Performing Arts Academy Staff

Meet the Staff

The Magic of Alexo

Alexo

Alexo is a professional magician and children's performer with a unique, sophisticated style. His enthusiasm and energy, coupled with masterful skill, provides his students and audiences with an unforgettable, magical experience.

Danielle Aliotta

Danielle Aliotta

Danielle Aliotta is excited to be back working with the students of Plaza Theatricals Performing Arts Academy!

Danielle is a New York based Actor/Singer/Dancer and Choreographer. She received her Bachelors Degree in Dance from Goucher College concentrating in Choreography and Vocal Performance, with academic honors. Her vocal studies concentrate in both musical theater and opera. She is currently pursuing her Masters Degree in Theater and Dance Education at Adelphi University.

She’s also had the opportunity to study at Steps On Broadway, Broadway Dance Center and the Ailey School. Her most recent stage credits include 42nd Street at the Ogunquit Playhouse and Singin In the Rain at the John W. Engeman Theater.

Danielle’s choreography has been featured in productions for theater companies, middle and high schools throughout Long Island. Her most recent choreography credits include Newsies, Beauty and the Beast and Shrek.

David Catalano

David Catalano

David Catalano is the Choir Director at Horace Greeley High School in Chappaqua, NY. At Greeley, David directs three choral ensembles, two A Cappella groups, and teaches courses on musical theater, electronic music, and music theory. Additionally, he has prepared numerous students for their annual NYSSMA Solo Festival audition. David holds two degrees from the University of Delaware (B.M., Music Education; M.M., Choral Conducting).

Becky Goldhammer

Becky Goldhammer

Becky Goldhammer has been designing and building props and headpieces for Plaza Theatricals since 2012. Additionally, she works as a set decorator and set designer. Prior to working with Plaza, she was an NYC school teacher and worked for the Santa Fe Opera Company and worked in the art department of Brooks Van Horn Costume Co.

Emma Harrington

Emma Harrington

Emma Harrington currently teaches elementary general music and chorus in the Plainview-Old Bethpage School District. She received her Bachelor of Music and Master of Music from the University of Delaware and is certified to teach K-12 music. She has been teaching private voices lessons for over 3 years and has directed numerous theater productions with students grades 3-12. Emma also serves as the chairperson for the Division 2 All-County Chorus Festival in Nassau County.

Joseph Janover

Joseph Janover

Joseph Janover is a Long Island-based music educator, composer/arranger, tenor, multi-instrumentalist, and pit musician. He currently musically directs/conducts at numerous LI theater companies. Previously, he resided in Potsdam, where he held a resident music director/conductor position at Clarkson Theatre Company. With nearly one-hundred credits of theatre experience, Mr. Janover is a strong advocate for theatre as a means of expression and opportunity for all. Past Plaza Theatrical credits include RENT, Godspell, The Who’s Tommy, Mamma Mia, and Holiday for Toys. He holds degrees in Music Education (MM, BM) from the Crane School of Music.

Alan Kingsley

Alan Kingsley

Alan Kingsley (Musical Director/PAA Coordinator) joined Plaza in 2007 and has worked on many shows each year. Recent shows include 101 Dalmatians, High School Musical, Aladdin, Mame, Gypsy, and many others. He has been a musical director and piano instructor for 50 years.

Alexandra Leavey

Alex Leavy

Alex is a graduate from the University of New Haven, having studied Music Industry and Theater. She has been taking dance classes since she was 3 years old at the Dance Project, located in Queen. Alex has been working in the PAA program since 2017. She has a passion for teaching as well as seeing students grow and prosper in their craft!

Andrew McCluskey

Andrew McCluskey

Andrew McCluskey is an actor from Long Island who graduated with his associates in Theater from Nassau Community College. He has since gone on to work numerous professional productions. Past credits include numerous productions with the John W. Engeman Theater, the national tour of Four Score and Seven Years Ago with ArtsPower, Actor for RWS and Associates, as well as various children’s and Mainstage productions presented by Plaza Theatricals.  With  Plaza’s Performing Arts Academy, Andrew’s directorial credits include Carrie, Grease, Spring Awakening, and Into The Woods.

Donovan Molinaro

Donovan Molinaro

Donovan Molinaro has been part of the Plaza Theatrical family since a young age. He has appeared in Plaza’s PAA productions, Main Stage Musicals, and Family Theatre Musicals. Donovan has always had a love, and an eye, for theatrical design. He is currently pursuing his degree in technical theatre and design.

Carolyn Popadin

Carolyn Popadin

Carolyn is a NY based teaching artist, educator, director and performer. She brings her love of theatre to students throughout Long Island and Brooklyn directing school musicals and incorporating theatre arts into class curriculums.

She is also a drama consultant for Council Center of Brooklyn, co-director of Infinity Arts LI, and a member of the theatre faculty at Usdan Summer Camp for the Arts.

Carolyn has studied in the professional acting program with the British American Drama Academy in Oxford, UK and has toured the US with the National Theatre for the Performing Arts.

She is looking forward to working with the talented students at Plaza.

Brianna Selesky

Brianna Selesky

Brianna Selesky has been working with the Plaza organization for over 5 years. She got her master's degree in adolescent education from St. John’s University and has enjoyed working with different grade levels since graduation. She also works with Mischief Management running different stages at their conferences throughout the year (Broadwaycon, PodcastCon, Leakycon). She currently resides in Brooklyn.

Brian Sweeney

Brian Sweeney

Brian Sweeney is a Long Island-based pianist, composer, and musical director. Previous directing credits at Plaza include Into the Woods, Mamma Mia, Godspell, Tommy, and Heathers. Brian has also worked recently on community productions of Legally Blonde, Sweeney Todd, and Bring It On, among others. Since 2017, he has served as a musical director and staff accompanist at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in Manhattan. Brian is also an established composer, having premiered shows in both NY Winterfest and Theatre for the New City. His musical Day and Age is currently in development and expected to be presented on Long Island in the near future. Brian holds degrees from the Frost School of Music (Music Business and Entertainment Industries) and the Crane School of Music (Performance). When not working in the theatre, he enjoys performing with his band The Inoculated Canaries, and his a cappella group Tacoppella.

Michelle Taplin

Michelle Taplin

Michelle is a performer, teacher, choreographer and director who is thrilled to be working with the PAA again! She is a Muhlenberg College alum where she graduated with a double major in Theatre and Business (Arts Administration). Currently, Michelle is the program director for the Sunrise Association, a nonprofit for children with cancer and their siblings, and is pursuing her Masters degree in Theatre Education (K-12) at Adelphi University.