A program focused on the process of the work taught by Broadway, TV and film professionals.
Summer Performing Arts Intensive (SPAI) is an intensive program for B.F.A. in Acting and Musical Theatre students who have completed the first year of their three-year/two-summer theatre program at Stephens. During the program, students focus on the process of the work by learning new techniques from instructors who are highly respected in their fields.
Students take classes in Lessac Voice & Bodywork, Movement for the Actor, The Michael Chekhov Acting Technique, and Self-Tape/On-Camera Techniques.
Learn From the Best: Meet Our Instructors
Jennifer Hemphill - Program Director & Instructor (SELF-TAPE/ON-CAMERA)Jennifer Hemphill, Stephens College Musical Theatre program chair, is an assistant professor who teaches all levels of Acting and Musical Theatre, and directs and acts in various productions. Prior to joining the faculty at Stephens, Hemphill was most recently seen on Broadway in “Mamma Mia!” She enjoyed three years of performing the hit ABBA show at the Winter Garden and Broadhurst theaters on Broadway and two years playing to full houses on the national tour. Hemphill has performed in New York, on tours across the U.S. and Canada, in Europe, with symphonies, and at sea for the last two decades. She enjoys adjudicating for Showstopper national dance competitions and is a proud member of the Actors’ Equity Association. Her academic focus is on preparing actors for the industry through solid technique and practical application. She earned an M.F.A. from Kent State University and a B.F.A. from Tisch School of the Art at New York University.
Jason Bohon - Instructor (MOVEMENT FOR THE ACTOR)Jason Bohon teaches in the UNCSA School of Drama after having previously taught in the Department of Theatre & Dance at the University of Kansas and in the M.F.A. Actor training program at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. He has also taught in the B.F.A. Musical Theatre program at Drake University and the B.F.A. Actor training program at the University of Minnesota/Guthrie Theatre. For 10 years, Bohon has been an actor-creator and producing director for Split Knuckle Theatre, a devising theater company based in New York and Connecticut. In addition to creating shows as an actor-director, he manages logistics of tours and residencies, both nationally and internationally. He specializes in mask, movement and devising techniques rooted in the pedagogy of Jacques Lecoq. He also holds a 500-hour yoga instructor certification through the Yoga Alliance and is an executive business coach with Exec/Comm, a communication skills firm based in New York City.Visit his website
Nancy Krebs - Instructor (LESSAC VOICE & BODYWORK)Nancy Krebs has been a professional actor/singer since 1975; and is a member of AEA, AFTRA, SAG and VASTA. Her acting credits include: TV series: “Once Upon a Town” (Emmy award), “The Bloomin’ Place,” “One Life to Live”; over 150 professional productions in regional theaters such as Alaska Repertory Theatre, Center Stage, Meadowbrook Theatre, summer stock as well as dinner theatres and Inter-Generational theatres in the Baltimore/Washington area; numerous voice-over commercials and narrations as well. As an author, Krebs has contributed to the texts: “Play with Purpose: Lessac Kinesensics in Action,” edited by Marth Munro, Sean Turner & Allan Munro; “Voice and Speech Training in the New Millennium: Conversations with Master Teachers” by Nancy Saklad; “Collective Writings on the Lessac Voice and Body Work: A Festschrift,” edited by Marth Munro, Sean Turner, Allan Munro and Kathleen Campbell; and numerous professional articles and journals. She is editing and assisting the author of a TESOL manual for international students of English. She is also a singer/songwriter/musician and recording artist, having released seven albums of critically acclaimed original Christian meditational music.Visit her website
Séamus Maynard - Instructor (THE MICHAEL CHEKHOV ACTING TECHNIQUE)Séamus Maynard is a member of MICHA and is a highly respected Michael Chekhov Technique instructor. He is also an actor and musician and has worked with theater companies such as Improbable Theatre (UK), The Belgian National Theater, and (since 2000) with The Actors’ Ensemble. Maynard holds a degree in acting from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, where he received the Sir John Gielgud Award for Excellence in Acting from the Sir John Gielgud Charitable Trust. He extensively studied speech, classical acting, and Shakespeare with his teacher and mentor Patsy Rodenburg. He has taught speech and drama workshops in Turkey, London and the United States. Most recently, he was on the faculty for MICHA at California State University's SummerArts Program. Maynard is also a songwriter and composer as well as founder of The Living Roots Trio, a folk/rock group that blends slam poetry with folk/rock, classical and jazz influences.
