Your Chicago Fringe Staff
Anne Cauley, Executive Director
Anne is thrilled to be working alongside an amazingly talented and hard-working staff and board to produce the Chicago Fringe Festival. She previously worked as the Volunteer Coordinator for the first five festivals. When not obsessing about the magic of Fringe, Anne is the Development Director at Creative Partners. On past adventures, Anne has worked at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Kennedy Center, and Berkshire Theatre Festival.
Hannah Baker, Volunteer Coordinator
After interning for the 7th annual Fringe Festival, Hannah caught the Fringe bug and is so excited to join CFF as their Volunteer Coordinator. Hannah graduated from Skidmore College where she received a B.S. in Theater and Arts Administration and was the former co-producer of the National College Comedy Festival. Originally from Nashville, TN, Hannah is an arts administrator, writer, and director. She currently studies comedy writing and performance at The Second City’s Conservatory Program and enjoys exploring the Chicago theater scene, as well as petting every dog that she can.
Zach Barr, Publicity Manager
Zach is delighted to be joining the Chicago Fringe Festival – and Chicago theatre in general. A native of Redmond, WA (just east of Seattle) and a Class of 2017 Northwestern grad, Zach previously worked as an assistant for Sideshow Theatre Company, an ambassador for the Goodman Theatre, and a freelance critic for Newcity Stage. He works as a director and stage manager around the city during the non-summer months. If he was an animal, Zach would likely be a chameleon or starfish. If you come to the Fringe and see someone wearing a straw boater – you know, the hats that the barbershop quartet in The Music Man wear? – that’s probably him.
Sarah Mikayla Brown, Artist Relations
Sarah Mikayla Brown has been with CFF since the very beginnings as a founder. She currently lives in Lafayette, Louisiana where she teaches Theatre to rural students and performs as much Shakespeare and improv comedy as possible. SMB’s life came full circle when she performed her original 2-woman show “Cajun Face” at the 2015 Chicago Fringe Festival.
Ari Craven, Marketing Manager
Native to the Chicagoland area, Ari is ecstatic to join the Chicago Fringe team as the Marketing Manager. A graduate of the University of Iowa with degrees in Theatre Arts and Studio Arts, Ari has continually found ways to fuse the worlds of performing and visual arts. He has worked with a variety of companies as both a performer and designer including Disney World, Stage 773, The Chicago / Iowa Theatre Collective, and Big Deal Productions. www.aricraven.com
James Anthony Chapman, Project Manager
James Anthony (Gingy) moved to Chicago in 2014 on a bus with two bags from New Orleans with a dream. James has worked with the Evanston Chamber of Commerce, Victory Gardens Theater and Dance With M.E. In Winter of 2016, he served as the Interim Marketing Manager at The Actors Gymnasium and currently serves as the Box Office and House Manager for Pride Films and Plays. James is a Licensed ZUMBA Instructor and is a member of Actors’ Equity Association. His spirit humans are Oprah Winfrey and Viola Davis. His favorite bands are Alabama Shakes and Fleetwood Mac. He has a passion for interior and fashion design, as well as fried chicken. Go #teamfringe!
Bree De Souza, Daytime Fringe Central Manager
Bree couldn’t be more excited to be joining the CFF staff this year. Starting out as a Venue Production Intern with the New York International Fringe Festival in 2015, Bree has not been able to shake off the fringe festival bug. After graduating from the University of Iowa, she packed her bags and moved to Chicago and joined CFF as a stage management intern in 2016. Since moving to the city, Bree has dived into the Chicago theatre seen and has worked as a stage manager on various productions with companies like Emerald City Theatre, Babes With Blades, Spartan Theatre and Runcible Theatre Company. When she’s not in the theatre, you can find her game guiding at The Escape Game Chicago or working gigs with Sofar Sounds Chicago. Bree also really loves Disney, so don’t be surprised if you see her suddenly break out into a disney tune or two. Besides that, she is absolutely thrilled to be working with such a fun and creative bunch of people and can’t wait for you to come check out CFF 2017! See you there!
Jake Ellison, Individual Giving Coordinator
Jake is excited to join the CFF team for their 8th festival after serving as a volunteer in 2016. He is a Chicagoland transplant from the upstate New York cities of Syracuse and Buffalo and only misses the snow just a little bit. Prior to joining CFF his production and performance credits have included the Syracuse Fringe Festival, CNY Playhouse, CNY Shakespeare Co., and Gifford Family Theatre. After graduating from college Jake was briefly employed as a pirate and his voice appears in multiple audiobooks (but he’ll never tell you which ones). He is a proud AmeriCorps alumni and committed to supporting a talented and fringe-y community of artists.
