OUR TEAM

SENIOR STAFF
Timothy Allen McDonald – Founder & CEO
Susan Fuller – Senior Vice President, Publications
Steven G. Kennedy – Vice President, Publications
Lindsay Weiner Lupi – Vice President, Education; Music Supervisor, Publications

CREATIVE DEVELOPMENT
Timothy Allen McDonald – Founder & CEO
Daniel J. Mertzlufft – Director, Creative Development; Music Associate, Publications
Alex Robertson – Producing Associate, Creative Development; Assistant to the CEO

EDUCATION
Lindsay Weiner Lupi – Vice President, Education; Music Supervisor, Publications
Mary-Catherine Chambliss – Director, Education
Jiana J. Odland – Program Director, Education; DEI Advisor
Cindy Ripley – Senior Advisor, Education
Marty Johnson – Advisor, Education

PUBLICATIONS
Susan Fuller – Senior Vice President, Publications
Steven G. Kennedy – Vice President, Publications
Lindsay Weiner Lupi – Vice President, Education; Music Supervisor, Publications
Laura Jo Schuster – Director, Social Media; Editor, Publications
Marianne Phelps – Associate Editor, Publications
Daniel J. Mertzlufft – Director, Creative Development; Music Associate, Publications
Rob Rokicki – Music Copyist, Publications

OPERATIONS
Joseph Ayala – Director, Information Technology
Tammy Dinger – Controller

DIGITAL STRATEGY AND MEDIA
Laura Jo Schuster – Director, Social Media; Editor, Publications
Allison Ravenscroft – Public Relations

Timothy Allen McDonald – Founder & CEO

Tim is an award-winning musical theatre librettist, director, producer, and textbook co-author. Librettist credits include Roald Dahl’s James and the Giant Peach (Benj Pasek, Justin Paul), Jim Henson’s Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas (Paul Williams, Christopher Gattelli), Between The Lines (Elyssa Samsel, Kate Anderson) Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka (Leslie Bricusse, Anthony Newley), The Big One-Oh! (Dean Pitchford, Doug Besterman), The Book Thief (Jodi Picoult, Elyssa Samsel, Kate Anderson), and Breathe (co-conceived and written with Jodi Picoult). In 2021, Breathe was inducted into the Library of Congress to represent musical theatre authors’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Tim’s musicals are exclusively represented by Music Theatre International worldwide.

Tim is the Founder of Junior Theater Festivals Worldwide which the New York Times hailed as “a rousing celebration of Theater.” JTFs are held annually in North America, Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom. McDonald is also the Founder and CEO of iTheatrics which creates and adapts musicals for young people to perform in school and afterschool programs all over the globe. An estimated 36 million people attend these musicals annually in North America alone, which is three times the annual audience for Broadway.

Susan Fuller – Senior Vice President, Publications

Susan’s theatre career began in the third grade when she starred as the title character in Miss Louisa and The Outlaws. It wasn’t until her sophomore year of high school when her drama teacher made her the stage manager for the spring musical that she realized backstage is where the theatre magic really happens. She is an Equity Stage Manager with a BFA in Theatre Design and Production from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. Her involvement with Broadway Junior started in 2001 when she was hired as Production Stage Manager for the pilot of Les Misérables School Edition. Susan can still be found backstage serving as Production Manager for Junior Theater Festivals across the country. Susan has been a part of iTheatrics from day one, and is proud to fill the role of Senior Vice President of Publications. She oversees publication for all materials created by iTheatrics, from new and adapted titles to Broadway study guides and educational materials circulating in classrooms worldwide.

Steven G. Kennedy – Vice President, Publications

Steven has done some stuff, met and taught some people, and traveled to some places, but by far one of his greatest joys was performing in the ensemble of musicals all over the world. To all of you wonderfully talented young performers, teachers, directors, and especially parents, please remember that being in the ensemble of a show is a life- changing and powerful experience – never to be discredited or discounted, but celebrated!

