Community Programs and Education 

Center Stage's education programs integrate theater into the lives of nearly 10,000 Maryland students each season, inspiring young imaginations through programs that cultivate creative and intellectual potential, and developing a practical understanding of the arts. 

Our programs inform and inspire tomorrow’s audiences, enriching individual lives and ensuring a strong future for the arts in our communities. Participating in meaningful cultural activities as a regular part of a well-rounded educational experience helps to develop empowered creative thinkers who are better equipped to thrive in a global marketplace of diverse and rapidly changing ideas. As public schools struggle to provide arts exposure in a difficult economic climate, community-based programs like Center Stage's become even more essential.

Click here for exciting news about student achievement as a result of our involvement.

Rosiland M. Cauthen, Director of Community Programs & Education, gears her focus at Center Stage towards the student matinee program; the after-school teen ensemble, Encounter; and conducting workshops in local area schools. She is a graduate of the MFA in Theatre program at Towson University. In addition to her work at Center Stage, Rosiland also teaches theater courses as an adjunct professor at Towson University. Her classes include Cultural Diversity in American Theatre, African-American Theatre, and Women in American Theatre. Before coming to Baltimore, Rosiland was a corps member of Teach For America, a national corps of young innovative teachers working in the nation’s underserved schools. She is a mother of two beautiful daughters, Nzingha and Asantewaa. Rosiland loves to read, write poetry, dance, and spend time with her family.


Kristina Szilagyi, Education Coordinator, is excited to return to Center Stage this season. Originally from West Virginia, Kristina earned a BA in Theatre Studies and Comparative Literature from Wellesley College and studied at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. At Wellesley, she was a member of the Shakespeare Society and a production assistant in the theater department. Locally, she has performed, taught, and written for The Baltimore Shakespeare Factory. She has worked on numerous Boston-based productions, including New Repertory Theater’s educational tour and GAN-e-meed Theatre Project’s inaugural production. While with GAN-e-meed, Kristina served as a member of the Board of Directors for the 2010-2011 Season, where she focused on providing opportunities for playwrights. Her work as a playwright and educator has continued as a guest artist at the Maryland Institute College of Art.


Joshua Thomas is the Community Programs & Education Fellow. He graduated in May 2012 with a BFA in Theatre Performance from the University of Southern Mississippi. He is passionate about the community, and is excited about being a part of the Center Stage team. 


Andrew Stromyer is the new Community Programs & Education intern. He graduated in December 2013 with a BS in Theater Studies from Towson University. Working with the community through theater (especially in his hometown of Baltimore) has always been a passion of Andrew’s. He is excited about rejoining the Center Stage crew after working as a part-time intern with the Encounter program last season.

Maria Broom is nationally known as an actress for her recurring roles in HBO’s The Wire and The Corner but is also a storyteller and dancer with more than forty years of performing and teaching in the US and across the globe. She is a Fulbright scholar and former news reporter for the ABC affiliates in Miami and Baltimore. Currently, she is on the theater faculty at the Baltimore School for the Arts. A native of Baltimore, Maria has received many awards and honors including the Eubie Blake Award, the Sarah’s Circle Award and the 2004 Governor’s Arts Award for Individual Artist. In 2007, she was named, Artist of the Year by Young Audiences of Maryland, Inc.

Sean Elias is an actor, director, educator and coach. Sean has worked as a professional actor in equity theatres across the northeast, as a director at the historic Theatre 80 and the Kaufman Music Center in NYC, as an educator in public and private schools and community programs and has served as a coach to organizational leaders and educational institutions. As an actor, Sean most recently performed Footloose with The Eagle Theatre. Past professional credits include equity summer seasons at The Forestburgh Playhouse and The Weathervane Theatre. Sean received a Perry Award nomination for his performance as Joseph in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and has performed in cabarets throughout NYC including the legendary Don't Tell Mama's. Upcoming, Sean will perform with Baltimore's Iron Crow Theatre and following with The Baltimore Shakespeare Factory. As an educator, all of Sean's lessons aim to promote an increase in the learners understanding of self and socio-political context. Sean holds a B.F.A. in Musical Theatre Performance from the University of the Arts and a M.A. in Theatre Education from Emerson College.

