The Acting Apprentice Company






Our faculty consists of working theatre professionals, many of whom also teach at some of the nation’s most prestigious schools and training grounds.  Guest artists supplement the faculty, running master classes in specialized areas. 

THE 2017 FACULTY will be finalized soon, but it will include:

BRIAN B. CROWE (Play Reading/The Final Project) is in his 22nd season with The Shakespeare Theatre where he is currently the Director of Education. Directing credits: Coriolanus, Love's Labour's Lost (2004, 2015), The Learned Ladies, Pericles, Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist, Timon of Athens, The School for Wives, The Winter’s Tale, Henry VI: Blood & Roses, Julius Caesar, The Tempest (2002) and The Comedy of Errors (2001) on the Main Stage, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (2007) and The Taming of the Shrew (2006) on the Outdoor Stage and the 1999 world premiere of his original script, Wonderland (...And What Was Found There) on the Other Stage; as well as more than twenty productions for the Shakespeare LIVE! touring program. Mr. Crowe also directs in-school residencies, teaches in the Summer Professional Training Program, and works with the Junior and Senior Shakespeare Corps for the Theatre. The Star-Ledger called Mr. Crowe “one of the state’s most ingenious directors” for his work on Love’s Labour’s Lost and named him Best Director of a Drama (Julius Caesar and Wonderland) as well as one of three “theatre artists to look for in the new millennium.” Other directing credits include Red Herring and A Perfect Ganesh at 12 Miles West; Romeo and Juliet, The Tempest (DayTony recipient), Noises Off, the Midwest regional premiere of The Beauty Queen of Leenane and Patient A with The Human Race Theatre Company, where he is currently a resident artist; Somewhere in Between and Children of a Lesser God at Dayton Playhouse. Mr. Crowe received BFA degrees in directing and acting from Wright State University, and was a Fellow at the 2000 International Salzburg Shakespeare Seminar.

DOUG WEST (Stage Combat) is in his 15th season with The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, and his 8th as the Resident Stage Combat Instructor for the Summer Professional Training Program.  He is currently the Associate Director of Education.  Company fight credits include: Coriolanus, Blood and Roses; Shakespeare's Henry VI, and Romeo and Juliet, Misalliance on the Main Stage; multiple productions of Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, Julius Caesar and Henry V with Shakespeare LIVE; The Taming of the Shrew, Tartuffe, As You Like It, A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Libation Bearers and The Rover with the Next Stage Ensemble; and the final Training Program Projects Titus Andonicus, Richard II, Henry VI Part 3, Coriolanus and Troilus and Cressida.  Non STNJ fight credits include productions of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, The Illusion, True West, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Othello, Murdering Marlowe, Kiss Me Kate, Crazy for You, and The Prince and the Pauper.  Company acting credits: Main Stage productions of Henry IV Part One, MacbethKing John, The Tempest (2002) and three tours with Shakespeare LIVE!. Doug has an MFA in Acting from The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

PAST FACULTY HAVE INCLUDED:

RON CARLOS (Voice/Speech) is a New York-based teacher of voice, speech and dialects. Ron currently on the faculty of The Yale School of Drama, The City College of New York, and Marymount Manhattan College. Broadway: It's Only A Play, The Glass Menagerie. Off-Broadway: The Witch of Edmonton (Redbull Theater). Regional: War (Yale Rep); Pippin, The Glass Menagerie, The Lily's Revenge, The Snow Queen (American Repertory Theater) TV: Madam Secretary, Power, Unforgettable, Fringe. Ron has his MFA in Voice and Speech Pedagogy from American Repertory Theater Institute at Harvard University, his BA in Theater Performance with a Musical Theatre minor from Marymount Manhattan College, and is an Associate Teacher of Fitzmaurice Voicework®.

