Alumni

This list only represents a small portion of our alumni (particularly those who have sent us their information).  If you are an alum and would like to be included or need to give us an update on your listing below, please email us at theatre.dance@ua.edu.

As of Spring 2013

Jake Boyd (BA 2010) performed in the national tours of Carrie and Oklahoma.  More recently, he has been seen on television in a recurring role on Are We There Yet? and as a co-star on Blue Bloods.  Jake can currently be seen starring in the off-Broadway musical The Last Smoker in America.

Bobby Becher (BA Theatre 2011) is currently in the Gyeonggi English Village in South Korea, working as an “edutainer,” writing and performing original musicals to help teach the citizens and youth of South Korea the English language.  www.gev-edutainers.com

Katherine Caston (BA 1993) is an AP English teacher at Dorman High School in Roebuck, SC, and is marrying chef Jonathan Martin in June.

Jonathan Cobb (BA 2007) moved to New York City after graduation, where he continues to work as a Journeyman at Hudson Scenic Studios in Yonkers, NY.  He works in the engineering, carpentry and welding departments.  Hudson has allowed him to build productions in both the shop and Broadway theatres.  Jonathan was inducted into I.A.T.S.E Local One in November 2012.  Jonathan lives in Astoria with his wife, Alessia Donati.

Lynn Cooley (MFA 2007) is currently the Manager of Ticket Operations for the Tennessee Performing Arts Center in Nashville.

Jeremy Cox (MFA 2009) is currently an Adjunct Professor of Theatre at UT Chattanooga.

Mary Fran Abell Crook (MFA 2002, BA 1996) is a mother of four and is an Assistant Professor of Theatre at Grambling State University, where she teaches all stage and theatre management courses, along with several other in the Department of Visual and Performing Arts.  Mary Fran continues to work professionally as a choreographer, stage manager, and director, and is the co-founder and Producer of the B & B Theatre — a new professional theatre company in Ruston, LA.  Mary Fran and her husband, Paul (MFA 1996) are the proud parents of George, CeCe, Bryant Ford, and Mary Ellis.

Paul B. Crook (MFA 1996) is currently the Associate Professor of Acting and Directing and Director of Recruiting at Louisiana Tech University.  At Tech, Paul teaches all acting and directing courses and directs for the Department of Theatre, while supervising all undergraduate and graduate directing projects.  Paul continues to both direct and act around the country, and is the co-founder and Artistic Director of the B & B Theatre.

Karina Croskrey Balfour (MFA 2009) is currently an Adjunct Instructor at Community College of Philadelphia.  She is a professional actor in Philadelphia, performing with such companies as Renegade Theatre Company, Walking Fish Theatre and EgoPo Theatre.

Lauren Hauser Wiley (BA 2005) is currently playing Cosette on the 25th Anniversary U.S. Tour of Les Miserables.  She has also performed for Disney in Orlando and Tokyo, Japan, and regional theatres in Florida, Georgia, New York, North Carolina and Massachusetts.  In NYC, Lauren played the title role in Madame Bovary, the Musical at Theatre 5, and a principal role in the operetta Villa Diodati for the New York Musical Theatre Festival.  She is based in New York City.

Janelle Issis (BA 2011), a sum cum laude graduate of UA’s Department of Theatre and Dance, was selected as a top twenty dancer on the Fox television show So You Think You Can Dance this past summer.  For more details and video clips, visit http://www.fox.com/dance/.

Kristi Jacobs (MFA 2009) is currently the Fine Arts Department Chair and Theater Director for Mount Carmel Academy in New Orleans, Louisiana.  Kristi also recently married Marcus Stanley in late 2011.

Ava Kelley (BA 2008) has just completed a contract with Disney Cruise Lines, where she performed as a dancer and aerialist in The Golden Mickeys aboard the Disney Dream.  She lives in Brooklyn, New York and is a member of The Hive Theatre Company.