Rich Espey’s plays have been produced throughout the United States. Recent highlights include Rice Futures at the 2010 Source Festival and Three Andys produced by Single Carrot Theatre at the Baltimore Museum of Art. His award-winning play Hope’s Arbor was produced by Gallery Players in New York City in June, 2008.  Rich is a two time winner of the Carol Weinberg Award for best play at the Baltimore Playwrights Festival. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild, a member of DC’s Playwrights Gymnasium, has served as Chair of the Baltimore Playwrights Festival and is currently the President of the Board of Single Carrot Theatre. Rich proudly teaches science at The Park School of Baltimore. Check out samples of his work and a production history at

Susanna Gellert, Artistic Producer, joined Center Stage in January 2012. Prior to arriving in Baltimore, she worked as a freelance director in New York while also receiving a Masters in Theater Studies from the English Department of Columbia University. Recent directing projects include Mud Blue Sky by Marisa Wegrzyn and the world premiere event of My America at Center Stage, Bar Joke by Sam Allingham (Old American Can Factory), Open the Dark Door by David Nugent (New York Music Theater Festival), Visiting Day by Andy Bragen (Sewanee Writers’ Conference), Fugue States (PS 122), You Can’t Take It With You (University of Rochester), The Boss in the Satin Kimono (New York International Fringe Festival), The Duchess of Malfi (FSU/Asolo Conservatory), and Marat/Sade (The Fisher Center for Performing Arts at Bard College). Additional New York directing credits include The Lacy Project (Soho Think Tank’s Ice Factory ’07, the Ohio Theater), adaptations of Tamburlaine the Great and Valkyrie (Target Margin Theater), Match and L’Interieur (American Living Room), as well as workshops at the Lark, EST, and NYU. Susanna has taught at the University of Rochester, Bard College, Columbia University, and NYU. She was the founding Artistic Director of Chicago’s I-80 Drama Co. and an associate artist at Target Margin Theater. Currently, she is a member of Wingspace, a theatrical design collective, and the Women’s Project Directors’ Lab. A recipient of SDCF’s Sir John Gielgud Fellowship and the Julian Milton Kaufman Memorial Prize, Susanna is a graduate of Yale School of Drama and The University of Chicago.

The Jokesters. Steve Bauer and Marianne Wittelsberger are professionally trained in the fine arts of Mime, Clowning, Magic, Makeup and Costume Design. The Jokesters have been performing for audiences all over the United States with their Live Show since 1983, including 8 Command Performances at the White House for Presidents Reagan, Bush and Clinton and a Royal Command Performance for the King of Saudi Arabia.

CJay Philip made her Broadway debut in Big: The Musical (based on the Tom Hanks film). She was in the Broadway productions of Street Corner Symphony and Hairspray, serving as Dance Captain for the Broadway and touring companies. CJay has toured as Lorrell in Dreamgirls and Paulette in Legally Blonde. She is also an accomplished songwriter and playwright with a sold out European run of her hip-hop adaptation of Carmen. Her one-woman show Bus Trippin’ is both a hilarious and touching tour de force that illuminates the range and depth of her acting abilities. CJay is currently the artistic director of Dance & Bmore, a Baltimore based contemporary dance company that serves children by engaging entire families through dance.

D. Wambui Richardson is a former Center Stage intern now professional artist, Wambui is proud to return to this theatre. Away from Center Stage he’s directed at every level from academic theater to works off-Broadway. Currently, Wambui is the artist-in-residence for Coppin State University where he has been commissioned to adapt and direct new works. Wambui is an alumnus of Dillard University, The New York Film Academy, Brooklyn College and the prestigious Drama League.

Oran Sandel has been a working theater artist in the Washington area since 1975. He performed at New Playwright’s Theater, Back Alley Theater, The Harlequin Dinner Theater, Cedar Knoll Dinner Theater, Ford’s Theater and several others before landing at Arena’s Living Stage Theater Company, where he spent the next twenty-three years. Having left his position as Artistic Director there in 2001, he is now working as a freelance consultant, teacher, writer, director, and performer. At present his teaching venues include the Shakespeare Theater, The Smithsonian Associates, Center Stage, Sitar Arts Center, Theatre Lab, and Creative Cauldron.

