Katherine Craddock

Vanessa Fletcher

Janine Russo

Whitney Reid 

Katherine Craddock

Kathy became fascinated with the theatre at an early age when, at age 11, she jumped in with both feet —creating a stage script for, directing and starring in a 6th grade production of Mary Poppins. During her high school and college years, she performed regularly for Children’s Theatre and the Festival of Arts at Dogwood Dell, and played lead roles in a variety of musicals and dramatic productions. She studied dramatic arts and speech at the University of Richmond — where she played the role of Dorothy in Wizard of Oz. During and after college — Kathy performed in numerous community theatre productions, including Swift Creek Mill Playhouse productions of Carnival, Mame (Mother Burnside) and Stephen Sondheim’s Company (Susan). She was greatly influenced by her mentor, the late Marion Waymack, whose infectious enthusiasm for the stage and dedication to the pursuit of excellence set a standard Kathy strives to emulate.

In 1992, Kathy joined the WEAG Choir and, until 1997, appeared regularly in WEAG’s MFA productions, including Glorious Christmas Nights and Master’s Plan. In 1998, she transitioned from the stage into the director’s chair ─ also joining GCN’s Creative Concept Team as a primary script writer. Kathy directed GCNs 1998 through 2014, and was director for Master’s Plan 2012. She also wrote and directed WEAG’s 1999 Easter production, “The Deliverer.” In GCNs 2003 and 2008, she briefly returned to the stage to portray King Herod’s sinister and manipulative sister, Salome. Kathy teaches various classes for the Drama Academy, for which she is the Administrator. She also serves as Dance Academy Administrator and Director for weACADEMIES of Art. -Back to Top-

Vanessa Fletcher

_1002000-2Vanessa graduated with a double major in English and Communication Arts from Asbury College, where she studied acting, musical theatre, and play direction. While currently in education sales and training, Vanessa has a teaching background in English. She is a Glorious Christmas Nights veteran and has appeared in a variety of roles, including Mrs. Snooty in Miracle on Grace Street, Myrtle in GCN 2003, Hazel in GCN 2007, and Mistress Lewis in GCN 2008. For GCN 2008, she also served as Music Director for the GCN Children’s Chorus. Most recently, Vanessa delighted audiences with her portrayal of Phoenix Bird in “Under the Same Stars” (GCN 2014). She also sings in the WEAG Sanctuary Choir.

Vanessa is a gifted teacher and particularly enjoys working with children. She currently teaches Kids’ Drama for the Drama Academy.

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Janine Russo

Janine Head ShotJanine brings a wealth of training and experience to the weDRAMA teaching team.  She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Virginia Commonwealth University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting and, in 1998, earned her Master of Fine Arts degree in Acting, also from VCU.  From 1995 to 2001, she served on the Adjunct Faculty for VCU’s Department of Theatre, teaching Introduction to Theatre, Acting I, Acting II, Speech and Voice I, and Public Speaking.  From 1999-2001 she taught Public speaking classes for the Non-Profit Management Certificate Program, sponsored by VCU & The Community Foundation Richmond.  From 1996-2001 Janine was an acting instructor for elementary, middle and high school students at the School of the Performing Arts and, since 2000, she has been employed as a middle school teacher by Orchard School, teaching both Theatre Arts and Music.  Janine was a Founding Member and Musical Theatre Director for Luther Memorial School’s Summer Arts Drama Program in Richmond, Virginia (1996-2011).

Janine also is an engaging and an accomplished performer.  Some of her favorite credits include the Sibiu International Theatre Festival for VCU’s Department of Theatre (Romania, 1998) and Richmond area roles in Prisoner of Second Avenue (Dogwood Dell), I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change (Swift Creek Mill), Italian American Reconciliation (Barksdale), Little Shop of HorrorsThree MusketeersBrighton Beach MemoirsWhat I Did Last Summer and Baby.  She also appeared on the Dutch Apple Dinner Theatre stage (Lancaster, Pennsylvania), in Fiddler on the RoofPhantomBedfull of Foreigners and Alice in Wonderland, and in Singing in the Rain at Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre (Fort Myers, Florida).  WEAG audiences will remember her as Cruella de Vil in Glorious Christmas Nights 2015, Sincerely Yours.  Janine also enjoys singing in the WEAG Sanctuary Choir.

Janine will teach Improv Drama to youth and adults during the 2016 summer session.

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Whitney Reid

whitney hsWhitney, born and raised in Richmond, took some of her first steps on the WEAG stage.  Whitney attended James Madison University, where she continued to pursue the performing arts, training in Stanislavski and Meissner methods, clowning, heightened language, contemporary scene study, acting for film, movement for the actor, voice for the stage, publicity and management, costume design, stage direction, stage management and audition technique.  During her college years, Whitney performed in variety of productions, including “Into the Woods,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Letters to Sala,” “Our Town,” “Grey Gardens,” “Reckless,” and “A Fear of Falling,” and directed “Peter Pan.”  Her television credits include “Investigation Discovery: Nightmare Next Door,” “House of Horrors: Kidnapped,” and “Virginia Film Festival: Virginia RX.”  She spent the summer of 2014 working as a character performer at Walt Disney World, which Whitney describes as “a very magical experience!”

From the age of seven, Whitney has been a part of the Glorious Christmas Nights family, and GCN was where she fell in love with performing!  More seasoned GCN patrons will remember Whitney as the original Becka in “A Storybook Christmas.”  Most-recently, she appeared as Breezy, the Seahorse, in GCN 2014: “Under the Same Stars.”  She also shares her vocal talents as a member of WEAG Worship Teams.  Whitney currently teaches improv and traditional dramatic skills to students of all ages.

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