Meet The Team
Angela Adolf - Executive Director & Producer
DeDebra Miller - Music Director
Shannon Labus - Choreographer
Joel is ecstatic to be on the team at Homer Youth Theater. After a ten year hiatus from community theatre he is thrilled to be getting back into the scene with this production of Seussical: The Musical. Joel is in his sixth year teaching 1-4 general music at Butler Elementary in Lockport, IL. Joel has performed in more than 20 plays and musicals including The Secret Garden, Hello Dolly and Fiddler on the Roof.
Joel earned his bachelors of Music Education from Illinois State University where he was a member of the concert choir for three years. During this time Joel was given the opportunity to sing a mass at the famous Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, France during a tour of France and Spain. Joel is thrilled to be sharing his love of music with this ensemble and hopes that he can foster the same love of music that he has in each and every cast member.
Joel Huffman - Assistant Music Director
Jessica Connors - Director & Stage Manager
I started out like so many of you, my parents took me to musicals, and I simply fell in love! I loved the theater with the beautiful decor, plush velvet seats, high beautiful ceilings loaded with twinkling chandeliers. I loved the buzz of the pre-show excitement, the sounds of the orchestra tuning up, the lights flashing...and then the curtain goes up, and you are transported into a storybook, to the streets of New York, back in time, onto a cruise ship...it was simply love! It was that love that had me singing in choirs, joining dance teams, and trying out for my high school musical (not THE high school musical, just to clarify). I was hooked.
After college I was blessed to become a part of a small community theater where I learned to fine tune my choreography skills, started directing, learning all about each and every detail that goes into producing a musical...fun stuff...hard work, but again, I loved it!
I was then hired to direct a show for a local play write...falling even harder for the art of theater! After starting a family...thinking that I should leave my love of theater in the past...my heart called me again and I started producing and directing shows in Hinsdale, IL. Now we've branched out and are excited to see what Lockport and Homer have in-store for our troop!
I want to share my knowledge, insight, attitude and my love of the arts with you! I am so glad you found us!
Debra received her Bachelors and Master Degrees in music performance from Northern Illinois University. She has been the staff accompanist at both Hinsdale South High School and Lewis University and has accompanied hundreds of young musicians in competitions and recitals (and once was called upon to accompany world-renowned French Horn artist Dale Clevenger). She has performed on French Horn with the Springfield Symphony, The Rockford Symphony, The Northshore Concert Band, and the Chicago Brass Ensemble among many others. Debra is currently an active member of the Illinois State Music Teachers Association, the Music Teachers National Association, the National Federation of Music Clubs, and the National Guild of Organists. She has been teaching music students since1990.
Shannon has been teaching dance in the area since 1994. Shannon is a certified Cecchetti ballet teacher, but is also very experienced with choreographing for Musical Theater. She choreographed her first musical for Lockport Township High School when she was a recent alumni and was hooked on the genre! She opened Wings Dance Studio in 2010 and has loved being a part of the arts community here in Lockport. Shannon is very excited to be a part of Lockport-Homer Youth Theater.
Jessica is beyond excited for the opportunity to be part of a youth theater! She loves helping to spread the joy and pride of being involved in productions to kids at a young age. Her love of theater began early when her parents started taking the family to Chicago to see big, beautiful Broadway musicals. After getting involved in dance and performing at a young age, Jessica went on to major in Theater Arts and Speech Communication in college, where she spent time stage managing and directing as well as performing. After performing at a dinner theater in Chicago for about a year, she and her husband, Shawn, packed up and moved to the burbs to start a family. Her first opportunity to work with youth theater came in 2011 when she began teaching, directing and choreographing for the summer program with Fox Country Players in Yorkville, and introduced her own 3 children to performing. It quickly became a family hobby and they all enjoyed the program for 3 years before moving to Lockport. Beauty and the Beast came along in 2015 and with her kids in the show, Jessica found it hard to stay away. She hopes to continue to spread the love of the theater bug to more and more kids in the area in whatever way Lockport Homer Youth Theater needs!
Linda Curry - Assistant Director & Stage Manager
I have built my life around music and theater, like most of us, because my parents made sure we were exposed to the arts. The love of it all, provoked me to play the flute for 8 years and take part in all of the chorus groups in school, Speech Team and of course every play and musical in my school days through High School (my personal favorites were Midsummer's Night Dream and Music Man). I also was honored to be inducted into The International Thespian Society. I continued my theater dreams, in community theater and proceeded into the Orland Park area. It was with the OPTT, where I was asked to try out as the Evil Stepmother in a child’s version of Cinderella, and I helped open the doors to Adult theater in Orland. I continued to perform in many shows in my adult life (probably close to 40 in my life), alongside my daughter, Morgan, with OPTT. I am BEYOND blessed to be asked to be a part of LHYT!!! Working with Homer 33c, as well as the Drama and Speech Coaches for Hadley Middle School, lets me see all of the kids that come out to learn and perform with LHYT! My son Dylan bit the “bug” at a young age, and is also very involved in theater, which makes me so happy! When not working with LHYT, I can be known to teach cooking classes; cooking for others or even going to NYC!!! I am just so happy to be a continued piece of this team, because seeing these kids achieve their dreams and grow in their own confidence, makes every blood sweat and tears worth it!