Our Team

Meet Our Team
    • Amy White Graves
      Executive Director

      Amy White Graves

      Executive Director

      Amy White Graves is a music theatre educator and director, a voice and piano teacher, and has performed across the country and Off-Broadway in the hit “I LOVE YOU, YOU’RE PERFECT, NOW CHANGE” from 2000 to the present.  Amy has served in some capacity (as a Music Director, Director/Choreographer, Production Manager, Publicity and Marketing Manager, Jingle-Writer, set, props, and costume designer, or all of the above) on every BCT production. She has been teaching music and theatre to children for 15 years. She holds a B.F.A. in Acting from NYU Tisch-CAP 21 and is a member of Actors Equity Association and Screen Actors Guild.

       

       

    • Chris Heller
      Artistic Director

      Chris Heller

      Artistic Director

      Chris Heller has been an arts educator in New York City for 18 years.  At Brooklyn Children’s Theatre, she serves as a director, choreographer and playwright with students of all ages as well as organizing productions and mentoring faculty members.  She also works for Arts Connection as a freelance teaching artist at various New York City schools and as a mentor for drama specialists and other teachers creating arts in schools.  In addition, Chris spent 9 years as a high school teacher in the New York City public school system.  During that time she developed self-sustaining performing arts programs, directed 15 shows with middle school and high school students and collaborated with teaching artists and outside arts organizations to bring artists into the classroom. Chris is also on the faculty at Mark Morris Dance Center and Gibney Dance Center where she teaches the Simonson Jazz Technique and assists Lynn Simonson in her teacher training course.  As a dancer, she has performed her own work as well as choreography by Katiti King, Jana Hicks, Max Stone and with Bliss Dance Theatre. She has a M.A. in Educational Theatre from New York University.

       

    • Jen Clarke
      Director of Development/Music Director

      Jen Clarke

      Director of Development/Music Director

      Jen Clarke has been an educator of children of all ages and adults for 15 years. Trained in classical piano, as a child she hid Broadway show sheet music inside her Mozart books. Since then, she has been an accompanist at the Studio Theatre (Washington D.C.), summer camps, ballet classes, as well as her own living room in Windsor Terrace, where she hosts regular “Don’t Worry if You Think You’re Tone Deaf” sing-a-longs. While not at BCT, Jen designs multimedia curricula and professional development workshops for an inquiry and project-based program that helps students develop teamwork, communication, problem-solving, and critical thinking skills. She also regularly trains for local triathalons, and always sings BCT songs in her head to give her the confidence and inspiration to complete the endurance events. Jen has music directed for BCT for the past three years. She has a Master’s of Education and Media from Harvard Graduate School of Education.

    • Lindsay MacNaughton
      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      Lindsay MacNaughton

      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      Lindsay MacNaughton is an actress and teaching artist, performing and teaching all over NYC. After graduating from Syracuse University with her BFA in Drama, this Jersey girl set off on a crazy journey across the US and Canada with Missoula Children’s Theater, bringing theatre to deserving communities each week for a year. This solidified her lifelong love of the stage as well as her passion for teaching. Nowadays she can be seen in classrooms across the city teaching drama, musical theater, and dance with Arts Connection. She is a production advisor to Broadway Jr. which gives middle schoolers here in NY the opportunity to perform on a Broadway Stage! And at The Creative Arts Studio, in Boerum Hill Brooklyn she is the resident Drama and Music teacher as well as The Coordinator for their Summer Arts Camp. She also directs Creative Arts Studio’s Student Theatre Company (CASTCO). She also directs with Brooklyn Children’s Theatre in Park Slope. As an actress Lindsay has appeared in numerous productions here in NY and regionally including Cortland Repertory Theatre, MOC Musical Theatre, Elephant Theatre, Abington Stage, NYC Fringe, Strawberry One-Act Festival, Alphabet Arts plus many many more. In addition to the stage, she works as a voice over actor. You can also catch Lindsay performing with the award winning improv/sketch comedy group Story Pirates.

