Denison Theatre presents “HERE US”
“HERE US” Premiering on YouTube November 19th at 8:00 pm
Voices of Color Perform
HERE US is a student led, virtual production of a series of original performances by Denison POC, including poetry, spoken word, music, dance, and imagery. 15 individual and group performances, featuring 34 artists, run 2 to 5 minutes each and the total running time of the video is 58 minutes. Work was completed and recorded during the Fall of 2020.
Fernanda Aiala ‘23 Singer
Kwaku Akuffo ‘23 Filmmaker, Writer-Performer
Julia Baggio ‘21 Dancer
Kathryn Boyd ‘21 Singer
Sky Calderón, ‘21 Performer
Tim Carpenter Improvisational Pianist
Tema Cohen ‘21 Singer
Edem Dake ‘21 Singer
Gitu Degefa ‘23 Singer
Cordero Leon Estremera ‘23 Writer-Performer
Olivia Harvey ‘23 Dancer
Bhavana Huliyar ‘23 Composer-Drummer
Zackary Johnston ‘22 Dancer
Amelia Jallabah ‘23 Writer-Performer, Discussant
Kenroyal Kogbara ‘22 Photographer
Alina Mayton ‘24 Writer-Performer
Tanajahnee McGee ‘23 Singer
Aniaha Ortiz ‘23 Writer-Performer, Discussant, Singer
Evelyn Puma ‘24 Dancer
Emma Rutherford ‘23 Singer
Sarah Scheuer ‘22 Singer
Wizdom Scott ‘21 Songwriter-Performer, Writer, Discussant
Tope Sholola ‘21 Writer-Performer
Yaz Simpson ‘23 Writer-Performer, Discussant
Julia St. John ‘22 Dancer
Faith Sutton ‘22 Singer, Discussant
Thy Trinh ‘22 Singer
Vaval Victor ‘20 Choreographer
Sophie Vilter ‘21 Dancer
Juan Pablo Zuluaga ‘22 Dancer
Project Facilitators Sky Calderón ‘21, Cordero Estremera ‘23, Yasmine Simpson ‘23
Producer Jim Dennen
Production Manager Kathy Peter
Production Stage Manager Isabella de Assis-Wilson, ‘24
Editors Florence Barrau-Adams, Chris Faur
Videographer & Video Artist Chris Faur
Camera Assistant Liam Lenzotti ‘24
Sound Designer & Audio Mixer Florence Barrau-Adams
Production Assistant Lauryn-Ann Harold
Lighting Designer Peter Pauzé
Lighting Designer for “We’re Impossibly Possible” Kathy Peter
Assistant Lighting Designer Jack Lehman ‘23
Costume Designer Rebecca Baygents Turk
Costume Shop Supervisor Joyce Merrilees
Visual Arts Consultant Micaela Vivero
Technical Director & Recording Engineer Andrew Johns
Assistant Technical Director & Recording Engineer Owen Beamer
Poster Design Lisa McLymont with Kathryn Boyd ‘21, Edem Dake ‘21, Wizdom Scott ‘21
Ron Abrams, Mark Bryan, Jason Bowles, Anastasia Congdon, Ojeya Cruz Banks, Asesha Dayal, Joan Dennen, Kaja Dunn, Arlo Francine, Josiah Gastineau, Melina Isolde, D.D. Jackson, Marla Krak, Jeff Kurtz, HyeKyung Lee, Holly Mark, Cheryl McFarren, Mike Morris, Peter Pauzé, Molly Shanahan, Scott Tribble, Cindi Turnbull
“A Conversation Among Black Women”
- Discussants Amelia Jallabah ‘23, Aniaha Ortiz ‘23, Wizdom Scott ‘21 Yasmine Simpson ‘23, Faith Sutton ‘22
- Photography Kenroyal Kogbara ‘22
- Creative Collaboration Florence Barrau-Adams
“Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez from the floor of House of Representatives, March 26, 2020”
- Words by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
- Performed by Sky Calderón ‘21
- Original Music by Kip Jones, ETHEL
- A Film by Kwaku Akuffo ‘23
- Original Music by Ralph Farris, ETHEL
- Written and Performed by Aniaha Ortiz ‘23
- Original Music by Cory Lee, ETHEL
“It’s a Wonderful World”
- Music by Louis Armstrong
- Interpreted and Performed by Ralph Farris, ETHEL
“Lay Me Down”
- Lyrics and Music by Sam Smith
- Performed by Faith Sutton ‘22
- Photos Made Available by Shutterstock
“Letter to My Younger Self”
- Written and Performed by Alina Mayton ‘24
- Original Music by Dorothy Lawson, ETHEL
- Written and Performed by Kwaku Akuffo ‘23
- Original Music by Ralph Farris, ETHEL
“Lift Every Voice and Sing”
- Lyrics by James Weldon Johnson
- Music by John Rosamond Johnson
- Performed by Tehillah: Fernanda Aiala ‘23, Kathryn Boyd ‘21, Tema Cohen ‘21, Edem Dake ‘21, Gitu Degefa ‘23, Tanajahnee McGee ‘23, Aniaha Ortiz ‘23, Emma Rutherford ‘23, Sarah Scheuer ‘22, Faith Sutton ‘22, Thy Trinh ‘22
