Ones to Watch

Pace Students and Alumni in the Performing Arts

headshot of man

Sam Ashby ’18

Acting for Film, Television,
Voice-overs, and Commercials

Jackson in Sweet Magnolias

headshot of man with long hair smiling

Zach Bravo ’19

Musical Theater
Bailey/Rum Tug Tugger in Cats
(Broadway national tour)

headshot of man in black hat

Charles Brice ’12

Chris in In from the Cold (Netflix)
Louie Ward in City on a Hill (Showtime)
Coley Wallace in The Survivor
(Feature film)

black and white headshot of young man

Briney ’20

Acting for Film, Television,
Voice-overs, and Commercials

Conrad in The Summer I Turned Pretty
(Amazon Prime)

headshot of young blonde woman

Olivia Cece ’17

Commercial Dance
Kaylee in The Prom
(Broadway national tour)

headshot of young woman looking away from camera

Dominique Fishback

Theater Arts
Robyn on The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey (Apple TV+)
Elena in Transformers: Rise of the Beasts (Feature film, 2023)

headshot of dark haired woman

Greensmith ’18

Musical Theater
Violet Mikami in Chicago Fire

woman in front of rainbow background

Jesse James
Keitel ’15

Ruthie in Queer as Folk (Peacock)
Dr. Aspen in Star Trek: Strange New Worlds (Paramount+)
Jerrie Kennedy in Big Sky (ABC/Hulu)

red carpet photo of man in suit

David Park ’17

Musical Theater
Marquis Lafayette/Thomas Jefferson in Hamilton
(Broadway national tour)

headshot of woman with dark hair

Analise Scarpaci ’22

Musical Theater
Lydia Hilliard in Mrs. Doubtfire

headshot of young man in denim jacket

Trent Soyster ’21

Musical Theater
Giulio in Pretty Woman: The Musical
(Broadway national tour)

headshot of young woman in blue sweater

Williams ’21

Musical Theater
Emmie Thibodeaux in
Caroline, or Change

group of people in two rows smiling for camera
Top row (left to right): Brandon Maxwell ’18, Valeria Yamin ’22, Hanna Piper ’19, Madison O’Connor ’21, Sydney Mesher ’19, JoJo Carmichael ’22, Elizabeth Dupont (Henn) ’18, Matthew Deloch ’21. Bottom Row (left to right): Kathleen Laituri ’18, Amanda Mitchell ’18, Maddie Rodrigue ’18, Caitie Russell ’20, Stevie Mack (Furlong) ’18, Emily King ’19.

Rocking the Rockettes:
Representing Pace at Radio City

This winter, the Radio City Rockettes ensemble featured 14 Pace students and alumni as they danced into the spotlight at the famed Radio City Music Hall for the return of the Christmas Spectacular, a New York City holiday tradition.

headshot of young woman in green dance costumerJoJo Carmichael ’22, Commercial Dance

How do you think your time at Pace has prepared you for this opportunity?
“The Pace commercial dance program is very demanding physically and mentally in the best way possible and has always pushed me to be my best. And that is exactly what being a Rockette is. You are constantly aiming to be your best self every rehearsal and every show.”

Pace has a tradition of having many dancers perform with the Rockettes. What is it like to have that connection with so many others in the group this year, especially as a first-year member?
“It was great going into this job with some of my Pace family. It’s exciting being able to create new memories with people you already feel connected to. It also gave me a sense of familiarity with a new territory, which is always nice to have.”

Headshot of woman in Christmas dance costumerSydney Mesher ’19, Commercial Dance

How have you grown since your first season as a Rockette?
“To start, I have a lot more confidence going into my second season because I know what to expect a bit. Understanding the behind-the-scenes of the show allows me to feel more secure this year. I also am just so thankful to be back with the Rockettes after this past year. I’m grateful for any opportunity, as long as I just get the option to do what I love.”

What is it like to have a Pace connection with so many others in the group?
“Performing with so many Pace alumni is such a gift. It is so special to have a unique bond within the Rockettes line. I truly believe that Pace was a key part in our training to get us all here. There is a lot of Pace pride!”

Headshots courtesy of MSG Entertainment.

PPA Students on Big Screen at the Tonys

This fall, the Pace School of Performing Arts put on a hybrid production of Fugitive Songs, where performers were on stage while audiences watched through a livestream. As Pace University’s first production featuring performers on stage since the start of the pandemic, Fugitive Songs included 19 musical pieces, blending traditional folk music, gospel, and contemporary pop to spotlight the stories of people on the run in America.

Bella Lopez ’23, Musical Theater, described the show as a collection of “beautiful stories of friendship, love, and loss, and a bunch of beautiful harmonies, beautiful voices singing together.”

In September 2021, the cast of Fugitive Songs was featured on the big screen at the Tony Awards, appearing in a “Broadway is Back” video, welcoming live theater back to the stage. When Rebecca Aparicio, director of the Pace production of Fugitive Songs, received an invitation to have the cast participate in the video—which was shown that night at the Winter Garden Theatre—she jumped at the opportunity.

“Being in the video shown at the Tonys was really special because it was the first celebration back for live theater,” said Sam Foti ’24, Musical Theater.

Watch the full video online >>

Getting to Know Jennifer Holmes, PhD, Executive Director of Pace School of Performing Arts

headshot of woman in front of treeReturning to Pace University to serve as the executive director of the Pace School of Performing Arts (PPA) “really felt like a homecoming” for Jennifer Holmes, PhD. Holmes had previously taught at PPA before taking on roles as the associate dean for academic affairs at the School of Drama at The New School and as the dean of the College of Arts, Communications, and Design at Long Island University.

