KIDSTAGE Teaching Artists
Village Theatre KIDSTAGE youth education classes, camps, and productions are led by some of the region’s finest teaching artists, directors, choreographers, music directors, and musical theatre writers and composers. They are listed alphabetically by first name.
Village Theatre Youth Education staff members frequently interact with students and families as well. They are listed at the bottom of this page along with their titles.
A PNW native, Adam grew up as a wee lad in the quaint city of Olympia, WA before venturing up to Seattle and earning his degree in Music Composition, Playwriting, and Directing from Cornish College of the Arts. An active member of the fabulous Seattle theater community for more than 10 years, Adam has had the pleasure of acting as the Issaquah KIDSTAGE Originals composing mentor for the past six years, working alongside incredible youth artists to create, develop, and give life to multiple original musical productions.
Aimee is a Music Director, Accompanist, Conductor, and Voice and Piano Teacher. Some of her favorite musicals she’s Music Directed are “Into the Woods”, “Heathers the Musical”, “Godspell”, “Sweeney Todd”, “Big Fish” and “[title of show]”. She has MD’d/worked at Bellevue College (where she is also an Adjunct Music Professor), The Seattle Rep, Seattle Children’s Theater, Studio East, Reboot Theatre Company, Renton Civic Theater, Bainbridge Performing Arts, Lesser Known Players, Burien Actor’s Theatre, Second Story Repertory, and St Luke’s Theater Company. Previously she taught with the Seattle Symphony and the Seattle Opera. She studied Music Education at Western Washington University.
Alyssa is an actor, voice and dialect coach, writer, and podcast producer. Recent acting credits include: Fanny in Howl’s Moving Castle (Book-It Repertory Theatre), Maggie in Yen (ACT), Lili in Why We Have a Body (Strawshop), and Yvette in Mother Courage (Seattle Shakespeare Company). Recent voice and dialect coaching includes: What We Were (Pony World Theatre), Austen’s Pride, West Side Story (5th Ave); Language Rooms (Pony World); Jitterbug Perfume (Café Nordo). She has coached dialects for A Christmas Carol at ACT for over a dozen years and in 2013 was featured in an episode of ArtZone with Nancy Guppy. Alyssa has been the voice for numerous companies, including Les Schwab, Northwest Source, AT&T, Tulalip Casino, Taco Time, and Microsoft. Her voice can currently be heard as the narrator for several podcasts, including “Opening Doors” and “SoundPages,” for which she is also a co-producer. Alyssa’s face can currently be seen on network and cable TV in ads for JG Wentworth. During quarantine, she has stayed busy served as a voice coach and narrator for the literary anthology Unmuted: Stories of Courage and Resilience From the GenPride Community and performing as a voice actor for the radio play podcast The Life and Times of Victoria C. Woodhull, Future Presidentess. Additionally, she proudly contributed to helping to end the pandemic by recording voice-overs to train Covid-19 contract tracers. Alyssa has been a faculty member at SFI, SCT, Seattle University, Wedgwood Drama Studio, and Cornish College of the Arts. In 2019 she was a co-hort member of TAT Lab. Alyssa studied at the Centre Artistique International Roy Hart in Thoiras, France in 2012 and graduated magna cum laud from Cornish College of the Arts in 2000. She currently resides in the woodsy oasis of Shoreline, WA with her husband and their cat, Martha.
Ana María (she/her) is a Mexican-American theatre artist, educator, and advocate. Regionally, she has worked for OSF, Seattle Children’s Theatre, and Seattle Repertory Theatre among many others. One of her most cherished acting roles is Catherine in a bilingual adaptation of David Auburn’s Proof, which she also produced and translated alongside director Arlene Martínez-Vásquez. She’s developed multiple bilingual scripts for Seattle Shakespeare Company; her fifth adaptation, Romeo y Julieta, premiered spring 2021 under the direction of Sophie Franco. She works as a Theatre Mentor for Arts Impacts’ Voices from the Field Program, working with fantastic public school teachers in migrant districts across Washington state. She has toured nationally in Living Voices’s solo show, La Causa. Recently, she was one one of five Associate Artists with ArtsWest Theatre for their 2021-2022 Season. She currently serves on the board for Sound Theatre and was newly named as Associate Artist for Seattle Shakespeare Company. In addition to her work within the arts, she founded and now runs the volunteer collective, WashMasks Mutual Aid, to provide PPE, support, and advocacy for migrant and seasonal farm workers and their families during this current pandemic (www.washmasks.org; @washmasks on Instagram).
Andrew (they/he) is a Seattle-based director, choreographer, devising artist, & teaching artist, and they couldn’t be more excited to be a part of the Village Theater Teaching Faculty. Their teaching philosophy is centered in being an ally to each young artist’s individual journey to mastery; the goal is simple: That by the end of the class each student can say, “I did it!” Andrew graduated from Whitworth University with a BA in Theater, English – Literature, and Community Based Theater before touring domestically and internationally as a Tour Actor/Director with Missoula Children’s Theater for 3 years. Since then, Andrew has received a Masters of Fine Arts in Directing from the University of Washington School of Drama (2021) and a Masters of Arts in Educational Theater from New York University – Steinhardt (2015). Throughout their career, Andrew has worked in many theater organizations across the country, such as Opening Act (NYC), Stages on the Sound (Brooklyn), Spotlight Youth Theater (Chicago), Seattle Opera, Seattle Repertory Theater, Seattle Children’s Theater, and the University of Washington to name a few. At Studio East, they also served as the Teaching Artist Training Specialist and has been utilizing EDIA work and training throughout their practice for many years. As a Youth Theater Director & Choreographer, some highlight credits include In the Heights (Village, Everett), Once on this Island (Studio East, Seattle), Into the Woods (Studio East, Seattle), James & The Giant Peach (Village, Issaquah), Disney’s Beauty & The Beast (EDP, Seattle), and Disney’s The Little Mermaid (Kitsap Forest Theater). A fun fact about Andrew is that they LOVE Frozen so much that they named their dog after a song from the musical: Hygge! AndrewCoopman.com
Andrew graduated from the University of Washington with a Bachelor’s Degree of Music in Viola Performance and from Seattle Pacific University with a Master’s Degree in Viola. He currently teaches at Village KIDSTAGE as an Educational Music Teacher and Director and is the Music Director for MyFloss Productions. Andrew enjoys transcribing and arranging music, as well as performing at weddings with a string quartet. He lives in Seattle with his cat.
