Contact Us

Faculty

Cara Gargano

Cara Gargano is chair of the Department of Theatre, Film, Dance & Arts Management and professor of dance and theatre at LIU Post. A former dancer she studied at the New York School of Ballet under Richard Thomas and Barbara Fallis and later taught at the school; she has worked with US Terpsichore Co, the Empire State Ballet, Garden State Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre; her concert choreography for Cara Gargano Dance Co. has received warm reviews from The New York Times and has been presented in France, and Switzerland, as well as in the United States. As a stage director and choreographer, she has worked in theatre, opera, and musical comedy. She holds a Ph.D. in French language and literature from the City University Graduate Center and has published in both English and French in Modern Drama, Reliologiques, Dance Research Journal, Theatre Research International, and New Theatre Quarterly. She has provided chapters for several books including Mythes dans la littérature contemporaine d'expression française, Réécritures des mythes: utopie au feminine, Réécritures de Madeleine Monette, Anne-Marie Alonzo: Collection d'essais,and most recently, Hermes-Aphrodite Encounters. A member of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education, the National Association of Schools of Dance, the National Association of Schools of Theatre, the Modern Language Association, and the Society for Dance History Scholars, she is currently in her second term as President of the Congress on Research in Dance, and serves a choreography peer reviewer for the National Dance Association Promotion and Tenure Initiative.

Rick DesRochers

Rick DesRochers, Associate Professor of theatre, teaches theatre history, dramaturgy and directing. He has served as the literary director for the Joseph Papp Public Theater/New York Shakespeare Festival and The Goodman Theatre of Chicago. Prior to his tenure at The Public Theater, he was the artistic director of the New Theater of Boston for six seasons, where he produced and directed over fifty new plays and musicals. He is a member of the Society for Stage Directors and Choreographers, and in New York City he has been director and dramaturg for several theater companies including the New York Music Theatre Festival, Joe¹s Pub at the Public Theater, NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Circle Repertory Theatre/Circle East, Rude Mechanicals, and for regional theaters across the country including The Playwrights' Center of Minneapolis, The Goodman Theatre, PlayPenn of Philadelphia, The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Signature Theatre, The Boston Center for the Arts, Chicago Dramatists, Live Bait Theater, and Teatro Vista, as well as internationally for The Soho Theatre of London. He has also written several plays including Vegas Baby! (co-written with Gerrit O'Neill produced by Live Bait Theater, Chicago), Lady Trane: A Love Supreme (produced by the New Theatre, Boston), and A Point of Departure (produced by the Huntington Theatre company, Boston), and has translated plays from the French including Cheech by François Létourneau (produced at the Melbourne Theatre Company in Australia), and Molière's Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme (entitled The King of Quality, produced by the New Theatre). Professor DesRochers has taught in theatre departments across the country including the New York University Tisch School of the Arts Dramatic Writing Program, New School University, Emerson College, DePaul University, Chicago Conservatory for the Performing Arts at Roosevelt University, and the University of Texas at Austin. He holds a master of fine arts degree in stage direction and dramaturgy from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. E-mail: rick.desrochers@liu.edu

Maria Porter

Maria Porter is a full-time faculty member in the Theatre department. She has worked with Tadashi Suzuki and Anne Bogart both here and in Japan. She has incorporated this work into company training, making LIU Post one of the only undergraduate programs in the country to offer Suzuki training as part of its core curriculum. She holds a B.F.A. and M.F.A. from University of California, Berkley. Professor Porter conceived and directed Third Child, a performance based on the myth of Orestes, which performed at the International University Theatre Associations World Congress in Urbino, Italy. Acting credits include Barbara in Inky, Skriker in Skriker (KC/ACTF), the mother in Henry Fool and Piaf in Piaf.

Robert Wildman

Robert Wildman joined LIU Post in the fall of 2011 as Director of the Arts Management program after eight years at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts (UNCSA) where he created the MFA program in Performing Arts Management. Prior to UNCSA, Robert spent seven years as Managing Director of Connecticut Repertory Theatre (CRT), the performance arm of the Department of Dramatic Arts at the University of Connecticut. Robert joined CRT after a nine-year career in arts marketing in New Haven, at Yale Repertory Theatre/Yale School of Drama, and Long Wharf Theatre. Robert has also worked at the Mark Taper Forum and American Conservatory Theatre in his native California, and was Interim Manager of the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center. He has also taught in the Yale School of Drama’s MFA program in Theatre Administration, and the distance-learning M.A. program in Arts Administration at Goucher College. He has served on grantmaking panels for the Connecticut Commission on the Arts, Theatre Communications Group, the Adam Foundation and the Arts & Science Council of Charlotte-Mecklenburg County. He currently serves on the board of the Association of Arts Administration Educators and has served on the boards of the North Carolina Theatre Conference, the Adam Foundation, and the Arts Council of Greater New Haven. He is a graduate of the Yale School of Drama and Stanford University.

