Grant Wenaus, a leading collaborative pianist, educator, and conductor, serves as Assistant Professor of Music at the Steinhardt School at New York University. Dr. Wenaus is also Principal Coach and Assistant Conductor at the famed Glimmerglass Festival, where he has prepared productions such as Kiss Me Kate, The Music Man (with Elizabeth Futral and Dwayne Croft) and Camelot (starring Nathan Gunn and David Pittsinger). At Glimmerglass he has also performed several recitals with leading singers such as Anthony Roth Costanza, Ryan McKinney, Peter Volpe, Jack Noseworthy and members of Young American Artist program.
Dr. Wenaus has been on staff as a vocal coach and collaborative pianist for the Florence Voice Seminar, a summer opera program in Italy, alongside Benita Valente and Sally Wolf, and the UpNorth Vocal Institute in Michigan. He has conducted NYU productions including The Magic Flute, L'enfant et les sortilèges, Dido and Aeneas, Orpheus in the Underworld, The Merry Widow, Ragtime, City of Angelsand The Light in the Piazza. Appointed as the Director of Collaborative Piano Program in 2010, several of his collaborative students have gone on to careers as répétiteurs and conductors in opera houses around the county, or on Broadway. Equally comfortable with classical and musical theatre repertoire, Dr. Wenaus was on faculty as a conductor for the University of Michigan Musical Theatre Program for three years (Of Thee I Sing, A Little Night Music and Anything Goes).
In New York, Dr. Wenaus is the primary pianist for the New Voices Collective, a concert series for Broadway composers and performers at Symphony Space, where he works with such luminaries as John Kander, Jason Robert Brown, Andrew Lippa, Victoria Clark, Kate Baldwin, Rebecca Luker, Lauren Kennedy and Brian D'Arcy James. A highlight of his performing career was playing alongside Martin Katz at Carnegie Hall with such singers as Sylvia McNair and Sanford Sylvan in a tribute to Isaac Stern. He also worked for two summers as an opera repetiteur for Seiji Ozawa at the Tanglewood Music Festival. Dr. Wenaus is a former student of Martin Katz, Menahem Pressler and William Moore.
Ivy Walz, DMA is Assistant Professor of Voice at Ithaca College. She is dedicated to helping students develop a healthy singing technique that bridges across musical genre. In voice lessons Dr. Walz brings joyful dedication to working with each student individually to help them develop the skills for singing success. These skills may be divided into four larger categories: the development of good practicing habits, intellectual and musical thinking, proper care for vocal health and well being, and readiness for the musical world. Vocal technique is fundamental to her teaching, and it is her goal to provide her students with the essential skills that lead to vocal freedom and artistic expression.
An active performer, she has performed with Cincinnati Opera, Syracuse Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, The Spoleto Festival, Tri-Cities Opera and at other regional venues. Favorite main stage roles include Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, Nicklause in Les Contes D'Hoffmann and Dido in Dido and Aeneas. She performs frequently with regional orchestras as a mezzo soprano soloist. Recent highlights include Prokifiev's Alexander Nevsky, Handel's Messiah, Mozart's Mass in C minor and Bach's Johannes Passion.
She is a graduate of the College Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati, DMA (2014) and Ithaca College, MM (2002) and BM in vocal performance and music education (1998).
Melissa Crespo is a New York-based director of theater, opera, film and television. She is most passionate about collaborating with playwrights and devising new work.
She is most known for ¡Figaro! (90210) which had it's world premiere at LA Opera and had it's NY premiere at The Duke on 42nd Street. Other operas include the undiscovered masterpiece Voodoo, a Harlem Renaissance opera by H. Lawrence Freeman that "soared" according to The Guardian. Produced by Morningside Opera, Harlem Opera Theater and the Harlem Chamber Players, the NY Times wrote that "the revival offers a glimpse of a nearly forgotten chapter of African-American operatic achievement."
Melissa also directed the most recent incarnation of Tar Baby written and performed by Desiree Burch with Dan Kitrosser. Hailed as one of Huffington Post's 'Favorite Female Comedians," Tar Baby was awarded the prestigious Scotsman Fringe First at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and has since had productions in London, New Zealand and Finland.
Melissa has served as the Allen Lee Hughes Directing Fellow at Arena Stage, Van Lier Directing Fellow at Second Stage Theatre and is a 2014 Drama League Fellow where she directed the world premiere of Maggie-Kate Coleman's The Map of Lost Things while in residence at the Hangar Theatre. She directed for the 2015 ABC Talent Showcase.
Currently, she is a Usual Suspect at New York Theatre Workshop and is a 2016-2018 Lab member of WP Theater (formerly The Women's Project). Melissa received her MFA in Directing from The New School for Drama.
