Alumni Marquee 2022-23

Classes of 1960s & 1970sClass of 1980s
 Class of 1990sClass of 2000s
 Class of 2010s Class of 2020s

Classes of 1960s & 1970s

Swoosie Kurtz ’68 was most recently seen on the FOX series Call Me Kat alongside fellow SDA alum, Michael Sturgis BA ’16.

Cinda Lucas BA ’70 appeared as Ginny in Love, Loss, and What I Wore at the Patio Playhouse in Escondido, California.

LeVar Burton ’76 received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences at their new Children’s and Family Emmy Awards this Fall. LeVar served as the Grand Marshall for the 2022 Rose Parade.

Andy Tennant BA ’77 will direct the upcoming thriller Unit 234.

Steve Cuden BA ’78 produces and hosts StoryBeat with Steve Cuden, a weekly podcast that explores the creative processes of artists. Guests have included Bryan Cranston, fellow SDA alum Andy Tennant, Karen Ziemba and more.

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Class of 1980s

Michael Michetti BFA ’80 directed Uncle Vanya by Anton Chekhov at the Pasadena Playhouse. The production featured fellow SDA alum Sabina Zuniga Varela MFA ’11, and Meredith O’Gwynn BFA ’16 served as the stage manager.

Elizabeth Wong BA ’80 wrote the eco-comedy Space Nunz of the Rescue Mainframe which premiered October 28 in New York, and
was commissioned & produced by Hook & Eye Theater.

Daryl Hannah ’81 directed the film BARN, which documented the recording process of the Neil Young album of the same title.

Forest Whitaker ’82 starred as August Bolowill in Extrapolations and is set to star in the upcoming animated adaptation of Gossamer. He reprised his role as Saw Gerrera in the series Andor on Disney+. Additionally, Whitaker was awarded the honorary Palme d’Or at the 75th Festival de Cannes.

Tate Donovan BFA ’85 was seen as John Hammond in the 2021 biographical drama film Respect about the life of Aretha Franklin.

Frank Ferrante BA ’85 starred in the full-length television special Frank Ferrante’s Groucho, which appeared on public television stations across the nation.

Kyra Sedgwick ’85 directed the film Space Oddity (her directorial debut), which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival.

Edward Haynes, Jr. BFA ’86 was named as a member of the USITT’s newly formed Distinguished Scenic Designers Forum. The forum is a group of prominent, late-career scenic designers who are dedicated to the improvement of the field through volunteer mentoring and other services.

Mark Spatny BFA ’87 served as the VFX Producer for Amazon’s The Peripheral and in 2021 served as VFX Supervisor for Paramount Picture’s Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins and HBO’s In Treatment.

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Class of 1990s

Timothy Omundson BFA ’91 played Lassiter in the television film Psych 3: This is Gus.

Tess Thompson BFA ’91 is a USA Today bestselling author who recently released her forty-seventh work of fiction, The Wordsmith.

Edgar Landa BA ’92 directed an outdoor production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Off Square Theatre/Thin Air Shakespeare in Jackson Hole, WY. The show included MFA ’23 candidates Emily Arrancio (Hermia) and Alexander Prout (Lysander). He staged fights, gags and stunts for The Play That Goes Wrong for The Theatre Group and choreographed physical action/fights for 2:22 A Ghost Story at the Ahmanson.

Anthony Sparks BFA ’94 has joined the second season of Bel-Air as Executive Producer. Sparks is a 2022 Humanitas Prize Nominee for drama teleplay writing for penning the episode “May 27, 2020.” Sparks is the recipient of the 2022 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Drama alongside fellow producers Oprah Winfrey & Ava DuVernay for the fifth and sixth seasons of Queen Sugar.

Patrick T. Gorman BA ’95 is the writer of the critically-acclaimed comedy play Star Wars in 30 Minutes which performed a one-week run in the Garry Marshall Theatre.

