Curtains Cast Photos
Award Winning Cast and Crew
JESSICA SPILLANE (Artistic Director) is celebrating her 20th production at THS! Past favorites include Joseph, Seussical, How to Succeed, RENT, and Fiddler. An eight-time nominee in the Connecticut High School Musical Theatre Awards, Jessica is the 2016 winner for Outstanding Director. In 2014, she was honored as a Free Speech Defender by the National Coalition Against Censorship for her work in theatre and in 2015 she received the Educational Theatre Association’s “Inspirational Theatre Educator” Award. A veteran teacher of English at THS, Jessica is thrilled to be sharing the stage with her two oldest children, Julie and Andy. Thanks to Dad and Tim for holding the fort at home. All the love in the world to the greatest creative team and cast and crew ever! Thanks for an amazing 20 years, everybody
SHANNON BOLAN (Producer) is thrilled to produce her 10th show at Trumbull High School! From The Pirates of Penzance (2009) to Seussical (2017), each show has been an incredible adventure that brings new and fun challenges and learning experiences for the production team. Stand out productions include Fiddler on the Roof (2011), RENT (2014), and How to Succeed… (Winner of CHSMTA’s 2016 Outstanding Production of the Year). She couldn’t do it without the incredible production team, creative staff, and supportive parents. Thank you to Jess for letting her join this team 10 years ago and for being an amazing mentor and friend, and thank you to Matt for being the person who can solve any problem she brings his way.
MATT BRACKSIECK (Technical Director), English teacher at THS, is excited to be back for his 8th THS Musicals production. Past productions include Fiddler on the Roof; The Wiz; Crazy for You; RENT: School Edition; Hello, Dolly!; How to Succeed….; and Seussical. He’d like to thank Sam and Steph for pushing the set beyond the limits of time and space; Joe, John, Jill C., and the two newest members of the team: Laura and Kent (Welcome!), who somehow manage to make the impossible real. Thanks always to Jessica and Shannon who keep having him back; and to Cathy B. (we knew you couldn’t stay away) whose expertise was crucial. Special thanks goes to the team at home--Jill, Orion, and Maia--for all the support.
ABIGAIL ROOT (Choreographer) is thrilled to back at Trumbull High School with her fifth production as choreographer. Abby has received two CHSMTA awards for Outstanding Choreography for Trumbull High’s Crazy For You and How to Succeed… Recent choreography credits include The Christmas Elf at Downtown Cabaret Theater, and Shrek Jr. at Music Theater of CT. She is the Assistant Artistic Director of Broadway Bootcamp, where she has taught, directed and choreographed for the past 8 years. She received a BFA Music Theater from Illinois Wesleyan University. Abby would like to thank the dance captains for their hard work and Frank Root for being both father and mentor. Congratulations to the cast and crew on such a wonderful production!
SAMUEL MALONEY (Set Design) is a THS alumnus and currently practices architecture with CUBE 3 Studio in Massachusetts. Sam’s biographies have previously appeared in three THS Musicals as a student (The Music Man, Fiddler on the Roof, and The Wiz), and four as a set designer (RENT, Hello, Dolly, How to Succeed…, and Seussical). Sam thanks Stephanie Bont, Jessica Spillane, Shannon Bolan, Matt Bracksieck, Jill Clark, Everett Rende, Joe Amaturo, John Leonard, Cathy Bolton and all of the volunteers who dedicate their time to the construction and decoration of the set.
STEPHANIE BONT (Set Design) is thrilled to be set designing another amazing show with the wonderfully talented Sam Maloney. As a Trumbull High School graduate, Stephanie is honored to be working on her ninth musical with THS. Steph was the Technical Advisor of Boston University’s premier musical theater group, BU on Broadway. She has set designed shows including Godspell, Chicago, The Drowsy Chaperone, as well as THS’s performances of RENT, Hello, Dolly!, and Seussical. She is very excited to add this production of Curtains. Thank you to Spillane, Shannon, Mr. B, Jill and everyone involved for making this all possible. Stephanie is truly amazed at all the hard work the cast and crew has put into this process and couldn’t be prouder. Have fun and BREAK LEGS everyone!
EVERETT RENDE (Lighting Designer) THS class of 2015 and current Penn State student, is excited to return to the THS production team. His lighting credits include THS’s RENT and Hello, Dolly!, Broadway Method Academy’s Carousel and Spring Awakening, TYA’s Thoroughly Modern Millie, Mary Poppins, and Ragtime, several shows with Rockwell Dance Center and more. Thanks to: Shannon and Jess whose collaborative genius made this production possible; Sam and Steph for their limitless scenic designs; Jill, Cathy, and Laura’s indescribable creativity; and to his family for their balance of sarcasm and encouragement. Endless gratitude goes to James for his innovation and tenacity, and to Matt for his wit and mentorship over the years. Everett dedicates all his hard work to John Rome and black coffee.