Anna is a graduate of Western Washington University, having concentrated in Stage Management and Technical Theatre. She was a part of Seattle Repertory’s 2019-2020 Professional Artist Training Program as a Stage Management Apprentice on The Children and new musical, Shout Sister Shout!. She has helped mentor stage management students with Intiman Theatre’s Starfish Project as well as at The 5th Avenue Theatre’s Rising Star Project. From 2018-2019 she also served as the Drama Assistant for Shorewood High School’s theatre department.
Anthony is now in his 8th year as the Play Writing mentor for KIDSTAGE’s New Works program. As a writer, he has more than 25 plays and screenplays to his credit. Seattle has seen the premieres of several of his plays including Café Ooh Longue, BlackJack, Unidentified Flying Object, Red, White & Turning Blue, Rumpelstiltskin and That Millennium Thing. He was commissioned by the Seattle Opera to help create a children’s adaptation of Mozart’s The Magic Flute for both a Northwest tour and recording. He was a recipient of the Artist Trust Fellowship for Playwrights. His screenplay, The Sand Sea, is in now pre-production and scheduled for filming in England and Morocco in Spring of 2022. But most of all, he loves working with these incredible young people as they create a new musical.
Ariel is happy to be returning to Village KIDSTAGE Issaquah for the Pop-Up Production series. Her previous production includes Black Lives Matter: Inspired by 13 the Musical. Other regional credits include Steel Magnolias at Taproot Theatre and Peter and the Starcatcher at Lakewood Playhouse. She is a graduate from Pacific Lutheran University.
Ben has been teaching voice for over ten years and uses an integrated form of movement and acting technique to tell stories through the art form of voice. He has worked on a wide range of musicals in a variety of theaters. Notable credits include: conductor/pianist at the acclaimed Marriott Theatre in Chicago; music director/accompanist for The 5th Avenue Theatre; resident music director/conductor for some of Broadway’s most beloved and award-winning shows at the Spokane Civic Theatre in Spokane, WA.
Carly loves being a teaching artist at KIDSTAGE! She has also taught at Creative Dance Center, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Backstage Dance Studio, and Central Washington University. Carly is also a director and choreographer and has worked at KIDSTAGE Everett (Willy Wonka Jr., Seussical KIDS, Aladdin KIDS, Chicago: High School Edition), Everett High School, Seattle Children’s Theatre Drama School, Liberty High School, Newport High School, as well as Blanchet High School, Issaquah Middle School, Forest Ridge School, and Auburn Riverside High School.
Carter is an actor, musician, and visual artist. He has performed with Seattle Shakespeare Co., Annex Theatre, Theatre Anonymous, Pony World, Wooden O, Book-It Repertory Theatre, Theatre Schmeater, Capitol Hill Arts Center, 14/48, Café Nordo, NW New Works Festival, 12 Minutes Max, The Freehold Engaged Theatre Tour, Thriving Artists, and many others including the Canadian Fringe Festivals in Edmonton and Winnipeg. Film and TV credits include Good Kisser, Brown’s Canyon, Colton, Singles, Police Beat, Manchego!, Grimm, and Z Nation. He is a founding member of critically acclaimed absurdist trio, Le Frenchword, and a core acting teacher at Freehold Studio/Theatre Lab. He also directs Freehold’s Engaged Theatre Residency at the Men’s Correctional Complex in Monroe WA–guiding inmates through the process of writing and performing original theatre. He is the guitarist and singer for the genre-hybrid, dark-groove trio Baby Crow Flight School.
Christie holds a Master of Music in Musical Theatre Performance and an Advanced Certificate in Vocal Pedagogy from NYU, Steinhardt. With a varied background in theater and music education for more than 20 years, she is also an accomplished performing artist (under the stage name Christie Lynn Devoe), having performed regularly in the Seattle and NYC area. A passionate teaching artist, voice teacher, and music director, you can find her collaborating at places like NYU, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Village Theatre, Seattle Opera, and her private voice studio www.rotariusvoice.com.
Claire is excited to be back at KIDSTAGE! She works locally as an actor, music director, and teaching artist. She was in the ensemble of Hairspray for Village Theatre’s Mainstage and has also worked with Seattle Rep, Sound Theatre, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Seattle Shakespeare, and Seattle Public Theatre. She has music directed for a handful of KIDSTAGE productions including: Chicago, Les Misérables School Edition, James and the Giant Peach, 9 to 5, Peter Pan, and the annual Sing it Forward Soiree.
Cy is a Director/Choreographer/Performer who has dedicated their life to music theatre and the power it holds to bring positivity and change. In the span of 17 years, Cy has worked at notable venues such as: The Kennedy Center, Arena Stage, The 5th Ave, Village Theatre, NYMF, NY Fringe, touring as a dancer with Steven Van Zandt, as well as tv/film/commercial work. Select credits: Matilda (Village); Holiday Inn (5th Ave); Oklahoma! (Arena); Knuffle Bunny, Wings, The Phantom Tollbooth (The Kennedy Center); Rockers on Broadway (with Tituss Burgess); Williamsburg! The Musical (NY Fringe); Petite Rouge (NYMF).
