EMERGING ARTIST PROGRAM
Our Emerging Artist Program seeks lion-hearted artists who are ready to roar.
We provide apprenticeship opportunities for early-career talent by engaging them in a collaborative process toward the development of new works, offering young artists an opportunity to work alongside seasoned professionals in a mounted production while exposing them to a broader range of theatre participation beyond their chosen profession.
MILES ORDUNA / WRITER / 2022
Miles is a New York-based playwright and screenwriter by way of Upstate New York, the San Francisco Bay Area, and Des Moines, IA. His play South of Grand has been read at Cherry Lane Theatre’s Tongue Series, and Naked Angel’s 1st Monday’s reading series. His plays Vacancies, Los Altos, and Spirit Lake have been developed through The New School. He has an MFA in Playwriting from The New School for Drama, and a BFA in Dramatic Writing from The Conservatory of Dramatic Arts at SUNY Purchase. He’s thrilled to be the 2022 Emerging Artist at Royal Family.
Miles' play at Royal Family was Lola.
ROSA ARRENDONDO / WRITER-ACTOR / 2021
Rosa is thrilled to return to Royal Family as an Emerging Artist, after appearing in their production of Women On Fire: Stories from the Frontlines. You can catch Rosa Arredondo, as Francey on the hit TV series So Help Me Todd. Her other TV credits include recurring roles on Roswell, Quantico, and Gone. Rosa Arredondo’s film credits include the Academy Award winning Still Alice, Baby Girl, and Slamdance audience award winner, Silver Tongues. Rosa’s theatre credits include Emily Man’s Broadway revival of A Streetcar Named Desire, the Cherry Lane’s production of The Surgeon And Her Daughters, George Wolfe’s Harlem Song, and the Lincoln Center production of The House of Bernarda Alba.
Rosa's project at Royal Family was I Walked Across the Ocean Floor.
CHRISTINA FRANKLIN / WRITER-DIRECTOR / 2019
A Brooklyn based theatre artist and teacher, Christina began her career as a performer with TADA! Youth Theater at the age of 8. She majored in Musical Theatre at the Professional Performing Arts School. With a BFA in Directing, Playwriting, and Production from the University of The Arts, Christina went on to work with various companies including The Lark, National Black Theatre, and The Signature. Most recently she directed The Wolves at the Professional Performing Arts school, and was the assistant director for White Noise at The Public and Slave Play at New York Theater Workshop. She has written and directed for TADA! Youth Theater, earning several National Youth Theatre awards and nominations. She is so blessed and thankful to be a part of Royal Family!
Christina's play at Royal Family was Worth St.
SHANE W. EVANS / COMPOSER-LYRICIST / 2017
In the business of illustration, design and creative development, Shane Evans is a multi-talented artist and visionary who combines his world travels with his art to influence creative expression in others. He studied at Syracuse University School of Visual and Performing Arts and graduated in 1993 and began traveling the world.
Many of the Shane's books have been featured in the media such as The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Today Show, NBA Inside Stuff, Reading Rainbow and Late Night with David Letterman. He has received much acclaim within the children’s literary field for his work on children’s books such as Osceola, The Way The Door Closes, Shaq and the Beanstalk and Take It To The Hoop Magic Johnson.
Shane's accolades range from being honored by First Lady Laura Bush at the 2002 National Book Festival, The Boston Globe-Horn Book Award and The Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Non-Fiction for Children. And his talent does not stop there. At Royal Family, his first-ever book musical MM2000 was produced, based upon the historic figures of Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X.
JESSICA WU / COMPOSER/LYRICIST/BOOKWRITER / 2017
As a performer, Jessica Wu has worked extensively on Broadway, Off-Broadway, and Regionally and is so grateful to Royal Family for taking a chance on Brass Heart and other works by writers from underrepresented backgrounds. An enormous thank to you Chris Henry for this opportunity.
Jessica's show at Royal Family Productions was Brass Heart The Musical.
KEENAN SCOTT II / PLAYWRIGHT / 2016
Playwright and actor Keenan Scott II, is a native of Queens, New York. He is grateful to be workshopping thoughts of a COLORED MAN on a day when the sun set too early with Chris Henry and Royal Family Productions. Keenan plans to continue to create thought provoking work to change the masses.
At Royal Family, Keenan’s show was thoughts of a COLORED man on a day when the sun set too early.
KRISTIN NEMECEK / ACTOR / 2014
Kristin Nemecek is a graduate of the Hofstra University Department of Drama and Dance. Hofstra credits: Cyrano de Bergerac (Roxane), Intimations for Saxophone (Lily), Two Rooms (Lainie), and Undeclared History (Diana). NYC credits: Dorothy in Oz (Times Square Arts Center), The Associate Producers (Symphony Space), A Chorus Line (The Actors Fund Arts Center), The Storytellers (FringeNYC). Film: Love Bank (New York Film Academy), Self-Portrait (School of Visual Arts).
Her show at Royal Family was Cheesecake Girl.
JESS MOSS / ACTOR / 2013
Jess Moss graduated from Boston University with a BFA in Acting in 2011. She has also studied at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts (LAMDA).
Favorite roles include but are not limited to: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (Maggie), Julius Ceasar (Portia), Cowboy Mouth (Cavale), In the Summer House (Gertrude), Miss Julie (Christine), Be Careful of Words (Anne Sexton).
Jess is a dancer has choreographed Royal Family Productions educational production of Annie and has recently assistant directed One Year Lease’s Skin Tight.
Jess's show at Royal Family was Walking the Volcano.
SUMMER HYDE / COMPOSER-LYRICIST/ACTOR / 2013
Born and raised around the Arkansas delta, Summer Hyde was inspired by a rich combination of musical styles from a very early age—music became a passion and dream for her. After several years making country music, Summer refocused her love and passion on theatre.
She graduated from Arkansas State University with a BFA in Theatre, with a double emphasis in acting and directing. After moving to New York to pursue a career in the theatre, some of her most memorable roles have been Rizzo in Grease and Betty Rogers in Will Rogers Follies.
Summer has been song writing over the past few years, and that passion has started to push itself forward once again. She has been seen around NYC at several open mic nights, and has collaborated with other artists singing her original songs.
Her show at Royal Family was Opal Ann Meets The Fabulous Kit Katt: A Play with Musical Fantasies.
RACHAEL HARRINGTON / DIRECTOR / 2012
Rachael Harrington is an award-winning stage and screen director-producer whose work has been seen at Symphony Space, HERE Arts Center, New York Comedy Festival, The New York Fringe Festival, and Charleston International Film Festival, among others. As a storyteller, Rachael works in schools and community groups across the U.S. as well as in Uganda with Essubi Arts, the non-profit project she co-founded.
Rachael's show at Royal Family was Don Pedro de la Cebolla.
ABIGAIL E. STRANGE / DIRECTOR / 2012
Abigail E. Strange taught theater classes at Brearly Chapin as well as other programs for K, 1st–2nd Grade, and 3rd–4th. She Assistant Directed two Off-Broadway shows through Royal Family, Dedalus Lounge, featuring Anthony Rapp and Dee Roscioli, and Nobody Suspects a Butterfly, featuring Anthony Rapp, Steve Walters, Sean Cullen. In addition, she directed and adapted various children's productions.
Abigail’s Emerging Artist Production at Royal Family was Fireside Theatre, which she directed and co-adapted.