Mariah Sage is a professional actor and acting coach in New Haven with twenty years of experience in performance. Mariah has taught acting and coached actors and presenters at the college level for years, including: Brown University, NYU/Tisch, and Hartford Stage. She served as Director of the Theatre Program at Fairfield University, where she assisted professional guests directors on casting.
Mariah was accepted into the most competitive actor training programs in the country. She earned her BFA in Drama from NYU/Tisch School of the Arts and her MFA in Acting from Brown University/Trinity Rep.
Mariah is a member of Actors’ Equity Association, the union representing professional actors and stage managers in the United States. She has performed in theatres across the country and in Europe including: The Public Theater, The Cleveland Playhouse, The Trinity Rep, Imago, and The Apollo in Dusseldorf, Germany. She also acts in independent film. In 2007, Mariah Co-Founded the professional theatre company, Theatre 4, in New Haven. With Theatre 4 she has produced and performed in numerous new plays at such theatres at The Long Wharf Theatre and the NYC International Fringe Theatre Festival. Theatre 4’s work was recently recognized in TIME Magazine. Mariah lives in New Haven, CT with her husband and their young son.
Jeff Theiss is an active musical director, conductor, coach, and pianist in New York, as well as in regional theaters across the country. In the Fall of 2011, Jeff made his Broadway debut for Lysistrata Jones. He is currently the musical director and arranger for the up-and-coming Faustus: A New Musical. This summer, Jeff returns to the Merry-Go-Round playhouse for his 5th season, this time as Musical Director.
Other regional musical direction credits include: Altar Boyz (MGR); Legally Blonde (MGR); CATS (MGR); The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Florida Studio Theater); I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change (Florida Studio Theater); Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Miracle Theater). He was also music director for Broadway Memories, a cabaret of favorite songs of two veteran Broadway performers, Brad Little (Phantom Of The Opera, Jekyll and Hyde) and Barbara McCulloh (The King and I) at the Granbury Opera House in Dallas.
Jeff is passionate about teaching, and particularly enjoys the joys and challenges of collegiate theater. He began his career in musical direction at Baylor University while he was a sophomore music major and continued to work for the Baylor Drama Department for two years after graduation. He presents frequent classes in song interpretation and audition technique at Ithaca College and Vincennes University.
Currently, Jeff is on facutly at AMDA (NYC) as a pianist and assistant musical director, and also at CAP21, where he team teaches Musical Theater Scene Study. Jeff received his Bachelors in Music Education in Voice from Baylor University and his Masters in Music in Conducting from Ithaca College.
Dr. Rachelle Fleming (D.M.A. University of Miami, M.A. Eastman School of Music, B.A. SUNY Fredonia) is nationally recognized in the training and vocal health of the contemporary vocal artist. Dr. Fleming holds a doctorate in Vocal Pedagogy and Performance from the University of Miami, a research Masters in Music Education from Eastman School of Music, a Bachelors of Music in Voice Performance, and pedagogical coursework in two of the leading commercial vocal music training programs. Faculty positions held include the Actors Studio MFA Program and Catholic University of America. Additional teaching includes the national tour of Billy Elliot, the University of Miami, Eastman School of Music's Community Division, and privately in New York City and Washington, DC. Dr. Fleming's research on popular music voice curricula and collegiate music theater training programs has resulted in invitations to speak at the Specialty Training in Vocal Health Symposium sponsored by the National Center for Voice and Speech, and to present research at a National Association of Teachers of Singing conference. Dr. Fleming is nationally in demand as a master class teaching artist. Her work is strongly supported by professional experience in arts management, stage direction, performance, television and recording.
A versatile performer and recording artist, Dr. Fleming's featured vocal on the Sony release My Secret Radio's "After The Love Has Gone," garnered praise by Jazz Weekly for a voice "as agonizingly penetrating as a Dear John letter." Dr. Fleming has collaborated with Cuban ensemble Tiempo Libre (Sony release); multiple Grammy-winning opera star Renée Fleming (Decca/Mercury release); and international jazz pianist and composer Fred Hersch. Recent musical theater appearances include an evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein with the Fairfax Symphony Orchestra; the role of Rose Arbuthnot in Enchanted April presented at Arena Stage; the role of Joanne in Sondheim's Company; a cabaret for the Festival of the Arts BOCA; and the New York premiere of Bill Smith's jazz opera, Space in the Heart, at Symphony Space. Her love of the American Songbook has led her to perform with world-class jazz pianist and award-winning educator Shelly Berg; at the Rochester International Jazz Festival; and with Florida Lakes Symphony Orchestra.