Brian Foster, Technical Director
Brian relocated to Chicago after graduating from Arizona State in 2013. The first thing he did upon arrival to Chicago was to volunteer at CCF 2013. Since the first moment of walking into the work in progress that would be Fringe Central, he knew that he wanted to be a part of the team that brings the festival to life every year. Now he has his chance as Technical Director (luckily he already lost a good portion of his hair so that won’t be a problem).
Brian is also a proud member of The Agency Theater Collective (a relationship he started at CCF). He serves as the company’s literary manager where he runs the Chicago Reconnaissance Imperative, a monthly new play reading series. Any time he isn’t working his day/night/in-between job he can usually be found sitting in front of his computer putting pen to paper (figuratively because he actually uses a keyboard). His fiction can be seen in The Masters Review and the winter 2015 issue of Great Lakes Review.
Adrienne Guldin, Managing Director
Adrienne has experience in the Chicago theatre world in a number of capacities. She has now hung up her backstage hat in favor of working behind the scenes for the Chicago Fringe Festival. She still volunteers for other non-profits in the Chicagoland area. She is the proud mother of three: a girl, a boy and a Fringe.
Emily Hitmar, Associate Production Manager
Emily stumbled upon team production in 2014 as a volunteer. After realizing she couldn’t kick the habit, she joined the staff. To help pass the time between festivals Emily dabbles in freelance as a Stage Manager, touring as a Company and Awards Manager for StarQuest Performing Arts Competitions, and general mayhem as an Event Supervisor for Vittum Theater.
Kristi Keorkunian-Rivers, Billeting Coordinator
Kristi is a multidisciplinary artist, radical mother, and shameless absurdist who volunteered for CFF2015 as a photographer. Her art has been splashed all over, from Subversify Magazine and Offbeat Home & Life to secret dungeons in highly visible areas. She has coordinated social media for the NCSF in Baltimore and was the Editor for DIY:happy.com. She runs a boarding house out of her home, and keeps busy whether she likes it or not. She fell in love with, and married, an incredibly smart left-handed dude, despite her grandfather’s childhood warnings (and swearing off men). Her kids are named after artists and philosophers, but somehow she loves them even more than art and philosophy. For recreation, she reads the Senate Intelligence Committee report on CIA torture, and dreams up weird ways to make her admirers uncomfortable. She hopes one day her quaint little vegetarian family will be proud of her undying commitment to being an eccentric visionary.
Stephanie Niro, Kids Fringe Coordinator
Returning to Chicago after her four year adventure at Miami University in Ohio where she received a B.A. in Theatre and History, Stephanie found herself volunteering for the 2014 Fringe Festival as a box office associate. Loving the new work, creative energy, and amazing people, she is ecstatic to be fringing out with the fringe as the Kids Fringe Coordinator! When Stephanie is not doing fringe-y things she can be found teaching with Northlight Theatre, American Theater Company, and Spotlight Youth Theatre. As well as Stage Managing with For Youth Inquiry (a program through ICAH) and assisting with productions at Rivendell Theatre Ensemble. At home you might find her eating pizza, watching The Office, solving the world’s problems, and dancing with herself.
Katie Prince, Education Coordinator
Katie is thrilled to be starting her journey with CFF this summer! Katie is new to the Chicago area, relocating from Knoxville, Tennessee where she completed a MM in Euphonium performance. Prior to Fringe, Katie has coordinated for the Pride of the Southland Marching Band, Helen Ross McNabb Center, and the International Tuba Euphonium Association. When she’s not at work, Katie enjoys yoga, singing too loud in the car, volunteering at the animal shelter, and the occasional netflix binge. Katie can hardly wait to dive right into the fringey goodness this summer has to offer – it is sure to be unforgettable!
