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Nostalgia Night

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From the Writers

In February 2020, we traveled to State College to meet 12 junior Musical Theatre B.F.A. students. On a Saturday night in the back room of a restaurant, we offered them questions. Who were they? What were their astrological signs? What album could they sing along to, over and over again? What was making them angry right now? What were they scared of? Who did they love? How did they feel about the world? And who did they want to be? Over the course of three hours, we laughed and cried together, we learned about each other and our places in the world.

Just a few weeks later, everyone’s lives changed in ways we couldn’t have even imagined. Suddenly everything moved online, and we found ourselves crafting characters, stories, and songs about a group of young people on “grad night” – a regional tradition that forces high school seniors to spend the night of their graduation all together in a supervised space so as not to endanger themselves before entering into adulthood. We had no interest in writing about the pandemic – but ended up writing something about people on the brink of the rest of their lives, compelled by circumstance to consider their habits, relationships, and all the moments that brought them here.

We were interested in telling a story about young people that treats them as they truly are – intelligent, questioning, hopeful, angry, excited, curious about the world. We are so grateful to the students who inspired us to write these characters and taught us so much about them, and so proud of this new generation of performers who have helped this show grow and change with grace and depth.

The characters in Nostalgia Night are all wondering when their lives will begin – and they’re learning that they have the power to start. We are so excited for you to meet them.

– Sofya Levitsky-Weitz and Matthew McCollum

Author Bios

Sofya Levitsky-Weitz (Book) is a playwright and television/film writer who splits her time between Brooklyn and Los Angeles. She has written for Hulu’s The Dropout, FX’s The Bear, and Gaslit for Starz. Her play this party sucks (on the 2019 Kilroy’s List) was optioned by Mark Gordon Pictures for the stage and film/television rights and will be commercially produced on Broadway next year. Other plays include Cannabis Passover (PWC PlayLabs, 2020-2021 finalist for the O’Neill Playwrights’ Conference), be mean to me (semi-finalist for Premiere Stages at Keane), Gehinnom (semi-finalist for O’Neill Playwrights’ Conference, Playwrights’ Realm, and Princess Grace Award), and Intuitive Men (UCF Pegasus Playlab). She was a 2018-2019 Jerome Fellow and is a current core writer at the Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis. She is an upcoming fellow at the MacDowell Colony and has attended Barn Arts and TOFTE. She has worked on several movies with Michael Showalter, including Fox Searchlight’s The Eyes of Tammy Faye. She got her M.F.A. in Writing for the Screen & Stage from Northwestern University, where she serves on the Advisory Board, and is a member of EST/Youngblood.

Matthew McCollum (Music and Lyrics) is a composer, lyricist, and actor. His musical Black-Eyed Susan (Music/Lyrics; Book with Crystal Skillman) was selected for the 2017 ASCAP/DreamWorks Musical Theatre Workshop (f.k.a. “The Ballad of Brightwater”) and will be presented by New York Theatre Barn this April. Selected works: Crest (Music/Lyrics, Book: Sofya Levitsky-Weitz), 24-Hour Musicals; Songs for the Dead (Concept, Music/Lyrics), Feinstein’s/54 Below; The God Machine (Music/Lyrics, Book: Amanda J. Bermudez), in development; Twelfth Night (original music), Yale School of Drama; WTF Cabaret (vocal arrangements), Williamstown Theatre Festival. He has written songs for projects in development at Netflix and is the resident songwriter for the podcast Hero Club, now in its sixth season. A proud graduate of Yale School of Drama, he now splits his time between New York and his native Los Angeles.

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Nostalgia Night

Book by Sofya Levitsky-Weitz
Music and Lyrics by Matthew McCollum
Choreographed by A. Kikora Franklin
Music directed by Richard Carsey
Directed by John Simpkins
February 10–19, 2022
Pavilion Theatre

Nostalgia Night is a new musical commissioned as part of the New Musicals Initiative. Written as a musical for the Gen Z population, it celebrates connection and the quest to answer the question of who you want to be. Welcome to EnVideon – an underage dance club (there are “Rulez”) set in the 1980s. Wanna dance? Photobooth? Get hypnotized? Take things too far? Do that thing you always wanted to do, say that thing you always wanted to say, before it’s too late? It’s Nostalgia Night, duh. Friendships last beyond high school, right? We’re all getting out of here, right? Laughlin High School Class of 2021 – who do you wanna be?

Covid Policy

Penn State has issued rules and precautions that follow, or may in some cases exceed, guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Please visit the Health and Safety Guidelines prior to attending a University event to ensure you are familiar with the rules and expectations.


Roles Actor
Reby Michelle Lee
Devyn Ryaan Farhadi
Ruthie Marlene Fernandez
Mickey Kris Carrasco
Mel Tyler Hepler
Jade Noi Noria Maeshige
Steph Chloe Evans
Taylor John El-Jor
Kyle Kate Fahey
Bryce Noah Silverman
Hannah Maryrose Brendel
Ariel Teagan Reynolds
Swings Madeline Glave, Amirah Joy Lomax

Musical Numbers

Nostalgia Night takes place at a club called EnVideon. The place is Nevada – in a town on the way to somewhere else. The time is now – on the brink of an identity crisis.

Act I

  • “When the Lights Come On” – Reby and Company
  • “The Rulez!” – Kyle, Hannah
  • “Who Needs an Entrance?” – Steph, Taylor
  • “Big Bad Wolf” – Ruthie
  • “Lit” – Kyle
  • “Another Photograph” – Mel, Jade, Hannah, Ariel, Bryce
  • “Forget about Me/Call Home” – Devyn, Bryce

There will be one 15-minute intermission between acts.

