Alumni Spotlight

A Community of Artists and Scholars

When you enroll in the M.A. in Theatre program at Villanova, you not only become a part of our academic program, but you become a part of our creative community, which extends far beyond Villanova's campus.

Villanova Theatre alumni continue to work together long after they graduate. Your colleagues from graduate school often become your directors, producers, actors, teachers, writers and collaborators in the "real world." The connections you make in the classroom and on the stage will stay with you throughout your career.

Our Villanova Theatre Alumni make us proud every day.

If you have any information to add to this list, please email us!

 

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David Rabe

David Rabe ('68) is an American playwright and screenwriter. He won the Tony Award for Best Play in 1972 (Sticks and Bones) and also received Tony award nominations for Best Play in 1974 (In the boom boom room), 1977 (Streamers) and 1985 (Hurlyburly).

 

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Kim Fairbanks

Kim Fairbanks ('11) Actress, voice-over artist, solo performer. Recent credits include Delaware Theater Company (Wanda/Crowns - Best Supporting Actress Barrymore Nomination), Plays & Players Theater (Claire &Miriam/The Eros Trilogy); Villanova Theatre (Lady Bountiful/The Beaux Stratagem, Bud & Pan/Bat Boy & Medea/Medea); The Mint Theatre-Off Broadway (Hagar/10 Imaginings of Sarah & Hagar); and InterAct Theatre Company (Denise Reeves/The Rant). In addition to her theater credits Kimberly can be seen and heard in numerous commercials, voice-overs, and independent films. Most notable on camera credits include the role of Gail in It’s a Miracle (PAX TV); Dr. Houseman inThe Fall Before Paradise (Eden Productions) and the feature film What Happens Next (starring Wendie Malick & John Lindstrom). Kimberly is the 2011 KCACTF Irene Ryan National Finalist and the recipient of the National Partners Theatre Classical Acting Award.

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Michael Hollinger

Michael Hollinger ('89) Professor of Theatre at Villanova University. Award-winning American playwright. Author of Opus, Tooth and Claw, Red Herring, Tiny Island, Incorruptible, An Empty Plate in the Cafe du Grand Boeuf, Ghost-Writer (Best New Play Barrymore, 2011).  A past recipient of a Roger L. Stevens Award for New American Plays and an alumnus of New Dramatists, Hollinger's recent translation and adaptation of Cyrano debuted at The Folger and The Arden Theatre. Hollinger has written three short films for PBS and co-authored the feature-length Philadelphia DiaryHis awards include the Roger L. Stevens Award from the Fund for New American Plays, a Barrymore Award for Outstanding New Play, the F. Otto Haas Award for an Emerging Theatre Artist, a Mid-Atlantic Emmy Award, a commission from The Ensemble Studio Theatre/Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Science and Technology Project, and fellowships from the Independence Foundation, Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation, and Pennsylvania Council on the Arts.

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Jessica Bedford

Jessica Bedford ('10) Freelance Theatre Artist. Playwright, director, dramaturg, actor, solo performance artist. Recently seen as Mollie in The Mousetrap (The McCarter Theatre) and Vera in And Then There Were None (Walnut Street Theatre). Jessica was the Associate Artistic Director at Montgomery Theatre from 2010 to 2015 where she directed God of Carnage. She is an adjunct professor at DeSales University. 

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Janus Stefanowicz

Janus Stefanowicz ('81) Villanova Theatre's resident costume designer and costume shop manager. She has designed costumes for the Arden Theatre Company, Delaware Theatre Company, people's Light & Theatre Company, Philadelphia Theatre Company, The Wilma Theater, and Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival.  Janus has received sixteen Barrymore Award nominations for Outstanding Costume Design for Villanova Theatre's The Tempest, Parade, Chicago, Children of Eden, Into the Woods, Candide, and Evita; Philadelphia Theatre Company's Intimate Apparel (2006 Barrymore Award winner); and The Wilma Theater's ArcadiaOn The Razzle (1998 Barrymore Award winner), The invention of Love, Magic Fire, Big Love (2003 Barrymore Award winner), Galileoand Age of Arousal.

