Each summer, Camp Shakespeare Teaching Artists create a unique curriculum aimed at optimizing students’ physical, intellectual and artistic development. All Teaching Artists are classically trained professional actors and educators.
The energy and fervor of the faculty is one of the things I value and love best about the camp. They inspire you, and their excitement rubs off on you and makes you want to dive in.
Sarah Hirsch, Camper
Samantha Wyer, Director of Education – Samantha K. Wyer was appointed Director of Education of Shakespeare Theatre Company in December 2010, where she provides vision and direction for STC’s School, Community Engagement, Training and Audience Enrichment Programs whose core purpose is to offer dynamic avenues of exploration that challenge individuals to seize the ideas contained in classic texts and to find the union between classic theatre and modern relevancy. Previously, Ms Wyer served as Director of Education/ Associate Artistic Director at Arizona Theatre Company for thirteen seasons, where she led the creation of the education mission, department staffing design and development of 80% of new programming during her term. In partnership with government, educational and social agencies, she created over 450 education and community enrichment activities throughout Arizona while serving as a passionate ambassador and community liaison for arts education. Under her leadership, ATC received the Outstanding Arts Education Organization award from Tucson Pima Arts and Business Council. Ms. Wyer has been a grants panelist and guest speaker for arts organizations including Theatre Communications Group, Arizona Commission on the Arts, Tucson Pima Arts Council, Maricopa Partnership for Arts and Culture and West Valley Arts Council and has taught and directed for University of Missouri, Arizona State University and University of Arizona. In 2007, Ms. Wyer was awarded the Buffalo Exchange Arts Award by the Community Foundation of Southern Arizona. Samantha is also a proud member of the Society of Directors and Choreographers union and partial directing credits include The Two Gentlemen of Verona, A Streetcar Named Desire, A Moon for the Misbegotten, To Kill a Mockingbird, Three Sisters, I Am My Own Wife, Noises Off!, Permanent Collection and Wit.
Brent Stansell, Camp Director, is the Training Programs Coordinator at the Shakespeare Theatre Company where he has been a teaching artist for over five years. He has also taught at The George Washington University, American University, Montgomery College, and The Catholic University of America, and as an affiliated teaching artist with the Folger Theatre and Round House Theatre, where he had been a camp teacher and administrator for seven summers. Brent has worked as an actor with several DC companies including Rorschach Theatre and the National Player’s Tour 55 out of the Olney Theatre Center. He has an MFA in Dramaturgy from Brooklyn College and a BA in Dramatic Literature and in English with honors from The George Washington University.
Jim Gagne is the Resident Teaching Artist for the Shakespeare Theatre Company. Acting credits include Jack the Ticket Ripper (Georgetown Theatre Company), We Won't Pay, We Won't Pay (The Hub Theatre), Heart of a Dog, Fool for Love (Spooky Action Theater), The Nature and Purpose of the Universe (Circle of Fools), Cymbeline (Dog and Pony DC), Ninja Motorcycle Babes (Notorious Women), One Man’s War (Triad Theatre), Uncle Vanya(Everyman Theatre), St. Joan, Romeo and Juliet (Olney Theatre Center), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Our Town (National Players Tour 55). As a teacher Jim has worked with a wide variety of students ranging from kindergartners to senior citizens. Jim received a BFA from The Hartt School at The University of Hartford.
Affiliated Teaching Artists
Carolyn Agan is an equity actress and teaching artist in the DC area. Recent credits include Belle in A Christmas Carol and Olive in The 25th Annual Putnum County Spelling Bee at Ford's Theatre. She has also performed locally with The Shakespeare Theatre, The Kennedy Center, Olney Theatre Center, Theatre J, Signature Theatre, WSC Avant Bard, Keegan Theatre, and Adventure Theatre MTC where she will be playing the title role in Pinkalicious the Musical this summer. Carolyn is an affiliated teaching artist with STC and Ford's Theatre. She has been working with students in theatre since 2005 previously with the Fairfax County Park Authority, FCPS, Smithsonian Associates, and Pumpkin Theatre. She studied Theatre for Youth at Shenandoah Conservatory.