Jen Nelson Lane (MFA 2001) is the Production Stage Manager for the Alabama Shakespeare Festival.  She and her husband, fellow alum Marcus Lane, live in Montevallo, AL, with their son, Dean.

Sadie Magadanz (MFA 2009) is currently Assistant Professor of Acting at Northwest Mississippi City College.

Martin-Green, Sonequa (BA 2007) can currently be seen on AMC’s The Walking Dead and, has just recently, been cast in the ABC hit Once Upon a Time.  Most recently, she also played a recurring role on Army Wives and appeared as a guest artist on Law and Order: Criminal Intent.  She has appeared in the John Sayles’ film Honeydrippers, the feature film Toe to Toe (Sundance Film Festival honorable mention) and a regional commercial for the American Red Cross.

Wade Mowles (MFA 2009) is currently appearing in the national tour of Virtual Me.

Katy Olsen (MFA 2006) is now the Marketing and Communications Director for The Alabama Ballet in Birmingham.

Travis Ray (MFA 2011) is working as the House Manager for Chicago’s Goodman Theatre.  He most recently served as the Box Office Manager for the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts in Chicago, IL.  Travis earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theatre from Alabama State University.  He continued his studies at The University of Alabama, where he earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in Theatre Management.  Professionally, Travis has worked with such companies as The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, The Atlanta Coalition of Performing Arts, The Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, The King Tut Exhibit, The National Black Arts Festival, The University of Nebraska-Lincoln/Nebraska Repertory Theatre, The Alliance Theatre and Tyler Perry Studios.  Travis is a member of the Association of Arts Administration Educators (AAAE), Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC), Theatre Communications Group (TCG) and the United States Institute of Theatre Technology (USITT).  Travis is also currently producing a documentary film titled, Seeing Positively, which explores the dynamics of how three African American youths express their modes of empowerment after coming from an environment where gang violence, sex trade, homelessness, and social stigmas exist in the South and West Side Chicago.  For more details, visit http://www.seeingpositively.org/.

Michael Thomas Walker (BA 2003) recently graduated from Rutgers University with an MFA in Acting.  Since then, Michael has been busy performing as Marcellus in The Music Man at The Arrow Rock Lyceum Theatre, shooting a national Brut cologne commercial, as well as a recent episode of HBO’s Boardwalk Empire.  Up next is a staged reading of Lift, a new play by Walter Mosley.  In October, Michael will be performing his solo theatre piece, Bubba, at the United Solo Theatre Festival in NYC.  http://www.michaelthomaswalker.com/

Blake Williams (BA 2010) was recently cast in a staged reading of Hannah Cowley’s The Belle’s Stratagem as the character Flutter with the famed Pearl Theatre Company Off-Broadway in NYC during the summer.  Blake also recently played the lead in Pipeline Theater Company’s last production, Giant Killer Slugs, and was well-reviewed for his turn as a failed track star in the show by Backstage Magazine in New York City.  In December, he will graduate from David Mamet and William H. Macy’s acting school at Atlantic Theater Company.  Currently, he is founding a new theater company with fellow UATD alum Sarah Hughes called Blue Ass Monkey Theater company.  Its inaugural production will be Philip Ridley’s Mercury Fur, playing in December at Atlantic Stage 2.

Willie Williams (MFA 2009) is currently an Assistant Professor of Speech at the University of West Alabama.  Willie has also appeared in the John Sayles film Honeydrippers.

Williams, Stephen Tyrone (BA Theatre, 2004) – is currently in rehearsals for and will be making his Broadway debut, with Tom Hanks, playing Abner Louima in Norah Ephron’s Lucky Guy, directed by George C. Wolfe.  Living in NYC, Stephen’s credits include:  Off-Broadway – Harper Regan (Atlantic Theater Company), My Children! My Africa! (Signature Theatre Company, Clive Barnes Finalist), Burning (New Group), and Hallway Trilogy (Rattlestick Playwrights); Regionally – Gem of the Ocean (Hartford Stage), Fences (Seattle Repertory/Syracuse Stage, SALT Nomination)’ Ruined (Intiman/Geffen Playhouse), Topdog/Underdog (Actors Theatre of Louisville), and Measure for Measure (Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey).  Select Film & TV – Children of God (Showtime, Best Actor Festival del Mar in Mallorca), Unforgettable (CBS), Restless City (Sundance 2011), and the upcoming Phil Spector Biopic (HBO).  http://www.stephentyrone.com/

