Meet the Creative Team
Ally Thomas (Summer Intensive Program Manager) is a New York City-based theatre artist and educator from Tampa, Florida. She’s currently a teaching artist with Children’s Museum of the Arts in NYC, and has facilitated and directed drama programs at theatres and schools including Sarah Lawrence College, American Stage Theatre Company, St. Pete Music Acting Dance, and Florida Rep. She fosters community in the classroom through ensemble building and creates a space in which students know they have stories worth sharing. Ally is an actor and creator of stories about unapologetic uniqueness. Her original solo show Karen & Cass is a personal memoir that weaves her journey toward body activism with stories of musicians Karen Carpenter and Cass Elliot. Her work has been performed at The Tank in NYC, and Karen & Cass will be performed at Tampa Fringe in Summer 2022. As an actor, Ally has worked with American Stage, Jewish Ensemble Theatre, The Ritz Theatre, and Tampa Repertory Theatre. She earned an MFA in Theatre from Sarah Lawrence, a BA in Theatre from Samford University, and a Graduate Certificate in New Play Performance from Hollins University. | allythomas.info
Jesse Desroisers (Director) is thrilled to return to the Florida Repertory Theatre to direct Footloose and Shrek Jr. They previously worked with the Rep as a camp Teaching Artist and Music Director. Jesse just finished a tour with the Missoula Children’s Theatre and spent a year as a theatre educator with AmeriCorps. They have also worked as Dramaturg and Artistic Director Assistant at Gainesville’s Hippodrome Theatre. Jesse graduated from the University of Florida in May 2020 with a B.A. in Theatre and a B.A. in International Studies. At UF, they served as the Associate Artistic Director of the student-run theatre company Florida Players. Jesse’s core values are empathy, inquiry, and impact. Key influences on their dramaturgy are Augusto Boal and Michael Chekhov. They are a theatrical multi-hyphenate: a director, sound designer & engineer, teaching artist, and arts administrator. They have worked on new works festivals, site-specific productions, fringe festivals, and the world-premiere of the musical Hills on Fire. You can sample their work at http://www.JesseDesrosiers.com
Meredith Molseed (Choreographer) is originally from South Dakota. Growing up, she was heavily involved in the performing arts, primarily competitive dance. She’s spent the last 10 years working with children in all aspects of performance, including marching band, speech, show choir, and musical theater. A few of her favorite shows she’s choreographed include West Side Story, Newsies, and 42nd Street. After making Fort Myers her new home recently, Meredith is so grateful to have found dance opportunities locally, specifically at Florida Repertory Theatre!
Jesse Massari (Music Director) After growing up in the Florida Rep Education Program for the past 12 years and working Front of House for 5 years, Jesse is so excited to be back as Music Director this summer! You may have seen her on the Florida Rep. stage as Katherine in Newsies, Martha Dunstock in Heathers, Bebe in A Chorus Line or Martha Bessell in Spring Awakening. In the fall Jesse will be a Junior working towards her BFA in Acting with a minor in Directing at Marymount Manhattan College in New York City. Besides music directing Jesse has worked as assistant director and/or choreographer on many productions such as Seussical and Camp Rock (Fort Myers Theatre), Matilda and Refugee (Florida Rep. Education), and Barefoot in the Park (Florida Repertory Theatre dir. Greg Longenhagen). She loves working with young theatre artists, and wants to thank the incredible young people who give their all everyday of camp. Jesse would also like to thank her incredible parents, brother, and friends for their support and encouragement as she pursues her passions.
Jennifer Woodford (Stage Manager) is a Senior B.F.A Technical Theatre and Design Major with a focus in Stage Management at Florida Southern College. She is also a Journeyman Level certified Stage Technician. This is her first time working at a professional theatre. She is so excited to be stage managing all three summer intensive camps this summer. She is also very grateful to Florida Rep for this amazing opportunity and that she gets to work with amazing staff and students. Jennifer’s most recent shows that she stage managed was Godspell, Tom Jones, and Spring Dance Concert at Florida Southern College.
