Valerie is the Head of Musical Theatre at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She is a member of Actor’s Equity Association, an Associate Member of Stage Directors and Choreographers, and a Certified Master Teacher in the Estill Voice Training System. As an Equity actress, Valerie played Margy Frake in the First National Tour of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s State Fair, starring John Davidson. Other roles include the title role in Cinderella, Maria in The Sound of Music, and Lady Larkin in Once Upon a Mattress.
She first began her studies in musical theatre at the University of Miami and received a BA in Musical Theatre Pedagogy from Otterbein University and an MFA in Theatre Pedagogy from Virginia Commonwealth University. She was the Head of Drama at Campion School, a British international school in Athens, Greece, directing seven productions including Godspell, which toured to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in the summer of 2010. Her other directing or assistant directing/choreography credits include Gypsy, You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown, Avenue Q, Spring Awakening, Urintown, The Producers at Virginia Repertory Theatre and Annie at the Pioneer Theatre. For the last two summers, Valerie has been a guest director at Weathervane Playhouse in Ohio directing both Oklahoma! and The Pajama Game.
In addition to her directing and teaching work, Valerie stays active in other areas of the theatre business. In 2013, she worked as a rehearsal accompanist at Arena Stage in Washington DC on Brecht’s Mother Courage and Her Children starring Kathleen Turner. She has had two articles published in the international journal, Studies in Musical Theatre, and is currently writing an article about the Broadway production of Amazing Grace, having accompanied two early workshops of that production with the creative team.