Sam Davis is a composer, conductor, pianist, and arranger. He is the musical director/conductor/arranger for the Broadway revival of Side Show at the St. James Theater. Other Broadway credits as arranger and/or conductor include An American in Paris, Big Fish, Scandalous, Curtains, and The Apple Tree. Other theater work includes music supervisor for Dreamgirls in Korea, Japan, South Africa, at the Apollo Theater, and on national tour. Credits at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. includes orchestrator for Jason Robert Brown's Trumpet of the Swan and dance music arranger for Susan Stroman's Little Dancer, plus the upcoming production of Gigi.Sam has written arrangements for such performers as Bette Midler, Kelli O'Hara, Chita Rivera, Kristin Chenoweth, Marin Mazzie, Jason Danieley, Debbie Gravitte, and Patrick Wilson, and his orchestrations have been performed by the Philadelphia Pos, the Boston Pops, the San Francisco Symphony, the Chicago Symphony, the New York Pops, and the National Symphony, among others.
As composer: Red Eye of Love (Amas Music Theater), Bunnicula (Daryl Roth Theater), Love and Real Estate (59 East 59), The Scottish Musical (Penn State New Musicals Festival.) Love on a Summer Afternoon: The Songs of Sam Davis is an album of his work available on the PS Clasiscs label. The original cast album of Bunnicula is available on the Yellow Sound Label. Sam is also the composer of the title song for Rebecca Luker's Greenwich Time, and two of his songs cowritten with Georgia Stitt appear on her debut CD This Ordinary Thursday. Other recording work for PS Clasiscs includes Kitty's Kisses, Sweet Little Devil, When the Wind Blows South, Warm Spring Night, and Dream True. He is a founding member of the New Voices Collective at Symphony Space. He is also a winner of the Jonathan Larson Award and of an Emerging Artist Award from the University of Michigan School of Music, of which he is a 1998 graduate.
Arielle Jacobs (NYC Presenter) starred on Broadway as Nina Rosario in the four-time Tony & Grammy award winning Broadway musical In The Heights, opposite composer/creator Lin-Manuel Miranda. Off-Broadway, she has starred in two world-premiere plays by Pulitzer-winning playwright and director Nilo Cruz. Jacobs was seen in the original National Touring companies of In the Heights”(Nina) and Disney's High School Musical (Gabriella), and in Shakespeare Theatre Company's production of Two Gentlemen of Verona: a Rock Opera”(Julia).
Other credits include Broadway workshops of Carmen and Nightingale (both directed by Tony Nominee Moises Kaufman), MASK (with Tony-winning director Richard Maltby, Jr.), Head Over Heels (with Drama Desk winning director Ed Iskandar), and It Shoulda Been You (with director David Hyde Pierce). TV/Film credits include Taxi Brooklyn on NBC, Commander in Chief; Dance War; Water Lilies; and Disney’s 365.
Arielle has sung alongside legendary great artists such as Teena Marie, Chaka Khan, Stephen Schwartz, Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, Damien Sneed, and has also performed onstage in many of America's greatest concert halls (including Lincoln Center in NYC, The Kennedy Center in Washington DC, Symphony Hall in Boston, Yale Hall, the Saenger Theater in New Orleans, Kauffman Center, and many more).
Arielle founded The Girls Camaraderie Project, an organization that aims to build camaraderie and community, instead of competition, among middle-school girls.
Robert Frost, a graduate of Southwestern University, currently serves as the Resident Musical Director for the National Musical Theater Institute at the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center. Robert also teaches private voice at NYU’s New Studio on Broadway.
Select MD credits include We Live In Cairo and Cardboard Piano (O’Neill Theater Center); James Joyce is Dead… (Connecticut College); Jonah and the Whale: A New Musical (7th House/Guthrie Theater) and Little Shop of Horrors (7th House); Guys and Dolls (TexArts); and project élan (Arkansas Rep), which he also co-wrote.
Robert also serves as one-half of Frosty Bob and J's Summer Camp, a queer performance partnership with playwright/performer Justin Caron. Together, they have created Utopiacopia (Director) and Stay Where You F***ing Are: A Tribute to Elaine Stritch (Musical Director/Co-Writer). FBJ's Summer Camp was recently named "Best Performance Art 2014" by l'étoile magazine.
Terence Goff, tenor, has been teaching a large studio of young singers since 1995. He has a BA in music from Cornell University, MM in vocal performance from New England Conservatory and completed doctoral coursework at the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music. He has studied with Barbara Honn, and worked as her teaching assistant in New York City. He also has studied with Tom Baresel, Irene Gebrud, Susan Clickner, Judith Kellock and Leo Lozito. He specializes in the development of young and emerging singers and his students have been admitted as young artists at Merola Opera Program, Opera Theater of St. Louis, The Glimmerglass Festival, Wolf Trap, Palm Beach Opera, Songfest, Lucca Opera Festival, Oberlin in Italy and others. Terence’s students have been accepted at The Juilliard School, University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music, Indiana University School of Music, Manhattan School of Music, New England Conservatory, Mannes College, Eastman School of Music, Rice University, Ithaca College and others. He currently has thriving studios in New York City, Long Island, and online where he teaches students throughout the US and in Asia using Skype.