*Ellen Diehl, Musical Theatre Dance Instructor
Teaching Artist Statement:
My teaching style arrives where technical background and a genuine love for performance meet. Having been inspired and encouraged by many mentors and teachers growing up, I understand deeply the value of a positive influence in a young person’s life. My greatest joy as a teacher is to watch a student learn to trust themselves and find the individuality of their own process and performance. Ultimately, my goal is to cultivate life-long learners who know the value of hard work and feel encouraged, loved, and confident.
After training in classical ballet for 13 years with Chambersburg Ballet Theatre, Ellen continued to study dance at Messiah University. She will earn her B.A. in Theatre with an acting emphasis and minor in dance in 2021. At Messiah, Ellen studied jazz, tap, modern, and ballet, as well as creative dramatics and dance pedagogy. She will soon enter her second year as a staff member at Dance Revelation in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, where she has taught ballet technique, pointe, and musical theatre. Previously, Ellen taught ballet at Dance Academy XIV in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania and has been a theatre/dance instructor for the SEEDS camp at Wilson College. Ellen has a passion for choreographing as well as teaching in the studio and has choreographed for Messiah University in addition to Junior productions, for programs such as the Penguin Project at Gettysburg Community Theatre.
After training in classical ballet for 13 years with Chambersburg ballet, Ellen Diehl later found her love for musical theatre as Belle in Beauty and the Beast with Chambersburg Community Theatre before pursuing her B.A. in Theatre at Messiah University. Her many Messiah credits include Ariel in Shakespeare’s The Tempest. The role earned her a nomination for the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship for which she placed as a semi-finalist at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival. Ellen has also played several roles at Allenberry Playhouse, including Ariel in The Little Mermaid, Sophie in Mamma Mia, and Sibella in the regional premiere of A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder. She also appeared as the title role in Gigi at Washington County Playhouse. Ellen most recently returned to Chambersburg as the vocal soloist in “A Touch of Christmas” with the Hagerstown Municipal Band at the Capitol Theatre. www.ellengracediehl.com
*Heather Kline, Theatre Explorers and Musikgarten instructor, Spring Musical Director, V&D Camp Drama Coach, and CVSM Program Manager
Teaching Artist Statement:
From the time we are born and throughout every stage of our development, music impacts our lives. Music helps us learn about the world and ourselves. It brings us joy, comfort, and nurtures and heals our souls. At the age of 11, I said that I wanted to be a teacher. Little did I know that this desire would lead me to mentoring young people in more ways than I could imagine as a teacher and a counselor. My journey has maintained one common theme of using my musical talents to help children and teens. As a teacher my goal is to help my students, from the young toddler to the young at heart, develop confidence, fulfill their musical potential, and find their purpose in life, be it music related or otherwise.
After graduating with a B.S. in Music Education with a concentration in voice and a minor in Theatre, Heather’s first job was working as the Creative Ministries Leader for a parish of four churches. In this role, she created and directed a dance, music, and drama troupe comprised of students ages 10-14 that traveled to perform at various churches, dinners and festivals. She also established and managed The Storm Cellar, a Christian coffee house where local bands would play, providing teens and young adults with “a place to be, to belong, and to be loved.” Since then, her life has lead down many roads, including obtaining a M.Ed. in School Counseling. In 2005, she co-created a theater company called Front and Center Stage and was the music director for several productions, including Godspell and a Christmas Cabaret. Heather has over twenty years of Regional and University theatre experience including roles as Roxy in “Chicago,” Sandy in “Grease,” Mark’s mom/chorus in “Rent,” Winnie in “No, No Nanette,” and Sister Sophia in “The Sound of Music. Recently, she found the joy of singing choral music again with the Mercersburg Community Chorus.
*Jon Meyer, Theatre Instructor
Jon was born and raised on Long Island (New York). He earned his BFA in Theatre Arts at Ohio University and several years later earned an MFA in Acting from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. He has two children, Anna (26) who is employed in the Biology department at FSU and plans to pursue a degree in Zoo Keeping starting in January of 2018, and Louis (23), a recent University of South Florida graduate in Food and Hospitality and now an employee at the Long Boat Key Club in Sarasota, Florida.
