Neptune Staff

 

To contact the Box Office, call 902-429-7070 (or toll-free 1-800-565-7345).

For General Inquiries, email info@neptunetheatre.com or call 902-429-7300.

 

Taylor Andrews -- Head Scenic Carpenter

Taylor grew up in the tropical paradise of Chester, Nova Scotia where he was raised in a bar (true story). Across the street and 3 buildings over from that bar was the Chester Playhouse where Taylor first dipped his feet in the proverbial theatre pool. However, Taylor grew up and his hometown lost the excitement it once held and he left Chester to go to Dalhousie University with aspirations of becoming a doctor.

Surprise twist: didn’t happen.

Four years and one theatre degree later he was offered a job at Neptune Theatre as the Assistant Scenic Carpenter, becoming the Head Scenic Carpenter after inhaling enough magical sawdust to level up in 2015.

Taylor has been very happy at Neptune since starting in 2011.  He normally doesn’t complain about the splinters.


Garrett Barker -- Assistant Technical Director

Garrett G. Barker was born into the theatre, and studied music, acting and dance from his mother at the V. Anne Barker School for the Performing Arts. Garrett grew up in Woodstock, New Brunswick and came to Halifax to study scenography at Dalhousie University's Theatre dept. Blood Brothers (1998 summer season) was the first show Garrett got to attend at Neptune, and Dinner with Friends (Jan 2002) was the first he'd worked on. Garrett has worked in various positions within the production department including assistant scenic carpenter, head studio technician, head of lighting, and his current position of assistant technical director. Garrett enjoys working as a Lighting, Set and Video designer for various canadian theatres. Favourite Neptune production would be a toss-up between Chicago (2005) and White Christmas (2007).


Shawn Bisson -- Technical Director

Shawn Bisson is Neptune’s Technical Director and is a freelance sound/video designer. Holding a Bachelor of Music from Bishop’s University and certified through the prestigious Ontario Institute of Audio Recording Technology, Shawn found his way in and out of theatre from a very young age eventually calling it his career. He has also worked as a Production Manager and Technical Director for various other companies including the Atlantic Fringe Festival, Queer Acts, Eastern Front Theatre, Secret Theatre, and the Blyth Festival. As Neptune’s Technical Director, Shawn’s job is to oversee the lighting, sound, staging, and shop departments while working with the creative teams to translate conceptual designs into real tangible things on stage. He joined the Neptune team in 2013, first as the Studio Head, and then taking the TD office in 2017. Shawn’s hometown is Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Labrador. He can eat an entire pizza in one sitting, drinks hoppy beer, and loves his two cats.


Thomas Brookes -- Head Stage Carpenter

Dressed in black, hands of/for steel, a strong work ethic, and a keen eye for detail, Thomas is the person who keeps the stage and set in its optimal show-ready condition. His work cannot be seen from the audience, but if you take a trip backstage and look up, you can the type of responsibilities trusted to him.

Hailing from Cape Breton, he came into the theatre life through the experiences of working with IATSE 680 and luck. Having worked at Neptune as a casual, as show crew, and as a scaffolder in the oil patch, he soon found himself in the right place, at the right time, with all the right skill sets to take on the role of Head Stage Carpenter. It can be uncommon to find oneself in an occupation that meets a person's passions and determination, and a technician of the arts is something he will never take for granted.

Rigging, a fly system, quality shows, and a family of co-workers is all he asks for, and he has found it here!


Lisa Bugden -- General Manager

 

Lisa Bugden joined Neptune in November 2016, bringing over 28 years of experience in leadership, public and government affairs and business development to the organization.

Prior to Neptune, Lisa was the Interim Director and CEO of the Art Gallery OF Nova Scotia, the CEO of Film & Creative Industries Nova Scotia, where she led the new agency in working with businesses in the film, television, animation, publishing, music and production craft industries. During her tenure, Film and Creative Industries developed a framework for measuring the contribution of the creative economy and generated a record-high $161 million in animation, TV and film production activity in Nova Scotia – a 28% increase over two years. Lisa engaged a consortium of government and private sector partners to leverage the visibility of the TV mini-series The Book of Negroes to promote Nova Scotia, cultural tourism and the new Black Loyalist Heritage Centre.