Danielle is a nationally produced playwright based in Seattle, WA. Her plays have been developed at Arena Stage, the Kennedy Center, the Cherry Lane Theatre, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, Cygnet Theatre, Rorschach Theatre, Field Trip Theatre, Umbrella Project, Youth Theatre Northwest, The Scratch & Really Really Theatre Group, and Seattle Public Theater, among others. Danielle is an alumna of Playwrights’ Arena at Arena Stage, the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities Artist Fellowship, and the Umbrella Project Writers Group. She is a proud graduate of both Cal Poly Pomona and Emerson College. She is currently developing multiple projects for theatre, film, and audio formats.
Danny has spent the last decade teaching and performing musical theatre throughout the greater Seattle area. Besides Village Theatre’s KIDSTAGE Institute, Danny teaches at Seattle Children’s Theatre and Cornish College of the Arts as well as maintaining a private vocal studio. His private students have worked professionally at The 5th Avenue Theatre, Village Theatre, ACT, Seattle Opera, SCT, Book-it Rep and others. As an actor, his Village Theatre credits include: String, Billy Elliot, ZM, The Passage, Great Wall, The Noteworthy Life of Howard Barnes, Big River, In the Heights, and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. Once a KIDSTAGE kid, always a KIDSTAGE kid!
Donovan participated in the Village Theatre Arts Education Internship in 2018 and has been teaching with KIDSTAGE ever since. He has a love for teaching all age groups about theatre and performing. Donovan performed in Village Theatre’s KIDSTAGE productions of Aida, Crazy for You, and Sister Act. Donovan hopes to positively impact and inspire youth to express their creativity and find a love of preforming.
Emily is a teaching and performing artist. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre from Western Washington University with a Dance Minor. She grew up as a KIDSTAGE kid and is excited to be back teaching! When not at KIDSTAGE, she enjoys teaching and performing all over the Seattle area. Emily spends her weekends performing with Seattle’s Princesses. Recent shows include, Western Washington University’s productions of Miss Julie, how to clean your room (and remember all your trauma), Winter Dances 2019-2020, HereToo-WWU, Commedia In The Park, An American Daughter and WWU Student Theatre productions of Copenhagen, Better Days, and Snapshot. Emily hopes to learn and grow alongside her students, as well as teach them all the wonderful skills, lessons, and stories that theatre has taught her over the years.
Faith is a Jamaican-African American, Brooklyn New York native, fighter and activist for Racial and Social justice pushing against barriers and taking on the status quo. She is an Actor, Director, Teaching Artist and Chorographer and has been for the past 30 plus years. She has also served as the Education Assistant Manager for Village Theatre’s KIDSTAGE program. Past Directorial credits include, *Legally Blonde (ShowTunes Theater CO), *CROWNS (Taproot Theatre), In The Heights (Village Theatre KIDSTAGE) Once On This Island (Studio East).
(*Broadway World Regional Award Nominee, Best Director of a Musical)
Gabe has worked in both Issaquah and Everett in the past as a teaching instructor and assistant director. He is a published children’s musical theatre writer, director, and actor and has been an elementary school teacher for the past seven years including work running a Spanish Immersion multi-age program. He has worked as an educational director at Kids Discovery Museum, Jewel Box Theatre, and Bainbridge Performing Arts. He has a passion for curriculum and his training in educational/behavioral ideologies and how theater helps students thrive!
Gloria (they/them) is a theatre artist and educator based in Seattle, WA and received their BFA in Theatre from Cornish College of the Arts in 2019. Gloria is ecstatic to be in their first year with KIDSTAGE teaching Pathway to Institute’s 1st year Musical Theatre students. Gloria has a background in vocal performance, extensive dance and acting training and has been onstage in Seattle at Seattle Shakespeare Company, The Taproot Theatre, Intiman Theatre and many others. Gloria has a mission to cultivate art spaces that, through story, connect us to each other and ourselves so that we may learn, grow, grieve, and heal. When not in the theatre, Gloria is often taking strolls through Seattle parks with their puppy Gallie or paddle boarding on Lake Union.
Hannah White is a teaching and performing artist. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theatre from Cornish College of the Arts. At her dance studio growing up, Hannah was an assistant teacher for a variety of classes and ages, eventually teaching and choreographing for her own ballet, tap, and tumbling classes. At Cornish, Hannah performed in James and the Giant Peach, Company, Jesus Christ Superstar and Chicago, and was also dance captain for JCS and Chicago. She has worked with KIDSTAGE before – in 2018, she was the assistant choreographer for Everett’s Summer Independent Production of Bring It On: The Musical. Hannah is thrilled to be back teaching with the Everett KIDSTAGE team.
Jasmine is an Actor, Director, and Playwright specializing in Original Works. She completed her Village Theatre Arts Educational Internship in 2017 and has worked intermittently with KIDSTAGE. Her recent credits include When a Tree Falls premiering at 18th and Union, Chalk at 18th and Union, and Raisins in a Glass of Milk at Taproot Theatre. She is currently extending her solo show Thicc Girl Problems: Eating my Feelings for Macha Theatre Works’ 17 Minute Stories. When Jasmine is not on stage, she is enjoying time with her son Kayden, and her two dogs.
