Teachers

Sarah Arnold TAC Teacher & Director of Curriculum

Production Electrician

BFA Theatre

  • Sarah’s Bio

    Sarah is a New York based freelance production electrician and project manager, specializing in events and theatre. Sarah has enjoyed sharing her knowledge and love of technical production with all ages, from day campers and university students, to working professionals. Sarah holds a BFA from East Carolina University where she was an undergraduate teaching assistant in the technical theatre department. Sarah is the recipient of the Roulston Award for theatrical excellence from East Carolina University.

 

Becca Ball TAC Teacher and Head Administrator

Production Electrician, Stage Manager & Production Manager

BA Theatre  & English

  • Becca’s Bio

    Becca Ball is a Production Electrician, Stage Manager, and Production Manager. Becca began her life in theatre as an actor. But, one fateful day in high school, she was asked to help out with the production side of a show she was acting in and found that she enjoyed making theatre from the technical side more than acting.  After stage managing and assistant directing for some time, Becca began to play in light.  The magic of transforming an environment through color, texture and intensity of light and shadow captivates her.

    While attending Oberlin College, Becca ran two theaters on campus and worked as an electrician in a third. She interned at Jacob’s Pillow and American Dance Festival, and discovered her love for working with dancers. After her electrics internship at The Juilliard School, Becca immediately hit the road with Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane dance company, Doug Varone, Momix, Trisha Brown, Einstein on the Beach and other companies, and discovered she loved to travel. For the next six and a half years, she divided her time between freelancing in NYC and touring as a production electrician and stage manager, blending her love of lighting with her passion for bossing people around.  She has finally given up touring (for now), and is settling down.

    Now that she is staying in one place, working with youth has become important to Becca for many reasons. When Becca was young, math and science were hard for her, though she enjoyed them anyway. Every assignment was a battle – a battle she would win, but only after a long, long fight each and every time.  As an adult, Becca uses math and science in her profession and can’t help wishing that her early education had been more hands-on in these subjects. She has joined TAC, in part, because she would like to help apply math and science in ways she feels will be useful to students gaining understanding of these subjects in exciting, relevant ways that may make the ideas more useful to them. “If i’d had the hands-on exposure that we are going to bring to these kids, I might also have grasped concepts more quickly and had more fun while learning.”  Becca also wants to make working with youth a larger part of her life because she wishes to continue to learn and grow in new ways.  Working with kids and teens who bring such joy to their work inspires Becca, refreshing her appreciation of the work she does in the adult professional production world while bringing her new meaning and fulfillment.  All through her life, Becca has had amazing mentors and teachers who have been essential to her growth professionally and personally.  The wonderful adults in her life growing up have made her wish to continue the tradition of helping the next generation become the artists, technicians and people they wish to be. 

Kim Guzowski TAC Teacher, Educational Consultant & Executive Director

Teacher, Curriculum Writer, Production Manager, Director, Playwright, Lighting Technican &  Actress

MFA in Performance and Interactive Media Arts; MA in Applied Theatre; IB Certifications in MYP Arts/Theatre; MYP Design Technolgy; PYP

  • Kim’s Bio

    TAC is a culmination of things I’ve been enjoying and thinking about since I was young.  At six years old I found immense joy in creating theatre. I decided then that theatre would be my work in life, so I never understood why it was marginalized in my schools – relegated to purely an after school activity until I was in High School.  By 15 I was acting, directing, writing, teaching theatre and hanging lights.  This world of theatre, being on ladders and teaching made sense to me, yet it was more discouraged than encouraged because it was not “practical”.  As an adult, I find that this most impractical theatre training of my youth is the ground on which I  practically build an interesting fulfilling life as an adult.  A life that has led me to Rwanda to use theatre to help heal the effects of the genocide; to train formerly incarcerated men to work with teens through theatre; to write a curriculum in four subjects to support Eve Ensler’s work with teenage girls and her plays, I Am An Emotional Creature: the Secret Life of Girls Around the World; and to teach hundreds of first through eighth graders mandatory theatre and design technology that reinforced their academics while developing their social and emotional growth and, of course, their theatre artistry.

