Department of Theatre and Speech Faculty
John R. Burgess (M.F.A., University of Arizona)
John R. Burgess, Technical Director/Lighting Designer, received his MFA in Design and Technical Production from the University of Arizona and his BA from California State University, Fullerton. Previous employment includes Trinity University, the University of California at Santa Barbara, and the University of Memphis. Since arriving at UTC in 2001, he has provided Technical Direction and Lighting Design for over 25 UTC productions, as well as many local productions, including Opera and Dance. A former Foy Inventerprises Flying Director and Rigger, he has worked productions in 22 states and 2 Canadian provinces, and is a member of I.A.T.S.E. Local 140. He teaches courses in technical production, design as well as Introduction to Theatre.
Suzanne Carter (M.M., Cincinnati Conservatory of Music)
Suzanne Dyslin Carter received a Masters of Music degree from the College Conservatory of Music/University of Cincinnati . She won a national Young Artists competition which allowed her five years study in New York City .While there she toured with the sound of Music ,sang opera with the Young Metropolitan Opera touring group as well as other opera venues. Ms. Carter also sang with the Gaertnerplatz Light Opera Company in Munich Germany for 2 years. In Vancouver, British Columbia Suzanne taught musical theatre and singing at Vancouver City college for 8 years and acted as music director for all musical productions. She also began singing jazz at various venues. She teaches public speaking and voice and diction. Suzanne is founder, composer and director of the Ripe and Ready Players, a nationally recognized theatre troupe for older adults which performs original vignettes and songs and tours the Southeast.
Margaret Clark (M.Ed., West Georgia College, M.A. University of Georgia)
Margaret Clark is an Lecturer in Speech, teaching Public Speaking and Interpersonal Communication at UTC since 2007.
Jeannie Hacker-Cerulean (M.A., Louisiana State University)
Jeannie Hacker-Cerulean is teaching Public Speaking, Reader's Theatre, Introduction to the Theatre and Introduction to Performance as a Full Time Lecturer at UTC. Jeannie has run her own theatre company in Taos, New Mexico, "The New Mexico Nature Theatre" and was resident playwright for the "Taos Children's Theatre". Currently she produces traveling, environmentally themed plays at festivals and also teaches improvisational workshops in festival settings. She is currently working on a biodiversity project with the Urban Century Institute and hosts sustainability workshops, art, music and theatre events on site at UCI's Shallowford Ranch. Jeannie is on the Education committee of the Chattanooga Film Commission, on the board of the Sequatchie Valley Institute and is faculty advisor for the Theatre and Performance Society, a UTC student organization.
Karen Henderson (M.A. in Screenwriting and Film Studies, Hollins University)
Karen Henderson, Clinical Assistant Professor, has a Masters in Film Studies from Hollins University, a Bachelor of Music Education from Samford University, and a Bachelor of Arts (Theatre) from UTC. Henderson has a long background in theatre, with many years of experience in both community theatre and creating church drama. Since arriving in Chattanooga in 1987, she has been involved as a volunteer at the Chattanooga Theatre Centre as an actor, house manager, and crew person. She teaches Introduction to Performance and Introduction to Film.
V. Gaye Jeffers (M.F.A., University of Alabama)
Gaye Jeffers is a director, designer and playwright. She received her MFA in Directing from the University of Alabama and her undergraduate degree in Theatre and Speech from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Gaye’s Chicago theatre credits include work with the Tony-Award winning Goodman Theatre, The Chicago Dramatists, The National Jewish Theatre, Lifeline Theatre, Cloud 42 Productions and the Tony-Award winning Victory Gardens Theatre. Gaye was a founding member and the artistic director of BroadAxe Theatre in Nashville, where she directed MUD by Maria Irene Fornes, which was chosen as the Best Theatre Production of 2001. Regional work includes directing and designing for Birmingham Festival Theatre, the Kentuck Arts Festival, Barking Legs Theatre and the Shaking Ray Levi Society. Gaye’s playwriting credits include: APPEALING WOMEN: LIFE, LIBERTY AND THE PURSUIT OF HAPPY MEALS, PHILO (an adaptation of Sophocles’ PHILOCTEES), PEACE (an adaptation of Aristophanes’ PEACE), and the ten-minute plays MORNING SICKNESS, DAY AFTER DADDY, FUNERAL and SISSY.
