Rapahel Schwartzman '11
Raphael Schwartzman has spent his time since graduating from Butler Theatre Department pursuing work in theatre in a variety of forms. From June to September 2011, Raphael spent the summer in Italy working and training with former Butler Theatre Guest Artist in Residence Bernardo Rey; together they conducted personal training sessions in Psycho-Physical Action and created a one-hour solo performance called Woyzeck: Fragments in Solitude, which Raphael performed in Amelia and Pistoia, as well as at the Casa-Laboratorio di Cenci, a workshop retreat center where Raphael participated in an Indian Dance-Theatre intensive with the performance group Milon Mela. Upon his return to the United States, Raphael moved to Chicago, where he has worked as Master/Assistant Electrician, Technical Director, or Scenic Carpenter for such theatre companies as Immediate Theatre, Cock and Bull Theatre, Buzz22 Chicago, Next Theatre, and Paramount Theatre. Raphael has also been auditioning for theatre and film, writing poetry and theatre pieces, and has submitted a proposal to Redtape Theatre's Fresh Eyes Project, a workshop rehearsal process devoted to the development of ensemble-devised theatre. Raphael also teaches for Mad Science, an after-school science program for elementary-age students.
Christopher "Ziggy" Ziegler '11
After graduating in 2011, Christopher joined the Acting Intern Company at Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati for their 2011-2012 season, where he was cast as an understudy in shows such as Ghost-Writer, The Whipping Man, and Pulitzer Prize-winning musical Next to Normal, one of the very first productions of the show at a theatre outside of New York. He also appeared at the 2012 Cincy Fringe Festival. He has recently worked with the Cincinnati Academy and Society of Acting and the Society of American Fight Directors. During his time at Butler he appeared in several Mainstage, Senior, and Student Productions, and worked with theatre companies such as The Phoenix Theatre, NoExit Productions, and PaperStrangers Performance Group in their 2010 National Fringe Festival Tour. His future plans include moving to Chicago to live and work with recent Butler Theatre graduates and to move to London for work in British film, television, and theatre. He is a member of the Equity Membership Candidate Program.
Lindsay Fussell '10
Lindsay is a 2010 graduate from Butler University with a B.A. in Theatre and French. In addition to her work with Butler Theatre, she was able to undertake two internships during her time in college. Both led to employment opportunities after graduating. At Indiana Repertory Theatre, Lindsay served for two seasons as a Production Assistant on 17 productions, earning several weeks as an Equity Membership Candidate. During her first two years with Improv Playhouse, Lindsay choreographed and stage managed several shows including Into the Woods, Beauty and the Beast, and Grease. During her third year, Lindsay was asked to direct and choreograph the company's two musical productions. In the summer of 2012, Lindsay moved to Chicago and will begin work at Steppenwolf Theatre Company as a Stage Management Apprentice for the upcoming season.
Rachel E. Bennett '09
Rachel received her M.A. in Performance Studies at New York University in May 2011. She is currently working on her Ph.D. in Theatre History at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She regularly presents papers at theatre and interdisciplinary conferences. She is currently working on developing her Master's Thesis "Performing Violence: Speech and Image in the Red Army Faction's Revolution" into a journal article.
Michael Burke '09
Graduating with a degree in theatre, Michael Burke is already making his mark on the local and national theatre communities. He has served as assistant to the producing artistic director of the Asolo Repertory Theatre in Sarasota, Fla., and assistant director for Peter Amster's Dracula at the Indiana Repertory Theatre. He was honored with the 2011 Beckmann Emerging Artist Fellowship from the Indianapolis Arts Council. Entrepreneurial by nature, Michael co-founded the Indianapolis theatre company paperStrangers and is the director of marketing for NoExit Performance.