Act II

  • “Just Be Real” – Bryce, Devyn, Taylor, Steph, Jade, Mel
  • “Joybomb!” – Company
  • “Shine” – Mickey
  • “Hot on My Heart” – Reby, Mickey
  • “Lockdown” – Company
  • “Like You Never Had a Breakdown” – Hannah and Company
  • “A Glass of Water” – Taylor, Kyle
  • “Nostalgia” – Steph
  • “A Perfect Ending” – Jade
  • “Another Photograph” (Reprise” – Jade, Mel
  • “Like You Never Heard a Reprise” – Reby
  • “California” – Ariel and Company

Acting company

Maryrose Brendel

Maryrose Brendel (Hannah) is a fourth-year B.F.A. Musical Theatre major from Princeton, New Jersey. Some past Penn State credits include: The Wild Party (Queenie), Songs for A New World (Woman 1), To Kill a Mockingbird (Mayella), A Chorus Line (Kristine), and A Little Night Music (Malla/Swing). She is very grateful to the PSU MT faculty for an incredible four years here and plans to continue performing in New York City post-graduation. Thank you to John, Richard and Kikora for such a wonderful experience in her final show at Penn State. Special thanks to her family and friends (especially MT ’22) for all of their endless support! Special thanks to her family and friends (especially MT ’22) for all of their endless support! @maryrosebrendel

Nostalgia Night actor Kris Carrasco

Kris Carrasco (Mickey) is a UNCSA Drama alumni who is now currently a third-year Musical Theatre major. Previous Penn State credits: The Lucky Boy (Galileo), A Chorus Line (Paul). Select Regional: Chasing Rainbows (world premiere), Gypsy, A Christmas Carol, The Music Man (directed by Chase Brock), Tuck Everlasting (Jesse; directed by Joe Barros). Huge thank you’s to chosen family both past and present. Listen to Kris’ debut single “Galaxy on Fire” on all streaming platforms. @Krisdcarrasco

Nostalgia Night actor John El-Jor

John El-Jor (Taylor) is a fourth-year Musical Theatre major and is thrilled to be in the Pavilion Theatre for his very first time. Previously, John has been seen in Penn State productions of Fun Home, Violet, A Little Night Music, A Chorus Line, and other projects. John would like to send a special thank you to his friends and family, and the Nostalgia Night team. Social Media: @johneljor

Chloe Evans

Chloe Evans (Steph) is a first-year Musical Theatre major from Dallas, Texas, and is so excited to be making her Penn State Centre Stage debut. She is so excited to have taken on this challenging show and role with her talented castmates and crew. This has been such a rewarding process and she is so grateful to have been a small part of it. Hope you enjoy the show! @chloe_g_evans

Nostalgia Night actor Kate Fahey

Kate Fahey (Kyle) is a fourth-year Musical Theatre major from Philadelphia. Some Penn State credits include A Little Night Music (Anne Egerman) and Kirsten Child’s The Lucky Boy (Princess Vocal Fry). Andrew Lippa’s The Wild Party (Mae) and Violet (Young Violet). Thanks to John, Richard, Kikora, Sofya and Matthew for a wonderful last Penn State theatre experience. So much love to her family and the MT class of ’22 for their endless support. Kate has been so grateful for her journey here at Penn State and is ready to continue her acting adventures in New York City once she graduates this spring! @katefahey4

Nostalgia Night actor Ryaan Farhadi

Ryaan Farhadi (Devyn) is a third-year Musical Theatre major and is so excited to be a part of this vibrant show. Recent credits include A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Demetrius), Little Shop of Horrors (Orin), A Chorus Line, and The Lucky Boy. Huge thanks to the cast and team, his friends and family for their love and support, and John for the opportunity to explore another incredible new work. After Nostalgia Night, he will be appearing as Archie Beaton in Penn State’ Centre Stage’s Brigadoon. @ryaanfarhadi

Nostalgia Night actor Marlene Fernandez

Marlene Fernandez (Ruthie) is a current third-year B.F.A in Musical Theatre major. She is beyond happy to have had such an incredible experience collaborating with even more incredible people. She cannot wait to share this new work with the people she loves. “Shout out to my Familia! Dominican and Proud!”

Nostalgia Night actor Madeline Glave

Madeline Glave (Swing: Reby/Kyle/Ariel) is a current first-year Musical Theatre Major, from Los Angeles. This is her first project at Penn State, and she is so thrilled that it is a new works production! She is so grateful for this opportunity to be a swing. She has loved this entire experience and cant wait for more to come! She would like to thank her friends, family, cast, crew, and John for all of their love and support. @maddyyglavee

Nostalgia Night actor Tyler Hepler

Tyler Hepler (Mel) is a third-year Musical Theater major at Penn State. He is so excited to be a part of this show and share the stage with his castmates! Tyler has been in A Chorus Line (Mark), The Wild Party (Ensemble), and The Lucky Boy (Swing) at Penn State. He is extremely grateful to his friends and family for the constant support and love. Thank you for coming to see the show! @heplertyler

Nostalgia Night actor Michelle Lee

Michelle Lee (Reby) is a second-year Musical Theatre major and is ecstatic about being in her first new work musical! Last fall you may have seen her in The Wild Party dancing away in the ensemble. In addition to performing, she is on the Student Diversity Committee board for the School of Theatre and is highly active in Camp Kesem’s chapter in Pennsylvania! She is beyond grateful to have had this opportunity and cannot wait to share the stage with such beautiful, talented human beings. This production would not have been possible without the help from everyone in the cast and crew. @minjumichellelee

