Avery Ahlmer (Noelle, Matilda u/s)
Avery is excited for her mainstage SALT debut. Other credits include Matilda the Musical (Matilda) at Limelight Theatre Company, Frozen Jr. (Young Elsa), Jungle Book Kids (Mowgli), A Year with Frog and Toad Kids (Snail), Willy Wonka Kids (Candy Man), and Annie Kids (Tessie), all at Stagelight/SALT, and The Music Man (River City Kid) at Henderson High School. Avery studies voice with Kim Russell, piano with Kirsten Slaugh, and dances at Time to Leap. Avery attends 4th grade at Mary C. Howse, where she plays violin, sings in chorus, and is learning alto saxophone. Avery loves Aladdin, monkeys, and treats. Thank you to her family and the SALT gang for giving her the chance to be a narcoleptic maggot!
Aliyeh Ashlie (Lavender)
Aliyeh is super excited to be in her first SALT main stage production following her appearance in SALT's Stagelight production of Hairspray, Jr. (Ensemble), The Music Man Kids (Winthrop Paroo), A Year With Frog & Toad Kids (Bird 1). A fifth grader at Kimberton Waldorf School, Aliyeh is an artist who loves to paint, draw, create comic strips and skits; a musician who sings, plays the ukulele and cello; an athlete who plays softball, dances and practices stunts; a friend who is always ready for the next adventure. Aliyeh would like to thank her friends and family for always supporting her dreams. Specifically she would like to recognize her grandparents Rai-Rai and Pop-Pop for always being there in the big and small moments of life. Thanks to Mr. Mike for being the awesomest voice teacher, Miss Chelsea for just being awesome and Miss Sheryl for somehow organizing us all. And to everyone else in the cast and crew at SALT for making this magical show a magical experience!
Joshua Andre Calderon (Doctor, Dad 3, Ballroom dancer, Henchman)
Josh is a lover of God, music, and life. He received an undergraduate degree from the Pennsylvania State University and works in finance. With that, he still devotes time to the one thing that he loves to do the most, using his voice to put smiles on peoples faces. He has found a second home at SALT, where he has performed in shows such as, Titanic (Fleet), CATS (Old Deuteronomy), Hunchback of Norte Dame (Frederic), Secret Garden (Fakir), Godspell (All Good Gifts & Light of the World), and currently Mamma Mia (Ensemble). His passion for theatre and music has a special place in his heart. He would like to thank God, family, and friends for their continuous support. He wants to remind everyone to “be the change you wish to see in the world.”
Nicholas “Castle” Castillo (Rudalpho/Dad 1)
Nick is excited to be making his SALT debut in Matilda. Nick has performed in shows such as A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder (Montague Navarro), Heathers the Musical (Kurt), Peter and the Starcatcher (Black Stache), Beauty and the Beast (Gaston), and Spamalot (Sir Lancelot). He has also performed with the Media Theater, Milburn Stone Theater, Wilmington Drama League, Swarthmore Players and Tidewater Players. A Junior at West Chester University, Nick is a Theater Major and looking to pursue a BA in Theater. He would like to thank his family for all their support through the years, his friends for their encouragement, vocal coach, and fellow cast and crew members for being so amazingly talented.
Hannah Cohen (Acrobat Dancer, Mom 4, Ballroom Dancer)
Hannah is a recent graduate of the PA Leadership Charter School’s Center for Performing and Fine Arts, where she has performed in many shows including Sweeney Todd (Ensemble), Little Shop of Horrors (Crystal), The Children’s Hour (Amelia Tilford), and City of Angels (Gabby/Bobbi). Hannah is excited to work at SALT for the third time, having previously been in The Little Mermaid (Jetsam), and The Crucible (Ensemble). Hannah would like to thank Chelsea for her fabulous choreography, and allowing her to tell a beautiful story through dance.
Emily Davis (Big kid)
Emily is a senior and is thrilled to be in her eighth production at SALT! Some of her previous shows include You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown (Snoopy) and Les Miserables (ensemble) at SALT, Mary Poppins (Mary Poppins) at WCA, Urinetown (Pennywise) at FaceTime Theatre, and she recently directed her school’s production of 12 Angry Men. She is so thankful for the opportunity to be in this extraordinary show and is beyond thankful to the cast and crew for all their hard work. 1 Corinthians 13:13.
