Meet the Company

Brad AuCoin
Brad AuCoin is a drummer, singer/songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist from Stephenville, Newfoundland. At the young age of eight Brad began lessons with well-known local drummer Roy Berti. In 2012 he began studies at St. Francis Xavier University, where in 2014 he graduated with his Diploma in Jazz Studies. The following semester he attended the College of the North Atlantic to study Sound Recording and Production where he graduated in 2016. This will be his fifth season with the Festival and he is excited to be working with such a talented and hardworking team.

 

Roger Bean
Roger Bean created the long-running off-Broadway hit The Marvelous Wonderettes (18 months at the Westside Theatre), along with the sequels Wonderettes: Caps & Gowns, Winter Wonderettes, and Wonderettes: Dream On. Original cast albums for all four shows in the Wonderettes franchise are available from iTunes and Amazon. The Marvelous Wonderettes received the 2007 LA Ovation Award for Best Musical for its long-running Los Angeles production, and continues to be an audience favorite in regional and amateur theater companies throughout the country. Mr. Bean revisits Springfield, USA with his newest jukebox hit Life Could Be A Dream. With a record-breaking 12-month run in Los Angeles, the show received the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award, the LA Weekly Theatre Award and the Backstage Garland Award for Outstanding Musical. Mr. Bean wrote and created the popular jukebox musicals Summer of Love, The Andrews Brothers, Route 66, Honky Tonk Laundry and Why Do Fools Fall In Love? and all currently available through licensing agent Steele Spring Stage Rights. Additional musicals created by Mr. Bean include Don’t Touch That Dial!,That’s Amoré and Beach Blanket Bash. Mr. Bean is currently the president of Steele Spring Stage Rights, the foremost independent theatrical publisher in the United States.

 

Christopher Benjamin
Born in Sydney, Australia, Christopher Benjamin completed a Bachelor of Musical Theatre (Honours) at Lasalle College of the Arts Singapore through the Open University of London and a Masters of Teaching in Music and Drama. Christopher also graduated Second City’s inaugural music improvisation conservatory in Toronto and has worked with Canadian theatre companies like Plain Stage, Confidential Theatre Company, Tool Kit Theatre, Creativiva and The LOT . Christopher is very grateful to be making his Stephenville Theatre Festival debut as performer and co-director.

 

Heather Braaten
Heather is thrilled to join STF this year as Artistic Director. An award-winning professional theatre director and playwright, Heather has specific interests and expertise in the fields of new play development, devised theatre, large ensemble physical theatre as well as musical theatre. She has directed over 40 professional productions across North America. Heather also has theatre administration training and experience in the areas of artistic direction, company management, tour management and producing. She would love to thank you for joining us at the festival this summer! Enjoy the show!

 

Christopher Cennon
Christopher Cennon has spent the last decade as an accompanist and repertoire coach for the students of the Music Theatre Performance Program at St. Lawrence College, in Brockville, ON. He most recently filled the roles of arranger and music director for Something Magical, a recital of music from animated movies, created for the Brockville Operatic Society (and a cast of 70!).  Future projects include a re-orchestration of The Nutcracker, as well as a collection of atheist gospel songs.

 

Laura Chadderton
Laura Chadderton is a trombonist, and multi-instrumentalist from Corner Brook, Newfoundland. For as long as she can remember, music has been the most important part of her life. She will be attending the music program at Memorial University in the fall. This is her first season with the Festival and she is very excited to be working with such a talented and dedicated group.

 

 

Ben Dunphy
Ben is pleased to be returning for his fourth season with Stephenville Theatre Festival. This season Ben is playing guitar in The Marvelous Wonderettes and bass guitar in Urinetown and Rocketman. In September he will resume studies at College of the North Atlantic, St. John’s, in the Sound Recording and Production program.