- Written and Performed by Yasmine Simpson ‘23
- Original Music by Kip Jones, ETHEL
- Lyrics, Video Projections, Arrangement, and Performance by Wizdom Scott ‘21
- Beat by Scandibeats
“She Who Boxed Herself In”
- Taiko Drum Composition and Performance by Bhavana Huliyar ‘23
- Poem by Wizdom Scott ‘21
“Skin Bleaching Explained”
- Written and Performed by Tope Sholola ‘21
- Original Music by Dorothy Lawson, ETHEL
- Music and Lyrics by Joshuah Brian Campbell and Cynthia Erivo
- From the Movie “Harriet” by Focus Features
- Interpreted and Performed by Tim “Rev” Carpenter
Three Poems: “Oh My Soul,” “Getting Dressed,” & “Dear Mother”
- Written and Performed by Amelia Jallabah ‘23
- Original Music by Cory Lee, ETHEL
“We’re Impossibly Possible”
- Lyrics and Performance by Cordero Estremera ‘23
- Choreography by Vaval Victor ‘20
- Danced by IDM: Julia Baggio ‘21, Olivia Harvey ‘23, Zackary Johnston ‘22, Evelyn Puma ‘24, Julia St. John ‘22, Sophie Vilter ‘21, Juan Pablo Zuluaga ‘22
Fernanda Aiala (Singer, Tehillah Member) is a sophomore Biology major/Spanish minor from Boston, Massachusetts. Fernanda’s previous experiences include being a leader in her church choir, as well as performing in her high school’s show and a cappella choirs. She wishes to say thanks to all the coordinators for this production.
Kwaku Akuffo (Filmmaker, Writer-Performer) is a sophomore from Owings Mills, Maryland, who is majoring in Data Analytics. Kwaku serves as a Community Advisor, is Vice-President of Phi Beta Sigma, is the Treasurer and Community Service Chair for the Pan-Hellenic Council, and plays Club Basketball. “Huge shout out to everyone who helped make this production possible!!! Hope you guys enjoy the show!!! Stay blessed!!”
Julia Baggio (Dancer with IDM) is a senior Global Commerce and Economics double major from Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Julia, the Co-President, has danced with IDM since its inception and has performed in various events on campus such as D-day, Valentine’s Day, and MLK Day. She is also the Co-events chair for DISA, a Portuguese TA, a student technician for ITS Asset Management, works for both the Denison Sports Network and the bookstore, and is the student office assistant for the Alumni and Family Engagement and Annual Fund offices. “I would like to thank everyone that was involved with HERE US. Special thanks to Val, Joyce, Rebecca and Jim for making everything happen. IDM was proud to participate in this amazing project.”
Florence Barrau-Adams (Vail Visiting Artist, Editor, Sound Designer/Mixer) boasts over 20 years of experience working in audio/video media, having served as producer, director, writer, host, editor, and production engineer on various productions. She worked for WNYC NY Public radio, Simon & Schuster, Scholastic, Weston Woods Studios, to name a few. Florence was an integral part of creating eight audio programs for radio and web, from inception to implementation. She has produced, directed, edited audiobooks, and sound designed for film and theater productions. Currently, Florence produces two podcasts -Justice in America, a 2020 Webby Nominee that discusses topics in the American criminal justice system and explains what they are and how they work, and Citations Needed, a podcast about the intersection of media, PR, and power. Citations Needed boasts over 4,000 Patreon subscribers and well over a million downloads. Since 2004, Florence has taught media production at higher-educational institutions such as Brooklyn College, Ramapo College of New Jersey, and currently is an Adjunct Professor at New York University, Undergrad Film & TV. Florence is honored to be working with Denison students for the first time on HERE US. She has been inspired by their talent and depth.