Jack Dungan (Bruce)
Jack is ecstatic to be returning to SALT, following You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown (Charlie Brown). Favorite SALT Stagelight roles include Frozen, Jr. (Hans), The Music Man. Jr. (Harold Hill), and Frog and Toad, Jr. (Toad). Past credits include What A Knight! (King Arthur) at Barley Sheaf Players, and Pirates of the Curry Bean (Captain Redbeard) in a school production. In 7th grade at Lionville Middle School, Jack is the Student Council Vice President, enjoys singing in Vocal Ensemble, and playing stand-up bass in orchestra. He also enjoys playing keyboards in Downingtown School of Rock shows. Jack is thankful to Monica Pica, Mike Toolan, and Peggy Henry for their vocal coaching, and wants to thank Lauren McComas, the cast, and the incredible staff for making this musical magical! Headshot by Monica Pica.
Alessandra Fanelli (Mrs. Wormwood)
Alessandra is so excited to be a part of her first SALT production! Some past credits include Mamma Mia! (Sophie) at MuOpCo Theatre, Avenue Q (Lucy) at the Pennsylvania Playhouse, and The Marvelous Wonderettes (Cindy Lou) at Footlighters Theater. When not on stage, she is in the Box Office at Civic Theatre of Allentown. Many thanks to everyone who has supported her no matter how LOUD she has been and everyone at SALT for this lovely opportunity.
Stephen Fisher (Trunchbull)
Stephen is humbled to be playing this iconic woman! He has performed at several theater companies including: Steel River Playhouse, Ephrata Performing Arts Center, Barley Sheaf Players, Wilmington Drama League, Milburn Stone Theatre, Forge Theatre, and Vagabond Acting Troupe. His favorite credits include: Legally Blonde, (Emmett) Rent, (Mark), Into the Woods (Jack), Hunchback, (Clopin), The Secret Garden, (Dickon), Cats, (The Rum Tum Tugger) Beauty and the Beast (LeFou), Newsies (Finch), Titanic (Harold Bride) and Mamma Mia (Ensemble). Stephen would like to thank Chelsea, Mike, Lauren, and the entire cast and crew for making this experience so rewarding. Special love to the Nepotism Players, friends, and family for their constant support! Stephen would like to dedicate his performance to his mother, Beth Fisher, who is battling ALS.
Avery Ford (Tammi)
Avery is excited to show off her naughty side in her SALT debut. She's currently a 6th grader at St. Elizabeth Parish School, where she performed in her first musical, Beauty and the Beast Jr. (Ensemble) in the third grade and was hooked. Her other credits include Peter Pan Jr. (Rosetta), Alice in Wonderland Jr. (Small Alice), The Music Man Jr. (Amaryllis), Mary Poppins Jr. (Ensemble), Shrek Jr. (Baby Bear) and The Little Mermaid (Gull 1), all with The Springer Studio. Avery would like to thank her friends and family, including her newly acquired SALT family, for all their love and support. A special thanks to her voice teacher, Mary Jo Springer, for her constant encouragement and guidance.
Frances Rose Foy (Erica)
Frances is thrilled to be part of the Matilda Cast at SALT Performing Arts. Over the summer months, Frances was in Willy Wonka Jr, (Willy Wonka) at Footlighters Theatre in Berwyn via UMLY. In addition, she has been in Seussical, (ensemble), and Newsies, (ensemble). In previous summers, at UMLY, she performed in Alice in Wonderland, (ensemble) and Cinderella (ensemble). Her theatre experience began at West Chester Studio for the Performing Arts where she began acting classes at age 5 as well as participating in a variety of shows at Uptown Knauer Performing Arts Theatre. She would like to thank all of her fine teachers and coaches who have helped her grow.
Grace Halsey (Bog kid, Nurse)
Grace is so excited to be making her SALT debut in Matilda! She is a senior at Owen J Roberts High School, where she has performed in Guys and Dolls (HotBox Dancer/Dance Captain), Brigadoon (Featured Dancer), and Cinderella (Ensemble). Grace frequently performs at Firebird Theatre, having been in Willy Wonka Jr. (Willy Wonka/Candy Man), Big Fish (Featured Dancer/Sandra Dance Double), Hello, Dolly! (Featured Dancer), and Hairspray (Featured Dancer/Soloist). Grace cannot wait to put on an amazing show with an amazing group of people. She would like to thank everyone involved with this show, especially the teen cast, for making this experience as amazing as possible.