Stacey Schriber, Box Office and Database Manager
Stacey started as a lowly Chicago Fringe intern in 2011 and has never left. Outside of running the Chicago Fringe Festival’s Box Office, Stacey is the hanging out with the animals at the Lincoln Park Zoo where she works in Institutional Giving. Stacey is thrilled to have a supportive arts family in Chicago, especially one full of fellow Whovians. ooo-weee-ooooooooo eee-yoo-ooooooooo…
Amber Southall, Artist Relations Liaison
Traveling between her home in Florida and Michigan where she attended Grand Valley State University for her BA in Human Resources Management, Amber was looking forward to settling back down in her hometown of Chicago. While searching for an internship that would be both unique and engaging, she stumbled upon CFF and got more than she ever expected. After experiencing what being a Fringer was all about, Amber was instantly captivated and declared herself a Fringer for life. Now, as a recent graduate currently employed as the Distribution Manager at IKANN Inc., she is completely ecstatic to join the team as the new Artist Relations Liaison. In her down time, Amber often finds herself attempting new recipes from pinterest, fangirling over Kpop and Kdrama and randomly blurting out movie quotes or song lyrics that relate to what was just said.
Fareine Suarez, Fringe Central Events Manager
Fareine jumped head first into Fringe as part of the stage management team in 2015 and is thrilled to join the staff this year as the Fringe Central Events Manager. By day, she markets things and communicates stuff, and in her free time works on short films, tutors kids, dances like a fool, and sometimes sleeps. She feels so lucky to be embraced into such a vibrant and talented community. On the last Saturday of each month, you can find her making art with Bring Your Own Theatre Productions, a 24-hour theatre company.
Rachel Staelens, Project Manager
Rachel has been on staff since year one and hasn’t lost an ounce of her fringe passion. She is a freelance director and manager around town. Her most recent work includes creating/directing Down the Moonlit Path, presented by Nothing Without a Company, with whom she is a artistic associate, as well as script workshops with a number of Chicago playwrights, including a 12-hour epic of Greek mythology. This summer she will be directing Shotgun Preemie, with Nothing Without a Company, and producing and directing as show in the Chicago Fringe Festival – her first time as a performance group! She loves Fringe work and is ecstatic to be helping build an amazing festival where fringe artists can share their work with people from all over the city, nation and world.
Kelly Wren, Project Manager
Kelly is excited to be working at CFF for the first time this summer. She is a recent graduate of The Second City Training Center’s Improvisation Conservatory and continues to study and perform improv and sketch comedy at various Chicago theatres. Kelly has also worked for The New Colony as a stage manager and Youth Company Chicago as an education intern and currently works at Steppenwolf Theatre as an Audience Outreach Associate. Until recently, Kelly was a full-time high school English and ESL teacher in the Chicagoland suburbs where she directed four fully produced high school plays and musicals. After what some may call a quarter-life renaissance, she has decide to pursue a career in theatrical arts. Kelly is entering Roosevelt University’s MA for Performing Arts Administration to pursue her dreams of performance and performing arts management. You can often catch Kelly in her natural habit of performing, writing, directing, and all things theatre because this girl does not rest (you may catch her eating cold pizza- girl’s gotta eat!).
A Special Thanks To…
Kathleen Geraghty with Kathleen Geraghty Communications
Charles Riffenburg with Grab Bag Media
James Juliano with Shout Media
The Fringe Board of Directors
Bridget Hennessy, President
Latin School of Chicago
Fringiest Thing About Bridget: Up for any wild city adventure
Amanda Dodge, Secretary
PERL Mortgage, Inc.
Fringiest Thing About Amanda: Ocassionally wears fake mustaches for fun
Emily Brouilette, Treasurer
Ameriprise Financial Services
Fringiest Thing About Emily: Rick Springfield laughed at me
TALASKE Sound Thinking
Fringiest Thing About Hannah: Unofficial Fringe Curtain Speech Award Recipient
Sarah Mikayla Brown
St. Martin Parish Schools
Fringiest Thing About Hannah: I like gas station food
MG Design Associates
Fringiest Thing About Marisa: Used to show pigs in 4-H
Leigh Anna Sodac
Fringiest Thing About Leigh Anna: Wrote Blog for ABC’s The Bachelor
Fringe Advisory Board
- Diana Ewert, Affiliate Affairs – American Osteopathic Association
- Avra Fainer, BMO Harris Bank
- Todd and Marrakesh Frugia, ROOMS Productions
- Justin Fyala, Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington DC
- Deborah Granite, Director & Venue/Coordinator Liaison, The Saints
- Vincent Lacey, Chicago Fringe Festival co-founder
- Howard Lieberman, Lieberman-Nelson
- Brian Loevner, Chicago Commercial Collective
- Holly Payton, Director, World Festival Network
- Tracy Wray, Zenefits
Fringe Distinguished Alumni
- Samay Gheewala
- Luke Harmon
- Katie Leisner
- Tim Mullaney
- Laura Scruggs
- Schoen Smith
- Tracy Wray