Meet The Company

Board of Directors & Staff

Gizelle Alexander

Wendy Bernard

Bill DeMaida
Marya DiPerna

Gina Donato
Jim O'Rourke
Diane Stewart
Daniel C. Vollaro, C.P.A.

Emily Mattina, Artistic Director

Jeffrey Lapham, Executive Director

Brian Bowyer, General Manager
Rebecca Shaw, Education Manager

Lisa VanGeersdaele, Marketing Associate


2015 Elizabeth L. Mahaffey Arts Administration Fellow, Emily Mattina


2015 Mayor’s Arts & Culture Award  

2012 Certificate of Special Recognition for Service To Youth in New Britain  

2011 Arts Organization of the Year from the Waterbury Neighborhood Council 

  2004 Celebrate our Communities Award from Community Fdn of Gr. New Britain 

2006 Forty under 40, Emily Mattina & Jeffrey Lapham 


Headlined Shakespeare in the Litchfield Hills (Washington) 2012-2017

2017 named an impactful Cornerstone Partner of the Conn. Community Fdn.

Headlined Shakespeare on the Shoreline (Guilford) 2012-2017

Connecticut Roster of Teaching Artists includes Emily Mattina

Connecticut Roster of Performing Artists includes Shakesperience Productions, Inc.

Headlined Shakespeare in Library Park (Waterbury) 2004-2014  

Headlined Festival! Stratford, at American Shakespeare Festival Theater 2009-2011


Emily Mattina, Artistic Director

The founder of Shakesperience, Ms. Mattina tirelessly guides the company to offering innovative touring productions, including a new program highlighting the culturally and historically rich neighborhoods of Waterbury, CT and starring its youngest residents. In her 15 years of directing, her productions have headlined festivals, including Shakespeare in Library Park, Shakespeare in Hollow Park, Festival! Stratford, Shakespeare on the Shoreline, and Vintage Shakesperience, a tour of Connecticut’s wine trail. Emily’s educational programs and public performances have received high acclaim and recognition, including enthusiastic reviews, presentations for Connecticut’s HOTS Schools, speaking and interviews for UCONN Theatre classes, and guest lectures for her alma mater, the University of New Hampshire.

Ms. Mattina has worked as an actor, director, teaching artist, and arts administrator for companies and regional tours based in California, Connecticut, Minnesota, and New York. She consults with other nonprofit arts groups regarding collaboration, outreach, education and positive company culture. She is proudly listed on the Connecticut Office of the Arts Directory of Teaching Artists. The New Haven Business Times named Ms. Mattina among the 2006 "Forty Under 40" for her professional success and community involvement in New Haven County. Ms. Mattina was also named the State of Connecticut’s 2015 Elizabeth L. Mahaffey Arts Administration Fellow.


Since attaining her M.A. in 17th Century English Literature with an emphasis on Shakespeare from the University of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, England, Ms. Mattina has directed approximately half of Shakespeare’s canon at least once. Her favorite ongoing creative endeavor is nurturing her two beautiful children, Thomas Charles and Viola Lucia. 

Braley Degenhardt


is a cum laude graduate of the University of Connecticut, where she received her BFA in Acting and studied Shakespeare at the Theatre Academy of London. Recent credits include As You Like It (Celia), Our Country's Good (Liz Morden/Lt. Dawes), and Sense and Sensibility (Lady Middleton) at Connecticut Repertory Theatre.

David Raccio


is a Connecticut native and a recent graduate of Muhlenberg College where he earned a BA in Theatre (acting concentration) as well as Political Science. David studied physical comedy at the Accademia dell’Arte in Arezzo Italy. As a student, David made a name for himself by playing many absurd, larger than life characters such as, “Father Ubu” in Ubu Roi, “The Fire Captain” in The Bald Soprano, and “Dr. Lombardi (il dottore)” in The Servant of Two Masters."

Brian Bowyer


holds a BA in Theatre & Performance from SUNY Purchase along with an AA from Naugatuck Valley Community College. He has been a certified Theatrical Combatant for the past 5 years through Dueling Arts International. Some of his favorite roles include: (Don Pedro) Much Ado About Nothing, (Truffaldino) The Servant of Two Masters, (Porthos) The Three Musketeers, & (Lenny) Rumors.

Michelle Mason


graduated magna cum laude from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a BFA in Acting. She has assisted in teaching theatre for kids in Texas and North Carolina as well as performing in educational theatre at the Greensboro Science Center. Recent credits include Big Love, As You Like It, and Machinal. 

Céline Montaudy


is thrilled to join the Shakesperience ensemble. A Summa Cum Laude graduate (University of Rhode Island, BFA in acting), she studied at the British American Dramatic Academy and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts with internships at the Shakespeare Theatre of NJ. Credits include Viola, Shakespeare in Love; Ophelia, Hamlet; Helena, Alls Well That Ends Well; Demetrius, Titus Andronicus.