Sara Helmers (Miss Honey u/s; Acrobat Singer)
Sara is thrilled to part of yet another incredible SALT show, with an absolutely lovely cast. Sara is a current senior at Temple University studying Therapeutic Recreation, with a minor in Theatre. Sara’s favorite previous roles include Hunchback of Notre Dame (Esmeralda), CATS (Bombalurina), Titanic the Musical (Madeleine Astor), Joseph.. Dreamcoat (Wailing Wife), Little Shop of Horrors (Chiffon), and 42nd Street (Anytime Annie). Sara would love to thank her family and friends for their never-ending support in all of her endeavors. She would also love to thank Chelsea, Mike, and Lauren for another opportunity to grow and be part of this wonderful community. Enjoy the show!
Celia Hernandez (Big Kid, Doctor)
Celia cannot wait to show the audience the wacky world of Matilda at SALT! After doing theatre for approximately 6 years, performing in The Secret Garden (Martha), Sister Act (Mother Superior), James and the Giant Peach (Aunt Sponge) and many more, they cannot wait to bring to life this endearing and energetic show. They would like to give a huge thank you to the entire SALT family for their friendship on and off the set. And thank YOU for joining in the magic!
Lily Jennings (Erica)
Lily is excited to be performing in her very first MainStage show at SALT. She is a sixth grader at the Marsh Creek Sixth Grade Center in Downingtown. Lily has performed in several Stagelight productions including The Lion King Jr. (Rafiki) and Seussical Jr. (Cat). In addition, Lily has been taking ballet for 6 years and has performed in The Nutcracker as well as Cinderella with the Brandywine Ballet. Lily would like to thank Chelsea, Mike and Lauren for giving her this opportunity, as well as her friends and family. She is super excited to be "a little bit naughty!"
Molly Kent (Matilda)
Molly is thrilled to be back at SALT for her third show! Past theater credits include The Secret Garden (Mary Lennox) and The Crucible (Betty Parris) at SALT, Peter Pan, Jr. (Tinkerbell), Mary Poppins, Jr. (Jane), Les Miserables, School Edition (Young Cosette), The Little Mermaid, Jr. (Scuttle), and Shrek, Jr. (Young Fiona), with The Springer Studio. Molly, who is in 6th grade at the Center for Performing Arts (CPFA), would like to thank her family and friends for their love and support. She would also like to thank Mrs. Springer and Emily, for their amazing voice instruction, Lauren and Chelsea, for giving her this incredible opportunity, and Mike Toolan, for always making her songs better.
Sophia Kogay (Alice)
Sophia is a 4th grader in Valley Forge Elementary School and is thrilled to be in her second SALT production! Her previous credits include in Les Misérables (Little Eponine) at SALT, Mawgli (Wolf) at Splash Theater, The Sound of Music (Maria), Aladdin (Aladdin), Alice in Wonderland (White Rabbit) at MTC and she will be seen in Stalwart project “Dispatches from elsewhere” in 2020. Sophia is all about music and theater and when not exploring the acting on stage, she is taking vocal classes, Ballroom and Latin dance classes and is a member of Theater on Ice Valley Forge Performance Team. Sophia loves SALT and thanks Lauren, Chelsea, Mike and all the cast and the production team for giving her this incredible opportunity to be in this wonderful show and learn about all the different aspects of acting! Sophia would like to thank her acting teacher Lana Mokilev, her vocal teacher Julie Kremm and her amazing dance teachers Alex, Katya, Sergei, Dasha, Dima and Julia from Fred Astaire Dance Studio in West Chester for inspiring her to dream big and making her laugh!
Chloe Kunsch (Hortensia)
Chloe is so excited to be in her first SALT mainstage production! Past performance credits at SALT include Hairspray Jr. (ensemble), A Year With Frog and Toad (snail), and Cinderella Kids (mouse). Chloe is a lover of life, thinks pandas and dogs are the cutest animals, plays lacrosse, and loves singing with her amazing voice teacher, Jess Smith. She is so grateful to ALL of the awesome people at SALT who have encouraged and supported her on this journey, as well as her family.
