Here you'll find People who love Kids and Theater, dedicated to:
--The kids and their camp experience
--Theater as a lively, dynamic art
Our staff are confident, motivated, and theatrically gifted. They are here to help make your child's camp experience more interesting, fun, and where appropriate for that particular child, challenging, so that children can take their next step in theatrical expression.
NOTE: This page shows our 2015 staff. While we expect many returns, we also might have some new people joining our team in 2016. [Oregon camp staff biographies on top; scroll down lower for Vermont staff]
Torsti Rovainen, Camp Director
Portland & Vermont Camps
As director, Torsti Rovainen organizes and oversees all camp operations; directs and choreographs scenes for the play; schedules rehearsals; leads theater workshops and activities; supports and directs camp staff; and acts as the primary parent liaison before and during camp. Torsti is very happy to offer Inspirations Theater Camps as a place for children and adults to come together to create a special theater and community experience. He has written and scored four musicals.
Darlene Sorensen, Portland Camp Acting Specialist
Darlene Sorensen truly believes that “all the world is a stage.” Playing is one of her greatest passions, whether it is through theater, dance, or in the routine of daily life. Darlene holds a B.F.A in Theatre and an M.A. in counseling psychology—emphasis in drama therapy. She has over 20 years experience performing in a variety of venues. She has facilitated improv workshops and drama therapy for life skills enhancement, personal growth, customer service skills, performance and just plain fun. Darlene loves dance, reading, experimenting with cooking and rarely finds life boring (with the exception of tax receipt organizing). She is blessed with a daughter and partner, who fill her life with joy, depth and laughter.
She is excited to return for a second year at Inspirations Camp!
Cheri Riznyk, Inspirations Camp Theater Staff
Cheri has loved theater since her first role as a Munchkin and a Winkie. She has been studying and performing theater, performance art and improv, along with fine art, for twenty years. She has a B.F.A. from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Waldorf education has been another enduring love--Cheri studied Waldorf Teacher Training in Honolulu, Hawaii, and home schools her daughter in a Waldorf-inspired way. Cheri loves kids and anything to do with creativity and imagination. She adores play! She lives with her 13-year old daughter, some fish, a canary, and a big, fat cat in a house bursting with color.
Voni Kengla, Theater Staff
Voni has been passionate about theater since before she can remember and is excited to share her enthusiasm with campers. She has been involved in many theater productions through Staged, Northwest Children’s Theater and The Lakewood Theater. Voni will be off to the University of Hartford this fall to pursue her BFA in Musical Theater. She enjoys being active, playing games and singing as loudly as she can.
Tim Ribner, Music Specialist
Tim Ribner obtained a BFA in jazz performance at New School University in NYC. During his time in New York, he music directed for Jacques D'Amboise' National Dance Institute, as well as for the Harlem School of the Arts and for various productions at Columbia University. In Portland, Tim has worked for the Northwest Children's Theater and has helped with productions for Rosemary Anderson High School.
Carey Gunn, Inspirations Camp Executive Assistant
Carey Gunn has experienced many aspects of Inspirations Camp for the 2014 Princess and The Pauper production. She has been the camp administrative assistant, vocalist for the musical pre-recording, kid herder and driver for recording and preview performances, and is excited to help where she can. When away from camp duties, Carey enjoys time with her family, hiking with her dog Bella, singing, and learning to play the guitar.
Carey is also our camp's Financial Manager. Any tuition-related questions can go to her at email@example.com
Bella Gunn, Camp Cheerleader (Oregon camp)
Although Bella may not be with us too much this summer, she will come by to visit when she can. Bella Gunn, also known as Doodle, enjoys the many dress-up sessions, fashion shows, and nail painting sessions that her human sisters have her participate in. Her acting career includes playing the part of The Bride in several family backyard weddings, although truth be told, she did run from the altar once in her wedding dress and had to be chased down the street. Bella enjoys wiggling excitedly, chasing tennis balls repeatedly, rolling in mud puddles, being in the middle of things, and giving slurpee kisses. She is five years old, and is of lab and border collie heritage.
VERMONT CAMP staff
Amos Byrne, Acting Specialist 1st week of camp
Amos Byrne has done theater since he entered grade school is excited for his second summer of directing young people. He loves expressing himself through theater and seeing all the different parts of people that come out through the roles they inhabit. Amos has done theater in school since he was diminutive in size and has also participated in various summer theater programs over the years, including four Chandler Fourth of July shows and 6 years of the Chelsea Funnery. He will be returning to Champlain College in Burlington this fall to continue his studies in video game design. He is excited to return to Inspirations Camp for a second season!
Izzi Byrne, Youth Director
Isabella "Izzi" Byrne loves both theater and working with kids, and is excited for an opportunity to do both at Inspirations Camp for a second season. She believes that theater is a great way to encourage kids to come out of their comfort zone and try on different personas they wouldn't otherwise have the chance to. Izzi has performed in many school productions at Wellspring and the Sharon Academy, as well as the Get Thee to the Funnery Shakespeare camp, and Chandler Music Hall Summer Productions. She loves to read and spending time with her family and friends.
Edie Langdell, Acting Specialist 2nd week of camp
Edie Langdell is excited to work at Inspirations Camp for a second summer because she has always loved acting ever since her first play in fourth grade, and she can't wait to help younger kids discover how fun and exciting acting and singing can be. She loves kids and can't wait to get to know them this summer. Edie has been in a school play the past seven years. She has also gone to The Chelsea Funnery, a Shakespeare acting summer camp, for six years. Besides acting and singing, Edie enjoys dancing, drawing, painting, fashion and costume design, sewing, and cooking.
Jasmine Rosalbo, Youth Director
Jasmine Rosalbo can't wait to work with children this summer in Chelsea on The Boy Who Kept A Secret. She loves music and theater, but musical theater especially. She is excited to work with kids, and to share what she knows with them, as well as listen to what they have to offer. Jasmine has been in many play and musical productions throughout her life, including a Rovainen musical during her eighth grade year at Wellspring Waldorf School. In her spare time she enjoys singing show tunes as loudly as she can, and reading. She is so happy to be able to be a part of this experience, and return to Inspirations Camp for a second year!
Kevin Quigley Music Specialist 1st week of camp
Kevin Quigley has been working as a professional performer, composer, director, producer, and teacher for nearly 25 years. His first love is cross-media collaboration - getting artists of different disciplines together together to create and perform new work. He holds a B.F.A. in Classical Voice from Carnegie Mellon University and has performed on stage in productions ranging from opera to music theater and jazz to avant grade works. Kevin currently holds teaching positions at the Upper Valley Waldorf School, the Sharon Academy, and the Community College of Vermont. He is the director of the Thetford Chamber Singers and lead producer of FEARless: a performer’s pot-luck event that examines how we encounter fear in our daily lives. Kevin enjoys working with artists of all ages and is rearing to roll up his sleeves for this production.
Laurie Demrow Afternoon Art Coordinator
I am an artist, writer, student and teacher. I love to make art objects out of whatever is at hand: flowers, paper and crayons, paint, feathers, or fur. After having assisted last year at Inspirations Camp, I am excited to be supporting the children in creation of our masks for the performance! When I am not teaching, studying, or creating, I am out running, biking, or hiking with my wonderful dog, and best friend Brock.