SARA PHOENIX (Executive Artistic Director) Sara serves as Executive Artistic Director for Theatre Tulsa. She holds a BFA in Theatre from the University of Oklahoma and has been involved in theatre across the country as an actress, teacher, director, and choreographer. Most recently for TT, Sara directed and/or choreographed Cats, Les Misérables, The Sound of Music, Legally Blonde and Oliver! She has performed in and directed productions nationally and has traveled as a director and actress in Europe. She serves on the Executive Board of Directors for the American Association of Community Theatre and is Chairman of their Education Committee. This summer Sara organized and facilitated the National Youth Theatre Summit and she looks forward to serving as a facilitator for the Oklahoma Community Theatre Association’s Artistic/ Managing Directors Conference this fall. She is also a certified theatre adjudicator for theatre festivals all over the country. Sara is an associate member of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers.
JARROD KOPP (Managing Director) Jarrod has been directing for Theatre Tulsa for several years, most recently this season’s Peter and the Starcatcher. Last season Jarrod directed Don’t Dress for Dinner and Miss Saigon. Other previous credits include: The 39 Steps, A Few Good Men, Mere Mortals and Others, Inspecting Carol, and Reverse Psychology and assistant directing Les Misérables. Jarrod has won 4 TATE (Tulsa Awards for Theatre Excellence) for four years in a row. Jarrod has also been a longtime performer with Theatre Tulsa, appearing in TT’s productions of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged), The Complete History of America (Abridged), Laughter on the 23rd Floor, The Pitmen Painters, and Boeing-Boeing.
LAURA DOSSETT (Education Director) Laura is committed to education outreach of the program and her work as a teaching artist. Laura previously directed Elf, Jr., Cinderella, and Treasure Island has also stage managed seven other education productions for Theatre Tulsa. She recently completed a tour of Puss in Boots and Other Cat Tails as part of the Harwelden Institute of the Arts. Laura received her BFA in theatre from Emporia State University in Kansas. There she was the artistic director and coordinator of the Educational Theatre Company, a small non-profit organization that performed touring shows written, directed, and performed by members of the company. Laura has been involved in over 40 productions in just the past six years doing a little bit of everything – stage management, directing, writing, costuming, and construction and performing.
MELISSA SPARKS (Technical Director) Melissa is from Biloxi, Mississippi where she started performing in community theatre and worked on productions in college while studying broadcasting and coaching the equestrian team. Melissa earned a Bachelor’s of Arts in Communications from Mississippi State University. After college, she worked at Stagedoor Manor and on Carnival Cruise Lines and moved to Tulsa in 2011. Since moving to Tulsa, Melissa has worked with Theatre Tulsa, Clark Youth Theatre, Heller Theatre Co., Midwestern Theatre Troupe, and Odeum Theatre Company. She now works full time as the Company Stage Manager for Theatre Tulsa and as the General Manager of Clark Youth Theatre.
Current Directors and Choreographers:
JENNIFER ALDEN Before arriving in Tulsa, Jennifer danced with several contemporary dance companies including BodyVox and Polaris in Portland. While there she also studied with Oregon Ballet Theatre. Jennifer danced and performed with Kinetic Images Dance Company as a principal member and was a soloist in several featured contemporary roles. Prior to this, Jennifer studied at the University of Oregon and Eugene Ballet. In addition, Jennifer studied at Danskervelt School of Dance in Copenhagen, Denmark learning the Bournonville style of ballet. Jennifer is now Co-Artistic Director, Choreographer and Company Manger of Portico Dans Theatre and was bestowed the honor of being the first Chairman of the newly formed, Living Arts Contemporary Dance Committee. Jennifer is an executive Board Member with Living Arts, serves on the Barre committee of the Tulsa Ballet and is an active member of the Urbanist group of TYPRO’s.
ASHLEE ELMORE Currently serves as music director for Theatre Tulsa education productions. Ashlee Elmore served as the Artistic Director of theTulsa Children’s Chorus from 2012 to 2015. She completed her Bachelor’s of Vocal Music Education Degree in Tulsa in 2001, at which point she went on to teach public school in Washington County. In addition to teaching public school, Ms. Elmore has owned her own academy of private music instruction. Ms. Elmore is nationally certified in Kodaly, a method of music instruction, and completed her masters degree in music education in 2010 at the University of Oklahoma, under the direction of International Kodaly Mogul, Dr. Joy Nelson. Ms. Elmore helped found the Bartlesville Children’s Choir in 2007.
