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Raymond Bobgan (Executive Artistic Director)
This is Raymond Bobgan’s 12th season in the leadership position at Cleveland Public Theatre (CPT). Raymond specializes in working through an ensemble process to create new performances that are bold, multilayered, and highly physical. Raymond’s work has been seen in Romania, Brazil, Denmark, Serbia, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and Canada and has been featured in American Theatre Magazine, Canadian Theatre Review, Theatre Journal, and in Lisa Wolford’s book Grotowski’s Objective Drama Research. Raymond has created many works for CPT including: Red Ash Mosaic; Feefer Rising, with Faye Hargate; Rusted Heart Broadcast; Insomnia: The Waking of Herselves, with Holly Holsinger and Chris Seibert; Cut to Pieces, with Chris Seibert; Blue Sky Transmission: A Tibetan Book of the Dead, co-produced by CPT and La MaMa ETC (NY); and The Confessions of Punch and Judy, co-produced by CPT, NaCl (NY) and Number 11 Theatre (Toronto), which was published in New Canadian Theatre Volume 9.
While serving as Executive Artistic Director at Cleveland Public Theatre, Raymond initiated the Student Theatre Enrichment Program (STEP), a job-training theatre program for low-income teens, Y-Haven Theatre Project which engages formerly homeless men in writing and performing theatre, Teatro Publico de Cleveland, CPT’s resident Latino theatre company, and Station Hope, a community arts festival honoring Cleveland’s social justice heritage and exploring contemporary issues of social justice. Raymond is currently working with Arabic speaking communities to create theatre projects in Arabic and English. Raymond and Cleveland Core Ensemble’s production of Red Ash Mosaic is currently touring nationally to New Orleans, Detroit, and Columbus.
In 2017, Raymond received the Cisgender Ally Award at Cleveland’s Transgender Day of Remembrance, and in 2015, received Equality Ohio’s Ally Award. He received the 2017 Governor’s Award for the Arts in Ohio and in 2014 became the first recipient of the Cleveland Arts Prize in the discipline of Theatre. He currently serves on the National New Play Network Executive Committee, Theatre Communications Group Board of Directors, and is the Chair of the Board of the Gordon Square Arts District. Raymond is a two-time recipient of the Creative Workforce Fellowship (2010 for theatre, 2014 for music composition), a program of the Community Partnership for Arts and Culture. Under his leadership, CPT has eliminated significant debt, run consistent operating surpluses, and formed both a Building Reserve and an Innovation Reserve. This financial advancement was a result of mission-focused programming including a strong emphasis on supporting new works and local artists, a bold aesthetic vision, and CPT’s education and engagement programs.
Molly Andrews-Hinders (Artistic Associate)
Molly Andrews-Hinders is a performer, composer, educator and activist. She has been performing and teaching as an independent artist at CPT since 2011. She has taught in CPT’s Brick City Theatre Program, Women’s Voices and the Student Theatre Enrichment Program (STEP), where she most recently co-directed alongside Adam Seeholzer. Molly has also taught at the Musical Theater Project, Near West Theatre and Talespinner Children’s Theatre. In addition to her work as a theatre educator, Molly is a certified Pilates instructor and has worked at several studios in Cleveland.
Molly has created many original works for CPT shows. Her original compositions were featured in Station Hope (2017); Light the Lights, Ol’ Moses CLE! (A Wild Holiday Romp); Air Waves (Part Three of the Elements Cycle); Earth Plays (Part Two of the Elements Cycle); When the Moon Was Green Cheese, The Cracker Maker Was King (Big Box 2013) and Soliciting for Change (Big Box 2011), as well as numerous STEP shows. As an actor, Molly has been featured in 44 Plays For 44 Presidents, Standing on Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays, Rusted Heart Broadcast and Akarui.
She is a proud graduate from Wright State University, earning a BFA in Acting.
