Abby Eagleson, since 2000 (Studio alum)
Abby Duke Eagleson is a born and raised Studio East girl. Abby returned to the Seattle area from New York where she toured with Nickelodeon’s tour of Go, Diego, Go Live!, and performed in various NYMF shows and workshops. In the incredible theatre scene of the greater Seattle area, she has been seen performing at Village Theatre, 5th Ave, ACT, StoryBook Theater, and Contemporary Classics. She has directed and music directed for Studio East and At the Ridge Theatre. Abby also teaches from her private studio Voice and Piano lessons as well as Audition coaching. She received her BFA in Musical Theatre with an emphasis in Directing from The Boston Conservatory and attended Circle In the Square’s summer intensive. In addition to performing and teaching, Abby has recently pursued her Masters degree in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Washington, where she has been specializing in adult and pediatric Voice rehabilitation.
Aimee Hong, since 2014
Aimee is thrilled to be teaching with Studio East! Previous teaching artist experiences have been through the Seattle Opera, Seattle Symphony, and Village Kidstage. Aimee is an Adjunct Music Professor at Bellevue College, working with both the Vocal and Musical Theatre departments. She has Music Directed at Renton Civic Theatre, SecondStory Rep, and Bainbridge Performing Arts, to name a few.
At Studio East she has enjoyed strengthening singing voices and bringing out characters through song and dance. Aimee loves Studio East’s positive environment and continuous support to both students and staff!
Allan Batchelder, since 1995
Allan Batchelder has been with the Studio since its second year, which makes him feel really, really old. It’s funny that while he looks every day of those many years, Lani hasn’t aged a minute. Well, life isn’t fair. Allan has worked with students from pre-K through retirement, teaching classes ranging from Play Analysis to Stage Combat, and from Mask to Shakespeare. He has also directed over sixty plays in various schools around the Seattle area (and two or three here at Studio East). Allan is a former member of Actors’ Equity Association, a former stand-up comedian, and former owner of a lustrous head of hair. He has two Master’s degrees, two dogs, a cat, an impossibly patient wife, an alarmingly normal son, and a bum knee. As Steven Wright once said, “you can’t have everything…where would you put it?”
Amber Wolfe, since 2015
Amber Wolfe is a performer and teacher based in Seattle. She teaches acting, creative movement, improvisation and stage combat. What motivates Amber is helping kids explore new ideas and discover skills and talents they didn’t know they had. Teaching credits include: The Northwest School, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Book-It Repertory Theatre, Centrum, Seattle Public Theater, Youth Theatre Northwest and Rainier Valley Youth Theatre. Performance credits include: Seattle Public Theater, Wooden O, Seattle Shakespeare, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Folklife Festival and Columbia City Theatre.
April Phillips, since 2001
April is a Jack of All Trades when it comes to Theater. Her experience includes Production Manager / Coordinator / Producer (Andy Williams Theatre, Studio East and Issaquah Dance Theatre), Stage Manager (Andy Williams Theatre, KPC, Issaquah Dance Theatre, Village Theatre, StoryBook Theater and Studio East Teen shows), House Manager (Studio East), Lighting Designer (KPC, Studio East, Blue Dog Dance and Issaquah Dance Theatre), and Props Mistress (Studio East). Introducing students to the world of technical theater is one of April’s passions.
Brad Walker, since 2018
Brad Walker is an actor, director, event entertainer, and teaching artist. Seattle born and raised, he is an alumnus of the University of Washington, where he studied Theatre and Communications. Brad has directed shows with Seattle Theatre Group, Second Story Rep, SIS Productions, Burien Actors Theater, and school plays at Sacajawea Elementary, Bryant Elementary, McDonald International, and John Stanford International. While Brad loves to direct, he works predominantly in theatre as an actor; he has performed with Book-It Rep, Taproot Theatre Company, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Harlequin Productions, and most notably: StoryBook Theater!
Buddy Todd, since 2014
Buddy has been acting and directing for over twenty years. Some of his directing favorites have included Fiddler on the Roof, A Child’s Christmas in Wales, The Fantastiks, and The Game’s Afoot. As a performer, Buddy has enjoyed such roles as “Charlie Brown” in You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown, “The Fairy Godmother” in Cinderella, “Simon” in Hayfever, “Jack” in Into the Woods, and “Sylvia St. Croix” in Ruthless! The Musical. In addition to working at Studio East, Buddy teaches with Stone Soup Theatre and Edmonds Community College.
