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Meet Our Staff

Crystal Lisbon

Crystal Lisbon

Artistic Director

Crystal has been a part of Hackmatack Playhouse since 1997, appearing in productions of Arsenic and Old Lace, The Hound of the Baskervilles, Boeing Boeing , Leading Ladies, Godspell, Wait Until Dark, The King and I, Oklahoma!, The Foreigner, Tommy, and Carousel, among many others. Her choreography has been seen at the barn in The Music Man, The Sound of Music (2013 & 2000), Godspell, The King and I, and Oklahoma! (2012 & 2001). She directed and choreographed The Fantasticks for the barn in 2017, On the Town in 2016, and West Side Story for Hackmatack's 2015 season. Crystal holds a B.A. in Theater/Performance from The University of Vermont, where she graduated with honors. She has trained with The Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford Upon Avon, Shakespeare and Company, and The Friches Theatre Urbain in Paris, training in the Lecqoc technique. Crystal has also toured the U.S. with The Diary of Anne Frank, and worked with The Manhattan Children's Theater, along with additional regional and touring credits. Over the past 8 years she has been working extensively in Boston as an actor, choreographer, and dialect coach. She has performed in productions of Closer (IRNE nomination Best Play, Best Ensemble), Learn to Be Latina, Blackadder II, Gasping, Act a Lady, The Gingerbread Lady, and The Laramie Project. She has served as dialect coach for Top Girls, Jack the Ripper, And Neither Have I Wings to Fly, Someone Who'll Watch Over Me, and Rooms: A Rock Romance. Locally she has been seen as an actor in Metamorphoses, Arcadia, Into the Woods, and Dead Man's Cellphone. Crystal is a classically trained ballet dancer, studying with The Seacoast Ballet Company, The Walnut Hill School for the Performing Arts, Bradford College Dance Company, Portland Ballet, and Anna Myer Dancers. Along with her Hackmatack credits, she has choreographed productions of Kiss Me Kate, Guys and Dolls, Much Ado About Nothing...With a Twist, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Paint Me a Picture, excerpts from The Nutcracker, Cinderella, and various other individual dance pieces. She has previously served as the Production Manager for Great Bay Academy of Dance, and is the former Director of Dance for Camp CenterStage. In her "off season" from Hackmatack she is a ballet instructor at Joy of Dance, and an Elementary School Librarian.


Danica Carlson

Danica Carlson

Director, "Lend Me a Tenor"

Internationally-sold recording artist Danica Carlson is thrilled to be back for the opening show of The Hackmatack Theater's season for the third year in a row! You may remember Danica as the delightfully dopey detective Billy Dwyer in Unnecessary Farce, or as Belinda in Noises Off, and she is now completing her "Hackmatack Farce Trifecta" as the director for Lend Me a Tenor! Danica has appeared in over 275 film, radio, voice-over and live stage performances since the age of five. She has directed, choreographed and costumed over three dozen shows here on the Seacoast, and has been a scenic charge (set painter) for over a decade. Danica has been nominated for two New Hampshire Theater Awards and eight Spotlight on the Arts Awards all for Best Actress, of which she won for her portrayal of Lady Macbeth at The Rochester Opera House in 2015. In addition to owning her own production company, Back Alley Productions, with co-founder Joi Smith, Danica also performed at The Edinburgh Fringe Festival for the month of August in 2013 with her comedy troupe, Darwin's Waiting Room, of which she has been a member since 2008.


Allison Mosier Sheff

Allison Mosier Sheff

Director, "All Shook Up"

Allison Mosier Sheff is a multifaceted theater professional, whose career spans two decades. She started out as a performer, working in New York and Regional Theater. Allison was then hired as part of the production team to work with professional child actors as an Artistic Liaison (aka Children's Guardian) on Broadway. Over 11 years, she worked on ten Broadway productions and two National Tours. As a director and choreographer she has worked with Ogunquit Playhouse, Jean's Playhouse, Arundel Barn Playhouse, Playwrights Platform, Staten Island Philharmonic, OC Centric at Chapman University, Live Arts Maryland, and the Elephant Theater Company. As an actor she has performed at Town Hall in Manhattan, Lincoln Center, New Amsterdam Theater and New Bedford Festival Theater in addition to numerous commercials and films. Allison has a BA in Theater from UMass Amherst, a certificate in Classical and Contemporary Theater from Guildhall and a certificate in Stage Directing from the Yale School of Drama. She is an associate member of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers (SDC) and a member of Actors Equity and SAG-AFTRA. allisonmosiersheff.com.


