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Wiley Kimelman

Class of 2023

Wiley Kimelman is an actor/writer from New York City. He attended Frank Sinatra high school in Astoria queens before finding his home here at Mason Gross. Wiley is a film and stand up junkie usually spending his free time rewatching Stepbrothers with a bag of Goldfish. Acting gave me a voice, so I hope that my art can help others find their purpose and fill their souls just like acting has done for me.

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Valeria Perez-Pliego

Class of 2023

Valeria Perez-Pliego is an International Singer, Actress, and Model, who was born in San Pedro Garza García, Nuevo León, México. She started professionally on TV and is best known for her work on the Mexican children’s TV Shows (Zona Siete in Tv Azteca & TV Kidz in Televisa). She got an honorable mention for originating the role Emily in the World Premiere Musical, El Último Regalo (The Ultimate Gift). She’s a NESA (North East School of the Arts) & Interlochen Arts Academy Alumna who got to make her Off-Broadway Debut as Madame Mariette/Ms. Howell in the 2019 Off-Broadway U.S. Premiere Musical of A Little Princess at The Pershing Square Signature Theatre in NYC. She’s been blessed to work with several recognized people in the industry and is grateful to be recognized for her work over the years. When not in school, she enjoys coaching international students on the auditioning/moving process to the USA based on her personal experiences. She keeps training and working hard to achieve her international dreams and inspire others to do the same.

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Téa Guarino

Class of 2023

Téa Guarino (she/her) was born and raised in Bridgewater, New Jersey. From an early age, she knew that the stage was her home. Growing up a natural storyteller, as Téa grew older she longed for a more rigorous and challenging artistic environment. Putting Jersey in her rearview, she left her high school to attend the University of North Carolina School of the Arts High School Program in 2019 for her senior year. There she not only discovered the wonderful world of southern hospitality but also that her lifelong passion of storytelling could be a fulfilling career! Since then, her time at Mason Gross School of the Arts has been truly life changing and she is exhilarated and forever grateful to be able to share her talents with the world.

 

While at Mason Gross her most recent credits include: Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (MGSA), Cleopatra and Iras in The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra at Shakespeare’s Globe in London. She will next play Hall in Men on Boats (MGSA.) 

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Tamir Baldwin

Class of 2023

Tamir Baldwin is from Suwanee, Georgia. He’s a Jennifer Coolidge enthusiast and likes piña coladas and getting caught in the rain. Tamir has had a passion for the arts for as long as anyone in his family can remember. He spent the most of his free time during his pre-adolescent years writing and producing short films, utilizing all of his neighborhood friends as actors and special effects artists, and creating stop motion movies using a range of stuffed animals and action figures. One of his best memories was watching movies with his mother, and Tamir’s favorite was always Shrek 2. His Rutgers Theater Company credits include: Antony in Antony & Cleopatra, Theseus in Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Martson in Don Nigro’s Lurker. He is thankful for the support of his family and friends in unapologetically pursuing his love of the arts and is excited to bring a positive light to the industry.

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Taj Burroughs

Class of 2023

A proud New York native, hailing from the colorful streets of Queens. Taj E. M. Burroughs is the wildest living dream of his ancestors. Raised on Holy word, recited poetry in the morning, affirmations and cheese with grits, Taj has been steeped deep in love for language. Noting poetry
as the first love of his life, he began writing poems, short stories and scripts from the age of 7 with his debut poem My Mama has a Dancing Heart, that has been humbly placed on his family’s fridge ever since. In pursuit of keeping this wide-eyed child off the streets, Taj’s parents placed him in community center theater and music classes. There he trademarks, the birthplace for his love for acting. After unearthing his passions, he went on to study at Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School as a drama major where continued to hone and foster his acting and musical talents. When he is not acting, Taj is using his voice by sharing his poetry at open mic spoken word slam events/competitions, choreographing movement pieces, singing way too loud and laughing even louder or engaging in conversation and action on Black liberation, life, art and joy. His Rutgers Theater Company credits include: Solyony in Three Sisters, Bottom in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Cleopatra in The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra and Cy in Ride (Original Cast). Other credits include: Stage Directions in Model Minority and Benjamin in Seeing Things.