 

 

Rebecca Durocher
Rebecca Durocher is a professional Stage Manager from Montréal, Québec. She is currently in her third year of study at the National Theatre School of Canada. Previous Stage Management credits include: A Midsummer Nights Dream (Montreal, 2017), Blue Champagne (Stephenville, 2016), A Closer Walk With Patsy Cline (Stephenville, 2016), Echoes (Sherbrooke, 2016) and Pandemonium (Sherbrooke, 2015). She specializes in the Stage Management of new works and collective creations and has had the privilege of working alongside Michael Kennard of Mump & Smoot to create two new musicals. She is honoured to be returning to the Stevenville Theatre Festival for her second season.

Alysse Ernewein
Alysse Ernewein is thrilled to be a part of Stephenville’s vibrant season! Originally from Canmore, Alberta, Alysse is a singer, dancer and actor, as well as a songwriter. Favourite roles include Carmen Diaz in Fame and Lily in The Skriker. She is a graduate of Randolph Academy for the Performing Arts and Governor General Award recipient. Alysse is delighted to join the company and would like to thank friends and family for their constant support and guidance.

 

Michael Fenwick
Michael Fenwick is thrilled to be working backstage with STF for the first time since 1989. He has been involved in the performing and cinematic arts for over 29 years, starting as an actor in film and theatre with a BFA from Memorial University of Newfoundland and has branched out into directing, writing and producing in both disciplines. Featured projects have been as diverse as performing in Shakespeare and Checkov, to writing and directing original work in French. Michael has also worked in the technical sides of theatre and film as a set and lighting designer and a video editor. His credits include numerous short films including narratives, industrial projects and documentaries. His last narrative project was writing and directing Emile’s Legacy for the College of the North Atlantic. He is currently shooting and editing three French documentaries for Arco in Port au Port, Newfoundland, and is working as an assistant editor for Hors Circuits, a television series for Unis TV.

Emma Ferrante
Emma Ferrante is thrilled to be making her debut at STF, and to be a part of such a welcoming and talented company. She is especially excited to be tackling an important Canadian piece during Canada’s 150th celebration. Select performance credits: Lady of the LakeSpamalot!Mrs. Corry/Bird WomanMary Poppins (The LOT), and Fame! performed in Dubai (Creativiva). Emma is also a director, adjudicator, and educator in Toronto, ON.

 

Thomas Goetz
Thomas is thrilled to be making his debut at the Stephenville Theatre Festival! Thomas is going into his final year of Sheridan College’s Bachelor of Musical Theatre Performance program. Selected credits include: How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (Theatre Sheridan), We are Canadian (Charlottetown Festival Young Company), RentSpamalot, and The Little Mermaid (Lower Ossington Theatre). Enjoy the show!

 

Peyton Hanlon
Since 2014 Peyton has be involved in multiple theatre productions first acting in Fame The Musical (2015) as Myers, later Elephant’s Graveyard (2015) and received an award for best acting as The Trainer at the St. John’s regional Drama festival. More recently Peyton has taken up the backstage side of shows designing props and lights as well as stage managing Grease! The Musical (2017). Thank you to everyone who has come, enjoy the shows!

 

Gail Hickey
Gail is very excited for her eleventh season with Stephenville Theatre Festival! Even when the season ends, Gail’s job as Bookkeeper/Administrative Assistant keeps her busy throughout the year.  A native of St. George’s, Gail is a graduate of Western College’s Accounting, Payroll, and Business Administration program. She is a volunteer with many organizations, including the Bay St. George Mi’kmaq Youth Justice Strategy and Indian Cove Women’s Circle. She is also a proud member of the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation Band.

 

Amelia Hironaka
Amelia is thrilled to be back in wonderful Stephenville for the summer! A native of Calgary, AB, she pursued theatre at the Randolph Academy in Toronto. Since graduating she has had the opportunity to perform, choreograph and teach internationally. Past credits include: Blue Champagne & Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (STF), Anything Goes (The LOT), Disenchanted (Starvox Ent.). So grateful for her family and friends for their never-ending love and support! Enjoy!