JAMES GALLO (Co-Lighting Designer) is excited to be a part of Curtains, his first musical as lighting designer. Previous Trumbull High School productions include: Charley’s Aunt (lighting crew); How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (lighting crew); Love/Sick (asst. lighting designer); Seussical (asst. lighting designer); and this year’s 24 Hour Play-A-Thon (lighting designer); as well as several other local productions. He would like to thank: alumni Ariana, Amanda, and Cory for showing him the ropes of crew; Mr. Bracksieck and Everett for being mentors to him over the course of his three years and for teaching him everything he knows about lighting; and his friends and family for their endless support. He congratulates the entire cast and crew of Curtains on another great show.
MIA MCKINNEY (Stage Manager) is thrilled for her fourth and final musical at Trumbull High School. After being in the ensemble of Hello, Dolly!, the Assistant Stage Manager of How to Succeed..., finally the full-fledged Stage Manager of Love/Sick, Seussical, and the 24 Hour Play-A-Thon, she is now ready to step into her responsibilities for the last time. Although it is bittersweet, she is so grateful for her time spent in the auditorium over the past four years. She would like to thank her family and friends for supporting her in her stage management journey. Above all, she would like to thank Mrs. Spillane for being an amazing director, mentor, and the best ally a student could have at Trumbull High. Break legs, everyone!
BRITLEY LEARNARD (Production Assistant) is happy to be a part of Curtains. She first joined crew during TYA’s production of Mary Poppins (2015) and continued production crew at Trumbull High School during her freshman year for Charley’s Aunt. Previously she was a production assistant for the musicals How To Succeed... and Seussical and produced the 24 Hour Play-A-Thon and Love/Sick. She wishes good luck to the cast and crew and would like to thank them for their dedication. Britley would also like to thank graduates Julianne Mirmina, Lindsey Mcmorris and Gabby Tropp for their support and for encouraging her to produce during her freshman year. Lastly, a special thank you to Mrs. Bolan for mentoring her and for giving her this unforgettable opportunity.
HARRISON GILBERTI (Aaron Fox) is ecstatic and honored to be in his third THS musical! Last year Harrison loved performing with THeSpians in Love/Sick (Man) and Seussical the Musical (Cat). He loved being in TYA’s outstanding production of Ragtime (Houdini) and The Little Mermaid(Ensemble). Harrison would like to extend huge thanks to Mrs. Spillane, Mrs. Bolan, Jerold, Abby, Mr. B., the Mamas, the cast, crew and production team for their dedication and hard work. Break legs everyone!
JACQUELINE MATE (Georgia Hendricks), a junior, is overjoyed to play Georgia in THS’s production of Curtains! Some past credits include; Seussical (Jojo. CHSMTA Nomination: Leading Actress), Beauty and the Beast (Belle), Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (Truly Scrumptious. Original Junior Cast), and How To Succeed... (Miss Jones). Jacqueline has performed songs a number of times from The Phantom of the Opera and Love Never Dies throughout CT and NYC. Most recently, Jacqueline competed in NYC for the Metropolitan Room’s Metrostar and currently holds the title “Audience Favorite.” She also won the opera division of Barnum’s Got Talent Vocal Competition in a nod to Jenny Lind. She would like to thank Mrs.Spillane, Jerold, Mrs.Bolan, Abby, Mr.B, the Mamas, the cast and crew, and her family and friends for inspiring her to be the best person and performer she can be and for their never ending love and support.
RACHEL SALEM (Carmen Bernstein), a senior, is thrilled to be Carmen in her third Trumbull High School musical! In previous productions, Rachel has performed in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (Ensemble) and Seussical (Sour Kangaroo). Other shows include Phantom (Fluere) at Downtown Cabaret and Pirates of Penzance (Mabel) at Crystal Theatre. She would like to give a huge thanks to Mrs. Spillane, Mrs. Bolan, Jerold Goldstein, Abby, Mr. Bracksieck, The Mamas, Cast, Crew, and the Production Team for all of their hard work and contributions towards this show. Special shout out to Joe Santenello, her vocal instructor for his guidance. Lastly, Rachel would like to thank her Mom and Dad whose love and support has brought her to where she is today.