Abby Leiboff (Lavender)
Abby is delighted to return to the SALT stage in Matilda! She previously performed in SALT’s Les Misérables (Young Eponine). She is nine years old and in fourth grade. Favorite credits include Annie (Molly) at Reading Civic Theatre; Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Children’s Chorus), Annie (Kate) and Seussical (Young Kangaroo) at Dutch Apple Dinner Theatre and West Side Story (“Somewhere” child soloist) at Ephrata Performing Arts Center (EPAC). Abby wishes to thank Lauren, Chelsea and Mike for this “magical” opportunity, her new “revolting” friends in the cast, the production team and crew for everything they do behind the scenes, her vocal teacher Kevin, her acting coach Angela, and her family and friends for their love and support!
Hailey is excited to be making her SALT debut in Matilda. Hailey has been performing since the age of six and was most recently seen in Family Stages touring production of The Fabulous Franklin. Hailey has a degree in Musical Theater from West Chester University and also studied drama at The Capital Area School for the Arts. Hailey would like to thank her Nana, Papa, Mother and the rest of her family for their support.
TJ McCarthy (Escapologist Dancer/Big Kid)
TJ is an 8th grader at the Center for Performing and Fine Arts in West Chester. He is thrilled to be performing in his fourth show at SALT, previously in Les Miserable, The Secret Garden, and You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown (Linus). Prior roles include Willy Wonka Jr (Charlie Bucket) and Once Upon a Mattress (Harry) at Fugett Middle School. In late December, 2018, TJ had the pleasure of performing with Hugh Jackman on the NBC morning TODAY show in NYC. During the summer of 2018, TJ was cast in High School Musical in an Off-Broadway production at Theatre Row in New York City. TJ sends special thanks to his family, the Broadway Collective crew, especially Robert Hartwell & Kate Lumpkin, Michael Toolan and the amazing cast and crew here at SALT!
Eloise McComas (Amanda Thripp)
Eloise is thrilled to be flung around by her braids in this fantastic musical! Her recent performing highlights include You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown (Sally Brown), Les Miserables School Edition (Young Cosette), and Shrek Jr. (Young Fiona). She is excited to perform in Sight & Sound's RUTH (Young Ruth) at Lancaster Bible College in January. Eloise is a homeschooled 2nd grader who, when not performing, loves to play piano, draw, write poetry, and craft with random items found around the house. She is so thankful to her private instructors for pouring into her: Miss Chelsea, Mrs. Brigitte, Beka Poppins, Mrs. Rodgers, and Mommy.
Zofia Mecca (Noelle)
Zofia is very excited to do her first show at SALT. Zofia started her theatrical career at the age of 8 playing Diesel in 2017 Footlighters’ production of The Perfect Dog. Since then she was in Gypsy (Newsboy) at Barley Sheaf Players and reprised her role as Diesel at Center Theater in Norristown. This year, she was in Return of the Glass Slipper (Cinderella) in Sugartown Elementary. Zofia enjoys singing, playing the piano and practicing gymnastics, but theater is always her most favorite thing.
Michael Meck (Michael Wormwood, Big Kid, Doctor)
Michael is so excited to return to the SALT stage as one of his dream roles, and with so many of his best friends. Favorite past credits include Titanic (Bellboy), Christmas Cabaret (Child Performer) at SALT, Miracle on 34th Street (Newsboy/Reporter) at Steel River Playhouse and and many more. Michael would like to thank his family for their support, and the production staff for all their hard work. TELLY!!