    • Scott Evan Davis
      Teaching Artist: Music Director and Resident Composer

      Scott Evan Davis

      Teaching Artist: Music Director and Resident Composer

      Scott Evan Davis is a three time MAC Award nominee (2014-2015) and three time finalist for the Wallowich award as well as recipient of the 2012 Broadway World award for best original song (IF WE SAY GOODBYE). After attending Emerson College in Boston as well as AMDA in New York City, Scott set his sights on becoming a composer/lyricst. Since then, he has presented concerts of his work in Boston,  NYC, Alabama, NJ, LA, London,  Dublin and Austraila. Scott’s debut album is called “Cautiously Optimistic”: featuring performances by Faith Prince, Liz Callaway, Jason Graae, Lisa Howard, Nikki Renee Daniels and others. Scott has been privileged to also have Rebecca Luker,  Karen Mason, Alison Fraser, and Kristen Chenoweth either perform or acknowledge his work.  Scott has been a vocal coach/musical director for the past 13 years. He has written musicals and instructed at Brooklyn Children’s Theatre for five years.  He has been working with children with autism using musical theatre, and is featured in a documentary with them called Spectrum of Hope.  His most recent revue, “Picture Perfect” made its London and Australian debut after a sold out run in New York and LA.  Scott is currently working on his newest musical, INDIGO as well his second album, NEXT featuring Karen Mason, Robert Cuccioli and others.  He is dedicated to teaching young performers and has an approach that is fun and exciting while enabling children to see performing in a new light. More at www.scottevandavis.com

    • Jenny Campbell
      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      Jenny Campbell

      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      Jenny Campbell is a director, puppeteer and teacher in NYC. She has performed in many experimental theatre productions, most recently with Phantom Limb Company for the Rauschenburg Residency in Captiva, FL, Berkleley Rep in San Francisco, CA and LaMama in New York. Jenny has performed in various productions directed by master puppeteer Basil Twist in Philadelphia and for the Houston Grand Opera and in NYC. She
      has also directed, performed and produced puppetry in short films, children’s shows, pilots and music videos. She is directing Daniel Allen Nelson’s “Give Me Back My Beast” at LaMama Gallery this fall. Jenny teaches puppetry, improv, devising and musical theatre to kids and teachers all over the city with ArtsConnection and Brooklyn Children’s Theatre.

    • Aimee Rose Ranger
      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer and Improv

      Aimee Rose Ranger

      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer and Improv

      Aimee Rose Ranger is a local actor, storyteller, and stand up comedian.  She will be in starring in a Caryl Churchill play this winter with Red Garnet Theater Company, a Brooklyn-based company. She runs a monthly comedy variety show in Boston, and has been an organizer of storytelling events and other variety shows for years. She also has taught children in various arts programs for eight years since graduating from Emerson College. Aimee Rose is currently taking improv classes at UCB Theater. She continues to perform all over New York and New England. Teaching inspires her art; there is nothing like the imagination of children to keep an artist grounded in the spirit of play.

    • Mariko Watt
      Teaching Artist: Music Director

      Mariko Watt

      Teaching Artist: Music Director

      Mariko Watt has been singing for the greater part of her life and teaching voice for over a decade. Since moving to New York in 2008, she has worked out of her home studio with professional and community-based artists of all ages, teaching vocal technique as well as performance and audition coaching. She is currently a music and performing arts teacher at the International School of Brooklyn, teaches individual lessons and workshops at Acme Hall Studios in Park Slope, and also music directs and accompanies for local schools and theater productions.  She is also currently involved as a singer and performer in multiple choirs throughout New York City. Mariko received her Masters in Theatre Education from Emerson College.