Candace Marie Dahne, since 2014
Candace has been onstage, backstage, and all around the stage her entire life. The daughter of a dancer and a musician, she began dancing at the age of 3 and eventually found her way to theatre and music at age 10. In 2011, she received a Master of Fine Arts degree in Acting from Florida Atlantic University and quickly discovered teaching theatre to be her true calling. Her passion for teaching stems from watching the “light bulb moment” – the moment a student realizes they can achieve a thing that once seemed too difficult. Candace is also a trained stage combatant with over 10 years of training in 9 weapon styles.
Candace has worked extensively with students of all ages in Florida, Tennessee, Washington, and internationally in Florence and Pistoia, Italy. She has choreographed combat for middle-school and high-school productions, developed preschool drama programming, and inspired students in the studies of Shakespeare, dance, acting and improvisation. Candace is proud to be a member of the Studio East faculty because Studio East strives to give every student a chance to find their truth in theatre.
Candice Pullom, since 2014
Candice is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing and specializes in teaching Musical Theater. She enjoys teaching sound singing fundamentals, healthy vocal technique, diction, musicianship, and interpretation, and has a special fondness for teaching healthy belting and mixes. Finding the appropriate repertoire for students to shine is also her delight! She has been a member of Actors Equity Association since 1995 and has performed in the Broadway and 1st National Tour of the Tony Award nominated The King and I as well as the 1st National tour of Jekyll and Hyde. Some of her many regional theater credits include Ellen in Miss Saigon at the 5th Avenue Theater and the world premier of A Christmas Story the Musical, where she can be heard on the original cast recording as the soprano in the Radio Quartet.
Corey Dunne, since 2018
Corey is the Education Director at Studio East. Corey comes to the Studio with over 10 years of experience in children’s theater, having done everything from teaching, to directing, to building sets, and everything in between. She loves teaching theater and witnessing kids make discoveries about their characters and themselves! As a performer, some of her favorite roles include Maureen Johnson in RENT, Velma Von Tussel in Hairspray, and Poquito Tito in SkippyJon Jones in the Cirque de Olé. Corey holds a BA in Theater Education from Missouri State University, and an MFA in Arts Leadership at Seattle University.
Court Huston (Studio Alum)
Court Huston has been around the Studio since 2009. She began acting at the age of 9 and has since forged a lasting bond with Shakespeare and other early modern dramatists. Court has studied English Literature at Regis University and at King’s College London. She has taken courses at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA), as well as the Globe Summer School in London. Her passions include clowning, carpentry, set design, animals (and animal rescue!), and social activism. She believes in creating a space where young people from all walks of life can discover the importance and liminality of art and art-making.
Damian Martin, since 2017
Damian is thrilled to be teaching at Studio East. Originally from Ireland,, he began his career as a professional musician in London’s West End. Appearances at theatre festivals throughout the UK as accompanist and Musical Director were followed by staff positions with the Rank Organization, P&O Cruises and Holland America Line. For the last 14 years he has been a military musician in the U.S. Army music program performing for dignitaries and heads of state, and presenting educational clinics throughout the United States and Europe.
He has taught and mentored singers and musicians from elementary school through college and is committed to sharing his passion for music and the arts with as many people as he can find! In recent years he has performed as Musical Director at the Dinner Theatre in Elizabethtown, KY, worked as voice coach and rehearsal pianist at the Governor’s School, VA, and for the last 3 years been Musical Director for the SHAPE Player’s Theatre in Belgium, where he won an ‘IMCOM’ award 2 years running for best original musical score for a play. He has performed as accompanist for artists such as Darmon Meader (New York Voices) to Mark King (Level 42) and many in between, as well as appearing on television and radio in major U.S. markets and various European countries.
He completed undergraduate studies at Goldsmiths College, University of London and the London College of Music and Media. In addition to performing and teaching, Damian is currently pursuing his Masters degree in Film Music composition at the Seattle Film Institute.
David Duvall, since 1999
David has been a musical director/composer/pianist in the Seattle area for 30+ years, working on a great many Equity, non-Equity and scholastic productions with such companies as SCT, ACT, Tacoma Little Theatre, CenterStage, Montana Repertory Theatre, Seattle Shakespeare Company, Theatre Northwest Group and here at Studio East. Besides teaching privately at Studio East, David has taught at Cornish College, SCT, TLT, been a guest artist at many area high schools, and has been a faculty member of Studio East’s YAPI program for 14 years. He has received two Emmy nominations for his television scores, and frequently performs as a singer/songwriter.
David Dryfoos, since 2019
David Dryfoos is a multi-faceted professional musician. He recently graduated from University of the Pacific with a Bachelor of Music in Music Composition. In addition to being a composer, he is a theatrical music director, piano accompanist for choir, solo voice, and solo instrument, sound designer, and Foley artist.
