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Dorothy Milne 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 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 Robert Kauzlaric Marketing Director
Robert is a member of Lifeline’s artistic ensemble and has been working with the company since 2000. Before joining the Lifeline administrative staff in 2008, he spent nearly a decade in group sales and marketing in the hospitality industry. 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.
Erica Foster 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.
Brian Bush Brian Bush Development Manager
Bush earned his B.F.A. in Theatre Performance from the University of Idaho and his M.S. in Nonprofit Management with a fundraising emphasis from The Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership. He comes to Lifeline Theatre after working as Managing Director and Co-Founder of Dark Humour Productions. During his tenure, he fostered a relationship with Hollins University's playwriting department to create an annual One Act Play Festival that is now performed across the nation. He Co-Founded Red Ink Theatre and its sketch comedy troupe 4 Days Late, where he volunteered as Company Manager and Artistic Ensemble Member from 2006-10. He has worked with Polarity Ensemble Theatre, Gorilla Tango Theatre, Stage 773, The Arc Theatre, Victory Gardens, and Shoestring Productions. He has trained at iO, The Annoyance, and Second City’s writers’ program.
Julie Ganey Julie Ganey Education Director
Julie comes to the Education Director position after teaching in Lifeline’s residency program for 6 years. She served as Director of Education at 2nd Story from 2009–2015, and Outreach Director at Next Theatre from 2007–2011, and she continues to work with students of all ages through the Goodman Theatre. Julie has spent two decades as an artistic associate at Wavelength, an award-winning comedy ensemble that provides professional development for educators nationwide. She has created and led workshops for teachers all over the country on communication skills, using improvisation in the classroom, and professional learning communities. Julie’s bullying prevention program, Stand Up on the Schoolyard, has been presented to students and educators within the Chicago Public School system and across the country. In addition, she has performed in numerous Chicago theatre productions, including her original solo shows, The Half-Life of Magic and Love Thy Neighbor... till it hurts.
Lavina Jadhwani Lavina Jadhwani Casting Director
Lavina was recently named Time Out Chicago’s “Best Next Generation Stage Director.” She is an Artistic Associate at Silk Road Rising (Ching Chong Chinaman, Gold Boy/Emerald Girl) and Oak Park Festival Theatre (Hamlet, Twelfth Night). She also served as the Artistic Director of Rasaka Theatre Company from 2007-2013, where she directed Much Ado About Nothing, the Chicago premiere of Gruesome Playground Injuries, and directed and curated the Chicago premiere of Yoni Ki Baat (2009 & 2010) and culture/clash: the nation’s first fully-produced South Asian short play festival. She is a recipient of the Drama League’s Classical Directing Fellowship, an SDCF Observership, an Illinois Board of Higher Education Fellowship, and an LMDA Residency Award. Jadhwani is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University (BFA, Scenic Design; Masters, Arts Management) and the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy; she will complete an MFA in Directing at The Theatre School at DePaul University in June 2015.
Joe Schermoly Joe Schermoly Technical Director
Joe has been the Technical Director at Lifeline for four seasons, during which time he has designed sets for The Mystery of the Pirate Ghost, A Tale of Two Cities, The City & The City, and The Count of Monte Cristo. Joe is also an ensemble member with the Griffin Theatre, where he has designed and built many sets including Titanic, Spelling Bee, Flare Path, Punk Rock, Port, and Constant Wife. His other design work includes productions with Theatre Wit (Seven Homeless Mammoths, Completeness), Sideshow (Stupid F***ing Bird, Idomeneus, The Ugly One) and Irish Theatre of Chicago (The Seafarer, Lay Me Down Softly). Joe studied set design at Northwestern University and has received two After Dark Awards and two Jeff Nominations. See more of his work at
Benjamin W. Dawson 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 Sideshow Theatre Company, 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 an Artistic Associate with Sideshow Theatre Company and the Assistant Technical Director for Lookingglass Theatre Company.
Sam Moryoussef Sam Moryoussef Master Electrician/AV Supervisor
Sam is starting his first season at Lifeline as the Master Electrician/AV Supervisor. He also serves as the Technical Director for Victory Gardens Theatre. He moved to Chicago this summer from North Carolina where he worked as the Assistant Technical Director for Performing Arts and Cultural Programs for Elon University. He graduated in 2010 from the University of North Carolina Greensboro with a BFA in Drama concentrating in Technical Production. He is excited to be in Chicago and working with such a welcoming group of people at Lifeline Theatre.
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