Nostalgia Night actor Amirah Joy Lomax

Amirah Joy Lomax (Swing: Ruthie/Jade/Steph) is thrilled to have been a part of the new musical, Nostalgia Night! You may have seen her last fall in the ensemble of Centre Stage’s production of Andrew Lippa’s The Wild Party. In addition to being a current second-year Musical Theatre major, Amirah Joy is a co-coordinator for Camp Kesem, Central PA’s Communications and Logistics position, and a member of Broadway of Tomorrow’s Bridge Initiative. After the run of Nostalgia Night, Amirah Joy will perform in the Cabaret of Many Colors. Many thanks to the cast and crew! @amirahjoylomax

Nostalgia Night actor Noi Maeshige

Noi Nuria Maeshige (Jade) is a second-year Musical Theatre major at Penn State. She is overjoyed to get to be a part of her first new musical! Outside of performing, she is the community outreach chair of the Student Diversity Committee in the School of Theatre, where she connects fellow students to resources that help educate and grow. She is a proud alumni of the Orange County School of the Arts in California. Having graduated from the same high school as the writer, Sofya, she is ecstatic this is her first new musical. She thanks Matthew, Sofya and John for entrusting her with this beautiful story. And thanks to the cast and crew, as well as mom and dad. She would not be her if it were not for everyone around her. @helloi.noi

Nostalgia Night actor Teagan Reynolds

Teagan Reynolds (Ariel) is over the moon to be in her first Centre Stage production at Penn State! She is currently a third-year Musical Theatre major and recently portrayed Alison in the program project of Fun Home. She also created the music and lyrics for the @emilydickinsonmusical, which previously premiered in Salt Lake City. Teagan is beyond grateful for this entire production team, as well as all the support she’s received from her family and friends. @teaganjenay

Noah Silverman

Noah Silverman (Bryce) is a current fourth-year student in the B.F.A Musical Theatre program from Tarrytown, New York. Noah’s credits include The Curious Incident… (Christopher), Spamalot (Patsy), A Chorus Line (Greg), and Pronoun (Mum). Noah would love to thank John, Kikora, Richard, Sofya, and Matthew for an incredible final experience at Penn State. Graduate of Walnut Hill School for the Arts. Noah is grateful for the support of his friends and family and couldn’t be more excited to tell this beautiful story! @ndsilverman

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A kaleidoscopic spiral of rainbow-colored blocks overlaying an indistinct, dark architectural background.

Artistic Team

John Simpkins

John Simpkins (Director) is head of Musical Theatre at Penn State and a professional director specializing in new musicals. He has directed World Premieres of Love in Hate Nation (Joe Iconis/ Two River Theater); three-time Drama Desk nominated Bloodsong of Love: The Rock and Roll Spaghetti Western (Joe Iconis/ Ars Nova); The Black Suits (Joe Iconis/ Kirk Douglas Theatre); Legendale (Fredericia Theater, Denmark); Raging Skillet (Theaterworks Hartford); The Bus (59E59 Theatre); ReWrite (Urban Stages); The Plant That Ate Dirty Socks (Lucille Lortel); Things to Ruin (co-conceived and directed at Ars Nova, Second Stage). Regional: Quartet (Sharon Playhouse, starring Elizabeth Franz); Georgie (Sharon Playhouse, starring Ed Dixon); The Black Suits (Barrington Stage, starring Ben Platt); Merrily We Roll Along (Sharon Playhouse, starring Jason Tam, Lauren Marcus, A.J. Shively); Legendale (Dayton Human Race, starring Max Crumm); Damn Yankees (Engeman Theatre, starring Andre De Shields, Felicia Finley); Hairspray (NC Theatre); A Wonderful Life (Engeman Theatre); Annie & Cabaret (Sacramento Music Circus); Evita (Lyric Theatre Oklahoma). At Penn State, he has directed the new musicals Love in Hate Nation, The Last Day, and The Lucky Boy.

Richard Carsey (Music Director) has a varied career as conductor, pianist, actor and writer. He has been the music director for Disney on Classic, a concert tour of Japan, featuring 8 singers from the United States and the 50-piece Orchestra Japan. US national tours include The Phantom of the Opera, La Cage aux Folles, and Little House on the Prairie, the Musical. For many years he was artistic director and principal conductor of the Skylight Opera Theatre in Milwaukee, conducting over 60 productions, including several world premieres. He is a frequent guest conductor for symphony orchestras across the US, often working with Windborne Music, which presents classic rock and roll with orchestra. As an actor, Richard has appeared in the play 2 Pianos, 4 Hands in regional theaters across the US and Canada. As a pianist and arranger, he has performed in over 25 countries. At Lincoln Center Theater in New York he was music supervisor for the world premiere musical A Minister’s Wife. On Broadway he was music director for The House of Blue Leaves, starring Ben Stiller and Edie Falco. He is a conductor for The Phantom of the Opera on Broadway, where he also conducted the revival of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Carousel with Joshua Henry, Jessie Mueller, and Renée Fleming. His musical Not Even Remotely, co-written with Steve Kovaks, had its world premiere June-July 2021 at Northern Sky Theatre.

Jamie Johns

Jamie Johns (Associate Music Director) , composer/conductor/pianist, served as musical director of the North American tour of The Phantom of the Opera, was the resident music director at Skylight Music Theatre, director of Opera and Musical Theatre at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, and education director at Orlando Opera. Regional opera: Romeo and Juliette, Carmen, The Marriage of Figaro, La Traviata. Regional music theatre: Avenue Q; No, No, Nanette; Rent; Cabaret; The Last Five Years.

