Raymond Colon, Volunteer Since 2006
By day, Raymond Colon is works in the Production department at Macmillan. In his spare time, he serves as one of Possibility Project’s most devoted volunteers. Over the past several years, he has endeared himself to our staff and teenagers, and has truly become a critical member of our team. We asked Ray a few questions about his involvement with our program…
TPP: What role do you play in The Possibility Project?
RC: I began as an usher in 2006, and now I help out as one of the Assistant Stage Managers for each production. I’m also a FAP (Friendly Adult Presence) in one Saturday rehearsal per month.
TPP: Why did you decide to become involved with The Possibility Project?
RC: The organization’s mission resonated with me and anything I could do to help was fine by me. Additionally, at the time, I didn’t have much theater involvement and this seemed a perfect opportunity to be involved again.
TPP: Why do you continue to use your talents with Possibility Project now?
RC: I enjoy working with the staff and actors to help create the next show. I’m always excited to see the transformation from the raw to the complete (sometimes over days) and see how much the entire process affects, in a positive way, all those involved.
TPP: What is different or unique about The Possibility Project that makes it worthwhile for you?
RC: What I love about The Possibility Project is the rawness of it all. The fact that the actors come from such varied backgrounds and life experiences – and many times having no theater experience at all. It’s a great challenge for everyone involved to create something original, exciting, and meaningful time after time, yet it happens.
TPP: What impact do you aim to make with the teenagers you work with in Possibility Project?
RC: In my particular niche in the process, I hope to provide the teens something consistent and reassuring. I want to be able to focus them to their show so that they perform the best show of their life. It means creating an environment conducive to getting those emotions and energy on stage.
TPP: What is the biggest challenge you face in working with teenagers in The Possibility Project?
RC: Remembering that they are indeed teenagers. Given the nature of the themes and subjects that Possibility Project tackles, it’s easy to forget that despite the level of maturity the teens have in dealing with the subject matter, they are still young people still growing up and dealing with high school and the like. Realizing that, it’s amazing what they end up achieving at the end of the process.
TPP: What is your favorite part of working with teenagers in The Possibility Project?
RC: Their energy and spirit. It’s reassuring and refreshing to see the next generation with so much passion, creativity, and thought that it keeps me optimistic for the future. It reminds to stay young at heart and to take the little challenges in life in stride and to confront the large ones with honesty and heart.
TPP: Given your abundance of talents, why do you choose to use them to create change? Where does that motivation come from?
RC: Because a stagnant world will never improve. I believe in some far-off future that we will indeed be amongst the stars and meeting other civilizations in peace, but to create that future, we need to start here in our neighborhood. We need to start small and plant those seeds here and now so that they may grow into forces of right and change. When you are witness to the state of the world today, one must charge ahead in belief that it will change and that the change can only start within yourself.
What I love about The Possibility Project is the rawness of it all.
- Musical Directors
- Assistant Artistic Directors
- Technical Theatre Specialists
- Acting Coaches
- Photography, Videography, & Video Editing
- Artistic Directors
Jamie Cowperthwait, 2013-Present | Saturday Program
Jamie Cowperthwait is a composer and playwright working in theater, television, and film. In May 2011, he graduated from Tisch’s Graduate Musical Theater Writing Program where he co-wrote the twenty-minute King Gilbert, the full-length Huntington, and the full-length The Music of Erich Zann. He also wrote a ten-minute musical called Exit Row that was performed as part of the 2010 Pace University Director’s Festival. He has written or co-written the scores to a number of short films including, “Lately There Have Been Many Misunderstandings,” and “Comfort Zone.” Recently, he wrote the theme song for the popular web series Awkward Family Photos. When not writing for theater and film, he writes music and lyrics for commercial clients, including Coca Cola, Sears, Netflix, the state of California, and others. In 2011-12, he was the Musical Theater Resident at Playwrights Horizons in New York City. He lives in Ridgewood, Queens and thoroughly enjoys working with The Possibility Project!
Nate Weida, 2013-Present | Foster Care Program
Nate Weida is a composer and writer living in Hell’s Kitchen. He has written 8 musicals and currently plays in a bluegrass band called “Great Dog Almighty” and is writing an epic poem called I’s Twinkle. He plays piano, flute, banjo, didgeridoo, and sings.
Victoria Netanus Grubbs, 2015-Present | Youth Justice Program & After-School Program
Victoria Netanus Grubbs is an educator/musician/scholar in New York City, New York. Her professional interests include youth development and creativity, essentialism and identity, place and belonging, performance theory, and cultural production through public education. She is an arts educator with a focus on developing and supporting revolutionary thinkers and bold new leaders in underserved communities in the U.S. and abroad.