CHRISTOPHER CONAWAY (Lieutenant Frank Cioffi) is proud to be in his second and last Trumbull High Musical! The past two years, he had the honor of performing Carousel (Enough Jr.) at Fairfield Prep and Seussical (Horton). He wants to thank everyone in the cast and crew who worked with and supported him. He wants to thank his family for their love and patience while he was working on the show. He wants to thank Mrs. Spillane, Mrs. Bolan, Jerold, and Abby for pushing him to his limit and getting him to be the best performer he could be. He especially wants to thank Mrs. Hoover and Mrs. Evans, his director and music teacher from Fairfield Prep, for forcing him to do the musical. He wouldn’t be in this playbill if it wasn’t for them.
RACHEL ARIANNA WEINTRAUB (Niki Harris), a freshman, is thrilled to be playing Niki Harris in THS’s production of Curtains. Favorite roles include Olive Ostrovsky (Spelling Bee), Jane Banks (Mary Poppins), and Susan Walker (Miracle on 34th Street). Off Broadway Credits: Minnie-Mae Barry (Bend in The Road) (NYMF), Lana (Reddi High), Annika (Pippi Longstocking), Ellen Rosen (Number The Stars). NYC Live Performances/Concerts/Cabarets: Carnegie Hall, 54 Below, Symphony Space, The Triad, Metropolitan Room, Foxwoods Casino, and Broadway Comedy Club. Additional credits: AEA Staged Readings and Recorded Demos for musicals slated for Broadway, numerous commercials, movies, television shows and voice overs. Rachel would like to thank Mrs. Spillane, Jerold, Abby, Mr.B, Mrs.Bolan, and the Mamas for everything, the cast and crew for being so incredible, and her family for their unwavering support.
JULIE SPILLANE (Bambi Bernét) is beyond thrilled to be performing in her 10th and final musical at Trumbull High, starting from her kindergarten performance as the Littlest Who in the 2006 production of Seussical. Her most recent THS performances include Hello, Dolly! (dance ensemble), How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (dance captain) and Seussical (dance captain). Julie is in her 16th year of dance and currently studies at Rockwell Dance Center. She would like to thank Abby, Jerold, Mrs. Bolan and Mr. Bracksieck but most importantly Mrs. Spillane, her incredible mother with whom she is so proud to start and finish this musical theatre journey.
CARLOS PEREZ (Oscar Shapiro), a senior, is honored to have such a fun and fitting role in this year’s production of Curtains. He began his musical career his sophomore year as an ensemble member of H2$ and went on to be a Wickersham Brother in Seussical the following year. After winning a 2017 CHSMTA for best featured ensemble group, Carlos is thrilled to have fun and make the most out of his final year at THS. He would like to thank his mother and sister for convincing him to make the best decision of his high school career by joining the musical and finding his second family. He would also like to thank Mrs. Spillane, Mrs. Bolan, and Jerold for all their hard work and making the show possible.
THOMAS LEONARD (Christopher Belling) is thrilled to express his “unbridled brilliance” in this year’s production of Curtains. Over the past years here at Trumbull High School, Thomas has played the parts of General Gengus Khan Schmitz in Seussical and the T.V. Announcer in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. He put in a lot of hard work to get this part, so he would like to thank his acting teacher, Jerold Goldstein, and his family for pushing him to be the best person he can be. He can’t wait to put a smile on the audience’s face, and he wishes the cast and crew the best of luck for this brilliant show.
ANDY SPILLANE (Bobby Pepper), a sophomore, is thrilled to be a part of this year’s fantastic production of Curtains. This being his second THS musical makes the whole experience even more exciting. In last year’s production of Seussical, Andy played Wickersham #1 and absolutely loved the experience and knew he had to come back for another THS production. In addition to the musical, Andy plays on the THS soccer team in the fall and does track both in the spring and in the winter during the musical (making for a lot of busy days!). Andy would like to thank Mrs. Bolan, Jerold, Abby, and, most of all, Mrs. Spillane for making this year’s wonderful production of Curtains come to life.
SARAH GIAQUINTO (Joannie Harmon) is thrilled to be playing Joannie Harmon in Trumbull High School’s 2018 production of Curtains! Sarah has been an active member of the theater program at Trumbull High since her freshman year, including being in the cast of Hello, Dolly!, How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying, and in last year’s Seussical, where she played a Bird Girl. She was also an assistant producer for THS’s two most recent fall plays, Love/Sick and the 24-Hour Playathon. Furthermore, Sarah is currently the vice president of Trumbull High’s Thespian Society. Sarah thanks her family, friends, and fellow cast and crew members for making her last show at Trumbull High School an experience she will never forget!
