School of Theatre & Music: New Teachers & Classes Part 1

faces

We have many exciting new faces and classes. The School of Theatre & Music is here for it all. Improv, Music, Makeup, Acting, Open Mic, Barn Dance, Busking & Drag – unlock a new talent with us this fall!

Chad Crenshaw

Chad is a Kansas City-based professional actor, improviser, writer and director. He brings personality and life to the stage and screen comedically and dramatically. This last year you could see him on several big commercial campaigns as an alligator wrangler for Carvana and a leprechaun for Nebraska Lottery. He was in the feature film Accidental Family and had a co-starring role on NBC’s Chicago Fire. He is passionate about his wife, his dog and his motorcycle (not always in that order). Last seen in 2017’s production of Billy Elliot. Recently, Chad returned to the Lawrence Arts Center stage in the role of Dewey, popularized by Jack Black, in School of Rock, the Musical.

Chris Molla

Chris composes for instrumental ensembles, writes songs, makes electro-acoustic music, sound art of various types, and does sound design. He was a founding member of the now venerable, though still notorious Camper Van Beethoven.
In his 30 years as a music educator, he has worked with students ranging from infants to college undergraduates.
Current projects include an ongoing collaboration with his wife, writer and artist Jessica Molla. They write, record and perform as Small Birds of Sound.

Chris holds a BA in music from UC Santa Cruz, and an MA in music composition from Mills College (but the doesn’t hold them too tightly). Then there’s that MFA in digital arts and new media from UCSC, for which he focused on sound art and theater sound design. His teachers in composition and theory include Anthony Braxton, Robert Ashley, Gordon Mumma, David Cope, Mary Badarak, David Rosenboom, Ben Leeds Carson, and Rick Cox.

Devi Arkeketa

Devi has been involved as a makeup artist at haunted houses, amusement parks, and participating in short films around the Midwest since 2009. She has done makeup for Worlds of Fun’s Halloween Haunt since 2013 where she is entering her 10th season with Halloween Haunt.

Jill Allen

Jill has bachelors degrees in dance performance and physical therapy and almost 50 years experience, calling and teaching dances, mostly community dances, including contras, squares, family dance, residency in schools, English country dance, one-night stands, and caller’s workshops. She has 20 years experience playing piano for dances. Jill’s calling has been described as clear and efficient with an emphasis on fun, and an ability to adapt to any group or any situation.

Mercedes Lucero

Mercedes Lucero is an Afro-Latinx writer and the author of Stereometry (Another New Calligraphy 2018) and the chapbook, In the Garden of Broken Things (Flutter Press 2016). She is the winner of the Langston Hughes Creative Writing Award for Poetry and her writing can be found in New Ohio Review, Puerto del Sol, The Pinch, Heavy Feather Review, and Fourteen Hills among others. She holds a PhD in English Literature & Creative Writing from the University of Kansas and you can see more of her work at www.mercedeslucero.com.

Richard Renner

Richard has been the Busker Festival producer for over 15 years. He holds a degree in the from the University of Kansas. His performing career spans 48 states, Canada and Mexico. The Lawrence Busker Festival is the longest running and biggest Busker Festival in America.

Carma Lea

Carma Lea is a local non-binary drag performer. They are a co-producer of the monthly drag show at Replay Lounge since June 2022. They hosted a monthly bingo brunch at RPG, and will be hosting bingo brunch at The Burger Stand starting in September.  Carma Lea is a member of Foxy by Proxy Revue, a local burlesque troupe, and was a guest performer at the 2023 Naka-Kon cosplay burlesque show. They were a finalist for Best of Lawrence 2023.

In addition to performing, Carma Lea is a PhD student in atmospheric science and a teaching assistant at the University of Kansas. They also are a member of a local queer-incisive and nerd-centric production company, Pocket Potato Productions, which hosts monthly trivia, drag, board game events, murder mystery parties, and more.

Chris Kramer

Chris has spent the past two years studying and performing as part of the Improv Troupe class, and he was recently a performer in “My Name is Loofa Tutu”. As a teacher, Chris is looking forward to facilitating play, experimentation, and a healthy amount of absurdity.

Financial Aid is available through the front desk. Call 785-843-2787.

We are also a qualified education service provider, and preferred vendor for Kansas KEEP (Kansas Education Enrichment Program). Click the LINK for more details.

Questions? email justin@lawrenceartscenter.org