Bob Adams was the head of the Drama Department at Pebblebrook High School (CCCEPA), Cobb County’s performing arts magnet school for twenty-five years before retiring in 2022. He holds a bachelor’s degree in theatre performance from Miami University (Ohio) and a master’s degree in theatre from The University of Missouri. During his tenure at CCCEPA, he directed over fifty plays and musicals. As an actor, Mr. Adams has worked regionally with theatres in Missouri and Minnesota, Atlanta’s Alliance Theatre, and the City Springs Theatre Company. His voiceover work has been heard on Atlanta radio and in commercials. In addition to his work at CCCEPA, Mr. Adams has directed productions at Spelman College and the Atlanta Lyric Theatre. Other directing and development work includes: MLK: A Monumental Life at Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C., and the development of In The Midnight Hour, a musical based on the life of Wilson Pickett, with the Alabama Shakespeare Festival. From 2000 – 2019, Mr. Adams served as the director of the ETC and Prompt summer camps in Cobb County. For more than a decade, he directed the annual Home For The Holidays production at the Cobb Civic Center’s Anderson Theatre. Mr. Adams has been selected Pebblebrook’s Teacher of the Year and was twice selected Pebblebrook’s STAR Teacher. While at Pebblebrook, his teaching work focused on the Meisner technique, Shakespearean acting, and musical theatre. His former students can be found performing on Broadway, London’s West End, television, film, national tours, regional theatres, and cruise lines throughout the world.
Grace Arnold graduated from The University of Alabama where she double majored in both Dance and Musical Theatre. As a Georgia native, she grew up performing in the Atlanta area and attended high school at CCCEPA. Some of her regional credits include Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Atlanta Lyric), A Chorus Line – Val (Virginia Samford), Guys and Dolls – Mimi (Highlands Playhouse), and Hairspray (City Springs Theatre Company). She was recently able to perform in two cabarets: “Luminous” and “Best of Broadway” with The Atlanta Lyric. She also recently performed in a gala (“And the Winner is…”) designed to raise money for those struggling with addiction through an organization called The Davis Direction. Teaching has always been a passion of Grace’s and she has gained experience by working with Prodigy Performing Arts, The Jennie T. Anderson Theatre, and City Springs. Additionally, she co-taught a Dance Lab for students at The University of Alabama. Grace loves being a part of the Atlanta community and is thrilled to be working with the CST students!
Le’Nay comes from a diverse background including classical theatre, contemporary stage and screen acting, along with choreography and dance. With a BFA in Acting and multiple television and commercial credits, Le’Nay has learned the importance of variety in her craft, as it pertains to making adjustments between stage and screen. From audition prep work, including slates and side readings, to contemporary and classical monologues and scenes, she is passionate about developing confidence and technique within her students. Le’Nay loves using her wealth of experience to help ambitious actors find their wings in comedy, drama, and everything in between.
Arielle is a proud graduate of The Cobb County Center for Excellence in the Performing Arts at Pebblebrook High School, and then went on to major in theatre at CCM: The University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music. Arielle has performed in and choreographed/assistant choreographed at numerous theatres in Atlanta including City Springs Theatre, The Atlanta Lyric Theatre, The Alliance Theatre, Georgia Ensemble Theatre, OnStage Atlanta, and more. Arielle has also taught dance at studios such as Dance101, Dance It Off, and British Academy of the Performing Arts.
Julia Johnson, soprano, is a classically trained singer, actor, musician, performer, and music teacher that performs professionally in international, national, and local landscapes. She made her NYC debut in concert at Carnegie Hall in 2017 and European debut as Violetta Valery in her favorite opera La traviata with Mediterranean Opera Festival in Italy.
