A talent for art. A talent for working with children. A passion for sharing.We recruit exceptionally talented and enthusiastic Artists-in-Residence, who are committed to working with us for the entire school year, and who may instruct during or after school, weekends, evenings or in our Summer Camp.
Their art practice is deeply investigated: all have prior experience guiding children, and all know first hand that great Artists can change lives. Many of our Artists have their own young experiences of being inspired by someone particularly special, and that is inspiration for their own paths. Art is central to their lives.
Great interest in in SFArtsED and its long proven methods attract like minds. And hearts. We employ a rigorous interviewing process, including live demonstration classroom work. We also qualify through expectations of diverse artistic achievement and innovative approaches to their own creative process. Many of our artists are bilingual.
The artists we work with are as dedicated and devoted to our kids’ transformations as we are. And they are truly part of our artistic family.
M A S T E R A R T I S T B I O G R A P H I E S > 2 0 1 6 - 2 0 1 7
Alexis Arnold > Visual Arts, since 2011
Ms. Arnold is a San Francisco artist whose artwork explores the visual display of time, perception and natural history through the transformation of varied materials. Her work has been exhibited internationally, including the Aspen Art Museum, Napa Valley Museum, Whatcom Museum, Bergdorf Goodman, Southern Exposure, The Workshop Residence, The New York Hall of Science and the San Francisco Arts Commission. Her work is included in the collections of SFMOMA, the University of Pittsburgh, Virginia Commonwealth University and MediaMath, and has been reviewed in Hi-Fructose, Art Practical, San Francisco Chronicle, Wall Street Journal, BuzzFeed, boingboing, designboom and more. She holds an MFA in sculpture from the San Francisco Art Institute, as well as a BA in art from Kenyon College.
Ms. Arnold enjoys teaching students of all ages, from elementary school students to adults with varying levels of experience. She loves borrowing ideas or techniques from her own work, her artist community or artists she admires to inform lessons, feeling this helps create unique projects for students. In addition to teaching with SFArtsED, Ms. Arnold teaches through Leap…Imagination in Learning, and has previously taught at SFAI Public Education, Root Division, Head-Royce School, private classes, and more.
Agelio Batle > Visual Arts, since 1994
Rhonda Crane > Music, since 2005
Ms. Crane began singing professionally in 1989 and began touring with the a cappella group Street Sounds in 1991. She has shared the stage with artists such as Robert Cray, Joan Armatrading, Zap Mama, Chick Chorea, Al Green, Holly Near, Manhattan Transfer, Ladysmith Black Mombazo, Wynton Marsalis and many others in such places as Korea, Switzerland, France, Germany, Austria, and Belgium. Currently, Rhonda sings with newly formed band, Chelle and Friends. She is currently director of the Children's Ministry for the Edwin and Walter Hawkins Music & Arts National Conference and the Love Center Church. She is also a member of the Hawkins' Community in Praise Choir, which traveled to Japan as special guests in Music and Arts, Japan 2008. Ms. Crane’s vocal talents developed in the Baptist church, and she studied classical piano and viola through college, toured with the Lowell High School Orchestra in Japan and received the San Francisco Sun Reporter's Youth of the Year Award in her senior year of high school. While studying as a music/education major at San Jose State University, she sang in the opera Aida with Grace Bumbry and organized the Rhonda Hudson Singers. She began serving as a church pianist at age 16 at the historic Third Baptist Church in San Francisco and has continued playing in various venues throughout her career, including work as choral director and the Minister of Music of Greater True Light Baptist Church in Modesto, California. In addition to her performing, Ms. Crane does studio work, runs workshops and teaches piano and voice to school children in the San Francisco, Belmont and Oakland unified school sistricts, and she teaches gospel music to adults in the Marin Adult & Community Education program. She can also be found on the teaching rosters of Leap, Imagination in Learning, San Francisco Arts Education Project and Oakland Youth Chorus because she loves to teach children how to sing!
Danny Duncan > Theatrical Director/Dramaturge, since 1991
Mr. Duncan is a native San Franciscan who has worked in the Bay Area most of his life. As founder and Artistic Director of Duncan & Company, he toured the West Coast for seven years. Mr. Duncan's writing career began in 1969 with Uhuruh, which appeared Off Broadway in New York at the City Center Theatre. Since then, he has authored and produced eight original musicals including Billie’s Song—winner of six Bay Area Critic Awards, including Best Musical of 1982. He is also the recipient of the Bay Area Critics Circle Award for his choreography for Theatreworks production of RAISIN the musical in 1998 as well as the Dean Goodman Choice Award for outstanding achievement in theatre. For five years Mr. Duncan served as Artistic Director for the Mayor's Summer Youth Program (Bayview Hunter's Point) and for ten years with United Projects, an arts organization that trained young people in the performing arts. Mr. Duncan has written the librettos and song lyrics for eight of The Event of the Year performances, and three original musicals for the SFArtsED Players. And, he’s served as Director of this musical theater company since its inception. Mr. Duncan has a long association with the School of the Arts Alternative High School and has taught at the American Conservatory Theater. He is on the faculty of the Oakland School of the Arts as drama teacher and is Director of their main stage musical each year.
Marcus Dyson > Music, since 2005
Mr. Dyson has been teaching choruses since the age of twelve. He is the Minister of Music at Calvary Hill Community Church in San Francisco. Mr. Dyson has also served as Minister of Music at Monument of Love Fellowship in San Diego making musical appearances on BET, TBN with top recording artists including Andrae Crouch, Shirley Caesar, Dr. Bobby Jones, Destiny’s Child and Kelly Price. Mr. Dyson’s debut CD was released in August, 2007. As Minister of Music, Mr. Dyson started the first youth choir for True Hope COGIC in San Francisco. Additional experience includes teaching Chorus class at Eugene McAteer High School.
Natalie Greene > Dance and Musical Theater, since 2003
Ms. Greene is a performer, teacher and choreographer exploring both traditional and innovative combinations of dance and theater. She is Adjunct Faculty at the University of San Francisco, where she co-directs the Dance Generators with Amie Dowling. Ms. Greene also teaches through SFArtsED and ODC School, and has served as Dance Faculty at San Francisco State University. She has performed for Kim Epifano, Deborah Slater, Emily Keeler, Kelly Kemp, Leyya Tawil and Mary Armentrout. Ms. Greene’s choreography has been presented in Italy, Spain, New York, Arizona and Massachusetts. Her work has been presented locally at ODC Theater, the Garage, John Sims, Shotwell Studios, Dance Mission and the Sunshine Biscuit Factory. She also creates performances with youth, teens, seniors, incarcerated adults, college and university students. This work has been featured at the Eureka Theater, the de Young Museum, the Marsh, the Fromm Institute, inside of County Jail #8, the College of San Mateo and SF School of the Arts. Ms. Greene has worked with the SFArtsED Players since 2003, and continues to learn and grow through collaborating with Emily Keeler and Danny Duncan.
ODC School - www.odcschool.org
Alfie Macias > Music, since 2001
Mr. Macias has dedicated his music, dance and educational career to working in local communities and in particular, working with underserved youth and underserved communities (including low-income, POC, women and LGBTQ). He has may years' experience teaching for many community organizations throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. He has been committed to using drum and dance as an effective vehicle for social and political justice as well as musical activism, all while promoting cultural awareness and a healthy lifestyle. He has worked with local San Francisco Mission District Bateria/Bloco and youth organization Loco Bloco for over 12 years as a bateria/percussion director, instructor and performance/tour Ensemble member as well as Cuban salsa instructor/choreographer. In addition he was instrumental in creating and directing of the Loco Bloco Teen Ensemble Crew (T.E.C. ages 13-20), which produced the multimedia comedic satire musical performance stage plays Illusions, Livin’ Loco and School House Rock. Currently he is co-artistic director (2012 to present) of Sambaxé & Bateria Bloco and his all women’s percussion ensemble, Bateria Força Feminina, which were awarded the 2014 third-place and 2015 second-place Brazilian Contingent in the Carnaval SF Grand Parade as well as receiving the 2015 first-place Musical Contingent Award in the San Francisco Pride Parade for the Macy’s/Bloomingdales SF Pride contingent. He also has participated in International Youth Exchanges in Cuba and Guatemala, as well as national youth exchanges in New York, Boston, Los Angeles and throughout Northern California. He has also participated with Loco Bloco and the Windsor Bloco (Santa Rosa) in Native American Summits within California and the Southwest. In 2010 in collaboration with Youth Art Exchange and SFJAZZ he created two special projects: the annual Traditional Percussion/Ensemble Internship for high school students held every summer in San Francisco focusing on preserving the rich percussion and traditional ensemble history of the Bay-Area, and the DigiBeats digital music production/performance program. In 2011 he helped found the Annual SF Youth Art Summit hosted by Youth Art Exchange, servicing over 30 San Francisco Bay-Area youth dedicated organizations under one roof. In addition he produces International Music and Dance excursions with Sol-Axé Music and Dance Retreats in which he is a founder, Brazil 2010, 2011 and 2012, Mexico 2009, 2014 and 2015, Cuba 2016 and Costa Rica 2017.
Mr. Macias has been an accompanist for the Rhythm & Motion Dance Program since 1994. Accompanying for Rhonda Stagnaro, Banche Brown, Mabiba Baegne, Rosangela Silvestre, Tania Santiago, Halifu Osumare, Paco Gomez, Ramon Ramos Alayo, and Raffaella Falchi.
Tiersa Nureyev > Fashion Design, since 2006
Ms. Nureyev's body of work resides in the intersection between art, design and craft. Her entry point into these disciplines is typically textile-based, materials driven, hands-on and coupled with an emphasis on artistic inquiry and collaboration. She is interested in the how and why when making work. She applies this thinking to three distinct yet related fields: costume/visual design, textile/fashion product design and art/design education.
Ms. Nureyev has costumed for film, musical theatre, dance and performance art and has worked with fellow artists to create fiber-based elements, structures and garments for gallery projects and set design. She is the co-founder of collaborative design studio Stella Fluorescent, which creates fashion collections emerging from partnerships with Bay Area designers and artists. Stella Fluorescent works with natural dyers, wood artisans, metal smiths and painters to create sustainably designed collections that are sold in fashion boutiques and design stores.
Ms. Nureyev sits on the SFArtsED Board of Directors as the Artist Representative. She is an active teaching artist (via SFArtsED) within the San Francisco School District, leads summer programs with youth exploring the nature of fashion as identity and collaborates with artists residing in San Quentin Prison.
Richard Olsen > Visual Arts, since 1993
Mr. Olsen is an artist, writer and art educator. He was the head of the art department at Gateway High School and taught art education at the San Francisco Art Institute. Mr. Olsen has curated many shows with SFArtsED including at Rena Bransten Gallery, Southern Exposure Gallery, the SF Arts Commission Gallery and the SF Museum of Modern Art. Most recently, Mr. Olsen curated the wildly successful INTERNATIONAL ORANGE: The Bridge Re-imagined at the Mills Building and in 75 "bridge" galleries around San Francisco. At SFArtsED, his students’ work has won a number of awards including the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum’s “Best of Design” award with a subsequent exhibition at the Corcoran Gallery in Washington, D.C. He has lectured on art and education at UC Berkeley, SF State, the College of Notre Dame, the SF Museum of Modern Art and other institutions. He has also taught in public and private settings, including children deemed “severely emotionally disturbed.” Mr. Olsen received his BFA and MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute.