A. Kikora Franklin (Choreographer) is an associate professor of theatre/dance and teaches West African, hip hop, and Mojah dance. She has performed, choreographed, and taught in cities across the globe, including Linz, Austria; Grahamstown, South Africa; Dakar, Senegal; Minas Gerais, Brazil; and throughout China, Europe, and the United States. Franklin has also performed and choreographed for the Atlanta Hawks dance team. At Penn State, her creative work and research focuses on developing the Mojah dance technique, an original style that fuses modern (Horton and Dunham), jazz, West African, and hip hop movement into one form. Franklin’s interests also include studying the cultural and artistic expressions of the African Diaspora, the development and evolution of contemporary African and African-American concert and social dance, and using arts education as civic engagement. Franklin shares her passion for dance and culture with young students as the artistic director of Roots of Life, a performing arts ensemble based out of the State College Area School District.

Alexander Sage Oyen (Orchestrations) is an New York City-based songwriter/orchestrator/producer. As an arranger and producer he has worked with Nick Blaemire (A Little More Alive, available on streaming music platforms), Joe Iconis, Lauren Marcus, Timothy Huang (American Morning available on streaming music platforms) among others. As a songwriter his songs have over 10 million streams on Spotify and he is hard at work on several different musical theatre projects. His solo pop album, “If I Gave My Heart To You,” will be released by No Reverse Records on February 18. He has a beautiful wife named Rachel and the cutest dog ever named Cheddar Bay Biscuit, both of whom keep him going.

Nostalgia Night actor Mia Irwin

Mia Irwin (Scenic Designer) is a second-year M.F.A. candidate in Scenic Design from Durango, Colorado. Mia received her B.A. in Theatre Arts and a minor in Art and Design from the University of Northern Colorado in May 2020. She is an experienced scenic artist, having worked for several companies, including The Rev Theatre Company, The Little Theatre of the Rockies, Acomb, Ostendorf and Associates, LLC, Candlelight Dinner Playhouse, and continues to work as a scenic artist at Penn State. Her previous credits include the scenic design for The Wild Party (2021, Penn State Centre Stage), Dry Land (SOT), Eurydice (2019, UNC), associate scenic designs for Into the Woods (2019, Little Theatre of the Rockies), and The Drowsy Chaperone (2018, UNC). Upcoming projects include the assistant scenic design for the Penn State Capital Campaign.

Eleonore Maczura

Eleonore Maczura (Costume Designer) is a fourth-year student pursuing a B.F.A. in Costume Design and Technology. She has been fascinated with art, costumes, storytelling, and theatre since she was young, and she is thrilled to design her first show at Penn State Centre Stage. She has a lot of thanks to give: the actors, and design and production team, for their talent and drive; the costume shop and wardrobe team for their dedication and grace; her mentors Richard, Charlene, and Laura, for their support and words of wisdom; her parents, who nurtured her love for the arts; and to her sisters, friends, and partner, who have endlessly supported her through thick and thin! Her experiences in Costume Design and Technology include, but are not limited to The Wild Party (asst. costume designer), Brigadoon (first-hand), Angels In America (wardrobe supervisor), A Little Night Music (asst. costume designer), and more. See her past, present, and future works at Enjoy the show!

David Reingold

David Reingold (Lighting Designer) is a fourth-year student pursuing a B.F.A. in Lighting Design. He has a true passion for new and original works of theatre, and he couldn’t be more thrilled to engage in this beautiful piece of storytelling. “Many thanks to John for championing new musicals here at Penn State, and to John, Richard, Kikora, and Claire for creating a fun, exploratory rehearsal space and allowing me to drop by whenever I wanted! Thanks also to Quinn, Mason, Anna, and Ken for actualizing the lighting design and for not balking at the amount of LED tape we requested.” Up next you can see David’s work in Bone Play (March 25-27), an original play written by Penn State students about bodies, gender, death, and the future…

Michael Aboah (Sound Designer) is a fourth-year student from the Washington, D.C. area pursuing Lighting and Sound design. Alongside theatre he is completing is IST degree with the intention of becoming an app developer for theatre. This is his first large-scale sound design along with it being a world premiere musical! Many thanks to the entire team production team but especially: Kyle, Maggie, Carlo, Michael Smedley, and Carter for helping bring the sound design to life. Michael’s past productions include A Midsummer’s Nights Dream (production audio), The Curious Incident of the Dog and the Night-Time (projections tech), The Last Five Years (projections tech), Dance Concert (sound designer), and Hooded… (sound board operator).

Sydney Smith (Projections Designer) , from Cheltenham, Pennsylvania, is going into his fourth and final year at Penn State as a B.F.A. Theatre Design and Technology candidate. He has had the opportunity to be a part of and design multiple shows like The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Hooded or Being Black for Dummies, the Dance Concert, and more. With his final show in the school he will show what he has learned throughout his time at Penn State.

Steven Rimke (Vocal Coach) teaches Voice and Speech for the B.F.A. Acting and Musical Theatre programs in the School of Theatre at Penn State. Steven has coached theatrical productions in Canada, England, Malaysia and the United States. Steven also provides coaching to members of the transgender community, aiding in their ability to have their voice safely match their preferred identity. You may have recently Steven clowning with colleague Malena Ramirez at the Happy Valley Latin Festival.

Claire Phillips (Production Stage Manager) is a third-year B.F.A. Stage Management student and could not be happier to be making her Penn State Centre Stage PSM debut with Nostalgia Night! She would like to thank her wonderful stage management and creative teams for making this process such a pleasure, her family and boyfriend for their endless support, and the entire cast and crew for all their incredible work. Previous credits include The Wild Party (ASM), Romeo and Juliet (ASM), Yerma (PSM), and Eurydice (PSM).