Owen Beamer (Recording Engineer, Assistant Technical Director), originally a native of Newark, received a BA in Theatre from Denison University. During his years at Denison, he filled a variety of roles for a myriad of productions starting with serving as a backstage hand for Something’s Afoot. Owen’s main role was as a Stage Manager for Spite for Spite, Drowsy Chaperone, and The Miss Firecracker Contest and Assistant Stage Manager for Departures and Inherit the Wind. He was also a Sound Designer for The Nerd, Lighting Designer for Legacy of Light, lighting and sound operator, as well as an actor in Einstein and the Roosevelts. He is excited to return to Denison once again and serve as the Assistant Technical Director for the Eisner Center. Prior to returning to Denison, Owen spent several years working for Carnival Cruise Line as a backstage manager and automation trainer and then spent time working with the IATSE local chapter in Charlotte, NC. Owen has performed and worked with both Central Ohio Youth Ballet and Weathervane Playhouse in Newark in the past.
Kathryn Boyd (Singer, Tehillah Member) is a senior from Alabaster, Alabama, majoring in Studio Art. Prior to Here Us, she has performed at the Agape Bonfire and the Election Day A-Quad events. In addition, her artwork has been shown at the Here Our Voices Gallery and the Room Gallery of the Bryant Arts Center. Kat has also studied in Rome, Italy with the Temple University Visual Arts program. At Denison she is part of the Step Up Mentorship program and works at the Mitchell Center. “I’d like to thank Tehillah, my roommates, Lisa McLymont, and everyone else who helped put this production together.”
Sky Calderón (Performer, Facilitator) is a senior Religion major/Black Studies minor who is from Dayton, Ohio. On campus, she works in the mailroom, is a Senior Fellow and TA for the Religion department, is President of Denisonians for Planned Parenthood, and is a two-time Woodyard Summer Scholar. Sky wishes to thank Zoe Loitz and Jim Dennen as well as say, “Thank you to everyone who took a risk with being involved!”
Tim “Rev” Carpenter (Orchestrator & Improvising Pianist) began playing piano at the age of three. He received formal classical training at age four and continued his studies resulting in a piano scholarship to The University of Cincinnati, College Conservatory of Music. While studying classical piano he continued his love for Gospel music. He has worked with many of the legendary gospel artist including, Pastor Marvin Winans, Vicki Winans, Donnie McClurkin, Walter Hawkins, Tramaine Hawkins, Donald Lawrence, Fred Hammond, Commissioned and the Clark Sisters. “Rev”, (as he is affectionately called on campus), was a staff writer for Sparrow Records penning songs recorded by Bishop Norman L. Wagner and The Mt. Calvary Concert Choir, which gave him his first Stellar Award nomination. His song, “I Still Want You”, appears on Tramaine Hawkin’s Grammy winning album, “Tramaine…LIVE”! Tim is also heralded as a master studio musician. His work on Fred Hammond’s “Lift Up Your Heads” landed his name on another Grammy winning album, “Handel’s Soulful Messiah”, produced by Quincy Jones. Tim’s love for theatre provided him the opportunity to serve as Musical Director for two plays at the Cincy Playhouse in the Park during the two seasons that garnered them two Tony awards. Currently he is the Pastor of God’s Way Ministries International and serves Denison in different capacities. Rev would like to thank Jim and Yaz for the wonderful idea of this show, Kathy Peter for arranging the piano, and Chris Faur for his vision for visual effects.
Tema Cohen (Singer, Tehillah Member) is a senior from Ann Arbor, Michigan, double majoring in Psychology and French. She has been a part of many shows including the Singers’ Theatre Workshop productions of Chicago, (Roxie Hart), Batboy: The Musical (Shelley Parker), and Pirates of Penzance (Edith). She has also studied in Paris, France, through Sweet Briar College. On campus, Tema works as a Senior Interviewer and Tour Guide for the Office of Admissions, ARC tutor, TA for Modern Languages, and is on the Aug-O staff. “Special thanks to all who worked to put this together, and of course, thank you to my wonderful Tehillah family.”
