Meet the Cast

TYISHA CLEMMONS

Francis

Tyisha is excited and has enjoyed working with the Highview Arts Center. As a youth and during college, Tyisha was involved with acting in plays in both large and blackbox capacities. She is excited to return back to the stage in her debut as Frances in Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. When she isn’t on stage, Tyisha enjoys spending time with her and working with her students as a 4th grade teacher. She wants to thank her wonderful husband and children for all of their support and love!

DAISY GRAY

Samanta 

Daiys an 11-year-old actress from Louisville, KY. She attends Crosby Middle School, where her favorite subjects are art and science. Daisy has participated in two musicals at Stopher Elementary (“The Jungle Book”- Bagheera and “Matilda”- Big Kids Ensemble). She is also a talented singer, and performed a solo piece for her 5th grade graduation. Daisy is looking forward to performing at Highview Arts Center as Samantha, and she cannot wait to get you into the holiday spirit! She wants to thank her family and friends for their support, and Highview for the opportunity. She hopes you enjoy the show!

ROZ HOWLETT

Mother O'Hanlon

This is Roz Howlett’s first show.  She is a lover of the arts and is thrilled to be able to get involved in the local art community.  She is a Learning Coordinator at St. Nicholas Academy, where she also co-sponsors the drama club.  Roz is a wife and mother to three.  In her spare time, she enjoys her cat, Tilly, and bargain shopping.  

TAYLOR HOOPER

Wanda

Taylor Hooper, who plays the role of Wanda (Walter), is excited to be performing in her first play since starting her acting journey. She currently studies acting at HB Studio in New York City, and has previously studied with The Barrow Group in New York. Although her main focus is acting she also is writing a screenplay for a TV show that made it to the finals in the Nashville Film Festival’s “Pitch” Competition. When not practicing her acting craft and being a mom of 3 she likes to spend her free time traveling as often as possible, reading mainly mystery novels, and strength training several days a week.

AVA LANG

Wendy 

Ava Lang (Wendy) is 10 years old and attends 5th grade at Wilt Elementary School. She loves to draw, create stories, watch movies and help her mom, Jill-Marie Schierbaum with theatre stuff. She is super excited to be a part of Yes, Virginia There is a Santa Claus with her classmate/friend Alexis. Her past experience includes Common Threads: interwoven portraits of a pandemic (Looking for Lilith). When she grows up she wants to be an illustrator and write children's books. She can't wait to do another show! 

LAUREN TOSTE MATAS

Viriginia

Hello! My name is Lauren, and I am playing the role of Virginia. I am in the fifth grade, and I am 11 years old. This is my first time acting and I have had a lot of fun and learning a lot. I am of Cuban heritage. When I grow up, I want to be an actress. My parents have put me in everything. They are very supportive. My mom is Maria and she is a teacher, and my dad is Lester and he is a Material Coordinator. My outside hobbies are dancing, going outside, and playing with my dog “Night.  What I would like for the audience to know is that this show can teach you life lessons. “No matter what people say, you believe what you want to believe.” 

DEBBIE LEEDOM

Hannah Parker

Hi My name is Debbie and I'm 29 years old. I’ve been married for 8 yrs. I have amazing and talented kids. I work at a Christian Academy as a teacher assistant. I travel everywhere I possibly can. My side hobby is photography. I enjoy doing photography for fun. I also own a construction company.

MICHAEL SCHMID

Father O'Hanlon

A Chicago native making his Louisville debut, Michael is beyond delighted to ignite his return to the stage after two decades of working exclusively in Film.   Michael obtained a BA in Theatre & Drama from Indiana University Bloomington in December of ’99, where he appeared in various productions such as The Winter’s Tale (Clown), Woyzeck (Drum Major) and Vinegar Tom (Jack).  After graduation, he relocated to Austin, TX for three years to study and work in the thriving up and coming world of Independent Cinema.  Michael would eventually return to the Chicagoland area and go on to work as an Actor in over fifty film productions, while also growing as a writer, director, producer and film editor.  Using these skills, Michael founded his own production company (4Lizard Productions) with his longtime uber talented friends Chad Foor and Patrick Love. Their latest feature film (Fangs Vs. Spurs) can be viewed currently on Amazon Prime, for those who wish to graciously support the creative artists of the world (hint – hint!).  Favorite past stage performances include Romeo and Juliet (Tybalt) and Death of a Salesman (Happy Loman) with Monroe County Civic Theatre, Our Country’s Good (Lieutenant Ralph Clark) The Crucible (Reverend Samuel Parris), Brigadoon (Harry Douglass) and Guys and Dolls (Harry the Horse) with Avon Performing Arts Connection, as well as his award winning performance in Meet My Husbands (Jeff Billings) with Hendricks Civic Theatre.  Michael is gracious and humbled for the opportunity to work with David DeSpain and this wonderful cast he has assembled and extends his love and gratitude to his amazing wife Lisa and all of his friends and family for their undying support and encouragement towards his pursuit of passions and dreams and allowing him to remain forever young at heart.