 

Mark Hollman
Mark Hollmann received the Tony Award, the National Broadway Theatre Award, and the Obie Award for his score to Urinetown the Musical, which had its start in the 1999 New York International Fringe Festival. It won Outer Critics Circle, Drama League, and Lucille Lortel Awards for best musical in addition to garnering 10 Tony Award nominations. Other shows as composer/lyricist include Yeast Nation(2011 New York International Fringe Festival, Perseverance Theatre, American Theatre Company, and Ray of Light Theatre), Bigfoot and Other Lost Souls (Atlantic Stage and Perseverance Theatre), The Man in the White Suit (New York Stage and Film), The Girl, the Grouch, and the Goat (University Theatre, U. of Kansas), Alchemist the Musical (Seattle Fringe Festival), Jack the Chipper (Greenview Arts Center, Chicago), Kabooooom! (University Theater, U. of Chicago), I Think I Can and Deal with It! (Berkshire Theatre Festival), and Fare for All (Mount Vernon Hotel Museum & Garden, NYC). Actor and/or co-writer for the Cardiff Giant Theater (Chicago) productions The Rack, Theater of Funny, The Mercy Ripper, LBJFKKK, Love Me, All Eight Die, and After Taste, the last of which he also directed. TV: songs for Disney Channel’s Johnny and the Sprites. He has served on the Tony Nominating Committee, serves on the Council of the Dramatists Guild of America, and is a member of ASCAP. He is also a member of Sure Foundation Lutheran Church in Woodside, Queens, where he serves as a part-time pianist. He and his wife Jilly live in Manhattan with their sons, Oliver and Tucker.

Greg Kotis
Greg Kotis wrote the book and co-wrote the lyrics for URINETOWN THE MUSICAL, for which he won two Tony Awards in 2002. His new play, PIG FARM, opened at The Roundabout Theatre in New York City and at The Old Globe Theatre in San Diego in 2006. Currently, he is developing two new musicals with Mark Hollmann: YEAST NATION (the triumph of life), an original story that tells the tale of the dawn of life on Earth, and THE MAN IN THE WHITE SUIT, a musical version of the 1951 Alec Guiness film. Other plays include EAT THE TASTE (at New York’s Barrow Street Theatre), JOBEY AND KATHERINE, BARON von SIEBENBURG MELTS THROUGH THE FLOORBOARDS, and GIVE THE PEOPLE WHAT THEY WANT. Greg lives in Brooklyn with his wife Ayun, his daughter India, and his son Milo.

Isy Lacombe
Isy Lacombe is Toronto born artist studying technical theatre production at Grenfell. This is her first time working with Stephenville Theatre Festival. Isy has been happy to be a part of the theatre community in Corner Brook since moving to the province. She worked with Stage West Theatre Festival in their 2014 and 2015 seasons. Isy’s recent credits include Agamemnon/Antigonick (Theatre at Grenfell), Goodnight Desdemona, Good Morning Juliet (Theatre at Grenfell), The Woman in Black (Hard Ticket) and Constellations (Hard Ticket).

 

Laird Macdonald
Laird is a lighting, projection and set designer, technical director and production manager with more than 20 years of experience in the profession. His work spans design for theatre, dance, fine and performance art, installations, film and video, music, events and opera. Laird began his career in sculpture and photography, and then trained in film and video at the Emily Carr College of Art & Design, in Vancouver. He has been nominated several times for The Dora Mavor Moore award in Toronto for his lighting design and has been a designer, or technical director on many Dora winning and nominated productions. In conjunction with his design and management career in the arts, Laird has been mentoring, designing and teaching in the theatre program at Humber College in Toronto for the past 9 years. Laird has taught lighting courses, and has designed shows, mentored student designers, technicians and technical directors. Over the last 7 years, Laird has developed and continues to teach a devised theatre course in conjunction with 2 other professors. Laird continues to enjoy working on productions in both French and English.

Ann Maisuradze
Ann is an emerging set and costume designer from Toronto. Her foundation lies in visual art, with a strong lean towards the quirky and new. Ann hopes to get the opportunity to share her zany ideas with the theatre and film industries, while keeping faithful to the strong ideals that the fields were built upon.