STEPHEN BROWN-FRIED (Text Analysis) is in his twelfth season with The Shakespeare Theatre. Directing credits: Misalliance, All’s Well That Ends Well, and The Comedy of Errors, Shakespeare LIVE!: Midsummer Night’s Dream (twice), Macbeth, NSE: Coriolanus, and several seasons as a Training Program Instructor.  Additional credits include: Awake and Sing! with The National Asian American Theatre Company and The Public Theatre​; Welcome to America and workshops of Professor Brenner (with Elaine Stritch) and With the Current with New Worlds Theatre Project; Much Ado About Nothing, Macbeth, The Merchant of Venice and Julius Caesar with Trinity Shakespeare; other credits include Henry IV, Part I with Milwaukee Shakespeare, Love’s Labour’s Lost with Illinois Shakespeare, Paradise Lost at the Yale School of Drama,​ Major Barbara at SMU, Meantime: Home at NYU Tisch Grad Acting; Shakespeare’s R & J at VCU, Lysistrata at University of Miami; and All’s Well That Ends WellRichard III, and The Trojan Women at the New School for Drama. He is on the MFA ​directing faculty of the New School for Drama and the Yale School of Drama​ and holds a BA in Drama and History from Stanford University and an MFA in Directing from the ​Yale School of Drama.

CHERYL CLARK (Movement for the Actor/Laban) has been involved with dance, choreography, and movement education both nationally and abroad. Teaching at Drew University for 13 years, she was instrumental in creating the dance minor for the school.  She has taught at the following institutions: Marymount Manhattan College, American Academy of Dramatic Arts, School for Film and Television, and Shakespeare Theater of NJ. Extensively trained in Somatic modalities, she is a Certified Movement Analyst (CMA) in Laban Movement Studies and a Certified Body-Mind Centering Practitioner® and a certified yoga instructor RYT 200 hrs. She currently teaches at the Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies, where she has taught since 2003. Cheryl’s teaching focuses on the disciplines of: dance, theater, voice, movement for the elderly, and public speaking. In addition to working with various NY artists, her choreography has been presented at New York locations including Dixon Place and The Knitting Factory. She performed nationally and taught for the Avodah Dance Ensemble. Post-graduate studies in Eastern Theatre led to involment as a guest artist and choreogrpaher with Hyun-Ju Lee Dance Company at Brooklyn Academy of Music Fishman Space and the Korean Cultural Service She has choreographed for critically acclaimed STNJ productions of Pride and Prejudice and Romeo and Juliet; the New York Times described her choreography in Romeo and Juliet as "joyous." She was co-choreographer of the 2008 Movement Choir New York-Berlin Dialogues choreographing and performing in New York’s Washington Square Park and Berlin’s Tiergarten.  Her teaching emphasizes anatomical awareness, respect for the body-mind union, and the uniqueness that each individual requires. Her belief is that movement can inspire people and be used as a catalyst for individual and social change.

BRUCE CROMER (Acting/Shakespeare) is in his seventh season with The Shakespeare Theatre. Company credits: Subtle in The Alchemist, both Dukes in As You Like It, Apemantus in Timon of Athens, Arnolphe in The School For Wives, Baptista Minola/Grumio in The Taming of the Shrew, and Sagredo/Cardinal Bellarmin in Life of Galileo. Bruce is a Resident Actor with the Human Race Theatre, a professor and head of Acting for Wright State University's Professional Actor Training Program, and a certified Stage Combat teacher with the Society of American Fight Directors. Select Regional credits: Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Santa Fe Stages, Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Seattle Children’s Theatre, Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati, etc. Bruce will play Willy Loman in The Death of a Salesman with Cincinnati Shakespeare Company in September and then returns (for his eleventh year) as Scrooge in the Cincinnati Playhouse’s A Christmas Carol in December.