Mykle McCoslin BA ’96 was re-elected as the SAG-AFTRA Houston-Austin Local President. She also starred in Paramount Pictures’ action-thriller Little Dixie with Frank Grillo and Eric Dane.

Danny Strong BA ’96 received the Peabody Award, USC Scripter Award and others for his work as a writer and executive producer of the Hulu series Dopesick. Additionally, Danny was nominated for two Emmy Awards for his work on Dopesick, including directing for limited anthology series or movie and writing for limited anthology series or movie.

T.J. Thyne BFA ’97 starred in the role of Gordy Willis in the Paramount Plus original biographical drama miniseries The Offer.

Penelope Lowder BA ’99 and Pia Shah MFA ’13 debuted works at the Center Theatre Group’s L.A. Writers’ Workshop Festival in September as a part of a historic all-women cohort of writers.

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Class of 2000s

Eric Ladin BA ’01 had featured roles in Season 4 of Ozark on Netflix, the feature film Where the Crawdads Sing and in the series, We Own the Night.

Stark Sands BFA ’01 stars as Shakespeare in the Broadway production of & Juliet. Stark also starred in the Berkeley Rep world premiere of Swept Away by John Logan. Fellow SDA alum Alice Pollitt BFA ’15 served as the stage manager.

JP Karliak BA ’03 is a voice actor who recently voiced characters in Spidey and His Amazing Friends, The Boss Baby: Back in the Crib and
Madagascar: A Little Wild.

Patrick J. Adams BFA ’04 starred with Jesse Williams and Jesse Tyler Ferguson in the Broadway revival of Take Me Out, which won
the 2022 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play.

Jennifer Wheeler Kahn BFA ’04 founded Scenery Bags, a sustainable company that takes theatre leftovers and turns them into accessories.
In her company’s first collegiate collaboration, Wheeler-Kahn created envelope clutches from the blue velour curtain that hung in USC’s Bing
Theatre from 2005 to 2018.

Adam Ray BFA ’05 portrayed Jay Leno in Hulu’s Pam and Tommy and stars as Vince McMahon in NBC’s Young Rock. Adam recently joined the cast of Kumail Nanjiani’s Hulu drama Welcome to Chippendales.

Ryan Eggold BFA ’06 who starred as Dr. Max Goodwin in NBC’s New Amsterdam, will be seen with fellow SDA alum Sophia Bush ’03 in
the upcoming feature film, Junction.

Shiloh Goodin BA ’06 performed in the ensemble of the critically acclaimed Broadway musical, Paradise Square.

Michael Schwartz BFA ’06 wrote the film short Bite Size for Hulu, produced by Digital Studio/Disney.

Boni B. Alvarez MFA ’07 wrote the play Apartment Living, which received its premiere with the Playwrights’ Arena and Skylight Theatre Company.

Deborah Ann Woll BFA ’07 appeared as Katherine in The Taming of the Shrew at The Old Globe.

Erica Dasher BA ’08 is an understudy on Broadway in Tom Stoppard’s Leopoldstadt.

Jimmie Fowlie BFA ’08 is a writer on Season 48 of Saturday Night Live.

Griffin Behm BFA ’09 was the lighting director for the 2022 Super Bowl at SoFi Stadium. Griffin’s team designed the experiences for the tunnel, field elements for the player introductions as well as programming for the stadium’s lighting system throughout the game.

Stephen Edlund BA ’09 served as the associate director for Broadway’s Mrs. Doubtfire.

Briga Heelan BA ’09 starred as Cinderella in the Britney Spears Jukebox Musical Once Upon a One More Time which premiered at Shakespeare Theatre Company.

Jonathan Langley BA ’09 wrote and directed the play, Still Awake, for the Hollywood Fringe Festival. The play also featured SDA alumnae Elizabeth Pye BA ’11 and Natalie Hurt BA ’21 and received a Hollywood Encore Producers’ Award.

