MFA Acting Cohort

Katie Clemons

Age Range: 25 – 35

Roles Comfortable playing: Open to any role – though if writing an LGBTQA+ character, I believe that should go to someone in the LGBTQA+ community. 

Demographic: White, Greek Cypriot, Irish. 

Katherine Clemons was born and raised in Greenville, SC. Katherine went to Ball State University for her undergrad in Theatre Studies and has worked in the theatre industry in multiple capacities such as educator, performer, marketing manager, and house manager. Katherine is married to her wonderful husband, Jacob, and recently had her first child, Avery, a boy, in April 2022. She is a dog mom to two pups, Koda and Kingsley. Katherine loves to read, bake, and watch movies. Katherine is working towards her MFA so that she may pursue a career as a professor and intimacy director.  

Christopher Eastland

Age Range: 30-40

Roles Comfortable Playing: Open to most roles. Most comfortable in cis, Latinx/white roles.

Demographic: Latinx (passing)

I was born and raised in Texas. I have a BFA in performance from Baylor University and an MA in theatre from BGSU. I have taught middle school and high school theatre. I’ve also worked as an actor, scenic carpenter, technical director, and producer. I took a little time away from theatre for about 3 years in Philadelphia while working at a running store and focusing on athleticism and spending more time outdoors. My wife and I have been married for almost 8 years. She is a stage manager and is currently on tour. We spend time together when we can. In addition to focusing on acting and my process at MSU, I am also devoting time to learning clowning and solo performance. I believe that theatre should be affordable, challenging, and entertaining. 

Mona Eldahshoury

Age range: 20 – 35

Comfortable playing all roles, any gender, ethnic or racial preferences.

I do wear a hijab (veil) and cover my hair

Mona Eldahshoury is a Muslim North African American who is looking to play acting roles that are both powerful and impactful. Although Mona grew up in the U.S., her adult life was all spent in the United Arab Emirates where she worked as a Youth Theatre Instructor at Berklee Abu Dhabi. Mona believes that theatre is a profession understood by all, regardless of race, religion, or class. While acting, she tries to be as free and honest as possible with every role she gets. Mona has been seen on MSU stages in the productions of The Penelopiad, Whirligig, and Hit the Wall.  and is very excited to continue her MFA in Acting at MSU and hopes to continue to grow as an actor, educator, and a theatre practitioner. 

Stefon Funderburke

Age range: Late teens – Early 30s

Type of roles comfortable playing; Black, Gay, Bi, Gender fluid, drag queens, race not specified

Hi, my name is Stefon Funderburke! I’m from the small town of Sharon, PA, youngest of 9 children, but only really grew up with 2 of my sisters. I’m very passionate about telling stories that black and queer people can especially relate too. I’m a Child at heart; I love to play and laugh! I’m a drag queen and obsessed with Beyonce! With a BFA in musical theater I’m an actor, singer, dancer. I love music and sing everything from R&B to Rock to classical! I love hanging out with friends and my cat! I’ve performed for a lot of children’s theaters, at amusement parks and I’ve done Shakespeare as well! I love performing in theater that is larger than life but love intimate realism as well.

Ural Grant

Age range: Late teens – Early 30s

Roles comfortable playing: male, gender fluid, heterosexual or queer

Ural Grant is an award-winning theater artist and educator. He has toured across the tri-state area in numerous shows geared towards young audiences and is particularly passionate about community engagement and arts education. Ural has led workshops on nonviolence, peer pressure, and communication through Tennessee Shakespeare Company’s Romeo and Juliet Project. Through a leadership fellowship with New York City Children’s Theater, he is currently developing an arts education program that uses devised theater as a tool to help empower and free young African American males to tell their stories and construct their identities.  Ural strives to bring joy and ignite positive, impactful experiences for young people in his community.

Kim Seabright Martin

Age Range: Late teens – Early 30s

Roles comfortable playing: Any

I am only 5’0 tall

I grew up as a navy brat to a fighter pilot and lived all over the US and Europe before settling in NE Ohio when I was 10 years old. I went to The Ohio State University as a 4th generation Buckeye (a fact which I hide since my time at MSU.) Unfortunately, the biggest event that happened to me in college was a head injury that occurred in my 3rd year, resulting in 2 years of recovery. After graduating, I found myself somehow working in life insurance and annuity sales for 3 years before quitting it all to work full-time as an actor back in Cleveland. When the pandemic hit, I lost my job, did URTA auditions and am now honored to be at MSU getting my MFA in acting, living with my senior rescue dog named Boomer. 

Jacob Squire

Jacob Squire

Age range: 25 – 35

Roles you are comfortable playing: I am a cisgendered white straight male and feel most comfortable portraying these roles.

Demographics:  French and Mexican descent. I come from a religious background.

I am father of two and half year old boy and a husband to a Texas girl. I grew up in a very conservative Utah family but with a family full of radicals and boundary pushers. Being the youngest this made me the “last” hope for my parents to do things “right”. This had a large impact on my life and created a problem with perfectionism. I love to laugh and make others laugh. I cope with humor in awkward times or sad times. I’m very much an introvert who forces himself to be extroverted.

Oscar Quiroz

Oscar Rodriguez Quiroz

Age range: Late Teens – Early 30s

Roles comfortable playing: Any

Oscar Quiroz is an actor from Tegucigalpa, Honduras. He initially trained in the National School of Dramatic Art of Honduras where he served as a teacher for many years. He holds a BFA in theatre from the University of Guadalajara and a diploma in voice studies from CEUVOZ (Mexico). Previous professional credits include: Trap for a lonely manDinner for SchmucksMidsummer Night’s Dream, Lucky Peter’s Journey and many more productions with Honduran theatre company Teatro Memorias. He recently appeared in MSUs productions of The Penelopiad and Hit the Wall.

MFA Designers

Gaby Castillo

Gabriela (Gaby) Castillo is an emerging scenic designer experienced in various scenic arts. Gaby attributes her passion for theatre to being an artist for much of her life, and her theatre making skills lie in painting, sculpting, and found object innovation. She has been a prop artisan, model builder, scenic painter, and carpenter. Her approach to scenic design interprets the location as an additional character to enforce the story being told onstage, and she enjoys exploring how this can benefit each production she works on.

Lilian Meyers

Lilian (Lili) Meyers is a lighting designer and electrician currently pursuing her MFA in theatrical design at Michigan State University. She has undergraduate degrees in both Technical Theatre and Theatre Education from Ball State University. Though Lilian still loves and advocates for theatre for young audiences, she found a stronger passion for storytelling with light. Lilian has always been drawn to emotional storytelling in theatre, and finds that the color, texture, and intensity of a light can tell us so much about a character’s feelings and internal battles. She loves getting to create an abstract feeling that audiences and actors can all connect with.

Thalia Pearce