Faculty & Staff

David-Matthew Barnes

David-Matthew Barnes is the Lead Faculty and Program Director of the Red Rocks Community College Theatre Arts and Dance Department. He has been an arts educator for over a decade. 

 

David-Matthew is the author of several novels and collections of stage plays, poetry, short stories, and monologues. Two of his young adult novels have been recognized by the American Library Association for their diversity.

 

David-Matthew has written over 40 stage plays that have been performed in three languages in eight countries. His literary work has been featured in over one hundred publications including The Best Stage Scenes, The Best Men's Stage Monologues, The Best Women's Stage Monologues, The Comstock Review, and The Southeast Review.

 

David-Matthew's stage plays have been official selections for the Chicago Director's Festival, the DC Queer Theatre Festival, FronteraFest, the Johannesburg One-Act Drama Festival, the Mid-America Dramatists Lab, the NYC 15-Minute Play Festival, the Rough Writers New Play Festival, and the Western Australia Drama Festival. His plays have been performed on stages across the country including the American Globe Theatre, the Boston Center for the Arts, the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, Hyde Park Theatre, and the Producer's Club in New York City.

 

David-Matthew wrote and directed the feature film Frozen Stars (starring Lana Parrilla of ABC's Once Upon a Time), which received worldwide distribution. He is also the writer and director of the dramatic short film Threnody and the creator of the television series Bloom and Drama Queens.

 

David-Matthew has directed and produced more than 40 theatrical productions including Dancing On Checkersʹ Grave, Danny and the Deep Blue Sea, Les Belles Soeurs, Steel Magnolias, Laundry and Bourbon, The Vagina Monologues, Teach Me How To Cry, Medea, The Importance of Being Earnest, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, and more.

 

As an actor, he has performed in over 25 theatrical productions including roles in Once a Catholic at the Julia Morgan Theatre in Berkeley, The Furthest Room at the Stella Adler Theatre in Los Angeles, Big Love at The Merriam Theatre in Philadelphia, in the west coast premiere of Sam Schwartz’s Vito on the Beach, and as Mark in The Shadow Box.

 

David-Matthew was selected by Kent State University as the national winner of the Hart Crane Memorial Poetry Award. In addition, he has received the Carrie McCray Literary Award, the Slam Boston Award for Best Play, and earned double awards for poetry and playwriting in the World AIDS Day Writing Contest. He has received national awards in the Split This Rock Poetry Contest and the New Works for Young Women Playwriting Competition. He is the recipient of two Elly Awards from the Sacramento Area Regional Theatre Alliance. His screenplays and teleplays have been recognized with awards from the Shore Scripts Screenwriting Competition in London and the Film Makers TV Writing Competition in Los Angeles.

 

David-Matthew graduated magna cum laude from Oglethorpe University in Atlanta with a degree in Communications and English. He earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing at Queens University of Charlotte in North Carolina. He also attended American River College in Sacramento, the Theatre School of DePaul University in Chicago, and Columbia College Chicago. David-Matthew was nationally selected to serve as the Emerging Writer in Residence at Penn State where he taught in their English program. He studied playwriting in New York in workshop with Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize winner Marsha Norman (‘night, Mother, The Color Purple, The Secret Garden).

 

David-Matthew is a member of the Dramatists Guild of America, International Thriller Writers, and the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators.

Regina Ayala

REGINA AYALA
Assistant Costume Shop Coordinator and Department Marketing Assistant

 

Regina is a recent graduate of the RRCC Theatre and Dance Program, where she earned her Associates in Technical Theatre with an emphasis in Costuming. She is also a graduate from the Professional Sewing and Fashion Design Program at Emily Griffith Technical College. Her passion for costuming stems from her love of cosplay. She has been a part of the cosplay community for the past several years and has won craftsmanship awards for her work. In 2014, one of her original designs was chosen for the first annual Her Universe Geek Couture Fashion Show at San Diego Comic Con.

MICHAEL BLEVINS

MICHAEL BLEVINS
Technical Staff

 

Michael has been working in the Theatre Arts and Dance Department since 2011 building sets, props, and repairing anything that breaks in the theatre. He has also been taking classes in the department and plans to graduate with an associate’s degree. Michael has found the people in this department a blessing and a blast to work with.  Working in the department and taking classes has also made him a better instructor. Michael has been teaching at RRCC since 2005 in the Fire Science Department, the Psychology Department, the Sociology Department, and for College Gateway. He looks forward to completing his associate’s degree in theatre and building many more sets in the future.

