YPT's Drama School Faculty
Mike graduated from the University of Victoria with a BFA in Theatre in Education. Mike then completed a Bachelor of Applied Arts (Radio and Television Broadcasting – Advanced Standing) at Ryerson University. He is presently completing a Masters in Media Production at Ryerson University. Mike has dedicated his working life to educating and entertaining children. For the past several years he has been producing, starring and appearing in several children’s television series. He is presently starring in Time Blazers, has a re-occurring role on Monster Warriors, hosted several pilots and has a new series in development. Mike’s focus while completing his various degrees has been educating and entertaining children. While continuing his children’s television career, Mike has dedicated his time to teaching at YPT.
Heather Marie Annis
Heather has been teaching drama for over ten years. Her teaching experience includes running theatre camps, teaching classes at several schools through the GTA, workshops in Pochinko clown, physical theatre, playwriting and creation, as well as in theatre for social change. She has also worked extensively with Mixed Company theatre as a playwright (playwright in residence for the 2009/10 Season), creating shows with youth on topics such as bullying, harassment and homophobia. Heather has a BFA (Hons.) as well as a Masters with a focus on theatre for social change from York University. She works in film and theatre with a large focus on developing original works. Heather is Co –Artistic Director of U.N.I.T. Productions, the home of Canadian Comedy Award nominees, Morro and Jasp.
Paul is overjoyed to be back at YPT after having taught as an assistant instructor during last year’s summer program. Paul is a recent graduate of Queen’s University with degrees in drama and consecutive education. In addition to his work with YPT, he has taught for the Queen’s University Department of Drama, the Limestone District School Board and the Shaw Festival. As an actor, he has worked professionally with such companies as Theatre Kingston and the Thousand Islands Playhouse. Paul would like to thank Isaac and YPT for this incredible opportunity. Enjoy!
Last year for YPT, Mark taught Extreme Theatre and led the 2010 Ensemble. Mark holds an M.F.A. degree in Theatre Directing from York University and is also is a graduate of Queen's University's Artist in the Community Education Program and University of Toronto's UC Drama Program. He has taught in various settings over the years including universities, schools, acting studios, workplaces and prisons. Mark approaches his teaching and his own theatre work in the spirit of improvisation, exploration and collaboration. Mark has twice been nominated for a Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding Direction, and also for the John Hirsch Award in Directing and the Siminovitch Prize for Excellence in Theatre Directing. For more info on shows & thoughts about theatre, please check www.thresholdtheatre.ca.
Kevin is a recent graduate of OISE/University of Toronto, and also has a BAH in Drama and Sociology from Queen’s University. He has been teaching in the theatre arts for several years, and is thrilled that he has been able to work with YPT this past year in the Drama School. Kevin has performed in many musical theatre productions in Kingston, Ontario including Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Candide, and Into the Woods. He is excited to continue his career as an artist and educator in Toronto.
Marjie is a member of the Ontario College of Teachers and has taught in elementary schools for many years . She teaches drama, improvisation and creative writing in after school programs as well as drama school, workshops and camps at YPT. Marjie is a founding member of Triptych Lounge Comedy Improv and Four Corners Theatre. Recent performing credits include the original production of "The State of New York v Peter Pan" at the 2010 Hamilton Fringe Festival and its remount in Toronto. Currently she is performing in a Canada wide tour of “Russell’s World”, produced by Manitoba Theatre for Young People
Kate Fenton is an actor, director, writer and the Co-Artistic Director/Producer of The Quickening Theatre. Kate completed a George Cedric Metcalf Foundation Internship in Directing/Artistic Direction at Young People’s Theatre. She is now a Resident Artist Educator at YPT. Kate’s work has been presented at The Vancouver East Cultural Centre,Buzz Festival, New Ideas Festival, Red Fest, InspiraTO Festival, and several International Fringe Festivals. Upcoming credits include: Mister Baxter at Theatre Passe Muraille Sept. 20-29, 2012 and The De Chardin Project at Theatre Passe Muraille Feb. 7-17, 2013 produced by The Quickening Theatre. Kate holds an MFA from York University.
