Steven Hess A recent transplant to Mill Valley, Steve lives with his wife and son just a few blocks away on Miller Avenue! He took the helm as Youth Program Director in the summer of 2011, after working as the head of the MYP Summer Camp and serving as director for MYP’s productions of Les Miserables, Sound of Music and A Storybook Christmas. Steve brings a wealth of theatrical training, teaching, directing and performance experience to the post. He studied acting in New York City at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy. He then worked at Wagner College in Staten Island, where he taught acting and directed major productions. Steve founded 23 Elephants Theatre Company with his wife Bidalia, where he has directed Othello, Marisol and several original productions. Steve’s recent bay area performances have included Mr. Bumble in Berkeley Playhouse’s production of Oliver!, the Proprietor in Ray of Light Theatre Company’s Assassins and Dwight/God in Jerry Springer the Opera, also with Ray of Light, for which he was nominated for a BATCC Award for best supporting actor in a musical.
Bidalia E. Albanese (Choreographer/Instructor) is a performer, choreographer and director. Born and raised in New York, she trained at the School of American Ballet, the High School Of Performing Arts and graduated from the Guildford School of Acting in England. Her directing credits include Private Wars and The Unspeakable Act which premiered at The New York Fringe Festival. Bidalia's choreography has been seen at Guildford, Fullerton College, Wagner College, and The Hell Festival in NYC. She has performed in the UK west end, NYC (off off Broadway) and all around the States.
June Cooperman (Choreographer) has been choreographing musical theater for the past eight years, including MYP's production of The Music Man and several Mill Valley Middle School musical productions. She is happy pursuing eclectic dances interests, ranging from ballet to ballroom to Bulgarian, as well as tap dance and jazz. Prior to her life as a mother, choreographer, and dancer, June was a primary care physician in San Francisco and Boston.
Sandra Rae Davies (Class Instructor) is an improviser, actress, dancer, singer and teacher. She has been instructing children and adults all over the bay area. She has presented her talents to countless audiences for over twenty years. Ms. Davies formed her own improv troupe, "The YeaSayers" after completing two years of theatrical studies at the College of Marin.
Jonathan Fadner (Musical Director) is a performer of classical, jazz, and folk music. As a performer he has been seen singing and playing in venues from San Diego to San Francisco area such as the California Center for the Arts in Escondido, the Handlery Hotel, and every street corner and park in between. More recently, Jonathan was musical director for Berkeley Playhouse’s productions of Annie, Pinnochio and Pirates of Penzance, for which he also wrote the orchestrations. He graduated with honors from UC Berkeley's music department. Jonathan is also a composer whose works have been performed in the San Diego area, as well as the bay area. A long time choral conductor, vocal coach, and music teacher, Jonathan truly loves what he does.
Ben Malkevitch (Musical Director) Ben Malkevitch is equally at home as a music director, vocal coach, and collaborative pianist in the worlds of opera and musical theater. He has music directed several shows for The Menlo School and Notre Dame de Namur University and has put together productions ranging from Oklahoma! to Spring Awakening and from Guys and Dolls to Songs for a New World. Mr. Malkevitch has collaborated with Lamplighters Music Theatre, Livermore Valley Opera, and BASOTI. Last fall, he had the opportunity to perform Beethoven's Choral Fantasy with the Livermore-Amador Symphony. Mr. Malkevitch is music director at First Congregational Church of San Francisco and Assistant Conductor of Bella Musica, a chorus based in North Berkeley. He holds a Masters' Degree in Collaborative Piano from the Cleveland Institute of Music.
Rebecca Martin (Director/Class Instructor) is a Bay Area AEA actress, working for 20 years on stage and in film, voice-over and commercials. She has taught and directed in youth drama programs throughout the Bay Area and recently created and began teaching her own class, “Discovering the Actor Within You”: an amalgamation of acting technique and personal empowerment. She is a recent graduate of the MFA program at The National Theater Conservatory in Denver, CO. Favorite roles include: Elmire in Tartuffe, Hamlet in Hamlet, Sheila in HAIR The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical and in her one woman show combining the writings of Virginia Woolf and Portia from The Merchant of Venice. Bay Area credits include work with Fools Fury and California Shakespeare Theater. She is a graduate of Middlebury College and believes in the advancement of our local art scene here in Mill Valley.
Jessica Nicholson (A Cappella Ensemble Director) has taught vocal music for the past 12 years. After receiving a Bachelor of Music from the University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music, Jessica began her career teaching music to students of all ages, both privately and in the classroom. Currently, Jessica is the choral director at Mill Valley Middle School. Over the past 10 years, she has built the choirs from the ground up, into a large, award-winning program serving over 500 students. Her choirs consistently receive superior ratings at competitions and festivals. She also works extensively with teenagers as a vocal music director for local musical theater productions and variety shows. Jessica is the recipient of a Golden Bell Award for outstanding educators, and the Terwilliger Award for teaching excellence.
Anna Smith is a local teaching artist with Berkeley Playhouse, Cal Shakes, Youth Musical Theatre Center, and is a guest artist with Redwood High School. Also an actor, Anna has been seen with several Bay Area companies including Bay Area Children's Theatre, Ray of Light Theatre, and currently with New Conservatory Theatre Center in San Francisco. Thrilled to be working with 142 Throckmorton, Anna looks forward to working with the young talent in Mill Valley.