Walter Bivens (Physical Operation Manager)
Walter Bivens was born and raised in Detroit, MI. After graduating high school, Walter attended Michigan State University, where he not only kept busy with his studies but also dove into leadership. His acting debut, in the original play Calvary, sparked his interest in directing. He then went on to co-direct a weekly student production, 1825, that embodied education and entertainment speaking to student issues at Michigan State. Walter was the leader of an on-campus organization, the Advantage, which helped produce 1825 along with providing various resources to students. In addition to leadership, Walter also became known as a motivational and informative speaker, and has dedicated his time to honing his craft for over 13 years. He spoke at many events on Michigan State’s campus, and he also traveled to numerous K-12 public schools, universities, organizations, conferences, and fortune 1000 companies around the country. In 2013, Walter graduated from Michigan State with a Bachelor’s degree in economics. After graduation, Walter became an academic advisor and continued to assist students in achieving academic success. Walter’s journey has led him to multiple experiences of streamlining systems, facility management, and the development of other public speakers. He is a successful business owner and has continued to challenge himself by diving into the world of computer science. His passions for speaking, technology, and the development of people are what drives Walter every day.
Adrien Brizzolara (Audience Engagement Associate)
Adrien grew up in Bayonne, NJ just across the water from Manhattan. She graduated summa cum laude from Fordham University with a BA in math and worked in data analysis and finance while studying voice on the side. She performed as a soloist and with ensembles throughout the NY metropolitan area, including several choral performances at Carnegie Hall. Adrien discovered her passion for theatre in 2011 after moving to Northwest Indiana where she became heavily involved in the theatre community, both onstage and behind the scenes. She served on the board of Portage Community Theatre (Portage, IN) as Membership Director and Treasurer, was a Marketing Coordinator and Production Manager for productions at 4th Street Theater (Chesterton, IN) and pursued graduate studies in Arts & Entertainment Administration at Valparaiso University.
Ashante Green (Custodian)
Ashante Green was born in Cleveland, Ohio, on the east side. While growing up, he attended the Cleveland School of the Arts, majoring in Photography and Theatrical Arts. He was introduced to Cleveland Public Theatre through Y-Haven, a program designed for men who are wanting and trying to get their lives back on course. He joined CPT in 2015 through the partnership between CPT and Y-Haven.
Denis M. Griesmer (Chief Financial Officer and General Manager)
Denis has served as General Manager since 2007, but has worked in a variety of artistic and managerial positions at CPT since the fall of 2001. As General Manager, Denis acts as the CFO for the theatre and is responsible for day-to-day operations, the facility and Front of House. Currently, he’s deeply involved in the planning and management of CPT’s renovation. Denis was Director of the Y-Haven Theatre Project, one of CPT’s adult outreach programs from 2006 to 2009. The Y-Haven Theatre Project collaborates with residents of Y-Haven’s Transitional Housing Program to create an original play based on their personal experiences. Other notable artistic roles also include Associate Producer for CPT’s original production, Blue Sky Transmission: A Tibetan Book of the Dead. Denis brings 15 years of theatre management and project management consulting to his role at CPT. A graduate of the Northwestern University School of Speech Theatre Program, Denis was Production Manager and then Associate Producer for San Francisco’s acclaimed Pickle Family Circus. He later worked as Production Coordinator on feature films by Cleveland screenwriter Joe Eszterhaus including Telling Lies in America and Burn, Hollywood, Burn. Denis is proud to serve on the board of Network of Ensemble Theatres which is dedicated to propelling ensemble theatre practice to the forefront of American culture and society. Denis has also served as Vice President of the Board of Directors of Greater Cleveland Community Shares of which CPT is a member.
Faye Hargate (Director of Community Ensembles)
Faye is a performer, installation artist, educator and director. She recently received the Greater Cleveland Community Shares 2017 Rising Activist Award in recognition of her work as Program Director with Brick City Theatre. Faye joined the CPT staff in 2009 after working at the theatre as an independent artist since 2007. Appointed to Director of Community Ensembles in 2016, Faye is the Program Director of CPT’s Brick City Theatre, working with youth and families who live in public housing and leading the threefold expansion of the program, thanks to a pilot grant from the Cleveland Foundation’s new mastery-based arts initiative. In fall 2016, Faye was Project Manager for the Creative Fusion mural project at CMHA Lakeview Terrace with guest international muralist, Ananda Nahú. This project resulted in an over 500 foot community-based public art mural on the Washington Avenue wall across from the Lakeview Terrace tower. Faye is Program Manager of Teatro Publico de Cleveland, working with Raymond Bobgan and local Latinx artists to create and produce plays that share the multiplicity of cultures, identities and traditions in Cleveland’s Latino community. As TPC program manager, she serves as community liaison, ensemble coordinator, associate director and Production Assistant. She has supported the production of four bilingual devised plays and three Spanish language scripted plays, all produced at Cleveland Public Theatre.
