As a child, our Artistic Director had to travel thirty miles to take performing arts classes.  The classes were expensive, and his family did not have much money.  This is why Recreational Arts was created.  We bring the programs to your community, and keeps the cost as low as possible.  And because of our generous supporters, families that qualify for financial assistance will not be turned away.  Our teaching artists have been trained at the finest conservatories in the country, and they are passionate about sharing their love for the stage with you.

 

ARTISTIC DIRECTOR

Nathan Brewer  is a stage director, musician, and educator in New York City. Selected credits include Seussical (Theatreworks/USA National Tour), Piaf: A Centennial Celebration (Town Hall), Propaganda (New York Musical Theatre Festival), What Do Critics Know (The York Theatre, Reading), Spring Awakening and Cabaret (American Theatre of Actors), Bubble Boy (New 42nd St. Studios, Workshop), Grand Hotel (Pennsylvania Centre Stage and Theatre at St. Clements), Mirette (Princeton Festival), The Secret Garden, The Drowsy Chaperone, Merrily We Roll Along (Long Island Musical Theatre Festival), Hello Again (Manhattan Theatre Source), numerous award shows and concerts collaborations with The Kennedy Center, Fairfax Symphony, West Virginia Symphony, Park Avenue Armory, and 54 Below. Director of over forty productions on the campuses of New York University, Penn State, Princeton University, Rider University, and Westminster Choir College. Assistant/Associate: Aladdin (Broadway, Toronto, and Seattle), Relatively Speaking (Broadway), Hispanic Heritage Awards (PBS), Around The World In Eighty Days (Pittsburgh Public), The World Goes Round (Pittsburgh Public), Mirita (Off-Broadway), Born For Broadway (Off-Broadway). Nathan has taught at Penn State University, The New York Film Academy, Westminster Conservatory, and is the Resident Director for both The American Pops Orchestra and Nouveau Productions. www.nathanbrewer.net

 

MANAGING DIRECTOR

hs_sharonlawtonSharon Lawton was President of the Board for Girl Scouts of the USA (Rolling Hills Council), in addition to serving as troop leader, cookie manager, and board member. For twelve years, she has managed the children and youth choirs at Liberty Corner Presbyterian Church, where she first collaborated with Nathan Brewer in 1999. Since that time, Sharon has organized dozens of summer camps and productions, through which hundreds of lives have been changed. Sharon received a BA in Mathematics and an MS in Library Science. She met her husband Rich while training computer programmers at AT&T, and their two daughters have grown up through Nathan’s summer programs!

 

 

TEACHERS

Chaequan Anderson is an experienced singer, keyboardist, conductor, and teacher, and holds a Bachelor Arts in Music from Westminster Choir College. He has held positions with the Trenton Children’s Chorus, Princeton Girl Choir, and Christina Seix Academy. While at Westminster he also worked as the Choirmaster for the Rho Kappa Chapter of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity (PMA), America’s largest male music fraternity. Currently, Chaequan serves as the Organist at Neshanic United Methodist Church and the Director of Middle School Choirs at Monclair Kimberley Academy in Monclair, NJ. He is also the Founder and Artistic Director of the Glassbrook Vocal Ensemble, an emerging professional choir based in Ewing, NJ.

 

 

Chessa Crum is the K-6th grade music teacher at Pivik Elementary in Plum Borough School District. In addition to teaching general music, she is also the director of the 5th and 6th grade Chorus and after school theater program. A suma cum laude graduate of IUP, Chessa received his B.S. in Music Education in 2012. Since then, Chessa has taught general music and theater in the area and as a part of Teach For America in Appalachia. Chessa has been involved in performing with local choirs and community theater’s in the area. She is currently pursing her Masters in Curriculum and Instruction at PointPark University.

 

GillianErlenborn Gillian Erlenborn is a sophomore Music Education major at Westminster Choir College of Rider University. She is from Martinsville, New Jersey, and began her musical career under the tutelage of Nathan Brewer when she was 5 years old. Gillian has studied classical vocal music, musical theater, cello, handbells, and piano. Favorite theatre credits include; Belle (Beauty and The Beast), Robin (Godspell), Millie (Thoroughly Modern Millie), Little Red Riding Hood (Into The Woods), and Snoopy (You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown). In addition to her studies, Gillian also serves as the Handbell Director at Middlebush Reformed Church in Middlebush, New Jersey.

 

Clara Hanahan is a rising junior at Penn State, where she’s working toward her BFA in Acting. She has also studied dance, choral music, and musical theatre and has been performing and choreographing for the past six years. She is thrilled to have this opportunity to share her love of theatre with others! Some of her favorite roles include Medium Alison (Fun Home), Romaine (The Laramie Project), and Bret (Calvin Berger).

 
 

Lauren Johnson is the K-5 General Music/Choral and Beginning Band Teacher at H.B. Milnes Elementary School in Fair Lawn, NJ. She studied Music Education and Sacred Music at Westminster Choir College and has enjoyed teaching, music, and theatre her entire life! She is excited to continue sharing her love of musical theatre with children at RexArts for her second summer here. Some of her favorite roles include Maria (The Sound of Music), Eliza Doolittle (My Fair Lady), and Sarah (Guys and Dolls).