Jessica holds a Bachelor of Arts in Drama from The University of Washington and works as a director, choreographer, performer, and educator in the Seattle area and beyond. She has worked with Village Theatre and KIDSTAGE for 15 years. Serving 5 of those years as the Institute manager in Everett. Village Theatre Mainstage credits include:Xanadu, Big River, Annie Get Your Gun, Jesus Christ Superstar, It Shoulda Been You, 42nd Street, The Full Monty, Tommy, Beauty and the Beast, Saint Heaven; Associate Director for Newsies, Singin’ In The Rain, Billy Elliot; Choreographer for The Passage and The Tutor. Other Professional Credits: The 5th Avenue, ACT, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Arizona Theatre Company, Showtunes, Harlequin Productions, ArtsWest, Sound Theatre Company, Seattle Musical Theatre, Coeur d‘Alene Summer Theatre, and the Bigfork Summer Playhouse. KIDSTAGE credits: 12+ shows including School of Rock, A Christmas Story, Chicago, Shrek Jr.,and The Little Mermaid. Jessica also works with NM Entertainment as the Director of Singing for Seniors. She is a Gregory Award recipient for Outstanding Choreography for The Wild Party produced by Sound Theatre Company in 2014. www.jessicaannlow.com
Jes is in her seventh full season at Village Theatre and couldn’t be happier to work with this team in the thriving Seattle theatre community. Jes has worked around the country in arts management, administration, as a Director, and production for such companies as Arts Center Enterprises, Inc., Nebraska Theatre Caravan, and locally for Taproot Theatre and The Inverse Opera. Directing credits include: She Loves Me (Village Theatre, Assoc. Dir.), Modern (Director, VOFNM19), Cubamor (Asst. Dir., 29-hr Reading), and Sincerely Yours (KIDSTAGE Originals). Additional local directing credits include: Spitfire Grill (Showtunes!), Anne of Green Gables (SSR), Violet (Asst. Dir., ArtsWest), and others at Taproot Theatre Company.
Jimmy is a performing and teaching artist from the Pierce County area. He has always known the arts was his calling and has never set his sights on anything else! Not just a lover of being on the stage, Jimmy is also an established choreographer and budding director. Recent theater credits include: Hairspray with Village Theatre (Gilbert/Co-Choreographer); Legally Blonde with Showtunes Theatre Company (Choreographer); Matilda with Village Theatre (Ensemble/Associate Choreographer); the west-coast premiere of Polkadots: The Cool Kids Musical with Tacoma Musical Playhouse (Director/Choreographer); and the Village Theatre new work Hansel and Gretl and Heidi and Gunter (Choreographer).
Jon Lutyens works as a cross-disciplinary theatre artist around the Puget Sound region. As an actor, Jon’s work has been enjoyed by audiences at ACT Theatre, Village Theatre, Strawberry Theatre Workshop, Taproot Theatre, Book-It Repertory, Showtunes Theatre Company and several others in the region. As an educator, Jon has worked and continues to work in curriculum and after school for public schools in Seattle and Everett for 15 years. Across all disciplines, Jon is committed to working toward a future with greater acceptance and support for all theatre-makers of any age. Jon is a Theatre Arts graduate of WWU, and a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association.
Josh Zimmerman is thrilled to be part of this wonderful program! He is a recipient of Broadway World Seattle and Gypsy Rose Lee awards for music direction. Credits include Assistant Music Director/Keys 2 for GREASE: das Musical (Musical Tommy GmbH) and Children’s Music Director for the first national tour of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s School of Rock (Troika). He maintains a private studio and accompanies for Cornish College of the Arts and Pacific Northwest Ballet.
Kataka has been dedicated to performing musical theatre and strives to create meaningful art. They devote their time to training, performing, and teaching students the art of theatre and the many life skills this art form creates. Kataka is excited to inspire, collaborate with, and support student artists from all walks of life. They’ve most recently been seen in the Village Theatre “Welcome Home – A Holiday Concert”, and continue to work with The 5th Avenue Theatre, and ArtsWest Playhouse and Gallery (Mopsa in the 2019 production of “Head Over Heels”).
Kate (she/her) is an actor, director, educator, and improviser. She works with KIDSTAGE in both Issaquah and Everett as an instructor and director. Shows she has directed for KIDSTAGE include: Les Misérables School Edition, Beauty and the Beast, and Urinetown (Everett); Freaky Friday (Issaquah). Kate has also been an actor on the Village Theatre Mainstage; her roles include Miss Adelaide in Guys & Dolls and Madame Thénardier in Les Misérables. Additionally, Kate has worked with 14/48, ArtsWest, Book-It Repertory, Jet City Improv, Macha Theatre Works, New Voices, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Taproot Theatre Company, and Teatro Zinzanni.
Krista holds a Bachelor of Arts from Western Washington University in music and theatre. She participated in the KIDSTAGE Arts Education Internship in 2015 and has been teaching with KIDSTAGE ever since. She has a love for teaching voice, acting, and piano to all age groups, and has taught through public schools and afterschool organizations in Bellingham, as well as private lessons. In the mornings, she is the music teacher at Sammamish Children’s School. Krista has performed in KIDSTAGE SummerStock and Summer Independent Productions, including Tarzan, Legally Blonde, and 9 to 5.
Kyle wears many hats as a theatre artist, as a director, actor, designer, producer, administrator and teaching artist. Now Kyle has the pleasure of being the Company Manager for Village! Aside from the stage, Kyle has worked in film & voiceover as well. Working up and down the west coast. Additionally, he has spent many years working in casting and human resources for arts institutions and for Holland America and Princess Cruises. Kyle was a founding member and Artistic Director of Seattle’s Fantastic. Z Theatre, which sadly closed in 2020 after producing over 12 years of some of Puget Sound’s most inspired LGBTQ+ theatre. Kyle focuses his acting class on physical theatre. Utilizing the Viewpoints method, students will learn new techniques to strengthen their presence and promote teamwork and the building of ensemble. Kyle is passionate about inclusivity, creating a safe space (emotionally and physically) to work in, and having fun as students grow as young artists!
Mackenzie is a dance instructor, choreographer, and performing artist based in Seattle. She works with students of all ages and levels throughout the Seattle area from ages 8 – 68. Her expertise is in theatre jazz, tap, and ballet, with experience in hip-hop, contemporary, and swing. As a choreographer, her work was last seen with Nice Work if You Can Get It (2022) and Curtains (2019) with Woodland Park Players, and Legally Blonde (2018) with Seattle Musical Theatre. Mackenzie is a member of the Coharie Tribe.
