ARTISTIC DIRECTOR / OWNER
Brittany knows all too well how it feels to be constantly told you are “too much”. Growing up as a child with ADHD and other learning disabilities, she was often referred to as the child no one wanted in their classroom, by teachers and classmates. Brittany would soon learn that God had a place and a plan for her, a place where her voice was heard. When Brittany was about 6 years old, she found a home in the performing arts, which has lead to a career in acting, playwriting, directing, singing, and public speaking. Brittany is passionate about helping other students find their home in the performing arts.
Brittany is an award winning professional actress and has produced and directed over 50 children and young adult productions. She holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Acting and a Master’s Degree in Playwriting. Passion for theatre and teaching drives Brittany to help students reach their goals and shine on stage.
PRODUCTION ASSISTANT & K-5TH IMPROV/ACTING INSTRUCTOR
Sterling Bjerken’s love of musical theatre began when he played the Wolf and Rapunzel’s prince in BLP’s production of Into the Woods during his junior year of high school. Since then he has performed in shows such as The Wiz, Grease, and Elf the Musical, playing the roles of Sonny/Johnny Casino, The Wizard of Oz, and Buddy the Elf. Sterling will be going to Kennesaw State University where he will study Theatre and Performance Study’s and continue to pursue a career in acting. Sterling is incredibly happy and excited to be joining the BLP staff.
TAP & HIP-HOP INSTRUCTOR
Kinsey Bosher is a student at Pope High school. She was in company at Rhythm Dance Center for 8 years are started to peruse her love for theatre at 13. She has previously performed in Elf the Musical and Billy Elliot at City Springs Theatre, A Christmas Tradition at The Strand Theatre, and she was a featured dancer in Footloose at Pope High School. Kinsey is so thankful for this opportunity and can’t wait to help these students grow.
Native Atlantan, Jen Carrozza, has been singing, speaking in public and performing since she was a small child. She has been a full-time professional vocalist since 1990. Jen’s work as a worship leader began with her home church of Dunwoody Baptist Church, in North Atlanta, GA.
Since then she has been in churches all over the southeast. In 1997, she and her husband, John served together for 15 years at North Point Community Church and their various campuses as primary musicians. She was the principal singer for Kidstuf, North Point’s innovative children’s program, and trained other vocalists to be a part of that ministry for 8 years. She has been a recording artist since 1998 and has recorded 4 albums and enjoyed several national release singles for Integrity music and with her jazz band, J-Mood. Jen has worked with many artists including Babbie Mason, Christy Nockles, Todd Fields, Steve Fee, James David Carter and has been a part of conferences or bible studies leading music for Christian teachers: Andy Stanley, Louis Giglio, Esther Burroughs, and Lisa Harper to name a few.
Since 2014, Jen has been on staff for Mt. Bethel UMC, leading their modern service. Jen has taught performing arts curriculum in several student programs and schools, including Cue52, PACS and Legacy Community Academy, and coached other singers for the past 15 years, pouring into the next generation of performing artists.
Grace Chapin graduated from Liberty University and is currently working for both Brittany Leazer Productions and Mt. Bethel Christian Academy as the Middle School Drama Teacher. Growing up she danced, played piano, took voice, and was a member of church choir. Grace loves the opportunity to work with Brittany Leazer Productions to help young actors develop confidence and their theater abilities. After over 3 years and 25 productions with BLP, Grace is excited for each new day with BLP’s wonderful students!
Karli Cuthrell has always loved music and singing and when she was 8 she was introduced to theatre by her sister instantly fell in love. She has performed in shows like Flat Stanley, Alice in Wonderland, Hairspray, Dear Edwina, and Matilda. Her favorite and most influential roles were Cinderella in Into The Woods and Rizzo in BLP’s production of Grease. Karli attends the Savannah College of Art and Design where she studies Film and Television, Creative Writing, and Theatre. Karli is very excited to be a part of BLP working with amazing people while also working towards her career.
ACTING FOR FILM INSTRUCTOR
Started training young actors in 2009 after spending years in Los Angeles, New York and Atlanta working as an actor, director, producer and casting director. Ken’s students work in film, TV and Broadway. Two of his former students have won SAG Awards.
Originally from Atlanta, Ken started in theater in New York and Los Angeles before moving into film and TV. He has won numerous awards as a filmmaker including the Directors Gold Award at the International Family Film Festival for the teen Christmas comedy feature Santa’s Boot Camp. The film was also recognized as Best Family Feature Film at the San Diego Kids International Film Festival and Best Feature Film at the Georgia Latino Film Festival.
He has had 6 films screen at the Cannes Film Festival in France, and Ken was also honored with the Outstanding Achievement Award for his contribution to the film industry in Georgia at the Georgia Film Gala.