Edem Dake (Singer, Tehillah Member) is a senior from Accra, Ghana, majoring in Studio Art and minoring in Psychology. In addition to singing with other gospel choirs, Edem has also previously performed with the Afro Spice Dance Collective. In addition, she is a Community Advisor with Denison’s Residential Communities and is the President of Tehillah. “I would like to thank James Dennen, Kathy Peter, Joyce Merrilees, Chris Faur and the entire team for working with us and helping us get everything done right and on time. All thanks be to God ultimately for the opportunity to be a part of this production.”
Isabella de Assis-Wilson (Production Stage Manager) is a first year student from Waynetown, Indiana, with majors in Theatre and Mathematics. Earlier this fall, she was one of the ensemble performers in So Full I Could Burst. In high school, Isabella appeared as Grace in Radium Girls.
Gitu Degefa (Singer, Tehillah Member), a sophomore Biology major from Chelsea, Massachusetts, has also previously performed with the Afro Spice Dance group. On campus, Gitu is a tutor and lab monitor with the Psychology department.
Jim Dennen (Producer) is an Assistant Professor of Theatre. Jim’s work as a theatre artist and director has been seen in regional theaters and festivals around the U.S. and abroad. He says this: ”I am filled with gratitude to have been part of this project. I would like to thank Cordero, Sky, and Yaz for their collaboration, their sensitivity to so many complexities, their patience, their energy, and their creativity. This project could not and would not have happened without you. And to Yaz, thank you for taking this long rewarding journey with me! You’re an inspiration. Also, I want to thank Kathy and Isabella for being willing to take on so much of the rush and effort and stress that goes along with such a giant enterprise; you made it all work so much better! And Chris and Florence, holy cow! You are both magicians who took amazing work and made it even more amazing (!!), and with such delicacy and artistry. We were all blessed by your presence in our midst. And, I want to thank ETHEL; your work is remarkable, as always! And I want to thank all the contributing artists on this project for their brilliance, and generosity, and courage. I’m changed for the better through my work with each of you! That’s the truth. And last, and most, I want to thank Anastasia, whose generous forgiveness and beauty of all kinds makes creative work possible.” Jim teaches Theatre-making, Directing, Public Speaking, and Performance Studies courses.
ETHEL (Original Music) is a virtuosic, alternative string quartet, established in New York City in 1998. Since then ETHEL has released nine feature recordings (one of them nominated for a Native American Music Award), performed as guests on 40+ albums, premiered 225 new works, won a GRAMMY® with jazz legend Kurt Elling, and performed in 14 countries, 45 states, and 250 cities. Among ETHEL’s many exciting and innovative enterprises, recent projects include touring the evening-length ETHEL’s Documerica, inspired by the tens of thousands of images shot in the 1970’s as collaboration with Taos Pueblo flutist Robert Mirabal; and Grace, a journey highlighting musical iterations of redemption and featuring ETHEL’s own adaptation of Ennio Morricone’s moving score to the 1986 film, The Mission. ETHEL is the Resident Ensemble at The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Balcony Bar, Ensemble-in-Residence at Denison University, 2019-20 Creatives-in-Residence at the Brooklyn Public Library, and most recently the 2018-19 Quartet-in-Residence at Kaufman Music Center’s Face the Music, and 2019 Levi Family Distinguished Visiting Artist at The Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University. ETHEL is Ralph Farris, Kip Jones, Corine Lee, and Dorothy Lawson.
Cordero Leon Estremera (Writer-Performer, Facilitator) is a sophomore from Iowa City, Iowa and is a double major in English (Creative Writing) and Philosophy. Previous performance experience includes show choir and involvement with a number of creative writing pieces. “I would like to thank all the students who bought into the project and put in the time. These students deserve to be highlighted because they’re awesome individuals and performers.”
Ralph Farris (Viola, ETHEL Artistic Director) is a Grammy-nominated arranger, an original Broadway orchestra member of The Lion King and former musical director for The Who’s Roger Daltrey. He has worked with Leonard Bernstein, Martin Scorsese, Depeche Mode, Natalie Merchant, Harry Connick Jr., Allen Ginsberg, Yo-Yo Ma and Gorillaz. A graduate of Walnut Hill School for the Arts, Ralph earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from The Juilliard School.
Christian Faur (Editor, Videographer, Video Artist) joined Denison as Director of Collaborative Technologies for the Fine Arts in 2001. He received his B.S. from University of Northridge California in the area of Physics and his MFA in the area of New Media from the University of Danube in Kerns, Austria. Chris is internationally acclaimed for his portraits created by hand-cast crayons and his artwork has been exhibited in museums and galleries throughout the United States, Korea and Europe.
