Dana Edell Founder/Executive Director
Dana is the co-founder and executive director of viBe Theater Experience. She has co-directed almost all the 40+ productions, written and performed by viBeGirls. Dana also co-founded and directed Inside/Out Performing Arts, a playmaking company with girls affected by the juvenile justice system in San Francisco and ran a technical theater job training program for low-income youth at Brava! for Women in the Arts. As a theater director, Dana has produced, written and directed new plays, rock operas and classical works at small theaters across the country. She was a theater artist-in-residence in public schools in the Bronx and Harlem, and teaches as an adjunct in the Theatre Department at Marymount Manhattan College and with the Bard College Prison Initiative at Bayview Women's Prison. She has spoken at conferences worldwide and published multiple articles about the need for creative arts opportunities for girls. Dana holds a BA with honors in Classics/ Ancient Greek from Brown University, an MFA in Theater Directing from Columbia and is currently working on her PhD in the Performing Arts Department of the Steinhardt School for Education, Culture and Human Development at New York University.
chandra thomas Founder/Director of Programming
chandra thomas is the co-founder and director of programming of viBe Theater Experience. She is consistently amazed by the 175+ â€śviBe Girlsâ€ť who have shared their creative voices through their original plays, solo shows, music and performances. As a professional actor/ writer/ producer, chandra has worked and studied for over 15 years across the United States and internationally. Her long-standing artistic interest is in the development and creation of fresh, new works. To this end, chandra has originated roles in plays as well as performing in film, television and voiceover. She has also written and produced new plays and theatrical experiences. As an educator, chandra teaches collaborative theatre development, business for performing artists and performance as empowerment. She currently teaches at Columbia Universityâ€™s School of the Arts. Recently, she completed a performance as empowerment workshop series at the Ferris School for Boys, an all-male juvenile detention center in Wilmington, DE. She has also taught at Creative Arts Team at the City University of New York, New York Film Academy, University of Minnesota, Webster University, among others. chandra graduated, with honors, with a BA in Theatre Arts and BA in Sociology from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN and holds an MFA in Acting from Columbia University.
Sarah Nikolic Development Associate
Before coming to viBe, Sarah worked with refugees at Jewish Family Services in Pittsburgh, PA; Stamford, CT and Rockland County, NY. She holds a Masterâ€™s Degree in Public and International Affairs from the University of Pittsburgh and graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Delaware. She is raising three children in New York City and has spent much of the last decade involved in local public education.
Katie Eastburn viBeSongMakers Program Director
Ellen Hagan viBeSolos Program Director
Ellen is a writer, performer, and educator. Based in New York, her work can be found in the pages of Failbetter, La Petite Zine, nervygirl, Monologues for Women by Women Volumes I & II, Check the Rhyme: An Anthology of Female Poets & Emcees, Submerged: Tales from the Basin, America! What's My Name?, PLUCK, Underwired Magazine and upcoming in Just Like a Girl, and Woman, Period. She has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and an excerpt from her novel BLUSH, was chosen as a winner for the 2007 Next Great Writers Competition at the Carnegie Center in Lexington, Kentucky.
Ellen has taken the stage with performances in the New York International Fringe Festival, The ROAR Theatre Festival, The American Living Room Festival and the Rebel Verses Young Performers Festival. She is regular at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in New York and has performed nationally at Governor's Mansion in Kentucky, La Pena Cultural Center in Berkeley, California, The Gramercy Arts Club, Hope Street Gallery, Bar 13, and the Carnegie Center among others. Recently, Ellen was named a Vagina Warrior by Adelphi University for her work with girlstory.
In March 2008, Ellen performed her award winning one- woman show, America WHAT at the LA Women's Theater Festival in Los Angeles and returned with That Girl in 2009.
She is chair of the creative writing department at the Kentucky Governor's School for the Arts and serves as the BronxWrites Poetry Coordinator of New York's DreamYard Project and is a teaching artist at Community~Word Project. She is also a professor of creative writing at Adelphi University.
rebecca mushtare Web Designer/Web Mistress
Rebecca is a digital media artist and a Communication Arts faculty member at Marymount Manhattan College. She earned her MFA in Computer Art from and her CAS in Women's Studies at Syracuse University. Rebecca's work addresses consumerism, environmentalism, gender and technology, and cyborgs. In addition to "making" and teaching, Rebecca enjoys working with community organizations on their creative projects. Visit her virtual homesteads: http://www.cyberthread.net and http://www.threadedneedle.net
Mae-Mae Taylor Accountant/Bookkeeper