Jim Bumgardner (Producer/Director) – has been on the faculty at BCC since 2002. He teaches both theatre courses as well as produces all of the Bergenstages productions. Some of his favorite shows that he has directed were Into the Woods, Oh, Coward, Guys and Dolls, South Pacific, Company, The Threepenny Opera, The 1940’s Radio Hour, The Heiress, Cabaret, Kiss Me, Kate, Godspell, A Funny Thing Happened…Forum, Kindertransport, Brigadoon, Damn Yankees, Mousetrap, The Music Man, Fiddler on the Roof, Deathtrap, Steel Magnolias and Moonlight and Magnolias. Jim received his MFA from Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, NY and his BA from St. Andrews University in Laurinburg, NC.
Jared Saltzman (Lighting Desinger/Director) – Jared is a professor of performing arts, cinema studies and communications. A founding member of the theatre program, Jared, with the help of many students, designed, renovated, and built the Ender Hall Laboratory Theatre and was also actively involved in the design of the Ciccone Theatre. He has designed the lighting and scenery for more than 125 shows here at Bergen and has also served in the capacity of producer, director, and technical director. In addition to his academic work, Jared is a professional stage technician with memberships in numerous trade organizations and unions (IATSE). He is a Certified Entertainment Electrician and is nationally recognized as a Qualified Trainer in the entertainment industry.
Thomas O’Neill, EdD (Technical Coordinator/Director/Set Designer) – Thomas O’Neill, EdD (Director) –Directing credits include Much Ado About Nothing, Cyrano, What I Did Last Summer, The Rivals, Angels In America, A Man For All Seasons, Medea, Crimes of the Heart, The Elephant Man, Summer and Smoke, and Tartuffe. He has designed sets for Cabaret, As You Like It, The Firebugs, Bus Stop, The Importance of Being Earnest, All My Sons and The Cherry Orchard and sound for South Pacific, OtherPeople’s Money, and Company. He is in his 19th year on the theatre staff. Tom is a graduate of the NYU School of the Arts and recently received his doctorate in education at the National American University. His dissertation concentrated on the influence of theatre arts studies on community college students and the development of their non-cognitive behaviors such as self-esteem, persistence, critical and creative thinking and more. He is a firm believer that education is the key to a successful life in whatever the endeavor.
Michael LaPointe (Set Designer/Scenic Artist) – Michael G. LaPointe (Scenic Artist) – Upon receiving his M.Ed in Drama from the University of North Carolina Greensboro in 1998, Michael accepted a position on the theatre technical staff here at BCC where he works as Senior Theatre Technician, Scene Shop Supervisor, Set Designer, Scenic Artist, has two Directing credits, and is an Instructor of Stagecraft & Lighting and Stage Management classes.
Dr. Leigh Jonaitis (Director) is a professor, director, actor, and singer who earned a BFA (Musical Theatre) and a BA (English) from the University of Michigan, and an MA and EdD from Columbia University Teachers College. She has taught at Bergen Community College since 2000; prior to that, she taught at Bronx Community College. She recently directed Eurydice by Sarah Ruhl and The Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler. Acting roles include Kate in Dancing at Lughnasa, Dr. Charlotte in Falsettoland, Arlene in Baby, the Baker’s Wife in Into the Woods, Chris Gorman in Rumors, and Sarah in Company. In 2018, she performed the role of The Witch in Into the Woods for Bergenstages, the theatre arts program here at BCC. She has performed with guitarist Larry Newcomb as the duo Jonaitis & Newcomb, with the jazz group The Lance Hayward Singers in New York City, and recorded vocals on Newcomb’s album Living Tribute with jazz guitar legend Bucky Pizzarelli. She has published articles in Teaching English in the Two-Year College, the Journal of Basic Writing, and Research and Teaching in Developmental Education. After serving in multiple leadership roles for the Two-Year College English Association (TYCA)-Northeast, she was elected to the position of National Secretary for TYCA. Leigh is also the co-advisor to the BCC Theatre Club.
Jessica Abrams (Musical Director) – is an award winning composer, director, and musician. Her work has also been seen at Ramapo College, as the music director and music arranger for Viet Rock. She us a KCACTF (Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival) award winner for Musical Adaptation of Viet Rock. In addition, she was the Senior play director at Ridgefield Memorial High School, where she is also the Junior High concert and jazz band director, percussion ensemble, and drum line director. She has conducted and performed in such venues as Alice Tully and Avery Fisher Halls at Lincoln Center, Madison Square Garden, The Izod Center, Giants Stadium, The Prudential Center, Disney World, Universal Studios, NJPAC, Bergen PAC, as well as countless convention centers and concert halls across the United States. She has also performed in Vienna, Prague, the Philippines, and Guam. Directing credits include credits include, Fiddler On The Roof, Big Fish, The Addams Family, The Music Man, Guys and Dolls, Once Upon A Mattress, Damn Yankees, Bye Bye Birdie. Music Directing Credits include, Oh Coward! South Pacfic, Company , The Three Penny Opera, 1940s Radio Hour, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Avenue Q, Viet Rock.