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Leslie Lee

Leslie Lee ('70) American playwright, Executive Director of the Negro Ensemble Company, and a founding artist of La MaMa ETC. His plays have been produced both on and off Broadway, and he has also written for film and television. Plays: Black EaglesThe First Breeze of Summer (Obie, Outer Critics Circle Award, Tony nomination), Elegy to a Down QueenColored People's TimeThe War PartyBetween Now and Then. Screenplays: The First Breeze of SummerAlmos' a ManGo Tell It on the Mountain (American Playhouse), Summer Father. Awards: NEA grant in playwriting, Rockefeller Foundation Playwriting Grant, Shubert Foundation Playwriting Grant, New York State Council on the Arts grant for playwriting, and playwriting fellow at the O'Neill Playwrights Conference. He passed away in 2014 at the age of 83.

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James J. Christy

James J. Christy ('65) served as a professor and director with Villanova Theatre for 36 years, acting as chairperson of the department for 13 years. He has received two Barrymore Awards and seven nominations for Best Director and earned the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2005 Barrymore Awards ceremony.

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Carla Belver

Carla Belver ('76) critically-acclaimed actress recently seen as Violet Weston in August: Osage County at The Arden Theatre Company and Dividing the Estate at People's Light and Theatre Company, with whom she has shared a long association. In 2014 she was in Pittsburgh at City Theatre featured as Erica Morini in The Morini Strad. Favorite roles include Linda in Death of A Salesman, and Kate in All My Sons, for which she was nominated for a Barrymore,The Faith Healer, Mornings at Seven,and The Heiress. She won the Barrymore Lifetime Achievement Award in 2014.

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Bruce Graham

Bruce Graham ('88) is an American playwright, screenwriter and professor. Plays include Burkie, Early One Evening at the Rainbow Bar & Grille, Minor Demons, Moon Over The Brewery, The Champagne Charlie Stakes, Belmont Avenue Social Club, Desperate Affection, Coyote on a Fence, According to Goldman, Dex and Julie Sittin' In a Tree, Full Fiured, and Loves to Dance, Something Intangible (Best New Play Barrymore, 2009) Any Given Monday (Best New Play Barrymore, 2010)and The Outgoing TideFeature film credits include Dunston Checks In, Anastasia, and Steal This Movie.  He is also the author (with co-writer & fellow Villanova alum Michele Volansky) of The Collaborative Playwright, a Practical Guide to Getting Your Play Written, which was recently published by Heinemann. Graham has received grants from the Pew Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation and was a recipient of the Princess Grace Foundation Statuette Award. He currently teaches playwriting and film courses at the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University.

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Kathryn Macmillan

Kathryn Macmillan ('01) is a Philadelphia-based theatre director who has earned a reputation for directing classical texts, contemporary plays and comedies of all kinds with freshness and clarity, tackling plays about big ideas and scientific concepts, and shaping great ensemble acting. She is currently at work on the development of a world premiere musical, as well as directing solo shows for three regional companies. KC approaches her collaborations with good communication, dramaturgical precision, and joy.

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Maureen Torsney Weir

Maureen Torsney Weir ('97) critically-acclaimed actress. Recent appearances include Sunday in the Park with George, The History BoysCaroline or ChangeA Prayer for Owen Meany, and The Baker's Wife (Arden Theatre). Most recent role: Lizzie inCherry Bomb (1812). Played The Lady in Alan Bennett's Lady in the Van at Mum Puppettheare. Other Philly theatres: Walnut Street, InterAct, People's Light, Act II, Theatre Exile. Working in New York for many years noted for Grace in Faith Healer, and Ouisa in Six Degrees of Separation among many others. Film includes featured roles in In Her Shoes directed by Curtis Hanson, and the upcoming Lebanon and Buddy GilbertIndividual Barrymore winner Best Supporting Actress - Angels in America, and Ensemble - Equus.

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Dana Amendola

Dana Amendola ('84) Vice President of Operations, Disney Theatrical Group.

