Glenda Boling is an Oral Communications professor at Danville Area Community College. A graduate of Purdue University and a 2007 William H. Meardy Faculty of the Year award winner, Glenda begin the DACC Players drama program in 2004 with just a handful of hopeful young actors. Under her direction, the program has grown to include multiple yearly productions with casts as large as 75 students and community members.
Phillip Langley, Lead Instructor for Developmental Eduction and English Instructor, joined DACC Players in 2007 with the production More Than Meets the Eye. A graduate of the University of Illinois with degrees in English and History, and a Masters Degree in Communications from Tiffin University, the Theater Department at DACC was a natural fit. Since 2007, Phillip has helped co-director Glenda Boling grow the DACC Players, such as co-directing the group's first musical production of Leader of the Pack in 2009. In 2014, Phillip was honored with the Faculty of the Year award at DACC, and in 2016, Phillip was also honored as the Illinois Community College Trustee's Association State-wide Faculty of the Year. While working with students is always Phillip's primary motivation, he very much enjoys working on the technical aspects of a production, specializing in lighting design and application as well as set design and staging.
Dr. Eric Simonson joined the DACC Faculty in 1999, working exclusively as the college's music faculty. In 2009, Dr. Simonson began using his musical talents to help the DACC Players expand into the Musical Theater genre. Since then, Dr. Simonson has been the musical director for Leader of the Pack, Hairspray!, and Les Miserables. In 2015, Dr. Simonson authored a new opera/musical entitled Ann and Abe to be performed by the DACC Players in their 2015-16 season, for which he also served as musical director. Dr. Simonson was honored as the DACC Faculty of the year in 2011. Additionally, his original music compositions have been featured in concerts across North America, including SEAMUS (Society of Electroacoustic Music in the United States), ICMC (International Computer Music Conference) and SCI (Society of Composers Incorporated) performances.
Nicole Miller, Choreographer, begain working with the DACC Players in the spring of 2009 with Leader of the Pack. Since then, Nicole has choreographed Hairspray!, Stage Door, Les Miserables, The Rocky Horror Show, and Funny Girl. Additionally, she was excited to return to the stage in 2015 when she took on the additional responsibility of playing Columbia in The Rocky Horror Show.
First and foremost, we are teachers. Running an educational acting program brings different challenges and requires a different mind-set than traditional theater directing. The vast majority of our students have never graced a stage - many have never seen a live production before. As teaching directors, our focus has to be to take the student from where he/she begins and provide them not only the skills to complete their part on stage, but also to provide them with learning that can be applied to their everyday lives. While the majority of our students will never be professional actors (some, however, do become quite successful in theater and acting careers!), the skills learned on the stage can provide valuable learning for the real world. "All the world's a stage..." is never truer than in today's world. Additionally, we want to foster a love of theater and the arts within our students. We want to show them a side of life that, hopefully, they will want to embrace at some level as they grow and mature. Perhaps some will pursue acting professionally. Others might have a love that they use in local or regional theater. College must open students' eyes to the world of possibilities. That is our truest mission as teaching directors.