Our board members and staff are dedicated to the growth of the arts in the community and our youth. We believe in the power of the arts and that art is your power.

The Spark Artists

Dillon Kenyon
Co-Founder / Exec. Director / Director / Voice Teacher

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.  Dillon has lived in Boulder with her two boys since 2012. Locally, she worked as a director for The Rocky Mountain Theatre for Kids and The Actors Academy for the Performing Arts before starting the Spark.  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.  

dillon@thesparkcreates.org​

Mary Beth Ward
Director of Operations

Mary Beth Ward comes to The Spark community with 20 years experience in professional theater management and program development. In pursuit of the arts, education and a desire to inspire others to explore perspectives is at the fore front for this artist. Their work in youth development programs creates the most satisfying parts of their resume: Production Manager at GC Dance in San Diego; Program Manager at Rocky Mountain Theater for Kids in Boulder/Denver; Production Stage Manager at TADA! Youth Theatre in NYC; Theater Arts Program Director at Camp Cedarbrook and Arts Program Consultant for the Association of Cedarbrook Camps. It is with enthusiasm to continue sharing a passion for the arts that Mary Beth joins The Spark team.

Marybeth@thesparkcreates.org

Marla A. Schulz
Co-Founder / Choreographer / Teaching Artist

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.

Nikki Weber
Stage Manager / Performer / Teaching Artist

Nikki Weber has always been drawn to the performing arts. With a love for the unique experience of both performing onstage and working behind the scenes in a variety of roles, she found that no matter what life path one pursues, a foundation in performing arts absolutely comes in handy. After collaborating with talented professionals focused on a thorough, healthy approach to youth performance in her younger years, Nikki was inspired. She went on to graduate with a double major in Theater and Business Administration with a specialization in Vocal Performance at Eckerd College with the goal of working on the education and management side of theater. 


Nikki produced and directed a play for V-Day, a global movement committed to fighting domestic violence, the proceeds of which were donated to victims of abuse. She spent a semester studying drama in London, England and after graduating went on to perform locally in Florida -- most notably at Saint Petersburg City Theatre and the Saint Petersburg Shakespeare Festival. Recent credits include Jesus Christ Superstar (Mary Magdalene), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Puck), and Kimberly Akimbo (Debra). She has also been lucky to be featured onstage at The Spark in productions such as Fame and Songs for a New World


Since joining the Spark community in 2019, Nikki has stage managed multiple productions in addition to teaching classes. She also works one-on-one with students, primarily in audition prep work and character study. She loves helping young actors develop their talent, film a self-tape like the pros, and dive into creating unique characters through physicality and vocal work. Nikki is beyond excited for the opportunity to continue her work with such passionate and innovative artists and students!


Nikki@thesparkcreates.org

Amy Campion
Summer Tech Crew Teaching Artist

Amy Campion has been working in theatre in Colorado since 2005. She has been the Resident Set Designer and Scenic Artist at BDT Stage that entire time and has worked at a variety of other theaters along the Front Range. Favorite set designs include Ragtime and The Little Mermaid.  Amy also teaches technical theatre classes at Skyline High School in Longmont. Skyline has a Visual and Performing Arts focus, and she has enjoyed working with the talented students and staff there for the past three years. Amy holds an MFA in Technical Theatre from Illinois State University. She is excited to be part of live theatre this summer at the Spark!

Benjamin Kessler
Teaching Artist

Benjamin Is always ecstatic to be joining the Spark Family!  He is a colorado native, recent graduate of Metropolitan State University of Denver with a BA in Theater and a Minor in Speech Communications.  Benjamin is a lifelong teacher and learner and is always seeking ways to better himself and everyone around him.  He believes that the collective impact of our interaction and learning can, does, and will shape, change, and influence the world as we see it.  He is currently in his final semester of his Master of Fine Arts degree in Theater Pedagogy from the University of Idaho.  Some credits include, Odyssey, Love’s Labor’s Lost, Little Shop of Horrors, Company, You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown, 42nd Street, Guys and Dolls, 25th Annual Putnman County Spelling Bee, and so much more!  He teaches everything from stage craft to acting as well as private coaching and teaching.  There is not an aspect of theater arts that Benjamin has not had his hand in, and has loved every moment of his theatrical live.