DYLAN CRANSTON (Randy Dexter) is so excited to be part of his first show at Trumbull High since his childhood roles in the ensembles of Fiddler On The Roof and The Music Man. He’d like to thank his friends and family for encouraging him every step of the way and is ecstatic to be part of this cast.
MATTHEW FERRI (Sidney Bernstein) is ecstatic to be playing Sidney Bernstein in Curtains . This is Matt’s last THS show and he couldn’t be more proud to say that he was a part of such a great production. Matt was recently seen in Seussical (Mr. Mayor), Love/Sick (Andy), Written Up/A Play On Words (Paul). He also participated in TYA’s Ragtime as a member of the ensemble and had the privilege of being a director in the 24 Hour Playathon this past fall. He would like to thank everyone who has helped him along with his journey through theatre, specifically his parents. Though he is moving on to college next year, he still plans on being involved in what he loves most and will never forget the lessons he was taught while he was here.
DJ FLAM (Harv Freemont) is so excited to be participating in Curtains, his third THS show. In the past he has been a part of the TYA summer program in Children of Eden (Children’s Ensemble), Mary Poppins (Ensemble), and The Little Mermaid (Seagull 1) as well as How to Succeed (Ensemble) and Seussical (Dance Ensemble) at THS. He is so excited to be playing a featured role this year and would like to thank his family, as well as the production staff, for this fantastic show.
ALLIE LEWIS (Jessica Cranshaw, Assistant to the Music Director) is overjoyed to be a part of her fourth and final THS musical. From her debut in the ensembles of Hello, Dolly! and How To Succeed… to playing keyboard in the pit of Seussical, and even directing for Love/Sick and being a playwright for the 24 Hour Play-A-Thon, she has loved every moment of participating in this program. Congratulations to the whole cast and crew who have come to mean so much to her. She’d like to thank her family, friends, and the one and only Jerold Goldstein for supporting her every step of the way. Finally, a special thanks to Adam Podd for sparking her love of music and for continuously augmenting her passion.
KAVYA GANUGAPATI (Dance Captain) is a senior and is beyond excited to be one of the dance captains for this awesome show! This is her fourth THS production, as she has participated in Hello, Dolly! (dance ensemble), How to Succeed (Production/Lobby Crew), and Seussical (dance ensemble). She has also participated in TYA shows such as The Little Mermaid and Ragtime, to name a few. Kavya would like to thank Abby and Frank Root for being the best choreographers and for inspiring her, as well as all the hardworking and passionate teachers and adults involved with these productions. She would like to thank her loving family for always encouraging her and wishes the whole cast and crew of Curtains will “Break a Leg!”
ASHLEY ANDERSON (Dance Captain) is ecstatic to take part in her third THS Musical and her first as a dance captain for Curtains. Both her freshman and sophomore year, she had the honor of being in the dance ensemble for How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying (winner of CHSTMA for best choreography), and Seussical. After 9 years of dance growing up and 12 years of gymnastics under her belt, she is so excited to dance her heart out with her best friends. She wants to thank her parents and sister, Mrs. Spillane, Mrs. Bolan, Jerold Goldstein, and Mr. Bracksieck for their support, and, especially, Abby Root for being the best leader ever! Break a leg!
WILL IERONIMO (Head Student Builder, Backstage Manager) is excited for his final show as part of THS. Past shows Will has worked on are in order: How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (Co-Elevator Operator), Love/Sick (Run Crew), Seussical (Backstage Manager), TYA’s Ragtime(Runcrew) and most recently the THeSpians 24 Hour Play-A-Thon (Managing Director). Will would love to thank Mr. Bracksieck, Mrs. Spillane, and Mrs. Bolan for all of the opportunities they have given him throughout his involvement at THS. He would also like to thank all the other crew members for always setting the stage for the actors. Lastly, he would love to thank his Mom and brother TJ for being the best people he has ever known and loved.
ROBERT FOLEY (Head Student Builder) is a senior at Trumbull High School. He has served on the set construction crews of past productions, such as LOVE/SICK, Charley’s Aunt, How to Succeed In Business Without Really Trying, Seussical, the 24-Hour Playathon, and now Curtains. With TYA, he has assisted with Ragtime, The Little Mermaid, and Mary Poppins. Last summer, he was on run crew for Musicals at Richter’s summer musical, West Side Story. Robert would like to thank his friends and family for their support. After all, we’re all in “The Same Boat”.