Teachers

Estes Tarver

Acting Instructor/Artistic Director

Estes Tarver is an award wining actor, director, writer, and producer working out of Raleigh, NC. He has acted in NYC, LA, NC, and regionally. Estes has recently been working on such shows as “House of Cards”, “The Outsiders”, and a new major film in ATL.  You might also have seen him as a recurring guest star in season two of Under The Dome on CBS as Tom Tilden.  [ See More ]

    Jeris Donovan

    Improv

    Jeris Donovan is an actress and comedian who has worked at all levels of the business. She has performed and directed improv for over twenty years and performed stand-up comedy all over the country. She studied improv at the renowned “Second City” in Chicago, Improv Olympic-Chicago, and Annoyance Theater, and has taught all levels of improvisation at the Improv Olympic West conservatory in Los Angeles, where she created and directed several shows and coached many teams. [ See More ]

      Carrie Marshall

      Music

      Carrie Marshall’s voice and original songs can be heard on iTunes and  Pandora Radio. She was named the Singer/Songwriter of the Year in 2010 for the NC Songwriter Co-Op competition. She was also a semi-finalist in the 2008 BBC Songwriter Competition. [ See More ]

      Paul Paliyenko

      Acting

      Paul Paliyenko is a professional actor with considerable experience performing on stage, screen, television, radio, and audiotape as an actor and improviser in Boston and NC. He is also an award-winning producer, director, cinematographer and sound designer with hundreds of film, video and audio producing and directing credits in Boston as well as nationally and internationally. [ See More ]

      Sean McCracken

      Acting

      Sean McCracken is an actor, singer, and improvisor who has nearly 20 years experience on stage, as well as in film, television, commercials, web series, and industrials. He has most recently been seen on AMC’s TURN, and on stage at the Temple Theatre’s Anything Goes and Playmaker’s Repertory Company’s The Hour of Feeling. He has a BA in Dramatic Art from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and has trained with Emmy Winning Director Joan Darling and The Second City in Los Angeles, and locally with Estes Tarver and Jeris Donovan. [ See More ]

        Oliver Riera

        Acting/Improv

        Oliver Riera is professional actor and improviser who has worked in film, commercially, and on stage. He is well versed in both improv and acting.  Oliver has always been in a passionate pursuit of his craft both as an actor and improvisor studying heavily with both Jeris Donovan (Improv) and Estes Tarver (Acting).  Previous to that he trained at DSI Comedy Theater in Chapel Hill, NC.  [ See More ]

          Katy Castaldi

          Katy Castaldi is an MFA Acting Graduate of Playmakers Rep, at UNC Chapel Hill. She also has a BA from the New School in NYC where she studied film. Katy has over 15 years of experience in acting… [see more]

            Melanie Prince

            Acting

            Melanie Prince started teaching acting after studying musical theatre at California State University, Sacramento. She ran a Northern CA private high school theatre program for three years and has also owned and operated a children’s performing arts school outside of Nashville TN. Click below to see more on Melanie’s Link “The Prince Chronicles”. [ See More ]

            Mark Cornell

            Playwriting


            Mark Cornell is a playwright, director, screenwriter, and filmmaker. Over 60 of his plays have been produced in theatres around the world, including, most recently, the critically-acclaimed Sprucehaven B with Rising Sun Performance Company in NYC as part of the Frigid Festival, and the upcoming Two Turtle Doves, which just appeared at Common Ground in Durham.  Mark is a Eugene O’Neill Conference Semi-Finalist (2014).  [ See More ]

                Vinny Valdivia

                Improv

                Vinny Valdivia has been an improv comedian since 2008. Originally from Long Island, Vinny started taking classes at the ComedyWorx Theater shortly after seeing his first improv show. After a couple of years of being a stage performer his journey continued in 2010 to Chapel Hill where he became a full time company member and in 2012, Associate Producer at the DSI Comedy Theater. Vinny has been on multiple long form improvisational teams and toured the country performing in NYC, Atlanta, Charleston, Virginia and Washington D.C. [ See More ]

                  Matt White

                  Stand Up Comedian

                  Matt White is just a small town guy with a huge personality! Which comes out every time he steps onstage with his brand of observational humor, mixed with improv/theatre training leaves audiences engaged and ready for more. He is an award winning comedian, winner of 2012 Port City Top Comic (Wilmington NC) and 2013 Carolina’s Funniest Comic (Carrboro NC). [ See More ]

                    Lori Mahl

                    Clowning

                    Actor, Director, and teacher, Lori Mahl was based in NYC for over 20 years where she performed principle roles on Broadway and national tours, (Agnes in Gypsy starring Tyne Daly, Minnie Fay in Hello,Dolly! starring Carol Channing, Tiger Lily in Peter Pan starring Cathy Rigby), regional theatre (Goodspeed Opera House, Ordway Music Theatre, AMTF, American Repertory Theatre), off and off-off b’way, over 100 TV commercials and voiceovers, several cartoons and 2 films. [ See More ]

                        Joan Darling

                        Joan Darling has been nominated four times for an Emmy (the first woman to be nominated) and twice for a Director’s Guild of America Award, winning one Emmy and one DGA award. Also winning an Emmy for her performance as Dorothy Parker in Woven in a Crazy Plaid… [read more]

                            Ray Dooley

                            Special Guest Instructor

                            Ray Dooley’s career as a professional actor has spanned forty years on stage, television, and film. Since 1989 he has been an actor with PlayMakers Repertory Company, and since 1992 he has been a member of the faculty of the Department of Dramatic Art at UNC Chapel Hill. He currently serves as Head of the MFA Acting program. Ray received an OBIE award for Distinguished Performance in Peer Gynt at CSC Repertory Company in New York, and played Father Flynn in the European premiere of Doubt at Vienna’s English Theatre. His students have appeared on and off Broadway, in major regional theaters across the country, at the National Theater of Great Britain, and on numerous popular television programs. [read more]

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