Robyn Cohen - “Pop-in” Guest (SELF-TAPE/ON-CAMERA)After earning her B.F.A. from The Juilliard School, Robyn Cohen has trained, taught and directed at Playhouse West, Studio 4, The William Inge Theatre Festival, The Victory Theatre Center, the Edinburgh Fringe and in workshops and theaters around the world. In addition to leading classes in the Meisner Technique, Fundamentals of Acting and Advanced Scene Study, she’s most recently directed “A View from the Bridge,” “The Elephant Man,” “Tape” and “Fool for Love.” As an actor, Cohen has starred on stage in “The Exonerated” opposite Jeff Goldblum; and in the West Coast premiere of Neil Labute’s “The Shape of Things”; “No Way Around But Through,” Garry Marshall Theatre, starring Scott Caan and Melanie Griffith; “The French Waitress,” under John Patrick Shanley, and more. She’s performed with The Actors Theatre of Louisville, Lincoln Center (NY), The Ford’s Theater (D.C.), The Delaware REP, Goodspeed Opera House, Coachella Valley Rep., Idaho Shakespeare Festival, Great Lakes Theatre/Cleveland’s Classic Theater Co., Paper Mill Playhouse, Sacramento Light Opera, Bucks County Playhouse, and in the national tour of “Cabaret” In TV, Cohen was a series regular on “Gravity” for Starz and “That Guy” for Fox. She also has guest starred and recurred on various TV shows and acted in films, including Wes Anderson’s “The Life Aquatic,” opposite Bill Murray. She’s appeared in over 75 national commercials and currently resides in California, where she founded The Cohen Acting Studio in Burbank. Cohen is a contributing writer to Jon Jory’s handbook, “Tips on Auditioning: Ideas for Actors.” Visit her website
Coco Cohn – “Pop-in” Guest (SELF-TAPE/ON-CAMERA)Lauren Cohn spent nearly three years as Dancing Queen, Rosie in the Broadway company of “Mamma Mia!” Recent credits include “Fun Home” - WPPAC and Phoenix Theatre (Alison). “MAME” - North Shore Music Theatre (Agnes Gooch). “Into the Woods” - Theatre Under The Stars (Jack’s Mother). “Emma” - TheatreWorks Silicon Valley (Miss Bates). “The Drowsy Chaperone” - Gateway Playhouse (Chaperone). 2011 Helen Hayes Nominee “Glimpses of The Moon” - MetroStage (Coral). TV: “High Maintenance,” “The Family,” “Royal Pains,” “Deadbeat,” “House,” “Desperate Housewives.” Film: “Morning Glory,” “Catch Me If You Can,” “Legally Blonde 2,” “Secretary,” “Solaris.” Paul Gordon’s “Emma” was filmed for a brand-new streaming platform. In it, Cohn reprises her role as Miss Bates. It is available now at www.streamingmusicals.com and on Amazon Prime. Additionally, she has proudly developed and directed multiple solo shows for exceptional performers, and also coaches young theater professionals with the critically acclaimed A Class Act NY. Friends call her Coco!
Addie Doyle - “Pop-in” Guest (SELF-TAPE/ON-CAMERA)Addie Doyle is a LA-based actress and filmmaker whose work has been featured at the Chelsea Film Festival, New York Short Film Festival, Independent Shorts Festival and jellyFEST. She spent her youth performing in a dance company in Boston, and she now acts, sings, writes and produces in Los Angeles. Doyle also co-hosts a podcast called “Broadcasts & Bubbles.” She graduated with honors from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. Visit her website
Stacia Fernandez - “Pop-in” Guest (SELF-TAPE/ON-CAMERA)Stacia Fernandez last appeared Off Broadway as Hilda in “Einstein’s Dreams.” She has also appeared on Broadway in “Mamma Mia!” and “The Drowsy Chaperone,” where she performed the Tony Award-winning role Swing, where she got to live out a lifelong dream of singing swing music on Broadway, “Tom Sawyer,” “The Scarlet Pimpernel,” and “Beauty and the Beast.” Fernandez has toured the country in several national tours (“Evita,” “Beauty and the Beast” and “Jerome Robbins’ Broadway,” among them) and appears across the country in regional theater, most recently at Papermill Playhouse as Mrs. Potts in “Beauty and the Beast” and at Westchester Broadway as Reno Sweeney. Among her favorite roles are Diana in “Next to Normal,” Adelaide in “Guys and Dolls,” Mrs. Anna in “The King and I” and Grizabella in “Cats.” She also has done voice work on several films, including “Enchanted,” “Shaggy Dogg,” “Captain America” and “Frozen 2.” Fernandez was co-writer of “The Loop,” “A Smalltowne Christmas” and “Middle (ST)age.” She is a founding member and partner of an online streaming company called Streaming Musicals.Visit her website
John Hemphill - “Pop-in” Guest (SELF-TAPE/ON-CAMERA)John Hemphill is currently in the first national tour of “Dear Evan Hansen,” playing the role of Larry Murphy. He starred as not one but two dads in the Broadway production of “Mamma Mia!” and was in the original Broadway company of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “School of Rock.” Hemphill also starred in the Broadway national tour of “Mamma Mia!” and the first national tour of “The Curious Incident of The Dog In The Night-Time.” His film work includes Paramount Picture’s “Zodiac,” directed by the Academy Award-nominated David Fincher. On television, he has had guest starring roles on ABC’s “Castle” and USA’s “Monk” and recurring roles on NBC’s “Las Vegas” and ABC’s “Commander in Chief.” Other TV appearances include NBC’s “The Black List,” USA’s “Mr. Robot,” HBO’s “Big Love” and “House of Cards,” and the HBO mini series “Show Me A Hero,” directed by Academy Award winner Paul Haggis.
