Spark Creative Works, Long IslandWelcome to Our Creative Community
| Meet Our Team | Board of Directors
President & Creative Director | B.A. Performing Arts | Minor Concentrations: Directing & Communications
Actor | Writer | Director
Jes was introduced to the performing arts world at the age of 13 by her father, an on-air radio personality in CT. She has over 18 years of on-stage experience and pursued her BA in performance at HOFSTRA University before transferring back to CT to complete her degree at Western Connecticut State University. While attending she also studied separate minor concentrations in directing and costuming.
She has been fortunate enough to travel overseas to perform at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and has participated in several NYC productions and many summer stock Shakespearean festivals in Connecticut and the surrounding NY & Long Island area. Most recently she has been performing in regional theatre productions throughout Long Island, developing Spark Creative Works and working as a company member for the Long Island Children's Museum Theatre.
She has been exposed to many styles of theatre and storytelling including; classical, experimental, puppetry, film and Commedia Del'Arte. Above all else, she values artistic exploration. She has also had the opportunity to work on several short films, independent films and large scale film productions as a performer. One of her favorite artistic challenges over the last three years has been working on the "Happenstance" Production/Acting team for their yearly 48 hr film festival in New Haven CT.
Noticing the lack of opportunity for female directors, lack of female voice within the local playwriting community, lack of quality roles available to women, she saw an opportunity for change. Also noted, was the need for more social awareness in regard to women's issues and history as a whole within the theater community. She approached longtime friend and colleague Megan Dehey. Together they created “Spark Creative Works Inc”; a creative arts production company dedicated to empowering women to step into leadership roles within the performing arts & entertainment community. We seek to inspire the female voice through playwriting, film, & comedy and to advance the quality of roles for female performers. In addition, we look to educate our community on women's issues and history while lending support to causes that align these ideals. Welcome to the family, let's spark the conversation!
Vice President & Artistic Director | Dancer
B.A. Dance & Exercise Doctorate in Physical Therapy
Megan started out her performing arts career in dance at the age of three and began performing in community theater at the age of five. She attended formal dance training at the Eglevsky Ballet School and American Theater Dance Workshop while venturing into the city on weekends to attend Broadway Dance Center and attending summer workshops at both the Ailey School and the Martha Graham School. She graduated with honors from Hofstra University with a bachelor’s degree in Dance and Exercise Science.
Following college, Megan gathered valuable theater experience, She has performed in regional theater throughout Long Island and NYC and has choreographed regional theater productions of Godspell, Fiddler on the Roof, Westside Story, and Once Upon a Mattress.
Megan has had the opportunity to work as resident choreographer for Broadhollow Theatre Co.'s TYA program at the Elmont Public Library location for several seasons. While working with Broadhollow she also co-directed, choreographed and taught musical theatre for their children's classes, working with children ages 5-16 years of age.
Driven by her interest in human movement and helping those around her Megan recently took a break from performing in order to pursue her doctorate in physical therapy. She currently practices as a pediatric physical therapist working with children ages 3-21 with intellectual disabilities, multiple disabilities, traumatic brain injury, and autism.
As someone who has been around the Long Island theater scene for a while now, she hopes that this company is able to raise consciousness, raise awareness and “spark” a conversation about female voices in the performing arts. As an educator, she hopes that this group inspires young people to get involved in theater and the arts. As a member of the health care community, she hopes that she can help make arts based therapies more available to those who could truly benefit from them. Megan also holds a 200-hour teacher training certification in yoga, a certification in strength and conditioning and a level 1 certification in USA Weightlifting, because a girl’s got to stay strong and busy!
Treasurer & Company Manager | BFA Theatre, Concentration in Stage Management | Jill of all Trades
Jackie fell in love with the theatrical process early on; her siblings will tell you that she always had a dramatic side, and so a career in theatre was inevitable. She hails from a small town in the hills of Western Maryland. Her passion was ignited early on when she was accepted into her high school's show choir; the Sentinel Sounds. She was excited to be a part of the elite singing and dancing group that brought her lifetime friends and the desire to study theatre performance at the college level.
Following high school Jackie had the great privilege to follow her passion by pursuing her BFA in performing arts with a concentration in Stage Management at Marietta College. While there, her mentor introduced her to technical theatre and she found out that her talents shine behind the scenes as well. She found her element while being immersed in all levels of production from directing one acts to managing one of the of the largest scale musicals produced within her time at Marietta. One of her proudest achievements while there was earning the first “Excellence in Theatre” award (Roland T. Loreman award and scholarship) from the department in just her freshman year!