Steve Ray (M.F.A. University of Alabama)
Steve Ray has worked professionally as a designer and director for such companies as the Oklahoma Shakespearean Festival, the Birmingham Festival Theatre, Birmingham Children’s Theatre, and the University of Alabama Opera. From 1996-2002, Steve was the National Drama Director for Wycliffe Bible Translators Australia where he toured musicals across Australia. In 2005, Steve received an M. F. A. from the University of Alabama. He taught at Birmingham Southern College, Shelton State Community College and Southern Union State Community College before joining the faculty at UTC.
Sydney Roberts (B.F.A., University of Texas, United Scenic Artists 829 )
Sydney Roberts is a Teaching Associate and Specialist in costume design and construction. She has designed over 125 productions at UTC and works in Atlanta at the Alliance Theatre, Georgia Shakespeare, True Colors Theatre Company, Actor's Express, Synchronicity Performance Group, Horizon Theatre, and Theatre in the Square. She is an Associate Artist at Georgia Shakespeare and a member of United Scenic Artists 829. Visit her website at www.sydneyrobertscostumedesign.com
Mac Smotherman, Department Head (M.F.A., Trinity University)
Mac Smotherman received his MFA from Trinity University, Dallas Theater Center. He completed an intensive Directing Colloquium at the University of Illinois. He also completed intensives in Meisner and Alexander Techniques at The Neighborhood Playhouse in NYC. He is Certified by The Society of American Fight Directors and parts his hair on the left. In addition to directing duties, Mac teaches Play Analysis, Acting I and II.
Patrick Sweetman (M.F.A., Catholic University)
Patrick Sweetman received his MFA in Acting from Catholic University of America. He received his BA from University of Massachusetts. Patrick has acted on stage, film and television in Boston, MA; Washington, DC and Los Angeles, CA. He has directed at the Chattanooga Theatre Centre, The Ocoee Players, and Essex community college in Baltimore. He teaches courses in perfromance, public speaking and Introduction to Theatre.
Kim Wheetley ( M.A., Schiller College – Berlin, Germany)
Kim is the executive director of UTC’s Southeast Center for Education in arts and holds the Lyndhurst Chair of Excellence in Arts Education. He previously taught high school theatre in California, Texas, and Thailand and was curriculum specialist for the Texas Education Agency. Kim was a member of the national writing teams for the National Standards for Theatre Education and INTASC Model Standards for Licensing Classroom Teachers and Specialists in the Arts. He developed three professional development video series on arts education commissioned by Annenberg/Corporation for Public Broadcasting. He is a past president of the American Alliance for Theatre and Education. Kim is currently a member of the College Board’s National Task Force on Arts in Education and Allied Arts of Greater Chattanooga’s Arts Education Cabinet.
Steve Ray teaches the acting class in the Studio Theatre.
UTC Theatre Production Staff:
Larry Brick (IATSE), is Technical Specialist.
Kay Hobgood, Administrative Assistant III.
Adjunct faculty include the following:
Jessie Bonanno (B.F.A., Brenau University) teaches Dance Technique.
Kate Forbes-Dallimore (M.F.A., New York University) teaches Introduction to Theatre.
Stevie Ray Dallimore (B.F.A., University of Utah) teaches Introduction to Performance.
Emily Heilig (M.F.A. University of of North Carolina) teaches Costume Construction and Introduction to Theatre.
Mary LaBianca (M.F.A., Mills College) teaches dance and is Director of Dance Education in the Southeast Center for Education in the Arts.
Colleen LaLiberte (West Liberty State University, Loose Moose Theatre Co.) teaches improvisation.
Alice McCormack (M.A., University of Georgia) is an instructor in Speech.
Laurie Melnick (M.F.A. University of Central Florida) teaches Theatre Education.
Vincent Phipps ( M.A., Liberty University) teaches Public Speaking.
Katie Schwartz (M.A., Vanderbilt University) teaches public speaking.
Anthony Sims (M.F.A., Ohio University) teaches film classes.
Anne Swedberg (M.F.A. University of Louisville, PhD., University of Wisconsin-Madison) teaches Introduction to Performance.
Rodney Van Valkenberg (M.F.A., University of North Carolina, Greensboro) is director of educational programs for Allied Arts of Chattanooga and teaches Intro to Theatre.
Sonia Young (M.Ed., University of Chattanooga) teaches Public Speaking.