Meagan is always so thrilled to be teaching with Kidstage! A former Kidstage kid herself, Meagan went on to complete her Arts Education Internship in 2014, and has been teaching with the program ever since. She last performed in Legally Blonde (Showtunes), and has taught with Reflections School of Dance, and in special education. Meagan has had the honor & privilege of performing as a percussionist at Carnegie Hall, conducted by her mother & guest conducted by her grandfather. Currently, she attends Arizona State University where she is pursuing a degree in Speech & Hearing Sciences. She is a Disney College Program alum and loves all things magic, most things coffee, and her favorite tv show is Survivor!
Megan began her Musical Theatre career at the early age of five (5) in Village Theatre’s first new musical, Beanstalk. Although Megan loved performing, she quickly developed a love of teaching dance and choreography as well. Her mission, to inspire and empower her dance students to express themselves through movement no matter their age or experience. Megan began choreographing and teaching dance in her late teens and has not stopped since having choreographed the SeaGals, Stealth Bombsquad, and tens of musicals and special events. Megan studied dance at the University of Washington, Cornish College of the Arts, Westlake Dance Center, and many studios across the region. Megan is A.C.E. certified and remains a lover of learning, continuing to take classes of all genres locally and across the US and Europe.
Megan graduated from Central Washington University with a BFA in Musical Theatre Cum Laude and has been working as a choreographer, performer, and teaching artist across the Northwest. Immediately upon graduation, she was hired as the resident choreographer and dance instructor for the Central BFA Musical Theatre Program. Megan has since been working across the PNW including Oregon Children’s Theatre, Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre, Leavenworth Summer Theatre, The Broadway Rose Theatre Company, Seattle Musical Theatre, Spotlight Musical, Theatre Academy, and Walt Disney World.
Melissa has been a KIDSTAGE instructor since 2013. She has taught and music directed at The Evergreen School, Mount Rainier High School, Tacoma Musical Playhouse, and Olympia Family Theatre. Performance credits include: Village Theatre, Cafe Nordo, Harlequin Productions, Florida Studio Theatre, Norwegian Cruise Lines, and Celebrity Cruises. Learn more about Melissa’s teaching style and studio at her website: www.melismaticstudios.com.
Michael (he/him) is excited to be back teaching songwriting for KIDSTAGE. Michael loves to stay busy on as many projects as possible and has recently worked on: Hansel & Gretl & Heidi & Gunter, The 25th Annual…Spelling Bee, A Proper Place, String, Newsies, …Howard Barnes, (Village Theatre); Jasper in Deadland, Little Shop of Horrors, Urinetown (The 5th Avenue Theatre); How to Succeed…, The Addams Family, James and the Giant Peach Jr., Hairspray, Urinetown, Beauty and the Beast, Oliver!, Les Misérables, School of Rock (KIDSTAGE).
Molli holds a degree in theatre from Western Washington University. She has worked as an actor, singer, and educator in the greater Seattle area for over ten years. In addition to teaching for Village Theatre’s KIDSTAGE, Molli also teaches public health at elementary schools across the state of Washington. As an actor, Molli has worked largely at the Seattle Children’s Theatre. Some of her favorite roles include: Pippi in Pippi Longstocking, Cat/Bear/Mouse in Good Night, Moon, Dot in Dot and Ziggy, and Stellaluna in Stellaluna.
Pauls is a New York/Seattle-based director, producer, and educator. He graduated with his MFA in Directing from The New School in New York City. While working in New York, he has directed world premiere plays, films, operas, and musicals. Selected directing credits include King Richard III, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, I Would Consider Giving Up (world premiere), The Dark Don’t Hide It (world premiere), Jack and Jill (world premiere), Petronilla (world premiere), The Drowsy Chaperone, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Urinetown: The Musical, Gutenberg! The Musical!,and The Musical of Musicals: The Musical. Pauls is the Artistic Associate at New York Theatre Barn. New York Theatre Barn is an anti-racist non-profit theatre company that serves as a home for original culture shifting musicals during incubation.
Porcha is a recent graduate of the Professional Actor Training Program at the University of Washington. She is a native of Richmond, Texas and a graduate of Santa Fe University of Art and Design where she majored in Drama under the training of Jon Jory. Her recent Seattle credits include: Seattle Rep’s Shout Sister Shout and NINA SIMONE’s Four Women; Upstart Crow’s Richard III, The Last World Octopus Wrestling Champion, Lamplighter, 12 Ophelias, By The Way, Meet Vera Stark; Sound Theatre’s Hoodoo Love, As You Like It, The Octavia, Iphigenia and Other Daughters, Wooden O’s Love’s Labour’s Lost, and Force Continuum.
Ricardo Lastrapes is an actor, composer, choreographer, teaching artist, and a 2021-2022 Tacoma Artists Initiative Program funding recipient. He began to write music after performing in orchestra pits for multiple productions, including Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street and Parade, while attending Douglas Anderson School of the Arts. As his love for musical storytelling grew, he began to pursue theatre and dance, receiving his BFA in Acting from The University of Central Florida. He has performed in several regional productions in Washington and Florida (West Side Story, Newsies, In the Heights, RENT, Godspell). He has created a 15 Minute Story for the 5th Avenue Theatre and founded Break the Table, an online streaming channel for BIPOC creatives.
Riley (they/them) is an actor, director, playwright, and producer based in Seattle, WA. Since their move to Seattle in 2015, they have performed at Seattle Rep, Book-It Repertory Theatre, Seattle Shakespeare Company, 14/48, Freehold’s Engaged Theatre, and many others, directed at Cornish College of the Arts, Washington Ensemble Theatre, ACT Theatre’s YPP, and others, produced with The Scratch, Cornish College of the Arts, Runaway Stage Theatrics, and others. They have a Bachelors in Fine Arts in Original Works from Cornish College of the Arts.