Wesley Zurick, 2016-Present | Youth Justice Program
Wesley Zurick is an actor/musician/composer/playwr
Elia Einhorn, 2013-2016 | After-School Cast
Maiysha Cade, 2010-Present | Foster Care Program, After-School Program, Youth Justice Program
Maiysha Cade, a Boston native, is a dance teacher and choreographer with various New York youth organizations such as Wingspan Arts and SOCAPA. She is a professional dancer represented by the BLOC Dance Agency, and has performed commercially for NIKE, MTV, LG Electronics, and Ryan Leslie. For several years Maiy was a dancer for Radio Disney Boston and a dancer for the NBAs Boston Celtics. Maiysha attended The Boston Ballet School for Performing Arts, and was spent time as a member of the hip hop dance company, Phunk Phenomenon. Maiy joined The Possibility Project in March 2010.
Stephanie Simpson, 2015-Present | Foster Care Program
Stephanie is a contemporary and musical theatre choreographer and performing artist based in NYC. She received her B.A. from Emerson College in Boston and her Masters of Fine Arts in Dance Performance and Choreography at Smith College in Northampton, MA, where she was also a teaching fellow at the college and guest artist at Mount Holyoke College. Previously, Stephanie lived in Los Angeles where she was a member of two modern dance companies, toured throughout southern California, and performed with a variety of theatres. She has received an NAACP Award for Best Choreography for “Ragtime: The Musical” and was nominated for an NAACP Award for Best Choreography for her work on “Dreams in Variation,” Stephanie was a scholarship student at Jacob’s Pillow’s Jazz/Musical Theatre Dance program and has served on the faculty at Central CT State University, Elms College, and The Hartt School. She is currently building the dance program at Riverdale Country School in the Bronx and is a co-founder/artistic director of Reject Dance Theatre. Stephanie will be serving as choreographer for the Foster Care Program for a third year in 2017.
JoiLynn, 2016-Present | After-School Program
JoiLynn is a dance artist utilizing her movement mastery across many platforms .She trained at the Duke Ellington School of the Arts, Boston Conservatory and The Ailey School in addition to studying Haitian folkloric dance and Hip Hop styles in the underground scene in NYC. Noted performances have been for Regis and Kelly, Maybelline, Jimmy Kimmel, The Ellen Show, Coachella, The Juno awards , Impulse Dance Company, Balance Dance Theatre, Ase Dance Theatre Collective, Jay Z, , Laura Pausini, The Apollo Club,as a lead in the dance theatre show “Voodoo Queen”, and as part of the developmental cast of the Broadway shows “Journey to the West” based on Bruce Lee’s life and “Holler if you Hear me” based on the work of Tupac Shakur. She has also been a lead dancer in shows, tours and videos for recording artist Kiesza . She is a vocalist and songwriter, an actress with a passion for scfi/action work , and is the owner/director of JoiLynn Productions creating and choreographing innovative dance collaborations. www.JoiLynn.com
Angel Kaba, 2016-Present | Saturday Program
Artistic/Creative Director, choreographer and dance teacher Angel Kaba began her artistic career with ballet at the tender age of 6, which she pursued for more than 15 years. She also studied music theory and theater at the Music Academy of Brussels in Belgium. Beside her artistic path, she graduated with honors in Marketing from a business school in 2005. In 2006, she started working on her first musical for children entitled “Elya’s Dream”. By then, she had already founded her own performance company, Contre- Tendance. Her primary goal is to train artists and to create opportunities for them to express themselves on stage. “Believe in your dreams and try hard to reach them” is the leitmotif she keeps repeating to her company’s artists. In 2009 Angel won a dance competition launched by the NUTELLA brand in Europe. She won the chance to fly to New York, where she perfected her training in ballet, street jazz and Hip Hop at the BROADWAY DANCE CENTER and later the ALVIN AILEY EXTENSION PERIDANCE CAPEZIO CENTER and STEPS ON BROADWAY. During that period, she met and was spotted by her mentor Ms. ROBIN DUNN F.A.C.E. Coach, a choreographer and dance teacher who has established herself as one of the key community leaders within the entertainment industry today.