Evelyn Murphy-Welconish

Evelyn Murphy-Welconish (Assistant Stage Manager) is a second-year B.F.A. Stage Management student from Boulder, Colorado. She is thrilled to be working in the Pavilion Theatre with such an amazing group of people! Favorite credits have been The Wild Party (ASM) and Seawall (ASM) at Penn State Centre Stage, SpongeBob Squarepants: The Musical (ASM/Calling SM) at The Spark, and High School Musical. Evelyn is excited to continue her growth in the stage management program and wants to thank all of those around her that support her! Be sure to look out for her in upcoming productions.

Emily Smith (Assistant Stage Manager) is a fourth-year student pursuing a B.F.A. in Stage Management and Sound Design. She is so excited to be working with such an amazingly talented and kind-hearted cast, crew, and production/design team! This is her first official ASM role in college and she couldn’t have asked for a better group to work with. Previous credits include The Wild Party (Production Audio), The Last Five Years (Sound Designer), and The Osaze Project (Sound Designer).

Cassidy Burke

Cassidy Burke (Technical Director) is in the fourth year of her Design and Technology major with an emphasis in Technical Direction. She also pursued and received a Business Fundamentals Certificate through Smeal College of Business. She is very fortunate to have worked with such an amazing team for her final show before graduating in May. She would like to thank her family, friends, mentors, and partner for believing in her and always being there for her when she needed them all the most. Her past credits include but are not limited to assistant technical director for The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and the co-technical director for the Spring Dance Concert Moving Forward 2021 at Penn State. Cassidy’s plans post-graduation include moving to Florida so she can pursue her dreams of working at Walt Disney World. You can see more of Cassidy’s work at

A group of glittering, faceted glass disco balls on an inky black background punctuated with spots of glimmering light.

Supporting Roles

Every production requires so many more individuals than those you see on the stage. These are the people who make sure that the show, indeed, does go on.

Production Staff

Assistant Director/Production Assistant
Jackson Pavlik

Associate Music Director
Jamie Johns

Production Assistant
John Carpino

Asst. Stage Managers
Emily Smith
Evelyn Murphy-Welconish

Assistant Technical Director
Sydney Smith

Head Carpenter
John Geisz

Staff Scenic Carpenters
Stephen Harris
Chris Shuey

Scenic Carpenters
Riley Allsop
Nicolas Baror
Jack Briggs
Cassidy Lyn Burke
Clare Cawley
Daniel Dembek
Maxwell Doherty
Victor Hernandez
Kaydee Oliver
Lauren Petrocelli
Raymond Reehill
Emily Simpson
Sydney Smith

Scenic Charge Artist
Stephanie Lynn Nimick

Scenic Artists
Rosalind Isquith
Mia Irwin
Beatriz Chung Ore

Assistant Costume Designer
Beatrix Stickney

Costume Technical upervisor
Laura Kay Robinson

Costume Shop Manager
Diane Toyos

Taylor Green
Jessica Hill
Tyler Phillips
Erin Stanek
Erin Stumm
Keagan Styes

Jeremy Eiben

Wardrobe Supervisor
Jeremy Eiben

Wardrobe Crew
Andrew Palmieri
John Michael Rosenblum
Regine Torres

Asst. Lighting Designer
Quinn McDonald

Production Electrician
Mason LoPiccolo

Asst. Production Electrician
Anna Wagner

Light Board Operator
Nicolas Baror

Asst. Sound Designer
Maggie Schlachter

Production Audio
Carlo Castro Jr.

Projections Board Operator
Nicolas Baror

Carter Celgin
Jordan Frank

Michael Smedley

Spot Operator
Ronnie Spoto

John Carpino

Deck Crew
Dante D’Antonio
Gage Gardiner
Lavanya Anantharaman
Ethan Peterson

Fly Operators
Kaydee Oliver
Ronnie Spoto

Properties Shop Supervisor
Jay Lasnik

Properties Manager
Emily Simpson

Assistant Properties Manager
Lorena Sandoval

Properties Artisans
Andre Brandao
Jack Briggs
Sam Forest

Social Media Coordinator
Curtis Trowbridge

Production Crew

The following students will support the costume, scenic, and electric crews this semester.

