Meet our Adjunct Faculty!
MEG AFFONSO (Acting Out! at Proctors) is an actor, writer, producer and director; she is a gifted storyteller who has the performing arts ingrained in her soul. From the age of 4, Meg was singing in her church on a regular basis. By the age of 5, Meg began dance lessons and in high school she discovered acting. Meg studied with the Deena Levy Theatre Studio in NYC and has performed in a variety of theatrical productions, ranging from musical theatre to dramatic plays. In recent years, Meg has been performing in film, web series productions, commercials & television. She is currently producing and directing a production of for colored girls who have considered suicide when the rainbow is enuf, directing a documentary film and writing two short films. Meg has experience teaching improv, yoga and acting classes for kids; she was a teaching artist for the School of the Performing Arts at Proctors’ Acting Academy production of Once on This Island, Jr. Meg’s mission is to tell stories that matter & to help others by enriching their lives with art.
OMONIKE AKINYEMI (Dance Lab/Acting for the Camera) is a passionate performer, filmmaker and choreographer. She has danced, acted and made films in numerous arenas– as a company member of the Ballet Hispanico of New York Apprentice Dance Company and Alaafia Dance of Yale University, as a director with Image Quilt Productions, and as a performer with the Glimmer Globe Theatre. Trained in Dunham Technique, Flamenco, Ballet, Modern (Graham and Horton), and African dance, Omonike’s choreography merges diverse cultural forms with style. Omonike has performed at RPI events, as Othello in this year’s Glimmer Globe production of Othello, as Hawa in The Glove Theater’s In Dafur, Grandmother in Sadako and the 1000 Cranes, and in the role of Tituba in The Crucible. Omonike has written and directed numerous award-winning films and theatrical productions including the stage play, How to Stay Sane in Paris (2007), the Cannes Forum screened film, Nelly’s Bodega (2000), is now writing a historical feature, Emancipado (2018). From 2014-16, Omonike managed the productions of the Montclair State University’s Dance for Film program. A two-time Fellow of the New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), Omonike was honored in 2004 with a Fellowship for Screenwriting and again in 2007 with a Fellowship in Filmmaking. While based in France from 1999-2003, Omonike wrote her first episodes of the episodic narrative film series, Omo Shango: People Under the Influence of the God of Thunder and was honored in Paris with the Cinema Images D’Ailleurs “Prix Jeune Cineaste”. Omonike looks forward to continuing to perform, write, and create films and choreography that incorporate diverse cultures.
LILY BALSEN (Guest Artist – Summer Stage Young Acting Company) is an actress based in NYC. NYC and recent theater credits: Paradise (Luna Stage and Passage Theatre) The Good Muslim and Kandahar to Canada (Ensemble Studio Theatre), Pentecost and Therese Raquin (Atlantic Stage 2/PTP), and Comedy of Sorrows (HERE Arts). Regional credits include plays at Barrington Stage, Theatre J, Alliance Theatre, and Olney Theatre Center and the San Francisco Shakespeare Festival. She spent 2 years performing in a solo stage adaptation of the novel The Secret Life of Bees staged by master director, Wynn Handman. Lily also records children’s audio book narration, writes/performs original sketch comedy, and teaches yoga and movement to expectant mothers. She graduated from Middlebury College and grew up in Chatham, NY. She is delighted to perform these lovely new plays with such talented young playwrights and actors!
RENEÉ BELL (Costume Design) just finished designing The Music Man, Baskerville, and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee at Weathervane Playhouse. She recently designed costumes for The Rocky Horror Show, The Glass Menagerie and Real Girls Can’t Win! as well as several other productions for Marietta College. She designed her first feature film called Splatter: Love, Honor, and Paintball. Reneé has designed shows for Manhattan Theatre Source, Riverside Theatre, Barrington Stage Company and Shakespeare by the River. She has worked as a milliner on such Broadway shows as Mary Poppins, The Color Purple, The Lion King and The Pajama Game. She is a freelance costumer with Celebrity Cruise lines. She is a Member of U.S.I.T.T. Reneé holds a bachelors in Design and Technical Production from Western Michigan University and an Masters in Fine Arts in Design from the University of Iowa. www.reneembell.com
ENRIQUE BROWN (Broadway Camp Jr./Broadway Dance) is a theatrical performer, director, choreographer and producer. He travels the country teaching ballet, jazz, and theatre dance. He began his training in Dallas, studying with numerous instructors, and schools, including the Houston Ballet Academy and Virginia School of the Arts. Brown proceeded to spend four seasons with Ballet Oklahoma as a principal/soloist dancer. Brown has performed in Broadway, national touring, regional and stock productions. Broadway credits include The Little Mermaid, Fiddler on the Roof, The Music Man (Tommy Djilas), and Oklahoma! He can be seen in the film Across the Universe. Most recently, Brown choreographed In the Heights for NYU/Tisch’s musical theatre program as well as a new musical Temple of the Souls, at NYMF 2017 (receiving an Outstanding Choreography nomination).