 

 

hs_daniellemaggioDanielle Maggio holds a Master of Arts degree in Ethnomusicology from the University of Pittsburgh and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Cultural Studies from Columbia College Chicago. She is currently a PhD Candidate in the Music department at the University of Pittsburgh where she does applied work that links youth development with politically empowered music of the African Diaspora. Danielle began her training in the theatre arts twenty years ago at Act One Theatre School and Pittsburgh Musical Theatre. She has written, directed and choreographed for The City Theatre (Pittsburgh, PA), YACK (Zelienople, PA), and The Westminster Conservatory (Princeton, NJ). Danielle has taught Artistic Activism classes through the MGR Foundation (Pittsburgh, PA), which engaged at risk youth with performance, history and community, and currently works as a consultant for the Father Ryan Arts & Culture Center (McKees Rocks, PA), where she curates and performs events that celebrate Pittsburgh’s rich local music history. She is a vocalist who has recently performed with the Afro Yaqui Music Collective, which merges jazz, funk and soul into dialogue with indigenous musics of the 21st century.

 

Michael Marrero will be attending Ithaca College in the Fall to pursue a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Acting, along with a minor in Dance. Michael is from Hamilton, New Jersey and has had the pleasure of working with Nathan and a few other staff members two summers ago in a two week Musical Theatre intensive. Favorite credits include Beauty & the Beast (Cogsworth), Bye Bye Birdie (Albert Peterson), Anything Goes (Billy Crocker), 42nd Street (Billy Lawlor), The Music Man (Tommy Dijilas), and Once On This Island (Daniel).

 

Abby McGuire is a rising senior at State College Area High School. She is currently looking to pursue a career in education. Some of her favorite past roles include Molly (Peter and the Starcatcher), Rapunzel (Rapunzel! Rapunzel! A Very Hairy Fairy Tale), and Late Rabbit (The House at Pooh Corner). Abby has been a camp counselor for the SCAHS Thespians’ musical theatre summer camp for the past two years and is thrilled to continue passing on her love of theatre through Rex Arts camp this summer.

 

Raymond Nugent is from Red Bank, NJ and graduated from Westminster Choir College with a Bachelor of Music in Piano in 2014 and Master of Music in Piano Performance and Pedagogy while holding a Graduate Assistantship for the Piano Department in 2016. Currently, Ray teaches a piano studio of 31 students throughout the Princeton area and serves as the Pianist and Music Director for the United First Presbyterian Church of Amwell in Ringoes, NJ. He also continues to perform and accompany regularly, serving as the performance accompanist for various schools, musical productions, and ensembles throughout New Jersey.

 

Becca Rice is a second year graduate student studying Vocal Performance and Pedagogy at Westminster Choir College of Rider University. She received her Bachelor’s in Vocal Performance from Wheaton College, IL, graduating summa cum laude in May 2017. In addition to classical voice, Becca has training in violin, piano, and dance. She teaches private lessons in Princeton, NJ.

 

 

Torrance (Torry) Shepherd is a graduate of Penn State University with a double emphasis in performance and directing. Her latest project was working as the Costume Design Associate on the first national tour of Aladdin. RexArts has been a wonderful home to her for the past few years and it has been a joy for her to watch children find that little spark of magic through theatre.

 

 

 

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

hs_kathleenduffyKathleen Duffy is Managing Principal, Corporate Secretary, Treasurer and Board Member of Econsult Corporation, an economic consulting firm in Philadelphia, and has been with the firm since 1980. Kathy’s prime responsibilities focus on the firm’s financial and legal matters as well as contracts and billings for client projects and the firm’s computer network. Since 2007, Ms. Duffy has volunteered extensively with Medford, NJ as production assistant of their musical theater productions in the spring for the Middle School and in the summer for the township musical theater camp. In addition she was founding President of the Greater South Jersey Chorus (1992) and former Board Member of the New Jersey Master Choral (2007-2009). Ms. Duffy received a B.B.A from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. duffy@econsult.com

 

hs_danabutiaDana Frishkorn first met Nathan Brewer when they performed at a summer arts camp together as children and understands how much the collaborative, supportive and fun environment at REX Arts can impact a child’s life. Dana received a BS from the University of Pittsburgh and her Juris Doctorate from Duquesne University. She currently works as contracts counsel for a transportation technology solution provider in Pittsburgh, PA. She also serves as a Volunteer Lawyer for the Arts with the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council and is a member of the National House Corporation Board of the Chi Omega National Fraternity.

 

 

hs_davidearlenbornDavid Erlenborn is a proud father of three children who have grown up through Nathan Brewer’s arts programs. David is Managing Partner at Professional Partnering Services, LLC. BA and MS in Mathematics from Leigh University.

 

 

 

 

andreaharumschiavoniAndrea Harum Schiavoni is a Southampton Town Justice, East End Veterans Court Judge, East End Regional Intervention Court Judge and of counsel to the law firm of Campolo, Middleton and McCormick, LLP. More importantly, Andrea is Mom to Thomas and Anna, who has participated in the Long Island Musical Theater Festival since its inception in 2013. Once introduced to LIMTF and the singularly wonderful pre-professional experience it provides to students, the Schiavoni family was hooked and committed to helping the festival grow.

 

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