Music Theatre - Performance Faculty Profiles

Christopher Coyea

Christopher Coyea received his Honours Bachelor of Music Degree from Wilfrid Laurier University and did post-graduate work in Opera Performance. Chris has established a well-deserved international artistic reputation as a performer in opera and in concert and was an award winner in the prestigious Lauritz Melchior Heldentenor Competition in New York City. As a member of the Canadian Opera Company Ensemble, he has appeared in numerous productions, including Salome, Tristan und Isolde, Queen of Spades, Carmen, Dialogues of the Carmelites, Wozzeck, La Cenerentola, Andrea Chenier, Adriana Lecouvreur, Amahl and the Night Visitors and The Tales of Hoffmann. After leaving the Ensemble, he performed with the Toronto, Winnipeg, Victoria and Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Orchestras, as well as Orchestra London and the Hamilton Philharmonic. He has sung in the company of such singers as Dame Joan Sutherland, Placido Domingo, Carol Vaness, Dolores Ziegler, Ben Hepner and Richard Margison, to name but a few.

Janet Venn Jackson

Ms. Venn-Jackson has enjoyed a very successful and varied career in the performing arts for the past 40 years. Her early days as a dancer/performer for CBC Variety, Global TV, ACTRA Awards, Juno Awards and over 50 other professional gigs reflect her success as a dancer.

Her career then transitioned into teaching and choreography, again attaining great acclaim. She ran her own successful competitive dance studio for 28 years, developing many national champions and dance professionals, many of whom continue to have impactful, professional careers in the industry today.

Choreographically, she has worked with major corporations including Mattel Toys, Quaker Oats and choreographed the opening routine for a NFL game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Buffalo Bills.

Janet is widely regarded as one of the top dance educators in Canada, acting as the Principal of the ADAPT Teachers Training School, which has turned out hundreds of skilled, certified jazz and tap teachers across Canada. She has also choreographed many musicals, including 42nd Street, Anything Goes, Les Miserables and Crazy For You for St. Lawrence College.

Ms Venn-Jackson is a life-long learner and is now training in Latin Dance with a world-renowned coach and has recently been awarded a Canadian National Title.


Patrick Burwell

Patrick is a proud member of CAEA, AFM, and ACTRA, and has enjoyed a successful career as an actor, director, musical director, arranger, producer and writer at theatres from Victoria to Charlottetown in more than 90 productions.

As a director, musical director and arranger, his credits include the Dora nominated original Canadian musical hit Top Gun! The Musical (Factory Theatre), The Jungle

Book, La Cage Aux Folles, Elf: The Musical (Canadian premiere), Legally Blonde (Neptune Theatre), Leader of the Pack, Swing! (Drayton Entertainment), Little Shop of Horrors, (Sudbury Theatre Centre), Emily (TIFT), over twenty shows as resident musical director for Norwegian Cruise Lines (including co- productions with Cameron Mackintosh and Andrew Lloyd Webber), and seven productions of Forever Plaid.

As an actor, Patrick has played leading roles in 2 Pianos, 4 Hands (Richard), Forever Plaid (Frankie), I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change (Man 1), Into the Woods (Cinderella’s Prince), Billy Bishop Goes to War (Narrator), Baby (Danny), The Buddy Holly Story (Norman Petty), as well as touring internationally with industrial shows and cruise lines.

Patrick has written and arranged new works for both cabaret (over 25 shows) and at the Toronto Fringe in addition to many industrial shows for corporate clients.

After joining St. Lawrence College as a full-time professor in 2013, his journey of lifelong learning continued with the completion of a Master of Education in 2017 (with a focus on 21st century teaching and learning) and a certificate in Adult Learning in 2019.

Kyle Blair

Kyle Blair (he/him) has been working as a professional theatre artist for 25 years. His credits include 21 seasons between the Stratford and Shaw festivals. Roles at Stratford include Frederic (Pirates of Penzance), Lucentio (Taming of the Shrew), Will Parker (Oklahoma!), Billy Lawlor (42nd Street), and Jack (Into the Woods). Roles at Shaw include Octavius (Man and Superman), Ragueneau (Cyrano de Bergerac), The Captain (Androcles and the Lion), Oscar (Sweet Charity), Pirelli (Sweeney Todd), and Jim (Holiday Inn). Toronto credits include Crow’s Theatre (Pierre Laporte in Red Velvet), Musical Stage Company (John in John & Jen and Robbie in A Man of No Importance), Young People’s Theatre (Bert in Mary Poppins), and Ross Petty Productions (The Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz). Other appearances include The National Arts Centre, Manitoba Theatre Centre, Neptune Theatre, Grand Theatre, Theatre Aquarius, Talk is Free Theatre, and Drayton Entertainment. Kyle is a graduate of the Stratford Festival’s Birmingham Conservatory and holds an MA (University of Guelph) and a BFA (University of Windsor). Kyle is the recipient of a Merritt Award (Best Actor) for his portrayal of Billy in Billy Bishop Goes to War, the Maureen Forrester and Dora Mavor Moore awards from the Stratford Festival, and the Odyssey Award (Notable Career Achievement) from the University of Windsor.

Erin Puttee

Erin Puttee is a music educator, voice teacher, and vocal coach. She holds a Bachelor of Music in Voice Performance and a Master of Arts in Musicology from the University of Ottawa. To augment her classical training, Erin has pursued further study of vocal pedagogy for Contemporary Commercial Music styles--most notably, Somatic Voicework™ The LoVetri Method, developed by voice pedagogue Jeanie LoVetri. Erin joined the Faculty of the LoVetri Institute for Somatic Voicework in 2020.

