MFA Class of 2014
Vickie Curtis: Received her BA at Connecticut College and went on to teach Arts and Humanities at project-based high schools in the Boston area. In class, she revisits classics and devises original theatre with her students as a means for teaching life lessons, literature, history, and the social sciences. Vickie founded the theatre program at Meridian Academy: Performing Arts and Activism. She is at work developing a Summer Theatre Institute for teachers in collaboration with Richard Weingartner and members of the Wayland Theatre Ensemble while she hones her own storytelling practice at Naropa.
Kebrina Josefina De Jesus: Born in New York and raised in Miami, Kebrina was bitten by the acting bug at 12 years old. Kebrina has performed in a variety of theatre shows from stage to indie films. Upon receiving her Bachelors of Communications and Theatre at Millersville University, Kebrina took a new journey to Dallas to pursue dance. Since moving to Texas in 2008 Kebrina has built her own company, Casa de Baile Traveling Studio. Casa de Baile's services include dance instruction, performance and event planning. She has performed with dance companies Samba Dallas, Salsa Sunrise and Tropico Entertainment. Kebrina embarked a new chapter in Boulder at Naropa University to develop into a Performance Artist and one day become a Professor of Theatre and Dance.
Andrea Dudziak: A practitioner/scholar who recently obtained her Masters of Arts in Theatre Studies at Florida State University where she focused on musical theatre studies and the representation of mentally–ill women in American drama. In her hometown of Buffalo, NY, she worked with the local Infringement Festival to create socially conscious theatre pieces including Push Factor, an exploration of bullying, and My Mind's Prisoner, an investigation into the experience of mental illness and its discourse. Andrea received her Bachelors of Arts in Drama and Archeology from SUNY Potsdam. While at Naropa University, she hopes to use practice as research to explore inter-subjective communication and performativity of text in Roy Hart work.
Molly Kampf: An Alexander Technique and movement instructor, choreographer and performer. She has taught in numerous institutions including Central Michigan University, Saginaw Valley State University and Interlochen Fine Arts Camp. Previously she performed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. While there, she graduated from the Alexander Alliance and received a BFA in modern dance from Temple University. Molly is currently at Naropa University in the MFA program for Contemporary Performance in Boulder, Colorado.
Hrefna Lind: Comes from Iceland. She holds BA from University of Iceland in Literature/Theater and Drama Education. She has been teaching improvisation, leading art groups, directing and holding experimental theater workshops and researches based of Grotowski technique. In 2011, she moved to New York and attended dance classes in Contact improvisation at Movement Research. She attended a three week intensive workshop at Double Edge Theater and was truly inspired by the work.
Jamie McKittrick: A Philadelphia based theatre artist who's developed, choreographed, and performed in Swim Pony Performing Arts' SURVIVE! and Lady M. For Johnny Showcase and the Lefty Lucy Players, she choreographed and performed as one of the "6 Lady Dancers" for the 2009 Philly Fringe Festival hit Purr, Pull, Reign. Regionally, she's performed in La Cage Aux Folles, Alice and Wonderland, High Society, and The Robber Bridegroom. She's toured nationally and collaborated internationally with symphony orchestras through Enchantment Theatre Company's productions of Scheherazade, Cinderella, and The Velveteen Rabbit. Also, she taught as an artist in residence for the Roberto Clemente School and for Muhlenberg College's Performing Arts.
Jenni Messner: Has landed in Boulder by way of Cleveland, Ohio, where she most recently worked with Cleveland Public Theatre and Theater Ninjas. Just prior, she received her BA in both Theatre and Psychology at Denison University, and spent a semester in Dublin, Ireland at the Gaiety School of Acting, the National Theatre School of Ireland. Favorite performances include clowning with the Canniballoon Brigade, and devising work with Dension's Women's Performance Group.
Nate Speare: A performing artist based in New York. Theatrical interests include character work, solo/ensemble work, and body/voice pedagogy. Nate acted in regional theaters in MA and off-off Broadway productions in New York. He studied at The Mime School in Amsterdam and as an artist-in-residence with Pantheatre (with the Roy Hart Centre) in France. He presented a paper called "The Present Actor" to the Mid-America Theatre Conference, and wrote theatre reviews for Chicago publications NewCity and The Reader. While working in New York, he performed his solo "We Died of Thirst," which won the Talk of the Town award at the New England Fringe Festival.