“The Pace School of Performing Arts has a history of nurturing courageous and creative thinkers who shape the arts industry here in America and abroad,” said Holmes of her appointment as executive director. “I am proud to join this team of artists, educators, and administrators who together will expand the boundaries of contemporary theater and performance. I look forward to sharing my experience with them and, equally, learning from them. Graduates of the Pace School of Performing Arts are positioned to be the change makers and innovators who will ensure our industry is more imaginative, more equitable, more diverse, and more inclusive. I am thrilled and inspired by the opportunity to lead one of the most exciting and highly regarded performing arts schools in the world.”

Watch the full video online >>

Affairs of the Arts

From September through May, the Pace University art scene came alive with new leadership and a calendar of exhibits and artist talks to showcase student and faculty work, and inspire creativity and self-expression.

We Wear the Mask

June 1–September 17, 2021 ‣ This exhibition from alumnus Dondre Stuetley ’15 examines the reclaiming of Black identity and space within a societal oppressive state. Through portraiture, he questions the roles of patriarchy, racism, homophobia, and gender discrimination on the dismantling of Black subjectivity.

flyer for art exhibit called SubstanceSubstance

September 27–October 30, 2021 ‣ For the first time in-person, Substance brought together the work of five abstract artists—Diego Anaya, Liz Atz, Linda Ekstrom, Adebunmi Gbadebo, and Alberto Lule—who express meaning via their materials rather than through representational imagery.


Sights Unseen

black background with yellow and red circleJune 1–September 17, 2021 ‣ This two-person alumnae show, Sights Unseen, from Ashleigh Deosaran ’16 and Alexandra Gauss ’10, could also be called“Sites Unseen.” Deploying different signs, both bodies of work represent the limits of vision and consider how we “see” the unseen as simultaneously orienting and disorienting.

Sanitation Celebration

flyer for art exhibit called Sanitation CelebrationNovember 14, 2021–January 29, 2022 ‣ This exhibition sponsored by Mack Trucks, featuring artwork created by New York City Department of Sanitation employees and artists in residence, celebrated the talents of the municipal workers who collect 12,000 tons of trash and recycling every day across New York City.

flyer for Annual Art Student ExhibitionAnnual Art
Student Exhibition

April 8–23, 2022 ‣ From digital art, photography, and video to acrylics, charcoals, and watercolors, this exhibit showcased the best work of 65 individual students from the 2021–22 academic year.



February 11–March 26, 2022 ‣ Ceaphas Stubbs innovatively married analog and digital photographic techniques with collage and sculpture to produce imagery that is simultaneously intimate, nostalgic, and Afrofuturistic.

(Insert Here):
Project Studio

April 29–May 12, 2022 ‣ This exhibition, provocatively called Insert Here, featured pieces from Project Studio, the self-directed capstone course for students graduating with a BFA in Art, in their chosen medium.

Gallery Assistants

Gallery assistant Anna Zhang ’25 lighting the SO CLOSE exhibit. This year’s art gallery assistants were Elizabeth Hernandez ‘24, Camryn Thayer ’22, Mariana Garcia Tinoco ’25, Kiyara Youngblood ’26, and Anna Zhang ’25.

About the Artists

We are delighted to feature three Dyson College students’ artwork on the cover, inside cover, and within this issue. Theirs, along with many other students’ works, were showcased at two student exhibitions at the Pace University Art Gallery this spring.

We asked our students to describe their piece and their inspiration for it. Here’s what they said.

young woman smiling for camera in front of city buildingsFind Your Wings (cover) by Destini Smith ’22, Art
“Funny enough, this piece was a very random idea that I drew in my sketchbook and after sketching it, all I knew is that I wanted to paint it immediately. Monarch butterflies are extremely important to me and I’m very connected to them, so I wanted to create this ethereal being that is a butterfly goddess surrounded by gorgeous butterflies.

“The title of this piece is from the title of a Tyler, the Creator song about finding your wings so you can go fly and be free, and that’s exactly what this painting is about. The painting itself is a reminder to free yourself. Butterflies are beautiful, diverse creatures that are free to fly wherever they want, and that type of freedom is what I feel when I look at the painting.”

Read the full interview online.

young woman standing in front of shrubGlowing (inside cover) by Caroline Schneider, Art
“This piece means quite a bit to me. It is the last piece I painted in acrylic before my professor graciously gifted me her old oils, which have changed the painting game for me. This piece represents the point in my artistic career where I broke down the walls of what I am comfortable with and became ambitious.

“I gravitated immediately towards the areas of the still life with the most reflection as I believe it adds an element of playfulness to an image with static objects. Working with the reflective surfaces allowed the colored lights to be visualized in all of their glory.”

Read the full interview online.


headshot of young manGrand Finale (student exhibit feature piece) by John Towers ’22, Art
“The inspiration for Grand Finale came from being in New York during the COVID-19 lockdown and trying to recreate specific moments that influenced my life. This piece is inspired by a day I had with my girlfriend and a song that I couldn’t get out of my head while working on this piece.

Grand Finale not only represents the end of a long journey to graduate from college, but most importantly expressing how I feel without having to write it down. Grand Finale is a celebration of a moment I’ll never forget at the beginning of my artistic career.”

Read the full interview online.