Olivia Harvey (Dancer with IDM) is a sophomore from Boston, Massachusetts. She is a double major in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE) and Modern Languages (Spanish/French) with a concentration is Latin American/Caribbean Studies. Olivia is a member of the Sazón Latin Dance group, as well as an editor with “The Denisonian,” secretary for the Denison Democrats, president & founder of the PPE Society, and works as a TA for the Spanish Department. Olivia would like to acknowledge the creativity and hard work that everyone poured into this project.
Bhavana Huliyar (Composer-Drummer) is a sophomore double major in Biology and Global Health from Bangalore, India. She has previously appeared in a Taiko performance at TEDx Suzhou, was a performer for Tiger Taiko at DCSZ from 2013-2019, and completed training and performed Taiko in Osaka, Japan. On campus, Bhavana is an animal caretaker in the Bio department, an ARC tutor, a medical volunteer, reader for Stories on the Hill, and plays club volleyball. She would like to thank Seth Rogers, Chris Faur, Wizdom Scott and James Dennen for all they have done.
IDM (Dance Company) I.D.M. -Inspire, Diversify, & Move -is a hip-hop dance crew that aspires to diversify the dancing community on Denison’s campus with it’s innovative performances. The group was started by Denison Class of 2020 Alumni Val Victor and Ericia Bramwell in the fall of 2017 and has been growing ever since.
Amelia Jallabah (Writer-Performer) is a sophomore from Columbus, Ohio, who is a Political Science major with a concentration in Creative Writing. On campus, Amelia works in the Chemistry Stockroom. She would like to thank Cordero Estremera, Jim Dennen and Yasmine Simpson for her experience of working on this production.
Andrew Johns (Technical Director of The Eisner Center for the Performing Arts) holds an MFA in Technical Production from The University of Delaware. He began his professional career as a Staff Carpenter at Chicago’s Goodman Theatre. After serving as a Technical Director at Kenyon College for six years, he started at Denison in the Fall of 2001 as the Technical Director for the Theatre Department. He has also designed Lighting and Sound for various productions and provided support for Denison’s Music and Dance Departments. He has taught Stagecraft for Lighting, Scenery, and Sound production. Andrew has also worked for Wolf Trap Opera Company, Brevard Music Theatre, Illinois Shakespearean Festival, Utah Shakespearean Festival, Weathervane Playhouse, Actor’s Theatre of Columbus, MTVArts, The Bruce Jacklin Company, Available Light Theatre, and The Central Ohio Youth Ballet. In 2018 he was named the Technical Director for the Michael D. Eisner Center for the Performing Arts at Denison, providing support for the Theatre, Music, and Dance Departments in 6 performance spaces. Prior to the Eisner Center opening in the Fall of 2019, Andrew was an integral member of the Denison design team and helped to coordinate the construction, implementation, and commissioning of all technical performance elements within the Center. He is a member of The United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT).
Kip Jones (Violin, ETHEL Member) is known for his ebullient and innovative solo performances in a style he describes as “experimental folk.” A modern musical troubadour, he’s performed at scores of eclectic venues such as Ecuador’s Ministry of Economic Inclusion, Tirana’s Liceu Artistik “Jordan Misja,” two miles inside Chom Ong Tai cave in Laos, the summer homes of nomadic Mongolian herders, and platforms of most subway systems in North America. As a composer, his work has been commissioned by ensembles that include the Lake Superior Chamber Orchestra and A Far Cry. A native of Minnesota, Kip earned his degree in Violin Performance from the Berklee College of Music.
Zackary Johnston (Dancer with IDM) is a junior Financial Economics major/Dance minor from Washington, Pennsylvania. Zackary is also a member of the Denison Cross Country & Track teams and a member of Beta Theta Pi. “I would love to thank all of IDM for the love and support they have given me through these hard times; they truly make me feel like a member of the family. I would also love to thank my Mom and Dad who are near and dear to my heart and who are the source of my dancing career.”
Kenroyal Kogbara (Photographer) is a junior Global Commerce major from St. Louis, Missouri. At Denison, Kenroyal has worked at the Bandersnatch, a Host for the Admission department, and as a photographer. He would like to thank Yaz Simpson and Jim Dennen for his experience with Here Us.
