Founder and Executive Director of Raleigh’s Theatre In The Park. A graduate of The University NC School of the Arts, he was raised in Enfield, NC and became his hometown’s first Eagle Scout. Summers during his college years were spent as a leading actor in The Lost Colony, the oldest outdoor drama in the country. While there, David premiered his first original play, Um Dilly. (This past summer, David returned as Director of the show.) Upon graduation, he became the first Theatre Arts Consultant for the N.C. Department of Public Instruction. A year later, he founded Theatre In The Park, and established its home in the old Pullen Park Armory building. In only a few years, Theatre In The Park became North Carolina’s largest community theatre with an international reputation.
Ashley graduated in 1994 from Salem College with a Bachelor of Arts Degree. She first joined Theatre In The Park as the Office Manager after several years of working in advertising and now works as the Executive Assistant, coordinating all of the Executive Director’s public appearances and scheduling. Ashley also maintains the extensive A Christmas Carol archives for the theatre.
After wearing several hats at Theatre In The Park, including volunteer, backstage crew, costume dresser, stage manager, office manager, and box office manager, Erin settled into the role of Financial Director in 2011. Having a largely retail and alternative health care support background, she has enjoyed the challenge of this new role and the opportunity to learn new things everyday. Erin loves live theatre, live music, and anything that puts her closer to animals. A native of Connecticut, she is always ready to cheer on the Lady Huskies against any ACC team. Erin lives in Durham and does not like talking about herself in third person.
Brent Simpson came to Theatre In The Park after 15 years in the telecommunications industry, working for companies such as MCI, Global Crossing, and Verizon. He is a 2007 graduate of Campbell University and holds a degree in Social Science. Brent not only enjoys working behind the scenes at Theatre In The Park, but has also been seen on stage in Ira David Wood III’s A Christmas Carol as the Baker and Mr. Fezziwig. Other Theatre In The Park credits include Romeo and Juliet and Angels in America. While away from Theatre In The Park, Brent enjoys attending local theatre productions, reading, movies, and travel.
A Raleigh native, Ira is no stranger to Theatre In The Park. He made his first stage appearance as an infant in his father’s beloved A Christmas Carol in 1984. Since then he has been seen in television mini-series, television programs (Including as an accomplice on Punk’d) as well as feature films. He taught acting at the prestigious acting studio “The Shop” in North Hollywood, California. Ira is an accomplished director and for Theatre In The Park has directed Romeo and Juliet, starring his sister Evan Rachel Wood while he also took on the role of Mercutio, Noises Off, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, and Psycho Beach Party. In 2010, Ira played Old Tom, a leading role in The Lost Colony, a North Carolina treasure and Tony award winning show. While his father was recovering from open heart surgery in 2010, Ira stepped in the role of Scrooge, and has returned to A Christmas Carol as The Lamp Lighter.
Mike grew up in Toronto, Canada, and moved to Raleigh in 1998. He started volunteering with Theatre In The Park in 2008, and after taking a hand at every volunteer position, grew into the role of House Manager. He became the theatre’s first resident House Manager/Volunteer Coordinator in 2009, and stepped on the other side of the stage in 2012 when Ira David Wood III cast him in the role of Reverend Tooker in Theatre In The Park’s production of Cat On A Hot Tin Roof. Outside of the theatre, Mike is a freelance writer, and has had his writings published in the Chicken Soup for the Soul books.
Marilyn has practically grown up in the Raleigh theatre community, being the product of two local actors (Lisa and Rowell). She absolutely lives for live performance and theatre. Marilyn holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre from Meredith College. She then went on to study and perform as an Acting Apprentice and Marketing Intern at Florida Studio Theatre in Sarasota, Florida. She has acted with and stage managed for REP, Deep DIsh, NRACT, Burning Coal, Sonorous Road, Town of Cary, Women’s Theatre Festival and Raleigh Little Theatre. Marilyn has also been stage manager for “The Santaland Diaries” with Jesse Gephart at Theatre In The Park since 2011.
Thomas has designed for Triangle companies including Raleigh Ensemble Players, NC Symphony, Theatre Raleigh, Capital Opera Raleigh, Actors Comedy Lab, Raleigh Dance Theater, Theatre In The Park, Deep Dish Theater Company, Raleigh Little Theater, Applause, Carolina Ballet, The Justice Theater Project and the Miss NC Pageant. For four seasons, Thomas served as Production Manager/Technical Director at The Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts and has spent several years on faculty at William Peace University and Cardinal Gibbons High. He holds a BFA from UNC Greensboro and an MFA from the University of Montana, both in design for theatre, and has been named to Who’s Who in Entertainment. His corporate event and museum work has taken him across North America and Europe. For Theatre In The Park: Regrets Only, The Tempest, Black Pearl Sings!, The Elephant Man, Hair, True West, Almost, Maine, Southern Baptist Sissies and 20 years of A Christmas Carol.