As Vice President with Nova Scotia Business Inc. (NSBI), Lisa developed strategies to promote the province as a location for foreign-direct investment and worked closely with leading international companies in the information technology, aerospace and defence and financial services industries. She also supported domestic businesses in reaching new markets and becoming stronger global competitors. Lisa was part of the Ships Start Here initiative, which used digital engagement to create awareness of Nova Scotia’s opportunity to build $30 billion in combat vessels for the Canadian Navy.

Lisa received her Bachelor of Public Relations (BPR) from Mount Saint Vincent University. Her work in public and government affairs has earned her recognition including an Economic Development Association of Canada (EDAC) award and numerous Gemstone Awards for external relations, communications and public affairs.

Active in the community, Lisa is currently a director on the Board of CAA Atlantic and volunteers with the Sacred Heart School of Halifax and Brigadoon Children’s Camp. She was also a long-time volunteer with the Ecology Action Centre, and member of the organization’s Board of Directors.


Laura Caswell -- Director of Education

Laura Caswell has been known to Neptune audiences for nearly a decade playing various roles (including 5 witches!). For Neptune, Laura has choreographed Wizard of Oz, Frog and Toad and Once. Ms. Caswell trained in Musical Theatre in New York City and London, England, earning a Masters in Performance through the University of East Anglia. She has also trained extensively in improv, puppetry, voice work, singing, dance, acting and film and TV. Laura has performed, directed, choreographed and assistant directed at theatres all over the country. She is also co-producer of the monthly variety show Open Stage Halifax and a member of the new all-female singing trio Diva Station. Laura has been teaching students of all levels for over 15 years and is excited to share her knowledge and skills in performance with the Neptune community.


Isabelle Chevrier -- Administrative Assistant

Proud to be a truly genuine Franco-Ontarian. Born and raised in a small Eastern Ontario village that nobody knows where it is when I say its name (Alexandria). After completing an Honours Degree in French Literature at Ottawa U (Baccalauréat ès Arts, spécialisation lettres françaises), I decided to pursue my studies in Education to become an Ontario Certified Teacher. While waiting to get a class of my own, I worked for Alexandria Moulding as Executive Assistant where I gathered over 20 years of experience working in an office environment. In 2009, my husband asked me if I would like to follow him to the lovely East Coast, leaving behind friends and family. It was a big life event and I have to admit, it was the best thing that could have happened to me. In 2010, I joined the Neptune Theatre Family as Administrative Assistant. Since then, I’ve helped out many actors, board members and fellow workers on various tasks. In my spare time, I enjoy being outside in the garden or be with my husband Patrick taking pictures of birds, scenery, sporting events. I also enjoy being inside doing decorative painting or watching a good movie.


Janice Creelman -- Receptionist

My first season was in the old building (1994-95) as an usher/bartender (thank you Jim!); I was terrified and I loved it! I continued to work in front of house, box office and some work in the props department until 2002 when the opportunity to be the theatre receptionist came along. Since then admin support for the theatre school has been added to the position. Still love it, somedays still terrified!

PS: I’m not really a chicken


Andrew Cull -- Head of Props

I’m the only person I know who moved east to find work.

My life is a Stan Rogers song played backwards.

I didn’t think I would stay in Halifax beyond my first year; I just needed a place to lick the self-inflicted wounds of my early twenties. But this town, this place, this job kept pulling me deeper and deeper, drawing out my roots and giving me space to grow. I met my partner here and my children were born to this coast, the ocean salt in their bones. It’s here where we will tell our stories and sing our songs.

It’s here too, where we can raise up the voices of those too long tangled in nets of indifference and exclusion. I believe the Theatre is unique in its capacity to affect intimate and personal change. There are so many stories we have not heard, so many perspectives to learn and voices to join.

I have great hope for this place and my place in it.