MARIA RICCIO BRYCE (Musical Theatre) began her career as an actress in London, where she was Artistic Director of The Overground Theatre, one of the leading fringe theatres of the 70’s. Upon returning to the USA, and specifically to her native roots here in Upstate NY, she began her career as a playwright/ composer/lyricist. Her first musical, Mother, I’m Here, premiered at Proctors and was subsequently produced at The Egg. Hearts Of Fire, her musical about the Schenectady Massacre, was produced twice at Proctors. Her choral work, The Amsterdam Oratorio, is a cycle of songs about her hometown of Amsterdam. At its opening night performance, attended by close to 1,000 people, she was presented with the “Key to the City” by the Mayor. Last November, she produced her latest work, Swan Song, a musical revue about her life. She is the Music Director of St. Luke’s Church in Schenectady, and was a former Artist in Residence at the Sayles School of Fine Arts Blue Roses Theatre Company.
JACQUELINE DONNARUMA (Acting) has several years of experience teaching and directing students of all ages throughout New York City and the Capital Region. She is most passionate about making Shakespeare more accessible to grade school students and has created abridged versions of his plays for student study and performance. Jacqueline serves as the director of the theatre arts school at Steamer 10 Theatre. As a teaching artist for Stages on the Sound, she specializes in teaching Film Production, Playwriting, and Shakespeare to grades 4th, 6th, and 8th respectively. She has also served as an adjunct professor at The College of Saint Rose where she taught acting and improvisation to students with special needs. In addition, she has performed with various theatre companies in NYC and Upstate New York. Jacqueline holds a BA in Theatre and Dramatic Literature from Wheaton College and an MA in Educational Theatre from New York University.
JENN DUGAN (Creating Effects/Advanced Make-Up) is a makeup artist and owner of The Makeup Curio. The Makeup Curio blends the beautiful and the unusual in the art of make-up. A boutique style business, fused with a makeup only salon, The Makeup Curio offers a unique blend of beauty, bridal, theater, and special fx for sale, through workshops and with makeup services. Jenn has a bachelor’s degree from Marist College, an associate’s degree in Business Administration from SCCC and a recent graduate of the Aesthetic Science Institute.
BILL GELTZEILER (Acting Out! At theREP/Non-Musical Acting) grew up in Westfield, NJ and is a lifelong lover, participant and advocate of theatre performance. He graduated from University of Maryland in 2012 with degrees in theatre arts and communication, and received his teachers’ certification for theatre and public speaking from Kean University in 2016. He has performed in over 40 plays and musicals and has a special place in his heart for improvisation and general tomfoolery. He dabbles in guitar and piano, and utilizes his exuberant energy to truly bring out the performer in everyone! Bill is also a apart of our Winter Acting Faculty.
MARIA GERMAIN (Broadway Camp Music Director) is delighted to be music directing her first production with the School of Performing Arts at Proctors. Recent credits include And the World Goes Round with Not So Common Players, Dogfight with Troy Civic Theater, and Legally Blonde at Schenectady Light Opera Company. Maria holds a bachelors in Music Education from Nazareth College of Rochester. She serves as Instrumental Accompanist and Adjunct Faculty at Schenectady County Community College as well as District Wide Accompanist and Music Librarian for the Niskayuna School District. Maria is also a part of our Winter faculty.