As of Fall 2011

Adkins, Thomas (MFA Theatre Management, 2005) – in addition to serving as the former Theatre Management Program Director for UA, served as a producer on the off-off-Broadway production Dammit, Shakespeare! (written by fellow UA professor Seth Panitch) at Urban Stages in New York City.  His professional career has also included serving as Company Manager for the Clarence Brown Theatre, the LORT D professional theatre-in-residence at the University of Tennessee; Production Stage Manager for university and professional theatres in the southeast; Box Office Manager; and spent a year in New York studying with producers and publicists for the Broadway community.

Azar, Thomas (BA Theatre, 2006) – currently in the Bay area of San Francisco, Thomas has been working professionally at the California Shakespeare Theatre, among others.

Branneman, Angela (MFA Theatre Management, 2006) – is currently an Assistant Professor at Ithaca College in New York.  She teaches in the B.S. in theater arts management curriculum.

Crocket, Will (MFA Theatre Management, 2002) – is the Public Relations Director for the Baylor University College of Arts and Sciences.  Prior to his career at Baylor, he served as the Director of Performing Arts Marketing with the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Davis, Keith (BA Theatre, 1997) – received his MFA in 2000 from the Yale Drama School.  Broadway credits:  Julius Caesar with Denzel Washington, Festen w/Julianna Margulies and Jeremy Sisto.  Television:  Law & Order, Third Watch, Guiding Light, Law & Order: SVU.  Film:  Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead with Sidney Lumet and Ethan Hawke, De Dominee (Netherlands), G, Mitchelville, The Arrangement.  He is currently completing an MFA at New York University om film direction.  He also completed a short, Surface of Things, which has screened in competition at Palm Springs International Film Festival (CA), the Anthology Film Archives Series Newfilmmakers (NY) and the Harlem International Film Festival (NY).

Davis, Stephen Tyler (BA Theatre, 2006) – served as the Emcee of the Ripley’s Believe It or Not tour in NYC’s Times Square and was recently seen in the national tour of Christmas Carol for TheatreWorks USA.

Dean, Aubrey (BA Theatre, 2008) -is currently employed as an Alterations Specialist for David’s Bridal and is a freelance Costume Designer for the Birmingham Dance Theatre.

Deckard, Corinne Gabrielson (MFA Theatre Management, 2003) – is the Assistant Managing Director at the Asolo Repertory Theatre in Sarasota, Florida.

Donati-Cobb, Jonathan (BA Theatre, 2007) – moved to New York City after graduation, where he began work at The Julliard School as staff carpenter.  Jonathan continues to work as a Scenic Carpenter and Welder with IATSE Local One at Hudson Scenic, Gotham Scenic, and IATSE Local Four at Showman Fabricators, where his list of production credits include Billy Elliot, The Lion King: Las Vegas, Fela!, 9 to 5, The Addams Family, White Christmas, Memphis, Speed-the-Plow, God of Carnage, Chicago, Rock of Ages, Young Frankenstein National Tour, and 101 Dalmatians, among others.  Jonathan lives in Astoria with his wife, Alessia Donati.

Duffy, Dianna (BA Theatre, Musical Theatre Track, 2010) – is a recent graduate of The University of Alabama,  where she double majored in Musical Theatre and Public Relations.  A member of Actor’s Equity, she recently took the stage back home in New Orleans, LA, where she starred in the Le Petit Theatre du Vieux Carre’s productions of Hairspray and Forbidden Broadway! www.diannaduffy.com

Fooksman, Diana (MFA Theatre Management, 2006) – is the General Manager of the National Players at the Olney Theatre Center in the D.C. metropolitan area.

