Staff & Board
Brian Clowdus (Founder & Executive/Artistic Director) is an actor, educator, director, and producer. Brian received his BA in Theatre & Dance from Amherst College graduating Magna Cum Laude, with highest distinction for his Thesis Work and holds an MFA in Acting from The University of South Carolina. Brian is also the CEO & Creative Director of Brian Clowdus Experiences which is taking his environmental work all across the country. He has performed/directed in Tokyo, London, Canada, Central and South America, The Caribbean, NYC, LA and in almost every other major city in the United States. He has had the fortune of working with many major theatres and entertainment companies including: The Shakespeare Theatre Company, Surflight Theatre, Shawnee Playhouse, Park Avenue Theatricals, New Bedford Festival Theatre, The British American Drama Academy, Holland America Cruise Lines, Tokyo Disney, The Debaun Performing Arts Center, New London Barn Playhouse, The LAB Theatre, Theatre South Carolina, Aurora Theatre, Fabrefaction Theatre Company, Stagedoor Players and of course Serenbe Playhouse. Brian was named the Top Artistic Director in Atlanta and one of the Top 20 Atlantans to Watch by Creative Loafing as well as Top 15 under 40 by Atlanta Homes and Lifestyles Magazine. Brian won the 2016 Suzi Bass Award for Best Director of a Musical for Miss Saigon, which was awarded 5 other awards including Best Musical, making it most awarded show of 2016. www.BrianClowdus.com
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Gretchen Butler (Managing Director) has been working as a stage manager, production manager, and arts administrator for close to 20 years. Gretchen received her BA in Theatre from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College in 1998, then went on to receive her MFA in Theatre Management from the Hilberry Theatre at Wayne State University in 2001. Upon completion of that degree, Gretchen moved to Atlanta and spent 5 years as a freelance Stage Manager working in venues including Theatre in the Square, Theater Emory, Jewish Theatre of the South, Georgia Ensemble Theatre and Arts Center of Coastal Carolina. In 2006, Gretchen joined the staff of Georgia Ensemble Theatre in Roswell as their Production Manager where she oversaw their Production Department, providing support and supervision for eight productions each season. In the summer of 2014, Gretchen joined Serenbe Playhouse as their Company Manager and in January of 2015 became their first Managing Director.
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Ryan Oliveti (Artistic Associate) is a graduate of Rider University in Lawrenceville, NJ. He completed an internship at Actors’ Express in 2013 and has been working as an Director/Assistant Director in Atlanta since that time. Directing credits include: ART, Charlotte’s Web, The Secret Garden (Serenbe Playhouse). Restaging Directing credits include: The Snow Queen, The Sleepy Hollow Experience (Serenbe Playhouse). Select AD credits include: Miss Saigon, Carousel, Evita, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Oklahoma! (Serenbe Playhouse); Detroit (Horizon Theatre); Godspell (Stage Door Players); Dividing the Estate (Theatrical Outfit); Warrior Class (Alliance Theatre); Kiss of the Spiderwoman, Equus, Seminar (Actor’s Express). Ryan sends his thanks to his family, friends, mentors and the Serenbe Playhouse team. Twitter: @RyanOliveti. Instagram: @ryanoliveti.
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Jennifer Alice Acker (Director of Education) is an Atlanta based actor and director, and the Director of Education for Serenbe Playhouse. She is a graduate of Florida State University, holding dual degrees in Music and Theatre, and has studied with Theatre Academy London, The Globe Theatre (London), and apprenticed with the Atlanta Shakespeare Company. Acting Credits Include: Serenbe Playhouse: The Sleepy Hollow Experience; Horizon Theatre: Nobody Loves You, Da Kink in My Hair; Actor’s Express: RENT (Maureen – Suzi Nominated Performance), Sweeney Todd; Georgia Ensemble Theatre: Romeo & Juliet (Juliet), Camelot (Guenevere), One Slight Hitch; The Atlanta Shakespeare Company: Othello (Desdemona); Titus Andronicus (Lavinia); The Fern Theatre: King Lear (Edmund), Hamlet (Ophelia); The Essential Theatre: That Uganda Play. Directing Credits Include: Theroun D’arcy Patterson’s The Wilderness, Jean Genet’s The Maids, and Jeremiah Parker Hobbs & Jessica De Maria’s The Last Time We Were Here for the New York Music Theatre Festival and Synchronicity Theatre.
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Jarrad Hogg (Director of Digital Marketing) studied Graphic Design at the Art Institute of Atlanta and currently works for the CDC as a Visual Information Specialist. He previously worked with The Fox Theatre, The Fox Theatre Rising Stars, Camp Broadway, and as Education Director for Serenbe Playhouse. Jarrad is thrilled to be a part of the Serenbe Playhouse family and is looking forward to the adventures ahead!