STEPHANIE GRAY (Broadway Camp Jr./Acting Intensive) is currently cast as Frau Schmidt on The Sound of Music national tour. From 2015-2016, she played Mrs. Potts in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, and has also toured with ArtsPower Co. Regional credits include Beauty and the Beast (Wardrobe) at Arrow Rock Lyceum Theatre. She was formally an Emerging Artist at the Seagle Music Colony in Schroon Lake, New York. She received her B.A. in music from Boston University in 2013 and graduated from Shenendehowa High School in 2009.
STEPHEN HONICKI (Stop Animation/Filmmaking Academy) received his bachelors in Fine Art from State University of New York at Albany and his masters in Art Education from the College of Saint Rose. He currently teaches the introductory level as well as the advanced level course in Studio in Video and Photography at Niskayuna High School. During his tenure, Mr. Honicki’s students have received accolades and awards for their work in numerous art exhibitions and film festivals at the regional, national, and international level, including DROP TV, Rod Serling Video Festival, CineYouth, Ballston Spa Film Festival, and the Westport Youth Festival, just to name a few. In addition, Mr. Honicki has been working with various professional and state organizations on evaluating and developing standards for the Media Arts as part of the National Core Arts Standards.
LATISIA ‘DANSEUSE’ JOHNSON (Hip Hop Dance) started her dancing journey at the age of 10 in the style of hip-hop dance. She ventured to bigger performances in the Capital District area with a group called, Too Deep Entertainment. Danseuse attended Russell Sage College graduating with a bachelors in Dance Performance and Therapy. Not long after graduating, Latisia was introduced to Garth Fagan’s summer intensive dance program which is where a new beginning arose for her. She was offered a job in the Garth Fagan (Afro-Caribbean modern dance) dance company as a professional dancer and demonstrator in 2014 for the company, beginner and intermediate public classes. She learned most of her discipline as a dancer there and hopes to share her experiences with others (one day with her own studio). Latisia currently teaches Hip-Hop Fitness, Zumba Fitness and offers private stretching and choreography classes. Latisia loves making dance fun and making it something EVERYONE can feel comfortable participating in, experience or not. Latisia welcomes you to join HER experience!
TARA JUDD (Dance Lab) trained at The Hartt School Conservatory under the direction of Peggy Lyman. She then moved to NYC and was accepted into the BFA dance program at Marymount Manhattan College under the direction of Katie Langan. While Tara was at Marymount Manhattan she worked in the student recruitment department for the BA and BFA dance program. Tara was one of the directors of a national award-winning team at The Kennedy Performing Arts Centre. In her 8 years as a director, she was recognized both regionally and nationally for her choreography. She has taught and choreographed for numerous schools across the country and most recently Tara’s choreography can be seen featured on “Teen Choice Dancer” and “Dance Moms” Star, Chloe Lukasiak’s YouTube and social media outlets with her solo “Thick Skin”. Tara created Kennedy Talent Management in 2012. As a manager she has successfully placed numerous kids in top agencies in NYC and LA. KTM kids have been seen in feature films, TV, commercials, and Broadway. Tara and her sister created the successful workshop company Triple Threat Talent Tour which travels the country “Bridging the gap” for todays talented youth. Through this company Tara and her participants have worked with top “So You Think You Can Dance” Choreographers and dancers, Broadway, Film, and TV stars and top NYC and LA casting directors and agents. Tara continues through her ventures to spread her passion for the arts to today’s budding talent!
ASHLEY ELIZABETH LEE holds a Bachelor of the Arts in Theatre from Belhaven University. She has over twenty years experience in the performing arts, including classical ballet, musical theatre, physical theatre, and more. She has taught ballet, other dance and movement classes, and various acting and immersion classes in Kentucky, Mississippi, and upstate New York. She loves sharing her passions of dance and performing with students, while also challenging them and watching them grow as performers. She is very excited to join the Proctors team for teaching artists. A few of her favorite roles have been Eponine in Les Miserables, Missy in The Marvelous Wonderettes, a featured dancer in Oklahoma!, and a lead guest artist with Northeast Ballet Company’s The Nutcracker.
