Elise is a graduate of the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City and The New School. Working in the entertainment industry for over two decades, she has performed on stage, film, and television and brings her years of performance experience to this role. Elise has taught musical theatre performance in Staten Island parochial schools and has been a theatre teaching artist for Sundog as well as other companies in association with the New York City Department of Education.
Alyssa Ammirati is a communications and media college graduate with over two years of experience. She has developed a high level of expertise in journalism, storytelling, graphic design, social media, and TV production. Alyssa attended Sacred Heart University where she majored in Digital Communications. She previously worked as an intern at the Staten Island Advance where she wrote over 50 stories and as a Production Assistant for Fox & Friends First on Fox News Channel.
Ellen Petillo has over 30 years of business experience in brokerage, investment advisory, accounting, and most recently in banking – with expertise in client liaison, payroll, billing, and office management. Her past background in managing an office environment complements Sundog’s growing organization.
Ellen handles Sundog’s financial operations and day-to-day management within the company and likes the interaction of working with a not-for-profit company that makes positive changes in the community.
Ellen has lived on Staten Island since she was a young child and attended Port Richmond High School and College of Staten Island.
Jeannine Otis has participated in a variety of arts-in education initiatives as a curriculum design consultant, coordinator, and teaching artist. These include: music, music therapy (extensive experience in special education), movement, drama, conflict resolution through drama and mediation, theatre as a tool to address community issues, inter-generational arts programming, creative writing for songwriting and script writing, and relating modern hip-hop culture to topical themes involving positive community awareness and self-expression. She developed and delivers Sundog’s “Soundtrack of Life” Program which encourages students – through music and spoken word – to communicate artistically about a variety of issues such as gun violence, the environment, and oppression – to discuss resolutions as they relate to students’ lives.
Jeannine has been singing since the early ’80’s when she toured with such groups as Kool and the Gang and Shirley Allston and the New Shirelles. Among her stage appearances are principal roles in: Steel (Galt McDermot of Hair) by the American Repertory Theater, and Jerusalem (Liz Swados) produced by New York’s Public Theater. She also appeared at the Supper Club in Manhattan. She performs classical, pop, jazz, dance, R&B, and gospel music and has sung with Grover Washington, Webster Lewis, and Arthur Prysock.
Featured on two gold records (Dana Dane, Profile) and Reed Seed (Grover Washington, Motown), her single, “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” went to the Top Ten in Germany, Italy, and England.
A graduate of Wellesley College (B.A. in Music and Sociology) and Emerson College (M.A. in Theatre), when Jeannine is not performing or recording, she is Director of Music at Saint Marks Church in New York City.
Stephen Fehr has been Sundog’s technical director since its inception in 2002, handling all aspects of production including lighting, sound, and set design/building. He also has worked as technical director for Tracey Esposito’s Chicken Parmigiana at Caroline’s Comedy Club, Sanford Meisner Theatre in Manhattan, and The Muddy Cup in Staten Island. Steve has served as technical director at Snug Harbor Cultural Center and has designed lights for many theatre companies, including Sundog, Staten Island Shakespearean Theatre, Our Lady Star of the Sea, Mount Loretto’s CYO, as well as the Strawberry One-Act Festival in Manhattan. His degree is in mechanical engineering from Kansas State University.