Bill Motyka

Bill Motyka, director of Design & Production, began his association with LIU Post in 1981 designing scenery for 'Tis Pity She's a Whore. After completing his M.F.A. in design from NYU/Tisch School of the Arts, Professor Motyka was busy assisting designers David Mitchell, Heidi (Landesman) Ettinger, Bob Phillips, Jim Clayburgh, and others on projects ranging the gamut from the Broadway revival of Can-Can, NBC's Another World to the Wooster Group's LSD: The High Points. In 1985 Professor Motyka was asked to join the faculty at LIU Post as resident designer, a position he held until 1989. That year he became Director of Design & Production and remained in that full-time position until 2005. Professor Motyka has returned to an ever expanding free-lance design career and is still maintaining ties with the Post Theatre Company, the students and teaching scenic and lighting design. He is a member of United Scenic Artists 829.

Erik Andrews

Erik Andrews is an actor and teacher based in New York City. As an actor he has performed with several NYC based companies and with regional theatres including The Pittsburgh Public Theatre, The Cleveland Play House, Washington DC's Fords Theatre, The Olney Theatre for the Performing Arts in Maryland, among others. Assistant Director: Lisa Kron's 2.5 Minute Ride, Altered Stages, NYC, and Anton Chekhov's Uncle Vanya Sonnet Rep, NYC. He is a candidate for teacher certification with the Michael Chekhov Association. Education: M.F.A. - professional actor training program at The Cleveland Play House in conjunction with Case Western Reserve University; B.F.A. - Carnegie Mellon University; Certificate - The Royal National Theatre Studio in London. Erik Andrews is a member of the Actors Equity Association.

Valerie Clayman Pye, PhD.

Valerie Clayman Pye is a professional actor, director, theatre scholar, and educator who has worked in these capacities both in the US as well as in the UK, where she was recognized for her devised productions as well as her scholarship. Valerie holds a PhD in Performance Practice in Drama from the University of Exeter, where she was funded by the British Government to examine the relationship between Shakespeare’s plays and the reconstruction of The Globe Theatre and to devise an original actor-training methodology based upon that relationship.

Valerie is passionate about working with actors to develop their vocal instruments so they can both serve the texts they speak as well as help forge the strongest relationships between actors and audiences. She has served as a voice and speech coach for theatre, film, and television with Academy, Emmy, and Golden Globe award nominees. Valerie specializes in neutralizing regional dialects for standard American speech.

Valerie also holds a MFA in Staging Shakespeare with Distinction from the University of Exeter, as well as a MFA in Acting from Brooklyn College.

Dr. Andrea Stulman Dennett

Dr. Andrea Stulman Dennett has a Ph.D. in performance studies from NYU. She has written numerous articles on the field of performance and popular entertainment and is the author of Weird and Wonderful: The Dime Museum in America. She has been teaching at LIU Post since 1999.

David Hugo

David Hugo received a BFA in acting from Syracuse University and moved directly to NYC where he worked as an actor in regional theater, National tours, and on Broadway. He was last seen on Broadway playing the role of Grantaire in Les Miserables where he also had the honor of understudying Terrance Mann in the role of Javert. After twelve years working professionally, he returned to school to receive a master’s degree in theater in order to teach aspiring young actors. He received his master’s degree from LIU Post in 2006, where he had the distinct pleasure of studying under Maria Porter, Benjamin Moore, and Cara Gargano. He is thrilled to be able to start his teaching career among such inspiring professors and artists.

Jon Fraser

In 1983, playwright/director Jon Fraser was driving to Montauk to begin an Edward Albee Foundation Fellowship in playwriting. Along the way, nature called, and the next possible exit said “Southampton College.” He took the exit, and wandered into what looked like a theatre, in search of a rest room. He got caught by a man who turned out to be the Director of Humanities, and two weeks later, began teaching his first course in theatre as an adjunct at Southampton. Within two years, he was asked to take over the then ailing student radio station, since after his graduation from Columbia University, he had worked as a writer for WCBS-TV News. With radio and theatre assignments, he became a full-time faculty member in 1985. He proposed, and LIU created, the affiliation with Public Radio, and the station flourished into what is now the LIU radio network. Several years later, he became the Division Director for Arts & Media at Southampton. He completed his Master of Fine Arts degree in dramatic writing at Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. In 1996, he transferred to LIU Post, first as Assistant Dean for the School of Visual & Performing Arts, then becoming Associate Dean the next year, and became Acting Dean of the school upon the retirement of Dean Emeritus Lynn Croton. He then became Senior Associate Dean before returning to the faculty in 2008. At Post, he has taught courses in acting, directing and playwriting, and film. He has been active in the Association for Theatre in Higher Education, holding the national office of Treasurer of the organization for two terms. His most recent publication is a series of biographical essays in The Gay & Lesbian Theatrical Legacy, published by The University of Michigan Press in 2005. He continues to write plays and screenplays, and is a member of Circle East Theatre Company in New York City.

Christine Catti

In addition to being a professional stage manager in the theatrical industry, Christine Catti has been teaching Stage Management at LIU Post for ten years. New York credits include: The Radio City Christmas Spectacular; Broadway: Judgment at Nuremberg with Maximilian Schell; She Loves Me with Boyd Gaines. Off-Broadway: Oscar and The Pink Lady with Rosemary Harris; Address Unknown with Jim Dale; Tea at Five with Kate Mulgrew; The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui with Al Pacino; and The Exact Center of the Universe with Frances Sternhagen just to name a few. Regional credits include Tell Me on a Sunday with Alice Ripley at The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. She has toured the country with Tea at Five and brought the American production of All in the Timing to Vienna’s English Theater in Austria.