The Spotlight Staff
Founder / Producer
Harley Yanoff (Founder/Producer/Acting Coach) is currently a New York based Actor. He is a graduate of Brandeis University (cum laude) with a B.A. in Theater Arts Performance (High Honors). Film Credits: He can be seen alongside Oscar Winner Casey Affleck as Smitty in Disney's "The Finest Hours". His Off Broadway theater credits include the world premiere of "Final Days", "Perfectly Complicated", and "The Glass Menagerie" He made his professional theater debut in A Little Night Music with the Lyric Stage Company of Boston. At Brandeis University he was seen as Jack in Into The Woods, Bob in Balm In Gilead, Chance in The Water Children, and Edges, a new song cycle. Regional theater credits include Jeff in Kimberly Akimbo, Troy Bolton in High School Musical, Hugo Peabody in Bye Bye Birdie, The Artful Dodger in Oliver, and Harvey Cheyne, for which he received an EMACT award for Best Actor in a lead role in the New England premiere of Captains Courageous. His film work includes supporting roles in The Town (starring Ben Affleck, Jeremy Renner, and Jon Hamm), 21 (starring Kevin Spacey), My Best Friend's Girl (Starring Kate Hudson and Dane Cook), Don McKay (Starring Thomas Hayden Church, Elizabeth Shue, and Melissa Leo). His television credits include a role on the Fox TV hit show Fringe as well as featured work on CBS's The Good Wife, WB's Gossip Girl. His commercial work includes Subway, McDonald's, American Express, and Titleist. He is a proud member of The Actors Equity Association (AEA), and SAG-AFTRA, The Screen Actors Guild and The American Federation of Television and Radio Artist.
In addition to Spotlight, he's the founder of Broadway From Home, a global virtual theater workshop. For nearly a decade he worked at the Turtle Lane Playhouse Summer Children's Theater Workshop where he also taught an acting and auditioning class. He has also worked with Boston Casting where he has assisted with many projects. He is thrilled to begin the 15th summer of Spotlight!
Artistic Director / Director
Julia Chase is a third-year student at Northeastern University, majoring in Theatre and Communications with a minor in Performing Arts Administration. Originally from Needham, MA, she has been involved in the Greater Boston theatre community since the age of nine. Previous directing experience includes Little Shop of Horrors (Needham High School), The Addams Family (Saint Joseph’s Summer Theatre), Matilda JR (Spotlight), Aladdin JR (Spotlight), Mary Poppins JR (Spotlight), Seussical JR (Spotlight), among many others. As an actress, Julia's favorite roles include Anfisa in The Three Sisters (Northeastern University) and Netti in Curious George and the Golden Meatball (Boston Children’s Theatre). Aside from her theatrical endeavors, Julia is an aspiring singer/songwriter, with original music on all streaming platforms. She is absolutely thrilled to be involved with Spotlight again this summer!
Ted Whalen (Music Direction) Ted is currently the Director of Upper School Choruses at Milton Academy. He is a graduate of the University of Rhode Island and the New England Conservatory of Music. Recent productions for which Ted had served as Music Director and Conductor are Spamalot, Avenue Q, Pippen, Dido and Aeneas, Hansel und Gretel, Iolanthe, and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat with Milton Academy, Dana Hall School, the Rhode Island Gilbert and Sullivan Society, the Boston Aria Guild and the Wellesley Choral Society where he is Music Director.
As a vocal performer, Ted has appeared as soloist with such groups as the Boston Lyric Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, Lake George Opera, Boston Academy of Music, Alea III, Monadnock Music, Boston Baroque, Chorus proMusica, the Connecticut Pops Orchestra, and the Rhode Island Gilbert & Sullivan Society.
In addition to his work as conductor and performer, Ted is a composer whose works were most recently featured in concert by the Wellesley Choral Society.
Lauren just finished her first year at New York University where she is studying Musical Theatre and Vocal Performance. She is from Needham, MA and has spent her entire life involved in theatre and dance. Most recently, she played Beth Spencer in Merrily We Roll Along at Weston Drama Workshop. Some of her choreography credits include Dear Edwina (Needham High School), Aladdin Jr. (Needham Community Theatre), Mamma Mia (Needham High School), and Monopoly The Musical (Dover Freelance Players). She was also a competitive dancer in high school and won multiple first place and stand-out awards for her tap solos. She is so excited to join the Spotlight Team and can’t wait to start dancing!
Choreographer / Manager
Sarina Wasserman was raised in Santa Barbara, California and is currently based in New York City. She graduated from Northeastern University in 2021 with a B.A. in Human Services and a concentration in Nonprofits, Philanthropy, & Social Change. She has been involved in musical theater since the age of five and has studied classical voice, piano, and dance for over 12 years! Some of her favorite past roles include Helen Sinclair in Bullets Over Broadway, Sheila Franklin in Hair, Berthe in Pippin, and most recently Rizzo in Grease. Sarina is so excited to be back at Spotlight and is looking forward to another amazing summer at camp!