MARK FRIE (Miss Saigon Vocal Director) Mark has performed throughout North America in musicals, operas, and concerts. He made his solo debut at Carnegie Hall in 2006 with the New England Philharmonic and has enjoyed performing with symphonies across the country. He has performed and directed shows in such venues as Radio City Music Hall, Carnegie Hall, North Shore Music Theatre (Boston), Music Theatre Wichita, Casa Manana Theatre in Ft. Worth, Arvada Center for the Arts (Denver), Bass Hall (Ft. Worth), and Fair Park Music Hall (Dallas). Directing credits include Oklahoma!, Forever Plaid, Anything Goes, Cinderella, Gentleman Prefer Blondes, Greater Tuna (with original stars Joe Sears and Jaston Williams), Rent, Cabaret, and Seussical the Musical. Favorite roles include Val Jean in Les Miserables, Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof, Jud in Oklahoma, Smudge in Forever Plaid, Papageno in The Magic Flute. Currently, Mark serves as the Executive Director of the Broken Arrow Performing Arts Center and is also the president and CEO of the BA PAC Foundation.
CHRISTINA JENKINS Christina received her BA in Communication Arts/Drama and her Masters in Education from Oral Roberts University. She taught the advanced theatre and stagecraft classes at Union’s 9th and 10th Grade Center for 5½ years and choreographed Union High School’s musicals the past nine years. Christina has also choreographed for Clark Youth Theatre, American Theatre Company, an animated movie, several high schools, and show choirs. Her Theatre Tulsa choreography credits include Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Elf, Jr. and Cats. Christina has also directed several plays including Bye Bye Birdie, The Miracle Worker, Rumors, The Diary of Anne Frank, and The Crucible.
ERIN SCARBERRY Erin Scarberry is an actor, director, designer and teacher based in Tulsa. She has spent the last eight years as a staff member at Heller & Clark Theatres. Erin’s productions have garnered seven Tulsa Area Theatre Excellence (TATE) Awards, the most recent being The God of Carnage for Odeum Theatre Company and for Heller Theatre’s production of The School For Lies.
TONY SHANKS Tony has started two independent theatre companies and worked in both New York City Off-Broadway and Los Angeles at the Fringe Festival. For Theatre Tulsa he has directed critrically-acclaimed productions of Glengarry Glen Ross and Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Other credits as director include suburbia, Hair, Bodies, Rest & Motion, The Bomb, Naked Theatre, The Drinking Game and numerous shorts.
LAURA SKOCH Laura is very excited to be working with Theatre Tulsa again, where she recently directed the Broadway Academy production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. She is an actor, director, and educator, currently teaching in the Theatre Department at the University of Tulsa. Previous roles with Theatre Tulsa include Sonya in Vanya and Sonya and Masha and Spike and all the ladies in The 39 Steps. Other directing credits include A Doll’s House and Seascape at Hubbard Hall in Cambridge, New York, where she also played Sonia in Uncle Vanya and Viola in Twelfth Night. Laura was a New York Innovative Theatre Awards nominee for Best Actress for her performance of Ouisa in Six Degrees of Separation.
KARA STAIGER Kara received her BFA from Oklahoma City University in Musical Theatre and MA in Education from ORU. For Theatre Tulsa she as choreographed Cinderella and Will Rogers Follies. Favorite choreography shows include Urinetown (Playhouse Tulsa), Rocky Horror Show (ATC), Nanyehi (Cherokee Nation), Young Frankenstein (TCC), …Forum (TCC), Zombies from the Beyond (ATC).
BRENNAN PETERS Brennan ‘Pete’ Peters is a Tulsa native who has always had a passion for sharing his passions. Growing up, Pete was a competitive trampolinist, power tumbler, and cheerleader. As a teenager, he began coaching younger athletes and quickly gained notoriety as a talented choreographer, winning the National Cheerleaders Association’s Innovative Choreography Award at the age of 19. After earning a BA in Musical Theatre from the University of Tulsa, he enjoyed a 3-year career performing aboard the world’s largest cruise ships as an Acrobat, Aerialist and Singer/Dancer. During his time with Royal Caribbean, Brennan was appointed to several supervisor positions, including Acrobat Captain, Aerial Coordinator, and Dance Captain. Afterward, Pete began teaching dance, theatre, and tumbling to children of various age groups at the acclaimed Front & Center for Performing Arts in Springfield, New Jersey. He then was hired as a ‘swing’ for the Broadway National Tour of “Bring It On: The Musical”. Immediately following, Pete continued his tenure as a swing for the International and National Tours of “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” during which he was selected as Fight Captain and Assistant Dance Captain, respectively. Since then, Pete has begun seeking an MFA in Musical Theater from the prestigious Boston Conservatory at Berklee College of Music, a He has enjoyed choreographing and directing multiple shows in Tulsa including Theatre Tulsa’s “Cabaret,” and “Peter and the Starcatcher,” Theatre Pop’s “The Wild Party,”. He is fortunate enough to be a regular guest artist at the University of Tulsa in their Terpsichore Master Class series. As always, Pete is eternally grateful for the opportunities afforded to him and loves that he gets to be a part of this production with his best friend in the whole world, Karlena Riggs. Paciencia y Fe!