Rozz Nash, 2003-2010 | Marguerite Hemmings, 2011-2015 | Jonathan Gonzalez, 2015-2016
Rozz Nash, 2007-2012 | Courtney Self, 2015-2016
Dyvonne Santillan, 2010-2011 (The Possibility Project Alumni)
Ric Serrano III, 2011
Rachel Firestone, 2013
Alex Hartline, 2014
Alana Hartman, 2011-2012
Rachel Cole, 2010
Desiree De Cahlo, 2012
Aaron Kliner, 2013
Rocio Lopez, 2011
Ashley Marie Ortiz, 2015-2017
Aditi Rao, 2011
Caitlin Wood, 2014
Jean Tejeda, 2014 (The Possibility Project Alumni)
Caley Vickerman, 2008-2009
Foster Care Program
Charlene Adams, 2013-2014 (The Possibility Project Alumni)
Niquana Clark, 2015-2016 (The Possibility Project Alumni)
Michael Dew, 2013 (The Possibility Project Alumni)
Youth Justice Program
Nehprii Amenii, 2016
Marion Elaine Lopez, 2016
Assistant Stage Managers
Raymond Colon, 2008-Present | Caitlin Davies, 2014 | Sarah Duncan, 2013-2014 | Yaquarra Greene, 2016 | Sarah Haber. 2013 | Alana Hartman, 2010-2013 | Randy Lopez, 2015-2016 | Erica Ortiz, 2012 (The Possibility Project Alumni) | Lillian Osei-Boateng, 2008-2010 (The Possibility Project Alumni) | Claribelle Pagan, 2014-2015 (The Possibility Project Alumni) | Abraham Smith, 2014 (The Possibility Project Alumni)
Tina Newhauser, 2002 | Sean Perry, 2003-Present
Adam Bach, 2011 | Dylan Carrow, 2009-2013 | David Corsello, 2012 | Ryan Hall, 2013-Present | Gregory Kostroff, 2007-2009 | Mark Parenti, 2009-2010 | Daniel Spitaliere, 2011 | Matthew Wilson, 2015
Tina Newhause, 2002 | Alison Kozin, 2003-Present | Molly Kaufhold, 2011 | Andrea Martin, 2009-Present | Jake Witlen, 2007-2010
John Eckert – Board Operator, 2012 | Jenna Lazar – Board Operator, 2011 | James O’Connell – Technical Assistant, 2009-2010 |
Matthew Patrick – Stagehand / Follow Spot, 2010
Bill Bowers – Mime and Movement, 2004-2011 Visit Bill’s website | Karen Goldfarb, 2010 | Mariam Habib, 2011 | Alana Hartman, 2011-2012 | Aaron Kliner, 2008-2014 | Matt Maher, 2008-2014 | April Nickell, 2013 | Angela Santillo, 2011-2014 | Whitney Snow, 2014 | Jean Michel-Tejada, 2016 | Caley Vickerman, 2010-2011 | Robert White, 2012
Marieve Amy, 2012-Present
Rocio Lopez, 2010-2011
Nicholas Marulanda, 2011
John Vitagliano, 2010
—Visit John’s website
Destimona Anokye, 2008-2010 (The Possibility Project Alumni)
Michael Berland, 2009 (The Possibility Project Alumni)
Juan Carlos Pineiro-Escoriaza, 2010
—Visit Juan Carlos’ profile
Jeff Flowers, 2004-2013 | Saturday Program
Jeff Flowers has worked as an actor, director and trainer for over 15 years. After receiving a B.F.A in Acting from U.C. Santa Barbara, Jeff founded a theater company, worked as both an actor and director, and became the Artistic Director of City at Peace-Santa Barbara. After moving to New York in 2004, Jeff became the Artistic Director of The Possibility Project’s Saturday Cast. He has directed 11 original musical theater productions with TPP. Additionally he has become a leading Business Development trainer, specializing in using the principles of improvisational theater to develop the skills of creativity, team-building and effective communication for business professionals.
Elizabeth Howard Phillips, 2004-2016 | After-School Program
Elizabeth was a part of The Possibility Project for fifteen years. She began as the Assistant Artistic Director for the Saturday Cast and then took on the formation of The Possibility Project’s after school program as the Artistic Director in 2007. Since its inception, the After School Cast has doubled in size and has completed four successful full length musicals and numerous community action projects. Elizabeth also worked with founder Paul Griffin to develop the TPP program dedicated to youth in foster care. She continues to assist with this program and was an integral part of the production of the TPP foster care film “Know How.” Prior to her work with TPP, Elizabeth worked as an actor in both New York and Chicago. She studied acting and theater at NYU, Steppenwolf Theatre and Victory Gardens Theatre. Elizabeth graduated from Loyola University of Maryland with a degree in Speech and Language Pathology.
Kenny Phillips 2012-2017 | Foster Care and Youth Justice Programs
Kenny first began volunteering for The Possibility Project as an acting coach in 2005 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. From 2007-2009 he continued to work for TPP as the Artistic Director of that program. In 2012, Kenny relocated to New York to lead the Foster Care Program, and in fall 2015, he launched TPP’s first Youth Justice Program. Kenny holds a B.A. in Communication Studies and has been involved in the arts since the age of four. He has studied music and theater passionately for over twenty years.