    What most bothers me about my own education is that every teacher, especially in high school, knew that theatre was my passion.  Yet, instead of teaching me to build with my geometry, I was banned from the theatre for flunking geometry.   I know now that if I had built with my geometry I would have understood it’s use and formulas in my limbs, which would have helped me to make understanding in my mind.  As a teacher who has taught several subjects, it is my opinion that if a student does not understand the relevance of a subject, then the educational system has failed, not the student.  Why should a student learn something if that student does not understand how what they are learning is useful?    We understand the usefulness of what we learn by using our learning in ways that have meaning to us.  Our educational system often does not emphasize the real application of concepts through making things that matter to us as students.  TAC is an attempt to help bridge this gap.  By bringing designers and technicians together with educators to create project-based lessons, TAC aims to create learning experiences that inspire students and deepen their understanding of what they are already learning in their classes by linking theory to practice.  I am hoping that our program will grow and inspire others to use theatre as a tool for teaching academics and art, while developing social and emotional growth in students.

    Kim has 20 years both as a theatrical professional and as a teacher. Kim holds an MFA in Performance and Interactive Media Arts from Brooklyn College; an MA in Applied Theatre from the University of Southern California; International Baccalaureate Certifications in: Primary Years 1, Middle Year Arts 1 & 2, Middle Year Design Technology 2; Alexander Technique Teacher Certification; and a BA in Theatre, Literature and Religion from Sarah Lawrence College. She was awarded the American Shakespeare Center’s Words in Action Award for Excellence in teaching Shakespeare in 2011. While teaching, Kim has continued to work as a professional production manager, stage manager and production electrician. She has worked for Lincoln Center, Brooklyn Academy of Music, George Lewis, Meredith Monk, Danspace, The Wooster Group, Conway & Pratt Projects, Festival Productions and many, many others.  In addition, she continues to work as an Alexander teacher and to freelance in production.

    In her free time Kim enjoys being with her friends and family, reading, cooking, fostering kittens, making packages of joy to surprise friends and family, getting to the ocean and writing plays, letters, journal entries, poetry, lists and notes in the margins of books.

 

Amy Harper TAC Teacher

Lighting Designer, Production Electrician

BFA Theatrical Production/Lighting Design

  • Amy’s bio

    Amy began her work in the theatre as an actress in her Junior High Drama Club and quickly realized she preferred being behind the scenes. Throughout high school and college Amy continued her work in design and technical theatre, graduating from  University of Arizona Magna Cum Laude in the Theatre Arts College, and Honors College with her BFA in: Theatrical Production, with an emphasis in Lighting Design.

    Amy has been freelancing as a lighting designer, moving light operator and production electrician in lighting for tv, dance, opera,  theatre, fashion and events for over twenty years. She has worked in New York City, nationally and internationally for companies such as MTV, HBO, Showtime, China Central Television, Fox Sports, Axis Theatre Co & Strohmeier lighting.  Playing with different ways that light can be used excites Amy. The varied experiences that freelancing in lighting offers keeps Amy stimulated and constantly learning in her field.

    Every day, Amy uses math, physics, psychology, communication, computing, business management and finance. To this day, Amy struggles with math, and wishes more than anything someone were there to teach her the “why” of math when she was young instead of telling her to “just solve the equation”. Math finally became important to Amy just after she graduated, when she saw a co-worker bring in a ream of paper full of one math equation, plug it into his computer, and make the body suit he was programming capable of seamlessly interacting physically with a live video image. Suddenly, the dancer could grab and tie knots in the graphic, and it would pull and snap back like taffy. She could touch different places on the graphic, and compose music while the graphic reacted exactly where she touched – all because of math!

    From her own experience with teachers and mentors who guided her through her education and interests into her adulthood, Amy feels paying it forward by teaching and mentoring young people helps make them into stronger and more well rounded adults. This help arms kids early with the power to make strong decisions, affecting the rest of their lives and their work ethic, no matter what field of work they choose.

    In her free time, Amy loves cooking, fishing and camping, alpine skiing, and gardening. Amy’s special interest is world traveling, both for work and play.

