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WHO WE ARE

The TheaterMakers Studio was founded by Tony Award-Winning Broadway Producer, Ken Davenport to help aspiring and established theater-makers get their shows from the page to the stage. Our training courses walk you through various aspects essential to making theater, including the process of turning your idea into a polished script ready for submission, getting a reading up of your show, all the way to complete production. The resources available on this site will aid you on your path to production every step of the way.

– A Message from Ken Davenport, Founder of The TheaterMakers Studio

KEN DAVENPORT

TONY AWARD -WINNING BROADWAY PRODUCER &
FOUNDER OF THE THEATERMAKERS STUDIO

Ken is a Tony Award-winning producer of Broadway and Off-Broadway shows, including most recently A Beautiful Noise: The Neil Diamond Musical, Once on This Island (2018 Tony Award Best Musical Revival), Gettin’ the Band Back Together, Groundhog Day: The Musical, Deaf West’s Spring Awakening, and The Play That Goes Wrong. Davenport has revolutionized the Broadway market with his diverse approaches at engaging audiences through his shows, as well as supported the Broadway ecosystem through a number of his own subsidiary businesses. He is an internationally recognized and award-winning writer of several Broadway and Off-Broadway shows as well as several books about producing, Broadway investing, and how to raise money for shows. Additionally, he is the Executive Producer for North America for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Really Useful Group.

MONICA HAMMOND

CEO OF THE THEATERMAKERS STUDIO

Monica is a Serial Entrepreneur and Theatrical Marketing Professional. She is the Founder of Big Leap Brands, a Marketing and Consulting Agency designed to help fellow Entertainment Entrepreneurs grow and scale their businesses. She is also the Founder and CEO of Broadway Murder Mysteries and Curious Custom. She is the former Artistic Associate of The Attic Theater Company, which produced dozens of shows in New York City for it's decade-long span. 

Before becoming CEO of The TheaterMakers Studio, Monica held the role of Director of Marketing for Tony Award-Winning Broadway Producer, Ken Davenport for nearly a decade, working on various Broadway and Off-Broadway shows, including but not limited to, the Tony Award-Winning revival of Once On This Island, A Beautiful Noise: The Neil Diamond Musical, Deaf West’s Spring Awakening, It’s Only A Play, Gettin’ The Band Back Together, as well as the National Tour of A Night With Janis Joplin. Off Broadway: AndrĂ© & Dorine, Tammany Hall, That Bachelorette Show, The Awesome 80s Prom, and Daddy Long Legs.

SUMMER GROH

CLIENT RELATIONS & SALES MANAGER

Summer has been involved professionally in the theatre and television industry having worked in Production, Marketing, and Management for The Rachael Ray Show, The New Victory Theater and Florida Repertory Theatre. Summer currently resides in Orlando, Florida where she proudly manages client relations and sales for The TheaterMakers Studio. Her freelance photography and promotional video work has been featured in American Theatre Magazine, The News-Press, Florida Weekly, Happenings Magazine, Broadwayworld, and several theatrical show sites and blogs including nationally acclaimed Wall Street Journal drama critic, Terry Teachout’s About Last Night.

 

 

JONATHAN HOGUE

PRODUCER / WRITER / DIRECTOR

Jonathan (he/him) is a producer, writer, and director with a specialty in new work development and creative branding. He carries 4+ years of experience in Executive, Administrative, Marketing, and Production Assistant positions on Broadway as well as with Williamstown Theatre Festival, the Joffrey Ballet School, Bartle Bogle Hegarty, and Production Glue, and is currently completing his MFA in Theatre Management & Producing at Columbia University. He is also the writer (book/score) and lead producer of Stranger Sings! The Parody Musical (Winner - 2021 BroadwayWorld Off-Broadway Award for Best New Musical) now playing a hit extended run off-Broadway, with international productions running concurrently in the UK and Australia. Other projects in development include Camp Nightmare, a jukebox parody musical riffing on 1980's slasher films; and The Nations, a drama loosely based on his experiences as an aid worker across three continents, which received its virtual world-premiere in Spring 2021. He has also produced the NY Premiere of Jay Stull's The Singularity Play (Columbia University New Play Festival 2022) as well as a series of virtual one-acts for Theatrical Resources Unlimited’s 2021 TRUSpeak Benefit (featuring Ann Harada, Brenda Braxton, and Robert Cuccioli), and has served as a reader for the TRU Voices and Williamstown Theatre Festival Weissberger New Play awards. As a multihyphenate theatre artist, Jonathan is passionate about guiding the development process of new works with creativity and efficiency, and loves supporting writers and producers in the process of bringing their artistic vision to full life.