  • Michael D Aboah
  • William Adams
  • Riley Allsop
  • Francesca Alvidrez
  • Lavanya Anantharaman
  • Hannah Bank
  • Nicolas Baror
  • Hunter Belisle
  • Mackenzie Borine
  • Andre Brandao
  • Lauren Bretl
  • Jack Briggs
  • Cassidy Lyn Burke
  • John Carpino
  • Carlo Castoro Jr.
  • Adrian Castro
  • Sage Castro
  • Clare Cawley
  • Carter Celgin
  • John Chambers
  • Beatriz Chung
  • Bree Clark
  • Celia Craig
  • Ava Cronin
  • Dante D’Antonio
  • Daniel Dembek
  • Sabine Desamours
  • Maxwell Doherty
  • Jeremy Eiben
  • Chloe Evans
  • Breanna Fais
  • Hannah Flade
  • Samantha Forrest
  • Jordan Frank
  • Gage Gardiner
  • James Gibney Jr.
  • Maddy Glave
  • Julianne Greco
  • Lauren Greenfield
  • Kathleen Griffith
  • Kattie Hasenecz
  • David Heguy
  • Victor Hernandez
  • Jessica L Hill
  • Zharia Hill
  • Taylor Hufnagel
  • Anan Hussein
  • Mia Catherine Irwin
  • Rosalind C Isquith
  • Trinity Jackson
  • Yunke Jiang
  • Nadia Khorshid
  • Dillon Kraus
  • Jonathan Langberg
  • Gailyn Lee
  • Michelle Lee
  • Yeji Lee
  • Amirah Lomax
  • Mason LoPiccolo
  • Anna Lustig
  • Jillian Ma
  • Eleonore L MacZura
  • Noi Maeshige
  • Natalie Maguire
  • Anna Martin
  • Lucy Martin
  • Quinn McDonald
  • Nicole McFadden
  • Michel McGillian
  • Riley McKean
  • Mackenzie Miller
  • Owain Milliken
  • Charles Mrlack
  • Kyra Muramoto
  • Evelyn Murphy-Welconish
  • Flynn Nolen
  • Kaydee Oliver
  • James Palmieri
  • Maria Papadopoulos
  • LP Patterson
  • Valentine Regla Pesola
  • Ethan Peterson
  • Lauren Petrocelli
  • Claire Phillips
  • Tyler Phillips
  • Vincent Wolf Pilone
  • Clarlie Plante
  • Zachary Rebarchak
  • Demanie Redhead
  • Raymond Reehill
  • Joel Rehn
  • Joey Reihart
  • Justin Roldan
  • John Michael Rosenblum
  • Hailey Sanchez
  • Skyler Sandner
  • Lorena Sandoval
  • Kyle Sheare
  • Maggie Schlachter
  • Zachary Schwartz
  • Sarah Schwidel
  • Emily Simpson
  • Madeline Simpson
  • Zandra Siple
  • Kayla Sliger
  • Michael Smedley Jr
  • Ronnie Spoto
  • Erin Stanek
  • Victoria Steward
  • Beatrix Stickney
  • Thomas Strong
  • Keagan Styes
  • Paige Taylor
  • Matthew Thompson
  • Rafaela Torchia Carvalho Castro
  • Regine Torres
  • Megan Totz
  • Eda Uyanik
  • Sylvan Vanstory
  • Jovanni Aparicio Velez
  • Sunakshi Verma
  • Anna Wagner
  • Jack Warner
  • Jasmine Ward
  • Connor Westhoff
  • Stacy Wiener
  • Georgia Wood
  • Austen Yim


Keyboard I
Richard Carsey

Keyboard II
Jamie Johns

Tom Cody

Guitar II
Jesse Tyler Moore

Justin Dorsey

Kyle Haust

Penn State Centre Stage Administration

Producing Artistic Director
Rick Lombardo

Interim Production Manager
Ronda Craig

Interim Technical Director
Stephen Frausto

Marketing Director
Cheri Sinclair

Business Manager
Janet Bergamaschi

Arts Ticket Center
Tracy Noll – Sales Director
Christine Igoe – Ticket Manager
Shannon Arney – Assistant Ticket Manager
Len Codispot-Anderson – Group Sales and Development Relations Manager
Joi McKenzie – Ticket Sales and Customer Service Manager

House Management
Jojo Sugg
Sierra Lucas

School of Theatre Administration

Director of the School of Theatre
Rick Lombardo

Associate Director for Instruction
Dan Robinson

Associate Director for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
A. Kikora Franklin

Graduate Officer
Dan Robinson

School of Theatre
Judy King – Administrative Coordinator
Carrianne Love – Academic Records
Mark Powell – Staff Assistant
Shannon Ritter – Admissions and Recruitment

School of Theatre Faculty + Staff

Rick Lombardo
Rich Biever
Susan H. Schulman
John Simpkins

Steve Broadnax III
A. Kikora Franklin
Erik Raymond Johnson
Rick Lombardo
Sam Osheoff
Steve Snyder

Musical Theatre Acting
John Simpkins, Nagle Family Endowed Chair in Musical Theatre

Musical Theatre Singing
Raymond Sage
Gabriella Sam
Gwen Walker

Music Direction
Richard Carsey
Melissa Yanchak

Michele Dunleavy
Chaz Wolcott
A. Kikora Franklin
Linda Hildebrand
Rebecca Maciejczyk

Elizabeth Bonjean, Ph.D.
William Doan, Ph.D.
Jeanmarie Higgins, Ph.D.
Susan Russell, Ph.D.
Robert W. Schneider
Sebastian Trainor
Malcolm Wolmack, Ph.D.
Michael Schweikardt

Steven Rimke
Kris Danford

Steve Broadnax III
Elisha Clark Halpin
Erik Raymond Johnson
Megan Moore

Curtis Craig
Andrew Haag

Scenic Design
Dan Robinson
Milagros Ponce de León
Michael Schweikardt

Costume Design
Richard St. Clair
Charlene Gross

Costume Technology
Laura Robinson

Lighting Design
William Kenyon
Ken Friedhoff

Sound Design
Curtis Craig
Andrew Haag
Kyle Jensen

Stage Management
Geoff Boronda
Ronda Craig

Technical Direction
Stephen Frausto

Scene Shop
John E Geisz
Stephen Harris
Chris Shuey

Properties Shop
Jay Lasnik – Supervisor

Paint Shop
Stephanie Nimick – Supervisor

Costume Shop
Diane Toyos – Supervisor
Amanda Ferg – Draper

  1. Member of Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers
  2. Member of Actors’ Equity Association
  3. Member of United Scenic Artists, Local USA-829
  4. Member of International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees
  5. Member of The Dramatists Guild
  6. Member of National Writers Union
  7. Local 802 American Federation of Musicians
  8. ETCP Electrician
  9. Member of The Society of Professional Props Artisan Managers

School of Theatre Graduate Students

Graduate students fill a number of key positions in the School of Theatre. Common roles include assistant director, paint supervisor, charge artist, property master, first hand, draper, and musical director, to name a few.

