Eric Nightengale
Dramaturg, 24 Hour Playfest

Eric is the co-artistic director of Anthropological Theatricals, and a founding member of Concrete Temple Theatre in New York City and The Acme Corporation in Baltimore. He served as artistic director of 78th Street Theatre Lab from 1995 thru 2008.  New York credits include work with Circle Repertory Theatre, The Acting Company, Circle in the Square, Cherry Lane Theatre, Ensemble Studio Theatre, 45 Bleecker, The Barrow Group, HERE, and Classic Stage Company.  Eric has served as Artistic Director for Actors Repertory Theatre in Chicago and as Associate Artistic Director for the Developing Artists Series at the Drama League of New York, developing work at the New Harmony Project, the Sewanee Writers Conference, Drop Forge & Tool, Telluride Playwrights Festival, and the Last Frontier Theatre Conference. Radio drama credits include work broadcast nationally over NPR affiliate stations, and in the UK over BBC channel 4. His work at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe has resulted in three Fringe First awards, eight published scripts, four adaptations for BBC radio, two Best Ensemble awards, and a London transfer.

Quae Simpson
Choreographer – Dance Intensive

Quae Simpson is a native of Baltimore with over 20 year’s experience performing, directing, choreographing and musical directing nationally and internationally. He is the CEO /Executive Artistic Director of Q Entertainment a multifaceted entertainment company and a teaching artist and resident choreographer at Carver Center for the Arts and Technology in Baltimore. For the past two summers Quae has held the position as director/ choreographer at the Stagedoor Manor training center in Loch Sheldrake New York, and is excited to work at the Stagedoor Manor Studios in New York City this fall.

Chris Armbrister
Acting Intensive Instructor

Chris is the Director of Theatrical Programming (overseeing show selection, staffing & casting) for the internationally acclaimed Stagedoor Manor in NY where he just celebrated 20 years collaborating with an amazing group of staff & campers. From 2007 thru 2017, Chris was also the producer & artistic director for Thin Air Theatre Company, building the company’s reputation to a nationally recognized level as a small regional professional theatre by producing both original play and some of Broadway’s greatest hits. Over the years Chris has also enjoyed freelance directing with theaters like Orlando Repertory Theatre in Florida, Sierra Repertory Theatre in California and Priscilla Beach Theatre up near Boston (where he will be returning in the fall of 2019 to direct one of his favorite shows, Young Frankenstein). Other favorite Directing credits include: Les Miserables; Laramie Project; Comedy of Errors; The Toxic Avenger, & The Last 5 Years (for which he was nominated for a BroadwayWorld.com Best Director Award). Chris holds an MFA in Theatre from the University of Alabama & is a member of East Tennessee State University’s Alumni Hall of Fame for his “Contributions to the Development of Theatre in America” as founding producer for Thin Air Theatre Company, East Tennessee Children’s Theatre and Vision Factory (in Los Angeles).

Rob Schalow
Artistic Director

As a member of the Stagedoor Manor family for 11 years, Rob is currently Director of Education/Resident Director for this top theatrical training center. Hailing from the Midwest, his career has taken him across the country working as a freelance director & actor.

Directing credits include:

  • The creation of the High School Edition of Evil Dead: The Musical
  • In The Heights
  • Beauty & The Beast
  • The Toxic Avenger
  • Urinetown
  • Crimes of the Heart
  • Rock of Ages.

Acting credits include:

  • Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street – Broadway World Award Nominee (Sweeney)
  • Tick, Tick…BOOM! (Jon)
  • Phantom (Phantom)
  • Chicago (Billy Flynn)
  • The Fantasticks (El Gallo)
  • Taming of the Shrew (Petruchio)
Marie Nicole
Acting Intensive Instructor

Marie Nicole is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of High Point University where she studied Performance Theatre and Vocal Music. A proud member of Actor’s Equity Association, Marie has performed with many professional theatres such as The Growing Stage, Centenary Stage, and Allenberry Playhouse. When she is not performing, Marie is helping children develop a passion for the arts. She has been teaching music, theatre, and dance to children ages 3-17 for over a decade. In 2016, Marie joined the artistic staff of Stagedoor Manor as a Director/Choreographer. Currently, Marie serves as the Director of Education for Phoenix Performing Arts Academy. She looks forward to the opportunity to share her passion with Stagedoor Manor Studios!