ERIC C. WEBB

DIRECTOR OF CREATIVE DEVELOPMENT / WRITER / DRAMATURG

Eric is a NYC based writer and dramaturg whose plays and musicals have been produced in NYC and Tokyo. As a dramaturg, Eric has worked with The TheaterMakers Studio and Ken Davenport since 2013 as Director of Creative Development, aiding hundreds of writers and composers in achieving their goals of moving from the page to the stage. Eric also previously served as Artistic Director for March Forth Productions, Literary and Marketing Manager for La Vie Productions, and Dramaturg for Young Playwrights, Inc. Writing projects in development include Rise (with composer Scott Wilkinson), Breakup - The Musical (with composer Stephanie Bianchi), and Thompson/Gifford. Previous writing credits include #JustBeYou (Random Farms Kids’ Theater, JOY Kids’ Theater), A White Man’s Guide to Rikers Island (Players Theater, Gene Frankel Theater), “Orion” (short film), The Angels of Mons (March Forth Productions/Horsetrade at Theater Under St. Marks).

KENNY LEON

DIRECTOR 

Kenny Leon is a Tony Award-winning Broadway and film director. His Broadway credits include the 2014 revival of A Raisin in the Sun starring Denzel Washington (Tony Award-winner for Best Direction of a Play and Best Revival), The Mountaintop starring Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett, Stick Fly produced by Alicia Keys, August Wilson’s Fences (which garnered ten Tony nominations and won three Tony Awards including Best Revival), the 2004 revival of A Raisin in the Sun with Sean P. Diddy Combs, Gem of the Ocean, Radio Golf and the 2014 premiere of Holler if You Hear Me, a new musical created using the music of Tupac Shakur. Leon’s recent film work includes “In My Dreams” for Hallmark Hall of Fame, “The Watsons go to Birmingham” for Walden Media and Hallmark, and the Sony and Lifetime TV adaptation of “Steel Magnolias”. Leon is the recipient of numerous awards including the 2010 Julia Hansen Award for Excellence in Directing by the Drama League of New York.

DAVID HENRY HWANG

WRITER

David Henry Hwang’s stage works includes the plays M. Butterfly, Chinglish, Yellow Face, Kung Fu, Golden Child, The Dance and the Railroad, and FOB, as well as the Broadway musicals Elton John & Tim Rice’s Aida (co-author), Flower Drum Song (2002 revival) and Disney’s Tarzan. Hwang is a Tony Award winner and three-time nominee, a three-time OBIE Award-winner, and a three-time Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. He is also the most-produced living American opera librettist, whose works have been honored with two Grammy Awards, co-wrote the Gold Record Solo with the late pop icon Prince, and worked from 2015-2019 as a Writer/Consulting Producer for the Golden Globe-winning television series The Affair.

He is currently writing the live-action musical feature film The Hunchback of Notre Dame for Disney Studios and a movie to star actress Gemma Chan. Hwang serves on the Board of the Lark Play Development Center, as Head of Playwriting at Columbia University School of the Arts, and as Chair of the American Theatre Wing, founder of the Tony Awards. M. Butterfly recently returned to Broadway in a revival directed by Julie Taymor, which marked Mr. Hwang’s eighth Broadway production.

His newest work, Soft Power, a collaboration with composer Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home), premiered at Los Angeles’ Ahmanson Theatre, where it won six Ovation Awards. Its subsequent run at the Public Theatre in NYC received four Outer Critics Honors, eleven Drama Desk Nominations, a Grammy nomination for Best Musical Theatre Album, and was a finalist for the 2020 Pulitzer Prize in Drama.