 

 

Jacqueline Martin
Jacqueline Martin is thrilled to be part of her first season here at the Stephenville Festival Theatre, and is excited to perform all the Elton John, 50’s/60’s pop, and hilarious musical theatre satire you could ever want. Previous credits include: Queen in The Life (Call it a Day Productions), The Forgotten in The Tin Forest (National Theatre of Scotland), Wendla in Spring Awakening, Fräulein Kost in Cabaret, Maureen in Rent, Natalie in Next to Normal (Lower Ossington Theatre), Joanne in Godspell, Mabel in Aleck Bell: a new Canadian musical (IANA Theatre company).

 

David Michael Moote
David Michael Moote is a multitalented artist from London, Ontario. He is thrilled to be performing in the Stephenville Theatre Festival and is so grateful to be surrounded by such wonderful, talented, and generous people in and outside of the theatre this summer. Follow your heart! Theatre Credits (Selected):  A Christmas Carol, Chariots Of Fire (The Grand Theatre London, Ontario 2017/18 season); Oh Canada What A Feeling! (Princess Of Wales Theatre); Jesus Christ Superstar (Hart House Theatre); Next To Normal (The LOT). Film and TV Credits (Selected): The Strain (FX); Dead Rush (People’s Choice Award Canadian Film Festival); Lariat (Winner Toronto 48hr Film Festival). Other: Graduate of the BMus Voice Performance Program at McGill University. Lead singer of Operus a theatre metal band signed by Dark Star Records/Sony Entertainment.

Michelle Nash
Michelle is a Toronto-based performer originally from Ottawa, Ontario. Last season at STF, she appeared in Rock n’ Fables, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and Blue Champagne. Recent credits include: the North American Tours of Disenchanted (Swing), Cannibal (Polly Pry) and Evil Dead: The Musical (Linda, u/s Annie/Shelley), Cinderella in Into the Woods (Hart House Theatre), Mary in Mary Poppins, Maria in The Sound of Music and Fiona in Shrek (Lower Ossington Theatre).

 

Shane O’Regan
Shane O’Regan is a Pianist/Musical Director based in Toronto. Originally from Halifax, NS, Shane studied piano privately with Paul Simons and Oksana Zotova at the Martime Conservatory of Performing Arts. He is a graduate of both the Randolph Academy for the Performing Arts’ College Program and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland’s MA Musical Theatre Performance program. Recent work on the piano includes Resident Pianist at Joe Allen Restaurant (Covent Garden, London), Vocal Arranger for COLLABRO (Winners of Britain’s Got Talent, 2014), Arranger/Pianist for Andrée Bernard’s House on Fire (Union Theatre, London), and Musical Director/Pianist for December Songs (Theatre Passe Muraille, Toronto). Shane has recently relocated to Toronto after a year as Manager of the Bella Rose Arts Centre in Halifax.

Travis Paul
Travis is a Toronto based performer, originally born in Grand Falls, NL. His Mother is from Bell Island and Father from Point Leamington, which makes him ecstatic to share this season with family from across Newfoundland. Travis received his Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Musical Theatre from Viterbo University in LaCrosse, Wisconsin. He has performed in Canada, USA, Singapore, Qatar and most recently returned home from a month long contract in Dubai. Favourite credits include Bobby in A Chorus Line, Action in West Side Story, Chad in All Shook Up and Claude in HAIR. Thank you to all the friends and family who have come out to support me this season and to the absolutely incredible team at the Stephenville Theatre Festival for your talents, work, passion, drive and for keeping the arts alive here on the Rock.

Andrew Perry
It’s Andrews first season here at the Stephenville Festival! He is blessed to be working with such a talented cast and crew. Notable credits: Jo Jo-The Life, Chino-WSS, Judas-JCSS, St.Jimmy-American Idiot, Collins-Rent, Mary Sunshine-Chicago, Otto-Spring Awakening, Male Swing-Sister Act. All the thanks to mom and dad for always having my back!

 

 

Caleb Pinsent
Caleb Pinsent is a second-year university student at Grenfell campus. This is his first year working with The Stephenville Theatre Festival, but he has enjoyed the technical side of theatrical performance in the past while a student of Stephenville High School. He is also a dedicated musician.