Deonn Ritchie Hunt, since 1999
Deonn has been teaching, performing and directing in the Seattle area for the past 20 years. She has taught and directed at numerous theaters and schools including Youth Theatre Northwest, Village KidStage, Bainbridge Performing Arts, Shoreline Community College, Stone Soup, West Seattle Theatre Arts and Rose Hill Jr. High. She has worked with Studio East since 1999. Also a playwright, her children’s musicals have been regularly produced throughout the Puget sound. Deonn is currently part of StoryBook Theater where she was last seen as the Mother in Rapunzel and Little Engine in The Little Engine That Could.
Emily Beckley, since 2017
Emily is thrilled to be part of the teaching team at Studio East. She has worked in Early Childhood Education since 2005 and was a dance teacher for several years before that. Emily is a seasoned performer and has been on stage at many local theaters, including Seattle Musical Theater, Renton Civic Theater, Burien Actor’s Theater, and Snoqualmie Falls Forest Theater. Originally from Southeast Texas, she now lives in Renton with her husband, Brian.
Gilly Kelleher, since 2019
Gilly Kelleher (she/her) is a teaching artist, actor, director, designer, dialect coach, and writer. She graduated from the (no longer existing) Foothill Theatre Conservatory before completing her BA degrees in Drama and English (with a Creative Writing Emphasis) at the University of California, Irvine. She grew up in England & the Bay Area, giving her unique preparation for the weather in the Pacific Northwest. She can be seen teaching and performing all around the Seattle area. Favorite roles include Dromio of Ephesus in Comedy of Errors (Last Leaf Productions), Romaine Patterson in the South Bay reading of the global premiere of The Laramie Project: Ten Years Later (City Lights Theater Co.), and, most recently, King Henry in Last Leaf’s Henry VIII. Gilly often finds that her interests in writing, language and theater intersect in working with young artists, and she delights in working with students of all ages on exploring their creativity. Offstage she can often be found reading, drinking coffee/tea, or playing Dungeons & Dragons.
Helen Roundhill, since 2018 (Studio Alum)
Helen Roundhill is a Seattle based theatre artist who self identifies as a Jack of all Trades. Subsequently she loves everything to do with theatre. Musicals, Shakespeare, Cabaret and Drag, she’s seen it, tried it, loved it and come back for more. On-stage, off-stage, and back-stage, doesn’t matter. Before settling in Seattle she performed and costumed her way through London and Las Vegas. Previous to that she spent four years in Indiana earning her theatre degree from University of Evansville. Previous even to that…She was a Studio East kid. She is a dinosaur enthusiast and would love to see your impressions.
Jayne Ava, since 2019
Hailing from Alberta, Canada, Jayne Ava always knew she wanted to perform. She attended Victoria School for the Performing and Visual Arts and danced competitively for 12 years as well as teaching competitive dance classes. Her love for the stage led to her acceptance into the prestigious musical theatre program at Sheridan Institute in Toronto, Ontario. After receiving a degree in theater and performing in multiple professional shows, Jayne moved to Los Angeles to pursue writing and performing alternative-pop music. She has performed at many esteemed venues all around LA and Canada. She is currently working on her second studio album and continues to write for a multitude of artists in Canada and Los Angeles. For the past 5 years she has also helped run a theater company that puts up professional productions for children ages 8-18 at various schools in Los Angeles.
Jeremy Dumont, since 2020
Jeremy Dumont is a nationally recognized choreographer, director and educator having begun his dance training in the Dallas/Fort Worth area where he studied ballet, tap, jazz and musical theater. After graduating from the American Musical & Dramatic Academy in New York City, Jeremy joined the international tour of West Side Story (Arab) and played such venues as the Chatlelet Opera House in Paris and the Esplanade Theater in Singapore. As a performer, Jeremy has been in numerous regional productions including the world premiere of the new musical The Fortress of Solitude, produced by The Public Theater. Select performance credits include: Cabaret, Joseph and the… , The Rocky Horror Show, A Christmas Carol (Dallas Theater Center); Footloose, High School Musical (The Alhambra Dinner Theater); Evita, Hairspray, Rent, 42nd Street, Big River, Fiddler on the Roof (Casa Manana). After years of performing, Jeremy now works primarily as a choreographer/director and is a member of the Stage Director and Choreographer Society. Select choreography/directing credits include: 42nd Street, Guys & Dolls (Bucks County Playhouse); A Christmas Carol (Dallas Theater Center); Eugene Onegin (The Dallas Opera); West Side Story (North Carolina Theater); Big River, Jekyll & Hyde, West Side Story, Rock of Ages (Casa Manana) Hedwig & The Angry Inch, The Toxic Avenger, A Chorus Line, Spring Awakening (Uptown Players).
