Lisa Wagner-Carollo is the Founding Director of Still Point Theatre Collective. She founded the company in 1993, motivated by a strong desire to combine ministry and theatre. Ever since, she has toured the country and overseas with Haunted by God: The Life of Dorothy Day. Wagner has also performed in and produced (for Still Point), the internationally toured Points of Arrival: A Jean Donovan Journey, a play that explores the life and commitment of one of the four North American church women killed in El Salvador in 1980. Lisa also works as a facilitator in Still Point’s outreach programs. Her education includes a B.S.E. from Emporia State University. Recently, she completed her certification as a spiritual director at Siena Center in Racine, Wisconsin and has begun a spiritual direction practice in the Chicago area. Awards: Outstanding Recent Graduate, Emporia State University, 1997Seeds of Hope Award, Wheatridge, 2009.
Héctor Álvarez is a writer, actor and director from Spain. He loves travel and all things theatrical, and in his work as a performer and teaching artist he seeks to generate inspiring conversations around works of art, ideas and artistic practices. In 2009 he received a Watson Fellowship to study community theater companies in Mexico, Argentina, Brazil that served populations who had suffered from trauma. He has studied at Augusto Boal’s Center for the Theater of the Oppressed in Rio de Janeiro and has an MA in English Literature from University College London. He recently presented his one-man American epic about gun violence “The Ghoul Exhibition” in Chicago, New York and Austin. He’s thrilled to be part of Still Point Theater Collective.
Yahaira Landaverry of Guatemalan descendent, came to the Windy City at the age of ten years old and has lived in Chicago since then. Graduated from Fox College in 2004 with an Associate’s Degree in Associate of Applied Science in Administration. Soon before graduating, she started working for The National Federation of Priests’ Councils until February of 2014 where she met Lisa Wagner. At the present moment, she volunteers as the Secretary for her church, Sublime Gracia; she’s also part of the Administrative Board, Worship Team and leads the Youth Group along with her husband of 10 years. They have a 2-year old boy, Nathan.
Anita Dacanay – Administrative Support/Social Media Manager
Anita Dacanay graduated from Wright State University’s Professional Actor Training Program in 1988. She moved to Chicago where she lived and worked as an actress, performance artist, and arts educator for 13 years. She is currently living in Shaker Heights, Ohio with her two children. She taught Performing Arts classes for adults with developmental disabilities through the Cuyahoga County Board of D.D.for 10 years, and is currently enrolled in Cleveland State University’s graduate program in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Anita is proud and happy to have worked with Still Point Theatre Collective in various capacities since 1993.
Rima Parikh is a writer and comedian. After graduating with a degree in English from Washington University in St. Louis, she moved to Chicago to pursue comedy. She began working with Still Point in 2015 as an intern and has been involved with the organization ever since.
Laura Callahan-Hazard – Senior Facilitator
Laura Callahan-Hazard holds a degree in Directing from Barat College, and has a background in Chicago theater working as a designer, dramaturg, and director. She is the lead facilitator for the Ravenswood Players, and has also led other Imagination Workshop programs with Still Point, including partnerships with SEARCH Inc., L’Arche Chicago, and Orchard Village.
Mars A. Caulton – Program Facilitator
Mars A. Caulton is an Early Childhood Teacher and a Teaching Artist, specializing in Performance Art, Music, Poetry, and Literacy. She holds a B.A. in Child Studies and an Illinois Professional Educator’s License, currently teaching preschool on Chicago’s West Side. An animal lover and diligent citizen of the natural world, she lives with her 12 year old son and 3 rescued cats.
James Cornolo – Program Facilitator
James has been teaching music for over 15 years to a wide range of people including very young children, senior citizens, and persons with disabilities. He has studied jazz at the American Conservatory of Music and currently holds a B. A. in Classical Guitar Performance and Pedagogy from Northwestern Illinois University. James has a strong professional background in World Music including Latin and Caribbean styles in addition to rock, jazz, and classical. James uses his rich experience to find the best approach for each individual student’s growth and enjoyment.
Stephanie Browning – Program Facilitator
Stephanie is an internationally known jazz vocalist who first made a name for herself as the Artist-in-residence of the world renowned Gold Star Sardine Bar, where she received critical praise for her vocal interpretive savvy of jazz standards. Stephanie has had the good fortune to play with incredible musicians in amazing venues around the world and has seen the joy that music can bring. That sharing of joy prompted Stephanie to volunteer to perform a sing-a-long at Garden Center Services. That one sing-a-long then turned into years of her teaching music weekly to persons with a wide range of disabilities.
Lindsay Porter – Program Facilitator
Lindsay Porter has been acting, directing, teaching and writing plays in Chicago for over 20 years. At Still She has been a facilitator for the Persephone Project at Lake County Jail since 2008. She co-directed Feeling Beautiful All Over, performed by Sisters Rising. Lindsay has directed and performed at dozens of Chicago theatres and was a founding member of Running With Scissors where she appeared in The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon and wrote and directed her adaptation of Lysistrata. Lindsay recently forayed into Chicago’s Live Lit and storytelling scene, where she’s performed her own writing with Story Sessions, True Story, Tellin’ Tales and Loose Chicks. Lindsay’s plays and monologues have been performed at Trap Door, Chicago Dramatists, Organic, Running with Scissors, and Collaboraction in Chicago and at Live Girls in Seattle and Riverside Theatre in Iowa. She also directed and performed in The Conscience Monologues, a project of the Eighth Day Center for Justice, with Still Point Founder Lisa Wagner. Lindsay lives in Chicago with her husband and 8 year old son, and is currently in negations about whether to add a lizard or puppy to the family.