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Carrie Chapter

Carrie Chapter ('08) Literary Manager and Dramaturg, Philadelphia Theatre Company. In addition to Philadelphia Theatre Company, her credits include dramaturgical work at the PlayPenn New Play Conference, Inis Nua Theatre Company, Mauckingbird Theatre Company, Primary Stages, Playwrights Horizons, and GeVa Theatre Center. As a freelancer, Carrie proudly acted as an Artistic Consultant for Temple University’s que[e]ry project, in which student writers and performers created stories about the experiences of LGBT youth; also, she provided workshop dramaturgy for Broadway’s The Book of Mormon. In the summer months, Carrie leaves Philly for Connecticut, where she acts as a lead dramaturg for the National Music Theater Center at the O’Neill Center.

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Liz Walsh

Liz Walsh ('89) is the Associate Vice President of Communication at Villanova University. Liz worked in marketing for the following non-profit organizations: Adventure Aquarium, The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, and The Wilma Theater.

Ann K. Holmes

Anne K. Holmes ('03) is the Education Director for the Wilma Theatre

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Kimberly Reilly

Kimberly Reilly ('09) Director of Marketing & PR, Villanova Theatre. Previous non-profit management, development, and production experience: Act II Playhouse, Theatre Horizon, and The Devon Theater. In 2010, Kimberly was honored alongside Matt Silva ('09) with a nomination for "Best Direction of a Musical" by the Barrymore Awards for Excellence in Theatre (for the duo's re-imagined production of Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat). The production garnered five nominations (Best Ensemble, Best Musical Direction, Best Choreography & Best Lead Actress). Kimberly was also awarded the Engage 2020 Leadership Program scholarship, allowing her to attend the National Arts Marketing Project Conference in San Jose, CA (2010). Kimberly is also an adjunct professor at Villanova University for both the Masters of Public Administration Program and the Honors Program.

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Bill D'Agostino

Bill D'Agostino () is the Communications and Education Director of Act II Playhouse. is a playwright, educator, dramaturg, and arts administrator. Bill's plays for kids include the Murray the Elf series andSleeping Handsome at Act II; Robin HoodFairy Tale High Schoolat Montgomery Theater; and Making Gnocchi with Grandma, which was a semifinalist in the Write Now competition. Bill received his MA in theatre from Villanova University and his undergraduate degree in theatre from Brown University. Bill is a member of the Foundry, the Dramatists Guild, and Theatre for Young Audiences USA. He lives in Bryn Mawr with his wife Carrie and his daughter Celia.

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Jacqueline Christy

Jacqueline Christy ('91) is the founder and Executive Director of Access Theatre in NYC.

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Karen Dilossi

Karen Dilossi ('00) Director, Art in Sacred Places. Karen has worked professionally in theatre since 2000, both onstage and off, serving as actress, stage manager, director, producer, administrator, and manager. Her directing credits include Jump/Cut, Twelfth Night, Tartuffe, and Pounding Nails. She is the co-Artistic Director of Madhouse Theater Company, and serves on the Board of Directors for Flashpoint Theatre Company; she is also a panelist for the Philadelphia Cultural Fund. As the Director of Programs & Services for the Theatre Alliance of Greater Philadelphia for over eight years, her most prominent responsibility was in producing the Barrymore Awards many times and directing them herself twice. Karen has taught acting at West Chester University and served as a stage management consultant for Villanova Theatre. As the first Director of Arts in Sacred Places, she is creating a clear path for Partners to follow whenever pairing together a congregation with a performing arts institution. She is working towards creating a training model and manual of instruction on long-term leases for arts organizations to thrive within the walls of congregations.

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Bud Martin

Bud Martin ('74) Executive Director, Delaware Theatre Company. Broadway/West End ProducerLa Bête, Time Stands Still, Legally Blonde, Burn the Floor.  Formerly Producing Artistic Director of Act II Playhouse, where he directed Married Alive, Magnetic North, On Golden Pond, Respect: A Musical Journey of Women, The Story of My Life (Barrymore Award), Art (Barrymore nomination), the recent co-production with DTC, Time Stands Still, and My Fair Lady. He also directed the national tour of Respect as well as Bruce Graham's Any Given Monday Off-Broadway at 59E59 Theaters.

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Callie Hisek

Callie Hisek ('08) is the Box Office Manager and Publicity Specialist at W. M. Lee Center for Fine Arts at the University of South Dakota, where she also received her MFA in Directing and now teaches. She is also a director, a photographer, a stage manager, and an actor.