Select musical direction credits include: Beauty and the Beast (2022), Urinetown, Mamma Mia!, Grease, Jasper in Deadland, Little Shop of Horrors, RENT, Joseph…Dreamcoat, Smokey Joe’s Cafe, Hair (The 5th Avenue Theatre); You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown (2022), She Loves Me, …Howard Barnes, In the Heights, Hairspray, Newsies, Dreamgirls, Pump Boys and Dinettes (Village Theatre); The Winter’s Tale, As You Like It, The Odyssey, Here Lies Love (Seattle Rep); Head Over Heels, Violet, American Idiot (ArtsWest); The Spitfire Grill (Showtunes!); Daddy Long Legs, Bright Star (Taproot Theatre); How Can I Love You (Ignite Creative); Spring Awakening (Balagan). Music Supervisor: Lizard Boy (Seattle Rep). A 2010 Gregory Award and 2011/2014 Gypsy Rose Lee award recipient, Tancioco is a vocal coach, arranger, and composer who enjoys educating youth and cultivating new musicals. Support live theatre!
Robin is very excited to be working with Village KIDSTAGE for this Winter Cabaret. As a KIDSTAGE kid themselves, it’s very exciting to see theatre continuing for everyone. The holidays will be very different this year but seeing and hearing joyful songs will make it feel special. They can’t wait to help these young artists show their skills in a new and unconventional way. Their previous KIDSTAGE credits include: High School Musical (2019) and Sister Act (2018).
Unapologetically bold, loud and proud, Rogelio Resendiz is a queer latinx, classically trained countertenor, hailing from Los Angeles CA and currently residing in Seattle WA, Rogelio is an innovative artist and educator who strives on breaking traditional forms of classical music/opera by defying gender and ethnic norms with a methodically inclusive sense of presentation, deep metaphor and meaning. Resendiz is an advocate for arts education and LGBTQ+ minority youth. Resendiz has chosen Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, Washington to continue his musical education/degree. Resendiz is well known in Paramount, CA for his choral and musical theatre work with middle schoolers, high schoolers and the elderly.
Sade, born and raised in Tacoma, Washington, recently graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting/Directing and minor in dance at Pacific Lutheran University. Not only has her work been showcased at PLU, but also on the stages of The 5th Avenue Theatre, Village Theatre, and many local community theaters and high schools. Her goal is to use art as an opportunity to build up the community by exchanging knowledge and experience under the lens of creativity.
Sage is a Musical Theater artist from Seattle. He studied musical theater at the University of Washington. His most recent credit was Baseball Saved Us with 5th Avenue’s Adventure Musical Theater back in early 2020 before theater got shut down for a couple years. He also is an avid songwriter. Some of his music can be found on the Sage Suzerris YouTube channel.
Shalonia is very excited to be working for Kidstage and to be back in the physical classroom with students. Having received her BFA in Theatre Performance and an M.Ed. In Curriculum and Instruction, both from the University of Idaho, Shalonia is dedicated to helping young people discover more about themselves and the world through a theatrical lens. In addition to her work at Kidstage, Shalonia is also a director for Bellevue Youth Theatre, a teaching artist for Seattle Rep, Education coordinator at the Intiman and a lifelong adventurer. Having grown up in theatre programs herself, Shalonia has seen first-hand the impact that arts can have on an individual and looks forward to sparking her students’ curiosity and creativity. When Shalonia is not teaching she enjoys reading books with her cat, Iago, kayaking, or enjoying a challenging hike.”
Shanelle starting teaching youth at the age of 21, teaching Pre-K and preschool-aged children in her hometown. After receiving her BFA in theatre, she began teaching theatre and performing arts at Seattle Infant Development Center to her Pre-K students. Shortly after, she went back to school to receive her Master’s in acting at UNC (May 2019). While at UNC, she taught acting fundamentals to high school and college students, and was so inspired she created her own curriculum, and, after completing her Master’s, launched her very own classes for inner city children and young adults in her neighborhood. Her true passion is teaching and performing.
Sheady is thrilled to be back with his second home, KIDSTAGE, after spending the past two years teaching and acting in Los Angeles! He has been working closely with KIDSTAGE for over 10 years now, first as a student and now as an instructor. As an actor, Sheady has worked with theaters all around the Seattle area such as Village Theatre, ArtsWest, and Balagan Theatre to name a few. As an Arts Educator, Sheady has worked in multiple schools, dance studios, and youth theaters across western WA and southern CA. It is his goal to make musical theatre training available to children of all ages, races, and income levels.
Sophie is a bilingual, Peruvian-American theatre artist and interrupter of the status quo working in the Seattle area. They evaluate the world and their artistic work through the lenses of the sociopolitical, the intimate, and the mysterious. They have worked professionally as an actor, director, playwright, dancer, bilingual text coach and teaching artist for companies in the Seattle area including: Seattle Shakespeare Company, Intiman Theatre, The 5th Avenue Theatre, Upstart Crow Collective, ACTLab, Burien Actor’s Theater, and Seattle Public Theatre. Franco is currently the Director of Food-Based Joy at Washington Ensemble Theatre, where they have been an ensemble member and Resident Actor since 2017.
Sophia (she/her) is thrilled to be working with the Village Theatre KIDSTAGE team this year! With 11 years of classical ballet training, she decided to transition into the world of Theatre at the age of 14. After falling in love with Theatre in high school, Sophia earned her BA in Theatre Arts from St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas in 2013. She is also a 2014 graduate of A Working Group (a Meisner-technique acting program). Sophia has taught acting and dance throughout Seattle over the past 6 years (Lakeside Middle School, Sing Out Seattle, Stone Soup Theatre, Mode Music). Sophia also offers private audition coaching preparation! When she is not teaching, Sophia works as a professional actor in Seattle. She is a co-founder and company member of the experimental theatre lab Filament: A Collab Lab. Sophia also enjoys hiking with friends, reading lots of books, watching spooky movies, and learning new subjects!