Katie Horwitz '09
After graduating, Katie played Mary Todd Lincoln in Lincoln Upon the Alter of Freedom with Lincoln Amphitheater and then moved to Chicago where she was Friar Lawrence and The Prince in Romeo and Juliet with Babes with Blades. Since then Katie has shifted her focus to directing. She has assistant directed with Indiana Repertory Theatre for Crime and Punishment, Stage Left Theatre for Mother Bear, Farragut North, The Fisherman, andWarped, and Two Pence Shakespeare Theater for As You Like It. She has directed with American Demigods, 20% Theatre Company and Immediacy Theatre in St. Louis, MO. Katie also adapted and directed Much Ado About Nothing for Gorilla Tango Theatre and co-produced/directed The Bacchae with Jason Narvy.
Katherine Van Wyk '09
Katherine Van Wyk was an arts administration student with a particular interest in theatre. Her first stop after graduation was an internship with The Shakespeare Theatre Company in Washington, D.C. She then worked as a special events consultant for projects with the Foundation for the National Archives, Alvin Ailey and other organizations. Katherine has recently accepted a position in corporate and foundation relations at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
Jocelyn Henjum '07
After graduating from Butler in 2007, Jocelyn moved to the Washington, DC area to do a year-long Stage Management internship at The Olney Theatre Center and stayed in the theatre-full area. Jocelyn joined the Actor's Equity Association as a Stage Manager in 2008 and has been working almost exclusively in the field ever since. She has worked at some of the best venues in the city and the country including the Kennedy Center, Fords Theatre, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Imagination Stage, Inc. and Studio Theatre. She has also been privileged to have assisted in special events with the National Endowment for the Arts, the Shakespeare Theatre Company and for Fords Theatre's Grand Reopening.
With the versatile education that she got at Butler, she's also been able to work with the Washington Ballet as well as Maryland Opera Studio and Urban Arias. In 2011, Jocelyn helped found and is currently the Production Manager of The Impossible Theater Company, the only in the area focused on devised work.
Sunny Widmann '06
Sunny Widmann works with cultural organizations from across the U.S. and abroad in her role as Director at National Arts Strategies in Washington, DC. She is also an adjunct faculty member at Drexel University, teaching in the Arts Management Graduate Program. Prior to moving to Washington DC, Sunny served with Peace Corps in Togo, West Africa as a Girls Education and Empowerment volunteer. She also holds a graduate degree in Arts Management from American University, with a focus in cross-cultural communication. Her work has been published in the Journal of Arts Management, Law and Society. Outside of work, Sunny serves on the steering committee for Emerging Arts Leaders DC, practices yoga and enjoys her neighborhood's lively arts and culinary offerings.
Jason Ober '05
After graduating from Butler Jason moved to Chicago and has worked for several theatre companies in the Chicagoland area including: The State, The Side Project, Hubris Production, Red Tape Theatre, Point of Contention, and Blank Line Collective. He did a Click it or Ticket commercial that ran. Jason got married in 2010 and became a proud father on August 16, 2011. Jason currently lives about an hour west of Chicago.
Andy Ahrens '04
Andy Ahrens graduated from Butler in 2004 and is very proud to be among the very prestigious Bulldog alumni. While at Butler, Andy worked with the Indiana Repertory Theatre starring in the Shakespeare classic, Romeo and Juliet. During one of the performances, he caught the eye of a theatrical agent from Chicago who happened to be in attendance. Thus began Andy's journey into the professional world. After graduating, Andy moved to Chicago and performed in many plays for the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, including Hamlet, directed by Terry Hands, Artistic Director of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre. Always considering theatre to be the strongest element to his skill, Andy continued working on stage, but wanted to extend his career into the television and film world. He moved to New York in 2007, taking several film courses and eventually moved to Los Angeles to take a stab at the big leagues. He has worked for such shows as Mercy (NBC), The Chicago Code (FOX) and Chicago Fire, as well as several independent films. His latest achievement is acting alongside Mila Kunis in Lana and Andy Wachowski's latest film JUPITER ASCENDING, released in July 2014. Currently, Andy is producing and starring in a feature length independent film, entitled Dead Draw. He cherishes the love and support that his Butler family gave and is still giving today!
