American Hero

By Bess Wohl
Directed by Shawn Lee

October 4, 2016 – October 30, 2016

Alder Stage

When the American Dream is dashed, try making a sandwich! A trio of disparate and desperate ‘sandwich artists’ find themselves abandoned by their fast-food franchise and left to their own devices in this utterly amusing and ridiculously believable story of making ends “meat and cheese.” This post-recession, comedic commentary embraces the humor in misery, the creativity in despair, and the ingenuity of the human spirit as this indomitable group bands together to succeed on their own damned terms.

  • Satirical comedy on the pursuit of happiness 
  • NW Premiere

RUN TIME: Approximately 1 hour 30 minutes. No intermission.


Cast and Production Team


Emily Eisele ±


Val Landrum +^


Mueen Jahan +



Shawn Lee


Bess Wohl



Scenic Designer: Megan Wilkerson #^

Lighting Designer: Kristeen Willis #

Costumer Designer: Emily Horton

Composer/Sound Designer: Jen Raynak

Properties Master: Kaye Blankenship

Fight Choreographer : Jonathan Cole *^

Dramaturg: Luan Schooler

Stage Manager: Carol Ann Wohlmut +^

Assistant Director: Nate Cohen

Production Assistant: Karen M. Hill +

Board Op: Jason Coffey

+ Member of Actors Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the U.S.

* Member of Stage Directors and Choreographers Society

# The scenic, costume, lighting, projection & sound designers are represented by United Scenic Artists

± Equity Membership Candidate

^ Artists Rep Resident Artist

Production Media




“…the beauty of this story is that the human spirit will endure, in spite of odds against it, and the “little men,” in all of us, from kings to knaves, will have their say.” - Dennis Sparks, Dennis Sparks Reviews

“The laughs come freely, and yet there is a deft balance between them and the depressing reality of the story. It ends on a note just hopeful enough, and perhaps that the best we can expect from both the play and the situation we find ourselves in as a country.” - Kris Haines, The Crippled Critic

“…Kafka-esque milieu of this country’s corporate fast-food industry…” Judy Nedry, Judy Nedry Reviews

“Wohl’s way with one-liners delivers good and plentiful dollops of sit-com-style humor…” - Marty Hughley, ArtsWatch

“…Emily Eisele is fantastic in her role of Sheri, the directionless Millennial. Walk into any franchise across America, and you'll likely find someone exactly like her.” - Krista Garver,

"AMERICAN HERO underscores that even when the work may get you down, the people you work with can give you a lift." - The New York Times

"AMERICAN HERO calls to mind a range of anxiety-generating post-recession narratives." - NBC New York

"AMERICAN HERO is a supersized dark comedy about life, liberty, and the pursuit of sandwiches." - Detroit Performs

"The themes and memes presented in AMERICAN HERO is that the individual is still the cornerstone of economic growth, that when given a chance to innovate, most everyone can find and use those creative muscles once again, and within that gift there is always hope." - Berkshire On Stage and Screen

"AMERICAN HERO is a meaty play with plenty to chew on, so be sure to go and grab a bite." - Berkshire On Stage and Screen

"Wohl has a light touch with the comedy." - Times Union


To learn more about the playwright, visit her biography here.

Experience a piece of the 2013 world premiere of AMERICAN HERO here.

The beginning of the script references an incident regarding a Quiznos franchisee that may have been an initial inspiration for the events in AMERICAN HERO. For more information on this incident, visit here.

Download our Study Guide for this production here. A great resource for all!