Susan Stroupe is an interdisciplinary theater artist based in Baltimore, MD. She has worked as a theater and writing teacher of adults with development disabilities in Albuquerque, NM and part of the experimental ensemble In Strange Company; as a touring puppeteer for Das Puppenspiel Puppet Company and more recently in the development process of Lee Breuer’s La Divina Caricatura, and as an actor in dozens of shows including The Laramie Project, The Tempest, Africa, Aloha Say the Pretty Girls, The Oresteia: Live!, 365 Days/365 Plays, The Vagina Monologues, Ping Chong’s Undesirable Elements (Albuquerque), Vodka, Fucking, and Television, Martial Arts (as part of Towson University’s New Russian Drama Season), and Thr3e Zisters. As a writer she has worked in ensemble writing and devising, often for non-traditional spaces, including recently 3 Ways to Leave Baltimore, performed in an attic, as part of the international Home Theater Festival. She also often explores classical and religious texts, including her masters thesis production at Towson University, The Book of Lilith/The Gospel of Eve. She also served as the Associate Director for The Center for International Theatre Development, managing international travel projects with theater artists from across the country, going multiple times to Russia, Hungary, and Bulgaria. Susan holds a BA from Macalester College and an MFA in Theatre from Towson University.


Ann Turiano is a teaching artist, actor, and dramaturg from Pittsburgh, PA. She has taught playwriting, acting, and improvisation for organizations such as City Theatre, Compass Rose Theatre, Drama Learning Center, and Creative Kids. As an actor, she has performed with Fells Point Corner Theatre, Spotlighters, The Strand, and Vagabond Players. She is a proud company member of the Baltimore Shakespeare Factory. Ann holds a BA in Acting from the Conservatory of Performing Arts at Point Park University and an MA in Advanced Theatre Practice: Dramaturgy from the Central School of Speech and Drama.

Center Stage was asked to participate and perform on the Arts Alive stage during the sixth Annual B’More Healthy Expo, on Saturday, February 28 at the Baltimore Convention Center. More »
With a new year comes many new performances for the Community Programs & Education Department and their many partners. MLK Day (January 19) brought several youth groups—and a sold-out-crowd—together for an inspiring performance on the theme “From Selma to Ferguson.” Performers included Center Stage’s own Encounter, Baltimore City Youth Poetry Team, ConneXions, School for the Arts, Muse 360, and host Femi the DriFish. This marked the fourth consecutive year Center Stage honored Dr. King on the MLK Holiday. More »
Center Stage staff recently developed a new publication highlighting the extensive work of the Education & Community Programs Department. Find it here: More »
The Samaritan Women, a Baltimore-based organization that helps women who have been victims of human trafficking, now offers creative writing, improv workshops, and visits to Center Stage as part of a new partnership with the Theater. Every Thursday afternoon, Center Stage's Rosiland Cauthen and Kristina Szilagyi lead the hour-long sessions. More »
The Leadership U[niversity], Continuing Education Grant is for mid-career professionals to allow them to study and learn in an area of interest. The goal of this program is to “strengthen the field by developing the individuals who are the core and future of theater.”  More »
Some teaching artists at Center Stage think so. Center Stage staff and actors from the current production of Amadeus recently visited a Boys Latin Upper School Acting class to provide some background on the life and times of Mozart, the Kanye West, Prince, or even Lady Gaga of that time.  More »
Community Programs & Education at Center Stage and the Baltimore Leadership School for Young Women (BLSYW) will be entering a new partnership this season. BLSYW, an all-girls Baltimore City Public Middle and High School in Mt. Vernon, is an innovative Charter school that has experienced growth and success over the past five years. More »
Eighth grader Chase Andre submitted a play to the 2014 Young Playwrights Festival, and his play has been selected by the Kennedy Center’s VSA Playwright Discovery Competition as a Junior Division Winner. Chase worked with Center Stage teaching artist Susan Stroupe, who led a YPF residency at Jemicy School last season.  More »
Education Coordinator Kristina Szilagyi is teaching a Masterclass in Acting this fall at Notre Dame University of Maryland. She describes the class: “Over the course of five sessions, we will dive into the Shakespeare canon, exploring great roles for women.  More »
The official Amadeus Study Guide is now available as a resource to teachers, parents and students. Center Stage study guides include articles geared toward students that help orient them to the world of the play.  More »

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