Braden Downing (Teaching Artist) is a rising senior at the University of Mississippi. She is a theatre major with minors in education and legal studies. Braden grew up in Fort Myers doing camps at Florida Rep and is so thrilled to be back helping the community foster a love for theatre! She hopes to continue a career in theatre education when she graduates. She hopes you enjoy the show your children worked so hard on. HOTTY TODDY!
Grayson Singleton (Teaching Artist) is originally from Wetumpka, Alabama where she graduated from Wetumpka High School. She is a Junior pursuing a degree in Theatre Production at Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Alabama. She has a stage management concentration with a minor in Film. She was the Stage Manager for Emilie: La Marquise Du Chatelet Defends Her Life Tonight. Also she was the Assistant Stage Manager for Little Women The Musical, The Importance of Being Earnest, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Boy Gets Girl and more. In addition Grayson is the Philanthropy Vice President for her sorority, Alpha Xi Delta. She is ecstatic to be a part of Florida Rep for the summer!
Addie Zaner (Teaching Artist) comes all the way from Jacksonville, Alabama and is a theatre (production) major at Jacksonville State University with a focus in Stage Management. Earlier this year, she was the Stage Manager for the show The Big Bad Bullysaurus and later was the Assistant Stage Manager for Emilie La Marquise du Chatelet: Defends Her Life Tonight! Addie wants to spread her love for theatre and make sure every camper learns the hard work, dedication, and passion it takes to put on a theatre performance. She would also like to thank Florida Rep, her parents, her boyfriend, and her mentors for leading her on this path to where she is today! “Great theatre is about challenging what we think and encouraging us to fantasize about a world we aspire to.” ~ William DaFoe
Aubrey Zurhellen (Teaching Artist) is a senior Theatre Education major at Middle Tennessee State University. Her previous undergraduate experience includes Fun Home (assistant director/choreographer), Sweeney Todd (assistant director), Godspell (Celisse/choreographer), Failure: A Love Story (Jenny June), and Six Degrees of Separation (Kitty). She recently defended her undergraduate thesis about Disney Theatrical Productions. She has previously worked at the TN Governor’s School for the Arts as a theatre counselor as well as serving as music director, drama director, and/or choreographer at multiple summer camps in her hometown. Her favorite role of all is being Aunt Ro to her 2 nieces and 7 nephews. She is super excited to be at Florida Rep this summer! “When educating the minds of the youth, we must not forget to educate their hearts.” -Dalai Lama. aubreyzurhellen.com
Ellie Boozer (Costume Designer) is a costume designer and costume shop manager for the Summer Education Intensive here at Florida Repertory Theatre. She recently received her undergraduate degree in Theatre Production with a minor in photography from Jacksonville State University. Ellie began her undergrad as a costume technician and soon fell in love with design. She has designed several shows while in college including a production of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with The Shakespeare Project in Anniston, Alabama. She also interned and designed shows for CAST Academy of Performing Arts in Anniston, Alabama. Along with costume design, Ellie has a strong passion for performing. She has been a competitive dancer for five years and focused on jazz, ballet, tap, and musical theatre. In the last couple years of her undergrad, she picked up acting again and performed as Miss Prism and Emilie la Marquise in Jacksonville State University’s productions of The Importance of Being Earnest and Emilie: La Marquise Du Chatelet Defends Her Life Tonight. Ellie is excited to be interning her first summer at Florida Rep and cannot wait to return for her costume internship this coming season!
Stephanie Gall (Costume Shop Assistant) is from Hattiesburg, Mississippi. They went to Oak Grove High School where they joined theatre and found a love for costuming and makeup. She currently attends Western Carolina University where she is a Junior in the BFA Theatre Entertainment Design and Technology program. Stephanie’s focus is costume design. She is currently Secretary for Western Carolina University’s United States Institute for Theatre Technology organization. Stephanie recently was Costume Designer for Western Carolina University’s Romeo and Juliet. In addition to designing at WCU, Stephanie also works as a costume assistant in the costume shop. They are working as the Costume Designer for The Little Mermaid Jr. as well as a Costume Shop Assistant all summer at Florida Repertory Theatre.
Meet the Cast