A. BENARD CUMMINGS (Acting/Shakespeare) is in his 23rd season with the Shakespeare Theatre of NJ.  Roles at the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey include: Timon of Athens, The Tempest (twice), A Midsummer Night's Dream, Pericles, and Henry 4 Part 1.  He has acted in Regional Theatres across the country, as well as episodic TV.  He currently is an Associate Professor of Acting at Southern Methodist University and is an adjunct professor at SUNY Purchase.  He has also taught at The Stella Adler Studio of Acting in NYC and is a faculty member for the Apprentice Company at Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey.
 
VIVIAN MAJKOWSKI (Voice/Speech) is in her ninth season with The Shakespeare Theatre, where she has spent the past five seasons teaching as part of the Summer Professional Training Program, and vocal coaching on the summer tours. She has also coached extensively at A.P.T, A.R.T. in Boston, and TheatreWorks in Colorado. Vivian regularly dialect coaches for film and television working with such actors as Alan Rickman, William Hurt, Stana Katic, Rupert Grint, and Ashley Greene among many others. She also has private clients in business, politics, religion, and academia for public speaking, presence, and rhetoric support. Vivian is certified by Catherine Fitzmaurice as an associate teacher of Fitzmaurice Voicework® but has also trained in Linklater, Rodenburg and Lessac pedagogies as well. Her background in speech training includes both Knight-Thompson and Skinner methodologies. She earned her MFA in Voice and Speech Pedagogy from the American Repertory Theater/Moscow Art Theatre School Institute for Advanced Theater Training at Harvard University. She currently is on faculty at Savannah College of Art and Design.

DONNIE MATHER (Viewpoints) is in his Fourteenth season with The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey having performed in Comedy of Errors, Merchant of Venice, and Antony and Cleopatra. Donnie is the founding artist of THE ADAPTATIONS PROJECT performing in KADDISH (OR THE KEY IN THE WINDOW) and as a former Associate of Anne Bogart’s SITI Company performing in Macbeth, Nicholas & Alexandra, Lilith, and Seven Deadly Sins. Donnie has worked several times with playwright Charles Mee performing in Trojan Women A Love Story (dir. Tina Landau) and Fetes De La Nuit (dir. Kim Weild) as well as  directing bobrauschenbergamerica at Hope College.  Donnie has 20 years experience with the Viewpoints Training and the Suzuki Method and has taught at the Atlantic Theatre Conservatory, NYCDA, Marymount, NYU, Columbia, Fordham, NTI at the O’Neill Theater Center, Bard, LSU, and Univ. of Houston as well as throughout Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Germany, Mexico, and Puerto Rico.  www.AdaptationsProject.org

ROCKFORD SANSOM (Voice) is an actor and voice educator based in New York City. Acting: Off Broadway: The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe (St. Luke’s) Pageant Princess (Bleeker St.). Broadway Tours: Wonderful Town (First National), 42nd Street (Asia), Le Fantôme de l’Opéra (Europe), and Bye Bye Birdie (National). Favorite Regional: Seaside Music Theater, Oklahoma Shakespeare, Orlando Repertory. Favorite Vocal Coaching: Boomerang Theatre, Southern Colorado Rep. Teaching Highlights: Shanghai Conservatory of China (Honorary Fellow of Theatre), Seoul National of South Korea, Central Florida, HB Studios, Marymount Manhattan College. Publications: Theatre Journal, Theatre Topics, Incite/Insight, Associate Editor for the Voice and Speech Review, World Cultures & Values (textbook chapters for Words of Wisdom Press). Business: Private coaching, North American Associate for Communications and Media Training (London) training Fortune 500 executives and United Nations delegates.  Education: Capella University (PhD), University of Central Florida (MFA), University of West Florida (BFA/BA). Teacher Certifications: Estill Voice (Certified Master Teacher), Knight-Thompson Speechwork, Fitzmaurice Voicework. AEA, SAG-AFTRA, VASTA, NATS. www.rockfordsansom.com. @rockfordsansom