SUSAN STROMAN

DIRECTOR

A five-time Tony Award-winning director and choreographer, Stroman has been honored with Olivier, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, Lucille Lortel, and a record five Astaire Awards. She made her Metropolitan Opera debut in 2014, directing and choreographing The Merry Widow.

Most recently she directed and choreographed the new musical Little Dancer for the Kennedy Center. She directed and choreographed The Producers, winner of a record-making 12 Tony Awards including Best Direction and Best Choreography. Her direction and choreography for the critically acclaimed musical The Scottsboro Boys continues to garner praise, with her recent production in London’s West End winning the Evening Standard Award for Best Musical. She co-created, directed, and choreographed the Tony Award-winning musical Contact for Lincoln Center Theater.

Other Broadway credits include Bullets Over Broadway, Big Fish, Crazy for You, Show Boat, Oklahoma!, Young Frankenstein, The Frogs, The Music Man, Thou Shalt Not, and Steel Pier. Off-Broadway credits include The World Goes ‘Round, Flora the Red Menace, and Happiness. She has created ballets for New York City Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, and Martha Graham Company. She is the recipient of the George Abbott Award for Lifetime Achievement in the American Theater and a 2014 Inductee of the Theater Hall of Fame.

MARA ISAACS

PRODUCER

Mara Isaacs is a Tony and Grammy Award-winning producer and founder of Octopus Theatricals, an independent production company dedicated to fostering an expansive range of compelling theatrical works for local, national, and international audiences.  She has produced over 150 productions that have been seen on Broadway (Hadestown, The Inheritance, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, Translations, Anna in the Tropics, Electra), off-Broadway (Hadestown, Fiasco Theater’s Into The Woods, The Brother/Sister Plays, Crowns, The Laramie Project), at theaters and performing arts centers around the US and the world (UK, Europe, Asia, Middle East, South America, South Africa, Canada).

In 2019, she co-founded Sing It Again Records, winning a Grammy Award with their first release, the Original Broadway Cast Recording of Hadestown. Current projects include Social! A Social Distance Dance Club (created by David Byrne, Steven Hoggett and Christine Jones); Theatre For One; Dreaming Zenzile by Somi Kakoma; Iphigenia by Wayne Shorter and Esperanza Spalding; Bill Irwin’s On Beckett; Activist Songbook by Byron Au Yong and Aaron Jafferis; And So We Walked by DeLanna Studi; and An Iliad starring Denis O’Hare. Mara is proud to produce the work of Phantom Limb Company, Song of the Goat Theatre and more, and serves as Artistic Advisor to Fiasco Theater. She served as Producing Director at McCarter Theater Center in Princeton, NJ for 18 seasons and previously produced new play development programs and productions for Center Theatre Group/Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles. www.octopustheatricals.com

JACK VIERTEL

WRITER / DRAMATURG

Jack Viertel is the senior vice president of Jujamcyn Theaters, which owns and operates five Broadway theaters. He has been involved in dozens of productions presented by Jujamcyn since 1987, including multiple Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winners, from City of Angels to Angels in America. He has also helped shepherd six of August Wilson’s plays to Broadway. He was the Mark Taper Forum’s dramaturg and the drama critic and arts editor of the Los Angeles Herald Examiner, and he has spent a decade teaching musical theater at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University.

TELLY LEUNG

ACTOR

Telly was born and raised in New York City. He grew up in a traditional Chinese home in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. He is a proud alumni of New York’s prestigious math & science specialized high school, Stuyvesant High School. After Stuyvesant, Telly was admitted to Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Drama (CMU), where he received most of his formal training in acting, singing, and dance. It was also at CMU that Telly met fellow CMU-alum and Kinky Boots Tony Award-winner, Billy Porter, who returned to his alma mater to direct the main stage production of Sondheim’s Company. After casting Telly as Bobby in Company, Porter made a phone call to his colleagues who were involved in the upcoming Broadway revival of Flower Drum Song and landed Telly an audition. In the fall of 2002, Telly made his Broadway debut in the revival of Flower Drum Song, starring Lea Salonga, as a member of the ensemble and an understudy for Wang Ta.