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Sydney Shiotani

Class of 2023

Sydney Shiotani grew up in Los Angeles, California. She was raised by two artists and actors who helped cultivate her creativity from a very young age. 

When she’s not acting she loves to channel her creative energy in other ways. Throughout her teenage years she taught herself to play acoustic/electric guitar and piano by ear. She has been in love with visual art ever since she could remember; from watercolor and acrylic to sculpture, leatherwork, and digital painting, she has dabbled in just about every creative medium she could get her hands on. Since 2016 she has been accepted to work as a professional at the San Diego Comic Con International Art Show, auctioning her pieces there every year since. 

Right before starting her training at Rutgers, she had the opportunity to work with Pamela Adlon on the FX Network show Better Things. Rutgers Company Theater Credits Include: Caesar in Antony and Cleopatra, Lysander in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, John Wesley Powell in Men on Boats. 

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Spencer Cramer

Class of 2023

Spencer Cramer grew up in Los Angeles, where he thankfully managed to avoid the entertainment industry altogether. He instead enjoyed a very typical public school education in Santa Monica, taking advantage of his 6 foot 5 inch frame to win regional championships in both basketball and volleyball (but also lose in historic fashion in the California Division I State Championship game for basketball), and also honing his artistic expression playing the trumpet in the school bands. A classic late bloomer, it wasn’t until 21 when he decided to pursue acting in community college, and a few years later made the obvious choice that any hopeful actor would make: he left Los Angeles to move to New Jersey to study acting. Recent highlights include training at Shakespeare’s Globe Theater in London where he played Enobarbus in Antony and Cleopatra, and playing Oberon in A Midsummer Night’s Dream back in the states. 

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Sophia Giovanis

Class of 2023

Sophia Giovanis is a Greek-American dual citizen, from Minneapolis, Minnesota. Known by many as “Gio”, Sophia hates the nickname Sophie. This is important. Beginning as an MT superstar at the ripe age of 13 years old, Sophia developed vocal nodules, rotating her focus towards the magical world of speech and debate. And it was through the many NFL tournaments where Sophia discovered she carried a natural knack for performing. Thus, Sophia transferred high schools from Orono Public High School to St. Paul Conservatory for Performing Artists where she graduated. Immediately bouncing over to New Brunswick, New Jersey, Sophia studied Meisner at Rutgers Mason Gross School of the Arts. However, all this time, Sophia was funny too! Through her years training, she spent many hours outside the classroom throwing parties, writing sketch and performing improv at The PIT, playing soccer, and working in various bars, restaurants, and call centers! Due to her father, she visits his homeland of Greece quite often to brush up on her Greek, eat the best cuisine in the world, and spend time with family. She is energized by people, by joy, by storytelling.

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Sophia Englesberg

Class of 2023

Sophia Englesberg is an actor from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Immersed in the arts and culture of the city, she grew up loving theater and spending all of her time there. Sophia attended Lincoln Park Performing Arts charter school, where she furthered her training in plays and musicals and fell in love with film. In addition to acting, Sophia is an aspiring writer, filmmaker, and photographer. She is proud to have been a part of producing new plays for the Pittsburgh New Works Festival and Fringe festival. Her Rutgers Theater credits include: Men on Boats (Hawkins), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Lysander), Antony and Cleopatra (Eros/Agrippa), The Don Nigro Plays (Lil/Jane) and -itude.

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Sky Marie

Class of 2023

Sky Marie is a little district with a big voice hailing from Washington D.C. Being from a major city Sky is accustomed to being on the move, this made way for her artistic passion to drive her towards her goals. Since Sky can remember the performing arts have had her heart ( for her mom it was why she asked “ when am I going to do that” after watching That’s So Raven). This firey interest led her to attending Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington D.C. At Rutgers her Theater company credits include Tatiana in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Senica/The Bishop in Men on Boats. Also Sky was elated to play Cleopatra/Iris in Antony and Cleopatra at Shakespeare’s globe theater in London. Her other interests are not limited adventure and travel!  She’s ready to do everything she possibly can (except deep sea diving, she can’t swim) and is never afraid of experiencing anything so the sky will never be the limit.

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