Jon started working life as an actor, moved into directing and has performed virtually every position there is in theatre over the course of 35+ years. In those 35+ years, he’s been involved in over 250 productions. He has also taught theatre on the college level, high school, middle school and elementary levels, for professional and community theatres, as well as privately. Jon has worked extensively as a dialect coach and stage combat choreographer. Jon has worked as actor, director, teacher and administrator around the country in places or with organizations such as: Repertory Theatre of America (national tour), The Puppet People (NYC), Cleveland Playhouse, Florida Studio Theatre, Sarasota Jewish Theatre (founder and Artistic Director), Court Square Theatre (presentational theatre), Arkansas Rep, Duke University, and has served as President of the Prescott Area Arts and Humanities Council – for which he created and hosted a monthly interview television show, “My Life in Art.” While in Sarasota, he hosted a radio show, “Let’s Kibbitz” and was a regular cast member with the Improvitonians in Prescott, among many other experiences.
Since graduating college, he has lived in the following states: Virginia, Ohio, Nebraska, Arkansas, North Carolina, (back to) Ohio, Florida, (back to) Virginia, (back to) Florida, Arizona and now adds Pennsylvania to the list of states he’s lived in. His last position was as Executive Director of the Prescott Center for the Arts, serving from late November 2009 to mid-February 2016, when he resigned due to a change in business models. During his tenure at PCA, among his many accomplishments, he’s most proud to have initiated and inaugurated two formidable youth education programs which are still operating: the Teen Summer Stock Ensemble – a professional and intense experience for young performers, 15 – 22, in which they rehearse and perform a full musical in 4 and half weeks under his and other professional guidance; and the Young Playwrights Festival which gives students from grades K – 12 the opportunity to write an original 10 minute play with the possibility of having it produced in the Festival. Jon will once again oversee a Young Playwrights Festival in April of 2018 at the Capitol Theatre. One other major accomplishment while at PCA which Jon is very proud of is finding the funding and being the force behind opening PCA’s black box theatre, Stage Too, which produces more provocative and challenging theatre in the Prescott area.
Before taking of the reins of the Capitol Theatre, Jon directed the world premiere of Premature Burial, based on an article by Edgar Allen Poe, at Newman University in Wichita, KS, to great acclaim.
In addition to Theatre, Jon enjoys baseball, gardening, bicycling, walking, music (he plays some guitar), writing, going to garage sales, hiking, the outdoors, and traveling. Jon is currently the Theatre Manager with the Capitol Theatre Center in Chambersburg, PA, having started on December 1, 2016.
*Jeffrey Noll, piano instructor, CVSM Children’s Choir & Voice and Drama Camp director
Bachelor of Sacred Music, Baptist Bible College. Further study at Towson State, Md. Accompanist for many area instrumental and vocal soloists. Served as musical director for various children’s musical productions at CVSM and is the Minister of Music at Hagerstown Bible Church.
Acting is professional truth telling. The job of an actor is to put themselves into imaginary circumstances and live truthfully within their character’s situation. My goal as an instructor is to help people find that truth and share it with others. Using the methodology of Practical Aesthetics, Meisner, Chekhov, and Stanislavsky, I strive to teach others how to take off their armor and use their own experiences to tell stories on stage.
As a graduate of Bucknell University, Adam Wennick received a BA in Theatre. He then studied at the Atlantic Acting School and Edge Studios in NYC. Adam is a trained performer in multiple acting techniques including Meisner, Stanislavsky, Chekhov, and Practical Aesthetics. For the past few years, Adam has been teaching students to find truth in character work and storytelling by helping students find the unique combination of methods that work best for them.
Adam Wennick has worked as a voice actor for many major brands including Wawa, Yu-Gi-Oh, Fanta, Froot Loops, Total Wireless, Aramark and many more! He has also appeared in several video games and audio books. During his 6 years working as an actor in NYC, he also produced and directed over 100 shows. Under the moniker VOAdam, he runs a voice acting YouTube channel with over 100,000,000 views.