Emily Peterson Merow (Miss Honey)
Emily is thrilled to be a part of this incredibly fun show, and her 7th SALT production! Emily recently performed on the SALT stage in The Secret Garden (Lily), The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Gargoyle), CATS (Grizabella), and Little Women (Beth March). Other theatre credits include Les Miserables (Cosette), The Apple Tree (Eve, Ella/Passionella), and The Mystery of Edwin Drood (Rosa Budd) at Grove City College. Along with performing on stage, Emily enjoys leading worship at Mission Community Church, teaching voice and piano lessons, and watching West Wing with her beautiful husband! Thanks to Chelsea, Mike, the production staff, and cast: it is a joy to do what I love with people I love. Thanks and love to all Petersons and Merows for their consistent love and support. Special thanks to Robbie Merow: our life together is the greatest earthly gift. All affection, honor, and devotion poured out on the feet of Jesus! Isaiah 43:1
Jackson Ogden (Bruce)
Jackson, a 6th grader at Pierce Middle School, is proud to be performing in his 5th SALT production. Other roles include You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown (Linus), Newsies (Les), Seussical Jr (Jojo), Shrek Jr (Pied Piper), and The Secret Garden (Colin). He has also played Willy Wonka Jr (Charlie) in at WCS. Jackson loves musical theater and a good challenge. He is honored to be part of this production and would like to thank the cast and crew for being so supportive and making this great experience happen.
Abbie Parker (Tammi)
Abbie is excited to be returning to SALT's Mainstage. A fifth grader at Great Valley School District. Abbie was in SALT's You're a Good Man Charlie Brown (Lucy). She also performed in several Stagelight productions including Music Man (Marian), Willy Wonka Kids (Veruca), Aristocats (Scatcat), Cinderella (Gus), and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Ensemble). In addition, Abbie performed in several shows at Music Training Center including her favorite, Seussical (Jojo). Abbie fell in love with theater at age 4 when she played Tinkerbell in a production of Peter Pan. Abbie is grateful to Chelsea, Mike, Lauren and Sheryl for giving her this opportunity. She is thankful for the support of her parents, brother and sister. Abbie hopes you enjoy the show!
Shannon Briding Price (Mrs. Phelps / Ensemble)
Shannon is thrilled to be making her SALT debut! Some of her favorite past performances include A Year With Frog and Toad (Frog) and You Can't Take It With You (Mrs. Kirby), both at Barley Sheaf Players, and Into The Woods (Jack's Mother) at Bravo Theatre Company. Shannon would like to thank the entire SALT family for welcoming her into this amazing production. Just like Mrs. Phelps, Shannon is also a librarian, and is overjoyed to be part of this celebration of reading and storytelling. Thanks to her loving family (David, Anders, Lulu, and mom Donna) for supporting all of her theater endeavors.
Frances Rose Foy (Erica)
Frances is thrilled to be part of the Matilda cast at SALT. Over the summer months, Frances was in Willy Wonka Jr (Willy Wonka) at Footlighters Theatre in Berwyn via UMLY. In addition, she has been in Seussical (ensemble) and Newsies (ensemble). In previous summers, at UMLY, she performed in Alice in Wonderland (ensemble) and Cinderella (ensemble). Her theatre experience began at West Chester Studio for the Performing Arts where she began acting classes at age 5 and participated in a variety of shows at Uptown Knauer Performing Arts Theatre. She would like to thank all of her fine teachers and coaches who have helped her grow.
Wallis Schriver (Big Kid, Nurse)
Wallis is excited to join her first SALT production! Her previous credits include Annie (Ensemble) at The Walnut Street Theatre, Frozen, Jr. (Elsa) at Camp Oneka, The Servant of Two Masters (Brighella) and The Three Musketeers (Rochefort) at The Center for Performing and Fine Arts, Alice In Wonderland (Alice) at The Creative Edge Center for the Arts, as well as various vocal performances, including The Walnut Street Theatre’s annual Gala Concert in 2019. Wallis would like to thank her family, her director Chelsea, Lauren, and the rest of the cast and crew of SALT for giving her this amazing opportunity.
Sophia is 10 years old and in the 5th grade. Sophia has an intense love for singing and dancing and is thrilled to be in her first major SALT Production. Recent credits include Frozen Jr. (Young Elsa) at Revival Productions in July 2019, Miracle on 34th Street at SALT and various roles at SALT’s Summer Stagelight programs. Sophia loves animals, baking, and she is a devoted follower of Jesus.
AJ Tantala Escapologist Singer, Dad 4, Henchman
AJ is enthused to be apart of his 4th production at SALT Performing Arts. His past SALT credits include The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Quasimodo), The Secret Garden (Albert Lennox), You're a Good Man Charlie Brown (Charlie Brown). AJ would like to thank Chelsea and Mike for giving him the opportunity to perform with some of his best friends!
