Producing Artistic Director
Joel comes to Firehouse with an active career in the performing arts that crosses artistic, administrative, academic, and technical areas. He toured the world as Managing Director of The Wooster Group and worked with Mabou Mines and Theatre de la Jeune Lune. As an independent producer he has collaborated with artists including Jim Findlay, Cynthia Hopkins, Elephant Room (Steve Cuiffo, Geoff Sobelle, Trey Lyford), Anita Gonzalez, James Braly, Butch Morris, Marlies Yearby, and Joseph Chaikin. Joel has directed and acted in new plays and musicals at theatres in Minnesota, Illinois, New Jersey, Georgia, and New York. At Firehouse he's directed THE WAR IN HEAVEN by Joseph Chaikin and Sam Shepard, a workshop of Bruce Slater's DILEMMA OF ESCAPE, and the world premieres of Walter Braxton's opera TO DAMASCUS (2018 RTCC winner, Best Original Work) and Chandler Hubbard's ANIMAL CONTROL (2020 ATCA/Steinberg New Play citation). Joel received his M.F.A. in Directing from Rutgers University / Mason Gross School of the Arts, his Ph.D. in Theatre from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, and was Associate Professor, Chair, and Production Manager of the Hunter College Department of Theatre.
Tad is pleased to return as Technical Director of the Firehouse Theatre, the position he held from 2004 thru 2012. In that time he was involved in over fifty productions at the theatre, as master set carpenter, also as set designer, sound designer and lighting designer for several productions. He is looking forward to the growth of the theatre in the future, and working with the many talented directors, designers, actors and techs on many productions to come.
Tennessee is a media artist, scenic designer, and painter. She's collaborated with international performing artists and writers creating interactive animated works presented in venues such as Roulette Intermedium, Kennedy Center, New Museum NYC, VideoFest Berlin, Ars Electronica, and Videotheque de Paris: General Assembly of Multimedia Writing. Her breakthrough CD-rom Scrutiny in the Great Round won the Milia d’Or at Cannes in 1996. For ten years she served on the faculty of the School of Visual Arts: MFA Computer Arts in NYC. As a Fulbright Fellow in 2011 she lived in Hungary for a year and collaborated with contemporary choreographers. Represented by Granary Books NY, her works are part of the permanent collections of The Getty Center, New York Public Library, and Museum of Modern Art Library. Dixon received her M.F.A. from Virginia Commonwealth University. Her recent set and video designs for Richmond area theatres include Quill Theatre's KING LEAR, STUPID F**KING BIRD, and MR. DICKENS' CHRISTMAS CAROL; 5th Wall's THE HUMAN TERRAIN; VA Rep's THE END OF WAR; and Firehouse's UBU 84 and THE BOY IN THE BATHROOM.
Associate Producer / Curator of Music Programming
Ilya joins the Firehouse team after twenty-two years in network news. Throughout his career in television he always found ways to incorporate his first love -- music -- from his early years as chief audio operator of "Good Morning Richmond" which hosted musical acts, to his time as Managing Editor of a news program in Washington D.C. where Ilya featured live music to end each broadcast. Ilya has also produced, recorded, and performed with Richmond bands Stone Kitchen, The IllBrain Duo, and Tom Smith.
Todd joins Firehouse after working with the Virginia Opera for six seasons as the Education Coordinator for the Opera's Touring Education Program. He was also a stagehand for over two dozen operas. He received his B.F.A. in Theater Management and Production from the University of the Arts and while living in Philadelphia worked with several regional theaters such as The Philadelphia Theater Company, Lantern Theater, and Backseat Productions. His favorite directing project was THE WOOLGATHERER for the Philadelphia Fringe Festival.
Emily is a technician by day and a stage manager by night. She graduated from Virginia Wesleyan University in Virginia Beach in 2018 with a B.A. in Theatre and a minor in Communications, and moved home to Richmond to join the ranks of the Richmond theatre community. She has been a props master, scenic carpenter and painter, costumes mistress and seamstress, and stage manager for over 20 collegiate performances including INTO THE WOODS, ALMOST MAINE, CONSTELLATIONS, and BLITHE SPIRIT. She's worked with the Sandler Center for Performing Arts in Virginia Beach, the VA Arts Fringe Festival, and with Virginia Musical Theatre on their production of LA CAGE AUX FOLLES.
Board of Directors
Gunther Brinkman (Treas), Victoria Ball Sheridan (Sec'y), Steve Gaidos (Pres), D. Presley Garrett, Jude Powers, Cheri Yochelson