SCOTT WHITEHURST (Shakespeare) Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey: Timon of Athens, King Lear, Henry V (1997 & 2007), As You Like It, The School for Wives, The Winter’s Tale (1996 & 2008), The School for Scandal, Henry VI: Blood & Roses, Taming of the Shrew. Off-Broadway: Into the Hazard: Henry 5 (Walkerspace); Waiting for Lefty with Marisa Tomei (Blue Light); Incommunicado with Tom Aldredge (Theatre Row); Jeffrey (Minetta Lane); Black Eagles (MTC); The Persians, Much Ado About Nothing, Romeo & Juliet, The Tempest, She Stoops to Conquer, Merchant of Venice, Double Infidelity, Nathan the Wise, When We Dead Awaken, Iphigeneia at Aulis (Pearl Theatre). Regional: Arena Stage, Ford’s Theatre, Cincinnati Playhouse (4 productions), Rep of St Louis, Pittsburgh Playhouse, Indiana Rep, Shakespeare Theatre DC (2 productions), Crossroads Theatre (4 productions), Geffen Playhouse, Arkansas Rep, Bristol Riverside, Pioneer Theatre, Contemporary American Theatre Festival (3 productions). Film & Television: “The Good Wife”, “Elementary” (2 eps), “Six Degrees”, “Law & Order: CI” (3 eps), “Law & Order” (2 eps), “Simple Justice”, “Because of You”, “The Kitchen”, “Malcolm X”. Coaching: Founded The WhiteRobinGroup Inc with wife Angela Robinson (Tyler Perry’s “The Haves and Have Nots”) in 2008. WRG offers acting intensives and private sessions in NYC, Atlanta GA, and Jacksonville FL. Teaching: Currently, Adjunct Lecturer at The New School for Drama in NYC. Previously, Ramapo College and Essex County College. Education: MFA Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers; BA Columbia.

MASTER CLASSES are led by members of The Shakespeare Theatre’s professional staff and artists, as well as guest instructors.   Past Master Class instructors have included:

BONNIE J. MONTE is now in her 27th season as the company’s Artistic Director.  Under her leadership, the Theatre has evolved into one of the largest and most respected classical theatres in the nation.  Ms. Monte has garnered national recognition for her highly successful revitalization of the institution, and for her outstanding commitment to arts education and professional training.  The Theatre has become one of the nation’s leading training grounds for emerging classic theatre artists. In its January 2003 issue, New Jersey Monthly named Ms. Monte one of “40 New Jerseyans We Love.” She has received numerous awards and honors including a Women of Achievement Award, sponsored by the New Jersey General Assembly; an Alumni Achievement Award from Bethany College in West Virginia; and a Person of the Year Award from the National Society of Arts and Letters, for her longtime efforts to nurture young artists. She has also been named Professional Artist of the Year by the Arts Council of the Morris Area, and one of the 25 Most Influential People in the Arts in New Jersey by The Star-Ledger.

Prior to arriving in New Jersey, Ms. Monte was a casting director at the prestigious Manhattan Theatre Club in New York City. From 1981 to 1989, she was Associate Artistic Director at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts, working closely with renowned Artistic Director Nikos Psacharopoulos. While there, Ms. Monte initiated many new programs, including a second stage and an outdoor free theatre. In 1982, she was part of a writing team, which included Psacharopoulos and Tennessee Williams, collaborating on Tennessee Williams: A Celebration, a major retrospective tribute to Mr. Williams’ entire literary canon. During her tenure at Williamstown, Ms. Monte also cast and helped produce joint ventures with other major theatres, including Sweet Bird of Youth at the Royal Alexandra Theatre in Toronto, A Streetcar Named Desire on Broadway at Circle-in-the-Square, The Glass Menagerie at The Long Wharf Theatre, and Arms and the Man at The Pasadena Playhouse. 