Wendy Robushi > Visual Arts, since 2001
Born in Connecticut, Ms. Robushi relocated to California in 1985 and received her MFA from UC Berkeley in 1989. She holds a BS in art education and has a minor degree in the ceramic arts. Working in oil, wax, cut paper and acrylic, her current artwork explores the many facets of the mandala. In 2005, Ms. Robushi was one of 130 artists chosen to participate in Hearts in San Francisco, and her work is included in many private and public collections. A prolific muralist, Ms. Robushi was a guiding force behind numerous murals funded by the Neighborhood Beautification Fund and designed and painted by artists and students in San Francisco’s Bayview Hunters Point. Since 1989 she has worked out of her San Francisco studio at Hunters Point Shipyard, an artists’ colony of more than 250 artists. She has served as a board member of The Shipyard Trust for the Arts and served as Director of the Hunters Point Shipyard Spring Open Studio for four years. As a dedicated arts educator for over 30 years, Ms. Robushi has served as artist-in-residence in over a dozen San Francisco schools, teaching drawing, painting, printmaking and a variety of art media and techniques to thousands of young artists in elementary, middle school, language immersion and special education programs.
Trish Tillman > Theater, since 2005
Ms. Tillman served as the director of artistic learning at California Shakespeare Theater for five years. She has been a working actor, improvisor and theater arts teacher for 25 years and holds a Masters in Dramatic Performance and Teaching Theater from Antioch University and a BS in Performance Studies from Northwestern University. She has created teaching artist training programs for both classroom teachers and college education students, brought the world of Shakespeare to literally thousands of children through productions and classes, founded two improvisational theater companies in San Francisco and is currently on staff and in the ensemble of Un-Scripted Theater.
A R T I S T B I O G R A P H I E S > 2 0 1 6 - 2 0 1 7
Christine Armand > Theater, since 2013
Ms. Armand has been teaching drama to elementary students for more than 15 years. She is a trained theatrical performer, published playwright and dynamic instructor, who is dedicated to the arts as a teaching tool. She has a master’s degree in theater from San Francisco State University and has run her own week-long Creative Storytelling camps. She has worked at many diverse schools in the Bay Area, guiding students to wholeheartedly express themselves. A well-rounded theatrical artist herself, Ms. Armand has performed in many Bay Area theatrical shows and has travelled to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where she starred in an original play. She is most proud of her own troupe, The PrimaMommas, where she produces and performs in a popular play that she also co-wrote called “Stretchmarks: Growing Into Motherhood.” The play has enjoyed many sold-out shows in the Bay Area, and most recently had it’s East Coast debut.
Bidalia Albanese > Dance/Musical Theater, since 2015
Born and raised in New York Ms. Albanese is a professional actor, director, choreographer and producer. She has trained at The School of American Ballet (NYC), The High School of Performing Arts NYC and graduated from the Guildford School of Acting in England. Her directing credits include many musicals and plays. Some of her favorites include Beauty and the Beast, Annie, The Jungle Book, 101 Dalmatians, Private Wars and The Unspeakable Act which premiered at the New York Fringe Festival. Her choreography has been seen at England, Fullerton College, Wagner College, The Hell Festival in NYC. and all around the Bay Area. She has performed in the West End, off off Broadway and on a national tour. In the last couple of years she has performed with Theatre Rhino, East Bay Children’s Theatre and Shopping the musical. When she is not performing, she is directing or choreographing and teaching. Ms. Albanese is also a proud mom to her creative son Monterey and wife to Steven Hess also a professional actor and director of 142 Throckmorton's Marin Youth Performer.
Jeanette Au > Visual Arts, since 2010
Ms. Au was raised in New York and trained in visual arts at Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music and Art and the Performing Arts also known as the Fame school. She holds a BFA in interdisciplinary studies from the San Francisco Art Institute and a MFA in knitwear design from the Academy of Art University. She has presented her knitwear collection in Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week and has taught BFA fashion courses at Academy of Art University and has taught textile arts in the Bay Area in private and public venues. Ms. Au’s textile work blurs and transgresses the boundaries between fashion and art, exploring cross-cultural dialogues and liminal space. As an educator she shares inspiration, process and an exploration of material and techniques to discover and to delight in the unexpected.
David Brown > Musical Theater, since 2013
A Bay Area native, Mr. Brown has more than eight years of music directing experience, having previously worked with Throckmorton Youth Performers, Menlo School, Palo Alto Children's Theater, Performing Arts Academy of Marin, Young People's Teen Musical Theater Company and Berkeley Playhouse. Favorite past music directing credits include Mr. Irresistible (Alcazar Theater, San Francisco), Sleeping Cutie: A Fractured Fairy Tale (PlayGround, San Francisco) and Spamalot (6th Street Playhouse, Santa Rosa). He is also a composer and is currently writing music inspired by the songs of Dolly Parton for a new production of Blood Wedding premiering this fall (Bigger Than a Breadbox Co., San Francisco). He is a graduate of Brown University, where he received the Weston Award in Music for piano performance.
Araya Boonbandansook > Visual Arts, since 2016
Born and raised in Bangkok, Thailand, Ms. Boonbandansook moved to Providence, Rhode Island to pursue a BFA in painting at the Rhode Island School of Design. At R.I.S.D. she developed an interest in the intersection between art and craft. Her painting practice involves experimenting with paint, textiles and fibers. Her artwork explores her relationship to tradition in connection with her cross-cultural upbringing. She is also an educator who shares inspiration, exploration of material and technique to discover new ways of approaching the traditional painting and drawing medium.
Holly Burnett > Music, since 2012
Ms. Burnett is a native of St. Louis, Missouri. She graduated from Union University in Jackson, Tennessee, in 2005 with a B.M. in Music Education. She has been teaching music in the Bay Area since 2006 with various organizations such as the Oakland Youth Chorus, Oakland Public Conservatory of Music and Music in Schools Today (MuST). She is an active member of the East Bay alumnae chapter of Sigma Alpha Iota, a professional music fraternity that promotes and supports music education and organizations in the community. In her free time she enjoys dancing and performing with local groups Cunamacue Afro-Peruvian Dance Ensemble and Grupo Experimental Nago.
Clint Calimlim > Dance, since 2007
Mr. Calimlim is trained in Hip Hop, Jazz and Ballet. He has performed with various Bay Area Hip Hop Dance Companies that include Culture Shock, Funkanometry SF, Khaotic, Mind Over Matter and Xplicit. He has choreographed and performed with recording artists Deborah Cox, Jocelyn Enriquez, Ryan Duarte and Angelina. Mr. Calimlim served on the judging panel for the Bay Area Dance Quake and was a member of the audition panel for the 2007 San Francisco Hip Hop Dancefest. He is the Hip Hop Program Director at Spark of Creation Studio and he teaches at Dance Mission in San Francisco. Mr. Calimlim has also taught at the Metronome Dance Center and been a Hip Hop instructor for the San Francisco Ballet’s Outreach Program. And he’s served as the Head and Artistic Director of the Hip Hop Department at Westlake School for the Performing Arts.
Michelle Drexler > Theater, since 2016
Ms. Drexler is a San Francisco native and is a direct product of the public arts education provided by Lowell High School's drama program and by Rec and Park's Young People's Teen Musical Theater Company (YPTMTC). She works as a teaching artist with Berkeley Playhouse and San Francisco Shakespeare Company. As an actor, she has worked regionally and with local companies including Theatreworks, San Francisco Playhouse, Shotgun Players, San Francisco Shakespeare Festival, Cutting Ball Theater and Berkeley Playhouse.
Zoe Farmer > Ceramics, since 2014
Before moving to the Bay Area in 2012 Ms. Farmer spent 12 years teaching at a diverse, coed, public school in London, UK. Ms. Farmer’s undergraduate degree is in sculpture, and she recently completed her MFA at California College of the Arts in fine sculpture. She has had an active studio practice sine 2007 had has show work in solo and group shows in London and San Francisco. Her art practice is interdisciplinary and she works with a wide range of materials in both conventional and unconventional ways. She embraces a variety of processes and enjoys discovering the potential of materials through experimentation and play. The material reactions that become a starting point for a new body of work are those that convey transformation, transience and throw up unforeseen surprises. A scuba diver with a life-long interest and investment in marine biology and a strong belief in our connection to the ocean, Ms. Farmer’s work seeks to explore the instability created when social constructs influence the fabrication of scientific truth. The realities of diversity found in the ocean environment challenge scientific truths and pop-cultural attitudes toward the animal kingdom. The social constructions of our society become conspicuous and limiting against the adaptable, fluid bodies of the animals and organisms that she observes.
Erin Gentry > SFArtsED Players, since 2010
Ms. Gentry studied at the University of San Francisco, graduating with a BA in performing arts and social justice with a dance emphasis. A longtime musical theater lover, she is a choreographer, performer and collaborator, and has appeared onstage from a young age. Favorite past shows include Cabaret, Chicago, Urinetown! The Musical, Hairspray, and most recently her role as Cassie in A Chorus Line. During her time at USF, Ms. Gentry staged such musicals as Songs for a New World and Reefer Madness and worked with incarcerated men in the Resolve to Stop The Violence Program, before joining the SFArtsED family as an instructor for the youth summer camp Broadway Bound and co-choreographer for the SFArtsED Players. She also greatly enjoys her in-school musical theater residencies throughout the year. With training in classical Broadway styles of dance, including tap and jazz, and interests in contemporary styles, Ms. Gentry's variety of interests are all a part of her diverse approach to teaching.
Jackie Kappes > Theater, since 2016
Ms. Kappes is an educator, creator, director, deviser and playwright, originally from Augusta, Georgia. She has had the privilege of teaching drama to young artists from ages 3-18 at Seattle Children’s Theatre, Lexington Children’s Theatre, Omaha Theater Company, 7 Stages International Theatre, Chattanooga Theatre Centre, Ensemble Theatre of Chattanooga, StageWrite and Bay Area Children’s Theatre. She particularly loves exploring the arts of puppetry and playwriting with young people. She received her Bachelor of Science in Education of Theatre and is currently pursuing her Masters in Counseling Psychology of Drama Therapy at the California Institute of Integral Studies. She looks forward to the beautiful works of art she and her students will create together here in the Bay Area.
Esmeralda Kundanis-Grow > Dance, since 2011
Ms. Kundanis-Grow is a Bay Area-based choreographer, performer and dance teacher. She has presented her choreography at TriskelionArts in Brooklyn, BAMPFA, Laney College Theater, ODC, Dance Mission Theatre, KS-Arts and The Garage. She performs and choreographs for Oakland-based dance company Mix'd Ingrdnts and also teaches with Brisbane Dance Workshop and ODC. As an educator, she believes in teaching dance from a place of activism and personal empowerment, creating pathways for students to step into leadership and full creative expansion.
G. Scott Lacy > Musical Theater, since 2014
Mr. Lacy has musical directed over 150 productions working with such theatre companies as the Tony Award-winning La Jolla Playhouse, the award-winning Lamb’s Players Theatre, the Musical Theatre Guild of Los Angeles, Diversionary Theatre, New Conservatory Theatre Center, Diablo Theatre Company, 42nd Street Moon, San Diego Repertory Theatre, San Diego Opera, North Coast Repertory Theatre, the Emmy Award-winning Malashock Dance Company and many others. Mr. Lacy was honored with the 2009 Bay Area Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Musical Direction for his work on Dames At Sea at NCTC. Mr. Lacy has had the honor of working with some of the theater’s finest directors including Des McAnuff, Michael Greif, Neel Keller, Peter Schneider, Les Waters and Regina Taylor. Mr. Lacy is also a successful vocal coach whose clients include Tony, Emmy, Grammy and Golden Globe Award winning performers. His students have attended such prestigious universities as NYU, Harvard, Carnegie Melon, North Carolina School of the Arts, UCSD, UCLA, and Sarah Lawrence. Also a celebrated cabaret performer, Mr. Lacy is the creator and founding partner of Society Cabaret in San Francisco.