KARLENA RIGGS: Karlena is a teacher and performer based in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She attended Booker T. Washington High School and the University of Tulsa, where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Musical Theatre. She also studied Musical Theatre Performance at the Boston Conservatory for one year. She has been performing in the Tulsa community for nearly 20 years, and some of her favorite roles include Paulette in Legally Blonde, Lady of the Lake in Spamalot, Baker’s Wife in Into the Woods, and Fraulein Schneider in Cabaret. Outside of the theatre, Karlena has taught special education for four years, and looks forward to attending OU-Tulsa in the fall to work on a Master’s degree in Public Administration and non-profit management. She is also very excited to be presenting an original work with Peter Brennan at the Tulsa Summerstage festival in June.
VERN STEFANIC Vern is a journalist, magazine editor (AAPG Explorer), college scriptwriting instructor, theatrical director and nationally recognized playwright. As a theatrical director he has staged over 100 productions for a variety of theatrical companies, including award-winning productions of Clybourne Park and Boeing Boeing. Other directing projects have included A Few Doors Down, The Pitmen Painters, The Last Five Years, The Laramie Project, The Real Thing, Noises Off, Closer, Karaoke: The Brand New Unoriginal Musical, Nickel and Dimed, Laughter on the 23rd Floor, Listen to My Heart: The Songs of David Friedman, Company, Pippin, A Streetcar Named Desire and I Love You, You¹re Perfect, Now Change. Writing credits include all works for the Tulsa Signature Symphony’s “Composer’s Alive” series, Jasna Cries, Sherry’s Turn and two musicals of note written with colleague Doug Smith: Tom Sawyer: A Musical Adventure and Miracle on 34th Street: A Musical Adaptation, which has enjoyed a national tour.
LISA STEFANIC Lisa has directed for most of the theatre companies in Tulsa, including Tulsa Community College. For TCC she has directed Cabaret, Once Upon a Mattress, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum and Five Women Wearing the Same Dress. She is currently directing Will Rogers Follies for Theatre Tulsa. Lisa is also a performer with the Signature Symphony, and performed “Ellis Island” (with original music) and “100 Years of Oklahoma Music”. Lisa is a well known actress with local companies and has also appeared in several films; the most popular being “UHF” with Weird Al Yankovic. In addition, Lisa has done numerous commercials and voiceovers for radio and TV, as well as sung in American Theatre Company’s Eddie and the Eclectics, and was involved with the Arts and Humanities program ‘Artists in Residence’ for 6 years. Lisa loves to travel, is married to writer/director Vern Stefanic, and has four children, all who have supported her in her desire for better arts in Tulsa.
JEREMY STEVENS Jeremy has been a dedicated music teacher for many years, and he is dedicated to nurturing children into being creative thinkers and passionate artists. Jeremy is currently the Middle School Choir Director for Union Public Schools’ 8th Grade Center. He is excited to be working with such talented people in this great city. Jeremy has been in and directed several great productions around the Tulsa area, including Cats, 9 to 5, Les Misérables, 13, The Sound Of Music; I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change; and Legally Blonde for Theatre Tulsa, as well as The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Immigrant and A Christmas Carol for American Theatre Company.
CATHERINE RATLIFF (Next to Normal Music Director) Catherine is blessed to operate a full voice and piano studio in Tulsa, Oklahoma where she shares her passion for music with students of all ages, levels and genres. Catherine holds credentials from the University of Oklahoma, the University of Kansas and the New England Conservatory. Catherine has served as music director for Theater Tulsa’s productions of Oliver, Legally Blonde,The Little Mermaid, Bye Bye Birdie, Next to Normal, and Cabaret.. Catherine made her onstage debut with Theater Tulsa in the role of Madame Thenardier in the 2014 production of Les Misérables. Catherine can also be found onstage singing with Tulsa Opera.
NORAH SWEENEY Norah is thrilled to work on this production once again with Theatre Tulsa, after directing “Twelfth Night” last summer. Norah recently returned to Tulsa after working as an actress around the country. She was last seen as Suzy in Wait Until Dark with American Theatre Company and Stella in A Streetcar Named Desire with Playhouse Tulsa. Norah also teaches theatre to college students. MFA: FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training. Here favorite production is, “my daughter Rosario.