Amanda Kopel Abrams (Choreographer) –Amanda has been dancing for almost thirty years. She is the award winning choreographer and studio director of Spotlight Performing Arts Academy in Ridgefield Park, NJ. She is also an adjunct professor of dance at Bergen Community College.
Dean Mattson (Sound Designer) – Dean has been an Audio Engineer and Sound Designer for 32 years. Recent credits at Bergen Community College includes Compleat Female Stage Beauty, Angels in America, The Elephant Man, Godspell, Medea, The Mousetrap, The Heiress, The Clouds, Hamlet and Noises Off. Currently, Dean is the front of house audio engineer and production manager for the band YES as well as the chief audio engineer at Banana Sound Productions in Fair Lawn.
Marie Natali (Costume Designer) – is an Adjunct Professor in Costume Design here at BCC- “I am always so impressed by our talented students and the great work they accomplish under the guidance of such extraordinary directors and staff. It is a joy to be associated with such a professional and dedicated design team.” Audiences saw Marie’s designs in our recent productions of Much Ado About Nothing, Picnic, Noises Off, Cyrano, Into the Woods, Barefoot in the Park, Guys and Dolls, A Flea In Her Ear, Oh, Coward!, South Pacific, The Rivals, Company, Brighton Beach Memoirs, The Threepenny Opera, Blithe Spirit, Pygmalion, The 1940’s Radio Hour, The Heiress, A Man for All Seasons, As You Like It, Cabaret, The House of Bernarda Alba, Kiss Me, Kate, Medea, Tartuffe, The Elephant Man, The Cherry Orchard, A Raisin in the Sun, A Funny Thing…Forum, other plays she has designed for include Annie, She Loves Me, Chicago, Evita, My Fair Lady, to name but a few.
Adam Farnan (Set Designer) –Adam is a wonderful new addition to the Bergenstages design staff. Adam has been working backstage for Bergenstages and the Dept. of Community and Cultural Affairs for several years working on numerous productions. Adam loves to design but his desire is to continue working in set construction.
Dimitri Mokarakorn (Set Designer/Projections Designer) – Dimitri is a jack of all trades who’s been in Bergen Community College’s deck for several years.
Miru Kim (Lighting Designer) –is a freelance theatre lighting designer/tech. She has participated in many Bergen shows as a stagecrew/lighting designer. Past BCC design credits include : August:Osage County, Hamlet, The Chairs, Cyrano and Much Ado About Nothing.
Steven Schwartz (Sound Designer) –has been working in sound for over 40 years and is happy to be a part of the Bergenstages’ production team. Steve’s craft has given him the opportunity to work for Banana Sound, John Harms Center, and Mayo PAC among many others and has allowed to him to mix sound for such greats as David Letterman, The Mamas and the Papas, Tommy James, and Lilo Thomas.
Graham Frye (Lighting Designer) –Graham has been the lighting designer for Accidental Death of an Anarchist, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Veronica’s Room, Other People’s Money, What I did Last Summer, Noises Off and Picnic.
Eireann Ingersoll (Set Designer) – Eireann has been part of numerous productions on and off the stage. Some of her past roles include: Hermia in The Illustrious Theatre Company’s production of Shakespeare’s, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Catherine in The Heiress, Marta in Company, and many more. Eireann has enjoyed many roles off stage as well, including: master electrician, stage manager, set designer, lighting designer, scenic artist, fight advisor, and choreographer. She is currently an on-call technical staff member for the Bergen Community College theatres and has her BA in Theatre Studies from MSU, an AA in Theatre from BCC. Eireann also works professionally as a director/acrobat/ performer/musician in the award winning cast of the New York Renaissance Faire in Tuxedo and co-founded the St. Bosco’s Academy for Flippin’ Idjits with her acro partner and best friend teaching all ages the tools and joys of physical performance.
Dan Conrad (Props Designer) –has designed props for over twenty shows and many at BCC. He worked two summers as the properties designer at Cortland Repertory Theatre in Cortland, New York. His experience in the stage extends to acting and directing. As an actor he has performed in over forty plays in New York and New Jersey. His directing credits include Egad, What a Cad at BCC and Where There’s No Will at midtown’s Medicine Show Theatre. Dan Conrad’s recent experience is in film where he wrote and stared in many short films, including Marty and Doug’s New Religion and Greg’s Guardian Angel. He is also a freelance animator, author and cartoonist.
Codi Chester (Box Office Manager ) – graduated from Ramapo College of NJ with a BA in Theater with a concentration in Stage Management. Codi has been working in the Box office here at Bergen Community College for over 5 years. She has previously has stage managed 1776 with Phoenix Productions, Other People’s Money at Bergen Community College.