Costume Design
Jeremy Eiben
Zandra Siple

Costume Production
Taylor Greene
Jessica Hill
Tyler Phillips
Erin Stanek
Keagan Styes
Erin Stumm

Musical Theatre Directing
Jennifer Delac
Alison Morooney

Music Directing
Harrison Collins
Emily Orr

Scenic Design
André Brandao
Beatriz Chung
Mia Irwin
Rosalind Isquith
Lorena Sandoval

Technical Direction
Raymond Reehill

Penn State Centre Stage Community Council 21–22

Council Members
Judith Albrecht
John Carder
Katie Dawes
Connie DiNunzio
Kay Kustanbauter
Kevin Roe
Jerry Sawyer
Jeane Singer
Judith V. Swisher
Susan Werner
Barbara King-Wilson

Ex Officio Members
B. Stephen Carpenter II
Rick Lombardo
Janet Bergamaschi
Robyn Krause-Hale
John Simpkins
Cheri Sinclair

Professional Member Organizations

Actors’ Equity Association

NAST – National Association of Schools of Theatre

SDC – The Director and Choreographer are members of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, a national theatrical labor union.

SPAM – The Society of Properties Artisan Managers

United Scenic Artists Local USA 829

U/RTA – University Resident Theatre Association
Member of U/RTA, the country’s oldest and largest consortium of professional theatre training graduate programs and associated professional theatre companies, and utilizes that association to facilitate and manage contracts with members of the various theatrical unions. These include Actors’ Equity Association, the Society of Stage Directors and Choreograhers, and United Scenic Artists.

USITT – United States Institute for Theatre Technology

In Fond Remembrance

Steven L. Herb

Centre Stage Council 2018–21
Council President 2019–20, 2020–21

Penn State Centre Stage appreciates Steve’s commitment, his wonderful, friendly, lightness, and inclusiveness of ideas and spirit.

“Good night, good night! Parting is such sweet sorrow, That I shall say good night till it be morrow.”

– Romeo and Juliet, Act II, Scene I

Steven Herb, wearing thin-framed glasses, with eyes twinkling and a greyish beard.

Make a gift

We are able to do what we do because you believe in us.

Our students, faculty, and visiting professionals bring tremendous talent to the stage and you give them a stage to stand on. Our choreographers, costume and scenic designers, lighting technicians, and all of our artistic team envision new worlds and you give them the resources to realize these worlds. While Penn State provides a foundation for our theatrical productions, we rely on the generosity of our community to provide the additional resources needed to perform at the highest level. Your gifts provide financial assistance with show rights, costumes, technical equipment, set materials, music, marketing, and supporting visiting artists and educators who come to share their craft.

You can make a tax-deductible donation to Penn State Centre Stage online using the link below, or by phoning 888-800-9163. Specify “Centre Stage–XAFPS” when you make a credit card gift by phone or online. You can also mail a check to: PSCS/Penn State, 116 Theatre Building, University Park, PA 16802-1506.

Make a gift online to Centre Stage

Blurred, intersecting and repeating light geometries, all with a purple cast

Become a Donor. Penn State School of Theatre is home to one of the finest theatre training programs in the country. We invite you to have a richer theatre experience by becoming a donor to Penn State Centre Stage. Let our students know that you love the theatre and care about ensuring opportunity for artists.

Your patronage will also provide assistance for students with financial need to take advantage of extra-curricular opportunities such as master classes, regional theatre productions, and conference participation. By supporting Penn State Centre Stage, you support a home where young artists discover their gifts and you show them the impact that theatre has on everyone it touches.

We’re thankful for your partnership and philanthropy, and we applaud every person who joins us in our mission to make our theatre training program one of the top ranked in the country. We can’t wait to show you what’s next.

Ensuring the Future of Live Professional Theatre

2021–22 Season Donors

Donors, Grants, Sponsorships and In-Kind Contributions to the 2021–22 Season

Your loyalty and support have been the driving force behind our success. Thank you for your help in creating something truly special in this community. The list below includes donors to PSCS from June 2021 – January 2022. Every effort was made to ensure its accuracy. We apologize in advance for any errors or omissions!

Producer ($5,000 & up)

  • Happy Valley Adventure Bureau
  • Pennsylvania Council on the Arts (a state agency)
  • Dennis Gioia & Judith Albrecht

Director ($2,500–$4,999)

Performer ($1,000–$2,499)

  • Rosalie & Roger Dietz
  • Charles & J. Ann Dumas
  • Blake & Linda Gall
  • Ann & George Johnstone
  • Pieter & Lida Ouwehand
  • Jeane & Richard Singer
  • John & Judith Vicary Swisher
  • Mark & Anne Toniatti


  • Lou & Bernadette Barth
  • Catherine A. Bresee
  • Alan Brown
  • Bruce Fleischer & Heidi Nicholas
  • John & Katie Dawes
  • Steven Herb & Sara Willoughby-Herb
  • John & Jackie Hook
  • Theodore & Casey Hovick
  • Bill Jaffe
  • Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh
  • Kitchen Kaboodle
  • Kay Kustanbauter
  • Colleen & Frank Miceli
  • Helen Manfull
  • Kevin & Joy Roe
  • Robert & Karen Shute
  • David & Susan Werner

Benefactor ($100–$499)