Benjamin@thesparkcreates.org

Sara Mildenstein
Music Director/Teaching Artist

Sara began her music career by attempting to sing along with the radio in the bathtub at the age of two. Born into a family of non-musicians, she is grateful to have had her musical talents discovered at a young age by her church choir director, Darlene Bergman, who encouraged her parents to put her in piano lessons and to sing as much as possible. Her parents, despite not being musicians themselves, have supported her every step of the way in her musical journey in the form of attending every orchestra concert, musical, and festival that was part of her busy life growing up. Sara studied Vocal Music Education at Iowa State University, and enjoyed playing violin in the orchestra throughout her studies in addition to her operatic and musical roles. Her recent credits include Pamina in Mozart's The Magic Flute and Lucy in Sweeney Todd with Breckenridge Backstage Theatre. She is over the moon to have found her dream job in music directing and teaching at The Spark.

Sara@thesparkcreates.org

Claire Leon
Teaching Artist / Performer

Claire began her dance studies early in her life, starting at The Academy Program at Spectrum Dance Theatre in Seattle under the direction of Donald Byrd. Studying multiple techniques, from Contemporary to African Dance, her training has been extremely diverse. She was accepted to Hubbard Street’s intensive, studying under the influence of artistic director Glenn Edgerton, learning company repertoire.

Ever since the beginning of her journey with dance, emotion and storytelling have been incredibly influential. She took her passion to the theatrical stage, performing in multiple shows at Studio East such as Into the Woods, Singin’ in the Rain, The Wizard of Oz and many more. Under the mentorship of Artistic Director Lani Brockman, she was selected as dance captain for multiple shows and traveled to New York with the studio for professional workshops at Circle in the Square.

After being admitted to the American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA), she studied under multiple professors such as, Ray Virta and Stacy Lee Tilton. Graduating in 2019, Claire entered the professional world of New York City, starting as an assistant choreographer for Eugenio Contenti at the Argyle Theatre. After working with both Contenti and the cast for several months throughout the rehearsal process, she was hired as the swing for their production of The Full Monty.

Claire has always been drawn to theatre and the performing arts, committing herself to a career in the industry at an early age. The performing arts brings people together creating a beautiful community, something she believes everyone needs a little bit more of right now. She’s looking forward to sharing her knowledge and contributing to others’ training. Returning to Colorado, she is honored and thrilled to work with The Spark and looks forward to the next step in her years of training and performing.


Stefanie Raccuglia
Teaching Artist / Choreographer

Stefanie Raccuglia is a licensed mental health provider, a dance/movement therapist, and choreographer based in Denver, CO. Stefanie received her BA in Dance and Theatre from Manhattanville College in NY, and her MA from Naropa University in Boulder, CO. Stefanie has over 15 years experience teaching and leading movement and dance groups to children and adults with varying physical and cognitive abilities; and has been working as a dance/movement therapist for the last 5 years, both in community and private agencies. She has performed and choreographed off-broadway in NYC, in community musical theatre productions in Denver, and has dedicated much of her time to studying musical theatre dance, improvisational dance and physical theatre dance both nationally and internationally. Currently, Stefanie owns a psychotherapy private practice and movement studio in Denver, CO.


Jeremy Kurn
Music Director

Raised in a disciplined classical world, Jeremy Kurn became a lifelong student of composition, improvisation, jazz, classical and musical theater. He took an unconventional journey to find authentic musical inspiration sourced by years of travel, spiritual practices, experimental music, mountain climbing and martial arts. Jeremy now works as a professional composer, arranger, producer and music director. He has completed three original musicals debuted locally and abroad, his arrangements have been played by orchestras and big bands throughout the country and he has worked locally with the DCPA, Town Hall Arts Center, DL Parsons Theater, Aurora Fox Theater, and others.

Board Members

Marla A. Schulz
Secretary/Treasurer
Dillon Kenyon
Chairperson
Cecilia Pang