Michael Erwin -- Production Manager

Michael Erwin has been making a career out of theatre for the past 20 years, starting as the rental technician in his high school auditorium. He has earned a diploma in Technical Theatre Production from Sheridan College, and a Masters Certificate of Project Management from Schulich School of Business. Michael is also a Board Member for the 1588 Barrington St. Building Preservation Society, and active participant of Arts Advocacy initiatives.


Ian Gilmore -- Front Box Office

 

Meow Meow Meow Meow Meow Meow Neptune Theatre since 2002. Ian Meow Meow Meow Meow Meow Meow performing professionally for 24 years Meow 15 shows Meow Neptune Theatre. Meow Meow box office since 2016. Ian Meow Meow Meow Meow Meow founding member of Whale Song Theatre. Ian Meow Meow Meow Merritt Volunteer Award. Meow Meow Meow Meow most recently Dancin' Archie in Tompkinsville Meow Eastern Front Theatre.


Mary Hartley -- Props Builder

Mary is That Props Builder with the cool hair who always seems to be wandering the Neptune corridors with a drill and looking a little bit lost in search of that prop that needs to be fixed. She came all the way from Maine to wander these corridors, coming to Neptune after having earned her degree in Corridor-Wandering from the Fountain School of Performing Arts where she graduated with high marks in Looking Just A Little Bit But Not Very Lost.

In her free time Mary enjoys being a little bit lost in woods, on mountains, and in seas. Being passionate about both theatre and the environment, she hopes for a future where Neptune’s construction shops facilitate the creation of insightful, humourous and relevant art while taking environmental costs into account. She plans to wander Neptune’s corridors for a little while longer looking for creative ways to make this happen, jamming with her brilliant co-workers, and watching as amazing art unfolds.


Alison House -- Box Office Manager

Alison has been involved in theatre ever since Grade 5, when she learned how to pronounce “Prosecution” for a production of Santa Claus on Trial, and has been working at Neptune since 2007. She holds a BFA in Theatre from MUN, and is a recipient of the Golden Crescent Wrench Award. Around Halifax she has been an actor, director, stage manager, sound/light board operator, and playwright. She is a fan of traveling, baking, writing, and the Oxford Comma. 

Some of her Favourite Neptune Shows include: Ubuntu, Oil and Water, No Great Mischief, The Beauty Queen of Leenane, What a Young Wife Ought to Know, The Colony of Unrequited Dreams, the Producers, Elf, and West Side Story.


Gabrielle Jeannotte -- Marketing & Design Associate

A creative heart, Gabrielle has always been a maker and illustrator. Since graduating from NSCC’s Graphic Design program, she has worked on brands like Alexander Keith’s, the Nova Scotia International Tattoo, and LUXI Studioworks. To learn more about Gabrielle, follow her on Instagram @gabriellejea

 


Tom Krzyski -- Controller

Tom...aka...Mr. Moneybags....has been with Neptune for 12 years. Tom looks after all financial matters pertaining to the operations of the Theatre. This an amazing organization to be with. I enjoy interacting with patrons, volunteers, staff and Board members. Its sounds cliche but it's like a family here...everyone has each other's back.

Orginally from Cape Breton, I went to university in Halifax and stuck around since. Prior to working with Neptune Theatre, I was employed with the Quebec Nordiques AHL affiliate, The Halifax Citadels, Musicstop and St. John's Ambulance. When not at work, I enjoy travelling and supporting my favourite hockey team...Go Habs Go!


Allison MacLeod -- Marketing Associate

 


Helena Marriott -- Head of Wardrobe

 

Helena is a graduate of the Dalhousie Costume Studies Program and has been costuming for 35 years. From stitcher, pattern drafter, supervisor to designer. (But she loves drafting patterns the most)

Working primarily in Nova Scotia, the Theatre and film industries have kept her busy. Helena has worked on over 250 productions for Neptune and is currently the costume designer for the Royal NS International Tattoo. She has had the fun of working on such shows as CodCo, Lexx, Pit Pony and Blackfly (to name a few) and the pleasure to work with so many amazing people.