Kyle Limin > Dance, since 2013
Mr. Limin received his BA in dance from San Francisco State University. He has been a dancer and contributing choreographer to several Bay Area groups including FunkBeyond Control, Mind Over Matter and Project Em. He is a principal dancer with Funkanometry SF, teaches for Brisbane Dance Workshop and workshops throughout the country.
Sydney Lozer > Musical Theater, since 2013
Ms. Lozier is a Bay Area dancer and teacher who has found so much joy in working with the Players. She is a recent graduate of the Performing Arts and Social Justice program at University of San Francisco and is currently pursuing her Masters of Arts in Education at the same institution. With more than 17 years of technical training (jazz, tap, ballet, modern), she has had the opportunity to perform under choreographers such as Eli Nelson, Jenny Mcallister, Natalie Greene, Amie Dowling and Brenton Cheng. Recent works include an ensemble role in South of Market: The Musical, ODC Pilot with dance collective Hers and Hers and presentation of solo work Exploration of the Face at the Theater of Yugen Noh.
Katie Mallooly > Dance, since 2016
Katie Malooly has been dancing since she was 6 years old. She started taking classes in tap, jazz, contemporary, hip hop and ballet. At 17, she began teaching classes and by 18 was dancing professionally. She has performed and choreographed for many Bay Area dance companies and recording artists including Loose Change, Felonious and L10. Katie enjoys teaching students of all ages and levels and has been teaching dance classes all over the bay area for over 15 years.
Laura Marsh > Dance, since 2005
Ms. Marsh hails from Memphis, Tennessee, where she received a BFA in Dance and Theatre from University Of Memphis in 1992. After graduating, she performed and choreographed with Project: Motion, later moving on to become co-artistic director of the company. In 1997 she was awarded first prize in Tennessee Association Of Dance’s annual choreography competition. She has taught creative dance, modern and ballet to students from age 3 through adult. Since her arrival in the Bay Area in 1998 she has performed with Megan Nicely and Company, Right Brain Performance Lab, Nina Galin Music and Dance, and Steamroller. Ms. Marsh has taught dance at Synergy School, ODC, Rhythm and Motion, and Beresford Recreation Center in San Mateo. Currently Ms. Marsh teaches children's dance classes at Brisbane Dance Workshop, ODC, San Mateo Parks and Recreation and Burlingame Parks and Recreation.
Tom Mayock > Dance, since 2010
Mr. Mayock was a performing artist with El Teatro Danza Contemporanea De El Salvador (modern, indigenous and classical dance), attended Cornish College of the Arts and has performed with ballet, jazz and modern companies, for corporate industrials and for film. His choreography for children has been televised on Evening Magazine, he has choreographed three annual musicals, which have been performed by a nationally recognized private high school, and he is the co-artistic director of Sun Valley Elementary School’s World Dance Festival (five years), and The Classroom Connections Festival (four years). As a teaching artist he is contracted to SFArtsED, with past relationships with Young Imaginations, Youth in Arts and Let’s All Dance. With his clients, Mr. Mayock carries the dance arts to thousands of children annually. Through his work with these agencies he has had extensive work developing standards-based curriculum. He has performed, choreographed and taught professionally in Seattle, Portland, Las Vegas, Alaska, the Bay Area and Washington, D.C.
Melinda Neal-Cofresi > Dance, since 2008
Ms. Neal-Cofresi is a BFA candidate in dance at Saint Mary’s College. She trained at the Oakland Ballet Academy under Ronn Guidi and studied locally at Shawl Anderson and the San Francisco Dance Center. She is certified to teach Ballet by the Dance Masters of America, and has performed with Simply Pasquale, Napoles Ballet Theatre, California Ballet, Udance Electra, New Trails Dance Theatre, Oakland Ballet Academy and Solano Civic Ballet. Ms Neal-Cofresi is the Artistic Director and Choreographer for Halal Ballet Theatre, a non-profit youth ballet company and also teaches for Dance Network.
Jeff Raz > Theater, SFArtsED Advisory Board, since 1991
Mr. Raz explores the intersection of circus, theater and music from many different angles - as a clown, an actor, a teacher, a director and a playwright. His 35-year career has taken him from remote Alaskan villages to Broadway, across the continental United States and to Europe, Japan and China. In 2000, he founded The Clown Conservatory, the only comprehensive professional clown training program in the United States, and he directed the program until 2010. Mr. Raz is now the Bay Area casting partner for Cirque du Soleil, the artistic director of the Medical Clown Project and a director with the global consulting firm Stand & Deliver. A graduate of the Dell'Arte International, Mr. Raz has performed with Cirque du Soleil, The Pickle Circus, Vaudeville Nouveau and Make*A*Circus and in such theaters as Berkeley Repertory Theatre, The Goodman Theater in Chicago, Marin Theater Company, The Kennedy Center, TheatreWorks of Palo Alto, The San Francisco and Marin Shakespeare Festivals and Lincoln Center Theater in New York. In 2007, he spent toured the U.S. as the lead character in Cirque du Soleil's Corteo. He reprised his role, in Japanese, in Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka in 2009 and 2010.
Tom Shaw> Musical Theater, since 2007
Mr. Shaw is a singer-pianist with extensive musical theater experience as a music director, accompanist and actor. He has also composed music and acted for television and film. His jazz trio, the Tom Shaw Trio, performs throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and is often sought out to accompany other vocalists, cabaret performances, musical theater productions and shows, and can be seen regularly performing in San Francisco at Martuni's among other venues.
Alex Stein > Musical Theater, since 2012
Mr. Stein is a native of the San Francisco Bay Area, where he works as a composer, performer and educator. In addition to his work with SFArtsED, he works as composer with the San Francisco Opera's ARIA Network, helping elementary school classes to create original mini-operas. Mr. Stein holds a Master's Degree in composition from the Mannes College of Music, where he studied with David Loeb. While at Mannes, he was a winner of the 2008 Jean Schneider Goberman composition competition, the Martinu prize for orchestral composition, and the Composer-in-Residence Chamber Ensemble commission. His works have been premiered at the Bowdoin International Music Festival, SUNY Stony Brook, and by Choral Chameleon and the Mimesis Ensemble. He is currently working on his first opera.
Samantha Stone > Dance, since 2011
Ms. Stone received her BFA in Dance from the University of Michigan. Upon graduating, she has continued her dance studies both outside of the US in Brazil, Mexico and Europe as well as in the Bay Area, focusing her studies primarily toward Axis Syllabus Dance. Most recently, she participated at the Luna Dance Institute, where she further trained in the field of children's dance education. She has had the pleasure of working with choreographers Kathleen Hermsdorf, Bianca Cabrera, Rosemary Hannon, Ashley Trottier, Aura Fischbeck and Leyya Tawil. Ms. Stone is a co-founder of Viv dance company, and her own work has been shown in several local theaters, though she prefers enchanting the homes, galleries and shops around her with movement and design. She engages in teaching, choreographing and performing on both sides of the San Francisco Bay, always pushing for arts awareness and opportunity for all.
Josephine Taylor > Visual Art, since 2016
Ms. Taylor studied religion and East Indian languages as an undergraduate at the University of Colorado before pursuing a graduate degree in fine art at the San Francisco Art Institute. Ms. Taylor creates narrative drawings on enormous sheets of paper using colored inks, brushes and airbrush. Her work primarily examines emotional and physical experiences of childhood and adolescence. She was the recipient of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art SECA Award, was featured in Bay Area Now at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and was included in the California Biennial at the Orange County Museum of Art in 2004. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally at the Nordic Watercolor Museum in Sweden in 2008. Her work is in the permanent collections of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, 21c Museum in Cincinnati, Ohio, and the Museum of Modern Art, New York. She lives and works in San Francisco and has shown with Catharine Clark Gallery since 2003. Her most recent show at Catharine Clark Gallery was titled "Teenagers are Beautiful." In addition to her studio practice, Ms. Taylor has taught undergraduate and graduate courses in drawing, painting, and studio critique at UC Berkeley, Stanford University, the San Francisco Art Institute and the California College of the Arts since 2003. She is currently teaching drawing at Stanford University.
Barbara Vanderbeck > Visual Arts, since 2015
Ms. Vanderbeck is a San Francisco-based artist who remembers being smitten with clay from a very early age. She also creates vibrant mixed-media paintings. Her MA in art education was received from Northern Arizona University. She is dedicated to her own studio practice and consistently participates in exhibits through out the Bay Area. She brings a wealth of experience teaching at all levels in various institutions. Passionate about the creative process, she delights in sharing her knowledge and enthusiasm with her students.
Jesus Zamarron > Visual Arts, since 2016
Mr. Zamarron has over ten years experience teaching art in after-school programs at Holy Name School and Mission Dolores Academy. He graduated with an MA in Art Education from The Academy of Art University, in 2013, and holds a BFA from Complutense University in Madrid, and a Pedagogical Adaptation Certificate (CAP) from University of Almeria, Spain.
A R T I S T S - I N - R E S I D E N C E I N M E M O R I A M
Michael Koob > Dance
Mr. Koob was the Administrator Director of SFArtsED Summer. He trained in Wigman technique under Hellmut Gottschild at Temple University in Philadelphia. He toured the Eastern United States and Europe with ZeroMoving Dance Company and choreographed and performed with Six Thumbs Dance Theater in San Francisco. He served as the artistic of TRANSIT and taught extensively throughout the Bay Area and was on the faculty of ODC/SF. In 2002 the Mayor’s Department of Children, Youth and Their Families honored him as a “Teacher of the Year” during the Celebration of the Young Child Week.
Dan Kryston > Musical Theater Technical Design
Mr. Kryston was the head of the Musical Theater and Technology departments at Ruth Asawa San Francisco School of the Arts. Mr. Kryston received his degrees in Theatre Directing and Design from Virginia Commonwealth University and Regis University. He worked as artistic director for the Berlitz Gallery Theatre in Phoenix, Arizona, and has been an active force in San Francisco’s cabaret scene.
A L U M N I A R T I S T S - I N - R E S I D E N C E
Caroline Alexander > Dance, since 2014
Ms. Alexander was born and raised in San Francisco where she received ballet training at the San Francisco Ballet School and graduated with a degree in Theater, Dance and Performance Studies from UC Berkeley. She is an active dancer, performer and teacher in the Bay Area. She has worked/performed with the Joe Goode Performance Group, Katie Faulkner, Fog Beast, M.O.C., Kim Epifano/Epiphany Productions, Liz Tenuto, to name a few. She is also currently teaching elementary though middle school students at various schools and programs in San Francisco and the East Bay.
Liz Andrews > Visual Arts, 2012
Originally from Santa Cruz Ca, Ms. Andrews received her teaching credential in art education from San Francisco State University. She holds a BA in studio art from the University of California Santa Cruz and has exhibited work in several small galleries in Santa Cruz, including the Women’s Center at UCSC. She is a painter working in acrylics and mixed media. As an art educator, Ms. Andrews says her goal is to help students tell their own stories and ask questions so students develop their cognitive and critical thinking skills for investigating and understanding the world around them.
Aileen Barr > Visual Arts, since 2003
Ms. Barr has been a teaching artist for the past 15 years. She began facilitating art workshops in Ireland in the early 1990’s, working with schools and community groups. Since moving to San Francisco she has continued to combine teaching and her own studio practice. In her own art, Ms. Barr creates large-scale public art works using hand made tile and mosaic.
