Eric Altheide, Assistant Professor of Theatre, is a professional actor who has worked on stage in New York and across the country. Some of his theatre credits include: Guildenstern in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead at Westport Playhouse, Davey in the World Premiere of Fixed at the Hangar Theatre, Hal in the regional premiere of Proof at the Georgestreet Playhouse, Jack in Moonchild at FringeNYC 2004 and the Nazi Guard in Summit Conference Off-Broadway. His television and film credits include All MY Children and The Producers: The Movie Musical.
His directing credits include Of Mice and Men with USI Theatre and The 39 Steps and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum with New Harmony Theatre.
He has studied with some of the most renowned theatre artists and directors in the country including Ron Van Lieu, Zelda Fichandler, Liviu Ciulei, and Ken Washington.
Eric is a member of Actors Equity Association and the Screen Actors Guild. He received his BFA from the University of Evansville and his MFA from New York University’s Graduate Acting Program. He resides in Newburgh with his wife, Kendra , and son, Owen.
Dennis received his BS Degree from Indiana State University, MA from Indiana State University, MFA from Indiana University, and is a graduate from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City. In NYC Mr. Black studied at the Michael Chekhov Studio for five years and graduated from their Teacher Training course. Since 1990 Dennis has taught at IUPUI, Butler University, Indiana University, and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
Prior to his years in educational theatre Dennis has twenty years of professional experience in New York City as actor, director, company manager, and artistic director. His acting includes Off-Broadway, tours, soaps, commercials, TV, industrial films, and voice overs. Outside of acting Mr. Black was Artistic Director and Co-Founder of The Original Cast a non-profit theatre company in NYC, for whom he produced and directed six productions. He alsoworked as Company Manager for the Off-Broadway production of Olympus On My Mind.
Eric Cope, recently relocated from New York City, has designed professionally for the past 10 years. In addition to entertainment lighting design, Eric has worked as a freelance scenic designer, a theatre consultant for Cosler Theatre Design, and as a professional draftsman for both theatrical and non-theatrical disciplines, as well as architectural lighting design.
Eric served as a resident designer for Florida State University/Asolo Conservatory for one season before serving as a visiting professor at the University of Texas at El Paso for two years. Eric’s own design work has been seen in Dallas, Texas; Creede, Colorado; Actors Theatre of Louisville; and in many venues in New York City. Eric has also served as an assistant on Broadway, Off-Broadway, Regional, and corporate events for various designers such as, David Korins, Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer, Brian Nason, and many others.
Eric is a member of United Scenic Artists 829 and holds an MFA in Stage Design from Southern Methodist University.
In addition to his scholarly work as a theatre historian, Dr. Douglas Hubbell, associate professor emeritus of theatre, has directed and designed sets for Indiana University, USI, Vincennes University and the New Harmony Theatre. An accomplished actor for over 40 years, he has also been seen on numerous stages as well as in two films.
Dr. Hubbell holds a masters degree from University of Iowa and a Ph.D. from Indiana University.
Shan Jensen, associate professor of
theatre, teaches costume design, stage make-up, costume technology,
costume crafts, and stage management.
Shan has designed extensively for stage and film. In New York, her work has been seen at the Samuel Beckett Theatre, The American Jewish Theatre, The Theatre In the Park, The Whole Theatre, The Village Gate and the Home For Contemporary Art and Theatre. She also designed The Dubliners for The Lincoln Centerís tour. Her film and television credits include McBain, The Accident, League of Their Own, Rude Awakening, Billy Bathgate, Brenda Starr, and A Special Friendship.
She has also styled numerous commercials over the years. In addition, Shan has been the resident costume designer for The New Harmony Theatre for the past sixteen seasons, designing such shows as Always Patsy Cline, The Cherry Orchard, Death of a Salesman, The Mystery of Irma Vep, Twelfth Night and She Loves Me.
She is a member of the United States Scenic Artists and received her MFA from the University of Virginia.
Amelia Kolkmeyer, Instructor in Theatre, holds a Master of Arts in Theatre from Lindenwood University. She recieved her B.A. in Theatre from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, and her A.F.A. in Vocal Performance from John A. Logan College.