Zoe “Where” Huertas TAC Teacher

Business Owner, Production Electrician, Production Manager, Printmaker

BFA Theatre/Lighting Design

  • Where’s Bio

    Zoe is a longtime maker of things, production electrician, production manager, printmaker, and owner of Artisan 10 Prints.  In high school, Zoe started acting, but soon realized that lighting was more to her liking. Her high school experiences in theatre and light led to a BFA in Theatre with a concentration in Lighting Design from Syracuse University.  As an adult, Zoe added print making/letterpress to her skills because she had always been interested in paper goods and design. In both lighting and printmaking/letterpress, Zoe enjoys making clean, beautiful things out of a dirty, messy process.

    Zoe works has a production electrician and production manager for many venues and companies, such as: Lincoln Center Institute, Duke University, 59 E. 59 Theatre, Tinc Productions, and the Winter Garden.  Every day in her work, Zoe depends upon math and science.  She wishes that she had been more interested in both of these subjects when she was a student, and hopes her teaching will inspire all students to learn how to use math and science in their lives.

    Zoe firmly believe you can’t expect people to take your place until you show them how you want it done.  “We must train the next generation to be smarter, more thoughtful and more creative than ourselves.  Students provide inspiration and a reason to continue learning ourselves.“

Cynthia Jankowski TAC Teacher

Stage Technician

BA Theater


  • Cynthia’s Bio

    Cynthia is a native New Yorker with a BA in Theatre from Hunter College. She joined tech crew her freshman year of high school and has never left the theatre. She completed a production internship at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in 2004 and went on to be a TA at Hunter College from 2005-2007. She freelances in many aspects of theatre, working most often as a scenic carpenter and show technician. The most appealing part of her career is being able to learn and do new things all the time and meeting fun, creative, and supportive people. She enjoys cooking, crocheting, camping, and her new camera.

John McCullough TAC Teacher & Educational Consultant

Teacher, Technical Director, Carpenter, Rigger

MFA Technical Design and Production

  • John’s Bio

    John McCullough has been building things for plays since he worked for his class company in eighth grade. Now, he is the Technical Director at New York City College of Technology,where he teaches scenery construction and stage machinery. John is also the Technical Director for New York Stage and Film’s Powerhouse Summer Season. Other work includes freelance technical direction and event production with companies such as Ars Nova, Yale Repertory Theatre, and Viva Creative. John earned his MFA in Technical Design and Production at the Yale School of Drama.
Melissa Mizell TAC Teacher

Lighting Designer

MFA Lighting Design

  • Melissa’s Bio

    Melissa Mizell is a professional lighting designer who earned her MFA at Yale, but began her life in theatre in the first grade.  From the very beginning, Melissa would ask her teachers if she could direct and make sets instead of being on stage for the small classroom skits!  It is through this early love that she found her way to her career as a Lighting Designer.  At thirteen, Melissa was working as an intern at Candlewood Playhouse in Connecticut, where she was exposed to every part of making theatre.  By the time she was a sophomore in high school, Melissa was the scenic and lighting designer for the school plays.  She used her high school as an experiment to teach herself how to use the electrical and design knowledge she was learning in books, because there was no formal drama department.  Through these early experiences, Melissa fell in love with lighting and with the community that theatre brings together.  She finds that most theatrical artists are incredibly intelligent and charismatic people who love challenges as much as she does.

    Problem solving in Lighting Design is one of Melissa’s favorite elements of her job.  Problem solving in light is about storytelling, math, science and emotion.  Melissa continues to be ever-interested in investigating the power light has to affect us.  She feels very fortunate to have had a few teachers who helped her pave a path to that allowed her to follow a passion even though it wasn’t standard curriculum.  These teachers helped her to articulate how theater utilized science, history, literature, math, language and visual art. She enjoys teaching because she wants others to have the kinds of self-motivated hands-on exploratory education she had.  Though much of her early education was through her own exploration, she had teachers who made the space for her to explore her craft without whom she would not have found the life she loves. Her teachers gave her a voice, when they didn’t have to, and she wants to create that opportunity for others.  As a Lighting Designer, Melissa has worked: as Resident Lighting Designer for events at The Cathedral Church of St John the Divine; for fashion shows, including Ralph Lauren windows and Calvin Klein; for private events at The Guggenheim Museum NYC and Met Museum; for many NYC theatre companies, including: Guerrilla Shakespeare Project, Inviolet Rep, and The Drama League; for Princeton University, Illinois Wesleyan University and Rutgers Opera Department; and toured internationally and nationally for three years with Porgy and Bess. She has also been a panelist for the Edith Lutyens and Norman Bel Geddes Design Enhancement Fund via ART/NY.