Michael Bachman '04
Michael Bachman graduated in 2004 from the Department of Theatre. He continued his education in Cork, Ireland at the University College Cork where he completed his Masters in Drama and Theatre Studies with specializations in Directing and Theatre in Education. Upon returning to the states, Michael married this diverse educational career by teaching Pre-Kindergarten and then acting as Director of East Tenth United Methodist Children and Youth Center on the near eastside of Indianapolis, where his work in education and the arts was highlighted in Nuvo Newsweekly's "Creating Culture" and in the national publication TIME Magazine's "The Case Against Summer Vacation". After 7 years, Michael transitioned to United Way of Central Indiana where he continues to create and manage early childhood programming. Michael's directing credits include NoExit Performance and the recent Trojan Women staged reading at Butler's Schrott Center for the Arts.
Kate Glasheen '04
Kate graduated from the Central School of Speech and Drama, University of London with Master's Degree in Voice in December 2011. She is the Associate Editor of the Voice and Speech Review by VASTA, and she has continued acting since graduating from Butler.
Ronald Gilliam '03
Originally born in the heart of the Appalachian mountains, Ronald Gilliam graduated from Butler with dual degrees in Theatre and Chinese Language & Culture in 2003.
Shortly after graduating, Ronald joined the Indianapolis Broadway Across America office as head of their subscription sales while continuing his previous arts administration work as an Events Supervisor at Clowes Memorial Hall. During this time Ronald and fellow Butler Theatre Alumni Nicole Gatzimos (2002) began discussing how they could produce their own theatrical work. This joint desire to create new art organically led to the development of NoExit Performance, an experimental theatre company that continues to produce work from Butler theatre graduates. Eventually, Ronald's path would lead to New York City where he completed his MA degree at New York University in Performance Studies. Due to the successes of NoExit combined with his arts administration background, Ronald was recruited by Dances Patrelle, a professional chamber-sized ballet company, upon completion of his degree at NYU. He acted as their Executive Director for almost three years before returning to academia in 2007.
Currently, Ronald is a Doctoral Candidate (ABD) in Asian Theatre at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa where he is conducting research on contemporary Central Asian drama. During 2011-2012 Ronald was a visiting student at the Central Chinese University for Nationalities (Minzu University) Department of Uyghur Language & Literature. He plans to defend his dissertation, "Locating Intangible Culture: Contemporary Manifestations of Uyghur Dramatic Art in Chinese Central Asia," in 2013.
Katie Angel '02
Katie is the founder and CEO of Angel Burlesque -- Indianapolis largest and most theatrically based burlesque company. She has been a Stage Manager at Dance Kaleidoscope since 2002. She has been a stage manager for Gregory Hancock Dance Center. She has stage managed at various other events including: "The Nutcracker" in Little Rock, Arkansas; "Pops Goes Vegas!" in Hartford, Connecticut; the Country Music Expo (95.5 WFMS; 3 years), Central Indiana Business Hall of Fame Awards Ceremony (3 years), NCAA Final Four Salute.
Kelly Baas '02
Kelly has worked with students on autistic spectrum as well as individuals with developmental disabilities. She has performed with DisAbility Project, an all ability level theatre company in St. Louis. Kelly received her M.A. in Counseling Psychology & Expressive Arts Therapy in 2009 from CIIS in San Francisco. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) currently workings as counselor/case manager & utilizing drama, art, writing, and a variety of creative arts with clients with severe mental illness.
Jill Koenen '02
A Midwestern girl at heart, Jill Koenen grew up in St. Louis, earned a degree in Arts Administration, Theatre and Public Relations from Butler University in Indianapolis, and spent her early professional years planning large-scale, high-profile fundraising events for Steppenwolf Theatre Company in Chicago. In 2005, Jill's sense of adventure led her to pursue an opportunity in the charming city by the bay - San Francisco - where she was recruited by Bon Appétit Management Company.