After completing her BFA Jackie held a Stage Manager residential internship with Lexington Children’s Theater of Kentucky. While there, she worked on professional productions as well as community children’s productions. She also had the great opportunity of working with their touring company.
After completing her internship she returned home to Maryland where she worked with theatre troupes and collaborated with local artists and friends to create Broadway reviews in a local park amphitheater. Throughout the yearly reviews her contributions varied from performer, stage manager, company management, set crew and many more. In addition Jackie continued her love of dance she is proud to have been an original member of the award winning competing dance troupe, Chorevo.
Board Member | Marketing & Events Coordinator |
B.A. Professional Communications | Actor | Director
Gianna graduated from SUNY Farmingdale with her BA in Professional Communications, her intention was to fulfill her dream of working in the Arts through producing large scale events. Working as a production assistant and event manager with Chezzam Event Group, a well known event production company specializing in theatrical and dance performances for events ranging from 1,000 guest corporate parties to 20 person weddings.
As a child she aspired to be an actor and singer. She began singing and taking voice lessons at age 6 and continued to do so into college. With the support of her loving family, Gianna decided to pursue he dream of being an actor and singer performing all over the local Long Island and NY scene. She began taking improv classes with John Dorcic Improv and has been on a journey learning the film and tv business. She fulfilled a goal in becoming a Yoga instructor in effort to empower individuals in need mentally, physically and spiritually.
Gianna is a member of Cherry Bomb Improv and is grateful to be a part of Spark Creative Works. She feels that although the industry is getting slightly better at incorporating more versatile narratives and opportunities for woman, it is evident that opportunities for women to step into leadership roles is lacking. The message and purpose of Spark is one she is very passionate about and she is looking forward to working with the strong, independent, and knowledgeable women of the Spark Creative Works team.
Board Member | Director of Community Outreach Dancer | Actor | Director
Josie McSwane is a New York based Dancer, Choreographer, Actor and Singer. She earned her BFA in Dance Studies from Long Island Post University and received her certification as an instructor for the Zena Rommett Floor-Barre® Technique.
Miss McSwane spent some time in Los Angeles where she focused on her hip-hop training and performed as a backup dancer for singer/songwriter Abrina. She had the opportunity to perform with the Martha Graham Dance company through a residency led by associate dance director, Susan Kikuchi. Ms. McSwane performed as a member of, formerly known, Broadhollow Theatre Company, and choreographed for some of their children’s theatre productions. She is a member of the Peconic Ballet Foundation Company and has performed with them at various locations on Long Island.
In addition to Ms. McSwane’s dance training, she has trained in various acting methods such as Stanislovsky, Meisner, Strasberg and Improv and has acted in and directed numerous short plays as well as acting in short films. Josie has received vocal training in her youth as well as continuing on through college and dedicated some time in her performing career to her music.
She wrote and recorded an EP called “Levels” that she performed live at local venues and had the opportunity to be featured with other local artists. She truly values the diverse training and exposure she has received in the performing arts and is thrilled to be a member of The Sparks Team and all they stand for and can not wait to work together to create more opportunity for women in the performing arts.
Performer & Acting Coach | Musical Artist | Director
Nikki Silva is a Vocal and Acting Coach at The Actors Workshop. She is the Director and Founder of The Exceptional Pageant, a beauty pageant for individuals with developmental disabilities. Nikki is also the lead singer and songwriter of "The Big Happy," a rock/funk/reggae band. Nikki Silva has numerous film, TV, and producer credits.
She is on the board of directors at "Theatre Out Of Bounds," a theatre company based out of Studio Theatre, Long Island. She supports many charities and organizations, as freshly appointed Secretary for "Spark Creative Works" she is thrilled for the opportunity to pave the way for female performers, writers and director's from Long Island. Nikki Silva is a Vocal and Acting Coach at The Actors Workshop. She is the Director and Founder of The Exceptional Pageant, a beauty pageant for individuals with developmental disabilities. Nikki is also the lead singer and songwriter of "The Big Happy," a rock/funk/reggae band. Nikki Silva has numerous film, TV, and producer credits.