Julia Gorordo, since 2017 (Studio East Alum)
A passionate Studio kid of over a decade, Julia is thrilled to be working as a Teaching Artist! She was raised in Snohomish, WA, and now studies Music Education and Classical Voice at the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music. When it comes to theater she’s done everything, from acting to teching/props/costuming to directing/music directing and writing shows. Theater is her passion, and she loves to be involved in any role she can, although her passion lies in teaching and directing. Her teaching is often inspired by Orff Schulwerk, and the concept that children learn how they play. She tries to incorporate this into every teaching position she has, bringing the natural process of playing and having fun into learning.
Julie Grant – MFA, MAP, MSW: In her 23-year career as a professional Equity actor, Julie performed at major regional theatres throughout the West Coast and Midwest, including Oregon Shakespeare Festival, A Contemporary Theatre, Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, Sacramento Theatre Company, Seattle Children’s Theatre, American Player’s Theatre, Group Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Bathhouse Theatre, and Pioneer Square Theatre. As a freelance teacher, director, and coach since 1985, she has worked with young actors from grade school through college, focusing primarily on Shakespeare, Vocal Production, and Musical Theatre, including 11 summers with the Studio East YAPI program, and 4 years with Core Theatrics. As a mental health professional, (Masters Degrees in Psychotherapeutic Psychology and Social Work) Julie is committed to the holistic wellbeing of young artists, and has developed and implemented programs specifically designed to cultivate and strengthen emotional and psychological resilience in young adults.
Justin Beal, since 2007
Justin holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education from the University of Washington and is an actor, vocalist, pianist, composer, and teacher. Justin musically directed The Marvelous Land of Oz, ‘Twas the Night, and Honk! on the Studio East Mainstage, and also musically directs Studio East’s summer teen camps. Justin composed music for two recent Mainstage shows: Wonderland and The Marvelous Land of Oz. Some of his favorite acting roles include Leo Bloom in The Producers (Seattle Musical Theatre) and Will Parker in Oklahoma! (Snoqualmie Falls Forest Theatre).
Kate Janzen, since 2019
Kate Janzen, composer/director/accompanist, has been working in the field of music since the age of 17. Her first job while a senior in high school was accompanying a local community choir, and since then has never looked back. After receiving her Bachelor of Music degree from Sacramento State’s School of Music –with a double focus in Jazz Studies/Arranging and Theory & Composition– she has gone on to become a highly sought after musician wherever she resides. With multiple awards for her compositions, a short original Musical tucked under her belt, and nearly 20 years of experience as an accompanist and music director, she moved to Seattle, WA from Sacramento, CA in September 2018 to further her desire for growth and exploration in creative collaboration.
She currently is the music teacher for The Waldorf High School and Seattle Country Day’s Focus Choir, accompanist for Backstage Dance Studio, Merdian School, Bush School, and O’Dea High, plays for local churches, teaches private voice/piano/theory, and is now beginning to work on her first full length musical and a choir warm-up book.
Kay Onorati, since 2018 (Studio alum)
Kay graduated from Western Washington University with a Bachelors in Theatre Education and Communication. She has performed and taught in over 25 states and 50 cities across the United States while touring nationally with Missoula Children’s Theatre. Her passion for theatre started at a young age and she hopes to do for the next generation what was done for her; instill confidence in young artists and create theatre accessible to all.
Kaysy Ostrom, since 2015 (Studio alum)
Kaysy is an actress, playwright, singer-songwriter, and teaching artist from Seattle. She is an alumni of Studio East, a graduate of SMU with a BFA in Theatre Studies, and a graduate of Seattle Children’s Theatre’s TAT Lab: a teaching artist training program. You may have seen Kaysy acting around town with StoryBook Theater or Secondstory Repertory among other theatres. Her plays have been produced in Boise, Dallas, and New York City, but her favorite thing to do is teach theater! She is passionate about arts education and inspiring the next generation to be creative, confident, and collaborative. You can find her teaching at Studio East and at Youth Theatre Northwest. Her teaching specialties include creative drama, story drama, play creation, scene study, acting technique, singing technique, audition workshops, and musical theater.
Kim Douthit, since 2011
Kim was born and raised in Redmond, Washington. She relocated to New York for school, attending Hofstra University and receiving her BFA in Theatre Arts with a specialization in performance. After working professionally in NYC for a number of years as an actor, director and playwright, Kim attended LAMDA to study Classical Acting and Shakespeare. She started working as a teaching artist in 2009 and discovered a new love of educating children in the arts. She loves working at Studio East. It is a privilege to work with other artists and educators who are so passionate about theatre and to help students on their artistic journey. In her spare time she also works as a Paranormal Investigator and loves learning about history and hanging with ghosts.