Faye is a lead CPT artist and a founding member of the Cleveland Core Ensemble. Under the direction of Raymond Bobgan, she has collaborated to create original works: Red Ash Mosaic, Feefer Rising, Fire on the Water (Part Four of the Elements Cycle), Air Waves (Part Three of the Elements Cycle), Rusted Heart Broadcast, Earth Plays (Part Two of the Elements Cycle) and Open Mind Firmament. Collaborating with visual artist, and mother, Joan Hargate, Faye has directed the creation of performance/art installations: She’s Wearing White…, Royal Ann’s Preserve, Echoless Shore and Fellsalie. She is a 2014 Creative Workforce Fellow, a program of the Community Partnership for Arts and Culture funded by Cuyahoga Arts and Culture. Other notable CPT credits include: American Falls, Akarui, Anna Bella Eema and The Other Shore. Prior to CPT, she was Associate Artistic Director of Cleveland’s Theater Ninjas from 2006-2009 and taught for Cleveland School of the Arts. Faye is a graduate of Ecole Jacques Lecoq (Paris, France) and has performed in France and Portugal. She holds a BA in Religious Studies and Theatre from Bowdoin College (Brunswick, Maine) and trained with Cleveland’s Inlet Dance Theatre. Faye is a Cleveland native.
melissa huber (development assistant)
Melissa is delighted to return to her native Northeast Ohio. Prior to joining the CPT team in December 2016, she worked for American Conservatory Theater, Cleveland Play House and London’s Almeida Theatre. Melissa earned a BA in Theatre from Denison University and a Master’s degree in Arts Policy and Management from Birkbeck, University of London.
Mara Layne (Box Office Associate)
Mara Layne is a playwright, actor, director, and lifelong Clevelander. Mara attended Kent State University for a degree in Theatre Studies as well as The National Theater Institute at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. In the future she would like to bring nationwide attention to the beauty of Cleveland’s art scene and the vibrant people who live here.
Caitlin Lewins (Director of Audience Engagement & Media Relations)
Caitlin Lewins, a Cleveland native, is a performer, writer, director, avid crafter and musician. Recently, Caitlin was awarded a 2016/2017 Nord Family Foundation Catapult Fellowship. During the fellowship year, Caitlin will develop (with Melissa Crum) a new musical, Everything is okay (and other helpful lies). Last season at CPT, Caitlin co-directed (with Dan Kilbane) and music directed 44 Plays For 44 Presidents. Caitlin joined the CPT staff in the fall of 2013 as Story Connector, became New Play Associate in the summer of 2014 and transitioned into her current role in 2017. Caitlin completed the 2013/2014 Joan Yellen Horvitz Director Fellowship which culminated in the production Left in Ink which she conceived, directed and co-created. Recently at CPT, Caitlin created The Cleveland Line Dance as a part of Light the Lights, Ol’ Moses CLE! (A Wild Holiday Romp). Caitlin line produced Entry Point (A New Play Development Program), four Road to Hope events in the Spring of 2016, line produced The Santaland Diaries at Playhouse Square and the Nord Family Foundation Playwright Reading Series, directed Canon Fodder – a Nord Fellowship Reading, music directed Frankenstein’s Wake and assistant directed/contributed to The Loush Sisters Love Dick’ns: Great Expectations. Caitlin co-created and directed Edison and Ford which appeared in Air Waves (Part Three of the Elements Cycle) and completed her third year in the Directing/Theatre Creation class. In the 12/13 season, Caitlin was Stage Manager/Assistant Director to Raymond Bobgan for Rusted Heart Broadcast and made her writing/directing debut at CPT with The Environmented in Earth Plays (Part Two of the Elements Cycle). Recent/favorite performances include Light the Lights, Ol’ Moses CLE! (A Wild Holiday Romp), Red Ash Mosaic (workshop), She’s Wearing White…, Air Waves (Part Three of the Elements Cycle), Earth Plays (Part Two of the Elements Cycle), Bird Behind the Curtain (Big Box 2013), 13 Most American Dreams, Grizzly Mama and The New Century. Caitlin is a graduate of Baldwin-Wallace College, where she studied Theatre, Philosophy and Music.
