Theatre and Dance
Alumni of the Department of Theatre and DanceThe Department of Theatre and Dance has a long and cherished history at Western Illinois. We value our alumni and encourage you to stay in touch with the department.
Graduated in 2009 - MFA (Acting)
Melody Betts is currently playing the mother Abbess in the National Tour of THE SOUND OF MUSIC. She was the Partner of an Irene Ryan recipient, and after performing at the Kennedy Center in 2007 for the Irene Ryan Nationals in Washington, DC she has gone on to have a substantial career with performances at the Milwaukee Rep, the marriott Theatre in Lincolnshire, the Goodman Theatre, and many more.
Graduated in 2012 - MFA (Acting)
Andrew Behling is a Chicago based AEA and SAG-AFTRA actor, director, and educator. He works as an Adjunct Theatre Faculty Member at Elmhurst College, and has worked at theatres such as Quest Theatre, Red House Theatre, First Folio Theatre, and more.
Graduated in 2013 - MFA (Acting)
Kody C. Jones is the Education Director at Florida Repertory Theare, and recently toured the one-person show BUYER AND CELLAR. He has acted and directed professionally in Chicago and the Midwest for the past ten years, and served as the Artistic Director for Shawnee Summer Theatre in Indiana, and The Stage in North Dakota. He also served as Resident Artist for Flint Youth Theatre, Arts for All, Lil Buds Theatre, and the American Theatre Company. Kody was a 2011 Irene Ryan Regional Finalist Partner.
Graduated in 2010 - BFA (Musical Theatre)
Colleen Johnson has performed as Tzeitel in The National Tour of FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, and won the Broadway World Denver Award for her role as the nanny in MARY POPPINS at Midtown Arts Center in Fort Collins, Colorado. She has performed extensively at The Little Theatre on the Square, as well as many other theatres across the country. Colleen was an Irene Ryan nominee while working on her BFA here at WIU.
Graduated in 2009 - MFA (Acting) Sara Pavlak McGuire is a theatre professional based in Chicago. Along with her work as an actor, she is also the managing and casting director of Chicago based: AstonRep Theatre Company. Sara's acting projects in Chicago include, Time Stands Still, Hamlet, Les Liaisons Dangereuses, The Women of Lockerbie, A Walk in the Woods, Steel Magnolias, The Water's Edge, among others. Regional credits include A Streetcar Named Desire and Much Ado About Nothing among others. In 2011 Sara was awarded Chicago's Joseph Jefferson "Jeff" award for outstanding supporting actress for her work as Agnes in Agnes of God.
Graduated in 2013 - MFA (Acting)
Dallas Milholland has toured with the National Players, America's longest-running touring company in the roles of Ariel in THE TEMPEST, Rosalind in AS YOU LIKE IT, and Miss Maude in TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD. She now acts extensively in the DC area at theatres such as Unexpected Stage Company, the DC Sources Festival, and more. Dallas was an Irene Ryan nominee while working on her MFA here at WIU.
Graduated in 2013 - MFA (Design)
Will James Stacey is the Technical Director at Southeastern Oklahoma State University. He has worked as a lighting, scenic, costume designer, and graphic artist for a variety of productions across the country. Several of his credits includes, Hair, Next to Normal, Carousel, Chicago, All My Sons, Fences, and many more. Will has part of the winning Design Storm team at KCACTF in 2012.