New Members 2021
NTC is proud to introduce its newest members!
NEW MEMBER BIOS
Micha Espinosa, international teaching artist, activist, and voice specialist in culturally inclusive pedagogies. Professor (BFA, Stephens College; MFA Acting, U.C. San Diego) at Arizona State University (ASU), affiliate faculty with ASU’s School of Transborder Studies & the Sidney Poitier New American Film School; Lead Teacher of Fitzmaurice Voicework (FV), Trainer for the FV Teacher Certification & Director of Global Outreach for the Fitzmaurice Voicework Institute; award-winning editor of Monologues for Latino Actors & Scenebook for Latinx Actors; core member of Guillermo Gomez Pena’s performance art collective, La Pocha Nostra. She is passionate about social justice in actor training, global and feminist perspectives, and the voz (voice) cultural.
mary louise geiger
Mary Louise (M.L.) Geiger has been a working lighting designer and educator for over 30 years. Currently her work can be seen streaming on All Arts with UNTIL THE FLOOD, by Dael Orlandersmith (Rattlestick Theatre, Center Theatre Group), and LEONORA, LA MAYA AND LE MAESTRA produced by Double Edge theatre. She is currently the Associate Chair and Head of Lighting in the Department of Design for Stage and Film in NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.
Upcoming work: WITCH, OUR DAUGHTERS LIKE PILLARS (Huntington Theatre); THE NEW AGE (Milwaukee Repertory Theatre)
Other recent credits: UNTIL THE FLOOD (Kirk Douglas Theatre, Galway and Edinburgh Festivals, London, UK), WEST SIDE STORY, ANNIE (5th Avenue Theatre)
New York: Off-Broadway: HALFWAY BITCHES GO STRAIGHT TO HEAVEN, GOOD TELEVISION, THE NEW YORK IDEA (Atlantic Theatre); KINDNESS, BLUE DOOR, THE BUSY WORLD IS HUSHED (Playwrights Horizons); FINN, MABOU MINES’ DOLLHOUSE, RED BEADS (Mabou Mines) Broadway: THE CONSTANT WIFE (Roundabout Theatre Company, American Airlines Theatre);
Regional Theatre: ACT Theatre, Arizona Theatre Company, Center Theatre Group, Goodman Theatre, Guthrie Theatre, Indiana Repertory Theatre, Milwaukee Rep, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Portland Center Stage, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Pioneer Theatre, Playmakers Repertory Company, LA Opera
Training: Yale School of Drama
Jennifer S. Holmes has directed over sixty works, including Lorca in a Green Dress at the International Theatre Festival in Barranquilla, Colombia, and Seeing the Deep, a devised piece inspired by Gilgamesh, at the Leon Katz Rodolphi International Theatre Laboratory in Smolyan, Bulgaria. In the classroom, she utilizes performance as a mode of research and pedagogy. Jennifer has participated with the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, Region VIII, serving as a Festival Board member, for three years; coordinated the SDC Directing Program for two years; coordinated the Devised Work Program for two years; and served as an Irene Ryan Respondent for ten years. For six years, Jennifer was the director of the Los Angeles Integrated Arts Program utilizing Los Angeles as a dynamic, experiential teaching laboratory. Jennifer is honored to be invited into The National Theatre Conference.
Joyce Lu is a performing artist, director, and educator. She is the founder of LAPlayback Theatre Company and also performs Playback with Oakland Freedom Theatre and Dailey Innovations, Inc. in conjunction with equity trainings. Joyce is a former member of Body Weather Laboratory LA and has performed with Oguri and Roxanne Steinberg at many venues including The Guggenheim and Getty museums. She practices and performs Balinese dance with Burat Wangi led by Nanik Wenten and I Nyoman Wenten. Joyce is also a certified Feldenkrais Practitioner and an Associate Professor in Theatre and Dance and Asian American Studies at Pomona College.