Lindsay Weiner Lupi – Vice President, Education; Music Supervisor, Publications

Lindsay Weiner Lupi (she/her) was part of the first generation of young people who experienced the transformative power of the arts through Broadway Junior. She made her theatrical debut as a seven-year-old with no front teeth, playing the role of Molly in Annie. Subsequently, she played the role of Golde in Fiddler On The Roof JR. and then continued her work with Broadway Junior as the Music Director of multiple pilot productions at North Shore Music Theatre. It was there she met Marty Johnson, which led her to join the iTheatrics team in 2007 after receiving her BFA in drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. At iTheatrics, Lindsay has worn many hats over the years, but mainly has had the true pleasure of serving as the Music Supervisor, where she has music directed, musically adapted, and/or helped creatively shape over 90 adaptations for Music Theatre International, Disney Theatricals, and Concord. Additional music directing credits include the Disney+ series Encore!, NYMF, multiple national tours, and The Sign of the Seahorse and The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley JR. for the Millennium Stage at the Kennedy Center. She holds an MA in Music and Music Education from Teachers College at Columbia University. Outside of iTheatrics, Lindsay is a health and fitness mentor, breast cancer advocate, and most importantly proud mama of Tucker and Talia. @lindsayariennelupi

 

Daniel J. Mertzlufft – Director, Creative Development; Music Associate, Publications

Daniel Mertzlufft is an NYC-based composer/arranger most known for his viral sensations The Thanksgiving Musical on The Late Late Show with James Corden, his arrangement of “Remy The Ratatouille” by Emily Jacobson that launched the TikTok Ratatouille musical movement, and The Grocery Store Musical, featured on ABC’s Good Morning America among other outlets, which is an arrangement of Louisa Melcher’s “New York Summer.” Daniel was also a creative leader for Ratatouille: The TikTok Musical, serving as music supervisor, songwriter, and arranger for the 10-song performance. Daniel also wrote “The Meaning Of Pride (Be True To You)” for Nickelodeon’s Pride 2021 collection performed by drag queen and activist Nina Queen.

Daniel’s original works include Fashion Show; Breathe: Portraits from a Pandemic; Dot and the Kangaroo, commissioned by MTI Australasia and iTheatrics; House Rules: A New Musical based on the New York Times Best- Selling novel by Jodi Picoult; and far memory, commissioned by Fall Island Vocal Arts Seminar for Stephanie Blythe and Alan Louis Smith. He is a member of the advanced class of the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop.

As an educator, he leads workshops at the worldwide Junior Theater Festivals, Junior Theater Celebrations throughout the United States, and specialized music workshops for the Shubert Foundation and the NYC Department of Education. Daniel graduated valedictorian from The Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam and is mentored by Dean Pitchford. Born in Florida, Daniel has also lived in Germany, Las Vegas, and spent his formative years in Buffalo, New York before moving to New York City.

Alex Robertson – Producing Associate, Creative Development; Assistant to the CEO

Alex is a NYC-based producer and creative. He independently produces for Broadway/Off-Broadway and works with brands such as Dunkin’ Brands Inc. to create marketing content. He is co-producer of Douglas Carter Beane’s new comedy, Fairycakes, and Associate Producer of Jim Henson’s Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas. Alex graduated from The Hartt School, University of Hartford with a BFA in Music Theatre and minor in Performing Arts Management. He studied at Carnegie Mellon University in the Master’s in Entertainment Industry Management program prior to joining the iTheatrics team. Alex hopes to continue bringing a positive and unique perspective to the ever-evolving entertainment industry. A-Robertson.com @AlexanderERobertson

 

 