Since 1990, she has directed over 60 productions for The Shakespeare Theatre, including stagings of numerous Shakespeare plays, as well as work from the Russian classic canon with a focus on Chekhov and Ostrovsky.  Her special affinity for Tennessee Williams has resulted in highly acclaimed productions of A Streetcar Named Desire, Camino Real and Sweet Bird of Youth. She has created a number of original translations/adaptations for the company’s Main and Outdoor stages, including Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, Marivaux’s The Triumph of Love, Pirandello’s Enrico IV,Ostrovsky’s Artists and Admirers, Maeterlinck’s The Blue Bird, Verne’s Around the World in Eighty Days, Goldoni’s The Servant of Two Masters, which was published by Playscripts, Inc, The Alchemist, and The Guardsman. From 2013 to 2016, Ms. Monte collaborated with Jacques Lacombe and the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra on their Winter Shakespeare Series presenting three events melding Shakespeare's text with symphonic music.

Ms. Monte has been actively involved in the training of new talent for the American stage through numerous training programs for over 30 years, and has also engaged in residencies at the University of South Carolina, where she directed The Trojan Women, and the University of Notre Dame, where she directed The Bacchae.  She has been on the faculty of Drew University and The New School in Manhattan. Ms. Monte obtained a post-graduate conservatory degree in directing from The Hartman Conservatory and a B.A. in theatre from Bethany College in Bethany, West Virginia. She has Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degrees from Drew University and the College of Saint Elizabeth.  She is originally from Stamford, Connecticut.

DEVON ALLEN (Epic Theatre Voice & Movement) is artistic director of Our Shoes Are Red/The Performance Lab, whose productions in Portland include: Sam Shepard’s True West, Caryl Churchill’s Far Away (with PSU), Tim Crouch’s An Oak Tree, Will Eno’s Oh the Humanity, Conor McPherson’s This Lime Tree Bower (with CoHo, winner of two Drammys), Howard Barker's Ursula, and Eno’s Thom Pain (based on nothing). The Lab has also worked extensively on the east coast, before basing itself in Portland.  Allen has acted and directed in such venues as La Jolla Playhouse, Manbites Dog Theatre, Corpus Theatre Group (Edinburgh Fringe), Theatre Project in St. Louis, Lincoln Center Director's Lab, and The Brecht Company, among others. She has devised new music/theatre with ensembles of actors and composers, including The Kafka Operaand Ophelia's Tattoo, both of which enjoyed successful showings in New York City. She is currently Head of Acting and resident artist at Portland State University. Previous to her move to the Northwest, she taught at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, Duke University, U.C.S.D., and Muhlenberg College. She is a member of the Actors Equity Association and the Lincoln Center Director’s Lab, and in 2009 was an invited participant in the prestigious Theatre for a New Audience’s American Director’s Project.  She holds a certificate from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts and an MFA in Acting from the University of California at San Diego. In 2016 she assisted Cecily Berry, C.B.E., Voice and Acting Director of The Royal Shakespeare Company, working with London’s greatest ensemble of actors.

JEFFREY M. BENDER (Comedy) is in his sixteenth season with The Shakespeare Theatre. Company credits: Much Ado About Nothing, The Alchemist, The Tempest, Fallen Angels, Oliver Twist, Henry IV, Part One, Accidental Death of an Anarchist, The Servant of Two Masters, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged) (the Outdoor Stage), The Rivals, Life of Galileo, The Tempest, Enrico IV, Three Sisters, and The Blue Bird, to name a few. Broadway credits: A Time to Kill (The Golden Theater) and Cymbeline (Lincoln Center). Regional credits: Denver Center Theatre, Arena Stage in D.C., Old Globe in San Diego, Seattle Repertory Theatre, and numerous regional and NYC theatre companies. Graduate of the University of Michigan.