Teaching has always formed an important part of her art practice and she regularly consults and provides hand on opportunities with communities when doing public artworks. As a teaching artist she believes that the skill of teaching is about facilitating learning. Ms. Barr’s Artists-In-Residence aim is to foster independent thinking, enhance problem solving and encourage a belief that great things can be achieved.
Terry Gamba Baruti > Dance, since 2012
Mr. Baruti began teaching Capoeira for youth at the Western Addition Cultural Center in San Francisco and developed the largest and most advanced group of children in the United States. In 1988, he founded Adigun Sipho Capoeira group and began training in Capoeira Angola, a form more rooted in the traditions of the Congo-Angola Bantu Culture, the origins of the N'golo, the African father of Capoeira. Mr. Baruti learned Kongolese drumming under Grand Master Sandor Diabankouezi, director of the Kongolese National Dance Troupe and joined Les Bantus Sissa Kongo dance troupe in 1991. Mr. Baruti has taught Capoeria Angola, Adigun Sipho Capoeira, African Stick dance and Kongolese drumming around San Francisco and the Bay Area. In 1995 he collaborated with Lorraine Bowser to develop an appreciation for dance on a traditional, cultural and educational level through Adigun Sipho and Bana Ya Kongo, the arts of the Congo. In 1998, Mr. Baruti became an honorary professor at Mills College, where he teaches Kongolese drumming in the Music Department.
Barbara Beccio > Costume Design, 2003-2011
Actively teaching since 1988, Ms. Beccio is also an award-winning doll designer who brings her inventive and inquisitive spirit to her classes and workshops in costuming, doll and mask-making and sculpture. She brings her knowledge of clothing construction and textiles, as well as many costuming techniques, to the classes that she teaches at The Academy of Art University in San Francisco as well as classes that she taught at The Art Institute of California-San Francisco as well as at Stonemountain and Daughter Fabrics in Berkeley. Having taught classes from pre-school to college as well as adult classes, she is able to bring versatility and creativity to a wide range of education situations.
Ms. Beccio has created costumes for over 70 productions in theater, opera and dance, for institutions including the Juilliard School, the Emelin Theatre and Princeton University. A deeply knowledgeable costume designer with extensive training in all aspects of the craft, she not only designed but also draped, patterned and constructed costumes for productions ranging from Sondheim's Into the Woods (Skylight Opera Theatre, 1993) to Molière's Misanthrope (York Theatre Company, 1991). S he was also assistant designer on "Where in Time is Carmen Sandiego." Her work has won many awards, including the Seidman Award for Excellence in Design.
Ray Beldner > Visual Arts, since 2010
Born in San Francisco, Mr. Beldner received a BFA from the San Francisco Art Institute and an MFA from Mills College in Oakland, California. He has participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions both nationally and internationally and his work can be found in many public and private collections including the Federal Reserve Board, Washington D.C., the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, Arizona, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, the Oakland Museum of California and the San Jose Museum of Art.
Mr. Beldner is a 1996 recipient of a California Arts Council Fellowship in New Genres. He was also a 1997 recipient of a Creative Work Fund Grant from the Haas Foundation, and a Potrero Nuevo environmental art grant for the GARDEN Project, which he led with SFArtsED at Francisco Middle School. He has taught sculpture and interdisciplinary studies at the San Francisco Art Institute and the California College of the Arts and is currently an Assistant Professor of Art at Saint Mary's College in Moraga, CA. His work has been reviewed in publications including Arte, Art on Paper, Wired, Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, The Village Voice, International Herald Tribune, and The New York Times.
Most recently, his work has been seen in Living With Duchamp, Tang Museum, Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY, Argent et Valeur, Le Dernier Tabou, Exposition Nationale Suisse, Biel-Bienne, Switzerland and in the traveling exhibition, Illegal Art: Freedom of Expression in the Corporate Age. Mr. Beldner recently had a solo exhibition of his money-related artwork at Caren Golden Fine Art in New York.
Rhonda Benin > Music, since 1999
Ms. Benin's resumé includes performances at SF Jazz Festival, Yoshi’s, the Healdsburg Jazz Festival, the Calistoga Jazz Festival. During the summer of 2012, she was a featured vocalist at the prestigious JZ Club in Hangzhou, China, spending three months performing before SRO crowds.
She is also a member of The ranny-nominated Linda Tillery and The Cultural Heritage and has recorded and toured extensively with the group as well as with Taj Mahal, Wilson Pickett, Richie Havens, Odetta. Al Green, Keb Mo, Santana, Patti Austin, Janis Ian, Jackson Browne, Hugh Masekela & Sweet Honey in the Rock. In 2006 Ms. Benin produced her first solo CD, A Matter of the Heart, a mix of jazz, blues and soul.
She is on the teaching staff of Jam Camp West, Healdsburg Jazz Festival, Operation Jazz Band, Girl Blues and Jazz Camp, Cal Performances. In addition, she conducts school assemblies and workshops, “The Voice, The Hands The Feet,” “Twist and Shout” and “Love Letters Make Me Misty Blue.”
Kim Bennett > Visual Arts, since 2013
Ms. Bennett is an artist who believes in teaching as a fun energy transfer ceremony. She has a BFA from the Cooper Union and an MFA from California College of the Arts. She leads private drawing workshops and has taught at Bay School of San Francisco, City College Continuing Education and SFArtsED Summer. She has exhibited her work internationally, and her two-person show (with Amelia Konow) Where We End and the Ether Begins showed at Stephen Wirtz Gallery in San Francisco. She makes work with thread, metal, spraypaint, poems and whatever else comes to hand. She enjoys collaborating with her son. She is a recipient of the Toby Devan Lewis Fellowship.
Keta Bill > Music, 2001-2012
Ms. Bill received her BA in theater and music from Western Illinois University. A performer and studio vocalist here in the Bay Area for over 30 years, with bands Zasu Pitts Memorial Orchestra, Big Bang Beat and shows like Teatro Zinzanni, she continues to record for commercials, film and various CD projects. She teaches singing and chorus for Brisbane Dance Workshop, ODC and Spindrift School of Performing Arts as well as private piano and guitar lessons. She has worked in early childhood music and movement for 19 years and teaches at various preschools and for Blue Bear School.
Libby Black > Visual Arts, 2000-2009
Ms. Black was born in Toledo, Ohio on June 19th, 1976. She received a BFA in Painting from the Cleveland Institute of Art in 1999 and an MFA in Painting from the California College of the Arts in 2001. Her work has been exhibited at Yerba Beuna Center for the Arts (San Francisco), Orange County Museum of Art (Newport Beach), Jersey City Museum (Jersey City), and numerous galleries in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Libby has been an artist in residence at Headlands Center for the Arts and Montalvo Arts Center. Libby’s work has been reviewed in Artforum, Art in America, ARTnews, Zink Magazine, Flash Art, and The New York Times. Libby is represented by Marx and Zavattero (formally Heather Marx Gallery) in San Francisco. Libby lives and works in Berkeley, California.
Jesse Bliss > Theater, 2010-2011
Ms. Bliss is the founder and artistic director of The Roots and Wings Project. She is also an actress, writer, director, producer, poetess and MC whose works have been produced and performed around the world. Ms. Bliss’ writings for the stage include Diamonds, performed at UCLA in collaboration with dance legend Rennie Harris; Roots and Wings, performed in New York and San Francisco; Between Fingertips, performed at Central Juvenile Hall and CASA 0101, TREE OF FIRE Reading @ Lincoln Heights Jail and an excerpt performance at Theatre of Note and performance appearances at the United Nations on International Women’s Day and the Edinburgh Festival. She has essayed leading roles at CASA 0101 in shows including Between Fingertips, You Don’t Know Me, Hoop Girls and Heart on a Wire, as well as hosted the CASA 0101 Poetry Slam. She has also performed in The Vagina Monologues and countless other theatrical productions with extensive work in radio and lead roles in independent film. Ms. Bliss is an arts education veteran, with extensive experience writing curriculum and teaching theater and creative writing to at-risk and incarcerated youth. She was awarded a Flourish Foundation grant for The Roots and Wings Project Theater Program in partnership with J.U.I.C.E. for youth coming out of juvenile hall.
Drew Boles > Music, 2006-2009
Born in Springfield, Missouri, Mr. Boles began classical piano study at the age of seven. From 1998-2002, Mr. Boles attended Emory University in Atlanta, GA. There, he helped create the honors program in composition, and was the first student to graduate with Honors (summa cum laude) in Music Composition. From 2003-2005, Mr. Boles attended the University of California, San Diego, where he completed his master's degree in music composition.
Mr. Boles currently lives in San Francisco where he teaches music, composes, and performs. He has recently completed the score for the film, Dear Beverly, a collaboration with longtime friend and filmmaker Melanie Mascioli. Other projects include the Mercurial Gay Beings' BaMeThi, a large-scale musical/performative/theatrical work in a summer 2006 premiere, and a new songwriting/recording project centered around a crunchy upright piano.
Kelley Bowker > Dance, 2009-2011
Ms. Bowker is a freelance dancer/choreographer in the Bay Area. As well as creating her own work she currently dances with Gretchen Garnett and Dancers and Ishika Seth. She received her BFA in Dance from the University of Michigan and spent a year as an apprentice with the Liz Lerman Dance Exchange before relocating west. Ms. Bowker first began teaching as a gymnastics coach during college and has continued ever since, recently expanding her repertoire with her pilates certification. She likes to infuse her dance teaching with all the other movement modalities she works in to challenge students. Teaching primarily modern dance Ms. Bowker likes to bring elements of composition into her class to allow students to find their own voice through movement.
Brandon Brack > Vocal Music, 2012-2013
Mr. Brack has his BA in Vocal Performance from University of Wisconsin-Madison, his MA in both choral conducting and vocal performance from University of Michigan, and his Doctor of Music Arts from USC. He currently serves as Interim Music Director for the San Francisco Girls Chorus. He has had extensive choral conducting experience in collegiate and church settings and has been a performing vocalist with many significant groups including New World Symphony under the baton of Michael Tilson–Thomas and Chanticleer—An Orchestra of Voices for whom he also served as outreach coordinator to numerous middle schools.
Jason Brown (Tata Salah Kongo) > Music, 2007-2014
Mr. Brown studied toward his Master of Arts in English at the University of Vermont. He studied abroad at the University of Nairobi in Kenya, East Africa. Mr. Brown is a guest accompanist for West African Dance classes at ODC/SF, City Dance and the Malonga Casquerland Performing Arts Center. He was the Musical Director of Ayoluwa African Dance Company and he has accompanied Modern and traditional West African dance classes at Spelman College and various African Dance Companies in Buffalo, New York. He has worked with the Jeh Kelu African Dance Company and been a Rhythm Artist with the Living Word Project. Some of the local agencies that Mr. Brown has worked with are: the City and County of San Francisco’s Human Services Agency, San Francisco Unified School District, Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Bayview Hunter’s Point YMCA, Street Beats, Coalition on Homelessness and San Francisco Network Ministries. Mr. Brown has also taught Elementary School in Buffalo, New York.
Michael Cappelli > Theater, 2008-2009
Mr. Cappelli received his MA in Theatre Education from Emerson College. He is an actor with over 15 years experience working in regional and local theatres, and has also written and directed several plays including Possessions and Slowdance. Mr. Cappelli has performed at venues that include the NewGate Theatre, Perishable Theatre, Coyote Theatre, Theatrezone, Boston Instant Fringe Festival, Boston Theatrics!, Wilde Stage and Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre. He has taught at the Aquarium of the Pacific, New York Film Academy and P.S. Arts in Southern California.