As an actor, Ken portrayed memorable characters on Star Trek Enterprise, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Charmed, Alias and the CBS series,The District among others. He has performed in over 50 theater productions in LA, NYC, Orlando and Atlanta where he was also part of 3 different repertory acting companies in LA. As the Artistic director of New Leaf Productions in Atlanta, he directed the world premiere original musical of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory and also directed the Atlanta premieres of major award-winning Broadway shows Death and the Maiden and Talk Radio.
Ken’s students can be seen in Disney’s A Wrinkle in Time, The Hunger Games, Ricky, Nicky, Dicky and Dawn, 12 Years a Slave, Sully, The Walking Dead, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri, Ozark, The Blind Side, Safe Haven, Gray’s Anatomy, Bones The Ballad of Richard Jewel, American Made, The Invisible Man, Dad, Stop Embarrassing Me and many others.
CHOREOGRAPHER & DANCE DEPARTMENT CHAIR
Dena Friderich grew up in Evansville, Indiana, where she trained in ballet, jazz, tap, hip hop, acrobatics, and musical theatre. While completing her Bachelors of Science in Chemical Engineering at Purdue University, Dena earned a minor in dance, performing with the Purdue Repertory Dance Company (a Graham-based Modern Company). While at Purdue she also performed on the basketball court and football field as a member of the Purdue Dance Team. She began teaching with the Universal Dance Association while in college. She continued teaching ballet technique at Perimeter School of Ballet. Before moving overseas to serve as a missionary for four years in Budapest, Hungary, Dena was member of the Ballet Company, Praise in Motion, based in Lilburn, Georgia. More than anything, she enjoys teaching, where she gets the opportunity to build relationship and nurture character in young dancers. Since 2014 Dena has taught Jazz, Hip Hop, Acrobatics and Musical Theater Dance at Tolbert-Yilmaz School of Dance in Roswell. Dena has also choreographed musicals at Johnson Ferry Christian Academy (Elementary, Middle and High School levels), Crabapple Middle School, and Brittany Leazer Productions. (Shows include Junglebook, Aristocats, Alice in Wonderland, Winne the Pooh, Annie, Peter Pan, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, The Addams Family, Beauty and the Beast, High School Musical, High School Musical 2, Aladdin, Guys and Dolls, and Newsies.) Dena and her husband have two daughters and a son. Their family continues to travel to Hungary for short-term mission trips each summer, where she helps lead dance camps.
K-5TH DANCE INSTRUCTOR
Elise Friderich is a student at Johnson Ferry Christian Academy. She studied at Tolbert-Yilmaz School of Dance in Roswell for 8 years, was a member of the Roswell Dance Theater Ballet Company for 4 years and was a dancer for RDT’s pre-professional company for 2 years. She has performed in Roswell Dance Theater’s Nutcracker for 6 years playing the roles of Waltz of the Flowers, Pastry Chef, Candy Cane, Jester, Mouse, Dragon, Gingerbread Girl, Soldier, Party Girl, and Snow Flurry. Elise has also performed in Johnson Ferry Christian Academy’s productions of Peter Pan Jr. as Tiger Lily and Annie Jr. as Miss Hannigan. She is very grateful to join Brittany Leazer’s company and teach young performers.
COLLEGE PREPARATION COORDINATOR
Amanda Fallon Smith
Amanda is a New York City based actress originally from Tampa, Florida. She is a graduate of the Carnegie Mellon University School of Drama with a BFA in Musical Theatre and a proud member of Actor’s Equity. She was also fortunate to spend a year as Miss Pennsylvania 2014, winning the talent award at the annual Miss America Pageant. Select regional credits include The Crucible, The Cake, Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, The Game’s Afoot, among others. She is currently playing Nessarose in the National Tour of Wicked.
Amanda is incredibly excited to bring her experience in auditioning, performing, and teaching to Brittany Leazer Productions. She prides herself on working with the unique strengths of each of her students to perform at their highest potential, achieving the highest awards at competitions, desired roles in productions and acceptances into the performing arts colleges of their choice. Sharing her love of performing is her passion and she’s looking forward to working with BLP!
Emily spent her growing up years in Indiana in a family of six. For as long as she can remember, her parents have been very active. So she didn’t know any other way to live than to stay active. She was always in some sport growing up. Soccer, gymnastics, softball, swimming, volleyball, you name it! (Just don’t name basketball). When she was 16 and able to step into an actual group fitness class, she went in with her mom and never looked back! That was almost 25 years ago!
She attended Baylor University, and that is when she realized her love for kickboxing…her poor neighbors in the apartment below! She met her husband (who is also very active) in college, married him after they graduated, and they moved to TX.
In 2012, she decided to become certified to teach group fitness herself. The last couple of years before they moved to GA, she helped teach hip hop classes with her sister’s company, His Hop (hip hop for Jesus!). They moved to Georgia in 2017, and she has continued to teach all different kinds of group fitness classes at Lifetime Fitness.
Jordan has been singing almost as long as she’s been breathing—or at least that’s what her mother says! Her first solo was “Hark the Herald Angels Sing.” Yes, she was two, and yes, it was in the back seat of her mother’s red VW Jetta, but it was a solo nonetheless!