Colleen McCaughey (Grants Manager)
Colleen is a stage manager, performer and singer, and returned to her native Ohio to join the CPT team in 2015. She holds a bachelor’s degree in both Theatre and Political Science from Allegheny College. From 2013-2015, she worked in New York City as a stage manager for various theatre companies including The Play Company, The Flea Theater and Lincoln Center, while serving as the Administrative Associate for Dixon Place Theater. Originally from Hudson, Ohio, Colleen has appeared onstage in several Northeast Ohio theatre productions, most recently at CPT in the world premiere of Red Ash Mosaic (stage manager and performer), 44 Plays For 44 Presidents (featured as Hillary Clinton in select performances), Entry Point and Station Hope, and at Blank Canvas Theatre in Bat Boy: The Musical (Ruthie/Ned) and Reefer Madness (Sally). She frequently serves as a stage manager for CPT productions and special events including mainstage shows, Station Hope and Pandemonium.
Caitie H. Milcinovic (Director of Organizational Advancement)
Caitie joined Cleveland Public Theatre’s team in May 2014. In her role as Director of Organizational Advancement, she is responsible for all fundraising for the theatre, accounting for over three-quarters of the organization’s total revenue. This is her fourth year managing the fundraising effort for Pandemonium, which alone raises nearly 15% of the organization’s annual revenue. Caitie conceived and produced CPT’s Decade of Discovery event for donors and other stakeholders on April 1, 2016 to celebrate Raymond Bobgan’s 10th Anniversary as Executive Artistic Director. Caitie also oversees the patron experience department, managed by CPT’s Director of Patron Services. She is a member of the Class of 2016 for Cleveland Bridge Builders, a program of the Cleveland Leadership Center.
Prior to her arrival at CPT, she served as the Associate Managing Director of the Yale School of Drama / Special Events at Yale Repertory Theatre, including the Yale Institute for Music Theatre and the No Boundaries series of global performances. During her time at Yale, she also served as the Company Manager for Yale Rep, the Yale Fellow at Seattle Repertory Theatre, and the General Manager for the Yale Summer Cabaret Shakespeare Festival. Before going to Yale, she worked for three years as the Grants Writer for Center Theatre Group in Los Angeles. While in LA, she also worked part-time for Ensemble Theatre Company (ETC), a non-profit organization dedicated to serving the community through musical theatre and dance. She began as a Development Associate for ETC, then worked as an Associate Producer on a world premiere musical, joined the Board of Directors, became the Managing Director and served as the Producer for Starmites. She holds a BA in Theatre from the University of Southern California, an MFA in Theatre Management from the Yale School of Drama, and an MBA from the Yale School of Management.
sarah moore (Education Associate)
Sarah Moore is a Cleveland-based performer and teaching artist who calls Cleveland Public Theatre her artistic home. She started teaching with CPT in the fall of 2013 for the Brick City Theatre program and for the Student Theatre Enrichment Program (STEP) the following summer. Before becoming an Education Associate and full-time staff member for CPT, she also taught for Talespinner Children’s Theatre and their Outreach program. Sarah’s first performance experience with CPT was in the spring of 2013 when she was involved in the first creation workshop for the CPT World Premiere of Ancestra. Conceived by Holly Holsinger and Chris Seibert, Ancestra was inspired by the 1853 National Women’s Rights Convention in Cleveland and the history, stories and struggles of women from the past, present and future. Other CPT stage credits include Light the Lights, Ol’ Moses CLE! (A Wild Holiday Romp); Fire on the Water (Part Four of the Elements Cycle); Sisters (Big Box 14) and the Cleveland Core Ensemble World Premiere of Red Ash Mosaic. Sarah has also performed with Theater Ninjas in Black Cat Lost and The Grand Celebration of the Celestial Mystery and with Talespinner Children’s Theatre in The Mummies and the Magic Prince and Clara and the Nutcracker. Sarah is a graduate of Cleveland State University with a BA in Theatre and was born and raised in Cleveland. Other Cleveland State stage credits include Metamorphoses, Everyman, The American Dream and Bus Stop.