First show watched – Les Canadiens ‘78/’79

First shows worked – Romeo and Juliette/West Side Story (done in rep) ‘83

Favorites

  • Beauty and the Beast (both times)
  • Les Miserables
  • Shine Boy
  • Little Shop of Horrors
  • The Dresser
  • B Movie - The Play
  • Rocky Horror
  • Anything Goes
  • The 39 Steps

I couldn’t imagine doing anything else – SO MUCH FUN!!!!!  Thanks and Love to Robert Doyle for everything he taught me……..and to the other amazing wardrobe people who have shared their knowledge.


Joe Micallef -- Sound Coordinator

Before I came to the Neptune I studied technical production and stage craft at Sheridan College in Oakville Ontario, and then worked in the sound department of The Banff Centre in Alberta where I studied snowboarding and brunch extensively.

My favorite shows are musicals; the bigger the better. When I’m not working, I like to find time to play music. I recently tied the knot with my amazing wife Roberta; you might meet her tending bar at The Neptune.


David Rogerson -- Building Manager

Retiring after 27 years from the N.B. Dept. of Education as Facility Manager in school maintenance and construction, I moved to Halifax from Moncton, N.B. Taking a position with Neptune Theatre, I discovered a group of extremely talented men and women who have a passion for their craft that would be the envy of many professions. It is a special place to work. Where else would I be able to watch a dragon built from scratch; so large she is stored in a separate room, moves with grace, can wink and blow smoke. I am extremely proud of Neptune Theatre and my city. 


B r i a n   S h e a   --   IT Administrator

An inveterate geek in high school, Brian was far more interested in chess club than basketball, and still has his medals from the Pascal and Fermat Waterloo Math competitions. He graduated from St. Francis Xavier University with a B.Sc. in Computer Science and Physics, doing some C programming for his thesis on using Simulated Annealing to Optimize Combinatorial Logic Functions for FPGA Synthesis. Brian further pursued his interest in VLSI computer hardware design at the University of Victoria where he designed custom DSP circuits with Field-Programmable Gate Arrays to do high-speed genetic database searches in anticipation of the release of the results of the Human Genome Project. He has fond memories of his trips to Patricia Bay Marine Technology Centre for Ben Koop's weekly talks on genomics and molecular evolution, and of his time teaching 200 undergrads per week the art of C++ programming.

While in Victoria, Brian volunteered downtown at Inner City Youth Works where youth-at-risk could learn to operate small businesses. In addition to teaching life skills and basic computer literacy, he also ran the Drum Workshop where youth could make their own African Hand Drums.

Brian's lifelong interest in sailing wooden schooners prompted him to return to Nova Scotia where he could learn wooden boatbuilding. At both Covey Island Boatworks and Lunenburg Foundry he gained the skills to make a vessel from lumber to launch. In addition to working on private restorations, he also worked on 'big boats' in the shipyards of Vancouver and Seattle.

Moving to Halifax in 2007 to gain MCSE certification, he studied network and server architecture at Eastern College. Upon graduation he ran the network at MBS Radio, the largest broadcaster in the Maritimes with over 23 continuously operating radio stations, and facilitated 200 sales people generating over $18 million in advertising revenue. His next stop was 3 blocks up the hill to Neptune Theatre where he has been managing the hardware, software, networking, business, and data needs of an inspiring and vibrant artistic community since 2011.

His current professional development goals are in large dataset visualisation and analysis with R, and taking the time to learn how to develop modern Web Applications in Java, Javascript, SQL, and HTML5 with Open Source software.


Laura Thornton -- Assistant Box Office Manager

Laura has been working in the Neptune Box Office since August 2012 when she was hired as a part-time agent. But that's not where her relationship with Neptune began. A producer, director, actor, administrator and writer based here in Halifax,  Laura is heavily involved in the arts community - and a lifelong Neptune fan. The first show she remembers seeing at Neptune was Charlotte's Web (but will have to check with her parents because she's pretty sure she saw Les Mis...but that may have been a fever dream). Fave shows seen recently at Neptune include: Legally Blonde, Oil & Water,  Kim's Convenience, and What a Young Wife Ought to Know. Laura has a perfectly healthy and normal relationship with musical theatre, and only badgers Jeremy every *other* day to bring Hamilton: The Musical to Neptune. 