Mary-Catherine Chambliss – Director, Education

Mary-Catherine grew up with iTheatrics after meeting the team in 6th grade at the first Junior Theater Festival. Over 17 years, she has worked with iTheatrics as an adjudicator, teaching artist, and associate choreographer for Choreography Videos. The iTheatrics team laid the foundation for her interest in Musical Theater Education. She decided to pursue a career in Theater Education with a Bachelor of Science in Theater Education from Troy University. During her time at Troy, she served on the founding staff of Summer Spotlight, a series of intensives each year for creative people of all ages looking to grow and develop their interests and talents in and through the Arts. Following her education, Mary-Catherine served as an Associate Teaching Artist at Lexington Children’s Theatre performing in The Cat in the Hat, Seussical, and Shrek the Musical. She developed theatre curriculum and Student Growth Measurements for the Muscogee County Board of Education while serving as the Director of Blackmon Road Middle School, where she was named New Teacher of the Year. During her time in Muscogee County, she performed with the Springer Opera House, Georgia’s State Theater in A Chorus Line, The Who’s Tommy, and Disney’s The Little Mermaid. Mary-Catherine made a move to New York City to act as Program Director for The Anderson School and develop curriculum for Manhattan Youth’s Summer Theatre Intensive. She most recently served Manhattan Youth as Education Director for The Professional Performing Arts High School, Simon Baruch Junior High School, Yorkville East Middle School, and The Anderson School.

Jiana J. Odland – Program Director, Education; DEI Advisor

Jiana Odland (she/her) grew up just outside of Chicago, Illinois and was immediately absorbed into the world of musical theatre at the age of six. Ten years later, she met the fine folks at iTheatrics when she stage managed one of their pilot workshops. After school, she joined the international music theatre outreach organization The Young Americans and spent four years touring North America, Europe, and Asia as a performer, lighting designer, business manager, and musical theatre educator. She has helped produce live events across America for major companies such as Nike, Toyota, and Sonos Digital. Jiana is thrilled to have found her way back to iTheatrics as the Program Director and the DEI Advisor. At iTheatrics, she produces, directs, and choreographs for the iTheatrics Academy; works with various educational partnerships such as the Shubert Foundation/NYC Department of Education, Turnaround Arts, and Jumpstart Theater; and manages the Junior Theater Festivals worldwide as well as the Junior Theater Celebrations. As the DEI Advisor, Jiana produces, writes, and hosts panels on diversity, equity, and inclusion. She conceives and creates content for the iTheatrics and Junior Theater Festival social media channels, as well as writes material for the published ShowKits and Production Guides. Jiana is passionate about driving initiatives for a more inclusive theater and committed to creating equitable space for young theatre artists. In 2018, Jiana choreographed a nationwide music video for Turnaround Arts, working with Misty Copeland, Jason Mraz, and Paula Abdul. When not working at the i, you can catch Jiana producing and performing in the New York City cabaret circuit, or playing with her best friend, Chicago the Doggo. Jiana is so grateful for the opportunity to keep sharing musical theatre with the world! @jianaodd

Rob Rokicki – Music Copyist, Publications

Rob Rokicki is a New York based writer, performer, and composer/lyricist. He wrote the music, lyrics, and co-orchestrated the Broadway show, The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical (book by Joe Tracz). The piece was nominated for the Lortel Awards, Off-Broadway Alliance Awards, and three Drama Desk Awards, including Outstanding Musical, before touring across North America. He’s had a wide variety of collaborators and projects, including the graphic novel musical Monstersongs with award-winning illustrator David O’Neill (World Premiere Recording from Broadway Records, selected for the National Alliance for Musical Theatre, played London and Japan, and is in development as a Virtual Reality video game). His immersive musical, Experience Marianas, was developed at Cap21/Molloy College, a semi-finalist for the O’Neill National Musical Theatre Conference, and workshopped in the UK with Grace Taylor (Six). He is co-arranging and orchestrating Punk­ Rock Girl (book by Joe Iconis), and was a writer on the streaming musical Breathe, with book by Timothy McDonald and New York Times Best-selling novelist Jodi Picoult.  Rob’s been commissioned to write pieces for The Kennedy Center, Bay Area Children’s Theater, along with scoring the films The Real Gemma Jordan (with Anna K. Jakobs), Dividends, and Gingerbread House. Other credits include: Strange Tails (with Michael Ruby); Eleven Eleven (The Pitch & USC); The Listing (horror/comedy radio play); Love NY (American Harmony Award). Rob is a two-time Larson Award finalist, alum of the Tony Award winning BMI writing workshop and graduate of the University of Michigan. Rob is a proud educator and believes in accessibility for creators and audiences. robertrokicki.com @rrokicks

