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Staff

Dorothy Milne - Artistic Director
Dorothy has been the Artistic Director of Lifeline Theatre since 1999 and an ensemble member since 1992. She has directed over twenty productions at Lifeline, receiving a Non-Equity Jeff Award (Direction) for Around the World in 80 Days in 2003; and Non-Equity Jeff Nominations (Direction) for Pistols for Two, Jane Eyre (for which she also received an After Dark Award), Strong Poison, and Gaudy Night. Outside of Lifeline, she directed Little Brother, Stardust, and No More Dead Dogs for Griffin Theatre. Previously, she received an Equity Jeff Nomination for her direction of Eleemosynary at Interplay Theatre Company. Dorothy is also involved in the Chicago storytelling scene: she has been writing and performing with the storytelling collective Sweat Girls for over 20 years, directs occasionally for 2nd Story, and at Lifeline leads The Lifeline Storytelling Project and co-curates The Fillet of Solo Festival.
Allison Cain - Managing Director
Allison was the Executive Director of The Factory Theater from 2001-2008, and the Artistic Director of Studio 108 from 1991-1998. She received her training at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA and Columbia College in Chicago and has worked almost exclusively on new work since 1990, in Los Angeles, Connecticut, Scotland and Chicago. Also an actor, Lifeline audiences will recognize Allison from her performances in Johnny Tremain, Crossing California, The Mark of Zorro, and Mariette in Ecstasy. She has also been seen in numerous productions with The Factory Theater, Mary-Arrchie, The Side Project, Griffin, Live Wire, and other fine theaters throughout the Chicagoland area over the past 21 years.
Robert Kauzlaric - Marketing Director & Casting Director
Robert is a member of Lifeline’s artistic ensemble and has been working with the company since 2000. Before joining the Lifeline staff in 2008, he spent nearly a decade in group sales and marketing in the hospitality industry, and five years as a freelance website designer. Also a published playwright, Robert has written more than a dozen theatrical adaptations which have been produced in nearly forty states around the U.S., as well as in Ireland, England, and Canada. His adaptation of H.G. Wells’ The Island of Dr. Moreau received five Non-Equity Jeff Awards, including New Adaptation and Best Production; his adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere received the Non-Equity Jeff Award for New Adaptation; and his version of Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray was nominated for New Adaptation.
Lea Pinsky - Education Director
Lea began her professional arts career in theatre by earning her BFA at NYU and acting on Broadway in the 1997 Tony-winning revival of A View From the Bridge. She then returned to Chicago to pursue an MA in Performance Studies at Northwestern University, and transition her career to arts education. Over the last 10 years in Chicago, she has managed and taught youth arts programs with Columbia College Chicago, Urban Gateways, the City of Evanston, Chicago Humanities Festival, After School Matters, Art Encounter, and Steppenwolf Theatre. As a teaching artist, she focuses on murals and beautification projects for schools and community spaces.
Alex Kyger - Development Director
Alex moved to Chicago in 2006 from the island of Bahrain, quickly becoming embedded in Chicago’s theater community as a performer, administrator, and producer. Kyger received his BFA in Theater with honors from the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University, serving as Development Apprentice at Redmoon Theater while pursuing his studies. Upon graduating, Kyger joined Red Tape Theatre as a member of the artistic ensemble and the company’s first Director of Community Engagement, establishing meaningful relationships with locally-owned businesses, securing season sponsorship, and generating a blueprint for the company’s first major giving campaign. Concurrently, Kyger served as the Executive Producer of the fledgling Les Enfants Terribles (LET) company, securing the ensemble a spot in the 2011 New York International Fringe Festival, where it received a Fringe NYC Excellence Award for Best Ensemble. Before joining the Lifeline staff, Kyger also served as American Theater Company’s Development Associate, cultivating increased grant support for the theater’s education and mainstage programming, and launching a major giving campaign to raise funds for ATC’s Youth Ensemble.
Erica Foster - Operations Director
As Lifeline's Operations Director, Erica is in charge of all audience services and oversees the entire front-of-house staff. Erica has stage managed numerous MainStage productions at Lifeline, including Watership Down, Neverwhere, Treasure Island, The Mark of Zorro (both the original production and the remount at Theatre Building Chicago), Queen Lucia: A Musical Romp (which she also assistant directed), Johnny Tremain, The Talisman Ring (2005), The Sirens of Titan, The Killer Angels, The Shadow, Around the World in 80 Days, Cat's Cradle and Cooking with Lard. For the KidSeries, she has stage managed Snowflake Tim's Big Holiday Adventure, Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type, and The Rescuers.
Benjamin W. Dawson - Production Manager
Prior to coming to Chicago, Ben served as the Production Safety Coordinator with The Santa Fe Opera and as Art Director for several television series with networks like Discovery, PBS, MTV and VH1. In Chicago, Ben has served, among other things, as Production Manager for Pine Box Theater and WildClaw Theatre; as Technical Director Haven Theatre and The Strange Tree Group; and as the Scene Shop Foreman at Goodman Theatre. In addition to his work with Lifeline, Ben is also a Company Member and the Production Manager for Sideshow Theatre Company and the Assistant Technical Director for Lookingglass Theatre Company.
Joe Schermoly - Technical Director
Joe is a set designer, technical director and a company member with Griffin Theatre. His design work has been seen at Lifeline Theatre (The Count of Monte Cristo, The City & The City), Griffin Theatre (Spelling Bee, Flare Path, Punk Rock, No More Dead Dogs, Port, Constant Wife), Theatre Wit (Completeness), Seanachaí (The Seafarer), Strawdog Theatre (Duchess of Malfi, Master and Margarita, Richard III), Sideshow Theatre (Idomeneus, The Ugly One), Eclipse (Beyond the Horizon, The Trestle at Pope Lick Creek) and more. He has also designed and built shows in London for The Finborough, Bush and Gate theatres among others. Joe studied set design at Northwestern University and has received two After Dark Awards and two Jeff Nominations. See more of his work at www.joeschermoly.com.

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