David Gochfeld (Kip Kiplinger) has performed all over the U.S., in Canada, the UK, and in some teeny tiny towns in Russia. He is an actor, clown, musician, and puppeteer, and has also directed & devised a number of new works, including for the LITE Company's highly-acclaimed ChekhovNOW! festival. Recent credits: Fabian in the SaBooge Company's 'Fathom' (Montreal), The Doctor in 'Stress Test' (Vital Theater), 'Master of Prayer' at the Metroplitan Playhouse, and multiple roles in the farces of Chekhov on tour in Russia. He has also performed at Dance Theater Workshop, with Gorilla Rep, and with Synapse Productions. David studied with Jacques LeCoq and Phillipe Gaulier, as well as at the National Shakespeare Conservatory and Oberlin College. David plays a number of fretted instruments (being so fretful himself), and also works professionally as a photographer.
Rachel Kramer (Kippy Kiplinger) has been acting, singing, improvising, clowning & building puppets in New York City for the past 20 years (but not at the same time). She originated the role of 'Wrath' for Cirque Boom, and spent three seasons in the ring of Brooklyn-based Circus Amok. She has worked with the Czech-American Marionette Theater (The Golem), Judith Shakespeare Company, and in the title role of Sharon Fogarty's 'Bride of Frankenstein'. Rachel has done clowning on Royal Caribbean cruise ships, performed six shows a day on Ellis Island, and appeared in print advertisements and a number of independent films. She was something of a regular with the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus, both with The Kourageous Kiplingers, and as a solo trapeze performer. Her training includes the National Shakespeare Conservatory, Actors Movement Studio, NY Goofs Clown School and a BA in Theater from SUNY Binghamton. She studied static trapeze with Tanya Gagne. Rachel has worked as an Artist in Residence in NYC Public Schools, teaching introductory circus skills to a variety of students. She has also done clowning at the Foundling Hospital (NYC), as part of Pickles & Ginger. Most recently she has been in Melbourne, Australia, where she played Titania in A Midsummer Night's Dream, performs solo static trapeze, and is a teaching artist for the Victorian Arts Centre and Circus Oz. As Kippy/Koester Kiplinger (solo) she has performed at the Tasmanian Circus Festival and in & on Bondi Beach.
The Kourageous Kiplingers happened after Dave & Rachel finished 6 months of seclusion in a basement, building puppets for two short pieces in the ChekhovNOW! Festival. No longer able to see in broad daylight, they traded in their glue guns for kazoos, and have never looked back. The act began as a one-off, and grew around the unnerving fact the both David and Rachel owned the original sheets to the same obscure 1925 hit "Don't Bring Lulu". Their first audience's instant embrace of their three-song set, and of the characters Kip and Kippy, led to three years of performing short sets at nearly a dozen cabaret & new vaudeville venues around New York, most especially regular spots with The Bindlestiff Family Cirkus at The Palace of Variety, and at the Bowery Poetry Club, Galapagos, Union Pool, Surf Reality and Dixon Place. They have been privileged to perform with: Senor Eli Shapiro, Andrew Innes, Angelo Iodice (world-renowned rodeo and circus trick-rider and trick-roper), and Sue Broadway (founding member of Circus Oz).
Their shows include classic schtick (both new and pillaged), and the couple are proud to have been called "Burns & Allen in sensible shoes". Kippy's style has been compared to the warmth & presence of Betty Hutton singing for the troops, and Kip's role as hapless accompanist has been likened to Stan Laurel or even Jimmy Stewart. After 2 years of performing their double act, Rachel introduced the character of Grampa Koester, peppery patriarch of this show business dynasty, bringing both the banter and the innuendo to a whole new level.