Tyler Ellis is a member of the School of Dramatic Arts Class of 2020 in which he is earning a Theatre major with a minor in Marketing within the Marshall School of Business. He is thrilled and honored to be a part of this group of artists, and looks forward to the coming years as a part of the MTR family. A Bay Area native, Tyler has acted, designed, directed, marketed, and studied theatre extensively. His favorite roles include Robert in Company (YMTC Bay Area and MTR), Mr. Black in The Wild Party (USC), and George in Sunday in the Park with George (USC). He trained at California State Summer School for the Arts (CSSSA) in 2013 and the Cherubs Program at Northwestern University in 2015. He has worked in New York City for actor Alan Cumming and the New York Musical Festival, and is now at Walt Disney Studios working in Field Marketing. He directed MTR's production of Cabaret (2018), and cannot wait for the season! tylerjosephellis.com
Jamie Salinger (Production Manager)
Jamie Salinger is a member of the USC School of Dramatic Arts' class of 2020, pursuing a BFA in Stage Management. She graduated from Alexander W. Dreyfoos High School of the Arts in West Palm Beach, Florida where she stage managed Thoroughly Modern Millie and Shrek. There, she discovered a passion for both stage and production management that she is thrilled to be realizing as the Production Manager of the Musical Theatre Repertory. Since Jamie’s time with MTR began, she has stage managed Heathers, Edges, and Next to Normal. She has also stage managed collegiate level productions of Eurydice, an MFA New Works Festival, and Mockingbird with USC’s School of Dramatic Arts, as well as professional productions of Sugar and Hallelujah, Baby! with the Musical Theatre Guild. She looks forward to growing alongside the MTR company! More details at jamiesalinger.com.
Jordan Fox (Treasurer)
Jordan Fox is earning a degree in BFA Technical Direction and is excited to be graduating with the class of 2021. He joined theatre in his second year at Irvine High School and became lead Set Designer and Master Carpenter as a junior. Jordan also received two Cappies Commendee & Nominee’s for his work as Set Designer on Brighton Beach Memoirs and Cinderella by Rodgers and Hammerstein. In his first year, he has worked on the development and execution of over 20 productions at USC but the most rewarding have been Game Night (Set Designer), Stage Kiss (Master Carpenter), Tongues & Savage Love (Technical Director), Titus Andronicus (Set Designer and Technical Director), Cabaret (Assistant Technical Director), and the New Works Festival Year 2: Family Riots, Tunnels, and Counting (Student Technical Director). He is ecstatic to be assisting MTR this year and to be a part of such a prestigious group of individuals! Jordankerrfox.com
Beth Yeo (Public Relations)
Beth Yeo is a member of USC’s Class of 2021 pursuing a major in Communication with a minor in Business Administration. Beth’s love for musicals developed following a life-changing trip to Wicked aged 11, after which she went on to play an active role in her school’s Theatre Club during her middle and high school years. More recently, Beth began a theatre blog, The Stage Narrative, combining her love for writing and theatre through reviewing shows and interviewing Broadway and West End actors. She also took on the role of Contributing Editor at BroadwayWorld during her Freshman year abroad in Switzerland, reviewing European touring productions such as The Rocky Horror Show. You can probably find Beth in a theatre or in her room listening to show tunes in her free time. She has loved her time assistant stage managing MTR's productions of Avenue Q and Spring Awakening as well as stage managing Long Story Short, and cannot wait for the remainder of her journey with MTR! www.thestagenarrative.com
Austin Karkowsky (Secretary)
Austin Karkowsky is from Houston, Texas and is a proud member of both the Thornton School of Music and the School of Dramatic Arts, graduating in 2021. As a performer, he has performed all over the country, with some of his favorite credits including Fly: A New Musical, and The Sound of Music Live! on NBC. As a composer, he is proud to say that his original musical, Boy Meets Girl, had its world premiere in London in Fall of 2017, and has additionally had music performed on Sesame Street. With MTR, Austin has appeared on the stage as Moritz (Spring Awakening), in the pit as Music Director (Avenue Q, Long Story Short), and looks forward to a future directing opportunity in the coming school year.
Joy Cheever (Member at Large)
Joy Cheever, Class of 2021, is working towards a BFA in Sound Design at the School of Dramatic Arts. She was first a dancer from the age of three, then shifted to theatre in middle school when she found her true passion wasn’t onstage, but behind the curtain. She fell in love with Sound Design at her High School in Keller, TX, and decided to pursue a career in the field. Joy was introduced to MTR by designing for Avenue Q in Fall 2018,and the rest is history! Outside the Artistic Board, Joy serves as the Theatre Students Association Assistant Marketing Chair and has designed the sound for a multitude of other ISP companies including BNT, ATC, Impulse, and One and All. Joy will be designing this year’s production of The Busybody, and looks forward to designing for more SDA Mainstage productions in the future. Beyond the realm of theatre, Joy has worked for the Marshall School of Business for over a year. When outside of a dim theatre or office, Joy loves to go outdoors, travel, and spend time with friends. This is her first semester serving on the MTR Artistic Board, and she couldn’t be more excited to work with such a talented group of people! www.joycheever.com
Stephen Jung (Member at Large)
Stephen is a rising sophomore of USC’s class of 2022 pursuing a degree in Economics/Mathematics and minors in Music Production and Music Recording. A graduate from Redwood High School in Larkspur, California, Stephen worked at his local theatre company, Ensemble Production Company (EPiC) for all of his high school career. There, he cultivated his love for theatre and the arts, and being a classically trained pianist, he started to volunteer at local theatres by being a rehearsal pianist. Looking for more opportunities in college, Stephen as been involved with every MTR production in his freshman year as Assistant Music Director, Rehearsal Pianist, and as band conductor (Avenue Q, Spring Awakening, Long Story Short). Stephen is extremely excited for the next season of shows, and wants to further prove himself as an asset to his artistic community.