Melissa was first introduced to Young People's Theatre Drama School one fateful day when she was sixteen in a Saturday morning class and has been working for them ever since. With an Honors Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in acting from Ryerson University, Melissa has been teaching drama to children for nine years. She studied in the Emerging Actors Program at Nightwood Theatre and has also been training intensively in film/tv at various schools and with casting directors. Some production credits: The Cherry Orchard (Guild Festival Theatre), The Clicking Venus and Serious Money (Nightwood Theatre) and a staged reading of Parental Leave (Steady State Theatre Projects).
Sharon Heldt is a graduate of the Humber College Acting Program. She has been an actor for over 25 years. Sharon has performed in theatres across Canada, including the Stratford Festival. Sharon has also appeared in many commercial, television and film roles. Sharon has a strong musical theatre background that has taken her to New York City to perform Off-Broadway at the 47th Street Theatre. As a drama teacher for over 15 years, Sharon is thrilled to be teaching young and mature students alike. Sharon has taught with YPT, Theatre Aquarius, Arts Express, Etobicoke School for the Arts and workshops through the Toronto District School Board. Sharon continues to learn and study her craft by watching the exuberant energy and open imaginations of her students.
Beth is a theatre artist and artist educator. She is presently completing a Metcalf Internship in community-based arts with Jumblies Theatre, working as a lead artist on a residency in east Scarborough. Other projects this year include co-facilitating the Creators’ Unit with the Paprika Festival and teaching at YPT. She directed Ablaze and acted in HONK, If You Can Hear Me! (NNNN, NOW Magazine) at SummerWorks festival, and directed Escape from Grace (**** EYE Magazine) at the Toronto Fringe Festival. Beth has worked as an assistant professor in the acting program at Ryerson University, created and directed projects with young women through Theatre Revolve and led workshops for Soulpepper, Canadian Stage, and the Tarragon Theatre. She holds a BFA in acting from Ryerson University.
Rob is a theatre artist and educator. A graduate of Queen’s University, his work as a composer/playwright has been seen at the Buzz Festival (TPM), the Toronto Fringe, HOTScrawls Festival, Festival of Ideas and Creation, and the Day of Delight. He is also a regular performer and singer. As an educator, Rob has worked for a number of major school boards as well as Young People’s Theatre, Canadian Stage, Theatre Passe Muraille and Pleiades Theatre. He is currently the Artistic Producer of the Paprika Festival and the Associate Artistic Producer at Theatre Passe Muraille.
Brittany has directed productions for Original Kids Theatre Company, traveling children’s theatre, and Famous PEOPLE Players where she evolved as a Performer, Trainer, Educational and Touring Director, responsible for world-renowned shows in Canada, and abroad. She now serves on their Education Advisory Board. Brittany has taught and developed innovative programming for Centauri Summer Arts Camp, Carousel Players, diverse community organizations, school boards and ESL classes. She has also collaborated with Mixed Company Theatre and the Manitoba Theatre for Young People. Her passion is in physical theatre and has received a Diploma in Clowning from Brazil. Brittany specialized with a BA in Theatre, English and Drama-in-Education and received her B Ed from OISE/University of Toronto. She looks forward to co-creating POSSIBILITIES with the community of LKYTP!
Paul Lacey has a Specialized Honours B.A. in Theatre from York University, and a Bachelor of Education degree from the Ontario Institute of Studies in Education of the University of Toronto. This summer marks Paul’s seventh year of teaching with Young People’s Theatre. Alongside his work at YPT, Paul has also worked to bring drama classes to areas of need throughout the Toronto area as part of the Inspired Harmony project. He has also delivered drama instructional workshops to teachers in public schools across Toronto. During the school year, Paul is a primary school teacher, regularly using drama to enhance his lessons.
