THD Welcomes New Faculty and Staff Members

Published September 12, 2023

Eero Laine, PhD.

Eero Laine, Chair, UB Department of Theatre and Dance

As we begin a new academic year, the Department of Theatre and Dance is pleased and excited to welcome new faculty and staff members, as well as announce the promotion of current personnel. 2023-2024 also represents the department's second year under the leadership of Eero Laine, PhD.  

Let’s meet the new members of UB Theatre and Dance (in alphabetical order).

Alexandra Hasselback.

Alexandra Hasselback

Ally Hasselback (she/her) is very excited to join UB's Department of Theatre and Dance as an Assistant Production Manager. She is an Equity Stage Manager, who, over the past 13 years, has worked in the professional theatre scenes of Boston, Pittsburgh, Omaha, Norfolk, and Wichita.

She has experience stage managing and calling for dance, theatre, musical theatre, opera, devised works, new productions, and live events. Most recently, she was a 2023 Season Stage Manager for Music Theatre Wichita's productions of Beauty and the Beast, Ragtime and CATS.

Ally is very excited to return home to Buffalo, and join the incredible Production Team at the Department of Theatre and Dance. Some of her favorite hobbies include spending time with her family, going on hikes, attending baseball games, and starting netflix shows, but never finishing them.

Rick Haug.

Rick Haug

Rick Haug has a BFA in Theatrical Production and Design and a MA in Theatre and Performance and was recently promoted to Production Manager within the Department of Theatre and Dance at UB.  Before the promotion Rick served as Scene Shop Manager and a Technical Director for the Department.  In addition to working at UB, Rick most recently freelanced as the Technical Director for Finger Lakes Opera’s production of Aida performed at the Rochester Broadway League Theatre.  He has also served as the Technical Director for Murder on the Orient Express, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, and Three Musketeers performed at Shea’s 710 Theatre in Buffalo, produced by All For One Productions. Before coming to UB Rick started his Higher Ed work experience at Niagara County Community College (Technical Director) and SUNY Fredonia (Scene Shop Manager). In addition to working in Western NY, Rick traveled across the world with The Wizard of Oz, Shrek the Musical, Spring Awakening, and The Gazillion Bubbles Show, stopping in 49 US states, Canada, China, and Malaysia. Rick is a proud husband and father and couldn’t do it without the love and support of his wonderful wife Valeri. Rick is also a proud union member in IATSE local 10 Buffalo and UUP.   

Matt Marco.

Matthew Marco

Visiting Assistant Professor Matthew Marco has joined the full-time faculty as a Clinical Assistant Professor. Marco is a conductor, coach, and collaborative pianist based in Buffalo, NY. This season will be his first as Artistic Director of Buffalo Opera Unlimited, a company that highlights Buffalo-based talent in operatic works from both within and outside of the traditional canon. Within the Department of Theatre and Dance, Marco teaches courses in musicianship, while coaching and providing music direction for all curricular musicals. In addition to opera and musical theater, he enjoys regular performances with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, including the 2022 Carnegie Hall performance, Naxos recording sessions, and concerts on both the classics and pops series.

Mr. Marco has also performed with Amarillo Opera (TX), the Center for Contemporary Opera (NY), Civic Morning Musicals (Syracuse, NY), the National Choral Festival (Carnegie Hall, NY), Opera Tampa (FL), and the Savannah VOICE Festival (GA). Locally, he has held conducting and coaching positions with Nickel City Opera, the Orchard Park Symphony Orchestra, the Western New York Chamber Orchestra, the Hillman Opera Company, and Opera-Lytes. For eleven years, he was the accompanist of the Buffalo Master Chorale, and has performed with the Buffalo Gay Men’s Chorus, the Buffalo Chamber Players, Friends of Vienna, and the Western New York Chamber Orchestra. Mr. Marco studied piano with Anne Kissel and François Germain, and conducting with Paul Ferington and Brian Doyle.

Rachel Olszweski.