Nick Kassoy (Member at Large)
Nick Kassoy is a member of the USC School of Dramatic Arts’ class of 2022, pursuing a BA in Theatre with minors in music production and cinematic arts. From Glen Rock, New Jersey, Nick graduated from the Academy for Technology and Computer Science at Bergen County Academies, and was also deeply involved in the theatre program. While a senior in high school, he interned with Edward Pierce Studio, serving as the scenic design intern for the Broadway production of Angels in America. Nick has worked as an actor, lighting designer, projection designer, music director, stage manager, orchestrator, and composer, and continues to explore all aspects of theatre. As an actor, favorite credits include Marplot in The Busybody (USC), the Chairman in The Mystery of Edwin Drood (Bergen County Academies), and Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet (Porch Light Productions). He has loved being involved with MTR for Avenue Q (Assistant Lighting Designer), Spring Awakening (Associate Lighting Designer), and Long Story Short (Songwriter, Orchestrator, Lighting Designer), and looks forward to many more productions as a board member!
Zach Manske (Member at Large)
Zach Manske, 20, grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota training in various styles at Woodbury Dance Center. From 2012 to 2013, he played the role of “Billy Elliot” in the second national tour of Billy Elliot the Musical. He is currently majoring in Dance at University of Southern California’s Glorya Kaufman School of Dance. At school, Zach trains with artists such as Jodie Gates, William Forsythe, Fiona Lummis, and more. He also enjoys choreographing at both school and various studios across the nation.
Katie Kivinski (Member at Large)
Katie Kivinski is a junior at USC, pursuing a major in Music Industry. She has a background in classical piano and has completed the California Certificate of Merit program through the highest level, but she developed a love for theatre in high school. President of her school’s International Thespian Society troupe, Katie earned the title of Top 4 Honorable Mention for the Orange County Artist of the Year in Vocal Music. Although she loves to perform and has been featured in lead roles with the Southern Orange Country School of the Arts, she is passionate about music directing and songwriting. Together with her best friend, she founded Varsity Arts Club at her school and created “New Works Night,” an annual event where students can showcase their original work. Her favorite experience as a musician was attending A Cappella Academy, a summer music camp in Los Angeles, and performing with Pentatonix at the Hollywood Bowl. Katie is a proud member of the SoCal VoCals, and she loved performing with them at the 2018 Aca-Open at Carnegie Hall. She was honored to AMD for Cabaret, and she is so excited for the upcoming MTR season!
Cole Slater (Member at Large)
Cole Slater is a current member of the School of Dramatic Arts Class of 2022. He is double majoring in Theatre and French and is beyond excited to be a part of the MTR family. Cole is a multidisciplinary artist and studies many mediums including directing, acting, fashion, and film photography. Some of his acting highlights include Moonface Martin in Anything Goes (Flintridge Prep), Seymour in Little Shop of Horrors (Flintridge Prep), Cornelius in Hello, Dolly! (Flintridge Prep), and Ernst in Spring Awakening (MTR). Professionally, he has performed as TJ in Tommy’s Toyshop (The Lounge Theatre), as a guest performer at Back to Bravo (Alex Theatre), and as a series of characters in invisible theatre projects in Los Angeles. Cole has directed many works including the play Machinal. In addition, he has studied musical theatre over past summers at Tisch New Studio on Broadway, University of Michigan, Interlochen Arts Academy, and Broadway Artists Alliance. He is psyched to be challenged by MTR future productions!
Tata Vivas (Member at Large)
Tata is a member of USC’s Class of 2021, pursuing a double major in Theatre and Narrative Studies. Originally from Venezuela, she somehow ended up in the lovely Winchester, Massachusetts where her passion for the arts flourished. She discovered her love for musical theatre in high school, after having dabbled in dance and choir, and quickly realized she could not live without it. Her USC credits include SDA’s Happy End (Jane), MTR’s Spring Awakening (Thea), SDA’s Sunday in the Park with George (Woman with Baby) and ATC’s Mother Courage (Producer). Tata is thrilled to be a member of this board and looks forward to growing with this community of artists!
What about our alumni? Click here to meet the rest of the MTR family!