Megan was born and raised in Toronto. She attended University of Windsor for her B.A in Drama and Trent University for her B.Ed. Megan’s film credits include The Odysseus Project and the The Odysseus Conclusion. She has performed in several community theatres in Toronto and Windsor in numerous roles. As a primary teacher in Toronto, Megan understands the power that drama and the arts can have on young minds and development and strives to incorporate elements of drama into many of her lessons in school for children of all abilities. Megan is excited to be joining the YPT faculty.
At the University of Alberta, Sharon received a BFA in Acting and went on to work in professional theatre in Edmonton and beyond. She has worked in children’s theatre productions in schools and theatres alike. She has performed at the Citadel Theatre, Magnus Theatre, Sudbury Theatre Centre, the Vancouver International Comedy Festival, The Halifax and Edmonton Fringes, many summer theatres and at the Stratford Festival. As well as teaching at YPT, Sharon works with Learning Through the Arts and gives workshops on Shakespeare to junior age students in Toronto elementary schools.
Joanne is an actor, stage director and drama teacher. She holds an Honours BA in Drama from Queen's University, a B Ed from OISE / University of Toronto, and an MA in Drama from the University of Toronto. Joanne has been teaching drama to children for many years and is currently the drama coach for the Canadian Children's Opera Company (CCOC), as well as the Toronto Beaches Children's Chorus. She has taught drama at summer camps for the CCOC and Solar Stage Children’s Theatre, and is very excited to be part of YPT’s drama school. She also writes and adapts plays for children to perform. Selected directing credits include the new Canadian children’s opera Dragon in the Rocks, The Wizard of Oz and Oliver!
Aynsley Moorhouse is a theatre artist and educator. She co-founded a greatly successful after school drama program in Manhattan in 2007, and in Toronto has taught at Dramaway and YPT. Aynsley holds an MFA in Acting from The Actors Studio and an MA in Theatre Studies from the University of Toronto. She has appeared in numerous productions and short films in Winnipeg and New York City, and since arriving in Toronto has been focusing on dramaturgy, writing, and teaching. She has been apprenticing with dramaturge Iris Turcott at Factory Theatre since September 2009, and her performance-based sound pieces have been presented at various festivals around Toronto. In the spring she will be directing a play as part of the Foundry Theatre’s Reading Series and assistant directing The River Lady with The Lonesome Crowded West.
Laura is a professional actor, director, writer, with an MFA in acting from Harvard’s American Repertory Theatre and the prestigious Moscow Art Theatre School. She has performed on stages in the U.S., Canada, and Russia. Recent acting credits: Agamemnon (Theatre Cipher), Stranger (Praxis Theatre), and Macbeth (Classical Theatre Project). Laura appeared in Pontypool directed by Bruce McDonald and Truth by Oscar-nominated director Hubert Davis. Recent directing credits: The Package (Movieola), When I Was Young & In My Prime (Whistler Film Fest), and assistant director Jesus Chrysler (Praxis Theatre). Coming up: Girl in Fierce Monsters at SummerWorks 2012. Laura is thrilled to be teaching with YPT.
Mladen Obradović comes from Montenegro and is an actor, director, drama teacher and theatre producer. He holds an MFA degree from York University’s Theatre Department, a BFA from Belgrade’s Academy of Arts, as well as a Specialist’s Diploma for Musical from University of Belgrade. He taught drama for several drama schools in Toronto including TheatrePeace, Pulse Theatre, YPT, Arts Express, Shakespeare in Action and Centauri Summer Arts Camp. His Canadian acting credits include Andrei in Chekhov's "Three Sisters", Lalo in Pulse Theatre's "Night of the Assassins" and Conspiracy Theorist in Draft89's production, "FOE". He is the founder and the Artistic Director of Pulse Theatre, Toronto. www.mladenobradovic.com
Laura Quigley received a BFA from Simon Fraser University. She worked as co-artistic director of seventeenth floor performance co. creating and touring work nationally and internationally. She has worked with some of Vancouver’s most daring independent theatre artists including The Leaky Heaven Circus (Happyland), Radix (The Swedish Play), Felix Culpa (Howard Barker’s Possibilities), and Theatre Replacement. Laura has studied intensively with voice teacher Fides Krucker, and with Richard Armstrong at the Banff Centre. She has taught at SFU, Baja California Sur University, Humber College, as well as private voice and acting coaching. Recent work includes “Little Pea’s Revolution”, her newest critically acclaimed solo show.