STEPHEN MICHAEL DAVIS (Movement: Weight-Time-Space) is an Assistant Professor of Theatre Arts at Centenary College, a proud member of the Actor’s Equity Association, and has frequently served as a teaching artist for The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey for over the past eleven seasons. He worked for the Ben Nye Makeup Company in Los Angeles from 1999-2002 and has taught makeup workshops all over the country (USITT, SETC, RMTA, TETA) as well as a semester long course at Centenary. Stephen has a BFA in acting from The Theatre School at DePaul University, as well as an M.F.A. in directing from University of South Carolina, where he received the Two Thumbs Up Teaching Award for making a difference in the lives of students with learning disabilities.  While at Centenary, Professor Davis was honored with the 2010-2011 United Methodist Exemplary Teaching Award. He teaches classes and in-school residencies to all ages in Shakespeare, stage combat, theatrical makeup, acting, directing, playwriting, video production and movement for the theatre.

KEVIN ISOLA (Clowning) is in his seventh season with The Shakespeare Theatre. Company credits:  Equivocation, The Alchemist, The Liar, Accidental Death of an Anarchist, Around The World in Eighty Days, King Lear, and As You Like It.  Broadway credits:  Brooklyn Boy.  Off-Broadway credits:  By The Way, Meet Vera Stark (Second Stage), The Boys in The Band (Transport Group), New House Under Construction (59E59 Street Theatre), Aliens with Extraordinary Skills (The Women’s Project), Trust (The Play Company), The World Over, The Water Children (Playwrights Horizons), Twelfth Night, Venus, WASP and Other Plays (NYSF/The Public Theater), Everett Beekin (Lincoln Center), The New Bozena (The Cherry Lane).  Regional credits:  My Wonderful Day (Two River Theatre), Twelfth Night (McCarter Theatre), The Glass Menagerie (The Old Globe), Brooklyn Boy (South Coast Repertory Theatre), As Bees in Honey Drown (Provincetown Repertory Theatre), The Rainmaker (Baltimore Center Stage), The New Bozena (The Hudson Theatre, The Tiffany Theatre), Venus (Yale Repertory).  TV and Film credits:  Passing Harold Blumenthal, Frank the Rat, The New Bozena, How The Grinch Stole Christmas, Uninvited, 24 Nights, Academy Boyz, The New Yorker, Fringe, Damages, Boston Legal, Law and Order, The Summer of Ben Tyler (Hallmark Hall of Fame), All My Children, and Viva Variety.  Kevin received his MFA from the NYU Graduate Acting Program.

BRIAN McKNIGHT (First Folio Technique) earned his BFA from Wright State University and his MFA from The Theatre School at DePaul University.  He appeared as Tom in The Glass Menagerie in Kettering, England, in a production for which he also served as director. As a Resident Artist with the Human Race Theatre in Dayton, Ohio, he performed roles in Take Me Out, Rounding Third, The Tempest, The Underpants, Crimes of the Heart, and The Dazzle.  Other past roles include the title role in Richard III, Iago in Othello, Compte de Guiche in Cyrano de Bergerac, and Hortensio in Taming of the Shrew.  Past directing credits include The Glass Menagerie, Our Town, All My Sons, The Cripple of Inishmaan, An Experiment with an Air Pump, Footfalls:  An Evening of short plays by Samuel Beckett, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, and The Tragedie of MacBeth, Dr. Faustus, The Tempest and A Mid-Summer Night's Dream. He adapted from Shakespeare and directed Will Power as part of the Human Race Theatre’s In-school touring season, and in his capacity as producer, playwright and artistic director, Brian has staged his plays Erosion, Play, and most recently The Boy Who Cried for Dayton’s Glass Apple Theatre. A recognized actor/combatant by the Society of American Fight Directors, Brian’s poem/biography of John Lennon appears in the book Writing with Passion, and his debut CD Hanging on for Dear Life, as well as its follow up, Pushing Forward Strongly as The Baker Street Irregulars, are available now on iTunes.  Brian is currently teaching as an adjunct professor in The Theatre School at DePaul University, as well as teaching English as a Second Language for Kaplan International, and was the lead faculty in performance for eight years in Sinclair Community College’s Department of Theatre and Dance.  Brian is a member of Actor’s Equity Association.