Dorothy Lawson (Cello, ETHEL Artistic Director) has performed with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, the White Oak Dance Project, Philharmonia Virtuosi, the American Symphony Orchestra, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and numerous new music ensembles. Canadian-born, she completed degrees at the University of Toronto, the Vienna Academy and earned MM and DMA degrees from The Juilliard School. She teaches in the Preparatory Division of Mannes College at the New School in New York City.
Corin Lee (Violin, ETHEL Member) is one of the most sought-after violinists of his generation. He has appeared on the great American stages, traditional and otherwise—from Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium to The Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery; from Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center to EDC Las Vegas. Corin’s performances have been broadcast on Fox, CBS, and NBC News. His “musically marvelous” (Steve Reich) electronic arrangements have set the new standard for innovation in solo string performance. Corin received degrees from Juilliard (BM) and Yale School of Music (MM). In addition to concert work, he directs Liberated Performer®, a program that guides and trains musicians to defeat performance anxiety.
Jack Lehman (Assistant Lighting Designer) is a sophomore Philosophy, Politics & Economics major from Hudson, Ohio. Since being at Denison, Jack has been the Assistant Lighting and Scenic Designer for So Full I could Burst, a Sound Board Operator for Bojack Horseman, the Light Board Operator for Pirates of Penzance, and the Assistant Lighting Designer for It Shoulda Been You.
Liam J. Lenzotti (Assistant Videographer) is a first-year student from Worthington, Ohio, beginning a major in Theatre. In 2019, Liam appeared in Puffs as Cedric and Mr. Voldy.
Alina Mayton (Writer-Performer) is a first-year student from Washington, Pennsylvania, majoring in Communications and minoring in Spanish with a concentration in Latin American Caribbean Studies. Alina has been involved with all aspects of theatre for 7 years, including crew, stage management, and acting in her local theatre company as well as her school district. Alina would like to thank everyone involved, who has helped and motivated her during this long process. “I’m grateful to be a part of this production.”
Tanajahnee McGee (Singer, Tehillah Member) is a sophomore Psychology major from Columbus, Ohio. In her free time, Tanajahnee likes playing softball (just for fun), singing, dancing, and making beats. She also enjoys quality time with her friends and family. “Tehillah has given me the opportunity to explore my musical talents further, while also providing a safe community to grow and venture outside of my comfort zone.”
Lisa McLymont (Vail Visiting Artist, Collaborative Poster Designer) was born in Manhattan, NY and has called Columbus, Ohio home since the age of ten. Formally educated in graphic design and visual communications, McLymont’s career as a self-taught, multi-disciplinary artist includes forays into sculpture, metal-work, jewelry design, drawing and painting. Her ongoing series – The Universe Tribe – is focused on identity and inspired by the powerful style of protest posters, the movement of the seasons, and the soft mystery of artists Leo & Diane Dillon, Georgia O’Keefe and Susan Seddon Boulet, from whom she draws inspiration. Lisa is a graduate of The Ohio State University, where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Design through the Department of Design and Visual Communications. She was a 2010 Fellowship Recipient of The Ohio State University Arts Initiative Fellowship for Emerging Artists. She has served as an adjunct faculty member at Columbus College of Art and Design and Ohio Dominican University, both in Columbus, Ohio. A former member of the Ohio Art League and the Columbus Society for Communicating Arts, McLymont is one of the inaugural coordinators of the Greater Columbus Arts Council’s Columbus Open Studio & Stage event, The Art and Artists Of Ohio, an online community, and a founding member of Black, Out, & Proud. In 2019, McLymont was named one of Columbus Underground’s Top 10 Local Artists, and she is thrilled to be establishing new mentorship opportunities with Denison student artists.
Joyce Merrilees (Costume Realization and Shop Supervisor) received a B.S. in Textiles and Clothing, with a focus in Design and Construction from the Ohio State University. As the Eisner Center Costume Shop Supervisor, Joyce works closely with Dance, Music, and Theatre, bringing designer and choreographer renderings to a functional reality and is instrumental in guiding the student staff to achieve a proficiency in the craft of sewing. While her career began with custom sewing, alterations, and design for the public domain, Joyce has since enjoyed many years of costume realization in Theatre and Dance and, more recently, Singer’s Theatre.