Danielle Howard

Danielle Howard

Director, "The Bridges of Madison County"

Danielle Howard is pleased to be returning to the barn this season after directing She Loves Me, one of her favorite musicals, last summer. Danielle has worked at theatres around the country, including Indiana Repertory Theatre, Greenbrier Valley Theatre, and Shadowland Theatre. Local directing credits include: Jane Eyre: A Musical Drama, Driving Miss Daisy, Little Women, Titanic, and South Pacific at Seacoast Repertory Theatre; the Sheldon Harnick/ Michel Legrand musical adaptation of A Christmas Carol with Prescott Park Arts Festival; Enchanted April, Lettice and Lovage, and The Spitfire Grill at ACT ONE, and The Glass Menagerie at the Firehouse Center for the Arts in Newburyport. When she's not directing, Danielle teaches acting at Great Bay Community College, and she is a dedicated volunteer at the Cocheco Valley Humane Society. She is a proud member of Actors' Equity Association and an Associate Member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society. Special thanks to John, her longtime collaborator in theatre and life (ATIAAATIH!)


Gary Locke

Gary Locke

Director, "Dial M for Murder"

Gary has been working on and around theater stages since dirt was new. He is a semi-professional hyphenate, having served as actor-producer-director-writer-designer for a wide range of shows across the decades with his own company, Phylloxera Productions, as well as various theaters in New England including The Players Ring and Seacoast Rep in Portsmouth, and Hatbox Theatre in Concord. Gary has directed productions as diverse as the Gershwin musical Crazy for You, Shakespeare's Macbeth, and Jean Genet's psychological thriller The Maids. He particularly enjoys digging into characters with his actors, and finding the unexpected during the rehearsal process. As an actor, his favorite roles include the Marquis de Sade in Marat/Sade, Henry in 2017's production of The Fantasticks at Hackmatack, and Richard Russell in All the Way. He married his wonderful, if long-suffering, wife Jan 36 years ago this Labor Day.


Christopher Gempp

Christopher Gempp

Children's Camp Director

Summer Camp Details

Christopher is an elementary music teacher by day and is excited to be back again at Hackmatack Playhouse, in his second summer as Children's Camp Director. You may have previously seen him on stage at Hackmatack as Hucklebee in The Fantasticks, The King in Once Upon a Mattress, along with the ensemble of many other shows, such as Les Miserables, Hairspray, Spamalot, and Music Man. He recently directed Little Mermaid Jr., and 9 to 5 at Garrison Players, where he serves on the board of directors and director of Youth Education. He has also run the summer camp at Garrison Players for the past 5 summers. His favorite roles have included Lysander in A Midsummer Night's Dream, Jack in The Importance of Being Earnest, Jacob Marley in A Christmas Carol and Pete and Lendall in Almost Maine.


Sarah Hashem

Sarah Hashem

Children's Camp Music Director

Summer Camp Details

Sarah is thrilled to be back for her sixth Summer at the theater! In the past, she has worked in the box office and played woodwinds in the orchestra pit for Les Miserables, The Music Man, Spamalot, West Side Story, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, On The Town, Once Upon a Mattress, and She Loves Me. Sarah has also played in the orchestra pit for the Rochester Opera House, Prescott Park Arts Festival, Schoolhouse Arts Center, Stages Youth Theater, University of Southern Maine, and several public schools. Sarah is entering her Senior year at USM, studying Music Education, where she has been president of the American Choral Director's Association, helped organize the Maine Middle School All-State Choir, and led rehearsal for the Southern Maine Children's Choir. Recently, she was able to share her love for working with children at the Eastern Division Conference for the National Association for Music Education. She enjoys singing with the Chamber Singers and taking voice lessons at USM. Sarah is eager to share her love of music and theater with the Hackma-campers!