Ryan T. Patterson (Technical Director)
Ryan holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a Master of Fine Arts from Kent State University concentrated in Technical Direction. He began his career at FTSI, a performance art automation company in Las Vegas. He then ventured outside the world of performance art, working for Zimmer Orthopedics Company where he assisted with 6 total hip replacements and worked as a post market engineer. Ryan worked with Heinz North America where he served as a continuous improvement engineer. Although these ventures were valuable, he always knew his passion lied in creation of experiences. Upon completion of graduate school he became the Technical Director of Porthouse Theatre and has now joined CPT in the same role.
Devin Powell (Master Electrician and Carpenter)
Devin Powell is a graduate of Kent State University with a BFA in Lighting Design. Before joining the CPT staff, Devin spent a year as a Lighting Design Intern for Walt Disney Imagineering in Orlando, Florida.
Samantha V. Richards (Education Associate)
Samantha V. Richards is an Afro-Latina Caribbean artist from Brooklyn, NY who specializes in education, activism, acting, writing and singing. Prior to joining the education staff at Cleveland Public Theatre she was an Education Apprentice at the Cleveland Play House. Samantha graduated with a BA in Theatre Arts from Clark Atlanta University in 2016. She has been a Teaching Artist with Brick City Theatre since April of 2017. As a Teaching Artist she focuses on social emotional development and storytelling through the creation and performance of theatre using creative writing and rhythm. Some of Samantha’s stage credits include her work in Incendiaries (Ohio City Theatre Project); her lead in Saturated Fat, a moving ‘zine that uses sound, movement and story to remix and rethink what it means to own, claim and find power in a fat body; playing Pimple in Oliver Goldsmith’s She Stoops to Conquer (CWRU/CPH); her Off-Broadway debut in the musical showcase First You Dream (York Theatre Company) and a supporting role in Amiri Baraka’s The Dutchman, under the direction of Woodie King Jr. (Atlanta Black Theatre Festival).
Adam Seeholzer (Education manager)
Since 2006, Adam has worked repeatedly as an artist with CPT’s core outreach programs, the Y-Haven Theatre Project, the Student Theatre Enrichment Program (STEP) and Brick City Theatre. Starting in the summer of 2014, he brought that experience to his role as a full-time staff member, providing leadership and helping to grow these programs. Adam received a BA in Theatre Arts at Cleveland State University, where he studied with Holly Holsinger, a longtime CPT artist. He trained at Second City (CHI), SITI Co. (NYC) and graduated from Cleveland Improv Institute’s performance school. His acting credits include: Woyzeck: A Proper Murder and The Excavation with Theatre Ninjas. CPT acting credits include: The Other Shore; Open Mind Firmament; At-TEN-tion Span; Poor little Lulu; Earth Plays (Part Two of the Elements Cycle); numerous original performances at CPT’s annual Pandemonium event; Rusted Heart Broadcast; Air Waves (Part Three of the Elements Cycle); F*** Me, Love Me, Aphrodite and American Falls. Adam is a founding member of the Cleveland Core Ensemble and performed in Red Ash Mosaic last spring. Adam is a proud Cleveland native.