AARON MARQUISE (Theatrical Clowning) was born and raised in Round Lake, New York. He grew up performing at the former New York State Theatre Institute in Troy, NY, where he also spent his senior year of high school as an intern. Continuing a career in theater, Aaron went on to study Musical Theatre with a minor in Playwriting at Marymount Manhattan College in NYC. After discovering the circus world, Aaron auditioned at the prestigious National Circus School in Montréal, Canada where he graduated in 2015. Since joining the circus world Aaron has had the opportunity to perform in Quebec, France, Switzerland, and Germany. He is the founder and Executive Artistic Director of Marquise Productions. Aaron served as the Assistant Director/Circus Consultant for the School of the Performing Arts at Proctors production of Pippin. He is currently the Arts Education Manager at the School of the Performing Arts at Proctors and theREP.
GREGORY THEODORE MARSH (Dance) is a local choreographer and dance instructor. He is the resident choreographer and dance instructor at Albany High School. He has also taught the dance workshops for the Proctors High School Musical Theater Festival since 2015. Previous credits include: High School Musical Theatre Awards 2017 (Proctors), Aida, The Rocky Horror Show (SLOC), My Fair Lady (Capital Repertory Theatre), Once on This Island, Smokey Joe’s Café, West Side Story, Cabaret, Chicago (Albany High School), High School Musical, The Wiz, Seussical, Jr., Annie, Jr. (Park Playhouse, PP II, PP, Kidz), Ain’t Misbehavin’ (Albany Civic Theatre), Sweet Charity (Oscar Lindquist, SLOC), Parade (Newt Lee, Spotlight Players), West Side Story (Chino, PP), Grease (Johnny Casino, PP). Awards: 3 SLOC High School Musical Theater Awards for Outstanding Choreography for Oliver! (AHS, 2007), Pippin (AHS), Oliver! (AHS, 2017), 4 TANYS Awards for Excellence in Choreography for Hairspray (SLOC), Outstanding Choreography for Spring Awakening (Our Own Productions), Excellence in Choreography for Legally Blonde (SLOC), Outstanding Choreography for Cabaret (SLOC). Gregory has a Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in English and Sociology from the University at Albany. All the love to JPD and T-W!
KD McTEIGUE (Summer Stage Stage Manager/Teaching Assistant) is an actress from upstate New York. She has appeared in numerous productions at the Theatre Institute at Sage including; A Christmas Carol; Cabaret; Romeo & Juliet; Backbeard: The Musical, as well as several area staged readings (Berkshire Playwrights Lab; Troy Foundry Theatre). She was the stage manager for Troy Foundry Theatre’s inaugural production, New World Order: 6 Short Plays by Harold Pinter. Other credits include WAM Theatre’s 24 Hour Theatre Festival and Fresh Takes Series. As a teaching assistant at the Perry-Mansfield Performing Arts School she worked on acting, Shakespeare, and voice and text with performers ages 8-18. Next year, KD will join the Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble as a Guest Actor in their Theatre in the Classroom touring production. In May, she graduated from Russell Sage College with a degree in Theatre and English. www.kdmcteigue.com
AARON MOORE (Acting) comes from Albany NY and has always had a heart for the stage. Having trained under Ward Dales and Gregory Marsh at Albany high school’s Drama program. Aaron then took his talents to SUNY Potsdam and there he earned a degree in Theatre with a concentration in African American theatre. Aaron has performed and worked with local programs such as Capital Repertory Theatre, Pendragon Theatre Company, Albany High School, Youth FX, The African American Cultural Center and many more.
JORDAN OCZKOWSKI (Assistant Music Director Broadway Camp) is excited to be back working at the School of the Performing Arts Broadway Camp. He is a recent Saint Rose graduate and will be attending Ithaca College to pursue his masters in music performance.
TONY PALLONE (Acting) has been acting and directing on regional stages and in films for a number of years, and is a proud member of Actors’ Equity. He has previously worked as an acting teacher with the New York State Theatre Institute and Drama Kids International. Tony is a huge fan of Shakespeare, laughter, and theatre that challenges audiences to think about their world.