Steven is a multi-hyphenated theatre maker and composer. Favorite recent credits include: arranger/orchestrator for Howl’s Moving Castle (Book-It Repertory Theatre), associate MD for As You Like It (Seattle Rep), and additional composer/arranger/orchestrator for The Last World Octopus Wrestling Champion at ArtsWest (2019 Gregory Award co-nominee for Best New Play). He is the playwright and solo performer of The Sonata Years, which was recently workshopped at Seattle Rep. Steven also works as a sound designer, director, performer, and teaching artist. BA from Princeton University in Computer Science and Theatre. @snk_tran
UJ is a teaching and performing artist whose vision focuses on vulnerability, honesty, and sharing his experience as an American of color in this country. Growing up in Lynnwood, he became isolated as he moved to a high school in Duvall where he first began training in dance from studying YouTube videos. Recently awarded best choreography for Head Over Heels at ArtsWest and fresh from a nationwide co-production of In The Heights as Graffiti Pete, UJ has both taught and performed through venues including: Village Theatre, The 5th Avenue Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre, The Rev Theatre Company, and The Ordway Center for the Performing Arts.
For 23 years, Kati has been the driving force of what is now one of the largest and most in-depth theater arts education programs for youth in the country. Over 1 million people in King and Snohomish County have been impacted by Village Theatre’s youth education program since she took the helm. Over half are young people from 3 to 20. Today the programs serves thousands of youth each year throughout the region, with dedicated theater facilities in both Issaquah and Everett. Kati leads through her philosophy of “Skills for Theatre …Skills for Life” and her innovative leadership ensures that staff and theater artists are skilled at providing not only exceptional arts education but also 21st Century, and social emotional skills. Kati developed free outreach programs including in-school workshops, sensory friendly performances and theatre in the Wetmore Plaza in Everett. Kati has the second longest tenure on the senior staff of Village and is an active leader in equity, diversity, inclusion and anti-racism efforts for the program and organization. She served on Everett’s Cultural Commission for six years, and in 2014 received the Everett Mayors Arts Award for her achievements and contributions to theater education.
Suzie enthusiastically joined Village Theatre in 2003, days after leaving high tech corporate life to follow her lifetime passion of working in a theatre. She has directed The Little Mermaid, Aida, The Little Mermaid Jr., Seussical Jr., 13, High School Musical, The Secret Garden, Les Misérables, and the 2005 Last Exit for KIDSTAGE. In her seventeen-year tenure at KIDSTAGE she has produced over eighty shows for KIDSTAGE including several original musicals. Suzie has been a driving force behind the KIDSTAGE Originals Program and is passionate about youth voice and encouraging future writers, composers, directors, and designers. She spearheaded the youth program quality initiative over the past seven years leading the efforts in incorporating Social Emotional Learning skills into the KIDSTAGE curriculum. She is passionate about developing future leaders both on stage and off and has been an active partner in equity, diversity, and inclusion efforts for the program. Suzie has a B.A. in theatre arts from Western Washington University with concentrations in both directing and acting. Her directing credits include Crimes of the Heart, Steel Magnolias, A Shayna Maidel, Royal Gambit, and The Firebugs. She has performed at Intiman, Seattle Children’s Theatre, the late Pioneer Square Theatre, and was in the 1985 Village Theatre KIDSTAGE production of Bye, Bye, Birdie.
Aaron was a KIDSTAGE kid before joining the Village Theatre family, working at theatres including: The 5thAvenue Theatre, The Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, The Kennedy Center, and his alma mater of Western Washington University, where he holds a BA in theatre arts with an emphasis in stage management and technical theatre. Some favorite productions at KIDSTAGE include: A Christmas Story, In the Heights, School of Rock, Les Misérables, The Lion King Jr., and Hairspray. Aaron thanks his family, friends, and mentors as he valiantly attempts to put his theatre degree to use. Member of Village Theatre’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Anti-Racism Committee, the City of Everett’s Cultural Arts Commission, the Mukilteo Schools Foundation Board of Directors, and the United States Institute of Theatre Technology. His motto: “MacGyver it!”
Aaron is an educator, artist, and activist originally from Compton California. Aaron’s formal training includes studying at Biola Conservatory of Music, studying with opera singers while living in Heidelberg German, and Cornish College of the Arts. With a background in vocal performance, vocal health/technique, Aaron has performed in many musical arenas and has worked with incredible musicians across Europe, Canada, and the United States. From opera, to musical theatre, to gospel Aaron appreciates any chance they gets to work with other artist. As an activist Aaron continues to fight for equitable theatre education programs for youth and for diverse representation on stage and on productions teams. Aaron can currently be found as the Institute Manager at Village Theatre KidStage Everett, teaching voice Cornish College of The Arts and as the Co-Education Manager for Re:Theatre.
Angela has been with Village Theatre since 2008. She holds a BA in English from Seattle Pacific University and provides administrative and customer service support for all KIDSTAGE programming. She loves the energy, creativity and spirit of collaboration among students and staff at KIDSTAGE!
Ayana is proud to be part of the KIDSTAGE family. A graduate of Everett HS, Ayana attended Western Washington University where she earned a BA in Theatre Arts. Since joining the KIDSTAGE Team in 2012, she’s worn many hats, working with Institute/Pathway, classes, camps, and productions. Ayana has also had the honor of stage managing many KIDSTAGE shows. Favorites include: The Addams Family, Hairspray, The Lion King Jr., Les Misérables School Edition, and In the Heights. Ayana also works with the Evergreen MS Drama Club. She is living the dream every day here at KIDSTAGE!