James C. Nicola has been the Artistic Director of New York Theatre Workshop since 1988. Under his guidance, NYTW has remained steadfast to its founding commitment of nurturing established and emerging theatre artists and supporting bold experimentation with theatrical forms. Mr. Nicola initiated an extensive series of workshop opportunities and has forged a unique community of theatre artists, the Usual Suspects, a group of writers, directors, designers and actors, who form the core of NYTW's artist development activities. As Artistic Director, Mr. Nicola has been instrumental in the development of many NYTW world premieres, including works by Jonathan Larson, Tony Kushner, Doug Wright, Will Power, Caryl Churchill, Enda Walsh, Dael Orlandersmith, Anaïs Mitchell, Heidi Schreck, and Jeremy O. Harris. He is a recipient of the P.T. Barnum Award, Erwin Piscator Award, Miss Lilly Award for supporting women in theater, and an Obie Lifetime Achievement Award.
Mark Russell launched the Under the Radar Festival at St. Ann’s Warehouse in January 2005. UTR focuses on theater based contemporary performance. The festival moved to the Public Theater in 2006 and has become a centerpiece in the New York City theater season; mixing international performances with national and local artists. Russell has also served as the guest artistic director of the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art’s Time Based Arts Festival 2006-2008. He created the Off Center Festival for the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa California, as well as the Off the Wall series at the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He served as an associate curator for the Act French Festival in New York in 2005. From 1983-2004 he was the Executive Artistic Director of Performance Space 122, bringing the space from an artist rental space to a world renowned presenting institution committed to developing the work of New York City artists. Russell has been involved with many artists over his career in dance, music, performance and theater, among them The Blueman Group, Eddie Izzard, Dael Orlandersmith, Elevator Repair Service, Richard Maxwell, Danny Hoch, Young Jean Lee, Spalding Gray, Eric Bogosian, John Leguizamo, Ron K. Brown, David Rousseve, Ghettoriginal, Lisa Kron, and many more. The focus of his work is creating opportunities for artists to reach wider audiences. He and his family are currently living in New York on the upper West Side.
Sophia Skiles is an acclaimed actor and teacher of theater. She was last seen onstage in Michael Kahn's final production for Shakespeare Theatre Company in Ellen McLaughlin's adaptation of The Oresteia (Helen Hayes Award nomination). She has performed in productions directed by May Adrales, Chay Yew, Ralph Peña, Andrei Serban, Mary Zimmerman, Richard Foreman and David Herskovits, among others - in venues throughout New York City, in regional theaters across the United States and Europe. Sophia is Associate Professor of the Practice and Head of Acting of the Brown/Trinity MFA program. 2016 artEquity cohort and 2021 artEquity BIPOC Leadership Circle.
Nancy Smith is co-founder and director of the Great Arizona Puppet Theater since 1983. Under her leadership, the theater bought and restored a historic building in central Phoenix to be a home for puppetry, including an auditorium, workshops and museum. Nancy writes and directs shows and music, and performs at the theater. The company also tours and has been awarded the UNIMA/USA award for Excellence in Puppetry, and the Mayor’s Educational Environmental Award. The theater brings in internationally renowned puppeteers to perform and lead workshops. Nancy is a graduate of Arizona State University and Florida State University.
KINAN VALDEZ is a 25-year ensemble member of El Teatro Campesino. Reared in the collective milieu of the famed social justice theater company founded by his father Luis Valdez, Kinan served as ETC’s Producing Artistic Director until 2017. As a director and theater-maker, Kinan explores the intersections between the mundane and the mythic by combining elements of epic storytelling, popular music and visual pageantry to create participatory theatrical spectacles. Aside from his professional work, Kinan is an Adjunct Professor of Theater Arts at the University of California Santa Cruz and a national advisor for the Latinx Theatre Commons.
ELIZABETH WILLIAMSON is a producer, dramaturg, director and adapter who has worked on and off Broadway, in London’s West End, and around the country. Recent projects include dramaturging The Inheritance (Olivier Award for Best Play) & A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder (Tony Award for Best Musical); creative producing/co-directing Russian Troll Farm online (New York Times “Best Theater of 2020”), adapting/directing Jane Eyre and directing Henry V (Hartford Stage). She has served as Associate Artistic Director/Director of New Play Development for both Hartford Stage and Pioneer Theatre Company. In 2007, she received an NEA Fellowship in Literary Translation. BA, Bennington College, Master’s, Oxford University, trained at the École Jacques Lecoq. Member: SDC, LMDA. www.elizabethwilliamson.org