Kimberly Dorman, since 2015
Kimberly is excited to be a part of the Studio East family. A Kirkland native, she is thrilled to be putting her 25 years of theatre experience to work in her home town. Most recently she has been teaching theatre in the private school world, putting her passion for Shakespeare to good use in an after school program called Shake it Up with the Bard. A life long learner, she is currently enrolled in Central Washington’s Graduate program for Theatre Production.
Kristin Burch, since 2014
Kristin is overjoyed to be part of the Studio East family! She began her performing career at the early age of 4, and is now a professional singer, dancer, actress, and choreographer. A Northwest native, Kristin is originally from Olympia, WA. She earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Theater (Acting/Directing) from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, WA. Throughout her childhood, Kristin trained with many prestigious dance academies, studied music and acting, and was a competitive gymnast. She also graduated from modeling school, worked in film and television, and sang in many local and national talent competitions.
Now as an adult, Kristin is thrilled to be working both on and off the stage. Recently she has appeared on many local stages including Village Theatre, SecondStory Repertory, Seattle Musical Theatre, and Renton Civic Theatre. One of her favorite roles was playing Anybodies/Maria(u/s) in the International Tour of West Side Story. Other favorite roles include Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, Roxie Hart in Chicago, Nancy in Oliver!, Petra in A Little Night Music, and Christine in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. Kristin has choreographed Studio East’s annual production of ‘Twas the Night…, and put her gymnastic skills to work as an Elf in StoryBook Theater’s production of The Elves & The Toymakers.
Lani Brockman, Founder
Lani is the Executive Artistic Director of Studio East and holds degrees in Children’s Theater and Theater Performance. In addition to her artistic duties, Lani directs for the Studio Mainstage as well as writes and directs for StoryBook Theater, the Studio’s popular series of musicals for young audiences. She and her writing partner, Susan Bardsley, recently won a national award for their musical Emperor’s New Clothes. Favorite productions she has directed include Sweeney Todd, Into the Woods, Little Women, I Never Saw Another Butterfly and Quilters.
Marion Reader, since 2017 (Studio alum)
Marion is a dancer, actor, educator, and a proud alumni of Studio East. Marion has been working in arts education for the past six years in Seattle and the Bay Area. Specializing in creative drama, play-based education, and movement, Marion works with students as collaborators in their own education. As a teaching artist, Marion believes in supportive classroom communities in which learning is creative, fun, and developmentally stimulating for all students.
Matt Lang, since 2017
Matt is excited to join the teaching team at Studio East! Matt works as an educator in theatre, dance, and gymnastics in the greater Seattle area. Matt studied Musical Theatre at both Webster University’s Conservatory of Theatre Arts and Point Park University’s Conservatory of Performing Arts. For the past 12 years, he has worked in many aspects of Seattle theatre. As an actor, he has performed at many theaters including: Pittsburgh Public Theatre, Village Theatre, Seattle Children’s Theatre, ArtsWest, Showtunes Theatre Co., SecondStory Repertory, Seattle Musical Theatre, Tacoma Musical Playhouse, and Renton Civic Theatre. Favorite roles include: Mark, Rent; Curly/Dream Curly, Oklahoma!; Bobby, Urinetown; Anthony, Sweeney Todd; Kevin, Weird Romance. He is the co-founder and Managing Artistic Director of Studio 18 Productions.
Matthew Posner, since 2016
Matthew has been a professional Actor/Singer for over 15 years. He grew up in New Hampshire where he earned his BA in Music Theatre from Plymouth State University. Bouncing around the country, from New York to Maine, Pennsylvania to Tennessee, and after finishing up playing Lancelot on the National Tour of Camelot, Matthew finally settled down in Washington. Taking his AEA status, Matthew works consistently with the Village Theatre and the 5th Avenue in such recent productions as “A Christmas Story”, “Billy Elliot”, “The Sound of Music”, “Fiddler on the Roof”, “Carousel”, and “How to Succeed In Business…”.
His favorite roles have included Bobby Strong (Urinetown), The Cowardly Lion (Wizard of Oz), Buddy Foster (Side Show), and Jean Valjean (Les Miserables). When not on stage, Matthew enjoys a very fruitful career as a Voice Teacher and Voice Over Artist, making both serious and funny voices for a living. With a custom sound studio, his voice can be heard interpreting various Video Game Characters, International product Promos, Audiobooks, and Radio Commercials. Through perseverance he has acquired continuous Voice work with some recognizable brands such as Dreamworks, Sony, Sharper Image, and Microsoft.