Mary Kate Wiles BA ’09 voices Vicky in the live action reboot of The Fairly Oddparents: Fairly Odder on Paramount+.

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Class of 2010s

McKinley Belcher III MFA ’10 starred in the six-episode HBO miniseries We Own the City, and also appeared as Happy Loman in the Broadway revival of Death of a Salesman.

Casey Dolkas BA ’10 serves as NeueHouse’s Executive Director of Business Development and assisted in launching the artist series Sunset Sounds.

Jesse Einstein BA ’10 was seen in the television mini-series Pam and Tommy on Hulu.

Ellen Haun BA ’10 joined fellow SDA alumni Brie Carter BA ‘10 and Julia Mania BFA ‘13 in IAMA Theatre Company’s Untitled Baby Play.

Mark Jacobson BA ’11 appeared in the Lifetime Movie The 12 Days of Christmas Eve.

Jonathan Muñoz-Proulx BA ’11 was named the Artistic Director of the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Lily Tomlin/Jane Wagner Cultural Arts

Karan Soni BA ’11 stars in the film Four Samosas by Ravi Kapoor.

Erin Anderson BFA ’12 was nominated for two 2022 Emmy Awards, including Outstanding Lighting Design/Lighting Direction For A Variety Series and Outstanding Lighting Design/Lighting Direction For A Variety Special.

Larkin Bell BA ’12 starred in a national State Farm commercial.

Alanna Darby BA ’12 recently completed a run as Drusilla in Kate Hamill’s Dracula at the Actors Theatre of Louisville. She was also seen in an all-TGNC production of As You Like It at the La Jolla Playhouse.

Giselle Gilbert BA ’12 served as a producer on Give Me An A, a feature-length anthology inspired by the overturn of Roe v. Wade.

Pete Ploszek MFA ’12 starred as Abraham Lincoln in the new play Lavender Men, a queer reimagining of the life of Lincoln.

Manuel Prieto BFA ’12 was named Director of Education for the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts.

Jon Rudnitsky BFA ’12 appeared in the American musical comedy-drama television show The Big Leap on Fox.

D.J. Blickenstaff BFA ’13 was cast as an understudy for four roles in the Geffen Playhouse production of the West Coast premiere of The Inheritance: Part 1 & Part 2.

Julia Manis BFA ’13 starred in The Road Theatre Company production of According to the Chorus.

Madhuri Shekar MFA ’13 is the playwright of the critically-acclaimed production Queen, which was produced as a part of a partnership between the National Asian American Theatre Company and the Long Wharf Theatre.

Mick Torres BA ’13 has been cast in the role of Officer Miller in the Jordan K. Paul film Animals.

Kendall Johnson MFA ’14 was a recurring guest star on the Amazon Prime series A League of Their Own.

David Mandell BA ’14 saw his short film BOYS earn Best Picture Short at the Mammoth Film Festival.

James Morosini BA ’14 wrote and starred in the feature film I Love My Dad. The film took home the Top Narrative Prize at 2022 SXSW.

Katie Porter BA ’14 appeared as Armelia in the California Center for the Arts Escondido production of Ain’t Misbehavin’.

Pia Shah MFA ’14 performed as Mercedes in the play A Seam at the Geffen Playhouse as part of The Writers’ Room Reading Series.

Colin Woodell BFA ’14 starred in the series The Continental now available on Peacock.

Tonatiuh BA ’14 is set to star in the Netflix original thriller Carry On.

Grace Anaclerio BA ’15 was part of the writing team that won Outstanding Writing Team For Daytime Non-Fiction Series for their
work on Ellen.

Miles Fowler BA ’15 starred in the Los Angeles premiere of Sanctuary City at the Pasadena Playhouse.

Jay Lee BA ’15 is a series regular on Season 2 of CSI Las Vegas.

Veronica Long BFA ’15 was seen in the recurring role of Manuela on the EPIX television series Billy the Kid.

