Faculty

Vanessa Hopkins: Artistic Director

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Vanessa has lived her life in the theater, as an actor, dancer, singer, director, and teacher. She has had the privilege of teaching acting, improvisation, dance and yoga, to adults, children and underserved youth communities in both Portland and California. Formerly, she was the creative director for Live at the Armory - a concert and event venue in Ashland Oregon. More recently, she is the founder of Life is Short Films, a digital content marketing company that serves non-profits, start ups, and innovative sustainable products. She also creates and multimedia performances and is now working on a new piece, coming this summer. Vanessa is passionate about creating Two Wolves Theater School in partnership with Ann Singer and Rogue Pack: It’s an honor to be a part of such impactful work. She believes the creative arts are the best way to give our youth the tools they need to thrive in a complex world. Vanessa@twowolvestheaterschool.com

Karen Polinsky: Mythical Playwriting 9-13

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Karen Polinsky is a collaborative teacher, writer and director. National Board certified, with a BA in Comparative Literature and a Master’s in curriculum design. She has taught English, including myth and literature from around the world for three decades. One of her first jobs was producing kid-created musicals in an after-school program in New York City; more recently she served as theater director in a high school on Bainbridge Island, Washington, directing adaptations of classic literature from Shakespeare to Oscar Wilde and an annual celebration of student-authored works. She studied directing at summer intensives at Yale in New Haven, and at the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco. Her own scripts include comedies, dramas and magic-realism, including her most recent, the contemporary Western “The Bad Hour” which was featured in Fertile Ground 2019. She is also the author of the novel “Dungeness” (Bedazzled Ink, 2016) a historic mythic coming-of-age journey with the S’Klallam tribe on the Olympic Peninsula.



Julia Bray: Magical Musicals 9-13

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Julia Bray is a creator, writer, performer, teacher and Portland native. She spent 10 years in New York City performing in “Off-Broadway” shows, writing plays and producing theater. In Portland, she teaches Kundalini Yoga & Meditation, adult dance classes & musical theater after school programs and creates solo-performance work. Her recent one-woman show "Matter Is Mother"  a multi-media theatrical experience where Julia plays 8 different characters and performs original music & dance, received a RACC grant for a full production run in 2019. She loves reading astrology charts, studying human behavior and consciousness through a theatrical lens, and connecting with animals (especially her terrier, Sparkles the Moon Dog). www.the-magic-is-you.com