Cadden Jones - “Pop-in” Guest (SELF-TAPE/ON-CAMERA)Based in New York City, Cadden Jones spreads her work across theater, television and film. Notable theater credit include Claire (“Proof”), Oliva (“Sex with Strangers”), Marian (“The Music Man”) and Queenie (“The Wild Party”). Television work includes roles in hit shows such as “Billions,” “Mr. Robot,” “Shades of Blue” and “Law & Order: SVU.” Most recently, she can be seen as Gal LaMontagne in the Riverdale series spin-off “Katy Keene,” on the CW. Jones has picked up multiple awards along the Independent Film Festival circuit, including Best Supporting Actress for “Camp Wedding” and “Dogmate.” She studied theater at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts (CAP21).Visit her website
Aaron Lazar - “Pop-in” Guest (SELF-TAPE/ON-CAMERA)Aaron Lazar’s 11 Broadway productions include “The Phantom of the Opera” (debut), the world premieres of “A Tale of Two Cities,” “Impressionism” and “The Last Ship”; the revivals of “A Little Night Music” and “Les Miserables”; and romancing audiences in “The Light in the Piazza” at Lincoln Center and “Live from Lincoln Center” on PBS. In 2018-19, he starred as Larry Murphy in the first national tour of the Tony Award-winning smash “Dear Evan Hansen.” On film and television, Lazar has worked with Clint Eastwood (“J. Edgar”), Martin Scorsese (“The Wolf of Wallstreet”), Shawn Levy (“This is Where I Leave You”), and The Russo Brothers (“Avengers: Infinity War” and “Avengers: Endgame”). He stars in “Filthy Rich,” a new series premiering on Fox this fall. Lazar has been a guest artist with the New York Philharmonic, The New York Pops at Carnegie Hall, the National Symphony Orchestra at The Kennedy Center, the Boston Pops, the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra at Masada, the English National Opera Orchestra and the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra. Visit his website
Kelly Lohman - “Pop-in” Guest (SELF-TAPE/ON-CAMERA)Kelly Lohman is a director, improviser and producer based in Los Angeles. She recently produced and directed five completely improvised films with Ripley Improv that culminated in the anthology series “As We Go Along.” She also has directed and assistant directed with Interact Theatre Company, Fremont Centre Theatre, Vs. Theatre Company and The Car Plays (Moving Arts). She co-directed and co-developed the improvised play “Little House on Vermont” with Sara Mountjoy-Pepka. Lohman is a recurring guest star on “Show Offs,” a completely improvised (and musical) TV series in its third season. She has also appeared in “Bones,” “Gilmore Girls,” “Days of Our Lives,” “A.S.K. What Could Be the Harm” and “The Hillside Strangler.” Lohman has performed sketch and improv across Los Angeles at Impro Theatre, Comedy Central Stages, Second City, UCB, iO West, the Hollywood Fringe Festival, and more. She performs regularly with Ripley Improv and The Society, and is a guest artist with Impro Theatre Main Company.
Claire Rankin - “Pop-in” Guest (SELF-TAPE/ON-CAMERA)Raised on Prince Edward Island, Claire Rankin started her career as a dancer at the Charlottetown Festival. While a member of the Stratford Shakespearean Festival, she performed such roles as Miranda in “The Tempest,” Katherine in “Love’s Labour’s Lost” and Louise in “Carousel.” Other stage appearances include Cossette in “Les Miserables,” Anne in “Anne of Green Gables” and Juliet in “Romeo and Juliet.” Rankin has appeared in over 70 films and television shows, including recurring and guest star roles on “Rogue,” “Damien,” “Hemlock Grove,” “The Mentalist,” “House,” “Monk,” “Without a Trace,” “The District,” “Charmed” and “Suits.” She also had lead roles in independent films and television movies such as “Molly's Game,” “Seven in Heaven,” “The Swap,” “In Quiet Night,” “A Brother’s Promise,” “Root of the Problem” and “One of Our Own.”
She is playing Cynthia Murphy in “Dear Evan Hansen” on the U.S. national tour.
Geoffrey Wade - “Pop-in” Guest (SELF-TAPE/ON-CAMERA)Geoffrey Wade is on hiatus from appearing in the San Francisco production of “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.” He’s worked on and off-Broadway, and done national tours, most recently “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.” His extensive regional theater work includes South Coast Rep (“Amadeus”), Rep Theatre of St. Louis, The Old Globe, Great Lakes Shakespeare, Center Stage, GeVa, the Guthrie, Denver Center, multiple seasons at the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, and a long association with Vermont’s Weston Playhouse (most recently “The Fantasticks” and Quixote in “Man of La Mancha”). Los Angeles theater includes La Jolla Playhouse, La Mirada, the Odyssey, and many shows at Antaeus. Films include Steven Spielberg’s “The BFG, “City Hall” and “The Divide.” He works in episodic television (“NCIS,” “Mad Men,” “Mentalist,” “Numb3rs,” “ER,” four “Law & Orders”), in radio, and on tours with L.A. Theatre Works. He directed critically acclaimed productions of “A Walk in the Woods” and “The Crucible.” Wade has taught at the Antaeus Academy since 2003, and he trained at Central in London.