 

 

Jeremy Pynn
Jeremy Pynn is a post-production audio engineer and live sound technician. He graduated CNA’s Sound Recording and Production program in Stephenville, NL. Immediately upon graduation, he joined STF, working on most all production’s that 2016 season, including but not limited to A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline, and A Perfect Wedding. Shortly After, he moved to St. John’s and joined Canadian AV Inc. where he worked countless gigs, including corporate venues, conferences, and rock and roll shows. Some notable talents he worked with during that time include – the Trailer Park Boys, Hey Rosetta, The Wiggles, and Celtic Connection. Jeremy now joins his second season of STF as head of sound, and couldn’t be happier to be back.

Sam Rotchford
Sam, mom of Raylin and Sarah, is a native of Stephenville. No stranger to theatre, she has been involved with Bay Theatre and Stephenville Theatre Festival onstage and backstage since her youth. She also worked with the Stephenville Middle School drama group and did a costume workshop at their 2016 drama festival. Sam is happy to be back as Head of Costumes for the Festival’s 39th season. She’s looking forward to a fun and exciting summer.

 

Bryden Rutherford
This is Bryden Rutherford’s debut with the Stephenville Theatre Festival. He is very excited to be a part of the Festival’s productions of Urinetown as Hot Blades Harry, and Cinderella: A Rat-ical Retelling as Claws!  He is a graduate of the Musical Theatre Performance program at Sheridan Institute and has performed in New Brunswick, New York, Toronto and he just got back from a tour in Dubai. Some of his favourite credits are Bert in Mary Poppins, Laurie in Little Women, and Smee in Peter and the Starcatcher. Bryden would like to thank the amazing creative team for this opportunity and the cast for an amazing theatrical experience and he hopes everyone enjoys the shows!

Nathan Sartore
Nathan Sartore is thrilled to be returning to the Stephenville Theatre Festival this summer after appearing in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and Blue Champagne last year. A Vancouver native, Nathan will be entering his final year in Sheridan College’s Music Theatre Performance program this fall. Selected credits include: Baby John in West Side Story (Rainbow Stage); Legally Blonde, Bye Bye Birdie (TUTS); Oklahoma!, Hello, Dolly! (RCMT); and Trevor Graydon in Thoroughly Modern Millie (HWSS). Special thanks to Heather and Michele for this opportunity.

 

Victoria Scully
Victoria Scully is a Toronto based performer who focuses mainly on her love of Musical Theatre. Born in Halifax, NS, and raised in London, ON, Victoria is a graduate of St Clair College’s Music Theatre Performance program. Theatre credits: Lead Performance Vocalist onboard Princess Cruiselines’ Regal Princess, LOT Credits: Anita in West Side Story, Cathy Hiatt in The Last Five Years, Ilse in Spring Awakening, Eva Peron in Evita, Ensemble/Sheila u/s in HAIR, Select Credits: Lead Vocalist (Carole King Review – Marion Abbott Productions), Ensemble (Les Miserable -Confidential Musical Theatre Project), Carmen Diaz (FAME – Creativiva), Mother (Eating French – Inspirato Theatre Festival), Connie Von Evuhl (Warp Speed: A Sci-Fi Musical – Barrow Theatre NYC), Cassie (A Chorus Line – Capital Theatre), Shakespeare (The Frogs – St Clair College), Mrs.Kirby (You Can’t Take It With You – St Clair College), Kit Kat Girl (Cabaret – Chrysler Theatre), Featured Soloist (Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well – St Clair College). Victoria has also had the privilege of performing in multiple cabarets/stages in NYC, including the infamous Amateur Night at The Apollo. She looks forward to continuing her career internationally with the help of her friends, family, and dog Eleanor.