SEAN DALE

SEAN DALE
Instructor and Director

 

Sean has been performing in theatre since elementary school, when he first performed at the Aurora Fox. He has performed in and directed numerous stage productions, most recently a week long camporee with over 50,000 in attendance. Sean's specialties are character development and coaching. He also has connections to a number of improv groups in the Denver area.

Kelly Jo Eldredge

KELLY JO ELDREDGE
Theatre Lab Coordinator, Instructor, and Director

 

Kelly Jo Eldredge is the Theatre Lab Coordinator for the Theatre Arts & Dance department, and she also enjoys teaching musical theatre, voice, and diction courses here at RRCC. She received her master’s from New England Conservatory in Boston and began her professional career in opera. Kelly Jo soon moved to New York to pursue a career in musical theatre and has performed lead roles on national Broadway tours and in regional theatre throughout the U.S. and Canada. After many years on the road, she decided to retire her suitcase and live closer to family in beautiful Colorado. In addition to teaching college courses, Kelly Jo also performs, directs, and teaches private voice. She is a member of NATS (National Association of Teachers of Singing), ATHE (Association for Theatre in Higher Education, VASTA (Voice and Speech Trainers Association), Dramatists Guild, and a former board member of the Colorado Theatre Guild.

Gail Gober

GAIL GOBER
Technical Director, Master Carpenter, Lighting Designer, Technical Theatre Instructor

 

Gail Gober has been a lighting designer in the Denver area for over 29 years. Many of those years were spent as the lighting designer at Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities. During that time, Gail was nominated for ten Outstanding Lighting Design awards and won five. Along with teaching and designing at Red Rocks Community College, Gail works with Rocky Mountain Theatre for Kids. She has also taught at the Denver School for the Arts.

KRISTINA JOHNSON

KRISTINA JOHNSON
Resident Costume Designer and Instructor

 

Kris is a recent graduate of Red Rocks Community College Theatre Arts and Dance, where she earned an Associates of Applied Sciences with a focus in Costuming and Technical Theatre. She is also an alumnus of the Professional Sewing and Fashion Design Program at Emily Griffith Technical College. She has been a member of the Colorado Cosplay and Belly Dance communities for several years, where she has used her learned expertise to bring her favorite characters to life. She has also helped others in the creation of historical and custom characters for re-enactments and costuming groups, three of which have been accepted into the Colorado chapter of the Dark Empire.

JEREMY KURN

JEREMY KURN
Pianist

 

A lifelong student of music, composition, improvisation, jazz, classical music and musical theater, Jeremy Kurn has emerged as a professional composer, arranger, music director and conductor. His business, Keynote Musical (keynotemusical.com), continues to grow, providing numerous audio and sheet music services to artists and students nationally and worldwide. Brought up in a musical world of strict convention and tradition, Jeremy spent an equal amount of time growing beyond its confines, taking upon himself an unconventional journey to find authentic sources of musical inspiration and develop a voice sourced by years of travel, spiritual practices, experimental music, and other non-musical passions, such as mountain climbing, martial arts, and nutrition. He has a deep passion to share with anyone who is seeking a life defined on their own terms.

Steve Stevens

STEVE STEVENS
Sound Designer and Instructor

 

Steve Stevens has worked in Musical Direction and Sound Sculpture for theatres in Colorado and New York. Some of his notable works include Arvada’s Les Misérables, The Crucible, Miss Saigon, Sunset Boulevard, and Ragtime; Albany Capital Repertory’s To Kill A Mockingbird and The Taming Of The Shrew; and CSF's Twelfth Night and A Midsummer Night's Dream. His work has garnered numerous award nominations. His musical, Little Women, The Musical, was awarded Best New Play in 1998, and he was awarded the 2008-2009 and 2009-2010 Henry Award for Outstanding Sound Design.

Connie Sander, Instructor

CONNIE SANDER
Instructor: Acting, Audition Techniques, Introduction to Theatre, Directing

 

Connie has spent the last twenty-five years teaching, directing, designing, and acting. Prior to teaching, she worked in the Denver area as an actor and director, founding Cattlecall Productions in 1993. An MFA graduate from Humboldt State University, she received her master’s in directing in 1999 and has been sharing her talent at RRCC since 2001 as a part-time faculty member. Also an instructor at MSU Denver, Connie is passionate about contributing to the educational experience of the student. She relates theater techniques to everyday life, using the skills of the theater to improve all communication skills.  She engages the class with an active and positive approach, supporting an ensemble building atmosphere where creativity thrives. Some of her favorite directing projects include: The Importance of Being Earnest, Scars (original work), The Shadow Box, Steel Magnolias, The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me.