcola Mental Health Theatre Group in "Headlines" in 2019 and "The Pleasure of Your Bedlam" in 2020. Alain also works with support workers instructing them about supporting people with autism/Asperger's Syndrome.  He is Artiste-in-Residence at the Tea House Theatre in Vauxhall. His website can be found at

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Sasha Bond

 Sasha Bond 

sound/stage manager/ creative team 

Sasha is a performer, visual artist, facilitator, writer and contemporary dancer.  She recently played in the Chorus in The Apartments and a benefit consultant, psychic and victorian doctor in At Least I can Dance for Bird Mouth Collective at the 2022 Camden Fringe. Sashar also performed with Arcola Theatre mental health Company in The Pleasure of you Bedlam, Headlines, and the Bacchae. Sasha has worked with Emergency Exit Arts/Walk the Plank and Blue Elephant Theatre. Sasha also trained in scenic art, prop making, costumes and technical theatre . She's worked also with Lewisham Youth Theatre and The Old Vic, as well as creative writing, futures theatre. 

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Kimber Wright- Lighting Designer/ Light Operator.

Kimber recently design lights for The Apartments and At Least I Can Dance for Bird Mouth Collective's performances at the 2022 Camden. Fringe. 

Kimber has been working her magic in lighting for Network Theatre and Woodhouse Players for the last ten years.  She also designed lights for the Poetry Project at Tower Theatre, and The Adventures of Kiki Hot Pants.  She once again teams up with Michelle to light up the stage.

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