Foro, Greg (MFA Acting, 2008) – is currently the Artistic Director of NYC’s BAMA Theatre Company, a non-profit organization consisting of artists from around the country with one thing in common: they all studied at The University of Alabama.  It’s first production, A Midsummer Night’s Dream,  premiered at the 13th annual International Fringe Festival in 2009 and has been picked up by the State Theatre of New Jersey for this coming spring.  Their second production, As You Like It, was recently performed in NYC’s 14th annual Fringe Festival this past summer.  For more information on the company’s mission, educational outreach program, and reviews in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, visit www.bamatheatrecompany.org.

Gibson, Jeff (MFA Theatre Management, 2001) – is the Director of Theatre for the Department of Speech and Theatre at Middle Tennessee State University where he teaches arts administration and stage management.  He also serves as the Chair of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival Region IV.

Hardin, Chris (MFA Acting, 2006) – is currently Assistant Professor of Acting and Movement at Austin Peay University.

Henderson, Bryant (BA Dance, 2010) – served as the resident choreographer and instructor for Theatre Tuscaloosa’s production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.  He now lives in New York City, where he is an active participant in the NYC dance scene.  He currently dances and performs  with two modern dance companies – BEings Dance and SYREN Modern Dance.  In addition to performing, Bryant teaches dance classes throughout NYC, New Jersey, and Long Island.  He also freelances with CESD Talent Agency, teaches workshops, and choreographs for different venues.

Hughes, Amanda (MFA Theatre Management, 2004) – is the Marketing Director for the Georgia Shakespeare Festival in Atlanta, GA.

Hutson, Erin (BA Theatre, 2008) – was most recently seen as Rapunzel at the Birmingham Children’s Theatre.

Jeffers, Gaye (MFA Acting, 2006) – is currently Assistant Professor of Theatre at the University of Tennessee, Chattanooga.

Jones Smedley, Yvette (MFA Theatre Management/Arts Administration, 1997) – is the Performing Arts Program Manager for the Alabama State Council on the Arts and is a member of Actors‘ Equity Association, Alpha Psi Omega National Honorary Theatre Society and Delta Omicron International Honors Music Fraternity for Women.  Ms. Jones-Smedley has over 25 years of service to the Alabama arts community performing in various capacities including instructor, actor, director, producer and administrator.  Yvette worked as an Instructor of Theatre and Theatre Management and Production at Alabama State University.  She taught Acting at Auburn University at Montgomery and Visual & Performing Arts for the Archdiocese of Mobile Catholic Schools System, where she also worked as Technology Resource Coordinator.  Her professional stage credits as actor/director include Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Portland Center Stage, Cleveland Playhouse, and the Ensemble Theatre of Houston, Texas.  Some of her most noted roles include Gower in Pericles, Prince of Tyre and Berniece Charles in The Piano Lesson, both at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival.  Film and Television credits include Blue Skies, Perfect Harmony and In The Heat of the Night.  Yvette is an experienced Theatre Arts clinician including an engagement with the Alabama Governor’s School for the Arts and Technology (AGSAT) and she was an Artist-in-Residence with the state arts council.  Ms. Jones-Smedley  was employed as the first Artistic Director & Branch Manager of The Montgomery YMCA Cultural Arts & Education Center, Artistic Director and Project Coordinator for the Academy of the Fine Arts, Inc., and was Co-founder and Artistic/Managing Director of the Aldridge Repertory Theatre, Inc., of Birmingham, AL.

McNerney, Maegan (MFA Acting, 2006) – recently spent a season at the Seaside Repertory Theatre.  She is currently the Director of Education at the California Theatre Center.

Michalke, Allison (BA Dance, 2009) – is living in Atlanta, GA teaching dance at two studios in the metro-Atlanta area and choreographing for their competition teams.  Allison’s choreography won many awards at last year’s competitions, and she is excited to see how her pieces do this year.  Allison also regularly takes dance class at “Gotta Dance Atlanta”.