Rachel Olszweski

Rachel Macklin Olszewski is excited to return to UB and Buffalo after a wonderful experience working as the Administrative Director for the Art and Design Department at California Polytechnic University in San Luis Obispo, CA. Rachel has over a decade of arts administrative experience through various non-profit organizations and educational institutions. She is also an alum of UB, with an MA in Arts Management. Rachel has been committed to the theatre community in Buffalo. In addition to completing a BFA in Theatre Performance at Niagara University, she has served on the Board of Directors for Post-Industrial Productions. She is thrilled to be serving as Department Administrator for Theatre and Dance while Veronica Sedota is on maternity leave. 

Danielle Rosvally.

Danielle Rosvally

Danielle Rosvally, PhD (she/her) has been promoted to Assistant Professor of Theatre at the University of Buffalo. Her work examines Shakespeare as cultural capital, particularly iterations that intersect with performance and theatrical labor. Her book Theatres of Value: Buying and Selling Shakespeare in Nineteenth-Century New York City explores how nineteenth-century New York theatre makers bought and sold the commodity of Shakespeare, and how these performances of value intersect with American nation building and national identity. The volume is forthcoming with SUNY press. She is the co-editor of Early Modern Liveness: Immediacy and Presence in Text, Stage, and Screen (Bloomsbury Arden 2023), and a special issue of Shakespeare devoted to issues of contingency in early modern studies.  

Rosvally's next project, Yassified Shakespeare, is a multimedia exploration of how iterations of Shakespearean performance and Shakespeare’s cultural capital critically intersect with drag and drag aesthetics. This project, co-authored with Trevor Boffone, won the 2022 Collaborative Research Award from the American Society for Theatre Research. Since 2020, Danielle has co-convened the Early Modern research working group at the American Society for Theatre Research conference. Danielle is a fight director and has pioneered stage combat as part of the curriculum at UB, introducing a course which serves multiple curricular pathways in the university. At UB, she has directed Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar (2019), and Twelfth Night (2022), and will be directing Henry VI part ii in the spring. Her work has been published in Theatre Topics, Studies in Musical Theatre, Borrowers and Lenders, Early Modern Studies Journal, several edited collections, and Shakespeare Bulletin, as well as on TikTok: @YassifiedShax

Tom Tucker.

Tom Tucker

After many years as United University Professions (UUP) Buffalo Center Chapter President Thomas J. Tucker returned to THD a few years ago as a senior staff associate who serves as Scene Shop Manager as part of his duties.

In 2012 Tucker received the Regional Outstanding Leader Award from the Western New York Region of New York State United Teachers (NYSUT). He was the first labor leader from higher education to receive the award, the most prestigious presented in the NYSUT region, which represents more than 19,000 members throughout Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans and Wyoming counties.

Tucker was also a delegate to the state-wide UUP Delegate Assembly, a UUP delegate to the NYSUT Representative Assembly and served as UUP's statewide coordinator for VOTE Cope, the NYSUT political action committee. He was also statewide Vice President of UUP. 

Tom is the current President of The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States (IATSE) Local 10.

For the past 30 years Tucker was also Shop Foreman, Master Carpenter and Head Rigger at University at Buffalo Center for the Arts.

Nicholas Quinn.

Nicholas Quinn

Nicholas Quinn is a new Visiting Clinical Assistant Professor of Lighting Design with the department of Theater and Dance. He received his BA from Slippery Rock University and his MFA from Ohio University.   

Nicholas has been working in higher education for more than 10 years. In that time, he has mentored many young designers who have gone on to win awards with organizations such as the Kennedy Center and the Stagehands Institute.  

As an active freelance designer, Nicholas has worked nationally at places such as the Public Theater and Baryshnikov Arts Center in Manhattan, and the Smithsonian African American Museum in DC. Nicholas is also involved with many local theaters. Most recently, he was named a company member for Road Less Traveled Productions in 2023.

Nicholas looks forward to incorporating his years of teaching and freelance experience to the University at Buffalo to help students get a start in the industry.