Mike Patterson TAC Teacher

Production Electrician, Rigger, Jack of all technical theatre trades

BA Communication/Theater TV Production/Philosophy

  • Mike’s Bio

    Michael “Mikey” Patterson has been wielding a wrench, saw, paintbrush & wearing a harness as a jack of all technical production trades for 23 years. Mike is a self-proclaimed math geek who came to the technical theatre trades not through the love of art, but through his enjoyment of problem solving. He is known in the business as a master problem solver because he looks at systems differently than artists, he looks at them as big math problems. Mike’s career began in college when he was a psych major who came to help a friend at the college television studio and was asked to take a paid position. Discovering that he was good at this work, enjoyed it and could make a good income, Mike continued, working professionally and also as an adjunct professor at Seton College, teaching students how to do technical production and design for television and theatre. Over the years, Michael has found he gets a real enjoyment from teaching others how to make things and problem solve. In his off-time, Mikey skis with his family, enjoys his own kids, competes in fun intense physical challenge races like the Tough Mudder and reads calculus text books for fun. He has a B.A. in Communication/Theater TV Production with a minor in Philosophy.
Nicole K Press TAC Teacher & Educational Consultant

Stage Manager

BA Technology in Entertainment Technology; AA Humanities, Social Sciences & Early Childhood Education; NY State Certified Early Childhood Development; Certified Teacher of English as a Foreign Language

  • Nicole’s Bio

    Nicole K Press (Stage Manager, Production Manager, Theatrical Technician) has been professionally stage managing for theater, dance, music, circus, opera and special events for over 15 years. She has worked at such institutions as Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, NYU Skirball Center, New York City Center, Jacob Javits Center, The Irish Arts Center, The New Victory Theater, The SoHo Playhouse, HERE Arts Center and more. She has toured both nationally and internationally with the Troika/Broadway Asia’s tour of The Sound of Music, Lee Breuer’s The Gospel at Colonus, The Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company, Cirque Le Masque, The Rap Guide to Evolution/The Canterbury Tales Remixed, among others. Recent New York highlights include: Gotham Chamber Opera Company’s world premier of Eliogabalo, Lee Breuer’s opus work: La Divina Caricatura, Julie Feeney: 10 nights in New York at the Irish Arts Center and a most humbling ASM position for the world class benefit: From Broadway with Love: A benefit concert for Sandy Hook. When not backstage, Nicole has often found herself in the classrooms of New York sharing her passions of what happens behind the scenes. She has been working as a Teaching Artist mentoring students in Stage Management, Lighting Design, Scenic Design and other backstage arts for the last 10 years with The Roundabout Theater Company, Town Hall, and other schools. Nicole holds a Baccalaureate in Technology in Entertainment Technology from New York City College of Technology, an Associates Degree in Humanities and Social Sciences with a focus in Early Childhood Education from SUNY Rockland, is NY State Certified in Early Childhood Development and is recently certified to teach English as a Foreign Language. An avid traveler, explorer, scuba diver, and general student of the world, Nicole is eager to aid students young and old become agents in their own learning.
Shawn “Junior” Robinson TAC Teacher and Executive Director

Production Electrician, Rigger, Production Manager, Carpenter, Draftsman, Technical Director & Designer

ETCP Certifications as Electrician and Arena Rigger; BFA Technical Theatre & Design

  • Shawn’s Bio

    Shawn Robinson, aka “Junior”, got hooked on lighting & stagecraft when he put his hands on his first theatrical light at age 14 as a freshman in the high school drama club. Once he discovered he could study technical theatre in college, that was it – his first love and career were all rolled up in one and he has never looked back.

    In school, Shawn struggled with math & science. He is eternally grateful to his aunt and uncle, both very accomplished electrical engineers, for tutoring him in math & science almost every Friday night of his high school career. Now he and those around him depend upon his math & science skills to make electrics and rigging operate safely. His own difficulty in math & science has led him to the desire to help young people make their studies more practical and exciting by helping them to understand how math, science, literature and history, coupled with technology, can be applied in the world of theatre, entertainment and special events with amazing artistic results.