Vance Lovett BFA ’15 received Best Actor in a Leading Role at the Universe Multicultural Film Festival for the film The Argument.

Daniel Rashid BA ’15 appeared in the Artists at Play/A Noise Within production of Marabella alongside fellow SDA alum Danny Breslin BFA ’21. Additionally, Rashid played Benny on Season 4, Episode 3 of Atlanta on Fox/Hulu.

Madigan Stehly BFA ’15 received two nominations for the 2022 Emmy Awards for Outstanding Lighting Design/Lighting Direction For A Variety Special.

Cicely Breaux BFA ’16 wrote and starred in the short film The Bathtub. The film was directed by fellow SDA alum Gabriela Ortega BFA ’17.

Bella Hicks BA ’16 is an ensemble member for the national tour of Waitress, as well as the understudy for the character Dawn.

Jinwoo Jung MFA ’16 joined the cast of KPOP on Broadway at Circle in the Square. The production also featured Trojans Kate Mina Lin (SDA student), Sasha Bartol BM ’18, Sarah Hahm BA ’19 and Karlie Teruya BA ’21.

Shane Paul McGhie BFA ’16 appeared as a lead in the Suretone Pictures-Lionsgate horror film Creepers. Additionally, McGhie joined the cast of the upcoming mystery drama series Poker Face on Peacock.

Ashley Morton BFA ’16 played Paulette Bonafonté in the 2022-23 national tour of Legally Blonde: The Musical.

Victoria Pearlman BA ’16 directed the Pacific Resident Theatre production of Women in Jeopardy, which starred fellow SDA graduate Parker Huseby BFA ’18.

Tiffany Kim Stevens BA ’16 released a short film concept Discontent, which made its rounds in the festival circuit, including the 2022 Apex Film Awards and the 2022 San Francisco Indie Short Film Festival. The feature film version titled The Doctrine of Discontent is set to shoot in May.

Michael Sturgis BA ’16 received an LA Drama Critics Circle award for his work in The Echo Theatre Company’s Poor Clare.

Lamar Usher BA ’16 starred in the short film, On the Line, which premiered at the Dave Brown Indie Night Film Festival.

Inda Craig-Galván MFA ’17 premiered the original work A Hit Dog Will Holler at the Skylight Theatre Company.

Taubert Nadalini BA ’17 directed eight performances of the play Cock at the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Davidson/Valentini Theatre. The play also featured SDA alumna Annika Chavez BA ’18.

Gabriela Ortega BFA ’17 was selected as one of the ten writers/directors of the 2021 Rising Voices fellowship created in partnership with Lena Waithe’s Hillman Grad Productions and Indeed. Her short film Huella was an official selection of the 2022 Sundance Film Festival and is being turned into a feature film. Ortega was recently named one of Disney+ Launchpad’s short film directors and is taking great care to tell inclusive stories on screen.

Zachary Roozen BFA ’17 stars in the Tubi original Romeo and Juliet Killers.

Jonathan von Mering BFA ’17 joined the Broadway tour of Fiddler on the Roof for two years, going on to play principal roles on four television shows (Julia, Law & Order, The Flight Attendant, FBI) and two feature films since. He also had roles in the major video game franchises Final Fantasy and Call of Duty.

Simon Chau BFA ’18 stage managed a day/nighttime atmospheric show in Qatar as part of the 2022 World Cup. He also served in a show caller position for the opening and closing ceremonies of the Winter FISU World University Games in Lake Placid.

Justin Chien BFA ’18 was cast as the lead role of Charles Sun on The Brothers Sun for Netflix alongside Michelle Yeoh.

Aneesha Madhock BA ’18 starred in the 2022 film Bully High directed by Bill McAdams Jr.

Eric Yamil Cruz MFA ’18 performed as Phil in the Bella Artes de Santurce production of the musical On Your Feet.

Gabriel Leyva MFA ’19 starred in the film of Without Prescription, which premiered at SXSW.