Throughout her adult life, Jordan is grateful to have had the unique privilege of using her voice to make a living. She has worked as a session vocalist for companies like Coca-Cola, Cartoon Network, and Turner Broadcasting System and has lent her voice to countless recording projects as a background vocalist. She is a songwriter who has released two projects of her own, and she continues to write and record worship music for the Church. Her true love is leading church congregations in worship of the living God.
Jordan began work as a vocal coach in 2008 and quickly found it to be one of the most fulfilling and fun things she has ever done. She has a passion for helping singers, both young and not-so-young, discover their God-given potential by teaching them proper technique and helping them unlock their capabilities as vocalists.
Dana, originally from Norwich, VT , began her dance training with Joseph and Victoria DeChiazza, professors of Dance at Dartmouth College. After eleven years of studying Ballet (French Technique), Modern (Limon Based) and Jazz (Jack Cole Based), Dana went on to Adelphi University to receive her B.F. A. in Dance. She trained with Norman Walker, Carmen de Lavallade, Loren Hightower, Rochelle Zide-Booth and Regina Larkin. After graduation, she attended NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts to earn an M.F.A. in Dance. She performed works by Gus Solomons Jr., Mark Morris, and Ann Carlson and trained with Jenny Way (Twyla Tharp), Gwen Welliver (Doug Varone), Jim Martin, Phyllis Lamhut (Nikolais), Mark Haim, Jackie Villamil, Deborah Jowitt and Kaye Cummings. During her second year at NYU, Dana joined the Joyce Trisler Danscompany, performing Trisler works in NYC and multiple venues in the Northeast. After graduating, she performed with Cherylyn Lavagnino, Imago Dance Theatre, and formed her own collaborative company called Ground Floor Dance.
Since moving to Atlanta, Dana has taught Ballet and Modern technique to dancers of all ages. She has taught at the Georgia Academy of Dance, , The Studio Atlanta Dance, Academy of Ballet in Norcross and Bravo Dance Centre and was a part time professor of dance at Kennesaw State University from 2011 to 2019. Dana serves as Professional Development Manager for Dance Canvas, an Atlanta based company that promotes and produces choreographers. During Dance Canvas’ Summer Intensive, Dana teaches Ballet and Modern technique and Choreography. She has produced her own choreography in the Atlanta area since 2003.
Claire Young began her dance training at the age of five at the Tolbert Yilmaz School of Dance in Roswell, Georgia. She joined their pre-professional company in 2002 and performed principal roles including the Fairy Godmother in Sleeping Beauty,the Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker,and Aurora in Sleeping Beauty. She trained with Atlanta Ballet, Houston Ballet, Joffery Ballet, The Walnut Hill School, and Kaatzbaan. She went on to earn a BFA with Distinction in Ballet Performance from the University of Oklahoma.
At Oklahoma, Claire performed principal roles with the University’s ballet company the Oklahoma Festival Ballet. Her favorite roles included: The Dew Drop Fairy in The Nutcracker, The Sylph from the Sylph and Scotsman pas de deux form Graduation Ball, The “Girl in Blue” from Mary Margaret Holt’s Carmina Burana, And the Lilac Fairy from The Sleeping Beauty. She also enjoyed touring Mrs. Holt’s Rhapsody in Blue in Shanghai, China.
Claire started her professional career with the Columbia City Ballet under the direction of William Starrett where she danced in Dracula, The Nutcracker, The Sleeping Beauty, The Little Mermaid, and Romeo and Juliet. She then went on to dance with the Montgomery Ballet under the direction of Darrin McIntyre where she performed many soloist roles including: Big Swans in Swan Lake, Little Bo Peep in The Nutcracker, and the soloist in Darrin McIntyre’s Liberty Bell. She then joined the Chattanooga Ballet as a principal dancer and was rehearsal mistress for the Corps de Ballet. Her favorite roles she performed were: The Sugar Plum Fairy, The Nutcracker, Raymonda, Raymonda, the Principal Slyph, Les Sylphides, and the principal dancer in Gabrialla Gambino’s Optimist.
Claire is certified in Progressing Ballet Technique and has been teaching ballet and pointe technique since 2010 and is excited to share her love of this art form with the next generation of dancers.
ASSISTANT DIRECTOR FOR JUNIOR PRODUCTIONS
A few things about me; I love Jesus, reading, performing, movies, wearing black, family, friends, and sit-coms without laugh tracks. I have had a passion for performance since I was a child. Ever since I performed in my first musical, I knew that I wanted to be involved with acting, singing, and dancing for the rest of my life. Because I was involved in a leadership program in high school where I acted as a teacher’s assistant, team leader, and spiritual mentor, I developed a love for teaching and acting as a mentor.
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We are devoted to developing young actors filled with courage, confidence, and passion in a Christ-centered environment. Students participating in the program will learn to reach within themselves to affect and move audiences.
2863 Johnson Ferry Rd.
Marietta, GA 30062
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