JILL RAFSON

CREATIVE PRODUCER / DRAMATURG

Jill is currently the Producing Artistic Director at Classic Stage Company.

Previously, she worked with Roundabout Theatre Company since 2005, most recently serving as Associate Artistic Director as well as Artistic Producer for Roundabout Underground, an acclaimed program supporting productions from early-career playwrights. She has developed dozens of new plays and musicals for Roundabout, with highlights including Stephen Karam’s Tony-winning The Humans; Steven Levenson’s If I Forget; Joshua Harmon’s hit Bad Jews; Adam Gwon’s musicals Ordinary Days and Scotland, PA; Ming Peiffer’s Drama Desk-nominated Usual Girls; and Sanaz Toossi’s award-winning English.

Jill has been a dramaturg for several commercial musical projects and at institutions including the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, The Flea, The Playwrights’ Center, Fault Line Theater, and more. She has worked for The Broadway League, New York City Center, and ART/NY. Jill was a member of NYFA’s Emerging Arts Leaders, later returning as a program mentor, and has taught/lectured for the Commercial Theater Institute, ESPA, Kenyon College, Columbia University, Hunter College, and others. Jill received her BA from Johns Hopkins University and a Graduate Certificate in Fundraising Management from Boston University.

AMBER IMAN

ACTOR / PRODUCER / WRITER

Broadway: Shuffle Along, Soul Doctor. Off-Broadway: A Civil War Christmas, RENT. National Tour: Hamilton (1st National, Peggy Schuyler/Maria Reynolds). Favorite Regional Credits: Mame in Radio Golf (Two River Theatre Company), Joy in Witness Uganda (The Wallis, LA Ovation Award Winner for Best Featured Actress in a Musical), Cheryl in Stick Fly (Arena Stage, IRNE Award Nominee for Best Supporting Actress), Aldonza in Man of La Mancha (Shakespeare Theatre, Helen Hayes Award nomination for Outstanding Actress & Emery Battis Award for Acting Excellence). Howard University Graduate (2016 James Butcher Alumni Award).

Proud founding member of the Broadway Advocacy Coalition and co-founder of Black Women On Broadway. In 2018, Amber wrote, executive produced, and starred in her first short film, “Steve.” Her proudest accomplishment to date, “Steve” has won awards for Best Short, Best Comedy, and Best Actress at multiple film festivals across the country.

TYLER MOUNT

PRODUCER

Tyler Mount is a Tony Award-winning producer and one of the industry’s most noted social influencers. As the creator of The Tyler Mount Vlog, he has been seen by over three million people in 168 countries world-wide, and has served as an influencer for hundreds of Broadway productions and prestigious international brands. Featured by both the New York times and Forbes magazine, his series has featured such noted industry professionals including Gloria Estefan, Perez Hilton, Jerry Mitchell, Lin Manuel-Miranda, and Billy Porter.

Currently the Senior Manager of Social Media at NBC Universal, Tyler is an industry-leading expert in growing your social following and reaching your target audience. His work in the theatre community is far-reaching, serving as an influencer and spokesperson for such esteemed organizations as the Junior Theatre Festival, BroadwayCon, The Drama League, and The Tony, Grammy and Olivier Awards.

Mount’s Broadway credits include: Hadestown, The Inheritance, Once On This Island, On Your Feet: The Story of Emilio & Gloria Estefan, An American in Paris, Viva Broadway: Gloria Estefan LIVE!, and The Cradle Will Rock starring Patti LuPone.

Follow his Broadway journey all year long – @TylerGMount

MANDY GONZALEZ

ACTOR 

A Drama Desk and OBIE Award-winning actress, Mandy is best known for her emotional portrayal of Nina Rosario in the original cast of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Tony Award-winning hit musical In the Heights, she also starred as Elphaba in Wicked (Broadway). TV/Film: “Madam Secretary,” “Quantico,” “Doubt,” “The Good Wife,” “White Collar,” Viral, After, Man on a Ledge, and Across the Universe. Broadway: AIDA, Lennon, Dance of the Vampires. Mandy has performed with prestigious symphonies across the country and around the world.