Wyckham Avery is the Theatre Director for The New School of Northern Virginia. As a conspirator with dog & pony dc, Wyckham directed Separated at Birth, PUNCH!--that's the way we do it, and Cymbeline, and performed in COURAGE, Beertown, and A Killing Game. She is currently developing a new solo show, Just Sing Me a Song, based on the life and music of Ola Belle Reed. She performed in Woolly Mammoth's Full Circle by Charles Mee, directed by Michael Rohd, Dead City and The Skin of Our Teeth with Rorschach Theatre, The Taming of the Shrew at the Shakespeare Theatre Company, the Capitol Fringe Festival in her solo clown show, Cordelia's Fool and as Hecuba in Referendum/PAC's Trojan Women. She directed [eureka], a solo physical comedy show by Patrick Bussink for Forum Theatre. She performs and teaches clowning, commedia dell'arte, and physical theatre in the DC area. She is an affiliated Teaching Artist with the Shakespeare Theatre Company and the Folger Shakespeare Library. Wyckham received her MFA in acting from the Catholic University of America and trained at the Dell' Arte International School of Physical Theatre and the New England Center for Circus Arts. Wyckham resides in the Mount Rainier Artists Lofts.
Dan Crane been an affiliated teaching artist with Shakespeare Theatre Company since 2006. He is also a professorial lecturer at The George Washington University and Howard University, and a teaching artist at Folger Shakespeare Library. Dan is a company member with Taffety Punk Theatre Company in Washington, DC, and co-founder of The Enlightenment Theatre Project in Williamsburg, VA. DC area acting credits include the Shakespeare Theatre Company in Romeo and Juliet, Richard III, and The Beaux Stratagem, Folger Theatre in Cyrano, Hamlet and The Winter’s Tale, and Taffety Punk Theatre Company in Oxygen, The Rape of Lucrece, Twelfth Night, and Bloody Poetry. Dan received two 2012 Helen Hayes Award nominations for his work in Cyrano at Folger Theater and Hub Theatre’s Birds of a Feather. Other regional acting credits include work with companies across the United States, including Baltimore Shakespeare Festival (as Hamlet), Idaho Shakespeare Festival, PCPA Theaterfest and Portland Center Stage to name a few. Dan directed Romeo & Juliet for the Shakespeare Theatre Company’s Young Company, which performed at the Festival International de Companias de Teatro Juveniles in Parla, Spain. He trained at the Pacific Conservatory for the Performing Arts, holds a BFA from Ithaca College and an MFA from the Academy for Classical Acting at The George Washington University.
Jon Harvey has been teaching with the Shakespeare Theatre Company since 2010. He received his Master of Arts in Shakespeare and Theatre through the University of Birmingham’s Shakespeare Institute in Stratford-Upon-Avon, England. He has also taught with the Virginia Shakespeare Festival, worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company, and studied with the American Shakespeare Center. He is a published critic in the academic journal Cahiers Élisabéthains. Jon is also a theatre Freelance Photographer in DC.
Brit Herring is a long time theatre professional. He received his M.F.A. from Shakespeare Theatre Company's Academy for Classical Acting at the George Washington University, where he studied with some of the nation's top instructors for Shakespeare, including Michael Kahn, STC's long time Artistic Director. As a young man, he spent two summers with The British American Theatre Institute, training with acting professionals from The Royal Shakespeare Company. In New York, he has appeared off Broadway at Soho Playhouse and at The Lion Theater on Theatre Row. In the D.C. area he has worked with Shakespeare Theatre Company, The Kennedy Center, Washington Stage Guild, Quotidian Theatre Company and Bay Theatre Company.
Paul Edward Hope is an actor, teaching artist and fight director based in the DC metro area. As an actor, he has toured internationally with The Kennedy Center, worked Off- Broadway with Red Bull Theatre and The York Theatre Company, and has performed regionally with The Shakespeare Theatre Company, The Kennedy Center, The Utah Shakespeare Festival, The Orlando Shakespeare Theatre, The Baltimore Shakespeare Festival, The Oregon Cabaret Theatre and Rep Stage in Columbia, MD to name a few. He is an Affiliated Teaching Artist with the Shakespeare Theatre Company (where he has directed over 16 student productions as part of Camp Shakespeare), and works frequently with the Folger Shakespeare Library where he is a Master Swordsman. The MD Theatre Guide Reader’s Pole recently named him Best Actor in a supporting role for his performance as Robert in BOEING BOEING at Rep Stage. He is a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association and a MFA graduate of The Shakespeare Theatre Company Academy for Classical Acting at the George Washington University (ACA).