Caroline Charuk > Visual Arts, since 2013
Ms. Charuk is a visual artist who works primarily in sculpture, textiles and printmaking. She began developing her teaching philosophy at a Waldorf School in Flagstaff, Arizona. There, students were immersed in observing and making in a way that resonated with her own artistic processes. Since then, she has taught painting, sewing, ceramics and gardening at the de Young Museum, the Museum of Northern Arizona and California College of the Arts. She earned her MFA from California College of the Arts in textiles and sculpture, and her BFA from the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University.
Holly Coley > Visual Arts, since 2015
Ms. Coley was born in Bellflower, California. She graduated with her BFA from San Francisco State University after spending two years at the San Francisco Art Institute. She works in ceramics, painting, drawing and mixed media. As an emerging artist, Coley has exhibited her work in San Francisco and New York. In addition to her work with SFArtsED in the schools, she is a teaching artist and ambassador for Root Division, a non-profit arts organization that places artists in public schools to provide art classes for underserved youth in the Bay Area.
Tom Comitta > Literary Arts, since 2012
Mr. Comitta is a poet and arts educator from West Chester, Pennsylvania. Since 2001, he has conducted workshops in Literary Arts with students ages 7-16 at YMCA Camp Lawrence (Meredith, New Hampshire), Inglés Abre Puertas (Santiago, Chile) and the San Francisco Arts Education Project. His approach to literary arts emphasizes the visual and musical qualities of language, offering students a playful, multimedia accompaniment to literacy education -- students not only write and speak, but draw, sing, install and collage language.
Mr. Comitta moved to the Bay Area in 2009 to complete his MFA in writing at California College of the Arts. Since then, he has edited a handful of literary journals, written art reviews, organized literary readings, co-founded a guerrilla theater company and currently runs a small press. He has performed his sound poetry at venues in the Bay Area and New York including the Berkeley Art Museum, the Contemporary Jewish Museum of San Francisco, SF Main Public Library and Jenkins Johnson Gallery, NYC. In 2013, Ugly Duckling Presse published his book O.
Robert J. Cowan > Musical Theater, 2008-2010
Originally from Anchorage, Alaska, Mr. Cowan holds a degree in music and philosophy from Gonzaga University with extensive studies in K-12 music education. He has taught and directed choirs and bands in middle schools, high schools, and in colleges throughout Washington and California, has instructed a number of private students in vocal performance and piano, and currently teaches at Spindrift School of the Performing arts in Pacfica. An avid performer, Mr. Cowan has enjoyed recent appearances as Papageno; The Magic Flute, Bill; Kiss Me, Kate; Jud;Oklahoma!; Officer Lockstock; Urinetown; and The Cat in the Hat; Seussical. Mr. Cowan is also a scholar of liturgical music and serves as music director at St. Lawrence O'Toole Catholic Church in Oakland. He is currently pursuing a Masters in Music in vocal performance at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.
Angie Crabtree > Visual Arts, 2008-2012
Ms. Crabtree is an artist from the Bay Area whose current work is an investigation into consumer culture and trends. She has a Bachelor's in Fine Art from the San Francisco Art Institute, education from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, she’s studied abroad at the Gerrit Reitveld Academie of the Netherlands and has 10 years of experience in art education.
Her work has explored many themes including the nature of childhood, nostalgia and innocence. Children are a huge inspiration to her, and she constantly feeds off of their creativity. As a recent graduate, Ms. Crabtree has a fun, fresh attitude towards creative expression and she likes to encourage her students to experiment as much as possible. She promotes the use of different mediums, as well as the process of conceptualizing through art. Ms. Crabtree’s class themes are always connected with nature, and she has been known to bring in her carnivorous plant collection.
Rachel Dawson > Visual Arts, 2011
Visual artist, Rachel Dawson was born and grew up in Southern California. After spending her childhood and young adult years pursuing an acting career, Rachel decided that her real love was for painting and drawing. Transferring out of her drama program at the University of Southern California, she made her way to the Bay Area, upon being accepted to the joint-degree program between the California College of the Arts and University of San Francisco. Awarded her BFA in 2002, Rachel kept up her studio practice, participating in a number of exhibits all over California. She started teaching art to elementary and middle school students in both Los Angeles and in the Bay Area. However, working alone for so many years, with a dwindling art community and a lack of critical feedback, Rachel felt that her next step was returning to school. In 2008, Rachel applied to graduate school. Currently, she is in her second year at California College of the Arts and will graduate in 2011 with her Masters of Fine Art. She looks forward to continuing her practice and maintaining her connections teaching children and teenagers.
Juan De La Rosa > Dance, since 2012
Mr. De La Rosa began his dance training at San Francisco State University, where he received bachelors degrees in Theater Arts and Dance. Since then, he has been an active member of both the theater and dance communities in the Bay Area and has danced with Kelly Kemp and Company, 13th Floor Dance theatre and Sean Dorsey Dance. He has also been a guest artist in Dance Brigade’s Great Liberation Upon Hearing, Chris Black/Potrzebe’s Extinction Burst: a dance of lost movement at the Cal Academy of Sciences and Little Seismic Dance’s We Don’t Belong Here.
Mr. De La Rosa began teaching 10 years ago through Kidstock Inc. summer camps and continued teaching at summer camps throughout the years. In the summer of 2012, he received training in Curriculum Enhancing Dance through USF’s department of Performing Arts and Social Justice. He has been a guest instructor at Working Actor’s Wednesdays, SFSU and USF and is currently teaching at ODC’s Youth Program in addition to the San Francisco Arts Education Program.
Bruce Demetrius (Baba Duru) > Rhythms and Instrument Making, 2011-2012
Baba Duru is a world percussionist and member of folkloric dance troupes from Cuba, Haiti, Brazil, Peru, Congo, Guinea, Senegal, Northern India and the United States. He spent years studying and performing with Master Drummers from the above mentioned countries and currently teaches and accompanies the Modern and Haitian Courses at San Francisco State University and City College of San Francisco and is musical director of Alafia Dance Troupe.
Amadou Diawara > Music, 2008-2010
Mr. Diawara, a native of Senegal, began his career with the world renowned West African Drum and Dance Company, BOUGARABOU. In 1992, artistic director Amadou M’baye Bagourra inivited Mr. Diawara to begin studying and performing with Bougarabo’s African Ballet Company.
Bougarabou presents the history and culture of West African Music through exhilarating performances of song, dance, stilt walking, fire eating and acrobats. Bougarabou performs in Senegal for tourist groups in local hotels and resorts and also travels internationally to share their captivating talent in West African drumming and dancing.
In 1997, Mr. Diawara, along with other artists, started an independent drum and dance company known as KAKILAMBE. He continued to teach workshops and perform with Kakilambe until he moved to Cincinnati, Ohio in June, 2001. He began his career in the United States as a West African drum and dance teacher that summer. Mr. Diawara taught drum and dance to youth campers (ages 5-17) at Farm and Wilderness in Plymouth, Vermont. He has also taught classes for children, teens and adults in Cincinnati, Ohio, and at the YMCA in Vevay, Indiana. He also organized, directed and taught drum and dance workshops in Indiana and Ohio. Mr. Diawara was also privileged to experience Carnival in Bahia, Brazil, where he performed with a West African group for two weeks in 2002. He relocated to San Francisco in November of 2002. He has taught drum classes at the African American Cultural Center, drummed for Alassane Kane’s dance class at the San Francisco Dance Center and continues to share his music and culture with the Bay Area. Mr. Diawara is currently performing with Niancho Enyaley’s West African Drum and Dance Company located in the Los Angeles area. In 2007, Mr. Diawara implemented an educational rhythm and movement/creative expression program to teach children in local school districts. He is also director of the West African Dance Company Bu Falle, which offers in-school and after-school assembly performances as well as festival and community performances. Mr. Diawara believes drumming and dancing know no boundaries and connect all ages and ethnicities.
Katie Dorame > Visual Arts, 2011-2013
Ms. Dorame was born in Los Angeles and moved to the Bay Area to pursue an MFA at the California College of the Arts, where she graduated in May of 2011. She also holds a BA in art from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Her focus is painting and drawing, but informal sculptures pop up as well. She has taught children in France and has studied art history at the American University of Paris. She has also worked for the University of California, Berkeley’s ATDP summer camp as an arts-and-crafts teacher. Ms. Dorame has participated in group shows throughout the Bay Area. Most recently her work was shown in The Future is Now: New Bay Area MFA Graduates at the Sonoma State University Art Gallery.
Ken Doumbia > Music, 2009-2011
Mr. Doumbia is a professional West African performer and is one of the few artists who has had the opportunity to travel the globe as a master drummer and dancer with every prominent ballet company in his region, including the internationally renowned Ballet du Senegal and Afrique Noire. He has since made his home in the Bay Area as a respected member of the drum and dance community. He has extensive experience working with numerous schools and dance companies; teaching to students of all ages the music, dance and traditions of West Africa.
Mr. Doumbia has worked with all age groups from kindergarten to high school, and also at the college level. He has worked in both affluent schools and in inner-city schools with troubled youth. He has prepared students for many performances in small venues and large, such as SF Carnival and the SF International Food Fair. KIPP Bayview received a year grant to fund his job as a performing arts director for their junior high music and dance program, and the school performed at several venues including a Breast Cancer Awareness forum.
Mr. Doumbia’s students learn not only how to drum and dance, they also learn a lot about African culture. Mr. Doumbia teaches them many stories about how people live in Africa, how community is important and how to respect our elders. He teaches them many stories from his book, co-authored with his wife: The Way of the Elders: West African Spirituality & Tradition by Adama & Naomi Doumbia, Ph.D. Mr. Doumbia is fluent in Wolof, Bamana, French, Spanish and English.
Jasmine Douville > Dance, 2011-2013
Jasmine Douville is an educator, dancer and community activist focusing her art on how cultures are perceived in America. Teaching in the community for the past five years, she strives to show students the importance of dance education. Receiving her MFA in Dance at Mills College in Oakland California she plans to continue with her education and will be applying to doctorate programs soon.
Ms. Douville has been teaching and writing about dance education and its many benefits for years; she recently finished her first published journal, “Steps Ahead: Community Based Dance Education.” Focusing on at-risk youth and marginalized people in our society, her journal outlines a curriculum for children in the community and the benefits of education and dance. Her choreographic work has been featured at YBCA, Dance Mission Theater, Laney College, Black Choreographers Festival and Dancing in the Park.
Sean Forte > Musical Director, SFArtsED Players, 2010-2013
Mr. Forte is a graduate, magna cum laude, from the University of the Pacific’s Conservatory of Music with a BM in piano performance. He currently works at Ruth Asawa San Francisco School of the Arts serving the musical theater and vocal departments as an Artist-in-Residence. He is also the musical director for SOTA’s mainstage productions as he was last year (I Remember Mama, Ragtime). With SFArtsED, he works as an Artist-in-Residence at Commodore Sloat Elementary School and is the musical director of the Event Players. Aside from this, he collaborates as a musical director and a pianist for several organizations throughout the Bay Area such as Spindrift School of Performing Arts, Pacifica Spindrift Players, YPTMTC and several others.
Victoria Fry > Visual Arts, since 2014
Ms. Fry received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the School of Visual Arts and is working toward her Master of Arts in Teaching from the Maine College of Art. Her work in the classroom has taken her from the Hudson Guild Children's Center and Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York to the Ocean Avenue Elementary School in Portland, Maine and the San Francisco School. Ms. Fry expresses her philosophy like this: "Growing up in the fog laden fields of rural England, to the sun swept shores of Northern California, the natural world has deeply inspired my philosophy as an artist and educator. I believe students learn by actively exploring and investigating new ideas through different means of creative expression."