    For more than twenty years, Shawn has continued to learn new things about the world of technical production and the increasing amount of technology involved in making seemingly impossible events of all shapes and sizes happen time after time.  He has accomplished this in the company of an amazing group of colleagues and friends and has happily taught others what he has learned along the way. The love he has for his craft, with support and encouragement of his family, friends, teachers, and colleagues, has made him a person who loves his job, loves learning, and wants to pass this love and knowledge along to future generations.

    Shawn has a BFA in Technical Theatre & Design from Montclair State University and is an ETCP (give full name here in parentheses) certified Electrician and Arena Rigger. He specializes in production electrics and rigging; however, depending on the project, he also contributes to other areas of production as: a production manager, technical director, carpenter, draftsman and occasionally designer. He enjoys working on all kinds of projects, but especially likes difficult projects with a lot of moving parts work, such as the David Blaine, “Electrified!” event which had seven midi-controlled Tesla Coils shocking illusionist David Blaine with a million volts for three straight days on a custom-made truss structure, outside on Pier 54 in NYC. Shawn, much to his accountant’s benefit, works for a number of event production companies: CS Lighting, Stargroup Productions, Tinc Productions, Bernhard Link Theatrical, LDJ Productions, Production Glue, Prospect Lighting and Worldstage, just to name a few.

    When Shawn is not working, he is involved in his other loves: music, grilling, being outdoors, and, ideally, finding himself in the ocean.

 

Erica Stoltz

Sound Engineer

 

  • Erica’s Bio

    In all the years that I have been writing and playing music, as well as making my living as a live sound engineer, I have sought ways to bring my work into the community. Being a performer has benefited me greatly throughout my career facilitating performance. I am at ease with artists and can put them at ease and I understand the nervous energy of live performance. Being responsible for the sound of a concert involves a bit of nerves as well. One of the most valuable things I have learned and believe I can impart is how to troubleshoot with grace under pressure. When training even the most inexperienced people, if you treat them with respect let them ask questions and consider mistakes learning opportunities, student interest and self-confidence gets a boost. 
Joshua Young TAC Teacher

Playwright, Theater Producer, Production Designer, Media Designer

BFA Theatre || BFA Cinema Studies


  • Josh’s Bio

    As a writer Josh has had work developed or produced at: The HERE Arts Center (upcoming), Dixon Place, Naked Angels, Primary Stages, FringeNYC, MITF, and Planet Connections. His work has been supported by The 2015 Playwrights Horizons/ Kenyon Institute Playwriting Conference and the 2015 Dramatists Guild Conference. He’s a proud member of the Dramatists Guild as well as an IATSE technician and designer. As a designer his work can be seen in the MoMA film exhibition 100 Years of Post. He is a founding member of The Playwriting Collective, a playwright driven initiative designed to give voice to artists who’ve emerged from poverty.

    Josh began doing technical work for theater in 1999 when he moved to NYC. He’s worked as a lighting electrician and designer, a sound engineer and designer, a carpenter, a projectionist, and a computer programmer. He learned the ins and outs of tech as a logical and pragmatic means to find a reliable source of income while working in the arts. He also learned the technical trades to better facilitate his own theater making endeavors.


Past Collaborators

 

  • Mandy Berry, TAC Teacher

    ~Mandy Berry

    Steve Brady, TAC Teacher

    ~Steve Brady

    Carry Day, TAC Teacher

    great carrie pic crop

    Regan Dodson, TAC Teacher

    ~Regan Dodson

    Frank Gonzalez, TAC Teacher

    ~Frank Gonzalez

    Zachary Green

    zach

    Susanna Harris

    susanna profile pic

    Lucas Lackey

    Bio Pic

    Calvin Lai

    ~Calvin Lai

    Conor Loughran

    conor 4 my fave

    John Davidson Mulkey

    TAC teacher, Davidson Mulkey, working at the light board at the Metropolitan Opera

    Van Orilia, TAC Teacher
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    Mary Stazewski, TAC Teacher

    ~Mary Stazewski

    Matt Tatman, TAC Teacher

    ~Matt Tatman