jaclyn vogel (Director of Patron Services)
Jaclyn Vogel is a director, costumer and writer from Indianapolis, IN. Since moving to Cleveland in 2014, Cleveland Public Theatre has been her creative home away from home. She holds a bachelor’s degree with high honors in Theatre from Butler University. Jaclyn first became involved with CPT through Raymond’s Creation Class Workshop. Since then she’s been part of the front of house team as a House Manager, Bartender, Box Office Associate and now is taking on her new role as Director of Patron Services for the 17/18 Season. Artistically, Jaclyn has been able to grow as a director and creator at CPT. She was the assistant director of Fire on the Water (Part Four of the Elements Cycle) in CPT’s 14/15 season, a Joan Yellen Horvitz Assistant Directing Fellow in CPT’s 15/16 Season and an Entry Point artist with her piece To be healthy last season. Through her fellowship she was able to assistant direct Lines in the Dust, direct Trash Dragons for TCG’s Pandemonium, work with visiting artists Gunesh and Ovlyakuli Khodjakuli on their piece Night in Tavern- West and East and create the piece I, Me for Pandemonium 2015: Transform. Jaclyn has also had the benefit of collaborating with local spoken word artists to create pieces for community events including the piece Bleeding Gold at Station Hope 2017.
Hillary Wheelock (Education & A/P Associate)
Hillary is a Cleveland-based Latina actress, fight choreographer, and educator. Prior to joining CPT, she was an actor-teacher for Great Lakes Theater. Hillary holds a BA in Theatre from Case Western Reserve University and certificates from the British-American Drama Academy and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. She has an extensive background in short-form improv comedy, training with CWRU’s IMPROVment under members of iO Chicago, Upright Citizens Brigade, and Something DaDa. Hillary has performed with convergence-continuum, Theater Ninjas, and Cleveland Shakespeare Festival, among others in Cleveland; and has appeared in various recent CPT productions including The Family Claxon and En El Tiempo de Las Mariposas.
Beth Wood (Associate Artistic Director & Director of Production)
Beth Wood joined the CPT staff in 2007. A director, actress, administrator, designer, educator and theatre technician, she holds a BA in Communications and Theatre from John Carroll University. As a director of adventurous scripted work, she has been honored as a director of superior achievement by the Cleveland Critics Circle in 2016, 2015 and 2013, and has directed 14 productions, including five world premieres and seven regional premieres, during her ten year tenure at CPT. In 2017, Beth was selected as a finalist for the National Directing Fellowship. In addition to her directing work, Beth supports four New Play Development series that invest in outside-the-mainstream work and the artistic growth of Northeast Ohio creators. In 2016, she was awarded a TCG Leadership U[niversity] Continuing Ed grant to research long-term new play development models across the country. Beth also produces large-scale community events for CPT, including Station Hope – an annual community event featuring over 200 artists performing original work inspired by issues of freedom and justice at Cleveland’s first authenticated Underground Railroad site. Her CPT directing credits include Lines in the Dust by Nikkole Salter, the NNPN Rolling World Premiere of in a word by Lauren Yee, There Is a Happiness That Is by Mickle Maher, Barbecue and Antebellum by Robert O’Hara, FEVER/DREAM by Sheila Callaghan, Why Torture is Wrong and the People Who Love Them by Christopher Durang and BOOM by Peter Sinn Nachtrieb. In addition to her work with scripted productions, Beth co-creates and directs original plays based on a comedic singing duo, The Loush Sisters, for Playhouse Square in 2011 and CPT in 2013 and 2015. In December 2017, she and her collaborators will premiere The Loush Sisters get HARD for the Holidays. Beth’s CPT acting credits include Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Mrs. Bob Cratchet’s Wild Christmas Binge, A Bright Room Called Day, Fefu and Her Friends, The Rocky Horror Show, Our Town, Pulp, Matt & Ben, Anna Bella Eema (co-production with Theater Ninjas), Open Mind Firmament, Don’t Call Me Fat, Akarui, Standing on Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays, Earth Plays (Part Two of the Elements Cycle), The Loush Sisters DO the Nutcracker, The Loush Sisters Love Dick’ns: Great Expectations and Mr. Burns – A Post-Electric Play. A former Actor-Teacher for Great Lakes Theater, Beth has taught a variety of theatre and acting courses throughout Northeast Ohio, and has served as the Technical Director for John Carroll University, Lakeland Theatre and Stagecrafters.
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Board of Directors
Philip M. Oliss, President
Kristofer Spreen, Vice President
Joanne Montagner-Hull, Treasurer
Cindy Marx, Secretary
Erin Dorsey Robinson
Marcia W. Levine, Emeritus