    • Brett Pontecorvo
      Teaching Artist: Music Director

      Brett Pontecorvo

      Teaching Artist: Music Director

      Brett Pontecorvo is a New York City based musical director, accompanist, and pianist who believes it is important to show people, through hands-on experience, the value of art and community. Brett has been privileged to work with theatre companies such as New Haarlem Arts Theatre and The In-Between People, Theatre Lapis, and The Gallery Players as a musical director. Over the last 8 years he has dedicated much of his time to making sure that future generations of performers are cultivated in the theatre arts. He has worked as a teaching artist for numerous companies such as The clocktower Players, Dalton School, P.S. 69, and Brooklyn Children’ Theatre. He also worked as a general music teacher at St. Aloysius school for a year. Professionally, Brett spends much of his time working as an accompanist for various vocal instructors in the city, as well as playing in pits. He has worked as a copyist as well as a keyboard programmer. Outside of the realm of musical theatre he works as a part of the band Fate Of Fools.

    • Lauren Ruff
      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      Lauren Ruff

      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      Originally from Oregon, Lauren received her BFA in Musical Theater from The New School by way of AMDA NY.   She has performed Off Broadway in Shout The Mod Musical, Passion, Stop The World, The Boyfriend among many other plays, musicals and workshops.  Her work can also be seen on screen, in a few cameos on Saturday Night Live, in several short films and the acclaimed web series, Big City, which she wrote produced and starred in. Two of her projects, Callie Wants a Solo and Boys and Other Distractions, have gone on to win audience choice at the Brooklyn Short Film Festival and have been featured selections at the New York Independent Film Festival and Williamsburg Independent Film Festival, among others.  Lauren is also a professional Voice Over artist having voiced various commercials for TV, Radio and Internet as well as cartoons!  She has been a teaching artist for the past five years, teaching acting, musical theater, voice lessons and voice over.  She has directed several of musicals for kids including, The Sound of Music, Seussical, Shrek, Peter Pan, Thoroughly Modern Millie Jr., Little Women, Into The Woods Jr., and Legally Blonde Jr.

    • Cassidy Dermott
      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      Cassidy Dermott

      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      Cassidy Dermott is a local actress and singer and is thrilled to join the BCT team! She holds a degree in Theatre and Dance from Dickinson College and is a proud alum of the Headlong Performance Institute in Philadelphia, where she received specialized training in physical theatre and clown. Currently, Cassidy studies classical text at the Pearl Conservatory in NYC and has recently appeared with 8Players, the 13th Stret Repertory Theatre, and Gallery Players, in projects ranging from improv to Shakespeare.  She loves sharing her passion for the magic of theatre with others and has served as a teaching artist for several theatre companies across the east coast, including Theatre Horizon, Rehoboth Summer Children’s Theatre, Pendragon Theatre, and KJK Productions. www.cassidydermott.com

    • Lawrence Rush
      Teaching Artist: Music Director

      Lawrence Rush

      Teaching Artist: Music Director

      Lawrence Rush was twice a Richard Rodgers Award finalist for his musicals, Winter of the Fall and Pride & Prejudice – the Musical, which was also chosen by FWD Theatre Project for development and a public reading in Chicago, was performed in concert at 54 Below, and will have its first full production in England this Fall. He is co-composer of Under the Influence (OUTwright Theatre Festival, Portland, OR), is composer/lyricist for A Maiden’s Consent, a bi-lingual musical which twice toured high schools on a national tour, and co-composer/arranger for Rules for Girls (L.A. Weekly Best Musical nomination). The Way to Your Heart, the Words and Music of Lawrence Rush played at Don’t Tell Mama and his song cycle, Four Elizabeth Barrett Browning Sonnets received performances in the U.S. and Austria. He received the Shalshelet award for Jewish choral music for Sim Shalom which is performed at synagogues throughout the country. His songs and arrangements have been performed by the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus, the Turtle Creek Chorale and Musaic. A member of the BMI Advanced Musical Theater Workshop, he is also a teaching artist, musical director, stage director, singer and actor.