Julia has performed with many companies in both operatic and musical theatre productions. Notable national and international performances include: Pamina in Die Zauberflöte with Manhattan Opera Festival; Estelle in the monologue opera The Stronger, and Lucy in The Telephone with Marble City Opera; Clorinda in La Cenerentola with Festival of International Opera of the Americas in Brazil; Julie Jordan in Carousel with Opera Breve; and Suor Genoveffa in Suor Angelica with MOF in Italy. Locally, notable performances include returning to the role of Violetta Valery (La traviata); Emma Crew in Jekyll and Hyde the musical; Leïla in Les pêcheurs de perles; Musetta in La bohème; Maddalena di Coigny in Andrea Chénier; Michaëla and Frasquita in Carmen; Fantine and Époninein Les misérables; and Countess Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro. Julia has also been a member of the Atlanta Opera Chorus since 2015.
Outside of opera and musical theatre, she has performed with various wedding and corporate event bands across the southeast and spent many years as a character performer with the Walt Disney World Co. Julia firmly believes that those who can do should teach. After receiving a Master of Music degree in Vocal Performance from Georgia State University in 2014, she has been teaching a variety of music lessons ranging from vocal development and audition prep for musical theatre professionals, to student voice and piano lessons, to leading a preschool choir and toddler tunes classes. Julia has always had a deep adoration for musical theatre and fell in love with classical technique when she studied for her Bachelor of Arts in Music, Vocal Performance degree from Auburn University.
Liz LeGrande is a free-spirited, loving soul inspired by the magic and mystery of life. She is passionate about supporting others in living out their fullest potential. As a dancer, choreographer, & movement coach, Liz collaborated with artists, including Katy Perry, Ye, Beyonce, Usher, Thomas Rhett, Christina Aguilera, Robin Thicke, Saweetie, Iggy Azalea, Ty Dolla Sign, Chayanna & Ciara. Her work has taken her to a wide variety of outlets, including films & television shows such as Glee, Dancing With The Stars, Bunheads, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Shake It Up, America’s Best Dance Crew, Empire, Step Up Highwater, Joyride, Genius, Dear Eleanor & Behind The Candelabra. Liz is a licensed wellness coach specializing in breathwork and movement therapy. Her breathwork and dance practices have a full-time scientific advisor, including dual-qualified MD and Neuroscience Ph.D., who have helped Liz design an evidence-based meditation dance practice. Upon returning to the states, she traveled the nation, visiting 100 public high schools on a mission to empower thousands of teenagers through dance and meditation. This experience cracked her heart wide open.
Meet Georgia native and passionate dance instructor, Estef Martín. Estef’s journey in the world of dance began at a young age, fueled by her love and respect for movement and expression.
Her mother recognized Estef’s joy and soon registered her at their local dance studio. There, Estef began training in Ballet, Contemporary Dance, Tap, Jazz, Hip-Hop, and Musical Theatre, while also attending touring workshops and masterclasses throughout the U.S. for fourteen years until the age of 18. Her desire for performance education continued in the great buildings that make up the Gainesville Theatre Alliance. Her credits there include, Men on Boats, Legally Blonde: The Musical, Pippin, Living Out, and 9 to 5: The Musical. Estef’s skills have also been showcased here at City Springs in “West Side Story” directed by Daniel Kutner, and “In The Heights” directed by Natalie Caruncho. Since 2020, Estef has defined her personal style and techniques while training and premiering with dance companies such as Keith Wilder Jr.’s WLD ATL, and most recently, Frankie Freeman & Mighty Paul’s Music and Movement.
While she is still passionate for teaching studio dancers, Estef is now in her era of somatic movement and holistic arts. Through self-education and training under choreographer and mindfulness practitioner Liz LeGrande, she has been called to bring people together, and breathe. Estef hopes that through intentional breath and movement, we can all find a deeper alignment with our truest selves, and move through spaces with love and light.