Michele Shuster
Originally from Winnipeg Manitoba, Michele is thrilled to be back in Newfoundland after spending the year performing all over Canada. Her past choreography credits include Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Blue Champagne, and Tales of Ti-Jean (Stephenville Theatre Festival), Little Shop of Horrors, Avenue Q, Junie B Jones, Anything Goes, Fancy Nancy, Spamalot, and The Sound of Music (The LOT), Into The Woods (Hart House), and Back In ’59 (Asst. Choreographer/ Showboat Theatre.) She is the recipient of Best Choreography at Candance and The Young Choreographers Award at Shinedance. Michele is beyond excited to have her debut as a director here in Stephenville and hopes you enjoy the shows! XOXO

Age (Aga) E. Smies
Age (Aga) E. Smies received his initial music training in the Netherlands where he graduated with degrees in Clarinet and Music Education.  After his arrival in Canada, he completed a Clarinet performance degree in Clarinet at Western and obtained all required certification needed to teach in Elementary and Secondary School.  He also enrolled in the Canadian Forces (R) as a Director of Music, attended the Forces School of Music and passed his Captain qualifying exam with the RCA band. Over the many years, he was a member of the London Promenade Orchestra, The Windsor Symphony, the Lancaster Big Band, The I’ll Big Band, several pit bands, and as of late the Corner Brook Jazz Ensemble and the West Coast Jazz Quintet.

Andrew Soutter
Graduate of Sheridan College/University of Toronto Mississauga’s joint Theatre and Drama Studies acting program. Toronto: Moritz – Spring Awakening, Lord Farquaad – SHREK, Angel – RENT, Patsy – Spamalot (LOT); Nick – Fame, Professor Bhaer – Little Women (Firstact); Bobby – Urinetown (Stageworks). Kingston: Enjolras – Les Miserables, Kurt – Sound of Music, Baby John – West Side Story (Grand Theatre); and Oliver – Oliver! (Thousand Islands Playhouse). Andrew wishes to thank his friends and family for their continued love and support. Paciencia y fe.

 

STF Office Students
Stephenville Theatre Festival is fortunate to have three students working with us at the Festival’s head office this summer: Shania Marche, Claire Robbins and Sophie Bennett. In addition to the office, they can also be found at the Arts and Culture Centre and various local events promoting the Festival.

 

 

Christopher Vaughan
Christopher is very happy to be returning for his fourth season with Stephenville Theatre Festival. He likes tackling the challenges that come along with being General Manager, and considers STF to be a vital asset to the local community. Previously, he was Editor/Manager of The Georgian newspaper, which was named Best All-Round Newspaper in its class at the 2013 Canadian Community Newspaper Awards. When not working, Christopher volunteers with such groups as the Stephen Awards Committee and Stephenville’s Friendly Invasion Storyboard Committee.

 

Alexander Vincent
Alex is very happy to be joining STF for his second time, this year as the Second Space stage manager. He is a recent graduate of Cambrian College in the Theatre Arts – Technical Production program. Originally from Ottawa, Ontario, he is very excited to be back in Stephenville this summer and hopes everyone enjoys the shows!

 

 

Nelson White
Nelson White returns to the Stephenville Festival to handle the guitar duties in Rocketman. Nelson was born in Stephenville and recently retired after 31 years of teaching music at Stephenville Primary School. Nelson first worked with the festival during the 1980’s playing guitar for Man of La Mancha, Godspell, Evita and Ain’t Misbehavin’. He was musical director for Hank Williams: His Life and Times and also worked on Swing and Jive and various country shows. He is looking forward to returning to the festival this season.

 

Robert Wilkinson
Robert is a current student at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, located in Glasgow, where he is completing a Master’s Degree in Musical Direction. He is very grateful for the opportunity to take a break from his studies and to come here to with this incredible team of artists and producers. Robert is the co-founder of Tool Kit Inc. (a company devoted to the creation of new Musical Theatre), a position which he shares with the one and only fabulous Heather Braaten. Robert has worked as a music director (in Toronto, New York and now throughout the UK), a composer, vocal coach, and arranger. Select Theatre Credits include Spring Awakening, RENT, Avenue Q, Evita, (Lower Ossington Theatre), Full House The Musical Parody, Katdashians: Break The Musical (Off Broadway for Medium Face Productions), Chess and Women On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown (Royal Conservatoire of Scotland). Many thanks to this amazing cast and band for their hard work and dedication!