FREDDY RAMIREZ (Broadway Camp Choreographer) is happy to return to Proctors to work with this great group of young and talented artists after previously choreographing All Shook Up and Pippin for the Broadway Camp at the School of the Performing Arts at Proctors. In the musical theatre and dance worlds, he has performed on Broadway, all over the U.S. and internationally. His transition to choreographer has been one of great pleasure. His most recent choreography works include Ring of Fire, She Loves Me, Mamma Mia, A Christmas Story, Gypsy and The Secret Garden at Capital Repertory Theatre. He helped create and choreograph the original and premiere productions of the Naked Influence and Some People Hear Thunder and has also created works for national and international dance companies. Other directing and choreography credits include Guys and Dolls, Fiddler on the Roof, Damn Yankees, Carousel, Bye Bye Birdie, Little Shop of Horrors and Nunsense for numerous regional and repertory theatres.
JOSHUA REDFIELD (Guest Artist – Summer Stage Young Acting Company) is very proud to be working with theREP again, making his debut with the On-the-Go! production ofAlice in Wonderland directed by Margaret E. Hall. Recent credits include Peter Pan with Herrick Entertainment, PJ Masks: Time to Be a Hero LIVE! with Round Room/Entertainment One, and Clifford the Big Red Dog with Mills Entertainment. He also studied at the New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts. Loving thanks goes to his parents for their unwavering support and encouragement.
DOUGLAS SELDIN (Fight Director) is thrilled to be at Proctors. Doug has served as fight director and teacher for Shakespeare & Company, Williams College, School of the Performing Arts at Proctors, Saratoga Shakespeare Company, Capital Repertory Theatre, Adirondack Theatre Festival, WAM Theatre, Bard College at Simon’s Rock, Pittsfield Shakespeare in The Park, Worcester Shakespeare Company, Seattle Shakespeare Company, Seattle Rep, Barrington Stage Company, Las Vegas Stunt Team, New England Youth Theatre, Boston College, University of Washington, HomeMade Theatre Company, Northeastern Educational Theatre Conference, Caffè Lena, and currently serves on the faculties of Skidmore College and The Hartt School at the University of Hartford. Doug is a Certified Advanced Actor-Combatant through Dueling Arts International & The Society of American Fight Directors. Training: Bachelors in Theatre from Skidmore College and is a founding member of The Conservatory at Shakespeare & Company.
SHELBY SOMELOFSKE (Dance Lab) began dancing at the age of 3. She has experience in all styles of dance but possesses a strong love for the style of tap. While earning her bachelor’s degree in Theatre Arts from Suffolk University, she continued to pursue her love for dance by dancing with the Suffolk University Dance Company. Her strong passion for arts education drew her to Intern with Boston Ballet’s Education and Community Initiatives Department. This experience deepened her interest in the importance of making artistic opportunities available for students of all ages. After her undergraduate studies, she moved back to the Capital Region and began working in dance and education. She teaches various styles of dance, including tap and Musical Theatre at Dance Me School of Dance and Character Development in Schenectady. Her teaching style is disciplined and fun, to ensure that students develop a skill set in which they are mindful and collaborative members of today’s world. Shelby also studies Yin Yoga with Josh Summers and incorporates the mental and physical benefits of the practice into her dance classes. She is passionate about the benefits of a yoga practice in dance classes, as she has found for herself, that yoga offers students the opportunity to observe, feel and connect to the present moment. This is an essential skill for all student performers to possess. Shelby is very passionate about mental and physical wellness and continues ongoing studies in that field. She is currently pursuing her master’s degree in Special Education and Literacy at the University at Albany.
PRINCE SPRAUVE (Reel Adventures) is an independent film director who founded the nonprofit organization known as Told By Us (TBU) Productions. He has been running the program out of Schenectady High School since 2007 and has rallied the support of professionals within the community to work towards the growth and sustainability of the organization.
ELY THOREL (Dance) has been dancing all his life but decided to pursue dance as a career at the young age of 15. During his high school years, Ely has danced and choreographed many different projects and productions. During his adult years, Ely has trained at numerous dance studios in New York City, Saratoga, and Boston to name a few cities. Dancing alongside local upcoming artist and entertainers has made Ely well known amongst the capital region for his dancing and choreography. Teaching all ages ranging 4 years of age to adult, Ely’s passion for dance shines in his students. Ely has found a way to use his body as an artistic instrument and then teach that to today’s youth in hopes to express themselves, in a positive light. Ely is very excited to join the Proctors team as the new Dance Teaching Artist!