Some of her past theatre credits include: Annelle in Steel Magnolias, Mrs. Harcourt in Anything Goes, Mrs. Eynsford-Hill in Pygmalion, and Sarlinda in James Thurbers’ 13 Clocks. Besides her work on stage, she has also been involved in various aspects backstage from Stage Manager to Props Master. Amelia has also been a dramaturge for Dance4Grandma's production Chicago, and another production of Anything Goes, done by John A. Logan College.
Deena Laska-Lewis trained at the Julliard School of Music in New York City, North Carolina School of the Arts, and received her Bachelors of Fine Arts degree from Indiana University. Her education includes training in Horton, Graham, Limon, and Vaganova techniques. Deena employs a graded Russian syllabus that stresses education on muscle structure for correct placement and alignment for dance development.
Her professional experience includes principal ballerina with the State of Israel Ballet Company as well as artistic director with other dance companies. Deena is currently the Artistic Director at the Children's Center for Dance Education which she founded in 1995. This rich experience brings to her classes a caliber of training, technique and style that have provided the foundation for many former students to enter the world of professional dance.
Kathy Riordan, Introduction to Theatre instructor, was a speech and theatre major at Indiana University where she holds a BS and a MS degrees. She has been a theatre educator and director for 39 years throughout the state of Indiana.
Professionally, she has worked with Indiana Repertory Theatre and Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park. She has written and directed original works for the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park Theatre Festival. As an actress she has been in plays, two movies, and various radio and television commercials.
Tommy Thompson, instructor of theatre, holds an MFA in theatre technology and a BS in theatre design and production from the University of Illinois. Professional credits include the Blues Clues Live national tour 2003, Western Michiganís Cherry County Playhouse, and the Veggie Tales Live national tour 2002. Tommy has served as technical director for University of Illinois at Urbana, Breadline Theatre Group, Heartland Theatre, and Morris Theatre Guild. He has also done scenic design and painting for many shows at Illinois State University, Breadline Theatre, and Morris Theatre. He is a member of I.A.T.S.E. Local 193.
Elliot H. Wasserman, department chair and professor of theatre, teaches courses in acting, directing, and playwriting. A member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, the professional union for directorial stage artists, Wasserman is currently the producing artistic director of New Harmony Theatre. Wasserman has directed major musicals at professional venues around the country, including such favorites as Guys and Dolls, The Sound of Music, Cabaret, Gigi, Man of La Mancha, and I Do! I Do!. During this career he has directed such Broadway stars as Kay McClelland, Tony award nominee Mark Baker, and Tony Award winner for Best Actress in a Musical Donna Mckechnie. In June 2007, he directed a production of A Few Good Men starring film actor Lou Diamond Phillips (La Bamba, Young Guns) and television star Jensen Ackles (Supernatural, Dark Angel, Smallville), and in 2008, he directed a production of Damn Yankees starring Richard Kind (Mad About You, Spin City, A Serious Man, Toy Story 3). Most recently, he directed a production of Anything Goes at Kansas City Starlight Theatre starring Rachel York(Victor/Victoria, Kiss Me Kate, Lucy). From 1992-2005 he served as artistic director of the Lincoln Amphitheatre.
Wasserman's University directing credits are diverse, ranging from Shakespeare and Chekhov to such contemporary playwrights as Samuel Beckett and Christopher Durang. He is an occasional actor, having performed such roles as Frank Butler in Annie Get Your Gun! and Joe Keller in All My Sons. In 2007, he appeared on the New Harmony Theatre stage in The Importance of Being Earnest.
A writer, Wasserman has created a translation/adaptation of Aristophanes’ Lysistrata, and his short play Outlaws received a New York premiere in 2003, after earlier productions in Los Angeles and at the Actors Theatre of Louisville.
In April of 2005, he was selected as one of eight theatre educators nationally as a Directing Fellow of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival in Washington, and in January of 2006 he was awarded the KCACTF Gold Medallion Award for Excellence in Theatre Education.