For the past seven years, Jill has served the company in multiple positions event planning, catering, sales, and marketing at the de Young and Legion of Honor Museums, AT&T Ballpark (home of the SF Giants), and ACME Chophouse. In early 2010, she opened two new restaurants (Public House & Mijita) as Director of Marketing & Communications for Bon Appétit & James Beard award winning Chef Traci Des Jardins at AT&T Park. After working at the account level for over 5 years, she was promoted to Regional Marketing Director for Northern California. Through company-wide and regional initiatives, she leads the marketing effort which aims to increase participation, generate revenue, spread awareness of Bon Appétit's sustainability commitments and bring the fun back to food!
After 5pm, she enjoys Yoga/Pilates, cooking, golf, supporting the arts, and shopping for shoes. She currently serves as the chair of the Young Professional Advisory Council for the San Francisco Bay Area chapter of the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Mandy (Keller) Scarborough '02
Mandy received her MBA from Weber State University in 2008. She has worked for Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnatti, Fitton Center for Creative Arts, Cincinnati Opera, and Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park where she was on staff when the theatre received the Tony for the 2003-2004 season. She has performed and taught with French Kiss Fitness and Goddess Arts Academy. Mandy currently performs with Spokane Aeriel Performance Arts. She is married to another Butler Alum, Dave Scarborough and has a 13 month old son. The Scarboroughs currently reside in Spokane Washington.
Dr. Jenny Kokai '01
Dr. Kokai is currently an Assistant Professor at Weber State University in Utah, where she teaches theatre history, playwriting and dramaturgy, theatre education. After graduating magna cum laude with highest honors, double majoring in theatre and philosophy, she obtained an M.A. from Washington University in St. Louis and a Ph.D. from The University of Texas at Austin.
She is currently co-authoring an article with a philosopher, Mary-Beth Willard, on what philosophy can learn from the expressive arts. She has published and presented work from a previous project on women's use of performance as a mode of social and political engagement in the Revolutionary War. Jenny regularly presents at academic conferences like the American Society for Theatrical Research and the Association for Theatre in Higher Education and is an active playwright and director.
Brandy Rodgers '00
Brandy spent several years as Company Manager for the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra's Yuletide Celebration. She spent several years as the Pops and Presentations Coordinator for the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra. Brandy is currently the SPC Manager and Production/Tour Coordinator and the Production Manager for Yuletide Celebration at the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra. She is also independently contracted by orchestras throughout North America to stage manager their more theatrical concerts.
Sarah Snider '00
Originally from small town Salem, IN, Sarah developed her love of costuming while designing multiple main stage productions for Butler University Theatre. After graduating in 2007 with high honors, she began her professional career in wardrobe with Cirque du Soleil assisting with the creation and production of "Viva Elvis" in Las Vegas, NV. Since relocating to New York City she has done wardrobe on various theatre and major motion picture projects including American Ballet Theatre's "Nutcracker" and the 67th Annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall. She is currently dressing the starring role of Christine in Broadway's "Phantom of the Opera" at the Majestic Theatre.
Tavi Stutz '00
Butler University was the perfect spring-board to launch Tavi Stutz into the varied and creative life he has led. After graduating in 2000 with a B.S. in arts administration (theatre) with honors, he worked in New York City at the Roundabout Theater Company (the second largest not-for-profit theater company in the country). He continued his education as an actor focusing on film and TV, and as a dancer at Broadway Dance Center. Tavi enjoyed the benefits of yoga so started a regular practice and also worked with the SITI Company. Later, Tavi studied at Harvard and through this connection was invited to Moscow by the Bolshoi Ballet to train with them and to take gymnastics lessons at Dinamo. He also taught movement to college students at MXAT and to Harvard graduate students. Once his visa ran out, he returned to NYC, continued teaching yoga and auditioned for the Cirque du Soleil. His first contract with Cirque was eight years ago. After his first tour, he moved to Los Angeles to reconnect with his passion for acting and writing. He has appeared in many commercials and films, though you would never recognize him as his face is often covered in make-up or he is doubling as someone else! He has written a book, a full-length feature film, and two TV shows. This constant struggle between circus, writing, and acting is still pulling at his heartstrings and hopefully one day soon they will all exist in harmony.