  • Lynn & Ellis Abramson
  • Ruth Bank
  • Ned & Inga Book
  • Lynn Donald Breon
  • John & Deborah Carder in memory of Shirley Palermo
  • David & Ellen Cavanaugh
  • Mimi Barash Coppersmith
  • Susan Del Ponte & Carole Pearce
  • George & Tamara Downsbrough
  • John & Connie DiNunzio
  • Earl & Susan Graham
  • Don & Mary Heller
  • Vicki Wedler Herrie & Joseph Herrie
  • Linda Higginson & Susan Youtz
  • Patricia & Jay Hummer
  • Robyn Krause-Hale & Rick Roush
  • Donald & Cynthia Koss
  • Barry & Judith Kur
  • Harry Kropp & Edward Legutko
  • Kirk & Sandra Larter
  • Benson & Christine, Lichtig Nittany Clothiers, Inc.
  • David & Sharon Lieb
  • Lawrence Lokman & Rhonda Seaton
  • Rick Lombardo & Rachel Harker
  • Harold & Priscilla McFerren
  • Sayaka Ninomiya
  • Janet Pontius
  • Kathleen & David Rue
  • Jerry & Martha Sawyer
  • Christopher & Jennifer Shuey
  • Lou Silverman & Veronica Samborsky
  • Cheri Sinclair
  • Patricia & Michael Spicer
  • Benchamas Sporay & Thomas Renehan Jr.
  • William & Kimberly Townes
  • Sebastian & Jeanmarie Trainor
  • Renaisssance Charitable Foundation
  • Daniel & Linda Trevino
  • Larry Ullman & Jessica Currall
  • Joseph & Maureen Yanoshik

Friend ($5–$99)

  • Janet Bergamaschi
  • Richard & Heidi Biever
  • Gay Fisher
  • Barry & Debra Gallagher
  • Joshua Gitelson & Hari Osofsky
  • Claudia Gulley
  • Alisha Hartley
  • Linda & Robert Hendrickson
  • Susan & George Henning
  • Janis Jones
  • Marla & Thomas Kane
  • Janet Quirsfeld Lindsay
  • Heather Low
  • Lisa & Andrew Marzka
  • Stanley & Patricia Mayers
  • Christopher & Kathryn Maxwell
  • Donna, Robert & James McDougal
  • Richard & Sharleen Nichols
  • Sayaka Ninomiya
  • Kay & Ernest Salvino
  • Jennifer & Christopher Shuey
  • Patricia & Michael Spicer
  • Nancy Wolf

School of Theatre Endowments

  • Mona Shibley Bird Memorial Scholarship in Theatre
  • Susan Browning Theatre Award
  • Kenton H. Broyles Trustee Scholarship
  • Irvin and Lois E. Cohen Fund for the School of Theatre (named annual fund)
  • Margaret M. and George A. Downsbrough Endowment for Penn State Centre Stage
  • Manuel Duque Award
  • Mack Emmert Trustee Scholarship
  • June H. Ford Memorial Award for Musical Theatre Dance Performance
  • Frances Foster Award in Theatre
  • French Undergraduate Award in Theatre
  • Sid and Helen Friedman Endowment for Penn State Centre Stage
  • Blake and Linda Gall Musical Theatre Excellence Fund (named annual fund)
  • Blake and Linda Gall Scholarship in Musical Theatre
  • Blake and Linda Gall Trustee Matching Scholarship
  • Susan Jane Gaul Memorial Award
  • Anne Gibson Award for Professional Development in Theatre Design and Technology
  • John Lloyd Hanson Scholarship in Musical Theatre v
  • John L. Hanson and Neil E. Hoff Trustee Matching Scholarship
  • James E.Hess and Suzanne Scurfield Hess Endowment for the University Resident Theatre Company
  • Arlene and E.Z. Jackson Scholarship in Musical Theatre
  • Honey Jaffe Musical Theatre Program Excellence Fund
  • Kissin’ Annie Endowed Scholarship in Musical Theatre
  • Mabel Reed Knight Scholarship
  • Robert E. Leonard Award
  • Willie Leone Endowed Scholarship Fund in Music Theatre
  • Wyllis Leonhard Endowment for Music and Dance
  • Lethbridge-Jackson Awards
  • Helen and Lowell Manfull Theatre Scholarship
  • Mattie C. and A. Laura Mateer Theatre Artist-in-Residence Fund
  • William E. McTurk Endowment for Musical Theatre
  • Musical Theatre Endowment Fund
  • Nagle Family Endowed Chair in Musical Theatre
  • Dorothy Briant O’Connor Endowed Scholarship Fund in Musical Theatre
  • Penn State Centre Stage Class of 1935 Endowment
  • Irene Richards Memorial Scholarship
  • School of Theatre Design and Technology Alumni Conference Scholarship (named annual fund)
  • Todd Anthony Sloan Scholarship for Musical Theatre
  • Oliver Smith American Design Award
  • Graham B. and Sandra K. Spanier Student Development Fund for the Musical Theatre Program
  • Henrietta Thomas Memorial Award for Musical Theatre Vocal Performance
  • Peter G. and Ann C. Tombros Endowed Scholarship in Musical Theatre
  • Zewan Trustee Scholarship

Atherton Society

Penn State’s Atherton Society recognizes individuals who have made a provision for a planned gift to benefit the University. To learn more about creating your legacy with the School of Theatre, contact Robyn Krause-Hale, director of arts advancement at or call 814-863-4079

  • Michael R. Chapman
  • Irvin and Lois Cohen
  • Roger and Rosalie Dietz
  • Charles D. Fasnacht
  • Bill Jaffe
  • Richard G. Johnston and Sarah Ann Gallagher
  • Helen Manfull
  • Carrie M. Robbins