We proudly offer the bios of our accomplished teachers.
Richard Caliban was artistic director of Cucaracha Theater in New York where over 14 seasons he produced numerous new works and directed many of his own plays, including Homo Sapien Shuffle at the Public Theatre. His work has also been seen at such venues as Primary Stages, Playwrights Horizons, The Cherry Lane Theatre, The Ensemble Studio Theatre, La Mama, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Geva Theatre, Denver Center Theatre, Berkshire Theatre Festival and many others. He wrote the book, lyrics, music, and directed MoM: A Rock Concert Musical, which won “Outstanding Musical” at the New York International Fringe Festival. He is the author of numerous plays, including Rodents & Radios and Gladiator. He has directed, taught and/or lectured at the National Theatre Conservatory, New York University, Columbia University, C.W. Post College, Hunter College, The City College of New York, Towson University, the Lincoln Center Director’s Lab and The Director’s Guild. He holds a BA from Bard College and attended the Yale School of Drama and the New York Film Academy.
Kuros Charney has had plays produced at numerous theaters, including Shame and Desire (Stella Adler Theatre), The Man from Brazoria County (ALAP New Works Lab), The Moving Forward of Souls (Coronet Theater), Anger (Elephant Theatre), and The Humanist (Dayton Playhouse). He wrote the feature film Another City, which premiered at the Manhattan Film Festival, and the feature screenplays Used Books, which was developed with actor/producer LeVar Burton (Eagle Nation Films), and The Sea Between, commissioned by producer Elizabeth Kahn (Forever After Project, Inc.). His work has appeared in New York magazine, Another Chicago Magazine, and FOLIO literary journal. He holds a BA from U.C. San Diego and an MFA in Film from USC.
Tal McThenia wrote the screenplay for the dramatic film Shift, which premiered at the Rotterdam International Film Festival and aired on PBS nationwide, and he has developed feature films with Automatic Pictures and Archer Entertainment. He has written for Butterbean’s Café (Nickelodeon), and animated science mysteries for Mosa Mack Science, an award-winning middle-school science curriculum. He reported and wrote The Ghost of Bobby Dunbar, a one-hour documentary for the NPR radio show This American Life, and is the co-author of the book based on that documentary, A Case for Solomon (Free Press). His essays and articles have appearaed in Vanity Fair, Atlas Obscura, and Popula, among others. He authored the chapter on Scene in Gotham’s book Writing Movies (Bloomsbury USA). He holds a BA from Oberlin College.
Lisa Namdar Kaufman wrote the animated feature film Baldy Heights (Bleiberg Entertainment/Pitchipoy Productions), and the TV drama In the Prime of Her Life, which aired on Israel’s public broadcasting station. She has written short films that have been shown at festivals around the world, from the Cannes International Film Festival to the Hong Kong Jewish Film Festival. She has served as story editor on the documentary film 8000 Paper Clips and TV shows in development with Sony, ABC, and Happy Madison. She has taught at Columbia University and the New York Independent Film Workshop. She holds a BA from Brown University and an MFA in Film from Columbia University.
Nelsie Spencer is the author of the novel The Playgroup, (St. Martin’s Press), and the feature screenplay A Girl's Best Friend. She co-wrote the feature film Valley Inn, which debuted at the Palm Beach International Film Festival. She wrote, produced, and co-hosted the radio show The Radio Ritas, (Greenstone Media) and hosts the podcast Losing It. She co-wrote and starred in the play My Heart Belongs To Daddy, produced at the Pittsburgh Public Theater, Dorothy Lyman’s A Director’s Theater in Los Angeles, and at Duke University’s Pre-Broadway series, and her one-woman show Goodbye Cream played at the When I’m 34 Festival in Los Angeles. She studied dance and theater at Orange Coast College, and fiction at The New School.
Jeremy Wechter is the writer and director of the feature film e-Demon, and the short films “Shake Things Up,” “Popcorn,” “Skewed,” “Hand Off,” “Big Decisions,” and “Bad Connection.” He has directed numerous commercials, and written and directed numerous plays, including the Off-Broadway musical Little House on the Ferry, and he served as artistic director for Directors ‘n’ Actors Collaborative. He has taught at the New York Film Academy, 3rd Ward Art Center, and The New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts. He holds a BFA from NYU.