Breon Arzell – Actor
Since moving to Chicago a year ago, Detroit native, Breon Arzell, has truly fallen for the theater scene here. After touring and performing in Europe for the past 5 and half years, he is happy to be re-starting his American career in Chicago. He has worked with Skokie Theatre, Jerry Miller Prod., eta Creative Arts Foundation, Muse of Fire, New Lincoln Theatre, The Plagirists, Fury Theatre, Theater Unspeakable, and The Hypocrites. His talent and ambitions have led to his performing throughout the U.S., Canada, Singapore, Malaysia, London, Wales, Italy, and Germany. “Truly humbled and sincerely grateful.” Breon has performed in SPTC’s Living Water. BreonArzell.wix.com/site
Andy Clifton – Actor
Andy is pleased to have played the part of Fr. Doug Doussan in Living Water. Since retirement, he has been appearing in local Chicago area theaters. Some of his favorite productions are Making God Laugh, Alone Together, Little Women, Twelve Angry Men, and The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey. Additional credits include the Broadway style musical South Pass, premiered in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, as well as several locally produced films. Andy is most grateful to his wife, Susan, for her encouragement in his acting pursuits.
Gail Gallagher – Actor
Gail Gallagher graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a degree in theatre performance and theatre management in May of 2010. She has been involved in projects that combine theatre and social justice work since her freshman year of college. She performed the one woman show My Name is Rachel Corrie as her senior project. She enjoys working the the Imagination Workshop and acting in the Still Point production, Strong Women. She is also a composer and improv piano player and has performed with improv groups around the city.
Steve Grossman – Director, Technical Theatre SupportSteve has an M.A. in Theater and Film, and has directed scores of amateur and professional productions. In 1966, he was founding director of the Creede Repertory Theatre in Creede, Colorado. He has been a Peace Corps volunteer and staffer, a screenwriter and journalist, and has taught at universities in Kansas and Missouri.
Jyreika Guest – Actor
Jyreika holds a Master’s Degree in Public History at Northern Kentucky University and a Bachelors of Fine Arts, concentration in Musical Theatre. She is an independent Performance Poet, who speaks with community groups, youth groups, churches, and many theatrical audiences. She leads and facilitates poetry workshops; and also develops pieces, activities, and projects for themed events and requests.
Nicole Michelle Haskins – ActorFostering a love for storefront theatre and congested public transit, Nicole Michelle Haskins packed up her cat and song book and carried her near 6ft frame to the steps of Chicago’s Theatre community. With a set of pipes built in the Motor City and a sense of Humor fraying at the edges with unnecessary candor, she is proud to call herself a Chicago Actor. Nicole Michelle is beyond honored to play alongside the fearless Artists in ‘Living Water’. Working with Still Point Theatre Collective has been life changing, to say the least. In between Acting, reading, and cruising the aisles of your local Sephora you can catch more of Nicole Michelle at
Virginia Smith – DirectorVirginia is the Head of Directing at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and until recently was the Artistic Director of Nebraska Repertory Theatre. She received the Mayor’s Choice Award from Lincoln’s Mayor Chris Beutler and the Lincoln Arts Council in 2015. She has been working with Lisa Wagner-Carollo and Still Point since the very beginning of the company, and directed Haunted by God, Deep Listening, and Living Water.
Randy Steinmeyer – ActorRandy won a Joseph Jefferson Award for his portrayal of Denny Lombardo in the World Premiere of A Steady Rain. He’s appeared on TV in The Playboy Club, Chicago PD, The Beast, Early Edition, Chicago Code, The Turks, and The Untouchables. He’s appeared on the big screen in Public Enemies, The Babe, and Transformers 3.
Michael Turrentine – ActorMichael graduated with a BFA in Acting from the University of Oklahoma. He recently relocated from Oklahoma to the city of Chicago and is loving every bit of “the Windy City”. He is very excited to be playing multiple roles in Living Water. This is his first project with Still Point.
Holly Windingstad – Set and Costume Designer Holly is a freelance designer whose work has been seen in Chicago, IL; Milwaukee, WI; Minneapolis, MN; Phoenix, AZ; Rockford, IL; New York, NY; and Lincoln, NE. Holly has been collaborating with Still Point since 20003, designing shows and assisting with prison programming. Holly received an MFA in set and costume design from Northwestern University.
Volunteers and Interns
Clearie McCarthy – Intern
Clearie McCarthy received a BFA in acting from Wayne State University. Before graduating, Clearie worked as a student-facilitator at Detroit Public Theatre’s Shakespeare in Prison program, founded by Frannie Shepard-Bates. Additionally, she facilitated a Forum Theatre event seeking to creatively explore bystander intervention as an approach to sexual violence prevention on college campuses. Clearie’s work in Chicago is currently focused on Improvisation, applied theatre, and Theatre of the Oppressed. She is working with Still Point’s Persephone Project facilitating improvisation workshops with incarcerated woman at the Cook County Correctional Facility. Clearie has recently graduated from Annoyance Theatre’s Improvisation program and recently studied at the Center for Theatre of the Oppressed in Rio De Janeiro.
Ja’na Baylor – Intern
Ja’na is currently a first-year student at DePauw University, seeking to create her own major of Drama Art Therapy. She attended The Chicago Academy for the Arts High School, where she studied acting, stagecraft, improv, directing and how to become a playwright. She is very excited to be apart of the Still Point Theatre Collective Team, and hopes that she will be a great addition to the creative atmosphere!.
Meggie Gates – Volunteer
Meggie Gates is a comedian and writer living in Chicago, Illinois. She volunteers with Still Point Theater’s innmate outreach program down at the Metropolitan Correctional Center and enjoys bringing happiness everywhere she goes.