BAYLEIGH RICCON

Prologue

Bayleigh is 10yrs old and in the 5th grade. She is a 1st yr student with Classical Melodies Performance Center. She has a passion for acting. Her favorite club is drama club. She loves spending time with family and friends. She looks forward to being a part of this Highland Arts Center production.

REINA RICCON

Prologue

Reina is 7yrs old. She is in the 1st grade. She is a model and actress for John Casablancas Model and Talent Management. She is also signed with Buzz Entertainment. Reina has been in a Fairy photoshoot and has also shot a catalog for Miracle Playgrounds. She does enjoy shopping, photoshoots and hanging out with friends.  

ISABELLA SCHULTZ

Postal Carrier/Prologue

Isabella Schultz is a 4th grader at Hartstern Elementary and a Louisville native. She is making her acting debut in Yes Virginia, There is a Santa Claus. She's not a stranger to performing though. She has spent the last 2 years as a dancer with BMP Dance Studio.  She was a cheerleader for 2 years and a Girl Scout for 4 years. She's always had a flair for the dramatic. She was born the day the Mayan calendar ended and she jokes she saved the world. You're welcome! When she isn't busy with her multiple activities she can be found loving her 3 cats, drawing, or watching videos. Her mom is Renee Roy. Isabella hopes that everyone enjoys the show!

JAYLYNNE SMITH

Prologue

Jalynne Smith is a Freshman at James Madison HS (Homeschool) and a Louisville Native. Jalynne has spent the last 10 years on stage as a dancer, and has recently began her career as a model for Kat Beall Photography, an ambassador for ISP Dance Wear and now, an actress. Previously, she has performed in the Nutcracker and other Productions in the Dance World since age 7. She also played a Cratchit Kid in The Christmas Carol with The Dove in 2017. Jalynne has an old soul as she loves to watch black and white sitcoms, as I Love Lucy is a favorite, and she loves Elvis. She also volunteers at her dance studio, BMP Dance Studio, as a Teacher Assistant and has apprenticed at Salon 20/20 on Shelbyville Rd. Jalynne has a younger brother, LJ, and her parents are Amanda and James Smith. Jalynne hopes that everyone enjoys the show!

ALEXIS TILTON

Mary Lou

Alexis Tilton (10) is a Louisville native and 5th grader at Wilt Elementary. This is her acting debut  although she does participate in drama club at school. Alexis is also on the school’s cross country team and has medaled many times. Alexis loves to write, sing and act as well as spend time with her 4 siblings and two Moms.

PATRICE WISEMAN

Martha

Patrice Wiseman is a Louisville native! She is a 2000 graduate of Sacred Heart Academy! She has been a performer since she was 3 years old – starting her dance education at Harold Roberts School of Dance. Most recently she has been cast in the movie “Just One Life” as an extra!

She is the daughter of Susan Holmes and Michael Wiseman. She is employed at Mariposa Place and she absolutely loves it! She also teaches dance at BMP Dance Studio and is in the adult tap class at Oldham County Arts Center.

She gives her love to her family and friends and hopes they enjoy the show as much as she enjoyed being in it.

Meet the Creative Team

DAVID DESPAIN

Director

David DeSpain is a veteran actor of the local theater scene and has branched out a number of times to direct. He is very glad to be directing this particular production of Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus here at HAC. David is very glad to be in on the ground floor of this new theater venue. He sees it as a challenge that he is very eager to undertake. He feels that more theater spaces spread throughout the city can only be a good thing.

He is so glad that he was able to work with such a talented and enthusiastic cast and crew for this production. He also wishes to say thank you to the good people at HAC for this opportunity.

He hopes that you enjoy the show and have a wonderful Holiday Season.

KRISTEN SCOTT

Production Stage Manager

Kristen Scott has loved the theater all her life. The magic of it all never ceases to surprise her.  She has performed many roles within the theatre including:  working the house, props/prop construction, costuming, dresser, set construction, performing and stage management.  Some of her favorite shows she has worked on were: The Spider or The Fly, Women Playing Hamlet, Ken Ludwig’s The Gods Of Comedy and the children’s show Help Santa Save Christmas.  She gives much thanks to her Mo and Daddy as well as her friend and fellow co-worker on this show David.  Peace and Blessings to all.  Merry Christmas!

OLIVIA RALEY

Assistant

Stage Manager

 

Hannah Green

Costumer Designer

 

Nick Dent

Lighting Designer

 

Jill Scheirbaum

Production Designer

 

Patrick Jump

Set Designer