Anne Garvey > Visual Arts, 2006-2010
Ms. Garvey received her BFA in Painting from the San Francisco Art Institute. She also studied Fine Arts at the Academy of Art College. She has been an Arts Educator through the Degenhardt Foundation in Hoi An, Vietnam and served as a Visitor Services Assistant at the Oakland Museum of California. Ms. Garvey has also been a Classroom Volunteer at the Peralta Elementary School in Oakland.
Nicole Rose Gelormino > Visual Arts, 2011-2012
Ms. Gelormino is a teaching artist who works with San Francisco Recreation & Parks Cultural Arts Division and Art Seed as well as Gateway High School. She attained her masters in art and art education at Teachers College, Columbia University and her bachelors in arts and education at Eugene Lang College, New School University. She focused her studio education on painting at Sarah Lawrence College, Eugene Lang College, Parsons School of Design and University of Basque Country in Spain. She currently maintains a studio practice in San Francisco.
Julia Graham > Dance, 2007-2010
Ms. Graham received her Master of Fine Arts in Dance from Sarah Lawrence College. She has performed locally in solo and ensemble works with emerging Asian American artists at Intersection for the Arts and at CounterPulse and has choreographed work in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia. Her work has also been performed at the Bessie Schoenberg Dance Theater in New York. Ms. Graham was an Assistant Teacher at the School for Performing Arts at P.S. 315 and the Frank Sinatra High School in New York. She has also taught at the Kipp Academy in New York. Currently, Ms. Graham teaches Hatha Yoga in San Mateo.
Betty Grandis > Theater, 2011
Ms. Grandis has taught theater to adults and children of all ages throughout her career. She has worked as an educator for the New Conservatory Theatre Center, Sunset Learning Center, Marin Shakespeare Company, Hillbarn Theatre Conservatory, Civic Arts Education and Harbor-Solano College Youth Conservatory Theatre. She has designed the theater arts curriculum for the Peninsula Partnership/Daly City Public Schools. In addition to serving as Director of Education for Golden Thread Productions, she is an accomplished actor having performed in regional theater, stock, off-Broadway and throughout the Bay Area. Ms. Grandis is a member of Actors’ Equity Association, Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists. She has a BFA in theater arts from Hofstra University with a specialty in performance, and an MA in drama from San Francisco State University, where she was awarded the Graduate Student Distinguished Achievement Award in Creative Arts.
Megan Gredesky > Theater, 2012-2013
Ms. Gredesky received her MFA in directing from Minnesota State University – Mankato before moving to San Francisco, where she recently completed her Drama Therapy training at the California Institute of Integral Studies. Her experience lies in teaching Theater Arts and Language Arts to high school students and college students, as well as directing musicals and non-musicals. As an MFA graduate, she wrote and directed a children’s musical based on the popular children’s book The Rainbow Fish. She also trained as a director at The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey. For the past year and half she has been bringing drama and play to elementary students in the East Bay as a form of healing. She appreciates the use of theater as an educational tool, including its use to cultivate child development and foster learning in the schools. She believes that any experiential approach to learning is richer and engages the child more fully.
Cassie Grilley > Musical Theater, 2012-2013
Ms. Grilley is graduate of the Ruth Asawa San Francisco School of the Arts High School and is thrilled to be working with the SFArtsED Players family this year as their stage manager. Ms. Grilley loves the arts and was a member of the Players and Young People's Teen Musical Theatre Company. Over the summer she performed as Ado Annie in the SFArtsED Summer production of Oklahoma! She loves working with all of the talented kids and artists and is excited for this year's Players production of Bells are Ringing.
Jessalyn Haggenjos Barr > Visual Arts, since 2007
Ms. Haggenjos Barr received her Master of Fine Arts from the California College of the Arts. Her work has been exhibited in major US cities that include New York, Boston, Richmond, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Portland and Seattle. Locally, Ms. Haggenjos Barr’s art has been seen at Root Division, The Autonomous Museum, Swarm Gallery, Crucible Steel Gallery, Café Royale, and the Oakland Art Gallery. She has also been shown in Copenhagen, Denmark. Ms. Haggenjos Barr has been a Teaching Assistant at California College of the Arts and has taught Painting and Drawing for SFArtsED’s Summer Camp.
Rachael Hammer > Theater, since 2015
Ms. Hammer's love of story began as a child writing stories, poems, essays, spoken-word pieces and plays through her life journey. Her passion and belief in embodied story/theatre as a personal and social change tool led her to audition for a theater conservatory program later in life, where her beliefs were empowered and inspired further. Taking a break soon after her conservatory training to care for and create a family of her own, she now reembarks on her mission to share the transformative gift of theatre with students around the Bay Area. She studied theater at the Foothill College Theatre Conservatory and Fine Arts Department and has worked as an instructor with Portola Valley Theatre Conservatory, Smartly U and Children's Fairyland. She has also interned with TheatreWorks and Magic Theatre.
Deborah Hoch > Visual Arts, since 2006
Ms. Hoch received her BFA from the San Francisco Art Institute. She has exhibited her work throughout California in venues that include the Bucheon Gallery, Dorothy Weiss Gallery, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art Rental Gallery, de Saisset Museum and the International Airports in San Francisco and Los Angeles. Ms. Hoch has been teaching clay classes in San Francisco for adults and children since 1995. She has served on the faculty of the EBA/Soma Studio School, taught ceramics at The Crucible in Oakland and worked for Terra Mia Studios Art Exploration Summer Day Camp.
Kari Hoffman > Theater, 2010-2011
Ms. Hoffman is a recent graduate from Cornish College in Seattle. She earned her BFA in theater with an emphasis in arts education and directing. Since college she has worked as an intern teaching artist at Seattle Children's Theatre and as a teaching artist fellow at the California Shakespeare Theater. She is now beginning her career as a teaching artist at multiple schools around the Bay Area.
Prajakti Jayavant > Visual Arts, 2011-2012
As an art teacher in convalescent hospitals and in elementary and special education schools, Ms. Jayavant has taught students from 3 to 103 years old. She implements writing, puppetry, storytelling and a healthy dose of fun into her visual arts pedagogy. Her elementary school students are active artist explorers who often find themselves within the environment of a cherished storybook, within constructed classroom caves, and even transforming the Golden Gate Bridge into a variety of musical instruments. Ms. Jayavant believes in fostering the creativity and the imagination that is unique to each student.
She holds a BFA from Ohio State University and an MFA from the California College of Arts and Crafts. Her artwork has been curated by Lawrence Rinder and John Zarobell in San Francisco. She has exhibited at the Drawing Center in New York and is a recipient of the Visions from the New California Award.
Douglas Johnson > Dance, 2008-2009
Mr. Johnson received his Associate of Arts in Dance from Grossmont Community College. He acquired extensive performance experience as a member of San Diego’s Eveoke Dance Theatre from 2002-2007. While with the company he also taught at the company school and worked in in-school and after-school programs, teaching hip-hop, modern, and creative dance programs at all levels, from pre-school through college. He also helped lead a successful pilot program in teaching literacy through dance at Freese Elementary School. Mr. Johnson’s experience also includes choreography and theatre production.
Jean Johnstone > Theater, 2012
Ms. Johnstone is the associate director and dramaturg for the David Herrera Performance Co, a San Francisco modern dance company focusing on the Latino Diaspora. She is founding and building the Applied Theater Action Institute in Oakland. She spent three years teaching and directing new work in Hong Kong, where she was the lead drama instructor at the Hong Kong University Graduate Association College, and a delegate at the IDEA international arts education congress.
She was an artistic director of Rococo Risque Cabaret (Best Theatre Ensemble SF Weekly 2005) and was a founding member of the Million Fishes Art Collective in San Francisco, directing their inaugural show, SUBmerged. Ms. Johnstone studied at The Moscow Art Theater in Russia and holds a graduate certificate in Theater Arts from the University of California, Santa Cruz, as well as her bachelor’s degree, also from UCSC. She has worked with director Baz Luhrman, with the San Francisco Mime Troupe, Brava for Women in the Arts, WE Players, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, and others. She is currently creating the Applied Theater Action Institute in Oakland.
Dallas Kavanagh > Visual Arts, 2008-2009
Ms. Kavanagh received her MFA from the New York State College of Ceramics at the Alfred University School of Art & Design. Her work has been exhibited nationally in New York, California, Oregon and Wisconsin. In 2008 she also exhibited work in Beijing, China. Ms. Kavanagh has taught classes in sculpture, mixed media and metal fabrication through the NYSCC AU SAD program. Other teaching experience includes work in Brookline and Boston, Massachusetts as well as Rosendale, New York.
Ben Keim > Musical Theater, 2009-2010
Mr. Keim was raised in Cincinnati , Ohio , and has lived in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1993. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from San Francisco State University. He has worked extensively as a pianist for musical theatre, dance classes, choirs, and solo vocalists and instrumentalists all over the Bay Area. Mr. Keim is currently the music director/organist at Ocean Avenue Presbyterian Church, in San Francisco. He also is the choral accompanist at St. Ignatius College Prep, and is the pianist for the long-running music theatre revue “Shopping! The Musical” at the Shelton Theatre. Mr. Keim has recently begun teaching piano and preparing singers for musical theatre auditions, and is looking to pursue a career in music therapy.
Katie Kerwin > Musical Theater, 2009-2013
Ms. Kerwin earned her degree in the performing arts, holding a BFA from New York University’s prestigious Tisch School of the Arts CAP21 Conservatory. She has had experience teaching voice and dance for over 15 years, and is herself a working actress with over 20 years experience working professionally. She offers private training in vocal technique, audition, and performance ages 5 to adult. Ms. Kerwin tailors each lesson to the individual needs of the student, from young beginner to seasoned professional. Her vocal background from NYU is classical with training in musical theatre/pop vocal performance. She also teaches classes in Broadway and contemporary tap dance styles from beginner to advanced. Ms. Kerwin joined the artistic staff at the professional Show Palace Dinner Theatre in 2003 as an assistant to the Artistic Director. In 2004 she became the Resident Choreographer for the Show Palace. She has directed and choreographed several shows there and her performances there have been a great tool for her students to see the application of techniques on the professional stage. Ms. Kerwin’s teaching expertise is Vocal Technique & Performance, Tap (Broadway and Contemporary), Musical Theatre Performance, and Acting. You may have seen her in TONY® award winning director Walter Bobbie and Broadway choreographer Randy Skinner’s, production of Irving Berlin’s White Christmas in San Francisco at the Orpheum Theatre in 2005, and subsequent performances at the FOX theatre in Detroit in 2006, and the Ordway in St. Paul in 2008. You can also hear her singing in the ensemble of the Broadway cast album of the show which was released in the fall of 2006. She is a member of NATS (National Association of Teacher’s of Singing) and the International Tap Association, and is a proud member of Actor's Equity Association, the professional stage actor’s union.
Amanda Klimek > Visual Arts, since 2013
Ms. Klimek received an MFA in sculpture from San Francisco Art Institute, where she focused on ceramics and electronics. She holds a BFA in painting from Pratt Institute and completed a study abroad in Venice, Italy. She has exhibited work in group shows at Root Division, Bedford Gallery, the Richmond Art Center and at the California Conference for the Advancement of Ceramic Arts in Davis, California. Ms. Klimek has been a teaching assistant at San Francisco Art Institute and has assisted in visual arts for SFArtsED Summer. Her work is motivated by an exploration of the physical and psychic relationships between the self, materials, objects and others. She believes in celebrating the individual and enjoys helping students to find their own artistic voice.