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Board of Directors
Garnie Nygren: Chair
Garnie Nygren is Director of Operations of Serenbe. In that role she is responsible for daily operations of Serenbe Development, The Inn at Serenbe, the Farmhouse Restaurant, The Blue Eyed Daisy and The Spa at Serenbe. She owns and is the managing broker of Serenbe Real Estate. Prior to working at Serenbe, she had a Fellowship in the Georgia Governor’s office with the Environmental, Transportation and Economic Development Policy Advisor. Garnie graduated from the Cornell School of Hotel Administration in 2005. She was recently accepted to the 2012 Institute for Georgia Environmental Leadership (IGEL) Class. She is past President of the Cornell Hotel Society, Georgia Chapter.
Rick George: Vice-chair
Rick George is the Senior Vice President, Enterprise and International Markets at Grasp Technologies, the leading global travel technology company. He has over 25 years of senior leadership experience with companies in the travel, financial services and printing verticals. Rick has been a Serenbe Playhouse Board Member and Executive Committee Member for the last 4 years. He also served for 6 years on the Board of Directors and Executive Committee of the Georgia Business Travel Association, a non-profit organization based in Atlanta. Rick earned a BS degree in Liberal Arts from the University of Kansas. Outside of work, Rick and his wife Susan enjoy wine collecting, cooking and planning their next travel adventure.
Gil Mathis: Treasurer
Gil Mathis is currently Senior Vice President and Head of Insurance Investments for Voya Financial, formerly ING U.S., where he joined in 1998. In this role he is responsible for the investment portfolios of Voya’s six life insurance and annuity companies, working out of Atlanta. Previously he worked in the actuarial consulting practice of Deloitte & Touche, LLP out of Minneapolis. Gil has a B.A. in Economics from Furman University, a Masters in Actuarial Science from Georgia State University, and he holds the Chartered Financial Analyst and Fellow of Society of Actuaries designations. Away from work, Gil regularly volunteers at clinics and with local teams as a USAV IMPACT certified youth volleyball coach. Gil, his wife Jeny and their daughters Davis and Elliot split time between Sandy Springs and a weekend home in Serenbe.
Jenny Costantino: Secretary
Jenny Costantino established KICK Strategy, LLC, a communications and project-management consulting firm, specializing in the arts and entertainment fields, in 2008 and is also co-owner of Costantino Architects. Prior to founding KICK Strategy, Jenny helped build True Colors Theatre Company from 2002 to 2008 alongside Kenny Leon and Jane Bishop. Jenny is a graduate of the 2011 Arts Leaders of Metro Atlanta class, and serves on the boards of St. Thomas More School and The Suzi Bass Awards. She holds a B.S. in Marketing and Business Administration from Middle Tennessee State University. Jenny’s husband was the project architect on the Serenbe Stables and her son performed in the Playhouse’s Velveteen Rabbit—the whole family is in love with Serenbe! Jenny, her husband Tony, and kids Sam and Grace live in Candler Park in Atlanta.
Susan George is the Corporate Relocations and Senior Human Resources Manager at Plum Creek in Atlanta, Georgia. She earned both her undergraduate degree in Journalism and Masters of Public Administration at the University of South Carolina. Throughout her career, she has followed her family’s example of community service and support of the arts. In her spare time, she and her husband, Rick, indulge their passion for food, wine and travel.
Pilar Prinz is a partner at the law firm Lawler Green Prinz & Gleklen in Atlanta. Her practice focuses on family law. Pilar is named as one of Georgia’s Top 100 Attorneys and Top 50 Women Attorneys by Atlanta Magazine. She is a member of the Executive Committee of the Family Law Section of the State Bar, a board member of the Atlanta chapter of the American Jewish Committee, and a past President of the Georgia Association for Women Lawyers. Pilar is a frequent guest on national television, including Fox News Channel, CNN, and HLN. Pilar lives in Serenbe with her husband, Andy, and daughters Holland and Hunter.
Stephanie Walsh has spent 13 years in the fundraising world as a Development Professional, working for organizations that include the Leukemia Society and the American Cancer Society. Her most recent work was with St. Mary’s Health Care System, where she served as the Grant Specialist, helping raise close to a million dollars during her 4-year tenure. Her past community involvement includes the Athens Area Chamber of Commerce, BreastFest Executive Committee, Athens Area Cancer Auxiliary, Lead Athens 2009 Graduate and St. Mary’s Young Professional Advisory Board. Currently she has her own non-profit consulting company, helping young organizations find their way in the ever-changing environment and is CEO/Lead Organizer for Streamline, Organized by Design, a personal and professional organization company. Stephanie is a new resident of Serenbe with her husband, Brandon and her two dogs, Tucker & Miles.
Erika Webber is a philanthropist, patron of the arts and child advocate who spent over 10 years teaching for the Baltimore City Public Schools. A collector of African American artifacts and Native American art, Erika uses her educational expertise to create inclusive and multiracial school curriculum as well as curriculum based specifically on the holdings of the Chris Webber Collection. In addition to serving as the director of the Chris Webber Foundation, Erika is the founder of Social Butterflies, an organization that empowers young girls through education and the arts. Most recently, the Morgan State University alum helped launch Webber Films to produce films and documentaries that inspire and uplift. In keeping with her personal mission to empower the future, Webber Films has established a scholarship fund for aspiring filmmakers