Staff

Legal:
A. Craig Brown, Esq.
Doherty, Wallace, Pillsbury & Murphy, P.C.
60 State Street Northampton, MA 01060


Before joining the Academy of Music Theatre, Executive Director Debra J’Anthony served as the executive director of the Shea Community Theater in Turners Falls, Mass., for sixteen years. During her tenure there, she was awarded the Community Theater Association Back Stage Award and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts State Senate Official Citation. In addition to her work as an arts administrator, Debra taught flute and chamber music at Stoneleigh-Burnham and Eaglebrook schools, and has performed professionally as a musician throughout North America and Europe. Her passion for the arts takes many forms. Debra is a published poet, and is a current advisory board member of the Hampshire Regional Tourism Council, a member of the Paradise City Cultural District Committee, the national planning committee for SWAN (Support Women Artists Now) Day, Association of Performing Arts Presenters, and New England Presenters.


Alison Klejna brings a robust arts administration background to her work as the Academy’s Theater Manager.  While living in the Boston area, she worked with Central Square Theater and its resident companies, The Nora Theatre Company and Underground Railway Theater, in Cambridge, MA, where she served as the organization’s first Manager of Artistic Operations, having previously held the positions of Artistic Administrator for The Nora Theatre Company and Administrative and Development Coordinator for The Nora and Central Square Theater. Alison has also worked as the Event Coordinator at Chamber Theatre Productions in Boston, and for the Ithaca College Department of Cinema and Photography. Immediately prior to joining the Academy staff, she worked as a freelance casting assistant in the film industry. Alison graduated in the first class at the Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter High School and earned a B.A. in Dramatic Literature at Ithaca College and an M.S. in Arts Administration from Boston University.


Prior to his post as the Academy’s Technical Director, Hugh Hall spent two decades in commercial architectural design management, retail store design and display design for Yankee Candle, Lego Systems and other national companies.  Hugh served as a lighting and scenic designer for Amherst Leisure Services productions, Interplayers in Spokane, Washington and as instructor and technical director at the University of Alaska Fairbanks Theatre Department.  He began his career at Alaska Repertory Theatre Company, a LORT B company in Anchorage, Alaska, which took him on tour throughout the state.  He now lives in Belchertown with his wife Maureen O’Neil.


Martha Potyrala, Education Director, joined the Academy six years ago co-directing its Summer Musical Theatre Workshops. Since that time she has co-directed the winter musical theater Academy Youth Productions of Camp Rock, Fame Jr., The Phantom Tollbooth, Jr. and Into the Woods, Jr.  She comes to the Academy through education experiences in Springfield Public Schools and Holyoke Community College. She teaches musical theater dance at Pioneer Valley Ballet, performs with the company, and develops outreach performances for area schools. She earned her B.A. at Curry College and M.Ed. at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.


Matt Silberstein began his career at the University of Hartford. While studying for his B.A in Performing Arts Management, he booked The Hawk’s Nest, Spring Fling, and Lincoln Theater, while also performing and recording with acclaimed musicians. During college and immediately after, Matt worked for Metropolitan Entertainment, where he gained vital box office and production experience working large scale concerts at Liberty State Park, Hammerstein Ballroom, NJPAC, Central Park Summer Stage, and Hartford Civic Center. After moving to the Pioneer Valley in 2002, he worked for Iron Horse Entertainment Group (IHEG) for seven years, where he held the dual roles of Box Office Manager and Talent Buyer. He then began assistant engineering with Justin Pizzoferrato & Mark Alan Miller at Sonelab Recording Studios in Easthampton. Matt joined the Academy of Music Theatre as a front of house associate and soon moved into the Box Office Manager position. In addition to his role at the Academy, Matt continues to work alongside the engineers at Sonelab and play double bass and sing for Salvation Alley String Band.