Zagara is 15 and in 10th grade at CPFA in West Chester. Zagara was recently in Frozen Jr. (Elsa) at Revival Productions in Coatesville, and Les Misérable (Ensemble) at SALT. Zagara’s performance credits include being in several school plays at Collegium Charter School including Annie Jr (Annie), Lion King Jr (Rafiki), Hairspray (Little Inez) and Our Town (Howie). Performance highlights for Zagara include singing background for Josh Groban at the Wells Fargo Center November 2018, participating as a contestant in the 2018 and 2019 (top 5) “The Vocalist” competition held by Media Theater as well as being a contestant in the Talent Slam competition at Revival Productions in 2018. Zagara enjoys singing, reading, and being with friends.
Lulu Spinelli (Amanda Thripp)
Lulu is excited to be returning to SALT Theatre for her 5th production! Most recently Les Misérables (Little Cosette), Shrek Jr. (Little Shrek), Suessical Jr. (Little Kangaroo), and The Wizard of Oz (Munchkin). Lulu made her acting debut at age 5 in Winnie the Pooh, Kids! (Piglet) at Facetime Theater. Also at Facetime, Aristocats Kids! (Marie) and 101 Dalmatians Kids! (Cruella deVile). Lulu is 4th grader at PALCS who enjoys making crafts, reading and playing with her little brother Leo. She’d like to give a special thank you to Emily Merow and Mary Jo Springer, the SALT team for the opportunity, and Mom and Dad for their endless support and love!
Violet Tulig (Hortensia)
Violet is thrilled to be a part of her first mainstage production at SALT! She fell in love with theater at the age of 8 when she played Young Simba at her school's production of The Lion King. Now she continues to practice theater as a 5th grader and loves being enrolled in SALT's Stagelight programs. Past credits include Annie (Miss Hannigan) Upper Providence Musical Theater program, Honk Jr. (The Cat) Methacton Community Theater, Suessical Jr. (Gertrude McFuzz) Facetime Theater, Beauty and the Beast (ensemble) Methacton Community Theater Mainstage, and The Lion King, Jr. (Young Simba). Violet would like to thank Lori, Sam, Kristen, Alicia, Chelsea, Mike, and Lauren for all the wonderful instruction and inspiration they have given to her. She also would like to thank the fabulous cast and crew of Matilda the Musical and her family and friends for their continued support!
Zachary Zalis (Mr. Wormwood)
Zachary is thrilled to be making his professional and SALT debut with Matilda. A recent graduate of Fordham University (B.A. Theatre and Communications), Zachary’s favorite past credits include Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead (The Player, Fordham University), Into the Woods (Lucinda, Fordham University), As You Like It (Corin/Hymen, Fordham University), The Mystery of Edwin Drood (Bazzard, Fordham University), and 12 Angry Jurors (Juror #5, Fordham University). Zachary would like to thank the incredible cast, crew, production team, and everyone else who has made this show such a wonderful experience. Much love to his family, friends, teachers, and most especially, his wonderful parents for their constant love and support. Go Birds!
Ashley Zammetti (Big kid/ballroom dancer/Nurse)
Ashley is super excited to be out of chokey and back on the SALT stage! Ashley feels that it's a true MIRACLE to be in such a fun show with such a loving cast! Ashley knows she can be a bit LOUD at times and would like to give a huge thanks to her castmates and the staff of the show for putting up with her being a little bit NAUGHTY! Ashley is so thankful to have the opportunity to spend most of her free time helping with SALT's stagelight programs! If you have a "maggot" of your own you've probably seen her around Stagelight! Finally, Ashley hopes that this show is as magical for you as it is for those involved!
David is so grateful to be cast in his second SALT show! Previous credits include You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown (Linus), Once Upon a Mattress (King Sextimus), Company (Peter), and The Wedding Singer (Ensemble). David also directs shows and teaches classes at West Chester Studio, and has done behind the scenes work, such as Stage Management, Carpentry, and Lightning tech. When he's not working on a show, David loves traveling, computers, and animals. He thanks his parents, his incredible partner Katie, and his four cat babies for all the love and support.