    • Anne Stella
      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      Anne Stella

      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      As an actress, Anne Stella has worked with various theater companies, including the Tony Award winning La Jolla Playhouse. In addition to acting, she has worked as a drama and public speaking teacher, acting coach, and director. Anne currently works as a professor of public speaking and has served as a casting assistant for the Off Broadway theatre, Stageplays Theatre Company, and has worked in talent management with The Group Entertainment and Lauren Singer Talent Management. She received a Masters of Fine Arts degree in Acting from the University of California, San Diego, which ranked with Yale and NYU in the top three MFA Acting programs. She is a proud member of Actor’s Equity Association.

    • Craig Baldwin
      Resident Composer

      Craig Baldwin

      Resident Composer

      Craig Baldwin has been involved with the Broadway productions of Martin Short’s Fame Becomes Me (Associate Conductor), 13, The Woman in White, La Cage Aux Folles, 42ndStreet (Oscar cover),  Jesus Christ Superstar,  The Wild Party, and Swan Lake, as well as the Christmas Spectacular at  Radio City Music Hall. He is currently on staff at the School of American Ballet/New York City Ballet. He served as musical director for  Duncan Sheik/Steve Sater’s Nightingale with director James Lapine at New York Theatre Workshop and Duncan Sheik’s Whisper House at New York Stage and Film.   Recently, he composed the music for the York Theatre’s production of Let’s Face It in January, and provided additional material for an Oct 2010 production of the opera Esperanza. He holds a Master’s Degree from the Manhattan School of Music in Piano Performance and a Bachelor’s Degree from the UW-Madison in music and mathematics.

    • Elyssa Samsel
      Teaching Artist: Music Director

      Elyssa Samsel

      Teaching Artist: Music Director

      Elyssa Samsel (composer) is an actress/violinist/pianist/composer.
      Elyssa and Kate most recently wrote MY LITTLE BRONY, and LLAMAZE 101 for 4@15 Festival at NYU (dir. Brian Blythe), and were featured in NYTB’s monthly series at the D-Lounge in October 2012. Samsel and Anderson developed CAMP WISH-NO-MORE with NYU Steinhardt.  Elyssa is a member of the BMI Advanced Workshop, and trained for Musical Theatre Performance at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy. She is a member of AFA. More info can be found on SamselAnderson.com <http://samselanderson.com/>  or ElyssaSamsel.com

    • Steven Bergman
      Resident Composer

      Steven Bergman

      Resident Composer

      Steven Bergman’s credits with BCT include: “Melampus,” “Reigning Cats and Dogs,” “Lost Princess of Oz.” Other scores: “Animal Farm,” “The Curse is Reversed!”Jack The Ripper: The Whitechapel Musical,” “Four Kisses” and “Perfect Sync.” As Musical Director: over 100 regional and national productions including “Spring Awakening” (FUDGE Theater), “Rent” (Theater at the Mount), “Les Miserables,” “13” (ACTS), “The Add1ng Mach1ne” (Speakeasy Stage), “Annie,” “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast”  (Wheelock Family Theatre), “The Who’s Tommy,” (Brandeis Theatre Company), “Das Barbecü” (w/ Amy Graves! at New Repertory Theatre), “The Gig” and “When Pigs Fly” (Lyric Stage Company), “Berlin to Broadway with Kurt Weill“, “The Fantasticks“, “Pirates of Penzance” (Worcester Foothills Theatre), and the world premiere of “Monsters the Musical” (Centastage). Keyboardistcredits include “Nunsense Jamboree” (national tour with Georgia Engel, CD/DVD with Vicki Lawrence), national tours of “Sunday in the Park with George“, “Dreamgirls“, and “Guys and Dolls”.

    • Steve Saari
      Resident Composer

      Steve Saari

      Resident Composer

      Steve Saari is a piantist/musical director who has worked extensively in New York City and across the country. He has music directed and performed on Broadway, Off-Broadway, regionally and internationally. His solo piano recording Variations on a Theme was released in 2001 in association with Waddell Production and Soapbox Records.