Megan Connell, since 2018 (Studio alum)
Megan is a proud Studio Alum who just recently made her way back to the Pacific Northwest! She’s experienced first hand how arts training has not only helped her with her acting career, but other aspects of her life as well and is honored to get to pass that down to new generations. Megan received her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in their Stage and Screen Acting program. She’s spent the past 5 1/2 years in Las Vegas performing in theater on The Strip and in film projects around the area.
Melissa Gollofon, since 2016 (Studio alum)
Melissa is overjoyed to be back at the Studio! She participated in numerous programs at Studio East as a teen and young adult. Melissa taught second grade and coached competitive High School Speech and Drama in eastern Montana. Since 2016, she has been back in the PNW teaching second grade in Sammamish and continues to spend her summers sharing her love of theater with students in the greater Seattle area. In the words of Oscar Wilde, “I regard the theatre as the greatest of all art forms. The most immediate way in which a human being can share with another the sense of what it is to be a human being.”
Michelle Lynn Conklin, since 2018
Michelle is an actor/diretor/ teaching artist in the Seattle area. She specializes in working with younger children. Her teaching passion is the help children expand their creative stories and explore how their bodies and voices can adapt to the many stories we tell. Michelle particularly enjoys bringing old folklore and fairy tales to the theatre for children to play and learn. She has also supported her own children into the performing world. Most notable stage credits include Island Shakespeare Festival and Second Story Rep.
Molly Goforth, since 2018 (Studio alum)
Molly is an innovative and dedicated teacher, director, and coach with more than twelve years of experience within the performing arts and instruction arenas. She is passionate about creating a new generation of theatre artists and theatre-goers by re-assessing the unique quality and value of live theatre. She has considerable experience teaching in diverse environments, encompassing university, community college, studio, corporate and non-profit settings as well as private coaching. Molly has copious specialized experience teaching Acting Voice, Movement, Speech and has worked with students with diverse backgrounds. Her pedagogy is rooted in belief that specificity in acting training is an expansive, rather than a reductive, process, incorporating all aspects of vocal, somatic, and imaginative awareness.
Nathan Drackett, since 2018
Nathan is an actor, teacher, acrobat and musician. He has a BA in Theatre and a Minor in Japanese Language and Culture from Northwestern University. Since moving to Seattle in 2016, Nate has worked with Kitsap Forest Theatre in their productions of Peter Pan (Hook) and Tuck Everlasting (Angus). Before 2016, Nate worked with Filament Theatre (James and the Giant Peach, Cyrano), Lyric Opera Chicago (La Boheme, Die Meistersinger), Signal Theatre Ensemble, Mercury Theatre (Barnum: A Circus Musical), Redmoon Theatre, and Piven Theatre.
Nate was always most excited by productions that included bodies in movement in physical and emotional risk. No wonder he ended up teaching and training circus at The Actors Gymnasium in Chicago for 11 years, and currently trains and teaches at SANCA, a circus school in Georgetown. He’s most passionate about teaching brave people to do dangerous things in a safe way. A mischievous spirit who loves to follow the rules, Nate hopes to push the boundaries of what we think theatre, circus, and telling a story can be.
Pamela Turpen, since 2018
Pamela received her BA in dance performance with an emphasis in choreography from UNLV. She has taught dance and choreographed for a variety of ages and levels for over 20 years, focusing primarily on musical theatre, classical jazz, and Latin dance styles. She has performed with 5th Avenue Theatre, Village Theatre, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Seattle Opera, Triple Door, SD Prism Dance Theatre, and Arc Dance Productions. She has also done numerous local films and commercials. Doing comedy and improvisation is one of her favorite things and she has been doing impersonations such as Marilyn Monroe, Wonder Woman, and Disney Princesses with a company called Live Wires for over 15 years. Her teaching philosophy is one of inspiration, motivation, and accountability in order to achieve the greatest potential in her students.
Patrick Phillips, since 2020
Patrick Phillips is an actor and singer. He graduated from Australia’s National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA),in Sydney. He also holds a Certificate in TESOL, from Cambridge University. He has been living in Seattle since 2013. In the US, Patrick has played ‘Matt’ in ‘The Fantasticks’ (Top Theatre, LA) with Henry Darrow, and ‘Froggy’ in the hit comedy ‘The Foreigner’ for The Village Theatre, Seattle. In Australia, Patrick has had leading roles with Australia’s leading theatre companies, including; ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’ (Australian Tour), ‘Baby’, ‘Snoopy, The Musical’ and ‘Twelfth Night’ (‘Malvolio’ – Sydney’s Darling Harbor). For The Actors’ Forum he has played in; ‘Mrs Warren’s Profession’, ‘Barefoot In The Park’, ‘Same Time Next Year’, ‘Same Time Another Year’ and ‘The Cocktail Hour’.
