Speaking info

Strictly Speaking Logo

University Theatre hosts professional theatre makers to speak about their work, their industry and their journey within the arts.

Speakers will take questions from attendees during this one-hour interactive zoom conversation. Pre-registration required for each speaker. Zoom links will be sent to attendees the beginning 48-hours prior to the event.



Matthew Miller

DIRECTOR

Chicago based director, casting director & TV executive producer.

Co-creator and director of TV Land’s Teachers. Commercial Director for Got Milk?, Crest, Eggo, and Lowe’s and has directed in theaters such as Steppenwolf, Second City and Lifeline Theatre

February 2 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Chris Chalk

ACTOR / FILMMAKER

Chalk is known for television roles such as  Lucius Fox on “Gotham”, journalist Gary Cooper in HBO’s “The Newsroom”, Marine Tom Walker in “Homeland”, and murderer Jody Adair in “Justified”. He has also been in multiple Law & Order episodes. Other credits include roles in the 2010 Broadway play Fences, and the films 12 Years a Slave (2013) and Red Sea Diving Resort (2019)

February 4 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Ryan Moller Photo

Ryan Moller

COSTUME DESIGNER

Chicago based award winning costume designer for companies such as The Metropolitan Opera, The Santa Fe Opera, Norwegian Cruise Line, and many more. Dresser for 25 broadway shows including: Hamilton, Rock of Ages, Memphis, Head over Heels, Mean Girls, Miss Saigon, American Psycho and Hedwig and the Angry Inch.

February 11 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Stephanie Trigg

COMPANY MANAGER

NYC based Event and Entertainment Producer and Company Manager working in theatre and the immersive world. More than a decade in the industry with seven years of experience working with Emursive and Punchdrunk International, developing Sleep No More in New York City. 

February 16 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Seth Starr

Lighting Test Specialist

Former Field Service Engineer and current Acceptance Test Specialist for Electronic Theatre Controls. Facilitate User “Beta” Testing of ETC products before going to market.

February 18 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Jackson Cooper

Major Gifts Officer

Major Gifts Officer for Pacific Northwest Ballet working concurrent on marketing and communications to donors. He is also an MFA in Arts Leadership candidate at Seattle University where his research focus is the decolonization of fundraising principles and entering the arts career field in a post-COVID world.

February 23 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Jennifer Baker

Assistant Professor of Design, St. Lawrence University 

MFA in Theatrical Design and Scenography from The University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Her research focus involves professional work in theater, opera and film, incorporating visual arts elements and techniques.

February 25 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Shauna Johannesen

Writer/Actor/Filmmaker

Vancouver-based award-winning writer, actor, and filmmaker. Her plays have been produced across Western Canada. Her short film , “Bedbugs: A Musical Love Story,” garnered numerous accolades on the festival circuit, including Leo awards for Screenwriting and Best Female Actor. 

March 2 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Majestic Scenic Logo

Jessica Holcombe

Owner/Charge Artist

Scenic painter and owner of Majestic Scenic in Winston-Salem NC, a full service scenic art company.

March 4 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Anthony Shou

PRINCIPAL CONSULTANT

Acoustics consultant in performing arts related venues and academic facilities focusing on architectural acoustics, sound isolation and noice vibration control to ensure great acoustics is accessible to everyone.

March 11 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Joel Veenstra

STAGE MANAGER

Professional AEA stage manager, production manager, producer, & improviser. Theatres include Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Pasadena Playhouse and many more. Currently Associate Chair of Production and Co-head of the Stage Management Program for University of California’s Claire Trevor School of the Arts

March 16 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Audrey Hoo

PRODUCTION MANAGER

Production Manager at the Tony Award-winning theater, Berkeley Repertory Theater and former production manager of A.C.T. and La Jolla Playhouse 

March 18 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Elizabeth Mak

LIGHTING & MEDIA DESIGNER

Singapore-born NYC-based lighting and media designer. Her practice as an artist is rooted in using various forms of visual storytelling to create immersive and experiential works that address issues of social justice

March 20 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Jay Machado

Virtual Art Department Supervisor

LA based VES award winning hard surface modeler for Industrial Light & Magic. Currently supervising the Virtual Art Department on an upcoming Star Wars TV series

March 25 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

John McIlwee

DIRECTOR, ACTOR & DESIGNER

Retired director of NC State University Theatre

April 1 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Emily Tadlock

TV NEWS ANCHOR & MMJ

Award winning multi-media journalist and primetime anchor for Bangor, Maine’s WABI TV 5 – 5 p.m. newscast

March 30 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Abby Tutorow

FIELD SERVICE ENGINEER

Factory-based Field Service Engineer for ETC lighting controls systems. Abby works with programming, troubleshooting, implementation, and training.

April 8 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Annalisa Mickelson

Freelance Producer, Events Specialist and Marketing Director

Marketing for Broadway and Off-
Broadway shows including Mamma Mia!, RENT, and Cirque du Soleil’s Zarkana. She also served as a producer at Blue Man Group in Las Vegas, Brazil,
Berlin, and Orlando, and produced TV appearances on Best Time Ever with Neil Patrick Harris, The Today Show, I Can Do That, and SuperHuman.

April 13 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Photo: Kaitlin Gill Rider

Kaitlin Jill Rider

LIGHTING DESIGNER & SALES

RTP based freelance lighting designer with over 10 years of experience in dance, theatrical, worship, and architectural lighting design. Director of Outside Sales for WHOCO Lighting and Controls, INC.

April 20 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Jen Dasher

COSTUME DESIGNER

Principal designer and founder of J.Dasher Creative, a creative studio that has produced designs for Cirque du Soleil, Taylor Swift, Paula Abdul, Glimmerglass Opera, The Washington Ballet, Ford’s Theatre, PBS, Ballet X and a selection of Broadway and Off-
Broadway works. Currently Assistant Professor of Costume Design at The University of Florida,

April 22 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Alejandro Fajardo

LIGHTING DESIGNER

Colombian lighting designer based in New York City. Works include designing plays and musicals, directing dance tours and festivals, lighting fashion shows, music festivals, escape rooms, and other live events. www.fajardodesigns.com 

April 27 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021

Andy Señor

Director & Actor

Currently serving as the associate director a La Jolla Playhouse.

April 29 | 6pm EST

Registration opens January 2021