Samantha Massell
Vocal Instructor/Music Director

Samantha starred as Hodel in the acclaimed Broadway revival of Fiddler on the Roof and recreated the starring role of Rebecca in the lauded world premiere reviSal of Steven Schwartz and Charles’ Strouse’s Rags. A Native New Yorker, Samantha made her Broadway debut at age 12 in Baz Luhrmann’s production of Puccini’s La Boheme. On the small screen, she has appeared on The Good Fight and Elementary, and had a recurring role on Stephen King’s Mr. Mercedes, and also has been seen on an extensive number of commercials. She has been seen regionally in the US premiere of Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame at both Paper Mill Playhouse and La Jolla Playhouse (and is also featured on the cast recording), and a number of shows at the St. Louis MUNY, including Aladdin (Jasmine), Bye Bye Birdie (Ursula), and Into the Woods (Rapunzel). She’s a regular of the New York cabaret scene. Samantha is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of The University of Michigan, where she double majored in Musical Theatre and English. www.samanthamassell.com @smassellsings

Jen Curfman
Workshop Guest Artist

Jennifer Curfman is a NYC-based director, actor, and Associate Artistic Director of The CRY HAVOC Company. As a director and associate director, Jen’s credits include: Lincoln Center Originals, Pioneer Theatre, New York Shakespeare Exchange, Vital Theater, FringeNYC/Encores, Live from Lincoln Center, Joe’s Pub, and Primary Stages. She has been seen onstage throughout the US, with companies including the Shakespeare Theater of NJ, Great Lakes Theater Festival, and NYC Opera. She has taught acting, directing, and Shakespeare with NSKI (Oslo, Norway), Hunts Point Children’s Shakespeare Ensemble (Public Theater), Stagedoor Manor, and the New School for Drama. Jennifer is a 2017 SDCF Observership Fellow, a member of Lincoln Center Directors Lab and Actors Equity Association, and an Associate Member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society. Jen holds a B.F.A. from NYU.

Derek Speedey
Guest Artist/Moderator

Derek Speedy recently graduated from Harvard University as an inaugural class member of the Theatre, Dance, and Media major. At Harvard he performed in Dogfight (Eddie Birdlace), Assassins (John Hinckley Jr.), and Into the Woods (Baker), among others. Derek was also a four-year cast member of the famous Hasty Pudding Theatricals, this country’s oldest extant theatre company. As a cast member, Derek performed an 8-show-per-week professional schedule, toured in both NYC and Bermuda, and performed for and with celebrities such as Amy Poehler, Chris Pratt, Ryan Reynolds, and more. Derek is now an actor/singer/teacher based in New York and is so excited to be involved with Stagedoor Manor Studios!

Justin Amellio
Educational Consultant

Justin currently serves as Associate Professor of Theatre at Indiana University South Bend where he started their new musical theatre B.F.A. program and also specializes in teaching directing and acting. A proud graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University’s M.F.A. program in Theatre/ Movement Pedagogy and an Associate Member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society. Justin is so very excited to be working with Stagedoor Studios on this college audition workshop. Favorite professional credits include; A Chorus Line, Bare: A Pop
Opera (2013 RTCC award for Best Musical and Direction), [title of show] (2011 RTCC award for
Best Musical), Pageant and Boy From Oz at Richmond Triangle Players; A Chorus Line (Co-
Director/Co-Choreographer) and Anything Goes (Director/Co-Choreographer) at Riverside
Center for the Performing Arts; Lend Me a Tenor with One Theatre Co. in Chicago; I Love You,
You’re Perfect, Now Change; 13 at Stagedoor Manor. Justin has served as a guest director at
Christopher Newport University on Legally Blonde, Steel Pier and The Virginia premiere of The
Single Girls Guide.

Maggie Samen

  • Program Manager/Owner-Producer Stagedoor Manor Studios
  • Associate Producer, Stagedoor Manor
  • Maggie has been on staff at Stagedoor Manor for 10 years
  • Master of Science and Environmental Studies/Antioch University of New England
  • BA/Wheaton College

Hayley Samen

  • Owner/Producer Stagedoor Manor Studios
  • Stagedoor Manor Office
  • Masters in Education/Special Education
  • Antioch University of New England
  • BA Sociology/Hofstra University

Joel Samen

  • Head of Marketing/Owner-Producer Stagedoor Manor Studios
  • Owner/Producer Stagedoor Manor Studios
  • MS-MBA in Information Systems/Boston University School of Management
  • BA/Bowdoin College
  • Director, Digital Media Buying and Analytics

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