Grammy Winning Singer and Author, Jay Hunter Morris came into the National spotlight when he created the role of Anthony in Terrence McNally’s Tony Award winning Best PlayMaster Class,on Broadway in 1995. Career highlights include performances in Sydney, Melbourne, San Francisco, Santa Fe, Los Angeles, Paris, Monte Carlo, Budapest, Tokyo, Nice, Strasbourg, Frankfurt, Vienna, Beijing, Rome, The Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall. He famously starred asSiegfriedat the Metropolitan Opera in their new production by Robert LePage, which was broadcast live to cinemas worldwide, and won a Grammy for Best Opera Recording. Jay studied at Juilliard and has created roles in eight World Premiere Operas, and numerous works for Concert and Orchestra. He has been active in Voice Over and Studio Work in Nashville, New York City, and Los Angeles as a Vocalist in Commercials, Classical, Country, Gospel, and Jazz, for more than 30 years, and has been a featured artist on PBS Great Performances, CBS Sunday Morning, and Live from the Lincoln Center. He has given Master Classes all over the world, inspiring audiences with his unbridled enthusiasm and passion for the Arts. In 2013 his book, Diary of a Redneck Opera Zingerwas published by Opera Lively.
Bill Newberry is a music director, actor, singer, voice teacher and vocal coach from Atlanta, Georgia. He has been working with young performers basically all of his adult life. After a successful career teaching the arts in a private school, Bill began his professional theatre career as kids’ music director on the first national tour of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. On returning to Atlanta, he became a sought-after music director in the Atlanta theatre community. Over the years he has worked as a music director/actor at most of the major Atlanta theatre, including the Alliance, Actor’s Express, Theatre of the Stars, The Atlanta Lyric theatre, and Georgia Ensemble Theatre. In addition, Bill has music directed on over a dozen national tours, among them the world premieres of Diusney’s High School Musical I and II, Les Miserables, The King and I, Joseph/Dreamcoat, Annie, and Beauty and the Beast. Bill has been a voice teacher/vocal coach for over twenty years; his students have gone on to major success on The Voice, American Idol, and in TV, movies, and Broadway. He also has been the music director for Camp Broadway, a national organization of theatre camps, for over twenty years, and he also founded and was artistic and music director for the Fox Theatre’s Rising Stars Musical Theatre Intensive; Bill also was on the faculty of City Springs Theatre’s Virtually Broadway Intensive this summer. Bill’s philosophy of teaching is using solid technique and acting skills to craft a total performance in each song his students learn.
Jordan Pretorius is a professional dancer, instructor, and choreographer in the Atlanta area. With a technical background, Jordan has trained with various ballet companies such as the Bolshoi Ballet, National Ballet of Canada, and the School of American Ballet. For years she also trained in the styles of jazz, hip hop, musical theatre, tap, modern, contemporary. After graduating she went on to be a featured dancer for Norwegian Cruise Line for a couple of years. Since then she’s danced for various tv series such as Step Up: High Water and The First Lady (coming soon). Theatre credits include: Ever After (Alliance Theatre), Mary Poppins, 42nd Street, and Elf (City Springs Theatre Co.), West Side Story, and Shrek the Musical (Atlanta Lyric Theatre), Swing! the Musical (Directed by Lynne Taylor-Corbett, Norwegian Cruise Line). She’s also choreographed award winning works for numerous competitions, recitals, and events.
Kristine Reese has performed on Broadway, National Tours, regional theatre houses and concert venues across the globe. She is best known for playing Catherine on the Tony-Award winning National Tour of PIPPIN and Nessarose in the original Second National touring company of WICKED. She has also appeared on the National Tours of FINDING NEVERLAND (Mary Barrie) and MAMMA MIA! and made her Broadway debut in the 2006 revival of Les Miserables. Regional theatre credits include Theatreworks Silicon Valley, Kansas City Starlight, the St. Louis MUNY, Music Theatre Wichita and City Springs Theatre. Kristine has performed as a vocal soloist with dozens of international pop and symphony orchestras, including the Indianapolis Symphony, the Cleveland Symphony, the Cincinnati Pops and the National Symphony. For more visit www.kristinereese.com.