Ye Taik: A New York and Colorado based performing artist and also an independent curator of multidisciplinary art and media projects. Most recently, he was an artist-in-resident at Flux Factory as a New York Community Trust Fellow and is presently artistic director of Ye Taik and the BlackSheep performing art organization. In 2010 he was a selected artist for The Field Organization and is showcasing at Lower Manhattan Cultural Council and Harlem Art Alliance, New York. His work is in the permanent collection of the Library of Congress under the Asian American archive. He is a modest American of the Burmese diaspora.
Ana Cantorán Viramontes: Born and raised in Mexico, Ana has a BFA in Dramatic Arts obtained in Puebla Mexico, she is a founder member of Producciones Espintla Teatro, theater company and performance laboratory interested in research and explore Mexican Folklore as well Mexican ancient and modern Culture and history. She is very proud of being a member of the Theater of the Opresed community in Mexico where she was working as a performer at Teatro Kiosko company in a preventive campaign against the human trafficking.
Jacque Daniel Morrow: Has been practicing theatre for about 10 years or so. His favorite credits include "Dead Man Walking", "Good", "The Laramie Project", and "Equus" amongst others. He is veteran of over 50 stage productions and has been trained in or dabbled in just about everything except witchcraft. He'd like to thank his parents, and family, his ex-girlfriends, Big Bird and the Keebler Elves for everything! He loves that he is finally back in Boulder after a 2 1/2 year absence. You stay classy Boulder!
MFA Class of 2015
Allison Caw: Allison Caw has spent the last 7 years in Philadelphia as an actor, singer, dancer, creator and teacher but is originally from Columbus, Ohio. She received her BFA in Musical Theater at The University of the Arts and attended Headlong Performance Institute. She co-founded Bright Light Theater Company and constructed/performed in several pieces that merged traditional story telling and stylized movement in site-specific locations including the woods, a loading dock and an elevator. Allison also worked with various companies in the area including Center City Opera Theater, Plays & Players and New Paradise Laboratories. As a teacher she got her start at the Please Touch Museum for children, where she acted as the Dance/Movement Specialist. Currently, Allison is a Teacher Trainee in Williamson Technique of which she is fortunate enough to learn from the founder, Loyd Williamson.
Victoria Gonzalez: Victoria Gonzalez received her BA in Philosophy in 2013 from Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah where she also had the opportunity to study visual and performing arts. Drawn to stories as a constant reader in her grade school years, performance fascinates her as an intersection of art forms. Among her favorite pieces to date was taking part in the creation and 2 day performance of Speaking Your Peace/Piece, a verbatim play co-authored and produced by a cohort of students and professors in a one month class at Westminster in 2012 to raise awareness of domestic abuse in Salt Lake City. She has also taken part in group instillation pieces, painted a mural or two, written a couple shorts, and paints or draws from time to time be it physically or digitally. She believes in possibilities and the potential for true freedom within natural laws, and would like for all humans to consider themselves becomings rather than beings.
Stephen Geering: A native of Ohio, Stephen received his BA from Denison University in 2009. He worked as an acting intern at the Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati during their 09-10 season. Recently, he attended Miami University working towards his MA in theatre. It was his time there that sparked a professional interest in Performance Studies, as well as electronic, multimedia, and hybridized theatre forms. His time spent at Miami teaching a Theatre Appreciation course has also kindled an interest in pedagogy, including Aesthetic Education. While attending Naropa, he is concurrently finishing his thesis on the intersection of electronic gaming and theatre. He presented Bodhisattva at 1839 Wylie Avenue: August Wilson and Buddhism at Miami's 2013 MEGAA symposium. He has performed multiple times at the Cincinnati Fringe Festival Some favorite past performances include Ahn-Sam-Bul (Ensemble), Trust, and The Doppleganger Cometh and Overtaketh. Stephen hopes that his time at Naropa will help him grow, not only as an artist, but as a scholar as well. Stephen is a member of American Mensa.
Bobbi Kaye Kupfner: A Montana based Performing Artist and Musician. She has a BA in Communications: Theatre from Montana State University-Billings. In Montana she taught competitive Speech, Drama, and Debate at a high school level and was involved with the local theatres, Venture Theatre and Billings Studio Theatre. Some of her favorite acting credits are: Macabre Steampunk Sweeney Todd, Sunset Boulevard, That Face, Is He Dead?, The Vagina Monologues, Crimes of the Heart, and HAIR. As a Director: The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), The 39 Steps, and Venture Theatre's Annual 24-hour Wet Ink Festival. She was also an active member of the Venture Theatre Improv Troupe. Bobbi Kaye has found herself in Boulder, CO at Naropa University to pursue her MFA, it is providing the steps she hopes will lead to becoming an active traveling performer and someday college professor.