Manny Spero BFA ’19 appeared in the summer blockbuster Thor: Love and Thunder.

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Class of 2020s

Amanda L. Andrei MFA ’20 was awarded the 2022 Jane Chambers Award for Feminist Playwrighting for her play Mama, I Wish I Were Silver. It had a staged reading directed by Christine Young at the Association for Theatre in Higher Education 45th Conference and featured Eden Sabolboro, Jasmine Rivera, and Heather Raffo.

Brianna Devons BA ’20 directed, wrote and co-produced the screenplay of On the Line, the short film which premiered at the Dave Brown Indie Night Film Festival held at The Chinese Theatre.

Brent Grimes MFA ’20 starred in Echo Theater Company’s production of Hooded, Or Being Black For Dummies. Directed by SDA faculty member Ahmed Best, the production also included the talents of many SDA alumni including Jalen K. Stewart MFA ’21, Charrell Mack MFA ’21, Alysha Grace Bermudez BFA ’19 and Danielle Jaramillo BA ’21, among others.

Jacob KJ Dawson BA ’20 served as the show creative lead for Signals, a Sci-Fi Immersive Experience at the Hollywood Fringe Festival.

Ben Hirschhorn BFA ’20 starred in the West Coast premiere of Trayf at the Geffen Playhouse. Additionally, Hirschhorn directed the short film, Goggles.

Nona Parker Johnson MFA ’20 appears as Carmen “Nova” Riley in Law & Order: Organized Crime.

Jamie Salinger BFA ’20 served as the sub-ASM on Broadway’s The Lion King, a rehearsal SM on MJ. She also worked as PA on the musical, Kimberly Akimbo.

Steven Vargas BA ’20 is an arts reporter for the Los Angeles Times. Prior to joining the staff, he served as Entertainment and Arts intern for the publication.

Maria Zhang BA ’20 will appear as Suki in the upcoming live-action Netflix remake of Avatar: The Last Airbender.

Adi Dixit BFA ’21 starred as “Pi” in the Boston A.R.T. Adaptation of Life of Pi.

Kristian Flores BFA ’21 inked a deal with Innovative after sparking a bidding war between agencies. He currently stars in the Paramount+ drama series School Spirits.

Lorena Gonzalez MFA ’21 starred in the world premiere of the docu-play Mother Sisters, which performed at Echo Theater Company.

Rickey Orr BA ’21 is currently enrolled in the MFA in Theatre Management and Producing program at Columbia University and was also accepted into the joint JD/MFA program. He is the former Operations Fellow for the Black Theatre Coalition/Broadway Across America Fellowship and interned at Daryl Roth Productions/DR Theatrical Management.

Dylan J. Locke BA ’21 performed in the lead role for the English dubbed version of the Netflix film Seoul Vibe.

Charrell Mack MFA ’21 was cast in Blues for an Alabama Sky at the Mark Taper Forum, directed by Phylicia Rashad.

Karlie Teruya BA ’21 worked as PA on Broadway’s Into the Woods and KPOP.

Galen Williams MFA ’21 starred in the Oregon Shakespeare Festival performance of Once on this Island.

Damaris Eddy BFA ’22 worked as a stage manager for Norwegian Cruise Lines.

Arturo Fernandez, Jr. BFA ’22 works as a stage manager for LA Opera. Arturo has a passion for opera and after graduation worked with Long Beach Opera, Sarasota Opera, Miami Music Festival and now full-time at LA Opera.

Isabella Gomez BFA ’22 worked as a PA on America’s Got Talent.

Alexandra Punch BA ’22 wrote, co-produced and starred in the solo show, In the Tides of Love at the Hollywood Fringe Festival. The piece was co-produced by fellow SDA alum Olivia Gill BFA ’20 and directed by SDA faculty member, Debra De Liso.

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This article appeared in the 2022-23 issue of Callboard magazine. Read more stories from the issue online.