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Dr. Michelle Volansky

Michele Volansky ('92)  Associate Professor of Drama at Washington College. In addition to her role as the Conference Dramaturg and Associate Artist for the annual PlayPenn New Play Development Conference, she has worked at the Atlantic Theatre Company, the Arden Theater, Azuka Theatre Collective, 1812 Productions, Theatre Exile/Act 2 Playhouse, Victory Gardens, and Next Theatre. Volansky also served on the artistic staffs at Actors Theatre of Louisville (1992-95), Steppenwolf Theatre Company (1995-2000) and Philadelphia Theatre Company (2000-2004). In her career, she has worked on over 150 new and established plays, including the Broadway productions of Buried Child and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest as well as plays that have been produced in theaters across the United States and Europe. She is the 1999 inaugural recipient of the Elliot Hayes Award for Dramaturgy and is a past President of the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas. Her book on playwriting and collaboration, co-written with Bruce Graham and entitled The Collaborative Playwright, was published by Heinemann Press in March 2007. She holds a BA in English from Washington College, an MA from Villanova and a PhD from the University of Hull; her dissertation explored the politics and advocacy of the critics Kenneth Tynan and Frank Rich.

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Steve Smith

Steve Smith ('99) Stephen Smith is Assistant Professor of Drama at Delaware County Community College and the only full-time faculty member in the Drama department.  He has an M.A. in Theatre from Villanova University and an M.F.A. in Acting from The University of Delaware’s Professional Theatre Training Program.  He teaches all of the courses offered in Drama and directs one main stage production each semester at the College.  He is also a professional actor and director in Philadelphia and has performed in regional theatres throughout the country.  A member of Actors’ Equity, in 2005 he received two Philadelphia Barrymore Awards for Best Ensemble and Best Choreography for his direction of Tuesday at Amaryllis Theatre Company in Philadelphia.

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Dr. Kristi Good

Kristi Good ('07) received her PhD in Theatre and Performance Studies from the University of Pittsburgh and her MA in Theatre with an emphasis in Dramaturgy at Villanova University. She served as a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Pittsburgh and also taught courses in Script Analysis and Dramaturgy at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Drama and Theatre History at Point Park University’s Conservatory of Performing Arts.

She has an active research agenda with interests that include Contemporary Irish Theatre, Theatre of Trauma, Theatre Pedagogy, and the intersection of Theatre Arts and the Cognitive Sciences. She regularly presents papers at the Association for Theatre in Higher Education and the American Conference for Irish Studies. Her publications include “Marilyn Monroe: Soldier in Greasepaint” (Theatre History Studies) and “Testimony for the Forgotten: Sebastian Barry’s The Pride of Parnell Street as Celtic Tiger Critique” (Etudes).  She is actively involved in the Playwriting Symposium at the Mid-America Theatre Conference, where she serves as a co-chair and dramaturg for their annual new works festival.

Dr. Good teaches Understanding Theatre, Shakespeare on Stage, Theatre History, Modern Drama, and Theatre & Culture in the Department of Theatre Arts.

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Dr. Rose Malague

Rose Malague ('94) Director of Theatre Arts Program, University of Pennsylvania. Rose earned her PhD from City University of New York. A professional actor and member of Actors' Equity Association, she studied at Circle-in-the-Square Theatre School in New York, and received her master's degree from Villanova University. She teaches courses in acting, directing and theatre theory; her research interests include acting theory, actor training and feminist theatre. She frequently supervises senior acting and directing theses, and directs for the Theatre Arts Program

 

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Dr. Valerie Joyce

Valerie Joyce ('95) holds a PhD in Theatre History and Performance Studies from the University of Maryland and an MA from our program. She is an author, an educator, a playwright, a director, and a scholar and work for Villanova University as an Associate Professor.

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Jessica Hinds-Bond

Jessica Hinds-Bond ('09) is currently working on her PhD in post-Soviet Russian Drama at Northwestern.

Calling all alumni! We would also be happy to publicize your recent projects and accomplishments. Send news items to kimberly.reilly@villanova.edu.

Department of Theatre and Studio Art
800 E. Lancaster Ave.
St. Augustine Center Room 205
Villanova, PA 19085
610-519-4760