Katie Jones: Katie Jones obtained her B.A. in Performing Arts from Clemson University in South Carolina. She then spent a year interning at the Asolo Theatre in Sarasota, FL, in their Education Department. Subsequently, she moved to Chicago, where she spent the next eight years as a director, performer, puppeteer, and teacher. Katie worked with many companies during that time, including Northlight Theatre, American Theatre Company, Citadel Theatre, Von Orthal Puppets, Theatre Zarko, Steppenwolf's Cross-Town Teen Ensemble and the International Center for Women Playwrights. Katie is a founding member of Directors Lab Chicago. In 2008, she founded Wishbone Theatre Collective with other Clemson alumni. They created many original works, and most recently performed their play, SPANDEX, at the International Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Kate Moore: A product of the Midwest, she comes to Boulder on an artistic quest. Kate received her BFA in acting from Ball State University where she developed an affinity for movement and experimental theater. Most recent training includes Suzuki and slow tempo with Pacific Performance Project East and Peter Kyle. Additionally, she had the pleasure of spending a summer at the Tshwane University of Technology in Pretoria, South Africa studying theater and dance. Favorite performances include the Midwest premiere of Alice Austen's The Destruction of Curves and the premiere of The Daughters of Trinity created by Professor Jennifer Blackmer and students of the BSU/Virginia Ball center.
Gabrielle Orcha: Moving to Colorado and pursuing an MFA in Theatre: Contemporary Performance has made Gabrielle the happiest she's ever been in her entire life. A recent Boston transplant, Gabrielle, while studying with Anne Waldman during Naropa's legendary summer intensive, writes in her poetry manuscript: "I have traded the ocean for the mountains, salt for salt, skyscrapers for sky. It's as if another self were birthed from this earth..." Credits include choreographing the nine month national tour of the musical adaption Call of the Wild (book and lyrics by her mentor, the late Jon Lipsky); receiving runner-up for the KCACTF National Student Playwriting Award for her play Song of Miriam, which she wrote, choreographed, directed, and produced; choreographing for regional theatre (Fiddler on the Roof, Jacques Brel—Olney Theatre, MD) and off-Broadway (The Dybbuk—Marvel Rep); and performing her ever-evolving solo show, The Gabrielle Orcha Tour de Force Dance Theatre Extravaganza. Prior to the Big Move, she helmed, for the past ten years, her dance company, Orcha Dance Theatre, which cross-navigates "opera"— Shulamis (Harvard University), Cunning Little Vixen (Boston Opera Collaborative); "concert dance"—most notably Dancing Through The Torah, an epic undertaking in which she choreographed and her dancers performed a one to three minute dance piece for each weekly Torah portion and major Jewish holiday; and lastly "straight plays"— she choreographed the American premier of Once Upon A Time by Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel. A two-time alumna of the School at Jacob's Pillow and a 2006 graduate of Boston University with a B.F.A in Theatre and Dance, Gabrielle is delighted to be here doing what she loves: exploring, unearthing, risking, breathing, being, becoming. To the journey! And the mountains!
Ben Waugh: Recently received his BA in Theatre at Kansas Wesleyan University, where he was the recipient of the "Outstanding Theatre Performer of the Year" Award in 2013. Ben also has a past as an athlete, mainly as a runner and cheerleader, with misguided stints in football and wrestling as well. While at KWU, Ben was a member of the competitive cheer team. He has been in productions ranging from "Crimes of the Heart" to "The Odyssey." He recently produced his own production dealing with the uniquely universal aspects of love, entitled "<3"
Stephanie Wilbert: Received a B.A. in Theatre Arts from Cleveland State University where she primarily studied Voice and Movement. Since 2012, she has been working with Talespinner Children's Theatre in Cleveland, Ohio and has performed in the inaugural production of The Tale of the Name of the Tree, as well as coordinating movement/percussion for the original adaptations of Magic Flute and The Emperor's Ears. She has also spent the past year touring Ohio as an actor/teacher for The Illusion Factory. With an interest in creating performance pieces that are based on the fusion of mythological and futuristic elements, she has performed with her existentialist theatre group; A World Without Windows at both the Ingenuity Festival 2012 and Cleveland Public Theatre's Pandemonium 2011: Amuse Me. She is an Equity Membership Candidate and member of Capoeira Brasil Cleveland.