Cindy Ripley – Senior Advisor, Education

Cindy has always loved any excuse to get kids onstage! As the Senior Education Advisor for iTheatrics in NYC, she leads workshops with students and teachers across the world, as well as being the “go to” guru for Music Theatre International’s online Show Support for the Broadway Junior collection. Cindy piloted the first Broadway Junior production of Annie JR. and developed the first Broadway Junior Director’s Guide. She is proud to have been selected for USA Today’s All-Star Teacher Team and serves as a teaching artist for the Educational Theater Association and the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities. Cindy was part of the team directing students for the White House Turnaround Arts Talent Show hosted by first lady Michelle Obama, and has been a consultant for McGraw Hill, Disney Theatricals, and the NYC Dept. of Education. Cindy was recognized by the State University of New York for her national work in music education with the Helen Hosmer Award, as well as the Sigma Alpha Iota Member Laureate honor for achievement of international distinction in the music profession. She proudly serves on the Board of Directors for Shea’s Performing Arts Center in Buffalo, NY. Cindy is a co-author of The iTheatrics Method: The Quintessential Guide to Creating Quality Musical Theatre Programs published by GIA Publications, Inc. and finds the recipe of young people, teachers, parents, musical theatre, and enthusiasm priceless!

Marty Johnson – Advisor, Education

Named by Playbill.com as one of the top ten educators who are shaping Broadway, Marty first became involved in the world of musical theatre when he was 10 years old and his 4-H club put on an unforgettable rendition of Peter Pan – for which he made his own top hat. Marty has continued his work in the area of Theatre Education for over 25 years and during that time he has been fortunate to direct and teach workshops throughout the world including Australia, New Zealand, Great Britain, China, and literally across the entire United States. He currently works as an Educational Consultant for such companies as XIX Entertainment, the Junior Theatre Group (producers of the international Junior Theatre Festivals), and iTheatrics, where he has adapted and directed pilot productions of over 50 new educational titles. In 2018, Marty was honored to direct the first Turnaround Arts National Talent Show held at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington DC. Additional credits include the world premiere of two musicals written by Laurie Berkner, Interstellar Cinderella and The Amazing Adventures of Harvey and the Princess, for New York Children’s Theater, and the world premiere of the new musical Llama Llama Live! for Bay Area Children’s Theater. Marty holds a graduate degree in Theatre for Youth from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro and served for nine years as a board member for TYA/USA, the leading organization for the advancement of theatre for young audiences in the world. He is the proud co-author of The iTheatrics Method: The Quintessential Guide to Creating Quality Musical Theatre Programs, published by GIA.

Laura Jo Schuster – Director Social Media; Editor, Publications

Laura Jo Schuster began working with iTheatrics in 2012 as a freelancer and never looked back. These days she serves as Editor of Publications and Director of Social Media, handling an array of marketing and editorial tasks. In the Design Studio, she writes, edits, and proofreads various projects headed for publication, as well as spearheading and implementing social media campaigns and marketing initiatives. At the Junior Theater Festivals, Laura Jo supervises the Information Booth and a team of fantastic interns. She holds a BS in Theater Performance with a Minor in Literature from the University of Evansville. Laura Jo’s lifelong love of theatre began during her stage debut as an orphan in a middle school production of Annie, and she is thrilled to continue bringing the magic of musical theater to young people.

Marianne Phelps – Associate Editor, Publications

Marianne is an Actors’ Equity actor living and working in Lexington, KY. She received her bachelor’s degree in theatre from the University of Evansville and her MFA from University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill/PlayMakers Repertory Company. After living and working in New York City in television, film, voice over, and the stage, she decided to return to her home state to fulfill a lifelong promise of expanding the arts in central Kentucky. In addition to working for iTheatrics, Marianne also sings, plays a variety of instruments, teaches theatre, directs plays, functions as the associate producer and business manager for AthensWest Theatre Company, has experience in arts administration and operational planning, and works with Ravenscroft PR in California as a copy editor for artists all over America. See more at mariannecatherinemiller.com

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