Steve Criss '97
Marketing Director, Warner Theatre
Criss oversees all marketing, sales and public relations initiatives for the Warner Theatre, the only performing arts center in northwest Connecticut. The complex includes the historic Warner Theatre, a black box-style studio theatre, a performing arts school, a costume and theatrical properties production and rental facility, and a restaurant and microbrewery. The Warner operates year-round, with more than 160 performances each season. Criss also sits on the board of directors of the Western Connecticut Convention & Visitors Bureau and is chairman of Arts.Culture.Torrington, the city’s municipally-chartered arts and culture commission, and the Northwest Connecticut Chamber of Commerce's Young Professionals Organization.
C. Richard Koster, Jr. '92
Theatre Arts and Public Speaking Teacher, Boston Public
While working professionally in several local and
regional theatre companies, Koster felt called to teach young performers. He
earned a master's degree in education and set off teaching inner-city learners
in English and reading. After discovering that theatre arts was a strong
component of teaching such a culturally diverse group with such a wide range of
abilities, Koster changed to theatre arts and public speaking full-time.
Besides producing many original and scripted performances, he has developed his
own curriculum focusing on literacy skills and language acquisition using
performance techniques. In 2010, Koster received the Sontag Prize for
excellence in urban education.
Magda K. Skomal '87
Executive Director, Interactive Educational Theatre, Inc.
Skomal founded the Interactive Educational Theatre, a
nonprofit improvisation touring company, to address social issues in a
creative, interactive manner. The company tours schools, correctional
facilities and community organizations, performing culturally sensitive,
educational presentations in an effort to create healthier communities. Topics
include bullying, HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, drugs and alcohol awareness as well as
sexual orientation, diversity and respect for all. Skomal has been recognized
by the Boston Globe and the New York Times as an expert in her field and is a
recipient of the Connecticut Commissioner’s AIDS Leadership Award.
Frederick J. Villari '88
Field Producer, "The Amazing Race"
Villari recently wrapped his fourth season as a
producer on "The Amazing Race." During his first season, the show received an
Emmy award for Best Reality Competition. Villari also worked as a line producer
on the Style Network's show "Split Ends" in 2007, and both he and the show
received daytime Emmy nominations for his work. He has worked on numerous
television shows that are familiar to viewers, including "The Mole," "LA Ink," "Breaking Bonaduce" and "Armed & Famous." He is currently in pre-production
for a new show for the Discovery Channel.