Jordan Young is a student at Case Western Reserve University studying engineering. In his free time, Jordan enjoys singing in Glee Club, dancing, playing board games and doing odd math problems. He is a proud alum of Spotlight Theater Camp after five years of being a camper, acting in such shows as Beauty and the Beast, Seussical, Into the Woods, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and Once on this Island. Jordan can't wait for another great summer at Spotlight!
Counselor / Art Teacher
Cat Glidden is thrilled to be a counselor at Spotlight again this summer! She is a Spotlight alum, having played leading roles in Peter Pan, The Little Mermaid, and Willy Wonka. Outside of Spotlight, she has played Puck in A Midsummer NIght's Dream, and other roles in High School. She was excited to play a Lost Boy in Norwood Theater's production of Peter Pan. Now she attends college in Vermont, and it is her dream to be an art teacher. Cat is looking forward to a great summer working with you at Spotlight!
Jocelyn Sylva is a 16 year old spotlight alumni. She’s loved performing since a young age and is grateful for the community Spotlight provides for young aspiring actors. Her favorite past roles include Mr Wormwood in Matilda, the Baker in Into the Woods, and The Cat In the Hat in Seussical. She is absolutely stoked to spend another summer working with the staff, and helping bring the magic of Spotlight to life and give everyone the same wonderful experience she was given.
Josie George is a 16 year old high schooler from Needham. She has grown up on stage and been immersed with the arts forever. She has had the pleasure of being a camper at spotlight, and is super excited to help make the experience a blast for the new generation of campers. Her past favorite roles in theater include Baker’s Wife (Into the Woods), Mayzie La bird (Seussical), Alice (Alice in Wonderland), and Alana (The Little Mermaid). She’s so excited for the summer!
Jonah (Technical Director) is a Boston born, New York City based Moving Light Programmer working on Broadway, Off-Broadway, Regional Theater, TV, and Cruise Ships. Recent work includes, True West & King Lear on Broadway, Cambodian Rock Band, Octet & Miss You like Hell Off-Broadway, The Band’s Visit 1st National Tour, What the Constitution Means to Me at The Kennedy Center, The Sound of Music at Asolo Rep, Thoughts of a Colored Man at Syracuse Stage & Baltimore Centerstage. Some of Jonah’s favorite projects include an interactive dance show for the first ship of the new Virgin Voyages cruise line, Summer Shakespeare in the Park in New York City and the 25 Years of Disney On Broadway Anniversary Concert.
Paul is a filmmaker and educator from Boston, Massachusetts. He graduated cum laude from SUNY Purchase Film Conservatory with a BFA in Filmmaking in 2015. Presently, he is awaiting his Master’s in Film & Television Studies at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece.
Paul's films have been screened at festivals and events in Hollywood, Northern California, Florida, New Mexico, Michigan, France, Greece and at the Jacob Burns Film Centre in New York. In 2013 his film Magi won Best Short Film at the Santa Cruz Film Festival. Recently his film Skye won the award for Best Direction of Short Film and for Best Female Actor at the Symi International Film Festival in Greece. His music video, When November Came was awarded winner at the Berlin Flash Film Festival in Germany (July 2018 contest) and screened at the Movement for Peace event at the 17th Annual Santa Cruz Film Festival in October 2019.
In 2012, Paul was awarded The Joan Potter & Miriam Arsham Award for Directing Actors from SUNY Purchase College and is a two-time recipient of the Harriet Irsay Scholarship from the American Institute of Polish Culture. His essay, Cinema: A Source of Polish Survival was published in their annual magazine.
Paul has lived and worked in Hollywood, Northern California, and Boston where he has taught history and theatre to high-school and elementary school students. Paul has been the Film Instructor at the SUNY Purchase Pre-College Film Institute for five years and is also the Acting for Film instructor at the International Theatre & Dance Project in Greece (ITDP).
Paul also studied acting in his time at SUNY Purchase, performed in live theatre and film upon and prior to his graduation, and is an actor's equity membership candidate. Paul has been a professional headshot photographer for ten years.
Alex Salsberg (Animator) is a professional animator and illustrator with a passion for teaching. He founded The Artist’s Lab at Spotlight after spending over ten years teaching art and filmmaking in a variety of settings. His goal is to introduce students to modern, fun ways to create, and to give them plenty of time and freedom to do it. After years of offering short workshops at Spotlight, he's very excited to bring a full summer program to the amazing Spotlight campers.
When not teaching kids, Alex is busy producing and directing animated videos for web and TV, including work for Nickelodeon, MTV and DreamWorksTV. He is also an adjunct animation instructor at Mount Ida College and provides drawing instruction for autistic teens and adults at The Vinfen Family Support Center.