Erin is a member of the Ontario Registered Music Teachers’ Association (ORMTA), the Canadian Federation of Music Teachers’ Association (CFMTA) and the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS).

Erin is active in the vocal pedagogy community and stays up-to-date with current advancements in the field of voice. Routinely attending conferences, courses and workshops throughout Canada and the United States, she brings this extensive knowledge into the voice studio in order to meet the changing needs of her students. It is her goal to work with students to make their instrument the most free, healthy, expressive and capable that it can be.

Erin has been teaching in the Music Theatre- Performance Program since 2013 and has musically directed staged readings of ‘Nine’ and ‘Company,’ New Faces 2015, as well as playing keyboard for several SLC productions and Thousand Islands Playhouse in their production of ‘Into the Woods.’

Erin is currently pursuing a Graduate Certificate in Vocology at Lamar University in Texas, in the Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences.

Ian Simpson

Mr. Simpson has been an adjunct professor and voice teacher at SLC since 2014 and continues to work as a professional musical theatre performer. He is currently the Canadian Regional Representative for Musical Theatre Educators’ Alliance. Ian has been a professional actor and singer for over 35 years and has worked at such prestigious theatres such as Stratford Festival, Shaw Festival, Charlottetown Festival, American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco and the US National Tour of Mamma Mia! He has worked with Tony nominated directors Frank Galati,

Susan H. Schulman, Gary Griffin, Brian Macdonald, and Brian Bedford; Olivier nominated director Phyllida Lloyd; and esteemed Canadian directors Donna Feore, Robert McQueen, Jackie Maxwell, Christopher Newton, and Richard Monette. He has toured to over 144 cities across Canada, the US, and Mexico and has sung with The Orchestra Japan across Japan and Taiwan. Selected shows include Mamma Mia! (US National Tour), Les Misérables, The Producers, La Cage aux Folles, Elf, The Music Man, King Lear, 1776, Anne of Green Gables, Camelot, Falsettos, Into the Woods, Carousel, The Sound of Music, Passion, The Hockey Sweater, Guys and Dolls, Pollyanna (new musical workshop).

He is a graduate of Queen’s University (Bachelor of Music in voice) and Sheridan College (Diploma in Music-Theatre Performance). He has studied vocal pedagogy at Penn State (Mary Saunders-Barton, Bel Canto, Can Belto), Somatic Voicework ™ (Levels I, II, III with Jeanie LoVetri), Boston Conservatory Vocal Pedagogy, Rock the Audition Teacher Training (Sheri Sanders), Soul Ingredients ™ (Dr. Triniece RobinsonMartin, Princeton University) and continues his personal development in staying current with the demands of the contemporary commercial singing voice with such courses on Belting, Training Transgender Voices, What is Mix?, Musical Styles, and vocal pathologies.

Kyle Golemba

Kyle Golemba is a graduate of Sheridan College (Bachelor of Music Theatre Performance) and the University of Guelph (MA in Theatre Studies). On screen, he has appeared in A Christmas Dance Reunion with Corbin Bleu and Monique Coleman (Lifetime), SurrealEstate (Syfy), Hairspray (New Line Cinema), and as Jack the Wrapper in Ross Petty's A Christmas Carol (CBC). His work on stage has taken him across Canada, including twelve seasons between the Stratford and Shaw festivals. Favourites include: Shaw: Holiday Inn (Ted), White Christmas (Mike), Gypsy (L.A.), Rope (Kenneth Raglan), Cabaret (Bobby); Stratford: 42nd Street (Andy), Kiss Me, Kate (Gremio), West Side Story (A-Rab); Drayton: The Drowsy Chaperone (Robert Martin), One for the Pot (Clifton Weaver); My Fair Lady (Freddy, Capitol Theatre); The Secret Garden (Dickon, Podium Concert Productions); The Comedy of Errors (Antipholus of Ephesus, Canadian Stage); Funny Girl (Eddie, Segal Centre); and three Ross Petty pantos. Kyle also created a revue of Canadian musical theatre, Making Love in a Canoe, with music director Adam White. The show has been performed at theatres, bars, and festivals across Canada. The official album, featuring four never-before-recorded Canadian songs, can be found on iTunes/Apple Music. As an educator, Kyle has taught for the Stratford Festival, the Shaw Festival, Sheridan College, and St. Lawrence College, as well as private studios across the country.

Laura Jeffs

Laura Jeffs has been dancing, competing and coaching for almost 25 years. Laura has a wide variety of dance training, specializing in Classical Ballet. She was hand selected to perform for huge names such as Celia Franka and Karen Kain, when she was a young ballerina. She is a graduate from The Quinte Ballet School of Canada, has completed all of her exams (studying both RAD and Cecchetti), and has trained with Les Grands Ballet Canadiens in Montreal, Quebec, as an upcoming company member. Laura has competed in both Ballet and Jazz, winning National Titles across North America before entering the world of Latin & Ballroom. Laura is currently the Co-Owner and Director of Art Motion Dance Studio Academy with her partner, Misha Kudriashov, in Ottawa, Ontario. Aside from performing and competing, Laura has become extremely passionate about spreading awareness to young aspiring dancers of the importance of understanding body awareness in a classical setting. She has made it her ultimate goal to help dancers of all backgrounds develop a stronger foundation of technique that they can apply to all genres of dance and use in their everyday life.