He has an extensive list of prime-time TV (and film) credits in Australia (once playing alongside a 17 year old Nicole Kidman). He wrote, produced and performed in ‘Mostly Sondheim’ and other shows at The Sydney Opera House, gaining national recognition as an interpreter of the work of Stephen Sondheim. He toured ‘On Broadway’ with Tina Paradiso, to the US and his work was recognized by Barbara Cook. She invited him to sing in ‘The Barbara Cook Masterclass’ (Melbourne Concert Hall) and he subsequently trained with her privately in New York. Patrick plays in many syndicated national audio drama broadcasts for Jim French’s Imagination Theatre in Seattle and in Los Angeles (most recently, ‘Liliom’, playing alongside Charles Shaughnessy, Samantha Eggar and other celebrated veterans of screen, stage and radio). Patrick is a passionate teacher of voice/speech/acting. He has been teaching an integrated approach for 30 + years and regularly teaches actors in Seattle and Australia.
Rosie Smith, since 2018 (Studio alum)
Rosie is so excited to be joining the teaching team at Studio East after three summers as a lead assistant! She is a Studio Alum, and Elementary Education Major at the University of Oregon. Rosie believes that art education is so important for all students and improves student academic performance as well as confidence. Rosie grew up in the Seattle area and has performed at the 5th Avenue Theatre, Balagan Theatre, Seattle Children’s Theatre, and of course Studio East. Rosie has been a part of the Studio’s summer camps since middle school and is so excited to be working alongside such amazing instructors.
Samuel J. Pettit, since 2005
Samuel has appeared onstage with Seattle Opera, Barrington Stage Company, Village Theatre, TMP, Storybook Theater, and many others. Sam has worked as choreographer and director on Legally Blonde, Oliver, Pirates of Penzance, Anything Goes, Peter Pan, Red Hot and Cole, Pippi Longstocking, Camelot, Damn Yankees, Once On This Island, Once Upon A Mattress, Annie, Little Shop of Horrors, Grease, Seussical, Bye Bye Birdie and Nunsense. He wrote the book and lyrics to Robin Hood and The Marvelous Land of Oz with composer Justin Beal. Sam is also the co-founder of Origami Girl Productions.
Sarah Bixler, since 2018 (aka Bix) is a local Seattle area theater artist working as an actor, Stage Manager, director, and producer on top of her Teaching Artist work with Studio East and Youth Theatre Northwest. She trained in the department of Dance and Theatre at the University of North Texas, and received a Bachelor of the Arts in Theatre Arts alongside her K-12 Teaching Certificate before moving to Seattle in 2008. Bix previously worked with Rosebud Children’s Theatre Conservatory in Federal Way, and is a graduate of the Teaching Artist Training Lab (TAT Lab) with Seattle Children’s Theatre.
Bix has a deep appreciation for storytellers of all ages. She focuses on skills in acting with contemporary text, Shakespeare, physical theater, clown, stage combat, and voice for acting.
Sarah Hubert, since 2018 (Studio alum)
Sarah is a singer, actor, and teacher from the Seattle area. She holds a BA in Acting/Directing and will be starting her MFA in Acting this fall at the University of Central Florida. Sarah is just getting back from a year in Reims, France, where she taught English to elementary and middle-school aged children, the majority coming from low-income, refugee, and/or immigrant backgrounds.
Sarah has also taught kids aged 3-12 at Youth Theatre Northwest, the Jewish Day School, and the Stroum Jewish Community Center. Her favorite part of these experiences is empowering kids to come out of their comfort zones and try new things while building meaningful connections and social skills. Sarah participated in Studio East camps and classes from age 7-12, and is thrilled to be returning to the other side of the action.
Savannah Lynn, since 2018 (Studio alum)
Savannah found a home in the theatre at a young age and later achieved her BFA in musical theatre at Central Washington University. While adding the necessary tools to her tool box in her CWU classes, Savannah taught once a week with PlayEd, a non-profit educational theatre experience for young actors in Ellensburg, Washington. The 10 week program worked towards a final performance of musical numbers and consisted of valuable lessons regarding teamwork, focus, acting, singing, some dance, and, most of all, fun! Savannah is incredibly passionate about youth theatre. She cherishes the life long lessons it taught her as a child, that inevitably helped her rise to the occasion in both school, and in the professional world. Theatre gave her the confidence to own her space and be bold! She believes that the theatre can prepare you for any task at hand, and teaches you to color with every crayon in the box, expanding your mind to creative freedom! Savannah’s mentors in theatre were huge influences on her growing up. They inspired her to be herself, and to trust in her gut. If she can be that inspiration to even one student, Savannah would be over the moon.