Chelsea Mayo is currently understudying Cecily and Gwendolen in STC's The Importance of Being Earnest. Since moving to Washington, D.C., she has performed with local companies including Chesapeake Shakespeare Company, Annapolis Shakespeare Company, Idly Bent, The Federal Theatre Project, and Pallas Theatre Collective, where she is a company member. She has taught students grades K-12 through her work at CSC, Lola's Laboratory, and Creative Kids. In addition to acting and teaching, Chelsea has designed props for productions at 1st Stage and WSC-Avant Bard. She holds a B.A. in Theatre from Vanderbilt University.
Stephen Michel is a DC native and a former intern at Camp Shakespeare. He studied theater at Hamilton College, and has a Masters Degree in Education from Bank Street College in New York. He has worked in many educational theater settings, at the primary, secondary, and college level. Stephen is experienced in stage combat and has trained with the Society of American Fight Directors. Currently, Stephen is a 6th grade classroom teacher at an area independent school.
Nafeesa Monroe has been a professional film, television and stage actress for over twenty years in Los Angeles, New York, and DC. She is a graduate of The Meisner School of Acting and received her MFA from The Shakespeare Theatre Company's Academy for Classical Acting at The George Washington University. Some film & television credits include: I’m Through with White Girls, Jamie Foxx Show, and The Bold and The Beautiful. A few of her theatre credits include: Hello Herman (Off-Off Broadway); Oliver & Peter Pan (TheatreWorks, CA); Company Policy (Pipedream Prods, CA); The Journey to Becoming (Edinburgh Fringe Festival). As a spoken word artist, Nafeesa has opened for Jewel, appeared on HBO’s Def Poetry, and performed alongside bestselling author Neale Donald Walsch. Nafeesa is also a mastered martial artist and works as a fight choreographer and stage combat instructor.
Victoria Reinsel is a classically trained actor, director, and teaching artist who has acted and/or taught at a number of local and regional theatres including American Shakespeare Center, Shakespeare Theatre Company, Orlando Shakespeare Theatre, Imagination Stage, Constellation Theatre Company, Taffety Punk Theatre Company, Folger Shakespeare Theatre, Maryland Shakespeare Festival, Chesapeake Shakespeare Company, and Encore Stage & Studio. She has taught additionally through Lola’s Laboratory, Creative Kids, Trax, and the Institute of Reading Development, and has guest lectured at Georgetown University and Eastern Mennonite University. In 2011, she co-founded Brave Spirits Theatre. Victoria holds a MFA and M.Litt in Shakespeare in Performance with a concentration in acting from Mary Baldwin College in partnership with the American Shakespeare Center, and a BA in Theatre/Literature from Marlboro College.
Melissa Richardson is a director, stage manager, and teaching artist. She has taught children and adults at all levels throughout the DC Metro Area. She has directed several youth theatre productions, and she also works with students to create and perform original, ensemble-written plays. She has been a Teaching Artist with the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Education through the Arts since 2005. In this capacity, she partners with early childhood classroom teachers to incorporate the arts into daily learning. She wrote an original, ten-minute play that she performed for preschool audiences for the Institute’s Small Bites program and served on the STEM Science Task Force to develop science and engineering curriculum. She has worked with the Heyday Players, Round House Theatre’s acting troupe for senior citizens, for the past five years. She has also taught drama to students from preschool through high school with Arena Stage. Adventure Theatre, and Lenore Blank Kelner and Co. Melissa is passionate about storytelling, whether from children’s literature, folktales from around the world, or stories created with children on the spot. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Directing from the Carnegie Mellon University School of Drama.
Eva Wilhelm holds an MFA in Classical Acting from the Shakespeare Theatre's Academy for Classical Acting at The George Washington University. Locally, she has appeared in productions at Folger Theatre, Studio Theatre, Maryland Shakespeare Festival, Baltimore Shakespeare Festival, Faction of Fools and Taffety Punk Theatre Company. In Chicago, she worked with Court Theatre, Northlight Theatre, Shattered Globe and Stage Left, among many others. She is currently an adjunct professor at Trinity Washington University, and an Associated Artist with Faction of Fools, as well as a book narrator for both Audible.com and the Library of Congress.
(Teaching Artists are subject to change without notice)