      For BCT, Steve has composed Little Golden Hood, The Lupine Lady, Things Could Always Get Worse, Ferdinand, The Little Velvet Bunny,Rock #3, The Gods, Recess, Next to Abnormal, and Dancing With the Czars. He was the arranger and musical director for the opening number of the 2007 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade which featured 600 young performers from around the United States.

      Steve was on staff at the American Girl Place live theatre in New York City, which featured young girls and adults, and he has served as a musical director and arranger with Camp Broadway.  Steve is currently working internationally as a vocal director for Royal Caribbean Cruise lines.  www.stevesaari.com <http://www.stevesaari.com>

    • Kate Anderson
      Teaching Artist: Playwriting

      Kate Anderson

      Teaching Artist: Playwriting

      Kate Anderson is a performer, pun-maker upper, and half of the writing team Samsel/Anderson. Their work has been featured in the New York Theater Barn’s D-Lounge Series, The Platform: London, as well as “4@15” with NYU Steinhardt and UC Irvine. They have penned three short musical comedies, “Camp Wish-No-More”, “Llamaze 101”, and “My Little Brony”. “Camp Wish-No-More”, an original musical about a camp for delusional girls who believe they are Disney Princesses, was developed into a full length 90 minute musical, and presented as a staged reading with NYU Steinhardt in the fall of 2013. Kate and Elyssa contributed “Kittens First Full Moon” based on the book by Kevin Henkes to Theatreworks USA’s “Fly Guy and Other Stories” which will tour the US in the fall of 2014. Kate and Elyssa are currently working on some exciting new projects including a full length musical adaptation of a bestselling novel.

    • Dana Panepinto
      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      Dana Panepinto

      Teaching Artist: Director/Choreographer

      Dana Panepinto is an NYC teaching artist with an MFA in Theatre Performance from the University of Florida and a BFA from the University of Southern Mississippi in Theatre, minoring in Dance. A native of New Orleans, she considers herself New Yorker after 13 years of city living. Throughout her time in New York, Dana has balanced teaching Theatre, Dance, and Visual Art with performing in such classics as Macbeth, Trojan Women, and The Man that Came to Dinner as well as other contemporary and original productions. Teaching the arts has become her greatest pleasure in recent years having worked for internationally acclaimed arts organizations such as Nation Dance Institute, and the award winning Stages of Learning. She continues to develop and master the techniques of teaching the arts effectively, yet joyfully through other arts working with Wingspan Arts, Artsconnection, LEAP, the JCC as well. Dana has worked with a diverse population of students in the public school systems in Brooklyn, Manhattan, the Bronx and Queens, including Professional Developments with classroom teachers and Parent Workshops. The most exciting part of her work has been when working with eager performers to create something that has never existed before, writing original scripts, lyrics, choreography, and thinking up costumes and sets. The arts all together on one stage, giving the performer confidence and an experience they will never forget. She cannot wait to join forces this summer with Brooklyn Children’s Theatre to make some more magic!

    • Daniel Acquisto
      Resident Composer

      Daniel Acquisto

      Resident Composer

      Daniel Acquisto and Sammy Buck are the 2004 winners of The National Music Theater Network and The Theater for the American Musicals’ inaugural New Voices Prize for the musicalLike You Like It. Dan has been commissioned to write pieces for theatre (Dancing in the DarkAntigone: The Rock Musical – Studio Arena Theatre, TADA!, eight children’s musicals for Merkin Hall, Indiana State Fair), incidental theatre music for the Subjective Theatre Company and All Out Arts Festival, as well as non-theatrical commissions. He also participated writing ten-minute musicals for the ATrain Musicals, Raw Impressions, and FUSE concert theatre group. He has scored three film shorts and participated in the NYU/ASCAP Film Scoring Workshop. Daniel is also a music director, percussionist, arranger and orchestrator.  In addition to that, he works as a music copyist and music educator. Daniel thanks his friends and family for their support and God for everything else. Member of ASCAP and The Dramatist Guild, Inc. He holds a MM in Composition from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.