When not in the box office, Laura runs Whale Song Theatre - an emerging professional theatre company committed to producing quirky and quality shows in support of local charities. She's also a casting assistant for local film and television, is the former Executive Director of Halifax Circus, and has been involved with the Atlantic/Halifax Fringe Festival in various roles since 2006.


Annie Valentina -- Artistic Accomplicehttp://www.neptunetheatre.com/images/2017-18-Season/media/annievalentina_selfie_headshot-200.jpg

Annie Valentina has been a stalwart of the Halifax arts scene since the early 2000s, as both creator and producer of independent theatre. She is very excited to be joining the Neptune Theatre team, and perhaps a little TOO excited to finally have a job title that essentially amounts to "professional troublemaker".

Annie is a strong believer in centering Atlantic Canadian talent, supporting new work development, and art as catalyst for sociocultural change. In her own artistic practice she is a playwright, director and performer, and runs Halifax-based company The Doppler Effect Productions.

She looks forward to contributing to the Neptune vision and sharing her passion for contemporary theatre with a poetic, rebellious heart. Other things she enjoys are: gaming, yoga, smashing the patriarchy, and kittens.


Jeremy Webb -- Artistic Director

Jeremy Webb is the twelfth Artistic Director in Neptune Theatre’s history.

Prior to Neptune, Jeremy was the Artistic Producer of Halifax’s Eastern Front Theatre.

He ran his company Off The Leash Creative since 2009. He moved to Canada, from his native UK, in 1998. He grew up in Cambridge and trained at The Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. Jeremy has been working at Neptune ever since 1998.

Most recent Canadian stage appearances include ‘Cogsworth’ in Neptune Theatre’s Beauty and The Beast (twice), ‘Jaggers’ in Great Expectations (Neptune Theatre),  ‘Jack’ in Broadway on Argyle St. (WillPower/OTL), ‘George’ in I’ll Be Back Before Midnight (Valley Summer Theatre), ‘Macbeth’ in Macbeth (WillPower Theatre),  ‘Max Bialystock’ in The Producers (Rainbow Stage, Winnipeg), ‘Riverdale/Churchill’ in Rexy (Neptune), ‘Under Milk Wood (touring since 2013,) ‘Paul Fisher’ in his own play Fishing (touring since 2012,) ‘Beowulf’ in Beowulf (Two Planks & A Passion), The Comedy of Errors, The Wizard of Oz and Romeo & Juliet (Neptune Theatre), MacBeth, ‘Iago’ in Othello (Shakespeare By The Sea), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Beauty & The Beast (Niagara Falls).

In Canada, he directed (and wrote) The Chuckle Hour (Festival Antigonish), Pinocchio (for Shakespeare By The Sea), Urinetown, Blue Remembered Hills, The Wizard of Oz, A Streetcar Named Desire, Animal Farm, The Farm Show, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Romeo & Juliet, Twelfth Night, Liar, Joseph, Grease, Godspell, The Wind In The Willows, and Til It Hurts, I Do! I Do!, Double Double, Les Miserables, The Hobbit and Oliver.

His one-man version of A Christmas Carol has been a great success since 2003, touring Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and the USA, in schools and theatres since then. His other plays, Shakespeare On Trial and Fishing, have also both toured for years.

Jeremy won a Best Actor Merritt Award for his portrayal of ‘Iago’ in Othello, for Shakespeare By The Sea and a Best Director Merritt for Little Thing Big Thing. He won the 2010 Mayor’s Award for Achievement in Theatre and The Coast (Halifax’s weekly newspaper) Best Theatre Actor Award in 2007, 2009 and 2010 (2008 wasn’t such a great year!)

In 2013, Jeremy won the Creative Arts Nova Scotia Established Artist Award.

In 2014, Off The Leash/Jeremy Webb won the 2014 Touring Performers Award, presented by The Atlantic Presenters Association. In 2017, he was awarded The ACTRA David Renton Award of Excellence (for service to the film & TV union.)

He is most proud of two ‘productions’ Dylan (3 years) and Samuel (5 years.)