Cast


Left to Right: Matt Young, Julia Weiss, Nick Wagner,  Sean Kelley,  
Griffen Eckstein, Irene Marquette, Mary Cait Walthall, Christopher Rathjen.

Griffen Eckstein(LtCdr. Fassbinder) began improvising at the Second City Training Center in Las Vegas before moving to Chicago 5 years ago. After graduating from the training center at iO (formerly Improv Olympic), he joined the theater as a member of Harold teams, including Hunter Family Crest, Classic Thunder and can currently be seen performing with Thank You, Dr. Science. He also co-produced and co-directed Improvised Star Trek's run at iO. Griffen is currently writing a one man show based on the instructional coaching videos of Hubie Brown.

Eleanor Hollingsworth (Counselor Rayvek) has a Theatre degree from College of Charleston and has been performing improv in Chicago since 2009. She studied at The Second City, The Annoyance, and iO. She has taught and performed improv around the world, and feels wildly lucky to call her Harold team "Big Spoon" home. 


Sean Kelley(LtCdr. Watson) Sean Kelley is an improvisational comedic performer and coach who has performed with improv teams around Chicago including Coup de Grace, Mike Helicopter, the Improvised Movie, and various others. As a lifelong Trek and sci-fi fan, Sean is honored to be a part of the Improvised Star Trek Podcast and live show. Sean also has a nerdy job as a Content Marketing Writer at HY Connect. Sean and his wife Chelsea write about life, fitness, and spaceships at their blog Frakking Shiny.

Eli Mandel (Acting Doctor Rip Stipley) is an improviser, actor and comedian. He is a lifelong Trekkie and could not be happier to be a part of Improvised Star Trek. When not exploring the unknown possibilities of existence on the Sisyphus, Eli can be seen with Trash Daddiez at iO, Shinbone Alley at CIC and Cool Jacket anywhere that will have them. Eli is from Central California and is very proud of that.




Christopher Rathjen(Cdr. Hayes; Podcast Production) is an actor, writer and filmmaker. During his time in Chicago he's been a member of some great groups at the iO Theater and around the city, including James Jackson, The Signatures, Ringo Starr, and The Talking Cure. He has brought Chicago comedy history to life with A Pocket Guide to Hell’s reenactment of The Compass Players and Studs' Place. He is a founder and co-owner of Very Clever Media, which produces the IST podcast. He's absolutely thrilled to part of Improvised Star Trek and, like James Tiberius Kirk, is a native of Iowa.


Nick Wagner(Ensign Lorem; Podcast Production) is an improviser, director, and writer. He performed with the Improvised Shakespeare Company and Laugh Out Loud Theater, and is a founder and co-owner of Very Clever Media, which has been responsible for several award-winning short films. He grew up watching TOS (that’s Star Trek: The Original Series) in syndication from his home near Galesburg, IL.

Mary Cait Walthall(Dr. Zarlene Zonalzon) is an improviser, actor, writer, and a generally silly person. In addition to her weekly forays where no one has gone before, she currently improvises with Super Human at the iO Theater. You can also see her this May at the Chicago Humanities Festival as Randy Davies, a bumbling bodyguard who plays detective in Theater Unspeakable’s Murder on the Midwest Express. She has performed around town at the Apollo Theater, the Annoyance, the Playground, Studio Be, and the Upstairs Gallery, among other places.


Julia Weiss(Lt. Rita King) is an improviser, writer and actor in Chicago who loves food and other people's children. She is delighted and honored to be a part of the Improvised Star Trek cast.  Julia is a regular contributor to the Paper Machete, a storyteller about town and a member of Second City's National Touring Company.  She's also a very cool playwright and her play, Tammy: A Coming of Age Story About a Girl Who's Part T-Rex is something you should purchase. Julia would like to thank her first grade self for slamming a car door on her pinky finger, enabling her to learn the Vulcan Salute before her tiny, child hand was ready.

Matt Young(Captain Baxter)is an actor, writer, improv coach, and teacher, and he couldn’t be happier about being a cast member of the Improvised Star Trek (in all mediums). He has appeared in Whirled News Tonight since its inception in 2003 and is also a proud member of the Improvised Shakespeare Company. He has also appeared in other improvised shows and groups such as The Welcome to Your 30s Boys, Concept Album, James Jackson, and The Diplomat Motel. He has appeared in commercials for companies such as YouTube, Honda, Old Style, and Comcast. www.actormattyoung.com





The Irregulars:
Dan Granata (Live Show Foley/FX/Computer) is an actor, writer, and producer. He's appeared on Chicago stages with regularity bordering on the pathological, both as an improvisor and in productions with companies like Strawdog, The Hypocrites, Factory Theatre, Lifeline Theatre and the late great New Leaf Theatre. He's a frequent contributor to the weekly live magazine The Paper Machete, and featured on the WBEZ podcast of the same name. During the day, Dan makes stuff for awesome people as a member of the team at Marshall Creative. Other things can be found at dangranata.com.

Roger Payton(Podcast Production, Various Roles) Roger is a veteran improviser of Chicago, having performed for years at IO Chicago and the Playground Theater, he also currently performs with the two man improv/sketch duo "The Talking Cure".  He graduated from the University of Wisconsin Steven Point in 2002, with a B.A in Mass Media Communications and a B.A in Theater.  He puts his professional editing skills to work as a part time editor for Improvised Star Trek, editing episodes for the podcasts.  He also occasionally sits in as an improviser and special guest with the crew on missions. 

Hannah Kate Parsons (Podcast Production/Back-Up Computer) is an actor, improvisor, editor and IST groupie who transplanted herself from California to the decidedly season-full City of Chicago for, I know it's cliche, the vegan doughnuts. Back in California she attained her BFA in Acting at CSU Fullerton, a place she credits for teaching her many things, the most relevant of which being that she'd rather live in Chicago. She performs currently at iO and Second City (mostly in class) and the occasional theater or empty bar with her buddies. She gets the biggest thrill from making the playful cast of IST sound slick and professional and she intends to support them with the radiance of a thousand suns forever.

Eric Scull (Podcast Production) is a veteran podcast host and (sometimes) actor who has appeared on over 500 published podcast episodes. Beginning in 2005 with MuggleNet.com's Harry Potter podcast "MuggleCast," Eric quickly gained a reputation for his wordiness and critical thinking, skills he continues to exercise on MuggleCast, as well as MuggleNet's global re-read podcast "Alohomora!" and on the very successful Game of Thrones podcast "Game of Owns," which since Season 2 has been reviewing the Song of Ice and Fire series, books and television. Originally from Reading, Pennsylvania, Eric's greatest passion is travel, but while in Chicago he pursues a degree in English at DePaul University and enjoys all of the excitement that the city has to offer. Eric is a recent Trek fan, currently making his way through DS9 following enjoyable treks through TNG and Voyager. He is inspired by the creativity displayed on this show and passionate about producing quality content for it.