Breanne is thrilled to be working with Lorraine Kimsa as a drama school teacher this year! She is a recent graduate of York University’s Theatre Studies program and is extremely happy to be out of school and in the ‘real world’. Teaching children’s theatre has always been an important aspect of Breanne’s life. She has taught and directed with Original Kids Theatre Company in London, Ontario as well as with Zodiactors, Solar Stage, and YPT in Toronto. Skills that children learn through theatre help shape them into socially active, confident, creative, and contributing members of their community which is why Breanne is sure she will forever be involved in children’s theatre. Keep those dreams alive and don’t shy away from your potential!
Dr. Erik Ross composes for all musical media and he has written for productions that include electronics, theatre, film and dance. He is an avid educator, and has taught private, class and conservatory composition, piano, theory and improvisation lessons to individuals of all ages and ability levels for 15 years. He has received numerous prizes and has received commissions from institutions such as the Canada Council, the Ontario Arts Council, the Toronto Arts Council and the Laidlaw Foundation. He has had live performances of his works in Australia, Canada, England, Japan, Latvia, Thailand, and the United States. www.erikross.com
Nathalie holds a BEd from OISE / University of Toronto, an MFA in Acting from York University and a BFA with a Specialization in Theatre Performance from Concordia University. She is a member of the Ontario College of Teachers. She has worked as a theatre educator and artist for many years. She has recently choreographed school showcases, plays and glee clubs. Her artistic work stems from physical theatre and collective creation. She will be acting with a Mighty Theatre in NYC this summer.
Elizabeth is an established actor/theatre artist/director and artist-educator with over 22 years experience. She has performed in theatres throughout Canada with many of our finest theatre artists, and has accrued considerable film, television and voice-over credits. Elizabeth coaches acting privately, as well holding teaching credits with numerous leading arts organizations, notably YPT, Soulpepper, Shakespearience, and her own ‘Shakespeare’Scool. In recent years she has also turned her hand to directing and is a founding member and contributing creative artist of Aether of Us Theatre Co. She holds a BFA Honours in Acting, as well as extensive training in voice and movement.
Lynn is an Actor/ Director/ Teacher with over 25 years experience. She holds a BFA in Acting Performance from the University of Alberta, has trained extensively throughout North America, including McGill University, The Banff Centre and Interlochen Center for the Arts and taught Drama, Acting, Scene Study and school workshops for YPT, Leah Posluns, Theatre Aquarius, Theatre Ontario, The York School, UCC, Tarragon Theatre and the TDSB. Lynn was program coordinator and senior faculty for Seneca College’s Theatrical Performance Certificate Program. She’s a proud member of ACTRA and Equity with a performance career encompassing roles in local and regional theatre, film, and television.
Anne-Marie Woods is a graduate of the Dalhousie Professional Actor Training Program, has a small business certificate through the HRDC SEB program and has had a wealth of experience in theatre, community outreach and the media. She is a spoken word artist, actor, writer, producer and creative consultant with her own company Imani Enterprises and has taught and performed nationally and internationally. She is pleased to be a Senior Theatre teacher and to be a part of the Residence Artist Educator Program where she produced two WORD UP showcases that fused theatre and spoken word and featured youth from various Toronto communities
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