JAY MICHAELS

PRODUCER / PR REP

Jay began his career during the original off-off Broadway and underground movements in New York City and has become one of indie theatre and films’ most visible personalities. Beginning as a special events assistant at the New York Daily News and PBS, he moved on to positions including promotional staff for The Joyce Theater’s Drama Desk Award-winning American Theater series; national tour manager for Cats, Edwin Drood, and Les Miserables; a television media buying associate; senior event marketing executive for international galas and fundraisers including speechwriting for the Weisslers, the Nederlander and Shubert organizations, James Earl Jones, Jon Stewart, Vera Wang, Mayors Lindsay and Dinkins; and Hillary Clinton to name a few. Michaels also managed promotional events for Broadway shows, Guys & Dolls (1992), Damn Yankees (1994), Vagina Monologues (2005) and Beginnings (2018) as well as Audra McDonald at Broadway’s Town Hall (2019). His boutique PR firm, Jay Michaels Global Communications, services a vast array of independent international talent and their projects. JMGC is in partnership with three television stations – ACW-TV, IFT Network, Inc. and now, PACO Global Entertainment. Michaels served as on-air film and classic TV commentator for Sun Studios’ Terror TV; Octane Media’s Trek Talk; and currently with Fantastic Television for the Boston Sci-Fi Channel; “the face” of FearCon TV; and star of ACW-TV’s Jay Watch. He is also host of Under the Influence and In the PassionPit podcasts and the Classic Cinema Challenge. Jay Michaels is a professor of communications at several universities and a published author.

KEN CERNIGLIA

DRAMATURG 

Ken Cerniglia is a veteran dramaturg, writer, creative consultant, and organizational leader. His dramaturgy is most prominently reflected in the innovative Broadway hits Hadestown by Anaïs Mitchell (8 Tony Awards, including Best Musical) and Peter and the Starcatcher by Rick Elice (5 Tony Awards), whose popularity since its iconic premiere production has spawned over 2000 licensed productions around the world.

During his 16 years as Disney Theatrical Productions’ resident dramaturg and literary manager, Ken developed over 70 titles for Broadway, touring, international, and licensed productions, including The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Freaky Friday, Aladdin, Newsies, The Little Mermaid, High School Musical, and Tarzan. He adapted young-performer librettos for Beauty and the Beast JR., The Little Mermaid JR., The Lion King JR., The Lion King KIDS, and Aladdin JR. Ken conceived and developed Marvel Spotlight, a collection of one-act plays that feature teenage super heroes tackling real-world problems in a diverse society. He also wrote scripts for over a dozen Disney on Broadway concerts for special events and Disney Cruises, and edited the “making of” books Peter and the Starcatcher: The Annotated Broadway Play (2012) and Newsies: Stories of the Unlikely Broadway Hit (2013).

Freelance dramaturgy credits include the new musical The Remarkable Journey to Tianguo (regional premiere 2021), the chamber opera Blood Moon (2020 PROTOTYPE Festival, NYC); the new musical Bridges (Berkeley Playhouse); Monticello Wakes and Passion Trilogy, which he also directed (Fisher Ensemble/Loyola Marymount University); and Bud, Not Buddy, The Gift of Nothing, The Cricket in Times Square, and OLIVERio: A Twist on Dickens (Kennedy Center). Ken recently crossed the border of dramaturgy into musical book writing for the new musical Atlantis, which premiered in 2019 at Virginia Repertory Theatre, directed by Kristin Hanggi.

In addition to creative work, Ken has a thing for organizations, initiatives, and education. He is immediate past president of Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas (LMDA), co-founder of the American Theatre Archive Project, and Artistic Director of Two Turns Theatre Company. He is a graduate of UC San Diego, The Catholic University of America, and the University of Washington, where he earned a Ph.D. in theatre history and criticism. Although he hasn’t (yet) become the theatre professor he imagined, Ken gets his fix as a regular guest lecturer, artist, facilitator, and adjudicator at conferences, universities, and festivals around the world.

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THE THEATERMAKERS STUDIO

1501 Broadway

New York, NY 10036

Phone: 877-806-9969

Email: [email protected]