Simon Pringle, since 2010
Simon is a professional actor and a graduate of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama. A native of Edinburgh, Scotland, Simon emigrated to America in February 2010. Theater credits include King Lear and Beowulf at The Arches Theater, Jackie or The Submission at The Tron Theater, San Diego, What The Butler Saw, Medea, Beauty And The Beast, Hurlyburly, and Uncle Vanya at The New Athenaeum Theater, A Midsummer Night’s Dream in Oslo, Norway and The Beams Are Creaking and An Ideal Husband at Seattle’s own Taproot Theatre Company.
Film credits include Leverage, Zig Zag Love, Sweet Fanny Adams in Hyperspace Eden and Taggart. Voice credits include Time For Drama at BBC Scotland and The Company of Heaven at Pacific Lutheran University. Simon holds a Masters Degree in English Literature from the University of St Andrews and has worked extensively for the Shakespeare Schools Festival in the United Kingdom. Simon is on faculty for Studio East’s Young Actor’s Professional Intensive program and directed A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Macbeth for the Teen Ensemble. Simon is married to local girl Anna Lee who grew up in Issaquah. They have two sons, Alasdair Caleb and new arrival Francis James.
Stephanie Graham, since 2016
Stephanie is a local actress, dancer, model, vocalist, dance instructor, choreographer – and she is thrilled to join the Studio East family in 2016! Steph grew up with parents in public education who always supported her love & pursuit of the performing arts. Throughout childhood and adolescence, Steph competed at national dance, & talent competitions across the United States. At age 15, she received a summer dance intensive scholarship to Broadway Dance Center in NYC. After graduating high school, she majored in Musical Theater at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. As an adult, Stephanie has continued to teach dance, model, and perform around the PNW.
She’s performed on stages across the Puget Sound: Seattle Musical Theater, Secondstory Repertory, Renton Civic Theater, Broadway Center Tacoma, The Triple Door, and Bumbershoot 2016. A few favorite roles include: “Karen Carpenter/Laura Danker” Are You There God, It’s Me Karen Carpenter (StageRight), “Magenta” Rocky Horror Show (Seattle Musical Theater), “Becky-Two Shoes” Urinetown (Renton Civic Theater). Recent choreography credits include: Annie at Issaquah High School (received a 5th Avenue Award for choreography in 2015), Addams Family and Seussical for Renton Civic Theater’s Summer Teen Program, and stage directed/choreographed at Bellevue College for their 50th Anniversary Showcase. Currently she is also member of the local cover band “Shelley and the Curves” as a vocalist!
Susan Bardsley, since 1998
Born and raised in Seattle, Sue has a BA in Music Education and a MM in Conducting, both from the UW. With Lani Brockman, Sue is the co-founder and composer of the popular series of musicals for young audiences, StoryBook Theater. Sue’s family includes children Cathleen, Max and Sophie, and her very supportive husband, Stephen Price. She believes that art can change the world, and aims to prove it one show, one actor, one musician at a time.
Vincent J. Orduña, since 2016
After receiving a BA in theatre, VJ did his post-graduate work at The National Shakespeare Conservatory in New York City and he is thrilled to be the new Educational Outreach Manager here at Studio East. Previously he worked as the Theatre Manager at the Mountlake Terrace High School Performing Art Center; before that he spent 14 years as Cultural Arts Coordinator for the City of Renton where he also Managed the Carco Theatre and ran their Annual Summer Teen Musical Program and he is currently the Executive Director for Seattle STAGERight Theatre (2015 Gregory Award Winner for Outstanding Muscial).
As an actor VJ has performed with theaters in town such as Village Theatre, Bellevue Civic Theatre, Showtunes, Seattle Musical Theatre, Tacoma Musical Playhouse and Seattle STAGERight among others; and his Directing resume includes several regional and area theatres including SecondStory Repertory, Renton Civic Theatre, and Seattle Musical Theatre.
Yena Han, since 2018 (Studio alum)
Yena is an actor, teaching artist, and freelance web designer. She graduated from Rice University in Houston, TX with a BA in Theatre and English, and has been doing Shakespeare, musicals, devised experimental work, and commercials in the Seattle area ever since. She discovered her love for teaching children ages 4-18 during her time as a Drama School Intern at Seattle Children’s Theatre, and she also coaches monologues, scene study, and improv workshops for college students and adults in the corporate world. Yena believes that students of all ages can benefit from the transformative creative release and practical social applications that theatre provides, and is excited to return to her roots at Studio East to give back to the community that fostered her love of the arts.