Haden graduated with a BA Theatre degree from the University of North Georgia/Brenau University in the Gainesville Theatre Alliance training program. As of late, he has been working as a professional actor and voice teacher/vocal pedagogue in the Atlanta regional theatre market. Some of Haden’s most recent credits include The Hunchback of Notre Dame-Quasimodo [Suzi Bass Award, Outstanding Lead Actor- Musical] (Aurora/Theatrical Outfit), Billy Elliot– Tony Elliot (City Springs Theatre Company), Aida– Radames (Atlanta Lyric Theatre). Haden is a recipient of the Junior Theatre Festival Teacher Spirit Award. Haden is also a proud member of the Freddie G. Fellowship (A national organization of Children’s Theatre teachers). Haden is co-founder/director of Play On Players Children’s Theatre. Play On Players has had the privilege of piloting various Broadway Jr. musicals/World Premiere-New Works such as Madagascar Jr., Mary Poppins Jr., and Newsies Jr. (upcoming). Haden is a Suzi Bass Award winner for “Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical”. Haden has been teaching private voice lessons of varying ages for 8 years. He teaches/coaches a vast amount of styles including: Musical Theatre, Pop/Rock, and Opera. Haden believes that a classically based method will give more freedom to a voice and will allow it to achieve its greatest potential within any style that a student wants to venture off into. His preferred method of choice is “Garcia Vocal Method or Garcia Technique”. The technique will focus heavily on proper breath support, proper body alignment (Alexander Technique), the importance of resonance through space creation/complete relaxation, and a thorough understanding of how to sing naturally and effectively without putting strain on the vocal chords.
Erin Shepherd has had the pleasure of helping students develop their full voice for over 20 years. Through technique, artistry, and expression, she encourages singers to communicate and tell story through song. Erin believes that the student and teacher are an artistic team, and actively includes the student in decision-making during the learning process: be it repertoire choices or technical preferences. Her specialties include teaching mix-belt; navigating register changes; a full, open sound throughout the voice; and most importantly, joyful, free singing.
Billy Tighe has performed on Broadway, the West End, National Tours, Off-Broadway and many of the country’s most prestigious regional theaters. He made his Broadway debut in PIPPIN and starred as Elder Price in the West End production of THE BOOK OF MORMON. He has toured North America in five Broadway National Tours including: JM Barrie in FINDING NEVERLAND, Fiyero in WICKED, Jean-Michel in LA CAGE AUX FOLLES, Elder Price in THE BOOK OF MORMON and DIRTY DANCING. He played Anthony Hope in the critically acclaimed, immersive Off-Broadway production of SWEENEY TODD at Barrow Street and has originated roles in the upcoming Broadway-aimed productions of HEART OF ROCK AND ROLL and THE SECRET OF MY SUCCESS. Regional theatre credits include Paper Mill Playhouse, The Old Globe, Paramount Theatre, St. Louis MUNY, Ogunquit Playhouse, Goodspeed Opera House, Marriott Theater, North Carolina Theater.
Katie Berger Wood is a theatre educator, playwright, and musician originally from Lexington, Kentucky. She has performed and taught all over the country and holds her Master’s degree in Theatre Education from University of Northern Colorado. With students, she specializes in musical theatre, creative drama, and devised work. Her original musicals have been produced in Tampa and New York City, and her most recent work, Willow Wood, will have its world premiere in Nashville this summer! When she’s not at the theatre, you can find her with her nose in a book.
APPLY TO JOIN OUR CONSERVATORY FACULTY!
City Springs Theatre Company is always seeking qualified teachers to serve as faculty for our conservatory programs. Potential candidates will have professional experience in the fields of vocal instruction (group and private), acting, dance, and technical theatre and be available to teach weekly and semester-long classes. A college degree in theatre, voice, dance, technical theatre, or education required. Master’s degree preferred. Classes are currently offered for students ages 10-18.