Miller, Adam (MFA Theatre Management, 2001) – became the Managing Director for Theatre Tuscaloosa at Shelton State Community College in October 2010.  Adam also teaches Theatre Appreciation at Shelton and is serving on the board of directors for American Advertising Federation – Tuscaloosa as Vice President for Programs.

Mosely, Stephanie (BA Theatre) –  was in the John Sayles’ film Honeydrippers and had a leading role in the national touring production of The Drowsy Chaperone.

Moy, Allison (BA Theatre, 2008) – is currently a member of the acting company at the Actor’s Theatre of Louisville.

Munoz, Anastasia (BA Theatre, 2006) – recently performed in The Rape of Lucrece in Dallas, TX and has appeared in numerous other productions, including work at the Dallas Children’s Theatre.

Reed, Alicia Johnson (MFA Theatre Management, 2005) – is the Director of Marketing and Communications for the Alabama Shakespeare Festival.  She has has worked as a Speech and Drama Instructor for the Birmingham City School System, the Los Angeles Unified School District, UAB Special Studies and Virginia Samford Theatre.  She has worked as the Artistic Director and Drama Day Camp Coordinator for the Academy of the Fine Arts Inc., the University of Alabama at Birmingham Special Studies Summer Children’s Theatre, the Alys Stephens Center Performing Arts Camp and her own community theatre company, Make It Happen Theatre.  She has been an Artist in Residence for the Los Angeles Watts Tower and cultural arts writer for both the Los Angeles Watts Times and the Birmingham Times.  She has also served as a committee member for the Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival, been a docent for the Los Angeles African American Museum of Art, a publicist of L.A. Unity Player, and a participant of the Lincoln Center Aesthetic Education in the Arts Program in New York.  In addition, she has had the privilege of working for Babyface Edmonds in his production company, Edmonds Management, and has been the casting assistant in the office of Robi Reed and Associates on such popular television series as Sister, Sister and Soul Food. Alicia has her MFA in Theatre Management and Arts Administration from The University of Alabama.  Before taking on this position, she served as the Audience Development Manager at ASF.  Currently she is an Arts Mentor at Alys Stephens Center and an Audience Development Consultant for both the Birmingham Summerfest Theatre and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

Rodriguez, Diany (BA Theatre, 2004) – recently finished playing Dora in the national tour of Dora the Explorer Live and is currently rehearsing as Mimi in the Japanese tour of Rent.

Simpson, Julia (BA Theatre, 2009) – is currently teaching both theatre and dance at Shades Valley High School’s Academy for Theatre and Dance.

St. John, Jason (MFA Scenic Design/Technical Direction, 2005) – served as Production Manager/Designer for Red Mountain Theatre Company after graduation.  Jason is currently teaching 12th grade English and Tech Theatre at Gadsden City High School.  He also serves as a board member for the Theatre of Gadsden and well as an adjunct instructor at Gadsden State Community College.  Jason is currently married and the father of two sons.

Thompson, Jeremy Allen (MFA Theatre Management, 2001) – is the Senior Director of Communications and Marketing for Brooklyn College.

Tracy, Daniel (MFA Acting, 2006) – is currently Assistant Professor of Theatre at North Georgia College and State University.

Valentine, Dr. Jacquie (MFA Theatre Management, 2004) – is the Assistant Director of Marketing and Communications for the Alabama Shakespeare Festival.

Ward, Sherry (MFA Theatre Management, 2003) – is the Coordinator for the Horton Foote American Playwrights Festival at Baylor University.

Williams III, Cliff (BA Theatre, 2004) – choreographed fights for four shows at the 2006 Humana Festival at the Actors Theatre of Louisville.  One, The Scene, is opening on Off-Broadway at Second Stage in February of 2007.  He is currently back at the Actors Theatre choreographing Dracula before moving to DC at the beginning of October 2006.