Diana Lee > Musical Theater, 2008-2013
Ms. Lee is a classically trained pianist and cellist teaching, performing and freelancing in the Bay Area. She teaches both instruments privately and works as an accompanist for church services and for instrumentalists and vocalists as well. She is a cellist in the Bear Valley Music Festival Orchestra and plays in various chamber groups in the East Bay. Most recently she has been studying chamber music with the members of the Alexander String Quartet, the resident quartet at San Francisco State University, where she also participates in the annual Yehudi Menuhin Chamber Music Festival. Ms. Lee did her undergraduate studies in Music and Physics at UC Berkeley. She resides in Berkeley and continues to be involved with the University Symphony and studies orchestral conducting under David Milnes. She has served as musical director of the Players, and continues to work as an Artist-in-Residence in the schools during the year and as a vocal coach in the summer. This year, she is putting together a Supplemental Workshop Series for the middle-school students in the Players, helping them with the process of applying to and auditioning for the Ruth Asawa San Francisco School of the Arts Vocal Department.
Fannie Lee Lowe > Theater, since 2015
Ms. Lowe is an accomplished actress on stage and screen. Her theater credits include work with American Conservatory Theater, San Jose Repertory Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, the Magic Theatre, TheatreWorks and the Western Addition Playhouse. On screen she has been seen in The Pursuit of Happyness and Sucker Free City and on TV in "Nash Bridges." She has taught acting at the Oakland School of the Arts and worked with KRON-TV and SF MUNI.
Laura Lowry > Theater, 2008-2012
Ms. Lowry is a teaching artist in the Bay Area. She has taught for Marin Shakespeare Company, Word for Word Theatre Company, CalShakes, New Conservatory Theatre, StageWrite, Malcolm X Elementary, Contra Costa College for Kids and SFArtsED. She is currently the Drama teacher at Brandeis Hillel Day School where she teaches K-8th grades. Ms. Lowry received her MFA from FSU/Asolo Conservatory and studied Shakespeare in London with Patsy Rodenburg, teacher at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. After graduate school, she moved to New York City, where she continued to study Shakespeare at The American Globe Theater. When Ms. Lowry is not teaching she is performing at venues all around the Bay Area. Some of her favorite Bay Area roles include Angel Face in Angel Face (Word for Word); Kathleen in Hard Laughter (Alter Theatre); Lady Caroline Bramble, Enchanted April (Porchlight Theatre Company); and Tracy Lord in The Philadelphia Story (Cinnabar Theatre.)
Cassi Maggio > Theaters, 2010-2011
Ms. Maggio completed the two-year training program with the Pacific Conservatory of the Performing Arts. Before PCPA, she received her BA in theater arts with an acting option and a minor in marketing (cum laude) from CSU East Bay. She began teaching young artists with PCPA’s Young People’s Project and since then has taught with New Conservatory Theatre, SFArtsED, StarStruck Theatre, TheatreWorks, Cal Shakes and Berkeley Playhouse. In addition to teaching, Casi can be seen performing with companies all over the Bay Area and as the marketing associate with Center REPerotry Company in Walnut Creek.
Mario El Caponi Mendoza > Theater, 2011-2012
Mr. Mendoza is a stage director, dramatist and dramaturg. In 2008, he received his BA in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus in Theatre for Youth and LGBT Studies from Arizona State University. He is currently an MFA Playwriting candidate finishing his last semester of course work from San Francisco State University. His plays include: The Penny Dreadful Project (also dir.), produced by The School of Theatre Cruelty in 2010; Brave, Battling Autism, produced by the College of Creative Arts at San Francisco State University in 2010; A Mad Dog in the Fog, produced by the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts at Arizona State University in 2011; Jump: A Love Story (also dir.), produced by The School of Theatre of Cruelty in 2011. Mr. Mendoza was named a semi-finalist at the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival in 2011 for his play Ophelia, Fragments of Her and most recently, a 2012 semi-finalist for his play Theory of the Red Nebula. He has also worked as a dramaturg for The Tour Bus, Teatro Bravo and San Francisco State University.
Randi Merzon > Theater, since 2014
Ms. Merzon has been an actor in the Bay Area for over 30 years. She has taught an after-school Drama Club and has been an Artist-in-Residence at Lafayette Elementary for five years. During that time she also co-directed and stage managed their school plays. Currently Ms. Merzon is working with 6th, 7th and 8th graders at Lawton Alternative School. Her professional work includes stage, film, commercial and voice-overs. She earned her BS degree in theatre, trained with Sydney Walker at American Conservatory Theater and Richard Seyd. She is a member of the Actor’s Equity Association. Her passion for teaching was inspired by her 12-year-old son.
Lydia Morris > Visual Arts, 2011
For more than a decade, Ms. Morris, an artist and teacher, has worked to enable young people to express themselves with skill and confidence in various media. In the Bay Area, she has been an art instructor with San Francisco Parks and Recreation and with Camp Edverture More in Moraga, and she was an artist in action with Frida Del Puebla at the Women's Building in San Francisco. Her work has been seen at the Martin Wong Gallery in San Francisco as well as 222 Gallery, Art Space Gallery and Galley 1822 in Fresno. She received her BA in painting from San Francisco State University.
Mozel Zeke Nealy > Music, since 1998
Mr. Nealy received his Bachelor of Arts in Black Studies and American History from San Francisco State University. His performances include the Ethnic Dance Festival, Oakland Youth Festival, San Francisco Jazz Festival, Yerba Buena Gardens for Robert Henry Johnson, Pecong for ACT, Tales of the City for PBS, Kimball’s’ East with Dizzy Gillespie, Radio Drama Workshop directed by Francis Ford Coppola and Life on the Water Theater. He has been a Staff Accompanist and Drummer for dance classes at Mills College, Marin Ballet, Skyline College, Pacifica, San Francisco State University, City College of San Francisco and the San Francisco Ballet. Mr. Nealy has taught Drum Workshops for Mills College, City College of San Francisco, California Arts Council Children’s and Adult Music Workshops, San Francisco State University and the Herald Project. He has been the Music Director for Group Petit LeCroix and Grupo Africania. He is the director of the Haitian Dance & Drum Retreat and Congo Solo and Percussion Festival, two major annual events dedicated to the study, exploration and performance of African derived music and culture. Mr. Nealy is a long time artist-in-residence in San Francisco public schools and has also taught for San Francisco Parks and Recreation.
Jim Santi Owen> Music, since 2005
Mr. Owen is a percussionist, educator, producer and performer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Drumming since the age of 8, he began an intensive training in the North Indian percussion instrument, tabla, in 1991, studying under Pandit Swapan Chaudhuri at the Ali Akbar College of Music, at the California Institute of the Arts, and in India. In 1995, Owen began studying South Indian percussion instruments including mridangam, ghatam, kanjira and morsing with master percussionist T.H. Subash Chandran, along with tavil taught by K. Sekar. At Cal Arts, Mr. Owen studied jazz with Charlie Haden, James Newton and Tootie Heath in addition to African drumming and dance from the Ladzekpo Brothers. Mr. Owen holds a Bachelor’s of Humanities from New College of California and a Master’s degree in World Music from California Institute of the Arts. He served as the Music Director for the San Francisco Word Music Festival from 2009-2014 and is on faculty at Dominican University, The Jazz Conservatory, and the Ali Akbar College of Music. He is currently serving a 3-year term as a panelist on the Zellerbach Family Fund’s Community Arts Panel.
Erik Parra > Visual Arts, since 2007
Mr. Parra received his Master of Fine Arts in Studio Art from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His work has been exhibited throughout America in states that include New York, Nebraska, Indiana, North Carolina, Illinois, Wisconsin, Maryland, Minnesota and Texas. His work has also been shown at the Museu de Arte de Brasilia. Locally, Mr. Parra's work has been exhibited at Southern Exposure Gallery, The Headlands Center for the Arts, Blankspace Gallery, Root Division and most recently at Johansson Projects in Oakland. He has lectured at the University of Wisconsin, Western University in Bellingham, Washington and Hastings College in Hastings, Nebraska. He has been a studio art teacher at the El Paso Museum of Art and has been a teaching artist for children at: Dream Yard in the Bronx; Architots in Middle Village, New York; the Monroe Street Fine Arts Center in Madison, Wisconsin; Children's Art Center and Kid's Art in San Francisco.
Teresa Partridge > Visual Arts, 2011
Ms. Partridge received her BFA in visual art in 2009 and an MA in Art Education in 2010 from Tufts University in affiliation with the School of the Museum Fine Arts, Boston. As a visual artist she works in screen-printing and other print media, where she manipulates old family photographs to become new memories. She has also dabbled in installation art, where she explored her fascination of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. As an art teacher, she has taught a toy-making summer class at the Museum Fine Arts, Boston and while a student teacher at Brookline High School, taught drawing I and Jewelry/metals I & II.
Phoenicia Pettyjohn> Dance, since 2014
Ms. Pettyjohn is a dance artist living in San Francisco. Since her arrival in 2000 she has performed all over town. Past and present collaborators include Susan Rethorst, Christy Funsch, Rosemary Hannon, Catherine Galasso, Minna Harri, Honey McMoney, Macklin Kowal, Kira Kirsch, Sarah Sass (peckpeck dance ensemble), Brooke Broussard, Neta Pulvermacher and Alma Esperanza Cunningham Movement. She has taught dance at Irvington High School., KunStoff Arts SF and CounterPulse. She is a graduate of the LA County H.S. for the Arts and believes that dance and all arts should be mandated in public education. She is also the Director of Bathroom Education at the ODC Dance Commons. Her teaching has been supported by the Center for Cultural Innovation NextGen Arts grant and Luna Dance Summer Institute 2014.
Sonia Reiter > Dance, 2010-2013
Ms. Reiter grew up in Virginia and received a BA in Dance from Oberlin College. She continued her studies at the Laban Centre in London and the Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance. She also completed a 200 hour Yoga Teaching Certification and pedagogical workshops with California Dance Learning / Luna Kids Dance. She has taught movement to children and adults since 2003 in schools, studios and community centers. In addition she has performed as a freelance dancer in the SF Bay Area as well as nationally and in Europe.
Linda Ricciardi > Musical Theater Costumes, 2006-2012
Ms. Ricciardi is a designer, milliner and builder specializing in sculptural costumes and soft sculpture props for theater. Ms. Ricciardi’s experience, while including numerous projects for stage, also includes projects for television, dance and opera. Some of Ms. Ricciardi’s notable projects include Broadway musicals (Spamelot, The Producers, Seussical, the Musical, The Lion King), Radio City Music Hall (Pokemon, Scooby Doo Live, Blues Clues,) The Lincoln Center Festival (My Life as a Fairy Tale,) and the Brooklyn Academy of Music (Pericles.)
Ms. Ricciardi moved to the Bay Area after working and living in New York City for 10 years. Her recent projects, in addition to teaching and designing costumes at both School of the Arts Alternative High School and Oakland School of the Arts, include: prop maker for the tour of Spamelot; Milliner for the show Passing Strange at the Berkeley Repertory Theater; and hat designer and milliner for the play Far Away by Caryl Churchill. Linda lives with her boyfriend Oliver and her cat Leo in San Francisco.
Anna Marie Rockwell > Visual Arts, 2011-2012
Ms. Rockwell was born in Greenbrae, California in 1980. She received her BFA in painting at the Pacific Northwest College of Art in Portland, Oregon. In 2005 she spent a semester at the Centre pour l’Art et de Culture, an art studio program facilitated through Maryland Institute College of Art in Aix en Provence. She then received a scholarship to spend a semester at the Pont Aven School of Contemporary Art. Ms. Rockwell has had several solo and group exhibitions in Italy, France, Estonia, and has participated in international artist residencies including MoKS, Center for Art and Social Practice in Estonia, A Gentil Carioca in Rio de Janeiro and SOMA Summer in Mexico D.F. From 2008 to 2010 she lived in New York City and worked as an assistant to Mexican artist Gabriel Orozco. She is currently an MFA candidate at the San Francisco Art Institute in the New Genres department.