Janet has been with KIDSTAGE since 2006. She developed her own, “Skills for Theatre… Skills for Life” through acting, directing, forming a theatre company, serving on boards for arts organizations, and time in corporate America working with freelance artists, graphic designers, and game designers. Janet has served KIDSTAGE in a variety of roles and at different points has managed classes, camps, productions, and Institute/Pathway. KIDSTAGE allows Janet to pursue her lifelong passion for arts integration as she develops the emerging STEM and school outreach programs. Personal motto: Duck for Luck.
Blaire is a Washington based theatre artist and drama educator, who is excited to return to Village Theatre KIDSTAGE as the education programs coordinator! Although she calls Seattle home, she has shared her love of theatre on stages all over the world. She enjoys all aspects of theatre and theatre education. Starting her theatrical journey at a young age, She has acted, directed, stage managed and designed on stages both large and small. Her most recent credits include works with Ancient Lake Theatre Festival, Plank Island Theatre, and Missoula Children’s Theatre, where she acted and directed in 49 states and 12 different countries. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Theatre Arts from Western Washington University. Her advocacy for the arts and arts education has inspired her to become the Founder of Beyond the Stage Youth, a youth empowerment program that teaches life and social emotional learning skills, through theatre arts to support arts educational opportunities in underserved communities. She believes theatre and creative storytelling have the power to unite and empower all people and is humbled and honored to bring theatre anywhere she goes.
Jay is an Afro Puerto Rican artist-activist transplanted in Seattle from New York. She currently serves as the Associate Artistic Director of Sound Theatre (four-time Theatre of the Year Gregory Award winner). As a response to the 2020 pandemic and racial uprising, Jay founded a Puget Sound Theatre Leadership Board for which she serves as chair and lead facilitator. Anti-Racism, belonging, and community building are foundational to everything she does. Jay has been a lead teaching artist, artist in residence, curriculum developer, trainer, or master coach for Seattle Repertory Theatre, Seattle Public Theatre, Intiman Theatre, ArtsWest, Village Theatre, and ACT Theatre, as well as a guest lecturer at Duke and Carnegie Mellon. Directing credits include: World Premiere of REPARATIONS by Darren Canady (Sound Theatre), CITIZEN: an American Lyric (Sound Theatre), U.S. Premiere of B (Washington Ensemble Theatre), World Premiere of Anansi & the Halfling (Annex Theater), Skeleton Crew (ArtsWest), and Welcome to Arroyo’s (Theater Schmeater). Jay holds a BA in Theatre from SUNY Brockport, studied film in Thailand at Mahidol University, and recently earned an MFA in Directing at Edinburgh Napier University.
Joel started his tenure with KIDSTAGE as a student and is proud to be a member of the KIDSTAGE staff. It is an incredible opportunity to give back to the program that inspired his so much in his youth, and hopefully encourage students in all aspects of theatre. This is his sixth year with KIDSTAGE. He graduated from Western Washington University with a B.A. in Theatrical Management and Design.
Maurianna has 12 years of teaching and facilitation experience and is deeply committed to racial equity in the nonprofit sector. With the mission to create inclusive environments and brave spaces, she has worked with over 15,000 students in the creative arts. With her theatre journey starting at KIDSTAGE many moons ago, Maurianna often says, “Once a KIDSTAGE Kid, always a KIDSTAGE Kid.” Her passion for storytelling shows up in many ways, including through film; she has worked on documentary projects in Europe, Africa, and North America. Maurianna holds a BA in Peace & Reconciliation Studies from Chapman University. In her spare time, she volunteers at Young Women Empowered as a mentor and participates in several anti-racism learning/activism groups.
Nicole is an actor, singer, dancer, choreographer, teacher, wife to Josh and mother to Max and Huxley. Nicole has lived and worked on both coasts, loves to paint, garden, and do construction projects at home! As an actor, Nicole has been seen at Village Theatre in Cabaret (Gregory Award Nominee), Mary Poppins, Annie, Bye Bye Birdie, How to Succeed, Once Upon A Time in New Jersey and many Village Originals, The Constant Wife (Seattle Rep), Cabaret (5th Ave, AMTSJ, Ordway Center), Wonderful Town (5th Ave), Ming the Rude (Empty Space), Elephant and Piggie, Fire Station 7, Sleeping Beauty (SCT), Tapestry (Oregon Cabaret Theatre), and many more. As a choreographer Nicole’s work has been seen at KIDSTAGE, Cornish, Oregon Cabaret Theatre, The Triple Door, Café Nordo, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Fantastic Z, and Art Institute of Seattle, and in NYC, at the HERE Center, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Sam French Festival, Clubbed Thumb, Astoria Performing Arts, The Management and Acting Manitou. Nicole has taught at Cornish College of the Arts, UW, Art Institute of Seattle, Hunter College High School, VAM Studios, 5th Avenue, Century Ballroom, McCarter Theatre Company, Jersey City Dance Academy, The Studios, and All That Dance. Nicole holds a BFA from Cornish College of the Arts, is a Simonson Technique certified teacher and is a member of Actors’ Equity. www.nicolebeerman.com
Bailey Sipila (she/her) grew up in Maple Valley and always loved and admired the Village Theatre. Bailey graduated from Linfield University with her BA in Theatre Arts in 2018 and joined the Village Theatre team by taking an Internship the summer before graduating. Ever since then, Bailey has been an instructor, Education Assistant, Site Coordinator, and had other various roles while working with Kidstage. Bailey believes that when young people engage with art they grow to be more empathetic, kind people who help create a more open-minded world.
Skills for Theatre… Skills for Life
To provide a personal development program for young people which uses theatre arts:
- To teach creativity and responsibility
- To encourage teamwork and personal integrity
- To foster self-esteem and appreciation for live theatre
Everyone benefits from an inclusive, multi-cultural environment of students, staff and programming. We welcome people of every ethnicity, race, faith, sexual orientation, gender identity, income and ability.