Our board members and staff are dedicated to the growth of the arts in both the community and younger generations. We believe in the power of the arts and that art is your power.
Bonnie Cox is from San Antonio, Texas and currently performs with Lux Boreal Compañía de Danza in Tijuana, Mexico where she also teaches and choreographs for Centro de Danza y Producción Escenica de Baja California. She received her MFA in Dance from The University of Colorado Boulder in Spring 2018 where she directed CU Contemporary Dance Works, taught contemporary dance technique, dance history, and dance theory. Bonnie has been teaching studio courses in Jazz, Ballet, Contemporary, Pointe, Lyrical, and Hip-Hop dance at various studios in Mexico, Colorado, and Texas for the last ten years. Bonnie has worked with acclaimed choreographers from Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, and Germany, and has performed in New York City, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Houston, and Denver. Bonnie received her BFA in dance from Texas State University in 2011 where she was a teaching assistant and member of Merge Dance Company. She danced with Diverse Space Dance Theater, Sharon Marroquin, Shay Ishii Dance Company and Nicole Roerick Collective in Austin, Texas. She was the artistic director of Dance To Empower, a social justice based dance company in Austin, Texas from 2011-2013. She was nominated for an Austin Chronicle critic’s choice award in 2013 for her production Silence to Power: Dance as a response to trauma, through which she encouraged dance artists to transform trauma and societal pressures into growth and power through performance and choreography. Bonnie continues to use dance to confront social issues and empowers her students to artistically express their authentic selves and give voice to issues that are important to them.
Dillon has been directing plays for as long as she can remember. As a kid, she recruited her siblings to act in living room productions. Growing up in Ojai, California, a community of artists, Dillon found a wealth of mentors to support her performing arts passion. In addition to styles and methods, her early teachers instilled in her a work ethic that continues to serve her today.
Out of high school, Dillon began building her directorial tool kit. She first moved to Los Angeles where she joined a professional performing arts group called the Young Americans. With YA’s, she trained as a professional musical theater performer. Next, Dillon was accepted to the University of California, Santa Barbara where she received her bachelor's degree in Theatre Arts. She traveled abroad after graduating to start a theatre program for a prep-school in Nottinghamshire, UK. With this accomplishment, she moved back home to design a multipurpose theater center and performing arts program for the renowned Ojai Valley School. Dillon’s work at both institutions increased enrollment and helped rejuvenate the schools’ summer programs.
After years of working with children and families, Dillon became increasingly moved by the therapeutic power of performing arts. With mental-health in mind, Dillon moved to Boston where she earned a master’s degree in Social Work form Wheelock College. During this time, she directed for the award-winning Watertown Children’s Theater and interned at an organization called, Playmakers. At Playmakers, a Life is Good-sponsored nonprofit, she trained caregivers to help children with trauma. In Boston and California, she also worked as a therapist for middle and high school-aged students.
When Dillon got back into theater full-time, she found her clinical education allowed her to create a uniquely transformative environment for performers. For the past seven years, Dillon has lived in Boulder with her two boys and served as the primary director for The Rocky Mountain Theatre for Kids and The Actors Academy for the Performing Arts. Dillon sees The Spark as both the culmination and beginning of her life’s work—an ethical performing arts space where invigorating and wonderful things happen.
Jenna graduated from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale in 2015, receiving a Masters of Music degree in Music Performance with an emphasis on collaborative piano. Undergraduate work was completed in 2013 at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, with a degree in piano performance. Jenna currently lives in New York City and is a faculty member of NYU Steinhardt. Recent collaborators include Kelli O’Hara, The Staples Players, Three Act Theatre, Polaris Productions, and Crystal Theatre. She is also musical director for McLeod Summer Playhouse in Carbondale, IL each summer.
Marla has had the pleasure to work as a director and choreographer for various theaters and films across the country. Her work explores the boundaries between dance and scene in musicals as well as plays, expanding the function of dance as a production element. Her research has seen practical applications in shows such as Adding Machine and Everyman at the University of Colorado-Boulder in collaboration with directors Dr. Cecilia Pang and Dr. Will Lewis respectively. Most recently her thesis production of Next to Normal enjoyed a sold out run in the Charlotte York Irey Theatre. Marla acted as both director and choreographer using movement to explore mental illness and trauma as it relates to the body. Other notable past productions include: Mary Poppins (Artisan Center Theatre), Peter and the Starcatcher (University of Colorado-Boulder), the Off-Broadway premier of A Pie Rat’s Tale (Three Act Theatre), and the Motif Awards Opening Performance (Walt Disney Concert Hall). Marla Schulz is currently completing her MFA in Dance from the University of Colorado at Boulder. As co-founder and treasurer to The Spark, she brings her administrative and management experience that was most recently seen as the Assistant Program Manager for the Northwest Conference of the American College Dance Association in 2018, which hosted over 500 guests at the CU- Boulder campus.
A native of Louisville, KY Nathaniel has slowly been making his way into the precessional world of theater and dance. Shortly after receiving his BFA from Southern Illinois University he went on to choreograph and star in numerous professional theaters such as Jenny Wiley, Stage Door Theatre and The Muny located in St. Louis. Some of his most notable roles include: Cain (Children of Eden), Judah (Joseph and the..Dreamcoat), Terk (Tarzan), Hip Hop Tap Dancer (Time Step), and ensemble tracks in The Muny’s 100th season in (The Wiz and Meet Me in St. Louis). He would like to thank his family and friends for always being so supportive!
Raymond Jaramillo McLeod has just returned from his fourth production at NSMT (Zorba, Christmas Carol, Annie). Mr. McLeod has appeared in 6 Broadway shows, making his debut with jekyll & Hyde. He has also sung with the Metropolitan Opera and many others. You can hear his dulcet tones on hundreds of movie soundtracks including 5 Disney movies (Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast, Little Mermaid, Nightmare Before Christmas, Pocahontas) and appeared in many TV episodes including Law and Order, One Life to Live and Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Mr. McLeod teaches voice in NYC and at Universities across the country and is the Education Director for Angel Fountain Education Endowment, Inc.
Mr. McLeod holds a Masters degree from the University of Texas in Vocal Performance.
Tanya has most recently been seen as Serena Katz in Fame Lab by Salgado Productions. Other notable credits include NBC Upfronts at Radio City Music Hall (singer), On Brand! at 54 Below (singer), Season's Greetings at the Eagle Theater (singer), Mile Long Opera on the High Line (singer), In The Heights with Salgado Productions (Daniela), and the lead soloist for Aida Cruise Line. Tanya graduated from Southern Illinois University with a BFA in Musical Theatre, and currently lives in New York City.
Terri holds a MA in Music, BA in Visual and Performing Arts, and National Board Certification in Teaching. She has taught private voice and piano for more than forty years and is a professional Music Director and Accompanist. Students of Ms. Schafer have been awarded numerous college scholarships and have been accepted to noted music theatre colleges around the country. Ms. Schafer is CEO of Showtime Productions Performing Arts, LLC., which is a performing arts education company that has developed New York Intensive trips escorting Broadway hopefuls to New York City for theatre workshops and shows. She also conducts and teaches music theatre workshops around the country. Ms. Schafer has taught choir and theatre in public schools for over 25 years and has directed over 75 stage productions for schools, private studios and community theatres. She has been selected for Who’s Who in American Teachers and Who’s Who in American Business Women. Ms. Schafer is a musician at the Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre and also works in their costume department. She is also teaching private voice for Curtain Call Studios in Fort Myers. She spends her summer teaching in Colorado and lives in Fort Myers, FL.