BETH TSAI (Film/Media) is a film scholar and practitioner. Her experimental films have screened internationally and at various venues in New York. Her publications have appeared in the International Journal of Asia Pacific Studies, Quarterly Review of Film and Video, and Journal of Asian Cinema. She received her Ph.D. in Cultural Studies from Stony Brook University in 2017. She is currently working on a documentary about Chinese migrant workers in the Capital Region of New York.
MATTHEW WINNING (Summer Stage Director) is a local director, actor, and educator. At theREP he co-directed They Built America for the On-The-Go! In-School touring program, directed the New Voices portion of the 2017 Next Act series, and served as Assistant Director for theREP’s 2016 production of Camelot. You may have seen him on stage at theREP in Smokin Production’s world premiere of Some People Hear Thunder. Matthew currently serves as Part-Time Faculty at the Syracuse University School of Drama and has taught at SUNY Oneonta, and Sterling College in Sterling KS. Notable directing credits include As You Like It, Two Gentleman of Verona (UnCovered Theatre), Glass Menagerie, Jane Eyre, South Pacific, Medea (Sterling College). Notable Acting Credits include 1776 (Thomas Jefferson, Theatrix Productions), West Side Story (Riff, Park Playhouse), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Puck, NC Stage CO). MFA Acting, Regent University 2010.
STEVEN YUHASZ (Broadway Camp Director) is the Youth Programs Director for the School of the Performing Arts at Proctors where he oversees Broadway Camp and the High School Musical Theatre Awards among other programs. Having worked extensively in professional theatre as a director including Off Broadway: Flamingo Court with Jamie Farr and Anita Gillette, The Preacher And The Shrink with Dee Hoty and Tom Galantich. The Lincoln Continental, Midtown International Theatre Festival (Nominated “Best Production of a Play.”) Late Nights With The Boys: confessions of a leather bar chanteuse, Zorba with Jeff McCarthy, Aaron Ramey, Beth Fowler & Emily Skinner – York Theatre. Tusk “Best of NYMF”. Regional Theatre: Hairspray at the Gateway Playhouse, The King & I with Lorenzo Lamas at Ogunquit Playhouse. Lover, Liar, Lady: The Woman of Kander & Eb (conceived), Lady Day At The Emerson’s Bar And Grill, Streakin’, Forever Plaid – New Provincetown Players where he served as Artistic Consultant. Associate Director All About Us – Westport Country Playhouse with Eartha Kitt, Cady Huffman & Shuler Hensley. Cinderella – Ogunquit Playhouse and Papermill Playhouse with Leslie Uggums. Three seasons of A Christmas Carol starring Jim Dale, F. Murray Abraham & Tim Curry at the Madison Square Garden Theatre assisting Susan Stroman. Other productions include work at The Goodspeed Opera, Casa Manana, Flatrock Playhouse, Ryman Auditorium and Cape Cod Theatre Project. Producer: Off Broadway Streakin! & Pterodactyl Island. Producer for The Actors’ Fund of America Broadway Concerts and World Aids Day Concert of Pippin. Steven appeared on Broadway as an actor in the revivals of Peter Pan with Sandy Duncan, George Rose and Christopher Hewitt and Zorba with Anthony Quinn and Lilia Kedrova. Steven was also the Executive Director for Shakespeare on the Sound in CT and Associate General Manager at Papermill Playhouse.
JILLIAN ZYGO (Improv) is a SUNY Geneseo graduate with a bachelors in Theatre and a minor in Musical Theatre. She has been a professional performer since she was sixteen years old and has toured to 49 of 50 states singing and acting. While living in NYC, she was a founding member of the Child Guardian Union on Broadway (Once, Annie, Les Mis). She then returned home to Saratoga County where she has continued teaching and nurturing the love of theatre in the Capital District. Tour credits: The Wedding Singer (Julia Gulia), Oklahoma! 1st National (Ado Annie), I Love A Piano (Ginger), Beehive the 60’s Musical (Janis Ian). Other credits: Annie Get Your Gun (Annie Oakley), Funny Girl AriZoni Award Best Actress (Fanny Brice), Violet (Violet), The Last Five Years (Cathy). Jillian is a member of AEA and IATSE Local 764. She is also apart of our Acting and Musical Theatre Winter faculty. www.thezygos.com