A. Ortiz (Writer-Performer, Tehillah Member) is a sophomore Creative Writing/East Asian Studies double major from Brooklyn, New York. Prior to COVID, she worked with two small theater companies in Brooklyn to put together multiple original shows. In high school she also appeared in choir and theatre productions. On campus she is a Community Senator for the BSU and off campus likes to eat the buffalo wings or the Thai curry wings from Mai Chau. “Corin Lee -Thank you! As you heard, my first interaction with combining music and poetry was eh ? But the music sounds incredibly beautiful here. Something I would definitely do again with someone like you. :)”
Peter Pauzé (Lighting Designer) is an Associate Professor of Theatre at Denison, where he has variously directed and designed scenery and lighting for more than seventy-five productions. Mr. Pauzé holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in Dramatic Writing from the University of Georgia. His play, Perpetual Present Tense, produced at CATCO’s Shorts Festival, shared both CATCO’s “Best In Fest” award and the Central Ohio Theatre Critics Circle “Best New Work” award. His original musical, The Tragicall Historie of the Life and Death of Christopher Marlowe, was produced at Denison in 1999. In 2008, he was the recipient of an R.C. Good Fellowship from Denison, which enabled him to spend a full year writing Departures, which premiered here in 2009. His play, Theatres of War, which was a winner of the Deep South New Play Contest, was produced at Denison in 2013. This past Fall, he designed scenery for two productions by the Gallery Players in Columbus: Driving Miss Daisy and A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder.
Evelyn Puma (Dancer with IDM) is a first-year student from Chicago, Illinois, double majoring in Economics and Public Policy and Affairs and minoring in Spanish. On campus, Evelyn also serves as a Museum Intern.
Emma Rutherford (Singer, Tehillah Member) is a sophomore Philosophy, Politics and Economics major and Theatre minor from Sydney, Australia.
Yaz Simpson (Writer-Performer, Facilitator) is a sophomore from Chicago, Illinois, double majoring in Psychology and Cinema. Previously, Yaz was a semi-finalist in the “Louder Than A Bomb” poetry competition in Chicago. On campus Yaz has been a Minister of Records for the BSU, a Community Advisor in Shorney, a member of Sister to Sister, and was President of the Freshman Foundation last year. She has also previously worked as a student intern at the Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. “I would like to thank Jim Dennen for having such an amazing impact on the production. He and I have been working on this production since the summer and having it come to life is a dream come true. I would also like to thank the facilitators, Sky and Cordero; I couldn’t have done this project without them. They have proven to be reliable, trustworthy people, and I’m so happy to have met them both. I’d like to thank everyone who participated in the production as well, from the student artists to the staff and faculty, I’m incredibly grateful for this opportunity and hope to see the HERE US production annually.”
Sarah Scheuer (Singer, Tehillah Member) is a junior from Nyack, New York. She is an Environmental Studies major with a concentration in Journalism. Her previous performance experience includes being involved in musicals as well as being the soprano voice captain for her high school competition a cappella group. She is also a singer for her family’s band, The Malino Family Band, which performs in NYC and the surrounding areas. “Thank you to my wonderful fellow members of Tehillah who inspire me and uplift me every time we sing together. I feel honored to be a part of it.”
Wizdom Renee Scott (Songwriter-Performer) is a senior from Dayton, Ohio, majoring in Studio Art and minoring in Psychology. Wizdom has been involved in many activities on campus including World of Dance, the 50th Anniversary for the Black Student Union, and the 2019 Summer Research Installation. Additionally, Wizdom is part of the Step Up Mentorship program and works at the Crown Fitness Center desk. “Thank you, James Dennen, Yaz Simpson, Kat Boyd, Tarma Obeng, Kezia Danso, Florence, Chris Faur, and my mother.”
Temitope Oyinkansola Sholola (Writer-Performer) is a senior Black Studies/English double major from Lynn, Massachusetts. She explores her identity as a Nigerian-American writer through poetry and short stories. “I would like to thank Chris Faur, Dorothy Lawson, Florence Barrau-Adams and James Dennen for believing in my vision and mentoring me through this project.”
Julia St. John (Dancer with IDM) is a junior Health, Exercise, and Sport Studies major from Dublin, Ohio. In addition, Julia is a Zumba instructor, a member of AED Pre-health Honor Society, and one of the Denison medical volunteers. “Thank you so much to Val Victor for helping to envision this piece, to all the people who helped with costumes and filming, and to my IDM family for making this experience so special and fun!”
Faith Sutton (Performer, Tehillah), a junior from Columbus, Ohio, is double majoring in Psychology and Black Studies. Previous performance experience includes involvement in children’s theater, acting and working on stage crews for high school productions, and singing with various choirs since she was just 4 years old. Faith is heavily involved on campus from working in the Offices of Multicultural Student Affairs and Gender & Sexuality to being the First Year president of the African Student Association, a Minister of Student Affairs for the Black Student Union, and a Paving the Way Ambassador and Mentor Coordinator.