David Rosenthal > Theater and Musical Theater, since 2002
Actor, teacher, voiceover artist, director and private coach, Mr. Rosenthal received his BA in Theatre, Anthropology, and English Literature from Sarah Lawrence College. He also studied acting in NYC at Herbert Bergoff Studios and in San Francisco with Richard Seyd. Cast in over 60 national commercials, television and film roles, Mr Rosenthal has also voiced hundreds of characters for video games by Sony, EA, Xbox, Sega, & Nintendo. Directorial and coaching credits include Kids on Camera, Kittredge School, Mercy High, Freeman School, SFUSD, Young Performers Theatre and Lilliput Players Children’s Theatre. He has over 20 years of teaching experience and works with all ages, from pre-school to seniors.
Matt Rupert > Musical Theater, 2009-2010
Mr. Rupert attended the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, MD, beginning in 2003. He was in the Bachelor of Music program for clarinet in the studio of Steven Barta, the Bachelor of Music Education program, as well as a Minor in Piano Performance in the studio of Nancy Roldan.
As a music educator, Mr. Rupert maintains private clarinet and piano studios and has taught in both the Baltimore County Public School System and the Howard County Public School System in Maryland. He specializes in instrumental music but has also spent significant time teaching and directing choral programs. From the summers of 2003 to 2007 Mr. Rupert also held a position as Musical Director of the OnStage Middle School Workshop in northern New Jersey where he directed middle school students in putting on a musical theatre revue.
Suzanne Santos > Circus Arts, 2007-2010
Ms. Santos holds a BA in Theatre from George Fox University. She is a graduate of the Dell'Arte International School of Physical Theatre, and earned an MA from the Clown Conservatory and New College in Theatrical Clowning. Ms. Santos is the lead Clown Therapist at Edgewood Center for Children and Families and has performed Off Broadway with the International tour of Terrence McNally's Corpus Christi. Locally she can be seen as a clown with the Pickle Family Circus School Tour.
Henry Shin > Musical Theater, since 2002
Mr. Shin served as assistant conductor of the University Symphony Orchestra and the San Francisco Civic Orchestra. He is in the PhD Conducting Program at UCLA. He has also served as music director of the UC Berkeley Summer Symphony for three summers, as assistant conductor of the USC Concert Orchestra and as guest conductor with the USC Thornton Symphony and Chamber Orchestras. Mr. Shin's principal conducting teachers include David Milnes, Carl St.Clair, John Barnett, and Larry Livingston. He has also attended master classes taught by Kurt Masur, Marin Alsop, Gustav Meier, Daniel Lewis, and Stanislaw Skrowavczewski. Recently, Mr. Shin has been the recipient of the of UC Berkeley's Alfred Hertz Memorial Traveling Fellowship, where he studied with Carl St.Clair at the Deutsches Nationaltheater und Staatskapelle Weimar in Germany. He began his musical training on the piano at the age of four, and later on the cello. Mr. Shin received his BA in music from UC Berkeley and his Master's at the USC Flora L. Thornton School of Music in orchestral conducting.
Jonathan Shue > Theater, 2010-2011
Mr. Shue received his BA in theatre from UCLA. He is an actor, singer and musician who grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. His local credits include Chester in A Civil War Christmas (TheatreWorks), Simon in Hay Fever (The Pear Avenue Theatre), various roles including musician in As You Like It (San Jose Repertory Theatre), Scripps in The History Boys (New Conservatory Theatre Center) and Cornelius in The Matchmaker and Algernon in The Importance of Being Earnest (California Theatre Center). He also appeared in 12 children's theatre productions, including international tours, with California Theatre Center. His upcoming shows include Babes in Arms at 42nd Street Moon in December 2010 and Compleat Female Stage Beauty at City Lights Theatre Company in San Jose in February 2011.
Alyssa Stone > Music, 2009-2010
Northern California native Ms.Stone recently completed her Post Graduate Degree in Voice at San Francisco Conservatory studying with Catherine Cook and Bryan Nies after receiving her Master of Music from New England Conservatory studying with Patricia Craig and Damien Francoeur-Krzyzek and her Bachelor of Music from Illinois Wesleyan University studying with Dr. Carren Moham and Dr. Rachel Jensen while also Minoring in Theatre Dance.
Ms. Stone loves working with youth in the Arts and has been a voice teacher, choreographer, and director for many years. She is the Arts Education Program Assistant for the San Francisco Arts Commission and also works for the Education Department and as a Teaching Artist at the San Francisco Opera.
Performing since she was 8 years old, some of Ms. Stone’s most recent Operatic roles have included: La Fée in Cendrillon (Massenet); Lucia in The Rape of Lucretia; Clorinde in Cendrillon (Isouard); The Policewoman of Love in Orpheus in the Underworld; Stella in A Streetcar Named Desire; Madame Goldentrill in The Impresario; The Queen of the Night in Die Zauberflöte; Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia; and the Soprano Soloist in Handel's Messiah. At San Francisco Conservatory, she also had the opportunity to perform in the Musicals You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown and Urinetown. Ms. Stone participated in AIMS in Graz, Austria where she sang in the Opera and Operetta Programs and has sung with the Bay Area Summer Opera Theatre Institute performing as Despina in Così fan tutte, Frasquita in Carmen, Mariane in Tartuffe, Nanetta in Falstaff, and Tytania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Recently joining the illustrious Lamplighter’s gang, Ms. Stone had the good fortune of experiencing immortality as a fairy in Iolanthe and was seen this summer in Woodminster’s Singin’ in the Rain and Brigadoon.
At New England Conservatory, Ms. Stone was awarded a Fellowship Grant to perform recitals around the Boston area and had the opportunity to direct along side the Opera Faculty for a number of scene productions. She also acted as the Assistant Director for Boston Opera Collaborative's production of Don Giovanni.
Eric Subido > Literary Arts, 2011-2012
Mr. Subido has been working with children, youth and families for about 10 years in San Francisco. His undergraduate degree from San Francisco State University is in Child and Adolescent Development and he received his master's degree in expressive arts therapy from the California Institute of Integral Studies. His specialty population is highly disadvantaged at-risk youth in San Francisco. He currently runs his own expressive arts program for children called Dance Your Art Out which provides creative movement based social learning experiences for children through art and play. He has been practicing yoga for a number of years and has been creating socially conscious rap music for most of his life.
Gabrielle Teschner > Visual Arts, 2008-2009
Ms. Teschner received her MFA from California College of the Arts. Locally she has exhibited work at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Queens Nails Annex, 18 Reasons, John Berggruen Gallery, Playspace Gallery, Oliver Art Center, Haines Gallery and the Pro Arts Gallery. Her work has also been presented in Boston and New York and is in the collections of the Virginia Commonwealth University and the Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts at the De Young Museum. Her work is also in the private collections of David Breskin and Ed Ruscha. Ms. Teschner has been a Gallery Assistant at the Wattis Institute and a Researcher and Teaching Assistant at CCA.
Cole Thomason-Redus > Music, Vocal Coach & Accompanist, SFArtsED Players, 2010-2011
A fifth-generation San Franciscan, Mr. Thomason-Redus is quickly emerging as a sought-after conductor and educator of choral music and musical theater. Currently in his 11th year as an Artist-In-Residence at Ruth Asawa School of the Arts in San Francisco, his many duties there have included music director of the Musical Theater Department, assistant director of the Vocal Department and instructor of advanced placement music theory. For the last decade, Mr. Thomason-Redus has been a vocalist and composer for the renowned choral ensemble Schola Cantorum San Francisco, a 14-voice professional ensemble specializing in sacred choral literature of the past century. Many of his works written for the Schola have been recorded and broadcast on NPR and several online music sites, and have been performed by the San Francisco Symphony Chorus under the direction of Ragnar Bolin. Additional conducting experience has included guest and interim directorships of various local community choirs and theaters. He was also a co-founding director of International Orange Choral, a local semi-professional performing ensemble. Internationally, Mr. Thomason-Redus has performed in 12 countries in Europe. As a vocalist, he continues to perform anywhere and everywhere from cathedrals to piano bars. Also of note, he served for three years as a classical music analyst on the Music Genome Project at Pandora.com, specializing in vocal, choral and operatic literature.
Rose Tully > Literary Arts, 2011-2012
Ms. Tully facilitates memoir writing workshops with under-published voices young and old, and in another teaching job is schooled by feral third graders daily. She received the 2011 Leo Litwak Award in fiction at San Francisco State University, where she completed her Master of Fine Arts in creative writing, and where she currently teaches creative writing. This year, her fiction stories have found homes – one in University of Wisconsin Press's Windy City Queer: Dispatches From the Third Coast, and one in Bay Area's Lit-Up Writers Highlights in Low Lighting. Last year, Ms. Tully was selected for the 2010 RADAR Writers Retreat in Akumal, Mexico, and hopes her work will take her to even more magical places.
Amelia Uzategui Bonilla > Dance, since 2014
Born in Lima, Peru, Ms. Uzategui Bonilla is a professional dancer, director and educator based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She graduated from The Juilliard School's Dance Department with scholastic distinction and received the Inter-Arts Award for leading interdisciplinary outreach projects. In NYC, she worked as a freelance dancer working with Adam Barruch and the Metropolitan Opera Ballet and taught in the NYC public schools with Mark DeGarmo & Dancers/Dynamic Forms Inc. She interpreted the works of Tino Sehgal and Marina Abramović in renowned NYC museums such as the Guggenheim and MoMA. In Europe, she danced with Sodaberg in Germany and Croatia. Amelia arrives in San Francisco after four years of living and working in Peru, delving into her cultural heritage and collaborating with Peruvian artists in Lima and Cusco from the ballet, contemporary, folklore, urban dance, theater, visual arts and performance art scenes. She taught dance passionately in private and public universities and studios, as well as volunteering her time with numerous community art projects in under-served neighborhoods. She co-founded Rio Danza Comunitaria in 2013, a collective focused on deepening environmental conscientiousness through community dance workshops and performance rituals in Lima and Cusco. In the fall of 2014, she moved to San Francisco and is currently a Tamalpa Institute training program student, co-founded by Daria and Anna Halprin.
Rebecca Weisser > Dance, 2005-2012
Ms. Weisser brings her love of dance in all its forms to children of all ages throughout San Francisco. She has been teaching dance to children and adults for the past 10 years. She was trained at Luna Kids’ Summer Dance Institute, and her classes include everything from hip-hop to hula to Bhangra to square dance. Ms. Weisser recently became the executive director of Moving Beyond Productions (MBP) and is developing an advanced performance group with her star students from all over San Francisco—many of them from SFArtsED. This year they performed in Carnaval, alongside many teachers and parents, with a mix of Haitian, hip-hop, meringue, and samba. Before starting her own Carnaval contingent, she danced with and co-directed Mixtiso Latin Hip-Hop, under the artistic direction of Vanessa Mosqueda from 2001 to 2010. In addition to being a dance teacher, Ms. Weisser is the outreach coordinator for the Marsh Youth Theater, recruiting youth from the Mission District and other underserved communities to become involved in theater productions. She works with families as well, translating (in Spanish) and helping the families support their children in their artistic growth. She also teaches a parent-child dance class at the LGBT Center, and she was also the arts coordinator at Sanchez Elementary School from 2002-2005. Ms. Weisser has a BA in politics from UC Santa Cruz.