ANN ANTOSHAK is a graduate of The Cooper Union School of Art, where she studied painting, print making, photography, and graphic design. An award winning art director and graphic designer, she has been the art director at some of New York's most esteemed cultural and educational institutions--The New York Public Library, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and currently--New York University. Her private clients include The New Press, The Ford Foundation, The White House Endowment Fund, New York Council for the Humanities, and the American Philosophical Society. She has been a trustee of the Hamilton Park Neighborhood Association for the past 6 years, and has been living in downtown Jersey City for over 13 years, where she and her husband are raising their young son. For JCCT, Ann will use her experience in higher education to supervise the school's marketing and communications, and outreach efforts.
CORDIS HEARD began her theatrical and teaching carreers in Chicago, where in 1968 she worked with Viola Spolin and Paul Sills on the first production and performance of THE STORY THEATER at what became known as The Body Politic Theater. Simultaneously she was working with the Chicago Committee for Urban Opportunity in the Neighborhood Theater Project on the southwest side of Chicago. Since then these two strands have been her lifelong parallel careers-theater and theater with and for children. She has had an extensive theatrical career, both on and off Broadway, in television and film, as well as being part of many art and lieracy programs throughout the NY Public School System. These include, among others, The Lincoln Center Institute, Urban Stages, The Leadership Program, as well as being the Co-Director for the past ten years of the Renaissance Afterschool Program at P.S.9 on the upper west side of Mahattan. It is my heartfelt conviction that children learn through stories and games. They intuitively know and can teach us, adults, the value of play.
RACHEL OAKES is a graduate of the two-year conservatory program at New Actors Workshop and received her BA in Theatre in Educational and Community Context. She has studied extensively in improvisation and worked with such improvisation troupes as God Freedom Fantastic and the critically acclaimed transformational improvisation company Present Elevation. Rachel has worked as Manager of Improvisation at Florida Studio Theatre in Sarasota, Florida, where she taught adult classes, children’s classes and camps. She was also a teaching artist in the Write-a-Play program, which conducts in-school workshops using improvisational tools to teach children about playwriting. Rachel has taught classes for the New York Conservatory of Dramatic Arts, New Actors Workshop, and The People's Improv Theatre. Rachel has also worked as a Teaching Assistant in a Young Autism Program on Long Island.
MICHAEL SHAWN O'KEEFE (Mike) has 14 years' experience in community and professional theater, on stage and behind the scenes. He coached, directed and trained hundreds of youth at the award winning Peacock Players summer theater camp, and last year managed the Young Company, an apprenticeship program for older teens. Mike founded and directed two NH improv troupes, one for adults and another for children, taught improv and coached inner city school students in Brooklyn. Mike is a graduate of The New Actors Workshop in Manhattan, and co-founder of the Chalk Circle Theater Company. He is thrilled to be working with Kathy Hendrickson again and sharing the joy of theater expression with Jersey City Children’s Theater.
KRISTIN TANZER is a director, producer, interdisciplinary theatre-maker, and teacher. From early-career stagings of Story Theater productions in New York City’s public gardens to fully realized performance works in many of Manhattan’s signature downtown venues, Tanzer has dedicated her artistic career to innovating theatrical forms and fostering collaborations between artists of seemingly disparate genres. Tanzer’s work has been seen in many New York City theatres, including the Barrow Street Theatre, Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater, HERE Arts Center, Ohio Theatre, Baryshnikov Arts Center, Flea Theatre, and Dixon Place, among others. Her work has also been presented by the California Institute of Technology, as well as at the Mt. Tremper Arts Festival. In addition to her performance work, Tanzer has dedicated herself to teaching professional actors, dancers, and performers of all kinds. She has been on faculty and/or a guest artist at the Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies, The New Actors Workshop, New York Academy of Dramatic Art, New Jersey Performing Arts Center, New York University, and Towson University, among other institutions. Tanzer also has a long history of working with young people, teaching Pre-K through 12th Grade within the public school system, as well as teaching for independent youth-focused arts organizations. Tanzer has also worked with a wide spectrum of special needs students. She believes passionately in the importance of an arts education for young people as a foundation for successful development.