Tehillah is Denison’s only gospel a cappella group. They are dedicated to spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ and His love. Tehillah also aims to uplift the community through song, and to foster the exposure of the Denison community to a positive and inspirational message through showcasing various arrangements of gospel music.
Thy Trinh (Singer, Tehillah Member) is a junior Biochemistry major from Ha Noi, Vietnam. Thy has enjoyed being part of the a capella group, especially because they perform so many beautiful and inspiring gospel songs. Additionally, she is also on the staff for the Food Recovery Network here on campus.
Rebecca Baygents Turk (Costume Designer) is a costume designer and arts educator with over twenty years of experience, whose art has been featured by premier theatre and ballet companies around the globe. She promotes equity, creativity, and play through her art, research, and collaborations. Outside of the university, Dr. Turk leads design and craft workshops in community and museum settings with participants from 5 to 60+ years of age. She holds a PhD in Arts Administration, Education and Policy with specializations in Art Education and the Analysis of Material Culture. Her research interests include trans-disciplinary educational practices, material culture, costume & performance, and practice as research.
Vaval Victor ‘20 (Vail Visiting Artist, Choreographer) is a Dancer and Choreographer currently based in New Orleans, Louisiana. He is in the process of developing his production company “VvV” and hopes to solidify the company after he graduates business school at Tulane University in the year 2022. Vaval has been in works created by Black Lives Matter Co-Founder Patrisse Cullors, Ojeya Cruz-Banks, Sandra Mathern-Smith, Molly Shanahan. Lastly, Vaval creates dance inspired by black culture. His choreographic process uses methodologies from dance anthropology and continues to create work related to finding the relationship between dance and culture. Val would like to thank the Theatre Department and Denison University for the amazing opportunity to work on this project.
Sophie Vilter (Dancer with IDM) is a senior, from Darien, Connecticut, double majoring in Mathematics and Data Analytics. Dance info needs clarification. Sophie also serves as a tutor and TA for the Math department. Sophie would like to especially thank Cordero and Vaval Victor for their contributions to this production.
Juan Pablo Zuluaga (Dancer with IDM) is a junior Health, Exercise, and Sport Studies major from Revere, Massachusetts. Juan Pablo works in the Denison mail room and also serves as the Vice President for IDM. “Thank you so much to the Theatre Department and to Cordero for the spoken word piece, and to the rest of the IDM crew who put in so much time and effort alongside me.”
MICHAEL D. EISNER CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS
- Margot Singer, Director
- Kathy Peter, Operations Manager
- Michael S. Morris, Director, Vail Series
- Marla Krak, Community Engagement Coordinator
- Andrew Johns, Technical Director
- Owen Beamer, Assistant Technical Director
- Joyce Merrilees, Costume Shop Supervisor
THE DEPARTMENT OF THEATRE
- Mark Evans Bryan, Associate Professor & Chair & Jonathan R. Reynolds Distinguished Professor in Theatre
- Peter Pauzé, Associate Professor
- Cheryl McFarren, Associate Professor
- James Dennen, Assistant Professor
- Eleni Papaleonardos, Visiting Assistant Professor
- Rebecca Baygents Turk, Visiting Assistant Professor
- Monica Graffeo, Academic Administrative Assistant
- Marilyn Sundin, AAA Emerita
- Cynthia Turnbull, Professor Emerita
- Jon R. Farris, Professor Emeritus
EISNER STUDENT PRODUCTION CREW: Camron Alten-Dunkle, Zach Demet, Alyssa Gebhart, William Mac Hammet, David Henning, Meg Jaffy, William Kelsey, Ellie Laird, Jack Lehman, Kaylah Linkiewicz, Mia Rhodes, Mathew Sing, Gayla Wolcott
COSTUME SHOP STUDENT STAFF: Millie Ball, Madeline Borger, Ashley Butler, Katie Dempier, Riley DiGiulio, Lucy Dobson, Caroline Elliot, Tali Ferguson-Nieves, Danni Gutelius, Giulia Hage, Katie Lauck, Chloe Pruett, Ben Rayhill, Maggie Senesac, Evan Snively, Georgia Sullivan, Ellie Walker, Sarah Wuellner, Andy Zabinski